Spring in Redding, CA
It was so lovely having Anna here!
Anna and I on the same side of my FaceTime call with Mum and Dad! Good times!
In my last update Perpetual Motion I mentioned that I would go into more detail on what has been happening with me and what I have been learning this year. I will but first I have an exciting announcement.
Tomorrow I am leaving for North Africa! Through the generosity of many different individuals I have the chance to go to Northern Africa and show people God’s love I am so grateful that you would want to invest into my life and ministry and know that every cent is so appreciated. If you want to know more about what I’ll be doing and for a more detailed idea of what we’re doing over there please fill out the form on my blog page and you’ll be able to receive updates from me. After I come back I will let you all know how it went. I am in great anticipation for what God will do during this time.
I had the best couple of weeks at the end of February as my sister Anna came and visited me from Australia! It was such a wonderful time getting to hang out with her and introduce her to many of the people who have meant so much to me this year. We had many times where we would just talk for hours about all sorts of things and just in general had a great time together! With Anna in Redding and because I will be in Africa on my actual birthday Mum and Dad FaceTimed Anna and I. We had a mini birthday celebration for me which was just so wonderful! Anna even brought presents from Australia!
Back to school though, this year at BSSM has been completely transformational. As I touched on in my last update, there is a momentum that has been building in my life. I talked about how I had a very different picture of God than the one the Bible actually presents. My perspective of God has always been that He is up there in heaven just waiting for me to make a mistake so that He can punish me however the Bible actually presents us with an astonishing reality in Romans 8:15, where we see that God wants us to call him our Father, a startlingly different image from before. Jesus already took the punishment for my sins. That’s the kind of statement that you either believe or you don’t.
Another enormous lesson I’ve learned this year is about living my life not FOR the love of God but FROM it. If it was up to me to do good things in order for God to love me and bless me then it becomes a performance based religion in which God only loves me when I do good things. The truth however is different. I do not do good things for God’s love I do them because of His love. I don’t have to live my life for Him, I get to. Think about someone you love or have loved. You didn’t do special things for them because you had to you did them because you wanted to! It’s the same with God. Its not about doing things so he will love you its about relationship with Him. In Philippians 1:6 it says “He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus”. What I take away from this passage is that God is more invested in seeing me succeed than I am! Amazing! It seems like there isn’t a day at school where I don’t receive perception altering revelation on something!
I’d like to share with you a great way of visualising that God can and does always want to heal our minds and bodies. Are you going to change your theology just because of your experience or are you going to press in until your experience lines up with your theology? God does not change so the theology can not be the thing that changes, it must be us. Jesus is the perfect example and He lived 100% attuned to the Father. Jesus is also known for healing many many people. Hopefully this word picture will be as good for your understanding as it was for mine.
When there is no clouds its very easy to see a blue sky and the sun bearing down but when it is overcast it feels like the sun is completely gone and blue sky no longer exists. If you’ve ever flown anywhere you know that even though there is clouds there is always sun and blue sky on top of that. It is the same with healing. God always wants to heal so we need to praying knowing that “there is blue sky” ALL the time. The presence of clouds does not dictate whether or not the sun is there or not, its just all about our perspective.
Isaiah 53:5 says that Jesus paid for ALL our sicknesses. I was praying about this picture and God asked me “So you believe that I paid for your sins to be forgiven but my Word also says that I paid for your sickness. Why do you believe one but not the other?” I found myself in class going ‘well I either believe the Bible or I don’t’. So now when I pray for people I have an awareness that God is always able and willing to heal regardless of what the situation looks like. I’m certainly not the one that heals people, otherwise I’d have already been doing it! The only way you won’t see someone healed is if you stop praying for the sick. While I don’t see everyone I pray for healed I have seen enough that you could not convince me anymore that God doesn’t heal.
These few thoughts and countless more ‘aha’ moments have launched me on a journey of really seeking God on all of this and growing in my relationship with Him. I know that He is making me into a man who will have a huge impact on the world and I am learning to be content in the process of becoming that man. God isn’t going to love me any more in 10 years time when a lot of the things He’s teaching me now are a natural part of my life. He loves me now in the process and its a beautiful place of growing in relationship with Him.
PRAYER – for if you’re the praying type…
- For me to grow and see God work powerfully through me as I attend BSSM
- For finances for my upcoming trip to North Africa – THANK YOU!
- For me to continue to grow and see God work powerfully through me as I attend BSSM
- For my trip to Northern Africa that God would use me powerfully to bring His love to the people there.
For specifics on what to pray for for my trip to Africa send me an email using the form on my blog page.
God bless you!