Thursday, August 13, 2009

God did something for me this summer. I write so I never forget.

I did not like this summer. Spiritually, it was hard on me. Every day I felt mentally and emotionally assaulted, not by anyone, but by the enemy that seemed to reside very powerfully for 2 months at a summer camp I was at. It's hard to convince people when you're being abused spiritually because you are the only one who feels the way you feel...unless others around tend to be experiencing the same symptoms but don't know how to put a name on it. Early on, several people were having headaches, nightmares, and having problems sleeping (including myself). But a core group of us started praying hard for a few weeks. But most of the people who were praying kind of forgot about it when God started acting to protect us a bit. Needless to say, the one kind of assault that did remain was the assult on who I was as a man of God and who I was as a person. Knowing that little pre-story, I want to tell you how God delivered me and why he brought me there.

God continued to show me how he loved me. I need to write this so I never forget He, my Father loves me. It really started on august 7th of 2009. I woke up to the song in my head, "How he loves me" by John mark Mcmillan. It's a song I've only heard 2-3 times in my life. Out of nowhere, it wouldn't leave my head the entire day. I sang the chorus over and over and over with one part of a verse about a sloppy wet kiss over and over again, then "oh, how he loves us."

The day I was going to leave I went to pray. But this day I went to pray was different. I was angry and I was going to give God a piece of my mind. I screamed up through the forest in my car down an old timber road, stone faced, ready to cry if I was it bit more easily released of my emotions. So I yelled at God. I got out of my car, and walked to a nice spot and I cried out to God as loud as I could yell telling him how angry I was. "why am I here God?" "why did you send me here?" "I hate it" So God listened well and let me yell some before he calmed me down and then he showed me exactly why I was there. He wanted to stretch me. To make me stronger in spiritual warfare. It hurt so bad. I hated that camp. I hated the constant spiritual mental abuse telling me I wasn't worth it. That spirit of desolation was cruel and I prayed every single day against it. So I asked God, once I was calmed, "what time should I leave?" I got a strange word out of nowhere saying, "after basketball." I had been learning to listen to God because I know how he wants us to know his voice. So I thought that God said "after basketball." Honestly I shrugged it off as my own weirdness. I really wanted to leave right away, but felt for some reason it would be better to stay and see what's going on first.

When I finally got back to the camp, I walked over to the waterfront to see everyone. Low and behold, what happens? One of the high school workers at the camp asks me if I want to play basketball. I kind of thought...well maybe. Then I walked over to the fence and tracy, a girl worker at the camp asks me if I want to play basketball. Taking the hint, I say, "sure!" After this game, I decided I needed to go because this was after basketball, and so I did. I had no clue why, or even if God really told me after basketball. All I know is something in me told me that's what I should do.

I made it back to redding and Simeon, my buddy in redding is playing some basketball (strange, but yes). We talked some and he told me his friend hannah (who I know also) was inviting some people over. He said we could go after we played basketball (yes, I'm not joking, this is what he said). The events from here on in, I promise to you actually happened. The ones before also did, but they aren't as strange. Simeon said that if I came earlier, we could have gone to church, but I came a little later so we went to hang out with hannah and some of her friends.

So we're at hannah's house, eating. After we eat, we all played instruments so we decided to just have our own little worship service. Our guy with the guitar starts singing "how he loves us." I'm not going to lie, this song woke me up automatically. Not only was it the song that I could not get out of my head for an entire 12 hours the day before, but now it stirred my heart in a new way. I felt God confirming these words to me as we sang. Then we started singing "oh how he loves me," suddenly, I knew a whole new meaning of it all. God said, "I love you" in that song to me, not vocally but I realized something. I haven't been singing this song to him, he was singing it to me, he loves me. You don't understand what this meant to me after 2 months of mental torture with even my sister (unbiological, but she is my sister) hardly talking to me. I don't think it was her fault but it hurt me anyways and it left me with God so for that, I thank her.

After the song, our lead guitar guy asked us if anyone had a word. A nice guy named micheal looked directly at me and says, "you, I have a word for you matt." This is the first day I've ever met this guy. He said to me, "you are like a brick wall. Spiritual warfare will not be able to beat you. Spiritually you've been through alot this season, and God is making you strong." He said things along that line. He was 100% dead on. God was truly making me stronger and this was the second confirmation that day of what he was doing for me. That's why I went there and he was with me the entire time. That's why I came after b-ball. He loves me. He made those words in my mind till I was tired of it.

He loves you too. And it was a hard but a worthwhile summer. In the end. It's worth it all. I'd also like to thank everyone who prayed for me this summer, ezra, tom,dean, carolyn, simeon, and my parents. It all was working very powerfully.

Thank you Daddy, my strong Father. I'll always love you.


ezra of antioch said...

Thanks for writing about this Matt, I wasn't sure what the whole story was behind your desire for backup in the prayer department, but it is great when we get a clear refreshing picture of what God has done. He led you to green pastures and you needed it. I can see why that song is growing in popularity. We all need to know that He loves us, and to be that love to those who don't know him and to each other.

Matthew said...

amen to that. I think I'm going to try and sing that song as a special song during offering while I'm in town for a few weeks.