Thursday, May 13, 2010

When There Is No Empty Day

How’s your schedule? Is it like mine? Non-stop demands, limitless emails, phone calls, tasks, family to pay attention to, little league games, school concerts, church, friends to care for and other problems or illnesses that affect you. Is it even possible to find an empty day?

I have been wrestling with this lately. Most of the things are good, but still there is a drain when you have to be “constantly on” so to speak. I am faithful to my time with the Lord, which is my sanity, but once I leave that time, it feels like a flood breaks and drowns me. I have found out three things that I must commit to do:

1) Practice mini Sabbaths throughout the day. A moment here, a moment there. I stop; I close the office door or take a 5-minute walk and breath in the Lord’s presence.
2) A monthly day of solitude. All technology off for the day, the challenge at the heart of this is: Do I believe I am God? Or do I believe God is God. Do I believe that I run my ministry or that God runs my ministry? I suspect we often believe we are God.
3) Sit with friends weekly. Share and pour out our hearts. Confess our anxieties and pray together and for one another.

I know we probably know these things. That is never the problem. The question is do we practice these things? I pray for you and myself this Psalm:

My heart is not proud O Lord. My eyes are not haughty. I do not concern
myself with great matters or things too difficult for me. But I have
stilled and quieted my soul like a content child at its mother’s
breast, like a contented child is my soul within me. O Israel!
O Capernaum! Put your hope in the Lord both now and forever more.
Psalm 131

Seeking the Lord as my contentment,


Friday, May 7, 2010

Proclaim Jesus!

The apostles left the Sanhedrin rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name. Day after day in the temple courts and from house to house they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the Good News that Jesus is the Christ! (Acts 5:41-42)

I am studying the Book of Acts. It is amazing! Pentecost comes and Peter gives a club talk and all of a sudden they have a Campaigner group of 3000. After this, the first ministry act post Pentecost was the healing of a man with a disability at the Gate Beautiful near the Temple. Isn’t this just like God? A person with a disability daily ignored and passed by and seen as a wretch, has basically a sign over him saying “Beautiful.” On this day, Peter and John do not pass him by, but instead heal him in Jesus’ name.

Now things really start to get out of control. Peter and John get in trouble for preaching Jesus while 2000 more are added to their number. The disciples are flogged and get this! They go away rejoicing that they could suffer for the sake of the Name. They report all this to their community. They don’t get into a planning session about how they are going to care for 5000 new believers. Instead they pray for more boldness to speak the Name. They pray for more signs and wonders from the Holy Spirit. They pray for a greater telling of the Good News and more fruit. Then their meeting place is shook and the Holy Spirit is poured out again. Wow!

Does this blow your mind like it does mine? Their strategy seems to be simple and unspoken amongst them: Proclaim Jesus! Fellowship with each other daily and pray for more boldness, signs and wonders. And wrapped up in all this is an incredible sensitivity to the Holy Spirit to let the Spirit blow and flow as He wills. They stay out of the way. They seek to fall into this wild raging river of the Holy Spirit. They are relaxed with being out of control and not knowing what is going to happen next.

There is also a beautiful sense of unselfconsciousness. They have truly died to self and are alive to God and each other. Isn’t it true when we are swept up into God’s business we have little time to be annoyed by one another? What does this all mean? I am not fully sure but I am going to concentrate on waiting on the Holy Spirit and then in His fire and wind around my life doing three things:

1) Proclaim Jesus to Kids’ boldly
2) Fellowship daily with fellow staff
3) Pray for signs and wonders

Holy Spirit fall on all of us in YL Capernaum. Stretch out your hand with signs, wonders, healings and miracles. Holy Spirit set YL Capernaum ablaze as a wild fire throughout Young Life and beyond. O Lord, add thousands of kids with disabilities to our number. Grant us boldness to proclaim your Name. Let our fellowship be sweet and deep. Immerse us in prayer and we rejoice in all this when we suffer for your Name. We are yours. Let us be resilient! Let us glorify you and rejoice that we bear your Name – Christ-ones!

Out of Control,