Ever feel like God calls you to an impossible task? I laugh imagining every parent reading this nodding their head and thinking, “Yeah! It’s called staying patient with your kids on day four of Polar Vortex 2019!”
This month has been a busy one for us as we trek forward through this transition period. Justin is still at his current job for some weeks yet. However, it’s also necessary that we push hard to get everything ready for the day we launch into working full-time on Chosen Gen this spring. As we press on, it’s way too easy to get bogged down by the list of to-dos and feel overwhelmed as we see the towering challenge set before the Church: winning back the next generation from the darkness that is stealing them away from their Savior. It’s a seemingly impossible task.
As I think of the account of Joshua and the nation of Israel as they headed into the Promised Land, it takes on a whole new meaning for me right now. After Moses died, God tells Joshua in no uncertain terms to be “strong and very courageous” and go in and take the Promised Land. So, they set off and God parts the Jordan River and the Israelites cross over on dry ground. Then God tells Joshua it’s time to start the military campaign with the city of Jericho, which is walled, secured, and on lockdown because of the Israelite army.
And God’s battle plan? Ridiculous. March around the city for seven days in silence. Talk about standing out and looking silly. Who does that?
God does. He needed the Israelites and everyone else watching to know that He was the one fighting for them. It was His battle. His plan. His power. His victory.
Unless the Lord builds the house,
the builders labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
the guards stand watch in vain. - Psalm 127:1
No training regimen, strategizing or intricate battle plan could have accomplished what God did on the plains of Jericho. Only God makes entire strongholds collapse.
So, here we stand with towering walls glaring at us as we consider the impossible task of winning the next generation for the Kingdom of God. While we could easily get lost spending months creating our battle plans, we don’t want the kind of victories we can win in our own strength. We want to see God move and do more than we could ever ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20-21). We don’t want to see a small shift in the next generation. We want to see the next generation of Jesus followers rise up in the strength of the Holy Spirit with a boldness that has never been seen before. We want to see a new army of young men and women equipped with the sword of the Spirit (God’s Word) charging into the darkness of this world, carrying the the banner of Jesus, and bringing his life-changing hope, love and freedom to the countless desperate for it.
So, we’ve made a commitment that Chosen Gen will be a ministry that relies on God for everything. This means lots and lots of prayer. We keep a prayer journal and find ourselves in daily prayer over the direction and plans of this ministry. It also means time diving into the Bible. We are two sinful humans like everyone else, and if we aren’t saturated in God’s truths, then other voices can start to lead and direct our decisions. We are also committed to following God’s leading no matter how ridiculous the plan may seem. I’m sure it was a bit awkward to walk around a city in silence… until day seven! We are happy to do it if it means God gets the glory and the battle is won.
So, our question is: will you join us? There is no more important thing to fight for than the souls of your children.
Lord, open up the eyes of parents to see how we’ve all missed it, to see how much we’ve chased after the world, and to see the terrible cost it has had on the next generation. Help us to trust that it is never too late with you. Help us to see that lasting joy and hope are found in you. Help us to stand up and follow you wherever you lead us. Use our simple lives to bring light to the darkness and hope to the hopeless. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. - Ephesians 3:20-21