My time at Capernwray is two weeks to close. As the end draws near, I am realising many things about this place that are so unique and nearly all of them involve the people. It is amazing to be in a room of 150 people and know without a doubt that nearly all of them love you because Jesus loves them. I love 1 John 4. It is a chapter of the Bible where the apostle John attempts to convey who God is in His deepest essence. When I read it, I can nearly see John sitting there thinking to himself, “how can I explain God to the church? How do I make it clear?” And then he writes out the next fourteen verses which go something like this…
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: he sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Saviour of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgement: in this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
We love because God first loved us. Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother or sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.
This passage tells us all about how God totally embodies the characteristic of love. All of his traits flow out from this one fact. If I know God, as well as the 152 other students living in this place we call home, then we know his love. I am going to boldly state that if you know God’s love, you will want to show it to others. That is why Capernwray Bible School is such an amazing place. It is a body of students looking to support you, encourage you, pray with you and for you, be kind to you, give you things, and ultimately be God’s love to you. What an amazing place of encouragement for Christians! There are a few places on the Sarah Girard Heritage Tour (the places where my faith was impacted), and I can tell you for sure: Capernwray is one of them. As I think about going home and leaving this place, my sorrow is evident. I am really going to miss it here. I find solace in the fact that I still get two more weeks in this place, with these people. What a blessing. I can only praise God for giving me this time here and allowing me to make such amazing friends. It will be really difficult leaving and not having them around at all times to talk to and turn to for help, but I know that I have made more sincere and genuine friends here than I have ever made in my entire life and I thank God for them each and every day.