Post 2024 Spring ESSC Reflections (6)

Attending the TJC Chicago Evangelical Service and Spiritual Convocation (ESSC), held biannually, is an experience that transcends mere participation; it’s an immersion into the depths of faith, a rejuvenation of the spirit, and a reaffirmation of one’s spiritual journey. I call it a marathon because there are multiple sermons, hymnal singings, prayers and meals from Thursday to Sunday. In one way, it is a marvelous focus period when you can be undistracted from worldly matters because you are confined in the chapel from 9 am to 9 pm doing nothing else except the above; in another way, it can be a challenge to be forced to put your daily routine/pleasure/personal necessities on hold.

The struggle is real, which we don’t hear often because we want to call it a spiritual feast, and one is not supposed to suffer from it. Nevertheless, I believe this very challenge is a reflection of our spiritual journey. It is how we deal with life as Christians. Not to mention, when I said “forced”, it is not really forced, like you’re put at gunpoint. You are free to come and go anytime you wish. No one is dictating how much you want to get out of the event. So the struggle is mental, “oh I am so sleepy right now”, and “I want to miss this session just to take a break”. God’s best gift for us, free will, is put to the test in these four days. And that is wonderful!

If it weren’t for the ESSC, I wouldn’t have flipped the bible so many times, sung so many hymns, pray so much in a matter of 4 days. Different speakers approach their messages differently. I would not have raised so many questions and pondered upon so many new thoughts. I appreciate this imposed ESSC schedule. Sometimes this is what man needs, a scripted, enforced routine to be with God so we can get our heads straight. God must have known this, therefore He created rigid laws in the Old Testament.

And yet, this is a time of fellowship and love, as Jesus demonstrated. We catch up with people from out of town. We finally have the time to pause and really get to know how everyone has been and what everyone is up to. Christianity is not just about bible knowledge, spirituality, faith and all that fancy cultivation. It is about people around us and our relationships with them. Church is about personal relationships, and how we connect with people has everything to do with our relationship with God.

In the end, I feel refreshed, re-grounded, and re-anchored, So yes, I will do this twice a year, every year.

Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”

Come join us to worship of God on Sabbath Day. Let us get recharged!

True Jesus Church
4N550 Church Road
Bensenville, IL 60106
 Google Maps

For online streaming, please click here.

For regular service hours, please click here.

Email us at