People become ordained through the Universal Life Church for many reasons. These are some of the stories of why people become ordained and some essays from some of the seminary courses they've taken.
Why People Become Ordained
Here are some stories about why people became ordained through the Universal Life Church and have trained through our online seminary. They readily share their stories and knowledge to help you add to yours.
In the beginning, God created the first couple to reflect God's glory. The instructor, guided by "The Course of Miracles," believes that sin came about because the Son of God forgot to laugh. I differ as I am guided by the Holy Scriptures which teaches that sin began in the heart of Lucifer (aka, Satan, the Great Red Dragon, the serpent) who rebelled against God and later came to deceive and destroy humanity.
That said, I do believe in many of the principles found in the course that help a person to go back to the "original design" of God – to reflect Divine Glory. It does require a change of thinking for the Christian. The Apostle Paul often taught the churches that they were to "put off the old man," that is the old way of living in fear, guilt and shame. They were then encouraged to put on the "new man" which is the character and conduct of a follower of Christ. It is a new way of life that is grounded in love and fueled by the Holy Spirit.
In becoming a channel for the "Miracle Maker" (God by way of the Holy Spirit working in each Christian), meditation is a good tool. From the book of Psalms the reader is instructed: "Be angry, and do not sin. Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. Selah" (Psalms 4:4 NKJV). This puts the focus off of self and then upon God. This allows one to gain closeness to the Divine and seek out God in fellowship. In this process, we learn to let go of selfish desires and replace them with divine desires. In this time of prayer we can grow more in love with God and God's creation. Note the Apostle Paul wrote about proper desire:
"And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ; having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God" (Philippians 1:9-11 NASB).
We are not created to be aimless robots. We are created for purpose and thus we should pursue lives of purpose. Purpose gives direction. It also requires intentionality. If I believe my purpose is to create music that pleases others, then I cannot just sit around wishing. I need to practice and practice and practice. I need to set aside all distractions and focus. This requires attention. A master mechanic becomes one because he or she pays attention – to the big picture and to the small details. The grandeur of majestic buildings, the paintings that catch life with unique expressions, the song with that tune we cannot shake, and the modern gadgets all around us are the results of the wonderful alchemy of purpose, intention, and attention blending together.
God had a vision when God created the universe. As a reflection of Divine glory, we are to be visionary. This means to look forward. The past can be a trap if we allow past mistakes to bury ourselves in guilt. Learn the lessons but forgive the mistakes and sins. Move one!
Channels for God to work miracles through do not work alone. We are "lone rangers" but a body connected to the Head – Jesus Christ. Help is offered, should be requested, and to be taken. Help can come from a friend, a co-worker, a family member, a stranger, and the Holy Spirit. To be created in the image of the Triune God, a community of Three Persons, is to be created into a community of God's family. Our greatest help is God. We sometimes don't like the answers given – but who truly knows best? God.
Miracles can occur when we allow God to work. This requires following God's instructions. I met an evangelist who served as a pastor to "shantytown" in lower Mississippi. His congregation never grew above one hundred. He did many baptisms a year. He would go visiting the people and often would ask those living in the shanties, "Do you want to see miracles in your life?" He would invite them to a Bible study. He told me, "And they saw miracles. When they quit smoking and drinking alcohol, they had a miracle – they had money to pay the rent and electric bill. When they quit doing drugs – another miracle as they could buy groceries! When they cleaned up and applied for jobs – a miracle! They were hired. When they saved money – a miracle! They were able to buy something without stealing from others. We saw miracles all the time!"
The miracles are there. We just need to adjust ourselves to be the channels for God's blessings, pray for help, become more purposeful, and stand back to watch – another miracle!
The ULC, run by Rev. Long, has created a chaplaincy program to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church materials. I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's Seminary since the beginning and have loved watching the continual growth of the seminary.