SPIRITUAL COVERING / RELATIONSHIP / PARTNERSHIP:
People often think of covering in terms of accountability, protection, spiritual care or administrative authority and while it can or often does include these things, it is actually much more than this. Covering is a spiritual principle, not a denominational idea, and that is why when a house church begins it cannot afford to ignore this. Many organized forms of Christianity have an administrative covering arranged, but the Bible does not show covering in this way. Covering in the Bible is a relationship instead.
Examples of this are Elijah with Elisha, Jesus and the disciples, Paul with Timothy and Moses and Joshua. We often don’t realize that these are practical examples of spiritual covering. The way in which Paul wrote to the churches and loved and admonished them is an example of the practicalities of covering too.
The Bible speaks of us as being babies when we are born again, but we are supposed to mature. How can we mature however without someone who is a part of our lives helping us? The Bible tells children to honor their parents and this is because parents are a covering to their children. Parents love, protect, watch over and provide for their children, and they also discipline and advise them. However parenting (or good parenting) all occurs within the boundaries of a relationship that is healthy for all involved. As children grow they learn to help, support and be a blessing to their parents also.
Spiritual covering should provide similar benefits and blessings, but is found within the context of a relationship. It is not something an administrator can setup but is something that happens in the heart. God intends for everyone to be under spiritual covering so that they can mature, bless others, receive blessing and so that there can be a flow of love and grace through the body of Christ.
If you begin a house church, you too will need to be in a relationship that provides spiritual covering. Don’t rush into this, but prayerfully consider who God is placing in your life to bring blessing, grace and to also watch over and care for you. For God’s blessing to come to a home church it must be under spiritual covering. When you have chosen, then submit and be a blessing. Don’t take benefit for yourself without being a blessing in return. Be a blessing and you will receive greater blessing back. Serve those God places over you.
One marvelous benefit of being a true spiritual son or daughter (one who has a spiritual father) is that it provides a spiritual inheritance. Rather than having to work to lay a foundation you will be able to build on the foundation laid by another. Do not ignore this vital principle. Covering is not meant to restrict you, but to bless you.
*Keep in mind that church is not a building, but people.