I completely relate to how Aaron describes his emotion during the 2004 Dedication of Remnant Fellowship’s Church Building and Grounds. I felt it too. Opening the doors to this beautiful property felt like we were all a part of the Heavens ushering in a new era of Church history. There was incredible energy, enthusiasm and joy in the air. What we had learned through Weigh Down Ministries had completely set us free from horrible indulgences and vices—anger, lusts, obesity, depression, broken marriages—and pointed us to healing and renewed purpose. Now God was gathering the like-minded, young and old, and collectively establishing a place of worship, completely void of hypocrisy and full of a genuine love for God and each other. This indeed was one of the best nights of all of our lives.
However, anyone even remotely familiar with Remnant knows that the establishment of the Church was not without incredible attack and media attention. Gwen Shamblin had bravely stepped out of mainstream Christianity to establish Remnant Fellowship Church…and this came with an onslaught of personal attack on her reputation and her family.
To this day, the range of lies and accusations range from simply laughable to just downright maddening.
LIE: That’s the “diet church”…I heard that everyone walks on treadmills while listening to the sermon.
TRUTH: (I literally heard this one just a couple months ago) I’ve been a member since 2003 and can confidently report that there have been no treadmill sightings. Actually, to stay healthy, I haven’t relied on a treadmill in years, thanks to what I have learned about health and wellness and not being driven by “have to” exercise here.
LIE: Someone told me that you guys have your own vineyard and only drink wine that grows from those grapes.
TRUTH: Nope, no vineyard. But thank you for the very interesting suggestion.
However, by far the most maddening category of blatant false accusals have been directed toward our younger demographic—the children—and how they are being raised. Currently, our membership has approximately 500 youth under the age of 20. On nearly any given day, the Church property is scattered with very happy young voices filling the air. Visit the homes of Remnant families and you will hear the sounds of peace, love and laughter.
The irony of the attacks Remnant has endured is this…
Even though it is the clear presentation of Scripture and applicable principles that drew the seeking hearts here, very often visitors report that it is witnessing the children that convinced them that God’s presence is inarguably among us.
Visitors comment that they have never before seen children like this. They are awed by their beautiful love and disposition…the respect shown to their parents, the eagerness to jump up and lend a hand, the friendships that are not hindered by age or race, the love for one another and a display of a genuine love for God that supersedes their ages.
With that said, how does one discern truth from lies in an age of countless seemingly valid resources of information…and not fall prey to one of the top Ten Commandments that clearly states not to give false testimony? In Luke 7:35 Jesus Christ is quoted as saying, “Wisdom is proved right by all her children.”
So, what are the children being taught here, and furthermore…how do they feel about being ‘raised in Remnant?’”
Outside of our Church community and homes, the youth are quickly promoted in the workplace and honored by their teachers and coaches at school. Even the youngest of children are quite often recognized as “standouts” in the classrooms for their respect toward their teachers and love for their classmates.
I will always remember the afternoon when my son was in kindergarten and his teacher pulled me aside making this comment, “The teachers here know who the kids are that go to your Church. They stand out from the others…they look me in the eye when I speak. They are quick to follow instruction and so kind to the others.” I thanked her and explained that their behavior and outlook is a direct result from what they are being taught at Remnant and then how their parents are living out God’s love in the home. She smiled and said, “Well, if there are any Remnant children entering kindergarten next year, please have their parents request my classroom.” What a compliment and what a praise to God that is! It is an honor to share the TRUTH about being “raised in Remnant.”