(up)lift

tonight was truly incredible. what an experience i got to witness as the church i’ve attended is feeling more like a home.  i went as any other sunday: to learn and grow under great preaching, partake in communion, and participate with others in corporate worship of Jesus.  within minutes, all norms were broken.

a friend needed ushers to help people find chairs, so we quickly volunteered ourselves–an act i had never taken part of here at this big place.  God packed the house; there was not an empty seat as over 1000 young guys and gals overflowed the auditorium.  we struggled to seat groups, couples, and others seeking God’s work through Mars Hill.  a few minutes into the service, we took our place in the adjacent paradox theater to watch the streamed video of the sermon.  after communion and final songs, pastor tim was asked to play another song.  we went back into the main auditorium to witness the encore live, and to my surprise, it seemed hardly anyone had left–people were still standing on the back wall singing with energy, glory, and praise to God!  the service capped off with the announcement of the college mission midweek over at UW, and hundreds of students responded with ice cream, conversation, and community.

God is moving in this place, and what a blessing it is to be a part of it!  to top everything off, i arrived home to an e-mail informing me that my unnecessary 8:30 class is cancelled because it exists before the first lecture of the quarter..  this uplifting day is exactly what i needed prior to the beginning of another arduous set of classes and commitments.  God has his eyes on the righteous, and he will not turn away nor forget us.  i have much to learn, figure out, get through, and repent of, but how gracious is my God to place himself within the very time and culture of people like me.  he related to us and he loved us without expectation of repayment; he came to do what we could not, and he came to our rescue to endure the wrath of God that sinners like me fully deserve.  his name is Jesus and he is worthy of praise!

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