What’s up everyone!! I must say, I am EXHAUSTED, but not in a bad way. Beware, because this may get long haha. For the past three days, I have been at Passion Conference 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. Gathering with 50,000 other 18-25 year olds, we all lifted up the name of Jesus to bring in the New Year. From Hillsong United and Passion Band, to Francis Chan, Levi Lusko, John Piper, and Christine Cain, the conference was so full of the Word that I am still digesting all that was taught.
In addition to the powerful word, we were involved in family groups where people from all over the world got together to discuss our lives, and to go deeper into the messages that we heard. Me personally, I only knew one person from my group, and that was totally fine with me. Over the course of the three days, we asked each other penetrating questions, such as, “Do you feel like God is withholding anything from you?” I actually would like to pause to ask all of my readers that. Do you feel like God is withholding anything from you? If so, what? Feel free to comment. But back to regular scheduled programming… My group delved extremely deep, where we talked about our scars and how those scars have affected us even today. Overall, I learned about how important it is to have people to walk with through life, because that is where growth happens. It is also so refreshing to have people to call when the pains of life hit.
The messages were so impacting for me. I received extraordinary amounts of profound wisdom from the speakers. Christine Cain spoke about endurance; how we (especially millennials) need to not focus on where we want to be, but to be satisfied where we are, and to continue to grow and endure process. We are so honed in to instant gratification, that it gets nearly impossible to wait for the best. One example is with marriage. We are so consumed by needing a companion that we don’t wait for the best person God has for us. I encourage everyone, including myself, to wait for God to provide the absolute best for us.
Out of all of the messages, the talk by John Piper wrecked my heart in the biggest way. He spoke about how the ultimate evil is when we begin to desire other things and people over the desire of God. True satisfaction comes from Him leading and guiding us through the journey of life, and to enjoy Him while living out what He calls us to do. We really need to understand that God doesn’t want to withhold anything from us, but that He desires to give us the right things in the best way. John tells us that “It should utterly shock us when we follow the path of evil.” This hit me so hard because honestly, desires of my heart have bigger priority than what God desires for me. Once we really see that God wants the best for us, we can trust Him and His promises, which leads to the desire of the Lord over things that this world can try to give us.
This leads me to the message Levi Lusko gave. He titled “Second Wind.” He spoke about how to suffer for God in the right way. “When we ask God to make us a fragrance for Him, we should know that means that we will need to be crushed.” True dependence on God is our second wind. We can’t do anything in our own strength. This made me sit back in my chair because I want to be in control of situations I face in life, but God is saying that He can be trusted for me to give up my control. This is so key in life because God loves us so much that He gives us a second wind to depend on Him to guide us through the toughest parts of life into our destination.
Overall, the conference was ASTOUNDING. I was able to share a hotel room with my closest friends from church, and to experience the love of God with 50,000 other people was amazing. I am already counting down the days until Passion 2018!! Feel free to comment your thoughts and questions.