In my younger years, I would ask within myself: Why does it seem as though revival is so slow in coming? There I was, for years and years, faithfully attending Sunday meetings in church buildings or with home church groups. I had to wonder: Do we have an accurate picture of what revival should be?
I had spent many hours studying for a broad and complete understanding of the Bible's content and its message. A few common threads began to become ever clearer in my mind. The message of love and devotion to God was underlined with the idea of drawing closer to God, by learning more and more about what was established in creation by the hand of the Creator. And real love for God means putting into practice in my life what I discover about the Creator. For instance, the Creator is able to come to each individual at their level, without using any approach of looking down on them, and that same approach is what is my duty to each of my neighbors and to strangers whom I meet.
Douglas (Doug) Scofield
Pleasant Valley Rd
Sweet Home, Oregon
Ph. 541 five51 0721
Raised in a "christian home", I became acquainted with many denominations, but I preferred those which were not tightly controlled by a headquarters. My "christian walk" was fairly strict, even though my parents nor most of my siblings were so strict. It was my journey bordering on legalism, which began at around age 9 and continued well into my 40s.
In college, I was curious, and so I attended a whole myriad of church denominations, just to get a broader view. During college, I met a young woman who was as strict as I, and for some reason, I married her. I guess it made sense to me, at the time. Marriage to Diane happened in 1983, right after I earned a college degree in forestry.
We brought into the world ten children (8 boys, 2 girls), we raised them together and now they are all grown (on their own). Six of them are married, and I have thirteen grandchildren. We homeschooled all of our children, but by the time we began homeschooling our youngest three children, I felt compelled to back off from being so strict. My second eldest son, Joel, lit out of our home at age 18 around that time, and he began a not-so-strict life journey. I now applaud his courage, but at the time, he was "rocking the boat". My wife despised it, but I accepted it.
I guess in time that was part of what killed our marriage, right after our youngest turned age 18, so now my wife and I live separately (legal separation, which is essentially just like a divorce). At some point, I had to seriously question the legalism. I kept her apprised of my journey, which included serious studies of the Bible. More and more, I questioned all of the aspects of a legalist, and little by little, I was eyed with greater suspicion by "elders of the church" who wanted me to be at least somewhat of a legalist. I just couldn't see the sense of meeting their demands.
Our family lived 'out in the sticks' of southern Oregon, where we pursued a self-sufficient lifestyle. It was excellent having goats, chickens, ducks and a garden, where our children did chores and learned so much about life. To this day, they all appreciate the way we brought them into the world and taught them (including Joel).
Update, September 2021
Douglas congregates among ministers of HHC, and he has elected Brother Gregory as his Minister of Record. Gregory is Minister of His Church at Summer Lake - HCSL.
Currently, Douglas carries responsibilities as licensed minister and trustee: 1) licensed as Minister of Record for His Church at New River (HCNR), having been elected by three who are Elders of Record associated with HCNR and; 2) trustee of Friends of His Church Missions (FHCM), an auxilliary of HHC.
More about Douglas:
Before my interactions with His Holy Church, I had become very interested in early church history, reading writings of Justin Martyr and Origen, together with some of what Josephus wrote. Through the recent years of my studies of history, I also branched out to read some of what higher critics have presented. This led me to read other ancient writings, including those which may have been written by what is now recognized as western orthodox "catholic" materials.
I am still chewing on these historical studies, and my curiosity of history drives me to keep on reading. The more I read, the more I see what are the changes implemented in modern churches. Those changes are not for the good, I believe. So I prefer to get back to what was good, while also seeking to clear up whatever confusion or ignorance caused disturbances (fallacies) in the practices of early christianity.
To me, a non-legalist is more flexible, less judgmental, more patient, more willing to be curious about others, and all the while, hoping to be completely faithful with the Creator. Principles of the Creator were laid down upon all of creation in the beginning, and being faithful to those principles requires a more thorough understanding of them. Hence, it is recommended to draw near to the Creator. So the non-legalist seeks to practice to the best of his/her knowledge - within the confines of what traits and gifts the Creator has given him or her personally - to do any and all duties of love that are set in the path of life at this moment for him or her. It seems a non-legalist dares not describe to others what they must do; rather, it is best to simply live an exemplary life, living by one's conscience and demonstrating love, and when it is time to describe anything, present ideas as suggestions, but respect their right to ignore my suggestions or modify them for their own situations, as they must live according to their own conscience and not by mine.
What I like best is a vision and a life in pursuit of stability. From stability, peace arises.
And so, peace on your house.
- technical writing
- Outreach ministry, one-on-one conversant, outdoor skills teacher
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