My Best Day of 2008
“Bitterness is the greatest cancer of the soul.” – Hagazi Kebede
Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. (Ephesians 4:31)
What are you thankful for this week?
Tuesday November 18 was my best day of 2008 thus far. Why? UNITY! CLARITY! PASSION! God was all over the day – good news at every turn. God rekindled my fire for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes after reminding me of the extremely positive impact that organization had on me, my family, and the Culpeper community.
I woke up at 4 am instead of my usual 5 am and read the book of Jonah and the first 5 chapters of Isaiah. America today reminds me a lot of Nineveh of old in the days of Jonah. When I wrote my devotional around 7 am and did a Google search looking for my link of the day, the first link I came across, I chose to use and wouldn’t you know, the key verse for that blog post was the verse from Isaiah that had jumped out at me earlier.
At the monthly Culpeper Ministerial Association meeting, 29 people came, although three had to leave early because of an unplanned urgent meeting. That’s more than I’ve ever seen before. But what’s really neat is the fire, passion, and unity I see among our spiritual leaders. I am so thankful to Jesus for what He’s doing.
Hagazi Kebede led the devotional. He is my dear friend from Ethiopia who works for the Persecution Project Foundation. Hagazi has been a faithful participant in Pray Culpeper [http://prayculpeper.org]. After sharing his story of being the victim of racial discrimination and hatred in the late 1980’s, he shared how God miraculously healed him from the root of bitterness that had taken hold through the power of a vivid dream. Hagazi then shared that his favorite book of the Bible is Jonah, which I had read earlier that morning.
Mark Jenkins, pastor of Mountain View Community Church and the one currently leading the Experiencing God series in our community, said he is encouraging everyone at his congregation to bring wheel barrows of canned food to the community Thanksgiving service on Tuesday evening Nov 25. He said he expects it to be standing room only at Culpeper Baptist Church, which has a roughly 900 seat capacity. That’s never happened before for this spiritual community event.
Randy Orndorff, pastor of the Culpeper United Methodist Church, shared great news about how many businesses and organization are marketing the Chris Sligh concert in memory of Kelsey Orndorff at the Culpeper High School on Saturday Nov 22. They expect that to be sold out with an overflow. That auditorium seats 1,200.
There was active discussion and interest in starting a quarterly community worship and prayer gathering. Pastor Chad Whaley came and discussed the need for pastors and churches to adopt a simple solution to address the needs of the homeless in our community. Pastors jumped all over that. Thank You Jesus!
In the evening, Julia and I drove to Fredericksburg for the annual FCA banquet. I hadn’t been involved with the FCA or attended one of its banquets for 4 years. It was weird how we ended up going. My wife started actively using Facebook after participating in the webinar I hosted with Mari Smith, the pied piper of Facebook.
Then Kerry O’Niell, the Director of the Fredericksburg area FCA, began reaching out to bless Julia with little “touches” through Facebook. About a week ago, my wife tells me out-of-the-blue that she wants to go to the FCA banquet. What an incredible blessing. I’ll share more about that tomorrow.
Jack Serra, one of the regional VP’s for Harvest Evangelism, says “The businessman’s ministry in the marketplace will only advance to the extent his marriage permits.” He teaches that a wife’s primary role to her husband is helpmate and that husbands need to listen to their wives. Well, for months my wife has been telling me I need to get out more to be with people and groups. Of course, she’s right.
Heavenly Father, we have so much to be thankful for in Culpeper and Virginia. Thank You for turning up the spiritual temperature in our communities. Thank You unity, clarity, and passion among our spiritual leaders. Thank You for rekindling my fire to bless teens through the FCA. Ignite a bond fire of praise, worship, and prayer in our state that rapidly spreads across our nation. Thank You Jesus. Amen and hallelujah!
Link of the Day
Blessings to end 2008 on a bang, overflowing with thanksgiving!
What a blessing to read about your day. Makes me want to start a whole new blog of daily blessings.