So a few of our times together at IYC gave me some things to think about. One right out of the gate was our evening session from Monday night, with Miles McPherson. I hadn't really heard of Mr.McPherson before that night, so if you love him...bear with me. I'm new here.
He began by telling how he used to be a professional sports player of some kind, and now has grown a church from nothing to being an incredibly blessed congregation of 12,000 people. As an example of their greatness, he dropped the fact that they donated 600 community service hours as a church last year. I stink at math, but that comes out to less than 3 minutes per person a year. It's sad to think that might actually be a high number.
He talked about authentic worship briefly, and boldly declared that the only way to truly worship freely was to stand with both arms raised high in the air. Waist level wasn't cuttin' it. He even had all the teens stand and perform the action (without even saying "Simon Says"), to prove his point. It was hard to hear much after this, but thankfully I continued to listen.
Because he brought out some good points from Daniel 3, and the story of the guys with 3 funny names, who ended up in the fiery furnace. If you haven't read it...go read it now. But you probably have, and even seen the chocolate bunny version on Veggie Tales. The main point of his message here was to not worry about the consequences of following Jesus. He pointed out that not even the SMELL of fire was on them, which is quite a feat. Beyond how we worship, because that's pretty trivial in the scheme of things....how often to we live toward others out of Love, Forgiveness, Grace, Mercy, Truth, Holiness, Life, Redemption, etc..without concern for how the world may respond?
Another thing he mentioned, simply in the peripheral of his talk, was our prayers. He said "God is bored with our prayers." After being a bit offended, in the way my daughters might be if you told her I was bored with her attempts at talking with me....I connected with what he was saying.
What are most of the prayers we offer? "God, bless this food..." But is there anything wrong with the food? Does it require a movement of God upon our food to do something supernatural? How about "God, keep me safe while I sleep tonight, etc." Granted, sometimes we face things in the late hours, and it's a good habit. Along with praying for Grandma, who's feeling a bit under the weather. These are not bad prayers. But for them to be the only, or even majority of the prayers we breathe on a daily basis?
These 3 men were about to be cast into a furnace so hot it killed the guards who opened it. They were trusting in God to provide for them. Imagine God's excitement, compared to "God bless this pizza I'm about to eat...."
May we live in such a way, that requires us to pray for things that get God excited...
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