The past couple of weeks have been busy but incredible to see God move. I am not a huge fan of preaching that makes you feel bad, plays on your emotions to fill the altars. I dont want to see teens kneel because they are scared of hell but kneel because they long for an incredible love relationship with God. Yet the last two weeks at The Gathering I have preached with more intensity over this idea of Pure Salvation and Pure Sanctification. As I look at the lives of teenagers in my ministry and that I come in contact with I see this desire to get out of Hell but not to be changed by God in a very radical way. So I presented this series called Pure and really pushed my kids to experience REAL purity in their lives.
In the last couple of weeks we have had two teens accept Christ for the first time. Two teens who were lost and are now found. I have seen several other teens see the need for something more than just existing in their walk with God and it excites me! Then last night I played hide and seek with my daughter for the first time. Either my wife and daughter would hide together and I would try and find them. Or my daughter and I would hide and Amy would come look for us. Ally was so excited about hiding but there was this incredible desire to be found! She would see one of us get close and take off the blanket, or peek out from her very obvious hiding spot if we didnt look at her soon enough. It was almost as if she saw this person seeking for her so intently that she wanted to be found.
As I have been thinking and praying for my youth ministry, I realized that the teens that I am ministering to are wanting the same thing. They are lost or hiding, whether it be in sin or in complacency in their walks but they are waiting to be found. There is this expectancy to be found and when they see someone looking intently they cant help but peek out from their hiding place and hope that they will be seen. They are longing to be found so that they can get out of where they are into something new but they need to know they matter enough to be found.
As I was thinking last night and this morning about hide and seek, I wondered how often do we go "seeking" teens and we get close to where they are and they see us so they peek out, and we dont "find" them. How often do we miss them because we think they are somewhere else or we think that they will want found enough that they will come find us? I want to keep looking, not get caught up in this event or that search that I miss seeing where they are hiding.
I am Outie 5000,