Alright, mates? (aka Whazzup ma’ dudes?)
I can’t even begin to describe how amazing London has been, let alone the fact that I’ve only been here for ONE WEEK. It boggles my mind really. This city is incredible; I love the people and the accents and the cockney (“tea leaves” = thieves, “chewing a baby” = holding a baby, etc.); I love the red buses, the red telephone booths, the fact that EVERYTHING is in ENGLISH. Hallelujah.
Last week consisted of orientation-ish things, but mainly we were on our own to explore London and find an apartment (which we had already done before coming over!). First of all, I love the pub culture here. There are pubs on every corner, not to mention coffee shops and bookstores that are sprinkled between. We visited Cecil Street the other day which is the street that inspired Diagon Alley in HP. We also did a Royal Palace walking tour –which was awesome—and took a trip to Greenwich.
We got settled into our apartment on Friday which is only a 5 minute walk from school and in one of the best neighborhoods to live in-- Bloomsbury. Not to mention that THE British Museum is basically our backyard! All the museums here are free, too, so today we casually ran through an exhibit before lunch and saw ancient artifacts as old as 1.8 million years old, including the Rosetta Stone (the REAL one).
Sunday evening I attended my first ever Hillsong London church service which is in a ginormous theatre just down the street from me. It was actually really refreshing :) For all those who have been to a Mountain Top at least once in their life, it was basically a power session, except in a two story theatre that seated about 2,000 with every seat filled with a young person my age (and that was only their evening service).
It was really cool because Brian Houston, the man who founded Hillsong church, was visiting from New Zealand and gave the message for that night. He shared a few verses from Psalms 65, about how our God is a God of overflowing, or outpouring. But he went on and talked about how there are many things that God wants to do with our lives that He just can’t because of “lack.” “Lack” can come in many different forms, and yes, we are a limited man living in a limited world. However, one of the worst things we can do in our relationship with the Lord is prohibit ourselves from being developed to the fullest we can be, or our God-given, God-ordained potential. This is a very scary line to walk because it’s so easy to get too wrapped up in our dreams or careers or families, and they can pull us away from God. The thing is, this fear of falling off the path causes many Christians to not even try to walk the path or sometimes to even look down on others who are attempting to move forward. It’s a healthy concern, but I believe it’s also an incredible ploy of the enemy because one of his biggest goals is to keep us from being useful to God. The more we are developed fully, the more the Lord can use us. It makes sense that the enemy would attack this process.
Anyways, going into this year, there were so many concerns and doubts and anxieties that I had about this year. I was quite clear from the Lord that this was where He wanted me to be and what He wanted me to be doing, but I couldn’t help sometimes questioning His plan for me (how silly we humans are) and wondering if it was better for me to stay involved with Campus Crusade at Syracuse, or take a year off to do the labor (sorry guys, the one-year Christian Internship) and serve the saints and young people in Cleveland.
Hearing the message Sunday night, it actually made me quite fearful in a healthy way concerning how dangerous “lack” can be-- how all that lack really does is diminish our God-given potential. One of the things that scares me the most is that I would waste time here on this earth and lose opportunities or turn down possibilities that could shape me and mold me into a better servant of Christ.
I truly believe that’s why I just spent an entire four months living in Florence, and why I’m going to be spending the next four months living in London. I have faith that the Lord is developing me in a certain way that could never be achieved if I was still at home. I know I’m changing, but I don’t know how…and I don’t think I need to know. What’s important is that I am the Lord’s, from now until eternity.
I am not my own. I was bought with a price. And my desire is not to please man but to glorify God with all my heart, my soul, my mind, and my strength.