No one can dispute the raw power of God! When someone sees a miracle they can’t deny it. Often people ask me “how did it go last night?” referring to our Tuesday night outreach event. It seems as though I always respond the same way – it was amazing! Is it always amazing? Yes!
You just have to experience for yourself to understand what I mean. The reasons I say that is because what is not amazing about seeing the hand of God move in such a powerful way?
I am amazed:
• That God would actually open Heaven and make it available to us.
• That miracles, signs and wonders as well as healings and deliverances actually happen right in front of my eyes.
• That we have been averaging 35 – 45 volunteers each week.
• That we have such dedication from the core base of volunteers that would spend so much time preparing a meal to feed 300 people.
• That there are 300 people who show up to eat it.
• That there are worship leaders and preachers willing to come and share their gifts.
• That there are so many willing to give away their “good” clothes to those with nothing.
• That God has given us everything we need to do this outreach.
I really could keep going, but like I said – you just have to come down and experience it for yourself.
Last Tuesday night Dean Swenson and his brother Swen came downtown to the city and led the most amazing worship. They had everyone engaged and participating. What courage! Seriously, this is not easy – I know. But they did an outstanding job. Dean also gave an amazing message about sleep walking through our day.
The stories I am privileged to hear that most may not blow me away. These stories are often times the precious portraits that God paints on the wall of the heart of those who come to serve. They often are unspoken never to be revealed. But on occasion, I am given a gift from someone who tells me what God did to them on that night.
A personal story from my night on Tuesday is about a young man named “Dre”. Everything was set – the tent was up, music playing, food was prepared, and then we all gathered around in a circle to bless the food. 100 people pulled together in a huge circle of love to pray to the living God who has blessed us – what a sight! After prayer, I was walking back toward the tent when a man yelled out to me “Hey, can I talk to you?” I turned around to see a man standing in the middle of a very long line. I said, sure – what is on your heart. He walked right out of line – losing his place. To him, this was more important. He told me a heartbreaking story about watching his dad die in his arms two weeks prior. I am not sure how – I didn’t ask, but he did say he had his dad’s blood all over him. Dre had spent the last two weeks in a psyche ward at a hospital on suicide watch. After telling me this through his tears he said that he still wants to die. He is all alone now and can’t live with his mother who uses alcohol and drugs. He was in anguish. I will say that when you come across someone in real anguish, you know it. He was so sad and deeply depressed. I looked around to find Dave Knapp. Dave has a way with people like no other. I couldn’t find him – then Lenel (who was praying nearby) noticed that I was distressed. She came over as if on cue from God. I asked if she would bring Dre over to the prayer tent. Then, someone yelled out – “here is Dave” and so I introduced everyone and we went to the prayer tent. A few other prayer warriors joined us in the tent. I felt the presence of God and knew that He said Dre was in the right hands. So, I left. Later in the evening as the night was winding down – I heard someone yell out my name. I turned around and saw Dre coming toward me. He had a smile from ear-to-ear. I asked him what was going on. He thanked me for getting those people to pray for him. He said that he has never experienced that kind of love and that he feels awesome! As I was talking to him Dean Swenson, Doreen Doan and others had gathered around. As Dre was talking I noticed his smile. I said Dre, you have the most amazing smile – at which point it got even bigger.
That is what I am talking about – a portrait that God gave to me and He gives this to each person who comes out to experience Heaven on earth. You can have one too if you join us.
I also have struggle in finding a way to say thank you to the people who come. Partially because I realize that the reason they come is because the Lord has drawn them there. But, I want you all to know what a privilege it is to serve with you. Thank you!