First, let me just say that the lineup at Catalyst West was the best group of speakers I’ve ever seen at any one place/time. Every speaker at each session had some important things to say and did so very well. One of the highlights was Perry Noble, the last speaker of the week. He was a huge encouragement as he laid out a call to endure in the face of discomfort and pain. You Can Do This. It was sort of a run to the Gospel truth with a NASCAR foot to the floor. It was a great way to end the week.
“The size of the vision God will give me is directly related to the amount of pain and discomfort I am willing to endure.” The thing about these conferences is they can be overwhelming. You go and hear the exciting things God is doing through some pretty incredible leaders. But you know you’re going home to people that weren’t there – and you’re not going to be able to fully explain to them what happened. It can be frustrating to have such an infusion of encouragement and energy only to go home and get doused with the wet blanket of budgets, short-sighted plans, lack of commitment… There can be a let down a few weeks or even days after getting home.
Perry talked about Ezekiel in a valley of dry bones to tell a better ending to the post-conference story. He talked about how dryness leads to desperation for God and how God takes us through pain to show His provision (another one of those recurring themes for me all week). Even when things are dry – we need to trust Him.
Ezekiel knew that only God could account for the right answer to the situation He’d brought him into. He needed to believe (and did believe, as evidenced by his actions) that God could do hwat God wanted to do. “You alone know.” So when God told him to call the dry bones to life, that’s exactly what he did. There was a vision put into Ezekiel’s mind of dead bones returning to life, so He obeyed what God told him to do (even though it made no sense). We need to “consistently obey Jesus and be ready for God to move.
He interjected the question here, “What would you attempt for God if you knew it couldn’t fail?” What vision is He planting in our lives that we need to believe He can do? Are we courageous enough to act?
He finished with the thought that we need to Honor Him. God doesn’t need us sitting around waiting for Him to zap people into submission to Him. We need to not only take the first steps toward our vision, but we need to finish what we start. We need to see through to completion the vision God places within us and understand that He “is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine…”
After several days and a number of posts, I’m tempted to say that wraps up my Catalyst musings, but… I think we all know better don’t we???