I went to church today. I go pretty much every week, and it has become part of my rat-race -- the ones that the rats are winning at the moment. When I got there, I dropped the kids in Kid's Church, and headed into the sanctuary. Instead of sitting down I decided to just stand in the back. Sometimes you need to break up the monotony (can you believe it) and do something different in church. So, I paced the back wall just praying as my spirit seemed to see fit. I enjoyed that along with the worship which doesn't really do anything for me most of the time. Well, I mean I don't really engage with it most of the time.
After the worship, and my prayer time ended, the pastor, who had just returned from Spain with a mission trip that included the youth group, got up to the platform. He began to speak about doubt; his doubts regarding the trip. Basically, everything they had planned, fell through. From interpreters to youth participation, nothing seemed to work out. They couldn't get permits to work the park or the local outdoor market. So, they went with what they had, bottled water with tags from the local congregation, and 20 kids. They started making balloon animals and painting faces, worshiping publicly, and praying. The kids came and brought their parents. This went on for days. They had so much success in the park, they actually went to the outdoor market without a permit. They gave out water, and did what they could to speak with people. The police even assisted them! One cop was heard to say, "I don't see anyone giving out water!"
My favorite story was of a boy and his mother. The little boy came every day to get his face painted with Spider Man. I guess he was a little bit annoying, and put some of the staff off. But on Sunday, out of 4,000 printed invitations to church, they were only ones that came.
I think that is it wonderful that our team spent $40K to bring two people to the local church. Some would say that is crazy, but I see it as great thing for my American church. Their sacrifice was to Jesus, and not based on numbers. And, if it gets them to do something more here at home, awesome!
I love testimonies. I have written about them many times in this bog. Try searching for Brazil, or Norway. In the end, all we have is our testimony and the blood of Jesus.
Revelation 12:11 "And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death." NAS
I was speaking with an acquaintance after the service, and said, "I don't know what the hell I would want to go to work for, when I could be doing that [missions]!"