On the cover of last week’s Relevant Magazine
was Pete Greig, founder of the worldwide 24-7 prayer
movement. (Just don’t call him that to his face. He doesn’t seem to like it very much.)
Pete is cool for many reasons. Mainly because he’s British. Which means he has all sorts of cheeky sayings (like “cheers mate”) and he adds flavor and color to otherwise bland words by spelling them with the letter ‘u’ (flavour and colour, for example).
Pete came to Asbury last year to encourage our fledgling little campus house of prayer. Hearing him speak was an important experience for me. It stirred and provoked desires in me that weren’t really dormant, but had certainly been stealing a nap. I already read (mostly) his book Red Moon Rising,
and resonated strongly with the story—a story of a truly significant move of God… the kind that starts small but swells so fast you can’t possibly keep up. You can try to stay ahead of it, but you just end up bent over, holding your side, huffing “Go ahead without me. I’ll catch up later.”
I’ve always wanted to be part of something like that. Always. Since I was a kid, my favorite stories have always been about a small group of friends facing ridiculous odds. Their only hope is a fool’s hope. But they risk it, and somehow come out on the other side. Looking back, it seems like the end is inevitable. Meant to be. But in the thick of it, you have no clue how things are going to turn out for good. (Think Sam and ‘the stories that really mattered.’)
Seeing that cover immediately sparked a memory. Early last spring I spent a day with a mentor and a friend at the Abby of Gethsemane, tucked away in the Kentucky hillside. It was raining hard, and we were walking a trail surrounded by trees. I was wrestling with what to do after graduation, a months long struggle. Sarah and I were still unsure if planting a church was the right thing. There were so many unknowns, so much fear, so much potential for flat out failure.
That’s when I thought of Pete. And his story. How I had always wanted to be part of a story like that. Always. Was this that chance? Was it worth the risk of failure?
I knew then that my heart had taken another strong step toward Chapel Hill. And it wanted to drag me along.
I was so deep in thought I didn’t see it coming. But at that moment—exact moment—the trail led us out of the trees, a wide clearing opening up around us. The gray sky made the green field seem that much more vibrant and fresh.
The same thing happened in my heart. Something opened up. My will baptized beneath the first rain of spring. It wasn’t the
moment, but it was a moment on the long road to yes.
Labels: asbury, Jesus, love chapel hill, pete greig, story