So after an incredibly slow, long and hot journey, we got home this afternoon from a fantastic few days at Spring Harvest, Minehead. It was a brilliant time of teaching, worship, gigs, and time with family and friends. I especially enjoyed seeing Philippa Hanna in concert. I find the way she shares her story around the songs engaging and encouraging. My favourite song of hers is called ‘new for old’, a beautiful song that captures that father heart of God about how no-one is beyond repair in his eyes, and that He can take the broken, the thrown away and bring restoration… you should check it out, it is beautiful.
So the theme at Spring Harvest this year was ‘immeasurably more’ and we focused on Ephesians 3 v 17-20 where it looks at grasping ‘how wide and long and high and deep’ God’s love is, and how he can do ‘immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine’. I feel God wants us to try to see just how incredible, and amazing His love for us is and for us not to limit Him. I find this challenging as it’s so easy to fall into thinking , ‘Oh, how lovely! God loves me… splendid’ and then just getting on with life in our own strength and direction.
But I believe that God not only wants us to know more about his amazing love for us but to also know that he has more for us than we can ever even begin to imagine. That’s exciting, challenging and terrifying at the same time! It is easy to make achievable goals for ourselves, but I feel that there are times when God encourages us to dream big and not put limits on what God can do in and through our lives. I want to make a difference in this world, to be ready to stand up for Christ even when that means adversity and that means being an example of love, mercy, justice, kindness.
When we step out in faith in the dream that God has put on our hearts, we need to do it in his strength and not ours and we need to trust him even when we don’t understand why He is doing something! This is something that I have seen so literally with my 20 month old son Dominic. He is getting to that point where he is trying to be really independent . He loves walking, running off and exploring and does not want to hold my hand at all as he wants to do it all on his own! However when crossing the road I make him old my hand. You would think I was torturing him as he desperately tries to pry my hand off, and when that doesn’t work will throw himself on the floor and have a very dramatic paddy! What he is failing to understand is that I am holding his hand because I love him and want to protect him from the cars and dangers that he just can’t see. He has his goal in mind, but if I am not there, he would get hurt. I can see this as parallel with us and God. He wants us to dream big, step out in faith and trust Him even when we can’t understand what he is doing.