Broken in Nebraska
I was standing, sweat-soaked, in a field, just watching people pray.
A good friend of mine had just given an invitation to say “yes” to Jesus from the LifeLight Festival stage in Hastings, Nebraska, and a number of young people had begun to move towards a side tent to pray with someone about the decision they had just made.
I was just standing and watching it all happen, partially because it was encouraging to watch the volunteer prayer team treat the newcomers with such obvious compassion, and partially because the 96 degree heat and suffocating humidity had sapped most of my strength and honestly, it just felt good not to move.
And then my wife tapped me on the shoulder.
“Hey, there’s this young guy standing over by our merch tent and I think he might want prayer…”
“Where?” I looked over and saw the young man – his longish dirty-blond hair was swept over his eyes and he was holding himself at an obvious distance from the crowd around him.
“Yeah I see him…” I took a deep breath to clear my head, “sure, I can totally go talk to him.”
A moment later I was standing in front of him, preparing to break every unspoken cultural rule of coolness by asking a deeply personal question to a complete stranger.
“Hey man, so this might sound like a super weird question…”
He turned to look at me with a blank expression and simply stared.
It was looking like this conversation might end up being a little more difficult than I had expected.
“It looks like maybe you might be, like… going through something. Is there anything that I could maybe pray for you about?”
He continued to stare at me, unblinking.
And then I noticed it… his eyes had begun to well up with tears.
“Yeah actually…” he grimaced slightly, “I think my girlfriend is going to break up with me today and I don’t know what I’m gonna… could you maybe just pray for me about that?”
“Ahhh, that’s rough – I’m so sorry man – I can totally pray for you about that…”
I prayed with him for several minutes – he told me that he had already said “yes” to Jesus, but that he had invested himself pretty completely into his relationship with his girlfriend, and he was terrified of losing her.
It’s easy to judge emotional pain and relational heartache, but there is a reason that Proverbs 4:23 says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Heart issues can be profoundly painful, and Jesus cares about our pain, and always wants to bring healing and restoration.
“Listen man,” I looked at him pointedly after praying and he met my eyes, “no matter what happens, will you promise me something?”
“Will you remember that you’re priceless to Jesus and that He promises that He’ll never leave you alone, no matter how alone you may feel? Because I know what it’s like to have a broken heart and it’s terrible. And will you promise to find a guy you trust who loves Jesus that you can talk to about this if it gets too tough to handle on your own? Will you do that?”
“Yeah. Yeah I will. I promise…” he looked a little embarrassed for a moment and so I just reached out and gave him a hug.
“I’m proud of you man,” I let him go and made eye contact, “I’m proud of the way you’re holding on to Jesus in this.”
“Yeah thanks… Hey um…” he brushed his hair out of his eyes and shifted awkwardly on his feet… “I just wanted to say thanks so much for talking to me, it just… it just means a lot, you know?”
I noticed that his eyes were welling up with tears again.
And it’s possible that mine were too.
And this is why we do what we do.
All over the world, people desperately need to experience the freedom, forgiveness, and healing that only Jesus can offer and we’re committed to share this life-changing message of Jesus with as many people as possible worldwide.
Since April of 2017, we’ve had the privilege of watching God move powerfully all over the world. We saw thousands respond to Jesus in twelve nations and territories on five continents – we’ve just finished up a packed few months of events in Israel, the West Bank, and across the American South and Midwest, and have just returned from Biarritz, France, where we were helping train the next generation of world-changers at a YWAM missions school. Now we’re preparing for some exciting opportunities to share the love of Jesus in Belize, Pakistan, and across the American Midwest this year.
THANK YOU for helping us share the love of Jesus worldwide. Our vision is to follow God’s leading and help reach as many nations and people as we can with the message of Jesus, and your partnership helps us reach the world together. If you’d like to help, click HERE to partner financially and follow us on FACEBOOK for daily prayer updates from the field.
Thank you so much, friends, and God bless you! You can also listen to our latest CD, LOVE IS WIDE on ITUNES or SPOTIFY. Also JUST IN CASE YOU MISSED IT – CLICK HERE for our full 2017 Ministry Report. Check it out and enjoy!
Also, check out our just-released acoustic collaboration with HISPOP HERE - filmed live in Malta!