So Apple’s just held their annual keynote presentation September just past.
They made some really crazy announcements over what seem to be the biggest leap since their original iPhone release, and got the whole world talkin’ and buzzin’.
And this gadgety, tech-loving husband of mine? — He stayed up all night to watch its launch.
Yeah, who cares about getting up early for work the next day?
The excitement of it all kept him up and going.
He’s done that these last couple of years.
It’s the full anticipation of it, he said.
And the expectation of seeing promises delivered, and fulfilled.
Funny how it’s a raised level of expectation that raises a heightened level of affection.
Every year he walks away and climbs to bed satisfied.
Every year he tells his half-disinterested half how he’s forever an Apple fan.
For the rest of his life.
And for the bunch of us going to church camp that late September weekend?
We too were bursting forth in our seams waiting for God to do what He alone can do.
Because faith dares to meet God and cries for the new in the midst of the sagging old.
And church camps can be a place of visitation.
Desperate gatherings can be a moment of holy habitation.
Heartfelt worship, our time to see our barrenness covered.
And we can walk away full.
And when you’re inwardly desperate for a breakthrough and all things new?
You make hard core decisions about the past that block the path to the new.
You weigh your ‘Egyptians‘ – habits, sins, choices and attitudes – and see if they are worth the keeping, or if you want to bid them a forever farewell.
Because this is the burning truth, our God assuring our victory in the face of any defeat, discouragement, despair and disillusionment:
“Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again.”
To us desperate to see the old turn into new, He promises — “You name it and I’ll nail it”.
Yeah, go and name all your Egyptians, and see Him nailing them one by one.
Come late September, you’re our turnaround, you’re our new beginning.
Because today is the time we draw the line in the sand and say: ‘Be gone stagnation, be removed confusion, be broken glass ceilings. We will stake our lives on His promises and believe that we can be all His Word says we can be.”
And what’s stale and stagnant be made afresh and flowing again?
And you can almost see it in our faces.
Hear it in our stories.
Sing with us as we gut our hearts out in proclaiming what we believe.
A new breath of heaven — God sowing seeds in desert lands and blossoming them again, regardless your old.
He can cause your past to pave your way for a brand new comeback.
So right now, right here, — right in the midst of being able to unlock the phone with your face, and using your your watch on your wrist as your smart phone, we can embrace the new — the opening up of all dams of locked up treasures and buried visions, right in the midst of seeing our face in His, and joining our hearts to His heart.
Because when God moves into the picture of our lives, we need no longer be entangled, bound, crushed — because His one single word can propel us straight into the future marked for us.
So we too are making our announcements this late end of the year.
It’s never too late. We’re never too old.
We too can be crazy enough to start a brand new year with new budding seeds of hope, and life.
And this is the habit we will wear to unlock the future with our faith: the sealing of our victory with the confession of our lips.
And we say it slow, but sure: God’s breakthroughs are coming our way in shafts of light for our every broken fracture.
And every heart anticipating the new is chorusing it loud and clear: His love is overwhelming us more than our troubles can overcome us. His power is delivering us more than our enemy can ever destroy us.
We are ready for a new tomorrow.