“people don’t know what’s wrong with their souls..”

“….& what’s wrong with their souls is that their souls have shrunk to the level of their concerns. Their not concerned about the Nations. We were made to get our arms around the Nations with God. When you pray ‘Hallowed by Thy Name, Thy kingdom come’ that’s meant to take your heart & make it as big as history & as large as the globe.”

That’s a healthy heart, it’s a strong, large, healthy heart…..we’re made for this.”

Maybe a 22 pound heart Mr.Piper?

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Something broke open today. It happened this afternoon, after the madness of registration for the Worship and Prayer academy I made my way to FSM. Walking towards the meal tent the usual sound of hundreds of teenagers was somewhat overpowered….. by music.

Fifty some the campers had guitars out, all across the lawn and under the tent, sprawled in different positions over chairs, on top of tables or on the ground, playing and singing with a crowd around them. At least that many were beating the nearest random object with drumsticks. It sounds chaotic when I try to describe but it was beautiful to walk thru, almost surreal, and my heart burst open.

Craziness continued, counselors with changes, campers losing their things, communicating schedule differences, fielding situations, running to cvs for MORE Dayquill for ANOTHER sick teen. Buzzing in and out of the service I tried to tune in for glimpses of worship and was provoked as every teen gathered as one at the front of the auditorium.

Landing in a seat I closed my eyes and determined not to move until I caught Him, until my eyes could settle on the unwavering gaze of my Lord. The two singers on stage were prophesying the heart of the Father and as my own heart burst open I was a little shocked at what brought tears rolling down my cheeks.

Sitting in the back, jaw clenched, eyes squeezed shut, hands wide open the thought that rolled through my mind and forced open the barricade inside was this “No matter what I find my hands doing for the rest of my life I will be happy if I can sing.”

I was made to praise Him. A lover can never cease to proclaim the goodness of their hearts desire in whatever means they can make their thoughts known.

Service ended and still I sat under the gentle weight of the presence of my Father. A hand touched my shoulder and electricity shot through my frame as my ears heard the voice of one of our counselors who hardly knows me. For ten + minutes he laughed over me, encouraging my soul with the word of the Lord, reminding my heart of things that only God knows with incredible detail as I sobbed till I couldn’t open my eyes.

Tonight I picked up my guitar and with the first strum I was right back in that heavy cloud of the presence of the Lord. It’s breathtaking, when that first ‘down up’ forces you through to the place that you never want to leave. In those moments the music of my soul overpowers the pain of the day, the words I’ve felt a loss for flood faster than I can write. These are the moments I ache to be able to record. Sometimes it feels like we wait for weeks. Tonight it was the first ‘C’.

I have a feeling about this camp. The last one convinced me of 2 things; 1) The Lord will use me in my weakness 2)There is a generation who will see the face of God. Day one of this camp and I am stirring up my soul to believe another: America will see her Prophets, apostles, priests, nazarites and revolutionaries.

There is a generation of young people who will be known as friends of Jesus. And we will see Revival.

Revival in America Again

Yup, I’m hearing Carmen in my head right now. And it’s glorious. When I was little my mom would often play Carmen on a little cassette player right next to my bed to send me off to sleep. I loved him and I would tell her that someday when I was old enough I was going to play Carmen REAL LOUD while driving around in my El Camino…

But I digress. Yesterday was my first Revival History class. My notes said the class was called “Introduction to Revival”. “Why we need Revival” would have been more accurate and the class was pretty heavy. I found myself purposefully holding back on the intensity that I felt inside so that I wouldn’t overwhelm my students, all 6 of whom are shy introverts.

Tonight I had another reminder of why we need Revival in America. I’m exhausted and so hungry, but I came into a sleeping house to find that my mother had brought me Ramen. Comfort food, Holy Spirit who is my Comforter and Kelanie Gloeckler serenating me and I’m sure to sleep tonight.

I’ll wait up for You Jesus. Dance with me while I’m dreaming.

The Next Great Awakening

Ever embarking on an adventure tonight I am writing notes for the first of a 7-session class on Revival History that I will be teaching for our Student Ministries 3.12 school. My thoughts on this class follow:

  1. I have never taught a class before (ie. setting curriculum, writing notes, making assignments).
  2. Truth be told I’m a Storyteller, and there’s almost no topic more on my mind these days so I’m not very worried about teaching.
  3. Preparing has given me reason to read and think about the moves of God throughout history like CRAZY these last few weeks and my soul feels nourished from the books I’m inhaling.
  4. Alyssa is going to lead worship for my class, and that’s going to be REAL good.

Tonight I am staying home from the Awakening to write and ensure that everything is done by tomorrow mid-morning with plenty of time to print. Now that I say that I remember that only 5 kids are signed up for my class. No matter, those five are worth it. I pray that a hunger for Jesus is sparked in their hearts that will never be put out.

The soundtrack to my study tonight is Jake Hamilton’s cd. Jake and his wife are apart of Refuge Prayer House in Rancho Cucamonga CA. His team led many of the prayer meetings during the 40 Days preparing for TheCall CAin 2008 and I love them. Why this music of choice for an evening of work? Check out the lyrics to his The Next Great Awakening.

I see you in the valley, Transferring death for life
I see an army coming, They all bear your light

I am not bound to reason, I live in violent love
This world can not define me, My hearts set above

For me to live it Christ, For me to die is gain
I am not shrinking back, I’ll never be the same

Four walls can not contain me, I know I’ve been possessed
I know that God is love, And there’s no failing love
So I am fearless

Come, love is overtaking me now.

This is the sound of a revolution.
This is the sound of a prophet’s cry.
This is the sound of a reformation.
This is the sound of a warrior bride.
This is the sound of a giants falling.
This is the sound that you can’t ignore.
This is the sound of a red moon rising.
This is the sound of an open door.

God, release the sound, Release the movement
I’m laying down everything

God, you promised nations, I want the nations
I’m not gonna settle, now
I, I hear the cry, I hear the longing
This is the sound of freedom

I stand in the gap, I stand here praying
For the next, Great Awakening

Revival’s not a method or a mission
Revival’s not program or a play
Revival is not a slogan
Revival is a man
His name is Jesus

“When peace like a river attendeth my way”

11.49pm and my alarm goes off at 5am tomorrow.

This morning I awoke with a weepy heart, whispering on the inside ” Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” This morning I wished for coffee with Jeremy to help me untangle my thoughts and emotions. This morning I cringed at the list of things needing my attention this week; emails, meetings, planning, research, note making, preparing for class, books to be read in class preparation, phone calls, and on and on. This morning I wondered again why the Lord did not have me go to DC in January. This morning I did not want to be a leader, and this morning I did NOT want to go to youth church.

But I got out of bed, grabbed coffee with my best friend, and went to service anyway. Walking down the hallway I hoped for a room full of the teenagers whose faces I have come to love, thinking that the sight would lift my spirits. What I saw was the sound guy, the worship team practicing and only five kids in the room, 3 of whom I had never seen before.

But I sat in the front so that I could think about Jesus and not the empty room. And more kids came despite the snow, the faithful teens who are the reason I show up for 6 hours worth of planning meetings every week. And I watched Zac, our anointed 16yr old worship leader break down crying while singing about the soon return of Jesus and in that moment it was worth it. Getting out of bed today was worth seeing the longing for Jesus coming out of that young man’s heart.

This morning peace came to me with tears as the small group of 30 worshiped the Lord in that little room. This morning I called my soul to remember my hope, He is coming. We’re not always going to live like this, at a distance from the One who we love. Hear me, the Lord IS pouring out His Spirit in a fresh and powerful way and that is real. But….

But one day we will see Him face to face. And He comes back to the song of His bride longing for Him to return. Today I saw longing in the face of our students, and all of my changed plans and the accompanying pain and questions were worth it. Tomorrow I may need another reminder, but today it was worth it.

Today the healthcare bill passed by a narrow, narrow vote. And tomorrow I submit myself again to the “weakness” of prayer, asking with the same fervor of today, not discouraged or dismayed. Today I still believe for the mercy of God. And tomorrow I still stand in faith for the salvation of the unborn.

And this is what I live for, a generation to be friends of Jesus. This is what I wake for, this is what I pray for. Revival for breakfast, revival for lunch, revival for dinner (Thanks Alyssa).

Thy kingdom come Lord, thy will be done on earth, even as it is in heaven.

Armed with tears

Tonight I went to a fundraiser for a campaign that Youth With A Mission is doing in Grandview MO this upcoming fall. Mark Anderson is one of my hero’s in the missions movement and I was so excited to hear him speak.  Also I was excited for the desserts. Just being honest.

I was expecting a night of vision casting, lots of details, ramped up emotions and to leave full of sugar and excitement for this plan to take off! I was not expecting a swarm of conviction. A card sitting in front of me on the table, accusing me with it’s gentle color’s and bold font “What is it worth to you?” . Hearing the plan for my city and finding in my heart there was little to no excitement, and instead a significant amount of reluctance, knowing just how much would be required of me. And not sure I wanted to give it.

You see I feel, a whole lot, about the youth of the “Nations”.  I have a significant amount of emotion related to the “youth of THIS Nation”. But when Mark Anderson himself talks about the first season of his marriage including lots of young adults living in his apartment because they’d gotten saved and kicked out of their homes….. I suddenly don’t like it. I like the idea of kids living in my home …. when it’s an apartment somewhere in another country  and not my actual little living room. I’m in near daily struggles with my housemates over my desire for our shared living spaces to be kept cleaned and uncluttered. Add 4 young adults to the mix, all of us sharing one bathroom, and I don’t like it. Not when it’s this house. Not when it’s this bathroom. Not when it’s in America and not my dream world as a real missionary in some other country.

This talk about preparing my home to be a disciplining center by the fall? I didn’t really like the sound of that either. Add into that my need to be evangelizing my neighbors, yeah, that struck a nerve too. Trust me I noticed my growing dread and was concerned. Right about the time when I was wondering if I am saved Mark made a statement about “the Church that doesn’t share the gospel” and their need to actually get saved. That struck a different nerve.

Then he told a story about Brazil and a tour that he didn’t want to do there. Long story short he finds himself convinced by the Lord and one passionate  23 yr. old intern, in the city to meet with the Pastor asking for World Impact to come. All of the plans had fallen through; the money, church backing, and venue. The pastor was discouraged and Mark couldn’t understand WHAT he was doing there and what God wanted to do, until that night. He & the intern were pacing their hotel room praying and as the sun set he stopped at the window of their 12th floor room to look down on the city.

On the sidewalk below he noticed many children (typical for latin america) but quickly saw that something was different. Instead of boisterous laughter and the scampering play that he should have seen in a group of children still outside at sunset, they were all standing, with a few feet between them on the sidewalk. Little boys and little girls. Cars began to pull up and one by one take them away. Some of the cars just stayed there. Little boys and little girls in open forced prostitution. “My heart broke and suddenly I knew why God wanted us there, it was about them. It was about the youth.”

I cried for a minute right there over my hard heart, and for that minute I could hear nothing but Mark’s voice saying that, “it was about them”. Card on the table staring me in the face “What’s it worth to you?”. One of the other youth leaders and I spent a moment praying together and discussed it on the way home. She empathized with my emotions and we talked a little of the conviction we felt and our renewed commitment to the youth of this city.

Less than ten minutes after walking through the front door my phone rang. Both of my parents were on the phone and my father was quick to assure me that they were ok. But my mentors were not. A couple who I consider spiritual parents back home live in a very bad part of town. This afternoon around 3pm Mike got home, walked into the kitchen and noticed someone in his driveway waving for him to come outside and calling for a cell phone. Seeing someone on the ground he thought they’d fallen in the ice and quickly ran outside to find a 14 year old boy, shot in the head and stomach, lying in his driveway. Mike put his hand on the boy’s chest, and right there he died.

Mike and Lucy have three children, 16, 14 & 12. I’m so thankful that Lucy and the kids weren’t home this afternoon, but at 10pm Mike still had not been able to leave the house and his responses to my messages were full of pain. They are intercessor’s, saints, friends of God and full of compassion. I hate the thought of how he will not sleep tonight, and the fear that Lucy is going to fight for their children.

I tell you, sometimes the only weapons we have to fight with are tears. And they wage a strong kind of warfare! It is time to stop longing for the nations and ignoring my neighbors. That You would have a bride out of every tribe and tongue, even my own Lord. Watching one of the WIT video’s tonight I heard a latino woman say “I can not thank you for what you have done, what you have brought to my people.” My people, I thought, Lord I hardly have a thought for my people. Father make Americans my people. More than Latino’s, more than Romanian’s, make American’s my people.

Tonight I made a cake. While praying for my friends and crying for that 14 year old boy who is now before the Judgement seat I whipped up some cream cheese frosting. Before going to bed I covered it in red sprinkles, because sprinkles are just a little bit more happy than plain icing, and tomorrow morning I’m going to need something happy. Yup, I’ll probably eat that cake for breakfast on a fasting day.

Tonight I am not armed with eloquent intercession. Tonight I come before the throne of Grace with only gentle tears to offer. Come and move on behalf of my people Lord, send Revival to America, send Revival to Omaha, send Revival to Glenwood, send Revival to California, and send revival to South Kansas City. And send Revival to my own heart.

Smith Wigglesowrth prophecied of the youth movement

When Lester Sumrall was forced to leave Europe at the beginning of the second world war, he went to his spiritual father Smith Wigglesworth to say goodbye. Smith Wigglesworth was an older man, and Sumrall said that he never met a single other person in his home, there were no lines waiting to get the faith of Smith Wigglesworth. There had been lines to receive healing, but there were no lines to get his faith.

During their tearful goodbye he sad that Wigglesworth’s eyes began to burn, like Elijah when he saw the chariots coming from heaven, and he said,

I want to tell you somehing. Oh I see it! I see revival coming to planet earth, maybe as never before. It will be untold numbers and untold, uncounted multitudes that will be saved. No man will say ‘so many so many’ because nobody will be able to count those that will come to Jesus. The dead will be raised, the arthritic will be healed, cancer will be healed. No disease would be able to stand before God’s people, it will be all over the world. Ot would be a worldwide situation, a worldwide thrust of God’s power. I will not see it. But you shall see it.

There was another young man who testified of Wigglesworth prophesying that a time was coming when there would be great signs and wonders as a revival. And there would be a time of great teaching of the Word. There would come a great revival at the end of times when signs and wonders and teachings would be combined together.

Sound familiar friends? Let’s get serious, and let’s get excited.