The Ferrier, who makes our ponies’ hooves look pretty, tells me that if he were to attend a Christian church, he’d come to my church. Why? Because he longs for joy. The church he is referring to is not even my home church but I do attend there on occasion to find joy and freedom also.
The first time you attend Cloverdale Christian Fellowship, or CFF for short, you’d wonder if you were in the right place as you are driving. It is located amidst factories in an industrial park, strategically located within walking distance to downtown Cloverdale where addiction is on display like rings in a jewellery store window. Many people in that community cannot remember a generation in their family that didn’t exist apart from government handouts. But that is the heart of CFF, meeting the greatest needs of the community.
Church meetings are held in the upper room of the office spaces they rent. Like the upper room where the disciples met, CFF waits expectantly on the Lord. Three truths I’ve observed by this body of believers: 1. Father God is good and without measure in his goodness towards his people; 2. The Holy Spirit is free and welcome to make his presence known; and 3. Jesus is coming back for a pure and spotless bride.
CCF believes that worship is more than 3-4 songs to get the congregation primed for the message. The worship time is extended because they invite and wait for God’s presence. To an outsider the worship time may appear like cacophony – shouts, laughing, people standing, sitting, sprawled on the floor, dancing in the front or waving flags around the back and sides. The little ones are also free to express worship before their Sunday School time that follows corporate worship. I haven’t visited many churches that are as free in worship as CFF. God has blessed their heart for worship and their leadership with his presence and his favour.
After worship and testimonies, a tithing declaration is spoken aloud by the whole congregation, remembering the goodness of God each week as we give back some of our offering to the Lord.
Finally, Randy Emerson will teach; he’s been preaching on John’s gospel for more than a year – so infinite is the word of God that you could never exhaust the new revelation. As he teaches, it’s as though he is having a personal conversation with a friend over coffee and we’re listening in. Randy brings depth to the Scripture and the revelation so that the people of God are trained for kingdom living.
At the close of the service, a team of seasoned prayer warriors will pray with those that need prayer – not to commensurate in the many trials that we face but to look to the face of Jesus and bring heaven’s reality into the situation.
Amen, and God continue to bless CFF.