Like many of you, I am a covenant child, and I grew up with this acronym so frequently around me that it was practically painted on the back of my eyelids. It was the answer to the question, “What church do you go to?” or “Why are you wearing that red shirt with the weird banner on the front?” or “Why does your church have stained glass windows with representations of pulpits in them?”
It has become a definition (RP family, RP girls, RP boys, RP banner, RPIC, etc.) and a distinction (“Oh, you’re the funny people that sing psalms!”). It was used so much that if the letters R and P are next to each other, the rest of the letters—CNA—come out of my mouth like a jack-in-the-box. But I never really thought about what it meant to be part of a denomination that has such an overwhelming influence on so many of us; that is, until one mild night in the sometimes-temperate southern Indiana winter.
That night people from all over the Great Lakes-Gulf region of the U.S. had converged for the 2016-2017 CYPU Winter Conference for the Great Lakes-Gulf Presbytery (an even longer acronym). Pastor David Hanson was giving a series of five lectures on what Christian living means. It means that, as God’s chosen people, we are to do what Christ commands us to do and align ourselves with His example and guidelines. He is our cornerstone. We are His people. And He is fashioning His Church based on His own example. This was the gist of the ...