Saturday, May 15, 2010

Tell a new story. Well, live it first!

This weekend I'm bringing the "keynote" to several hundred men at the Spring Hill United Methodist Church outside of Tampa.

In preparing the message, I've realized two things. First, while they want me to talk about "GET REAL; a spiritual journey for men", a lot of the stories that come to mind are from "The Unmaking of a part-Time Christian". The second observation is this: Even more of my stories are new; they're not in any book and there's a good chance they never will be.

So what's going on? Well, that's best explained in terms of a letter I received from a young man who had been challenged profoundly when he read GET REAL. He wrote a long letter to me that was full of good stuff. But one line he used will never leave me. "The stories I was telling were getting old..." he said.

I'm not sure that I can think of a better way to express the truth about what happens when we allow our relationship with God to grow stagnant. The old stories are great, and we should tell them again from time to time. But God wants to do a new thing in my life and yours, and God pretty much wants to do it every day.

That's what's going on this weekend with the stories I'll be sharing at Spring Hill UMC. God is doing a new thing; God wants to do a new thing in each of our lives; God does not want you to rely on those stories from the past.

If this was a benediction - and it sounds like one coming in to this paragraph - I'd say this. "Go into this new day with the reality of possibility strong in your spirit. Talk with God, give this day over to Glory. Live a new story."
- Amen - DEREK

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