This morning’s devotions were so amazing that they were probably the reason we came to South America. That might be overstating it, but man this was one amazing morning.
Before our trip to Colombia, Josh, Ed and I decided to do devotions each morning of the trip. Ed had been having some of his Colombian friends join him on occasion, prior to our arrival. This morning, a young kid, named Nick, joined us. Ed gave us a little background on the kid, who is 18. “He’s tough, doesn’t do hugs and always looks like he wants to kill you.”
“Wha?…can’t wait to meet him?”
Now, the night before, the three of us had some misunderstandings that didn’t disappear in the night as we slept. They were there bright and early, fresh and ready to wreak havoc on our day when we awoke. In my opinion the enemy was doing everything in his power to make sure that our conversations with Nick didn’t happen.
Our devotions came from 2 Peter and John 1. This morning, a lot applied to my life, but I wasn’t prepared for what was about to happen. Ed and Nick had been studying and talking in one room and Josh and I in another. When we finally joined up together, I shared first. I began to read. No sooner than I had begun to read that the Holy Spirit began to give me revelations for Nick. Glitch number 1; I speak English and he speaks Spanish. Thank goodness for Ed, our faithful translator.
At some point in the conversation Nick said, I have been studying with Ed for two weeks and you come in here in a few minutes and give me a summary of my life and the last two weeks. Newsflash: It’s not me kiddo. Buckle up! The Holy Spirit in the building and has a few things He would like to say.
What ensued was a jaw-dropping dialogue from the Holy Spirit; a heavenly download from God’s super computer into Nick’s life. Nick would come up with something that he struggled with or a question that he had and the Holy Spirit would bring a scripture to my mind. This happened repeatedly. It was one of the most, amazing exchanges with the Holy Spirit that I have experienced.
A little back story… Ed was living at the Big Fish House in Central Florida, in an effort to continue his journey with Jesus and away from Same Sex Attraction. His stay was approaching the end, but Ed wanted to stay in the states through Christmas. We felt that God had made it clear that he was to travel home for a few weeks and join us in January 2014. It was a hard decision and Ed was sad to go. Ultimately, God is in control. After the conversation with Nick this morning, I told Ed that I felt like this was the reason he had to come home: a rescue mission of sorts. Nick is learning a great deal about God and the bible. God told Nick some hard hitting stuff through his conversations with Ed. The Holy Spirit spoke through me to confirm a lot of their conversations.
There are plenty of people in need of rescue like Nick. Two types of people come to mind: those who want to be rescued and cry out and those who for whatever reason, choose to remain stuck. Our friend Nick falls into the former category. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of you do as well. Let me share some of what the Holy Spirit showed me.
First off, if you have been human for more than 10 minutes you are probably in need of rescue. The bible says that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God and that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. So let me tell you what I told Nick. You gotta be okay with letting God rescue you. You gotta lay down your pride. God allows plenty of trials and temptations to come our way without us throwing in self derived trials and tribulations with the way we live. Why make the path to God even longer by creating situations with your stubbornness that God would have never chosen for you. God will rescue you if he has to, but I think His first choice would be to celebrate your obedience…the first time around.
Second. Slow down. Fast moving cars kills people. Slow moving cars allow the driver to see what is in his future from half a mile away. Paul calls our Christian walk a race so that we keep our eyes fixed on the finish line, not so that we finish faster than everyone else. Life is no good when you are standing alone at the finish line. Unless you are the most selfish, competitive human being on the planet or are competing in the Olympics, I think in our Christian walk it’s better to have a crowd to share your victory with than to celebrate as the loneliest winner.
The Holy Spirit shared that our weary hearts are like vast warehouses full of junk. They are filled with so much stuff, that even God has a tough time finding his way around. However, God has promised us many blessings, but He needs an empty warehouse to store them in. He needs full access to our whole heart. If the warehouses of our hearts are full of junk, where is God supposed to store his blessings? We need to clear out the junk and make room for the new shipments that God promises as we walk in obedience to his Word.
Last of all, the Holy Spirit said, “He’s got trust issues”. Couldn’t that be said of everyone on the planet? Most of us say that we trust God, but we don’t really. Proverbs 3:5&6 says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.” God is trustworthy. Nick got a small deposit of that, this morning. Won’t you do the same? Tomorrow morning, take your bible to the coffee shop or out to the front porch. Take a portion of your lunch to search God’s word for the encouragement you need or the answers you’ve been seeking. No matter how or when you do it, give God access to the “loading dock of your lives” my friends. Ask Him to help you clear out the junk and trust Him to provide all your needs in the New Year.