At an early morning men’s breakfast this week, I reconnected with a young man who grew up in our church. Over a Texas omelet he shared about his life. “Recently, my engagement ended. I choked at a key competition and ended the athletic career I had trained for for more than twelve years, and in the midst of all this, my dad’s cocaine addiction destroyed my parent’s marriage. I was dead inside—time to get back to basics and the first commandment was a good place to start. When my life cratered, I remembered Jesus’ grace in my childhood, but had to admit that I didn’t love His Father and wasn’t that concerned about my sin. Where do you go to find conviction and a passion for God?”
Like David in Psalm 143, my young friend shared how he began to stretch out his hands in prayer.
“I stretch out my hands to You. In the core of my being I reach for You like thirsty ground. Selah Hurry, answer me, O LORD, my spirit is finished.
Don’t hide Your face from me, or I will become like those who descend to the pit.” Psalm 143:6-7
In verse 2 of this cry for help David confronts us with the reality that none can stand before God on our own and get acquitted (Psalm 143:2). My young friend confessed how for years he thought he was a good guy, but then the Spirit exposed how he compared himself to others and gave himself an A. This pride was serious sin.
As we left the restaurant, it was his eyes that got me. They were alive, filled with passion for God. He was on fire. The LORD has answered his prayer and he’s getting prepared to bring the gracious Good News to one of the most needy people groups in the world.
LORD, I need that sensitivity to my sin and the same passion in my heart and in my eyes that You are giving to my friend. Help me each day to be willingly active in bringing Your face to everyone I meet.
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