by Gerald Har
Skepticism used to fill my mind whenever I heard the word “awakening”. I have come to realise that Christian ministries that claim to “awaken” people have the tendency to focus on the outward revival, without the basic spiritual disciplines of prayer and study of the Word of God that every disciple of Christ must have.
Why focus on an obscure character, Archippus? Is this ministry trying to teach some biblical heresy off an obscure character? Is this yet another ministry that is focused on some charismatic movement and spiritual high, without properly grounding people in the Word and teaching people to be led by the Spirit?
Despite these doubts, since Daryl has given his best endorsement on this ministry, I sought an opening from the Lord to get connected with Archippus Awakening and Brother Henson. In February 2019, I finally had the opportunity to speak personally with Brother Henson after an Awakened Aligned Assigned (AAA) seminar. During the seminar, as I listened to Brother Henson, I was aligning with what he said about the church being fast asleep and apathetic to the sign of the times, and thus operating without an urgency that the Lord Jesus is coming again. I identified strongly with his observation that we have too many activities and a lack of empowered individuals on kingdom assignments. Somehow we think that “only the pastor has the anointing”. A church that is in slumber is one that “plays church” (and looks culturally Christian) but isn’t ready to live and die for the King.
Right after the seminar, when I spoke with Brother Henson, I knew I was speaking with a person who also critically examines his walk with God and his ministry. Indeed, I had the sense that Brother Henson is truly into developing people and aligning with the King, and he is not just trying to grow a Christian movement without proper discipleship.
Soon after, I got a copy of his books “Say to Archippus” and “Alignment Check”. I finished reading both books and found Brother Henson’s understanding of the Christian walk holistic and well-rounded. More critically, Brother Henson is interested in a proper biblical grounding and alignment with what is taught by our Lord Jesus Christ, not just a superficial “awakening” of people that usually leads to people falling back asleep.
I am aware that I do not choose what kind of assignments God gives to me. He knows best. Growing up in Singapore, I attended most of our classes taught in English, so I have always wondered why I was involved in Chinese-based ministries in Singapore. For example, I worship at the Chinese congregation of my church in Singapore, and I attended the Chinese Varsity Christian Fellowship in National University of Singapore. I now understand why! Moving over to the University of Delaware (in an obscure part of USA) for my graduate studies, I attend a predominantly Chinese church, and hence am in contact with many Chinese Christians and pre-believers from China. Had the Lord not put me in contact with these Chinese ministries in Singapore, I would never be able to work alongside these Chinese Christians and provide them a kingdom perspective of what it means to be awakened and aligned with the King. God uses the Archippus Awakening message to empower me as I move on my assignment to mentor believers new to the Christian faith.
At the same time, I am awakened to the fact that the temptation to see that only “Christian work” is kingdom work is very real. Kingdom work is more than just involvement in church and my own personal devotions and prayer life. Recreation can be done for the glory of God too, and that’s where the Archippus Awakening message comes through for me. Every aspect of our life; church, recreation, and even rest, is to be lived out in alignment with God’s kingdom purposes as well as with a mentality that is anything but aimless.
Ps Henson writes in Alignment Check, “When your identity is clear, when your heart is concerned with kingdom matters and sensitive to the urgency of the times, when you know and are moving purposefully on our assignment, your entire Christian life will be anything but aimless.”
Imm Sim from Bukit Panjang Methodist Church puts it this way, “To know my Archippus assignment has been very liberating. It translates to how I live day to day, and I know for certain what roles I must take up and what I can shake off.”
Ever since Gerald himself has been awakened, he has been actively looking for people to get aligned with God. Gerald is currently a PhD student in the University of Delaware and is actively involved in campus evangelism to international students and a predominantly Chinese local church near his university. He looks forward to distance-calling his girlfriend every so often!