For many months, now, Aleta & I have been watching little things here & there happen in the Phoenix area & have quietly wondered if the Lord might someday lead us back there. More recently we've been talking about how desperately we want to go where God is already moving ... to where He is beckoning, "Come to Me, here". That might sound a bit selfish, but it's just our honest desire after serving for so many years in contexts where it is hard to find real partners who know what the Life is really about.
Last night, Aleta & I spent some time in tears as we shared with each other & with our Father how alone we feel in the present season, & how this season has seemed to last for more than six years. Yes, God has done amazing things in us... transforming us in radical ways that are simply miraculous & to His glory... & we are very grateful. But we cannot deny that our longing for a team to serve with & a movement to participate in continues to grow in our hearts. Part of our prayer went something like this... "Father, we trust You ... but the future seems so unclear ... & it's hard to maintain hope sometimes .... please strengthen us ... show us where you want us to go ..."
Then, this morning, I cracked our latest issue of Relevant Magazine in an idle moment after I woke up (I don't ever do that in the morning). One of the first things I came across was this page...
The bold-print question captured me. "Yes!" I thought, "That's us!" I read the book description (bottom right), which explains the book content is "built on love: love of God, love of neighbor, love of self." Again... my heart lept. We've been discovering & preaching, in our little church here, this fundamental trinity of love, among which "love of self" seems frequently misunderstood & often overlooked. Then, the zinger... If you look closely, there is a small black box on the right side of the page in which James Forbes, endorsing the book, says, "You never know where the next Great Awakening is going to come from. Wherever it happens, I want to be present at the beginning, when the Spirit moves in wonderful ways. I see a spark of what very well may be the next Great Awakening here in Phoenix, Arizona." My jaw hit the floor. I woke Aleta up & showed her. Could this be an answer to our prayer that we tearfully offered only 8 hours earlier?