Saturday, July 26, 2008

Mission Trip Send-Off

Last year I went with the youth group on their mission trip. This year, it’s a little different for me, because I’m not going with them. Lisa and I planned not to go, so that our 14-year-old daughter could have the blessing of not having her parents along for the ride.

It is a different experience, staying home, wondering what they will be doing every day. Tonight the youth will have their lock-in, and they will leave tomorrow morning at 4 a.m., driving to Indianapolis.

I’m praying for God to protect them, to teach them and to challenge them. I’m asking God to draw our youth closer to himself and closer to each other. I’m asking him to build their community. I’m praying for the adults to be stretched and to learn more about the heart of God. Last year was a life-changing experience for everyone, and I’m expecting God to continue his good work.

I’m also praying for the people they will serve. God knows who these people are, and he may use our group to answer many prayers. I’m praying for the other youth groups who will be working along side our kids. Many friendships begin through these mission trips.

It may be hard to stay put while others are away serving. It’s just a different experience for me. Prayer is essential for undergirding God’s work. I expect to spend a lot of time on my knees. And I expect God to make difference for eternity through our youth group’s mission trip.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Taking it to God

Our challenge of finding a new meeting place has been an interesting ride. Meeting space has always been difficult to find in Stokesdale. There is just nothing available for assembly space. Because Stokesdale does not have a sewage system, occupancy of any structure is limited by the septic system serving the building. Normal retail space doesn’t require nearly the septic capacity that assembly space requires. So we can’t use normal retail buildings.

Those restrictions are part of the reason that Crossroads has always been a nomadic people in Stokesdale. We have been in the Long House for more than five years, longer than we have met in any of the other eight places where we have worshipped.

So, as we look to a new place to meet, we are bringing our hearts before the Lord in a Concert of Prayer this Sunday evening. Finding our future meeting space is a supernatural issue. That is, God will have to provide it.

But God’s agenda is not to give us a building. His agenda is to bring our hearts closer to him. He can reveal himself with or without buildings. He can use the process of finding meeting space to help us see his glory. This is a God-sized project. Because God has called us together as a church, we believe that he wants us to gather to worship. We need him to lead us to the right situation.

Looking beyond our own needs, we want to know what God is doing in Stokesdale, and we desperately want to be a part of that. If we merely throw together another building and say, “Y’all come!” then we are not doing much to advance the kingdom of God. But if we surrender ourselves to God and say, “Here we are. Use us!” then God can do some truly amazing work.

God is not wimpy. He’s not limited. He wants to show his glory. And so we are seeking his face this Sunday evening.

Lord, please show us your glory.