Thursday, September 25, 2008
Word on the Street #15
I'm sorry that this email is so long overdue, or maybe it's just right on time, so forget the apology. Everything finds it's time in our Lord and nothing is late in the economy of God. I'm sure you've all been wondering some of the latest with me. A lot of changes and transition happening. As of late, I've not been living as a homeless person, but the transition from that season to the next is still in process and may continue to be for a long time yet. I'm not rushing the transition or assuming anything, but walking it by faith as Yahweh reveals His will to me. I'm far from being called away from the homeless and ministry among them, but God is shifting my focus to His work in our midst in Wilmore which I believe will be the future major platform of His ministry to and through me. A lot of service among the homeless will continue to happen, but I'm not living as one of them anymore. Currently, I'm living with a friend in Lexington, the director of Sonshine Mission who I've been helping over the past few weeks. I'm not in any formal sort of work yet, but my plan for now is to work temporary jobs and odd jobs because this is what God has revealed to me. I'm basically just getting by financially in this line of work. My only real bills are my student loans, my health insurance, and miscellaneous expenses along the way. It's not much right now which is fortunate. I know God will continue to provide for me as I'm faithful to the occupation He's laid before me. That occupation in a nutshell is to do temp work for financial provision, spending time in His presence, and walking out my life and ministry according to what I do receive in the place of encountering God. This is panning out in many ways through relationship with people, serving people like Anne at Sonshine Mission, intercession for people, open-air preaching and evangelistic prayer, building the prayer base and vision base which God's given in Wilmore and the resulting work from it, and several speaking engagements (something I'm still adjusting to, but learning a lot as I go). It's exciting and it's all unto the only real thing I care about in life: encountering the persons of God in intimate relationship, and bringing other people into that encounter. It produces the most incredible quality of life (John 10:10, "I come that they may have life and have it more abundant...") and liberation in the spirit of people ("He whom the Son sets free is free indeed"). Resulting from the overflow of this life in the spirit of people is lifestyle: righteousness and justice, the proclamation of God's gospel, covenantal community, the working of our eternal vocations for God's glory here on earth, and a host of other manifestations of God's kingdom in our lifestyles. That last paragraph is in some ways a really quick summary of the document that God is having my prayer and fellowship base in Wilmore piece together. Please pray for me as I speak at a Christian school tomorrow to a small group of middle-schoolers. I've spoken to this group once before and hope to more in the future too. The one real thing that God's put on my heart is to see hearts of these teens ignited as it says in Jeremiah: His word is like a fire in my bones and I am weary of holding it in. I want this to be a literal reality for these students and for the maturing Church. We all must seek these realities as we encounter God everyday. I need it more. Pray for my presence there, that it will be a conduit of God's presence. It's not about the words I say, but about God's working in that place through a simple vessel like me. Pray for my discernment, and eyes to see and ears to hear what the Spirit of God is saying. I've been learning very literally lately how much my entire existence suffers when I do not consume the Word of God and let it consume me. Jesus told us to eat His body and drink His blood to be saved and this is an able physical metaphor for what we must do in our spirits. We must consume Jesus so that His person and mind is developed inside of our spirits by the power of His Holy Spirit. We consume Jesus by encountering the Person of Jesus in prayer and the Scripture. If our times with God include nothing more that reading the Bible and simply saying a prayer we miss so much, because the point is to come into living fellowship with God, the literal Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! Andrew Murray's commentary on Hebrews, The Holiest of All, articulates this well; I'd encourage you to read it. I got busy for two weeks and didn't spend much time with God and that beat me up. Serving is one of my spiritual gifts and I love it, but I never want to starve myself from the Spirit of God again. When I opened the Word again, it was like the most refreshing water poured on my spirit and soul and body and I realized how much I need it to be the fabric of my life and existence, literally. I share this to edify you, the body. This newsletter isn't about the events I go to and the exciting programs that are happening. It's about our corporate edification for God has called His people into a community governed by covenant with Him and others. It's a sacred trust that we will be eternally blessed to walk in. Keep upcoming speaking engagements and times of relationship with people in your prayers. Keep our nation and our presidential election in your prayers. Intercede before God for repentance to fall like rain upon us. These are crucial and strategic issues for Christians to engage with the Lord about. Keep praying for the names I've given you in the past even though you don't know them. These people are of infinite importance to God and I do well to remember that. God doesn't play favorites or show preference. He's not willing for any to perish. Pray that I wouldn't show partiality, but that I would fully love for God's sake.