What can we say about this past week in Budapest? For us, it was refreshing, challenging, convicting and encouraging. For our Turks there is no doubt that it was life changing. By the end of the week, the light in their eyes was shining like I had never seen it before. The call of God is tugging at their hearts and it is a mystery to them. There could be no greater blessing than to see them broken by an incredible message or beaming after an amazing song service. These men received something supernatural this week.
For me, there is usually one particular message that really sticks with me after a conference. But this year, there were so many messages that were like arrows into my own personal walk of faith or like soothing balm to my own personal doubts and insecurities. Pastor Scibelli's message about a love that goes "above and beyond" gave me a fresh understanding of how a missionary could serve for 40 or 50 years and still be full of spiritual energy and love-motivated ministry. Pastor Schaller's message on suffering was absolutely unforgettable! His exhortation on alcohol was so heart-felt and right on with the mind of Christ. His message on being stuck between two opinions was so convicting and powerful. To think that I could be missing out on amazing spiritual growth because I have not truly sincerely chosen God's way! If God is God, then I can fully trust Him. If God is God, then I can give Him everything. If God is God, then my life can be sacrificed with joy. If God is God, then the things I hold dear can be gladly given. So how long will you stay between two opinions? Be persuaded that God is God!
Lastly, Pastor Matti said in a church-planting workshop: "People don't have to deserve our ministry. People don't have to deserve our friendship. Don't trust in your intuition about people, but minister in faith. Believe the best of all and be encouraged by God." This is the kind of love that covers sins. This is the kind of love that endures all things. This is the kind of love that we are constrained by.