Union Grove, Wisconsin
I knew this was going to be a great series of meetings when I was told that the host for the presentations was going to be the Ironwood Chophouse and Saloon in Union Grove, Wisconsin (www.Jesus4skeptics.com)!
This was by far one of my favorite series I’d done in quite a while. So many pitched in and played a part to make these meetings not only fun, but also what I consider to be a genuine success for the Kingdom. It was one of the smallest series I’d ever done, which gave it a more relationally intimate feel for all who attended. And I’m happy to say that the meetings resulted in 24 folks from all walks of life and varying backgrounds now wanting to continue their experience with Jesus and one another through open, mutually participatory gatherings on a regular basis, learning how to practice the “one anothers” of the New Testament.
One person from the group that sponsored the meetings sent out an email after the first weekend. The message was about a dear lady whose name I have changed to Susan to protect her identity. You will understand as you read it.
“I have to relate a story told to me by a woman who has been coming to The Jesus Dialogue the past two nights; her name is Susan. I first met Susan over the phone when she called for more information after receiving her connecting card in the mail. Susan is a postal worker who also happens to be a follower of Jesus. She said that she was so impressed by the subject matter in the connecting card that she felt moved to share it with one of her customers. Now Susan, I remind you, is a federal employee, and for a federal employee sharing your faith on the job can be fairly risky business to your fellow employees and much more to customers. But Susan was so impressed that this was what she needed to do, despite the consequences. And for Susan, her fears were realized when she was called into her postmaster’s office because a complaint had been received from the customer with whom she shared the connecting card. The point is, Susan was willing to risk all to follow her convictions to promote an event that she was not even personally invested in, featuring a speaker she had never even heard of . . . Susan’s last line in her story to me had the greatest impact, and nearly brought me to tears. She said that she was willing to share that connecting card, even if it meant losing her job over it. In fact she said that if she had lost her job (she hasn’t so far) it would have been all right because she was confident that God would take care of her. She just knew it was the right thing to do. Susan is a person who obviously sold out to Jesus. We think that the main purpose of this event was so that we could teach something to others, but I learned something from Susan. Am I as sold out to Jesus? Would I risk as much as she did?”
“Susan” is one of the 24 we mentioned above.
Wherever this finds you, keep being Jesus to the world you come in contact with each and every day. Keep loving like Jesus, living like Jesus and humbly serving like Jesus. Keep enlarging the Kingdom, one person at a time, till a world where love reigns is the only world that remains. The gospel truly is revolutionary.
And for all who were praying for this event, thank you. The journey of following Jesus has begun for many who attended. Keep them in your prayers, too, as we all endeavor to continue to put on display the radical, other-centered, self-sacrificial love of God as revealed through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. And to any of the twenty four, if you happen to be reading this . . . Welcome to the Kingdom!