Friday, 29 November 2013

Overflow of Grace.

"We have seen his glory...full of grace and truth...for from His fullness we have received grace upon grace" John 1:14-16

The Lord is so full of grace and truth that the undeserved gift He bestows upon His beloved children is overflowing with grace upon grace. He spilt His blood not in a minimal portion, but drained it to the last drop for so that we could be sanctified.

The Lord has been opening my heart to greater understand this truth of abundant grace; it is completely undeserved and often neglected in result of my carnal flesh. This is a season of Thanksgiving and praise for the ample blessings that we have. This is one significant blessing that I hope I do not just reserve for my Thanksgiving meal when we all go around and state what we are thankful for. I hope and pray that I will be driven to proclaim this life giving truth with every breath that comes out of my lungs.

It has been too long since my last post, for that I apologize. I write now from Indiana, in a house filled with welcoming people that I have never met. Though separated by geography and being genetically diverse, we have found indescribable unity through the blood of Christ that acts as a glue holding us all together. This has led me to greater appreciate the love and support of my family and friends back in Abbotsford. I have been in Chicago for over 3 months and I am consistently reminded of the prayers covering me and sincere questions of "How is Mitch doing" that are asked of my parents throughout the weeks. 

Moody has been a season where I have both been surviving and thriving. Being quite different from my experience at CBC, I have had to adapt to new rules, different professors, a huge city and new friends. The most amazing thing is that God is constant everywhere, there is no location in which God is not/cannot go. I have been able to do a lot of work with the marginalized people here in Chicago on a few different levels. I have been volunteering at a homeless shelter and with a few other students at Moody providing daycare for the children of homeless and single mothers. My heart has truly been breaking over these kids each week. They are not well behaved and lack discipline to the standards that I have been raised, but we are able to show the love of Christ to them each week through stories, games, songs and simply through our presence. I also have been able to be involved with Moody's homeless ministry called Frontlines. I have been going out every Tuesday night, giving out sandwiches, blankets and clothes to the homeless on the streets surrounding the campus. My mindset has been challenged and my heart healthily convicted each and every week from these ministries. The Lord is working, yet it is hard to go back to the dorm to my warm room and bed when I know I have friends that struggle just to find a place to lay their heads. Have you thought about that lately?

The semester is truly winding down now, so I only have a couple weeks left of actual classes and then I have exams. I look forward to going back to Abbotsford for Christmas break, coming home on Dec 20. Thank you for all of your support and prayers!

I would really appreciate to have prayer that God would continue to open doors of ministry for me as I am here in Chicago, and that He will use me to see the advancement of His Kingdom. Pray for the people that I am meeting with weekly, and that the Lord would reveal His Spirit to them that they may believe in His glorious truth. Also, I would humbly ask for trust that God will continue to provide financially for me as I am at Moody, both for flights and for tuition costs.


Saturday, 17 August 2013

Just a Glimpse of Guidance

I sit here with my possessions...two bags, a backpack, a skateboard and my plane ticket to Chicago. Common sense beckons me to stay BUT the Lord urges me to walk in faith (Psalm 119:105). We have the choice to live in security and ease or to live in obedience which promises us nothing less than the hope and prize of standing before the Holy One in eternity...but that choice is left to us.

"Where shall I go from your Spirit?
    Or where shall I flee from your presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
    If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
9 If I take the wings of the morning
    and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
    and your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
    and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to you;
    the night is bright as the day,
    for darkness is as light with you." - Psalm 139:7-12

This step is not one of loneliness or a time of separation from the David declares in this beautiful Psalm that whether we are in the depths of the sea, near death or covered by darkness, the right hand of the LORD is holding us and specifically holding me. This declaration is hard to comprehend and trust as I sit here surrounded by strangers with my few possessions. But following the life of David as he fled for his life from Saul's army and fought countless battles in the name of Yahweh, it humbles me and allows me to understand even a faint glimpse of the guidance of our Lord and Father.

I leave my base camp of Abbotsford to Chicago for a first session of four months in the Windy City, the third largest city in the US, and the Moody campus is in the core of downtown. I will be engaging in new and exciting studies of the Word of the Lord, and most likely this is the first trip of many over the next 3 years as I finish my BA in Biblical Studies.

I cannot express the thanks that I have for the overwhelming support I have been showed by family, friends and my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. Your prayer has been such an indescribable blessing and I ask with sincerity that as you think of me you would continue this prayer over at my time at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. Pray that I would be willing to allow Him to mold and shape my mind to focus on His glory and that I would be attentive to the wisdom and knowledge He would reveal to me about Himself. The Lord provides and continues to provide over all of the logistical things that need to be done and the finances for this adventure, God is so good! 

"One thing have I asked of the Lord,
    that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
    all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
    and to inquire in his temple." Psalm 27:4

Monday, 22 July 2013

Meant For More

My phone rings in April, unknown number...I decline... a voicemail is left

"Hey Mitch, this is Keats Camp, and we are wondering if you would be interested in being a camp speaker this summer"

Me: "Do you know that I am only 20 years old..." and after prayer and thought I accept...

The past months have been a time of preparation, meditation, studying and prayer on the topic of "Meant for More" all because of this call I received to speak at Keats Camp. It has been a time (and still is) of anxiousness, excitement, fear and growth by the power of the Lord. Where do I go with this huge subject I asked myself, the answer from the Lord was "You mean, where do I want you to go with this?"

And so the preparation began and now I type this with only one week until I am speaking at Keats Camp, July 29-Aug 5th. I have learnt so much through this topic of being Meant for More. It is so powerful, as sons and daughters of the Most High, we are not to mold into the crowd and hide ourselves from the world, we are not lit as lamps to be hidden underneath a blanket says Christ in Matthew 5. We were created by the one and only triune God with a unique purpose to spread His name and gift to all. We are to carry, defend, represent, trust and live out His Word and many things that could be spoken on in the Bible to fit this subject but yet such little time with these campers to speak. God leads.

Gift of Christ...Hope...Life of David

I have been studying and reading through the life of David with a mentor and friend of mine and God began to tug on my heart, I knew that this man of God was to be a main part of my camp talks. David's life displays swimming against the current as the salmon run. He was not perfect, but he held to the promises of the Lord and allowed for them to be fulfilled in God's timing. I am going through a few major sections of David's life and pointing them back to the living hope (which distinguishes us) that we have in Christ Jesus.

"But what about these young hearts and minds, God I do not want to misrepresent your Word..." - Luke 21:15 ...I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict"

I fear the Lord and His Word, but I am strengthened in knowing that He will direct my words to be what He intends to speak into these young hearts and minds. Please pray with me as I speak from July 29-Aug 5th that the Lord will be calling to His children and that they will have softened hearts and that they will answer to His call and receive salvation. Also pray that I will be diligent in discerning what is of the Lord and what is of my own carnal mind as I am speaking every night, for I dare not speak of my own thoughts, only His.

To God be the Glory, Forever and Ever. Amen.