I am coming off of an exciting weekend. I had the opportunity to preach while the Pastor was away and we had our first Journeys Youth Rally Sunday evening. The folks at our church really pitched in and made it a great weekend for the youth. I could not be any more proud of our youth for their effort too.. It is the start of an exciting Journey for these young people. Our theme was "choices" and the focus verse was Joshua 24:15. "Choose you this day whom you will serve...as for me and my friends (house) we will serve the Lord." We talked about 5 big truths about choices and then presented a challenge for them to make a commitment, along with their friends, to "choose" a life path of serving God. We had a Journeys Canvas for each, willing to make that commitment, to sign. If they were making that as a commitment together as friends, they were to sign their names close together. It was amazing to watch them file forward, hit their knees and sign the Canvas as friends committed to God and to each other.
What a great opportunity for God to show a group of young people just how much He loves them. He showed up, spoke to their hearts and accepted their worship and their commitments. What an awesome God. To be able to say to a group of young people, "God loves you, wants to be involved in your life and wants to use you!", with the real belief He will do just that, speaks volumes to how much He loves us.
I think some of the young people caught a glimpse of how God can use their "choices" to, not only change their own future, but to impact others. We make the choices, then God adds influence to those choices. That is why it is so important to make good choices! It gives God something to work with. Our gifts, talents, efforts, choices are of very little value if we are not in partnership with God to use them. It is not our idea. It has been His plan from the beginning. He designs us uniquely, with everything we would ever need to do anything He would ever call us to do, but not alone. He orchestrates the connections, the relationships, the encounters, the timing. Does that not just blow your mind! An infinite God, who has a burning desire to redeem a whole world to himself, also makes a "choice". He chooses to use you and me, as broken as we are, to accomplish His burning passion.
Wow, He really does love us. To say to you and I, "I choose you as my partner!" He doesn't choose you second or last, but right out of the chute, He chooses you. (I have to take a break for a second, my brain is smoking again) That is just to much for this weak mind to comprehend: An infinite, all knowing God says I am an important part of His strategy. (Brain on fire!) If that doesn't say to you and I that He loves us and believes in us, then He may never be able to convince us of His love. Awesome, you and I have a "huge" part in His big dream. WE ARE HIS STRATEGY!. NO FREAKING WAY! YES WAY!!! I am excited and invite you to JOIN THE JOURNEY!