I’m a member of the Seventh-day Adventist church, which is a Christian denomination. Our church is currently holding it’s 60th General Conference session. Our church is organized democratically, where the 13 divisions of the world church come together and vote on important topics. It’s a good system that balances the value of the grass-roots church and local conference with having an overall system of administration that prevents schisms of the faith should one global region of the church have issues the other areas can see and help circumvent.
In honor of the General Conference session, my brother Chris tagged me in a blog post (as he was tagged by his friend Josephine in her post), to share some of the reasons why I like being an Adventist. There are a lot of different belief systems in the world. I’ve studied the Bible and discussed religion and philosophies with a lot of people. I’m glad to have landed where I am. :)
Here are three reasons I love being an Adventist.
1) Confidence in the belief system.
Ultimately, we all have to face the question, “How do you know what you believe is correct?” Adventism provides this through an accurate and compelling set of doctrines, i.e. beliefs about the Bible. More specifically, there is a solid understanding of the central, apocalyptic prophecies of the Bible found in Daniel and Revelation. I know that the Bible is true because the prophecies given hundreds of years before the predicted events have occurred with unerring accuracy. Complex things. Things that can’t be guessed at. Things that gave me so much confidence in the Scriptures, that my faith was never shaken in secular universities through the course of my undergraduate and graduate education.
2) The emphasis on health.
Adventists are healthy people. Living healthfully is right up there with Bible truths in the message we deliver to the world. We believe the healthier we are, the better our mind works, which is how God communicates to us. Many Adventists are vegetarians. Adventists are vegetarian hipsters. We were doing it before it was cool. We’ve basically been designated as a blue zone.
Not too long ago I was at a youth/young adult convention, and noted the contrast of thin, healthy people inside the convention center with the typical American population on the streets outside. It was stark. The difference is imprinted on my mind.
I’ve been a vegetarian all my life. I’ve never had to worry about weight gain or other lifestyle complications that affect so many others in my country and age group. I’m glad I get to start life with the right answers about health. I wish others could understand this the same way we do so that, if nothing else, their quality of life would improve.
3) The writings of Ellen White.
Ellen White played a significant role in the founding of the Adventist church. The Adventist church holds she had the gift of prophecy, and she wrote a lot of books on a lot of topics, some prophetic, some on health (see point #2), some on Scripture, and some on Christian living. I’ve read a lot of her material. More than most. I have utmost confidence in them. Her writings have been a significant benefit to my spiritual life. I would hate to think of my Christian experience without them because of their impact. It would kind of be like losing a family member. Check out Steps to Christ or The Great Controversy and see for yourself.
There are a lot of reasons why I love being an Adventist. I could keep going, but I’ll spare you.
In honor of the GC session, if you’re an Adventist, I hope you’ll take some time and think about what you like about your world church. If you’re not an Adventist, check us out or ask questions if you know one of us. We have a good time. Also, the long-term benefits are out of this world. ;) Sorry. That was low-hanging fruit.
Come soon, Lord Jesus. Prepare our hearts to be ready to meet you when you come.