God’s Grand Masterpiece: Can you hear it?

Note: This is a devotional that I wrote for the 10 Days Devotional 2014. 10 days is an opportunity to set apart a season of seeking God together as the wider of body of Christ, in such a way that moves us beyond the walls of our own local churches, denominations, and ethnic groups.

10 Days starts this Wednesday in over twenty cities throughout the nation! Learn more about the 10 Days nationwide movement here, and 10 Days Boston here.


Day 1: God’s Grand Masterpiece

From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work. (Ephesians 4:16)

We all affirm Christian unity – but sometimes it’s difficult to imagine exactly what it is.

In my time of prayer the other day, Jesus showed me that the body of Christ is like God’s grand orchestra performing a symphony. In fact, our English word “symphony” comes from a Greek word meaning a “sounding together.”

In a good orchestra, as in the body of Christ, the uniqueness of each individual is celebrated. The booming low instruments coalesce with the twittering high instruments in a sort of a divine dance. Any good musician will tell you that in playing music together, the attitude of humility and honoring others above yourself is crucial. If any one group feels that they are the most important, the others get drowned out, and the melody is destroyed.

In a symphony, it is also vital that each person keeps his/her eyes on the conductor. Only the conductor sees it all and is able to direct each group to their proper place and in the right timing. If an individual were not to heed the direction of the conductor, this would have rebounding effects to every other musician, as well as the symphony as a whole.

When you listen to a symphony, distinct instrumental parts dwell within the others, becoming something far greater together than they are as individuals. The love of music that binds these musicians together is greater than any external differences that seemingly separate them. As they play together, they learn and grow as one, sounding forth a harmony that is both indescribable and wondrously beautiful.

At each of your 10 Days gatherings this year, seek to find the underlying tune, the sweet resonance of the harmony of Jesus within your brothers and sisters in Christ.

Listen for the sound of unity, of followers of Jesus coming together all around the nation and world to take part in God’s grand masterpiece. Can you hear it?


It’s Labor Day! Get out and Play

Highlights from this month:
Gearing up for 10 Days Boston! September 24 to October 4
Journey Church Free Community Car Wash
Labor Day was initiated in 1882 to create a holiday for workers. That means that Labor Day is a day for play! (hey, that rhymes!)

What are you doing on Labor Day?

This past month, I’ve incorporated a practice of asking myself every morning, “How are you doing?” and “What do you need?” and then inviting God into that conversation. It’s hard  to explain how this simple time of reflection has literally transformed my life, as I tend to be terrible at taking care of myself.

Gottfried Benn said that, “Whoever wants to understand much must play much” and I’ve begun to understand that one of my greatest needs in life is to play with friends.

This past month, I’ve swam in a waterfall waterside, completed the ice bucket challenge, and even floated in the midst of the sparkly bioluminescence in the ocean. At right, my friend Sarah and I with crazy seaweed hair during a ministry picnic.

Play gives me a fresh perspective on life and fills me with joy. In turn, I find that I’m more productive at work and overall a whole lot happier.

What about you? Are you good at taking care of yourself and tuning into what you need? I want to challenge you to incorporate this practice into your daily devotion time, so you can better take care of yourself and allow the fullness of who God made you to be to shine!

Read more about this in my sermon: Where the Spirit Dwells

UniteBoston Updates:

  • God is Uniting Boston with a Nationwide Prayer MovementWe are in the midst of a 40-day season of fasting and prayer leading up to October 4th.
  • It’s been so cool to see how God is bringing together the Christian Community in Boston – Check out 10daysboston.com to see the full line-up of geographical gatherings, ethnic groups, and denominational streams involved and watch the Youtube Video Update at right! If you don’t live near Boston, check out 10days.net for the 20+ locations throughout the nation taking part in these ten days of worship, fasting, and prayer
  • We had our first official UniteBoston Board meeting –  It is really great to have others oversee the mission of UniteBoston and the work we are doing in the city.

Journey Church Updates

  • Journey Church is preparing for our public launch on September 28! We are excited about this opportunity to welcome people home to Jesus and to the family of God. This week, our advertisements on the subway went up, and next week we will have a missions team from New York come to join us! Watch our Launch Video here
  • I organized a free car wash for the Cambridge community a few weeks ago, and we had an amazing response. We washed nineteen cars and had some amazing conversations with families in the area!

Prayer Requests and Praises!

  • Praise! I’m so thankful for how the Lord has rejuvenated me in this season and for the amazing friends He has placed in my life (yes, that’s you!)
  • Prayer! I’m beginning seminary this fall at Gordon Conwell’s Boston campus. I’m really excited about this opportunity to further my theological training and effectiveness as a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As such, my monthly expenses have increased. Let me know if the Lord is stirring you to be a part of the team of people that is sowing into all that He is doing through UniteBoston and Journey Church.  Together we can change the world!
  • Prayer! Finalizing all the logistical details for 10 Days Boston can be stressful – pray that I would find peace amidst all the moving pieces.
Ecclesiastes 3:13 says “It is a gift from God to be able to eat and drink and experience the good that comes from every kind of hard work.”

As important as it is for us to labor and work hard, it is to play. So get off your computer and go have some fun :)