I had an amazing experience this morning. It was early morning and I opened up my Bible to Hebrews chapter 12 because tomorrow night I will speak on that passage at the youth group. Honestly, I was a little groggy and not super motivated. Then it happened. As I read, God started downloading a new message to me. The funny thing is that it was not for the youth group. It was for the men’s retreat.
I need to back up and give context. Several months ago I was asked to speak at the Men’s Retreat for Meadow Creek. When the ask came I was quite shocked. This was long before I had even opened my mind to the idea of taking the position at Grace. I was still fairly closed to the idea of vocational ministry. The man who asked me is a friend, and I accepted because he asked. In the back of my mind a little voice was shouting “NO! RUN AWAY!” but another voice–a quieter, stronger one–said “yes.”
At the time I was putting together The Overflow Principle, so I thought this might be a good chance to present that material–you know, kill two birds with one stone. I told Meadow Creek that we would do the Overflow, but it has never felt right. Overflow is such a large concept, I didn’t know how I would cram it into a weekend and have it be meaningful. For months it has been eating away at the back of my mind. It has felt like I’m trying to cram a square peg into a round hole. The day is approaching and the underlying discomfort has been bubbling to the surface. What should I do?
Then this morning happened. In an incredible act of grace, God downloaded the entire weekend to me. Hebrews chapter 12. I love this chapter. It has a special place in my heart because the first three verses were the key vereses for the very first ministry I ever officially led as a pastor. Guess which ministry it was–that’s right–Men’s Ministry at Central Christian Church in Vegas.
In just a few moments during the quiet of the morning I had a 180 degree paradigm shift. I went from apprehension to exhilaration. Now I am totally pumped for speaking at the conference. The sessions make sense in my mind. The topics are pertinent to men’s issues, and the theme is masculine.
Thank you, God.
Here’s the outline:
Weekend Title: Running the Race — Hebrews 12
Friday Night: Fix Your Eyes on Jesus (vv. 1-3)
How do we abide in Christ. Look at John 15.
Saturday Morning: Scarred for Life (vv. 4-13)
How do we handle difficult life circumstances. Why do we suffer and how do we deal with it?
Saturday Night: Dealing with Distraction (vv. 14-17)
How do we overcome the three major killers of our faith and communities: bitterness, sexual immorality, and selfishness.
Sunday Morning: Catching Fire (vv. 18-29)
How to be ignited by the presence of God and be a passionate influence in your world.
If you are a man and would like to join us, the retreat is March 12-14, 2010 (next month) at Timber Bay. The cost is $100. for more info go to Meadow Creek’s site.