Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I can do all things...through Christ who strengthens me.

I was reminded of this verse this weekend as I sat in a field of color.
There was a group of us...5 in total that travelled to Oregon Ill, to attend an Exodus Conference. If you ever get a chance to go, GO! Especially in autumn, when the leaves are turning color. It was an awesome experience, just looking at the scenery.
But for me this wasn't the only thing that I felt in awe about. Here I am, 6 months out of a gay relationship. On a quest for holiness, knowing that I can do nothing without Christ who strengthens me. That I am utterly broken without him. I sat listening to people speak on Hope and restoration. That God pours out hope for this journey ahead. The question that was asked of us, was what did we get out of this weekend? For me, I was in tears most of the time. Both speakers, ministered to me in similiar ways. Both offered words of hope. That we are not alone in this journey or struggle. That we have others that are praying for us and encouraging us. That our focus should be on Jesus and having an intimate relationship with him. To base my healing on how straight I am or if I get married is nonesense. My healing is based on my relationship with Jesus. The desire to have that passionate relationship with him first and foremost is is what I desire. To lay my agenda down and just be wanting more and more of the Holy Spirit in my life. I felt "normal" at the retreat. I felt like I fit in and was comfortable. I had an amazing time with the 4 others from Winnipeg, who encouraged me and blessed me more than they know. The other people that I connected with down there too, I felt like I could be myself and let my hair down...this is in regards to Karaoke singing...okay singing Dead or Alive at the top of my lungs, pretty intense for me and I could have sung all night. The worship, sharing, messages were intimate.
So what did I get from the weekend? I got the chance to get better aquainted with the 4 other people in a wonderful way, tons of laughter and some tears. I got to know other people from the states who have incredible hearts and stories of redemption and hope. If you would have told me 6 months ago, that I would experience 2 Exodus Conferences and start placing my trust in God in a real way, I would have laughed at you. But, I am loving my life. I am loving the way God is orchestrating it. I love watching it unfold sometimes and I just become more thankful. It is still hard...hard facing issues that come up. Hard to face the realities of the struggle, but I am willing to do that. Before I would have closed off certain doors, due to pain that I did not want to face. Now, it is time to face them. Knowing that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
I was asked if I could read the last supper at the communion service on Sunday. It was a stretch for me. I usually do not like speaking in front of people, so I prayed hard. I asked God to take away the fear as well as take away my motives and agenda and that I would be an empty vessel, being used by God. It went okay. This is pretty much the first time speaking scripture out loud...and I hope to do more of it. So that speaking in front of people will come easier. God gave me strength to do it.
I travelled home from Living Waters today, not all that happy, yet not all that sad. I was tired and so my sharing was pretty unemotional. I felt though the presence of the Holy Spirit, and knew that I was being faithful in my sharing. The Holy Spirit showed me 2 pictures while the leaders prayed over me. One was a stream and my sin was being thrown into it and it was moving far away. Then I had a picture of a hallway in a castle and the secret doors were being opened and dust flying out. OOOOH! I could get scared here and close those doors, but it felt really good for them to open. It is what I have wanted to happen. So I will meditate on that this week.
So, I look forward in giving my everything to this journey. God is good, even when it hurts. There are good people around me that show me their hearts and tell me I am not alone...I am greatful to them.
Today, I feel like a man.

...on a side note, I had my best golf game ever...while in Oregon Ill. Thanks to the wonderful caddy and the two other golfers. Thanks too for the cheerleaders at the 9th hole. You all rock my world!

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