This morning was one of those mornings that seem too often a place of privilege that I share with the Lord. From every input this a.m., God seemed to be lacing together a message of His hand in my life. Seriously, from the first moment I opened my electronic PDA, to the walk down the driveway as I retrieved the early morning Journal; and then of course my “old leather friend” with its soiled pages and well inked margins that I have been reading since misplacing the sleeker, less worn contemporary NIV. (You’ll need to read previous entries to understand that statement).
First and of great interest to me is the dichotomy of human thought present in America today. My mind alerted to this in the early a.m. as I picked up the local newspaper and read of my descent from some twenty species, the lone survivor being the human that I am. The article was complete with photographs of ancient skulls of both the Neanderthal and Cro-Magnum man, setting me apart from a lineage of less human primates. Yet some of these same individuals, who will spend their lives in search of their origin, will be laid to rest by some well meaning clergy with select readings from ancient scriptures that proclaim a Creator who molded them from the dust and breathed into their nostrils the breath of life.
Interesting that this information was then layered on top of four questions read still earlier in the morning from Ravi Zacharias’ “A Slice of Infinity”, my favorite online morning devotional…Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going?
Then, in my attempts to get back on tract with my sequential reading of the scriptures, I opened my “substitute Bible” which just happened to have one of those red stick-on arrows, used to denote a place of signature on legal documents (where that came from I do not know) and there discovered a note in Nehemiah that read, Three stages of life: Cupbearer, Wall Builder, Governor.
My thoughts then went both to Daniel and to Joseph, two of my favorite leaders. Daniel, kidnapped as a teenager and taken to a foreign land, surviving a den of lions, then promoted to president! Joseph, a dreamer despised by his brothers, sold into slavery, imprisoned for a season of personal growth, then advancing like Daniel to one of the highest positions in this foreign land.
Okay, hard to follow? I know, and I often receive feedback of the layered nature of my writings, but this is how I think. I have to reconstruct the context that afforded the God moment that I am taking the reader toward. Maybe I need to become a better writer or a less complex thinker? Maybe I am too old to change or to think?
So, Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going?
You may have read an earlier entry A Cup Bearer for the King? My life has always been about serving leaders, a sort of second fiddle player in several organizations both secular and sacred. But then there was this moment where I began to look more intently at my own calling, one that was more about cities than churches. I recall more than one moment where I found myself walking through cities, praying over them, somewhat like I had read of Nehemiah, though I think he actually rode a mule around town!
Those prayer walking moments led me to a period in life when I actually began preparing for what I believed would be a necessary transformation, which I now believe is upon the church. Not one in which churches would come to better understand and deliver their craft, but a time when the Church would answer a long neglected call to their communities, to cities long deserted by Christians holed up in the sanctuaries of the now too numerous church campuses.
My life would be about rebuilding the walls, for such a time as when righteous men once again stepped into play in a nation trembling at its knees. That time is upon us!
Governor, well at this point only a mayor but that alone is huge given my background and relatively sudden ascent to public office.
These weeks continue to create a sense of wonder and privilege in me as I reflect on my almost forty year journey with Christ and reinforce my obligation to communicate to others this Journey to Delight. In fact, here would be a great place to announce that as the title of my next book, now in the hands of an editor.