Friday, July 22, 2011
(day twenty-nine) breakthrough city... talk about some freedom ya'll!
As most of you know, I spent the last 3 days at a camp in Siloam Springs, Ar. Thank you so much for lifting us up in prayer. It's hard to explain what actually went on the last few days, but i'll try my best. It was yet another prayer request answered to be spending time at a summer camp, loving on some kids, visiting with family, and being able to have a reunion with some of my best friends. I would've been so happy just being present, but God had much BIGGER things in store.
Beau, Phil and I led a breakout session the first day called, "Creativity and Missions". We had a idea of what were going to talk about, however...God had something much cooler up His sleeve! They expected about 25 students for our class, but about 60 showed up that day. We truly felt like the first thing for them to REALLY get... before they could ever do "missions", is for them to know how MUCH God loves them. Because like the speaker said, "You can't give what you don't have." Part of what religion has done is create a performance base acceptance of God's love. Many have been raised with this agenda, and now genuinely desire to "live for God" but don't even know how to simply receive His love. We want others to be "saved", but we ourselves sometimes walk around in our own slavery. It's sometimes quite hard to see through the glasses we've been given by the world that we don't actually have to DO anything for God's love. He FIRST loved us, and He loved us before we were even born... so what makes us think that we have to perform a certain way to gain this love?
Once this begins to sink in and the lies are exposed by truth, healing begins... and freedom enters in. God's already there, He just wants to be moving in and through us with His power and glory. When we accept His love and surrender our own lives, it's an opportunity for a constant flow of His goodness and mercy. Unfortunately, instead of listening to what He says about us in the living word... we believe what the enemy says about us through the world's mouth. The lies burrow deep inside and we become numb to the kind words of our Savior. Being an adopted kid of the MOST HIGH KING seems like a distant fairy tale instead of reality.
We trade His throne room for a jail cell, His crown for shackles, His robe for rags and His beautiful FREEDOM for paralyzing slavery. How on earth can we help others break free when we are just as tangled in this web of deception? And the worst of it is... sometimes we think we actually deserve that!!! Oh my goodness. Here's the thing: we very much would deserve it, but we don't because we have a Savior who took on all the shame, guilt, and sin of the world on the cross. His blood has already taken care of our debt, yet we still blame ourselves for succumbing to the lies.
I saw so many jr. high, high schoolers, and parents who came seeking God's divine love and power. They felt trapped in their own body and desired nothing more than to serve Him with their lives. How frustrating this can be for all of us. After that first day of speaking we began to see bits of breakthrough. It seemed like the speaker's talks went hand in hand with what God had spoken through us. That next day we had about 100 kids in our breakout session. This day we truly felt the Holy Spirit running through our veins and knew God had some extra special goodies for them. Afterward, so many came up and wanted prayer. I saw one after another healed from these lies. And NO LIE, they seriously ran outside shouting FREEEEEDOM like a crazy person! It was SO AWESOME!!!! I really wish i could share all of the stories, and maybe i will eventually... but one in particular was very special to me.
One night during worship I went to pray for a young girl about 13 years of age. As I was praying she began crying. I asked her to pray and as she did she mentioned a guilt she was holding onto from her aunt's death. Wow! This little girl (and some family) was blaming herself!!! Can you believe it? I spoke right into her face the TRUTH of what God says about her, how much He loves her and how it's not her fault! It was so beautiful to see this precious thing dancing around with her arms lifted high praising the one who has released her from bondage!!! I got about 15 hugs a day from her too!!! How cute.
Another kid was upset because He loved to pray, but felt like His prayers weren't making it to God anymore. I knew there had to be some lie that was causing this barrier... so we prayed for him and he went on his way. That night He ran up to us and said... "i'm free i'm free i'm free!!!", with the biggest smile i've ever seen. He proceeded to tell us that God revealed to him the lie he had been believing. He said, "God doesn't care what I say or how i say it... He just wants to hear my voice." Whoooooah. Crazy revelation for this kid. So amazing. It's hard, even at our age, to know that the God of the universe gets excited when we simply spend time in His presence.
So many more stories, but I have to sleep at some point :)
B90: (2 Kings 19- 1 Chronicles 4:12) Probably one of the most fascinating things to me in 2 Kings is at the very end when Evil-Merodach king of Babylon graciously frees Jeroiachin king of Judah from a very long time in prison. (Chapter 25: 27-29) It says the King spoke kindly to him and gave him the best seat in the house dining regularly at the King's table eating the King's food! He took off His prison clothes and replaced them with clean, nice smelling clothes i'm sure. It even says that the king took care of every single need He had for the rest of His life.
If this earthly King could bestow this much grace and love on another human being, how much more would our heavenly King bestow on His own children!! He does desire to see us completely free, madly in love with Him, and living out this bold yet humble love to the world every single day! He wants us to sit with Him at His table so we can feast on all His goodness, which He never withholds from us!!! He really does want to supply every single need for us. All He asks is that we allow Him to transform our lives with His love as we trust His word is true, take the lies captive, and live in the full complete freedom offered in His kingdom.
How many of us have believed the lies that have kept us trapped for too long? How many of us have quickly let fear or anxiety determine lack of trust? I encourage EVERYONE to search deep within to find any tiny thing you may have believed along the way that you know is not true about yourself because of what God says. This lie needs to be attacked and destroyed. When it is, you will find long awaited healing... and know without a shadow of a doubt are now free. ABSOLUTELY NOTHING is too big or small for God. Like the speaker said this week, "If we make Jesus really small our problems will seem really big, if we make Jesus really big... those same problems will seem tiny and way less important."
I'll leave you with something my good friend Beau just posted on His FB wall that blew me away, "You never see Jesus save without healing, heal without revealing truth, or teach without transforming."