God’s Good Hard Work
Last week I urged you to join me in the hard work of prayer to ask God to do his work at the Men’s Retreat. Early this morning I was pondering what words I should use to tell you what happened, and in my Scripture reading for today God said to me, “Here, use these words.”
“Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live before him. Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.” Hosea 6:1-3
That is what happened in Trout Lake last weekend; a returning to the Lord. Sexual sin has torn many to pieces, both in the past and in the present, and right off the bat this grievous reality was dragged out into the light. Our speaker, Seth Milliner, set the direction by sharing his story and exhorting the men to come out of the darkness and embrace the healing of the Lord. It was overwhelmingly obvious that this call was answered in a powerful way.
Eighty men spent three days together eating great food, playing like big kids, singing loud praise to God, hearing excellent teaching, daring to be transparent, confessing sin and making concrete plans to live a life of redemption and integrity. It was hard work, but it was good work, because it was God’s work.
If I had any uncertainty whether God was really working, the final group session put it beyond all doubt. On the third day God raised us up! Men in a spectrum of situations spoke passionately of fresh understanding and strategic plans of action in response that could only be produced by the Spirit. What a holy moment that was.
Now we are all back home in our regular lives. Will this work of God really last? Time will tell, but we are working to see that it does with three specific initiatives.
- Men’s Conquer Groups: 5-week video series for overcoming sexual temptation. Saturday mornings at 8am beginning May 19. MEN: Please sign up here or let us know if you are interested.
- Women’s Counseling: Help is available for women struggling with sexual temptation or dealing with your husband’s battle with it. Contact Kathy Shenk (firstname.lastname@example.org) to find out about people and resources who can provide support.
- Life Group Revitalization: While there is a definite need for specialized groups and counseling, the need is equally great for our Life Groups to be effective in helping us follow Jesus in the face of real life problems, including sexual temptation. We will be training our Life Group leaders to this end in coming months.
Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord.