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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

One Step Ahead

(For the next few weeks, I will be in Bosnia. Our team is going to post regular updates on our church blog- but I will also post them here. I will also be posting a few of my own thoughts on occasion, or pictures, so be sure to check back!)

When Jesus said, "Come, follow me!" he was serious.

Too often, we hear this as an invitation to study and learn the historical life of Jesus in order to replicate how He lived. But I get the feeling that Jesus had more in mind. I think He actually wants us to follow Him now- to look ahead, get a sense of where He's going, and set our feet on the same path.

As I prepare for this journey to Bosnia, I can't help but feel that as a church, we are doing just this. From the first days of our partnership with Bosnia, we have sensed God at work. God has been orchestrating and arranging things in a divine way before we even become aware of it. I have had a strong feeling all along the way that He is always one step ahead of us.

And so this trip has at its source real inspiration from God. I have been mindful of this as I undertake the mammoth amount of tasks that go into a costly international expedition. Whenever I have been tempted to think the trip is too much work, or too much money, I remind myself of where God has been in this journey. Always a step ahead. We haven't been praying and asking God to bless our efforts- to join us where we are at. No, we have been asking God to give us the courage to follow Him!

He is leading us to Bosnia. Why? I am not exactly sure. And I'll bet that the first disciples of Jesus had similar feelings. They knew he was calling, they could see where he was leading, but they had no idea what was about to happen to them. It was a risk to follow into such unknowns, but their faith was rewarded as they walked with the King of Kings.

I hope that you, at least in some small way, can feel connected to our trip. It really isn't about us- God is going to use it for far more. We'll find out together exactly what that is!

May you find that on your journey, Jesus is always one step ahead of you. And may you have the courage and the strength to follow Him.


Wednesday, June 02, 2010

You Can't Have It!

For those of you connected to EHA, you know that we've had a few randomly scheduled worship nights at the church lately. For those of you who've attended, you know how powerful they have been!

Last week, one person came up to the "open mic" and shared something that has stuck with me. She came up and made a declaration that more of us should be making. It went something like this:
"I just want to say to the Devil, "You can't have my marriage. You can't have my child. You can't have my church. We must be on the verge of something good here at this church, and Satan is mad. He's thinking, 'okay, one worship night is a fluke, but they won't come again.' And here we are and he must be mad. We are on the verge of something. And to think, I almost stayed home and watched American Idol. How stupid do I feel!"

I love the fact that this was shared from the heart, and that she had the boldness to declare her marriage, her family, and her church off-limits to the enemy. What would happen if Christ-followers took up the offensive against Satan like this more often? It's sad that we can get caught up in being on the offensive against political or cultural ideals and miss the true source of evil.

So, where do you want to say, "Satan, you can't have it!" Because greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world.

Are we on the verge of something as a church? I don't know. But if God is putting this kind of Spirit in our people, I know that good things will come from that!

On a journey with you-