I am on my first Amtrak ride. And, am finding myself love-struck.
OK, so maybe love is too strong of a word. We Americans throw that word around too flippantly, or so I was told by my new friend Juliano who just arrived in New York from Venice last week.
Ah, I do love Italians. Love them. Yes, the word works this time.
The arm flailing, the passion for all things beautiful. The language. The music. The food.
Aaaah. I love New York.
Almost all things New York.
OK, scratch that...too much Babylon...but oh, the ministry opportunities! But oh...the people who are seeking to be loved unconditionally. The people who have not because they know not...
Who will tell them?
When you grab a cab, do you ever get outside of yourself enough to talk with the driver? Do you ask him (or her) where they're from? Do you allow that to be a jumping off point to ask about their understanding of who God is?
The harvest is ready...it's plentiful...it's ripe.
DO YOU GET THAT?! THE HARVEST IS RIPE!
Where are the harvesters?
Who is bringing in the sheaves?
Who is gleaning the leftovers in the fields?
WHAT ARE YOU DOING for Christ today?
I'm telling you...this trip has ignited my heart afresh!
Please Lord Jesus, PLEASE LORD JESUS...don't let me lull myself to sleep when I return home.
Send me to the lost. The pagans. The self-righteous. Those quibbling over denomination and translation.
Here I am LORD....send me. I've seen my sin. I've received my pardon of grace and mercy.
HERE I AM LORD...Your temple. The new House of the Lord. All I have is Yours. All I want is more and more and more and more of You...and not for me, LORD...but for them.
I know. I believe. I KNOW and trust that You will continue to mature me unto the day of redemption.
BUT LORD...what about THEM?!
They must hear Your Word. They must, as You tell us that faith comes by hearing...and hearing by the Word of God.
GOD, I beg of You...train me in this gift You've imparted to me. Grow me up in it. Make it so awesome, so rich, so clear LORD, that those who hear it and those who read the words that You give me, will bow awestruck, repentant, poured out and poor in spirit before Your Righteousness...
LORD, I pray that I will forever be humbled by the fact that you, the Almighty God, have chosen to use mere man for Your sovereign plan for the lost.
But I recognize in broken humility that You have.
So, I lay flattened before Your throne God, and I am declaring today that I will go. Wherever You send me...be it through the internet or to my neighbor's house....I will go and proclaim Your Goodness, Love, and your Mercy which comes before your judgment.
I recognize Lord, I know without question that persecution awaits me.
I pray LORD that you will make me brave. LORD, you know that yesterday as I stood praising you and looking at the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir members, the reality struck me that each one of them who truly belongs to you, will be persecuted.
God, there were a LOT of your saints standing in that choir awaiting persecution...what a visual that was for me LORD God, Lord Jesus!
Please, I beg of You...make me brave. Remind me that I truly can be strong and of good courage for the LORD my God will be with me.
Let me not fear man, for I know that as You use this blog to Your glory that man will hurl abusive words...man will persecute.
God, I need Your strength, and I need Your power.
I know by faith that I already have it through the indwelling of Your Spirit, but I also know that You give fresh fillings of Your Spirit...You give us an imperative to be filled...so Lord, please remind me of that truth when I forget it...that I will bow again and ask for that fresh filling of Your Spirit.
I love you so, LORD.
Be glorified here on this blog Father God. Be glorified my Lord Jesus.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight oh God...my Rock and my Redeemer.
Own my hands, my fingers, my keyboard, my thoughts....own them Lord, and use them to draw the lost, encourage the broken, and equip the saints to employ the gift(s) you have given to each one of them.
To You be the glory and the honor and the power both now and forever more!
God...I'm stepping up. I'm not going to walk in fear anymore. I'm not going to allow the comments of those still walking in sin to dictate what I will or will not say on this forum for Your glory.
This blog is Yours, LORD...You are my Master, I am your slave. I will take my orders only from You, my King.
Thank you for this trip of clarity God.
Thank you that you love me enough to want Your best written in me and poured out through me...I commit to you now that I will not settle for less than that which gives You all.
I bless You Lord. I bless You LORD. I bless Your Holy and precious Name!
Name above all names.
Lord of all.
It's snowing in upstate New York Lord.
Yet one more gift from the Father of lights...from whom all good and perfect gifts come.
First a train ride along the Hudson river, seeing all the beautiful colors of fall.
Now snow, and barren trees...ushering in winter.
Who knew, Lord?
Who knew all the joys You had awaiting us on this trip.
The trip to Bountiful, Lord.
You are so graciously bountiful.
Oh, how I could sing Your praises all day here...
May those who read this pick up the torch of praise and run with it throughout their homes, their churches, their towns today.
Albany is here...off to see our Dr. now.
I love You again Lord!
I love you too, reader...