Greater Things Are Yet to Come
The old saying "First come April showers than come May flowers", rings true in our hearts this month. God has been incredibly faithful in showering his love on us in many different ways! We believe we are entering into a season where the seeds that have been sown in the former years, are now beginning to bloom. At the beginning of the month two members of our leadership team followed Jesus to Los Angeles, California to attend Azusa Now. For those of you who have not heard about Azusa Now, it was a day long event on April 9th dedicated to fasting and prayer specifically for revival in America. We believe that God is calling us all to a place of repentance, turning our hearts to Him, and as we do that, we will see restoration in our nation. Our team was greatly moved by the heart of God for America and we are waiting in great expectation for God to release revival not only in our city of Abilene, TX, but in the United States of America.
The last statement of John the Baptist was "Prepare the way of the Lord" and "Behold the Lamb of God." It is our desire that we would behold Jesus in our lives. We have been convicted by the truth that you become what you behold, and we want to be the hands and feet of Jesus to those around us!
We have had a blast this month at the 9 Springs Garden at Harp Ranch with Keith and Elizabeth learning about sustainable gardening, and we are excited to see what God is going to do in the future as their garden is expanding quickly. God has been providing in ways that are far beyond what any of us could ask or imagine. As we harvest produce weekly, we believe that it is a tool that God has given to us to bless families, churches and local non- profits. We have seen that we cannot out- give God.
On April 21st-23rd some of our team traveled to Hurst, TX to attend a conference called Consumed by Love at Catch the Fire DFW with Alan and Nancy Smith. It was a time of fun, and experiencing the Father's love in greater measures. The theme of the weekend was when we are empty vessels, it gives God room to come and fill us with His Holy Spirit so we can be a light to the world. God does not just want to drip- feed us His love, but He desires to lavish all of His goodness over us so that we would "understand with full knowledge the height, width, length and depth of His love." As I said earlier, we become what we behold. As we allow God to abide in us fully, right where we are in our seasons of life, than we will learn how to abide in Him. When we are abiding in Him, we can love and see people for exactly who they are and can show them Christ.
In Matthew 28 Jesus commissions us to "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, the son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you." A few of our team members have been on the streets serving this month with Love & Care ministries. Love & Care is a local non-profit that tends to the needs of the poor and needy in our city. This month God has released incredible signs, wonders, and miracles including; the physical healings of backs and knees, freedom from emotional bondage, and salvations. One day, during a normal lunch hour, God provoked two of our team members, and a young girl that was joining them, to pray for a young man named Jonathan. God miraculously healed him and He gave His life to Jesus!! God likes to intervene and love people through us!! We are beginning to see more and more of these incredible acts of God as we step out in faith and love the one in front of us. Empty vessels, being filled with the glory of God. The essence of God Himself, flowing through us to touch a dying, and helpless world. On that note, our hearts are burdened for the refugees all around the world needing relief and replenishment of food, clothing and life's essentials. We are thankful for the opportunity to partner with Global Samaritan Resources in preparing shipments to be sent out all over the world, and specifically in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. We pray for those on the ground, that they would be able to bring hope for life, to all of those that they come in contact with. God cares about each person, and His heart breaks for the broken hearted.
Like most moves of God, there is a dream, a promise that He gives to help give us direction, after all, "He is the light to our path." We have been blessed this month to have our annual board meeting at IRIS Abilene: Camp Barkeley. It was a time of seeking the Lord on what He may have us do in the months, and years to come. We are incredibly blessed to have leadership that strengthens, encourages, speaks life, and infuses hope!! God is not done with IRIS Abilene: Camp Barkeley and we are moving forward. "Pressing on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God, which is Christ Jesus Himself."