Oportunities Arise

Posted: July 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

     Image       The weather was perfect this Sunday at Eisenhower Park–clear blue sky, slight cool breeze, and chirping birds in tall elm trees. About halfway through the message, I noticed a young man ride up on a bicycle. He had all the official cycling gear and took a spot to rest under a nearby tree. He seemed to be listening to the message. You never know who is going to show up at an outdoor church! I was sharing about the “Expectation Gap”. How there is a gap between what we expect of God and what actually happens in real life. For many people the Expectation Gap increases as bad things happen. As I reached this point in the message, I noticed the cyclist seemed to be paying more attention.  I mentioned how many people find it difficult to live in the Expectation Gap of life. That what we dreamed or expected life would be like and what it actually is can be twp points that are very far apart. The gap can be the place where discouragement and depression bloom.  We start to doubt God because our circumstances drive our faith. Instead of grabbing firmly to the eternity of the resurrection, we are blown away by the wind of our own immediate feelings. The one point I tried to make was that the gap in our life as Christians can be closed by grabbing on to this one truth: our expectations should be founded on something that happened once and for all and not just our current situation.  This once and for all event is what has changed millions of lives over the centuries. Here is the Bible passage that I used:

Hebrews 4:14  NIV

     Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.

     This once for all time game changer, the resurrection and ascension of Jesus, is what we can hold on to as our permanent source of strength. Our expectation gap will close as we set our minds on the permanent rather than the temporary.
     After the message and closing song I was able to spend some time with our visitor. He shared that he had “smoked a lot of weed” that morning. I asked him if he knew Jesus as savior and he replied that he did. It was an interesting conversation which jumped from diverse topics like brain mapping and the universal logos to how to get food as a homeless person. I will keep praying for him get closer to God and that his expectation gap would close. At this point another member of the Gathering continued to share with our visiting cyclist as my attention was drawn away by two more visitors who saw our signs on the street and came needing help. This couple was stranded in Denver as their bus tickets back to Houston were stolen along with the wife’s purse. At first this sounded like an old “con” game to me, but after listening for a while and praying, I felt they were legit. They shared that they needed a ride to East Colfax. They had  called the bus lines and someone had found the purse. The tickets were at Auto Zone. They had been in Seattle for a funeral and were heading back to Houston when the purse was stolen. They had visited several churches and received no assistance. The couple had seen our signs on the corner of Colorado Blvd. and Dartmouth. Joseph and I drove them to Auto Zone to get the purse and bus tickets, and we got to share Jesus with them.
     It was an amazing day at The Gathering yesterday! I want to invite you to the Gathering this Sunday in Eisenhower Park. The topic of discussion will be angels. Come expecting God to do wonderful things!


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