Friday, January 15, 2010

Sincere Vulnerability

It’s amazing to me what a spiritual atmosphere can do for you. I just got back from my Student Week of Prayer Retreat out at Camp Mivoden. It was amazing. I didn’t realize the spiritual high I’d had and still have until I got back. The moment I stepped out of the car my sermon began. As I walked into the dorm I felt a huge wave of negativity rush at me. I was back to curing everyone else’s problems. Listening to friends rather than to God. It felt so weird to be back considering I’d only listened to God for the past few days. Even the words I shared with the other spiritual leaders while on our trip were focused on God and filled with the Holy Spirit. There’s nothing better than this type of atmosphere.
Even though all 12 of us speakers hadn’t really hung out before this trip, and we didn’t really know each other that well, it felt… safe. It was inviting. God’s presence could be felt everywhere. I learned so much. I learned that ultimately life is all about relationships. And when you’re real with each other, you automatically connect, without having to try so hard. Each one of us told our story. I opened up more than I ever have in my whole life. I told things to the group that I’d told no one before. For the first time in my life, I was completely vulnerable. I uncovered the cuts, scars and bruises. I was real. I was brave. It hurt, but I believe God used me. There’s nothing better than an environment that provides this much love, acceptance and security.
I learned to hear. There’s a difference between listening and hearing. I’ve listened for God’s voice before, but it’s so different from actually hearing God’s voice. I’m slowly recognizing his still small voice. Whole-heartedly giving Him my focus has benefited my relationship and growth in Him.
Everyone’s focus was on God. All day, for 3 days. No one talked about anything besides God and it felt so natural. Coming back to the dorm that’s all I wanted to talk about, but everyone else seemed to find it strange. But that’s what I’d gotten use to. Isn’t it sad that we get looked down on when constantly sharing the goodness of God? But I don’t want it to stop, no matter the consequences. My heart is swelling with God’s love. It’s overflowing with joy. I just pray it never stops.
I believe with all my heart that God specifically choose each person there. I could see spiritual growth in everyone by the end of the weekend. God has worked wonders, and I’m so glad I could be a witness to His greatness.
Thinking about this three day adventure has got me thinking. It can’t be much different from heaven. There will be no held back tears, no pain, no complaints, no negativity. We will feel loved, we will be accepted, God will be our only focus. We will feel safe in our vulnerability.

--Written 01/10/10

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