Monday, July 02, 2012

Utah Mission Trip Update

The Utah Team is back, but here is the update from the last few days of their trip:

"Introverts make the best of friends because the social people are all about themselves"--Andrew Madsen

No sooner had the words left my mouth than I realized that I was testifying about myself; part of my big problem is self-glorification. Though Milton Vincent hits the nail on the head in his book, A Gospel Primer, when he writes:

"Compared to greater endeavors, self-love is mundane and tiresome. Consequently, the more thoroughly I can be done with such tedium, the freer my soul will be to soar at its God-intended heights."

Oh how this breathes so much truth in my own life. Here am I, broken by my sins before you and before God, more joyful than I have ever been. Because the lights turned on and I realized everyone was crying, so I stopped pretending i wasn't. God exposed me of my sin and I looked around to see us all broken--how beautiful. Simply the fact that God knew my wicked ways when he formed me but did it anyways... agape.

So instead of trying to love myself all of the time--God has helped refocus my all on Him. Instead of trying to be perfect enough to share Him with the world--I stand before you lavished with grace only wishing to give to others what has been given to me. And instead of worrying about what has yet to come--I am so in Love with the Lord our God.

Yesterday was our final day of Sports Camp. God demonstrated to us all how mighty he is as some of the rowdiest kids at the camp on Monday were the same ones asking how they could make Jesus the king of their hearts. He had taken some of the most selfish children at the camp and conquered their hearts with his love. Among all of the joyous stories was one of Jordan. His dad is the campus pastor at Alpine Church: Layton and his head was already full of the Gospel story; so when he asked me to pray with him I thought, awesome! perhaps he wants to pray for his fellow huddle-members or is learning more. It had not occurred to me that he was asking me to pray with him for his salvation. I opened the prayer and thanked The Lord for him and how much of a blessing it was to have him in my group, then he prayed silently to himself. When he said amen he told me of how he had thanked God for his loving family, for the Sports Camp, and all of the fun he had been having. But even more so how he thanked God for being a Big God and that his own problem wasn't too much for God to handle. When I heard this I rejoiced that an 8 year old was learning more about his faith. Little did I know that he also asked God to forgive him and be his King... I thought that that had already occurred. It wasn't until we went to the Layton campus last night for a worship service, and the pastor told us all--with true joy glowing-- that his son had accepted the Lord that day at Sports Camp. He told the congregation that Jordan was soooo excited when he got home to tell his dad that he wanted King Jesus to be the Lord of his life. I was struck by this with even more joy than before knowing that Jordan had come to faith; I couldn't hold back my tears--it was beautiful. Seeing how God worked even in my ignorance, my assumption was destroyed and my heart was filled.

I could hardly call my lack of current self-love loss, but instead liberating, to simply know that I don't have to waste my time building myself up for I stand on the Solid Rock. Now freed from such a burden I can spend my time praising and worshiping and glorifying and sharing the love of God. I am eager to see all of you soon and hear of how God is working in your life also but until that day...

Listen for Him

-Andrew Madsen

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