In the last 48 hours it has probably rained a total of 30 hours. It's also cold. My phone doesn't work and the pay phones are out. To tell you the truth, I wouldn't have it any other way. There are around 120 on staff here at JH and we are gathered from various states and denominations across the country. Granted, it has its challenges, but it's also exciting. It's exciting to see how the Lord is not only bringing us together and unifying the staff as a whole, but also how He's changing each one of us individually. Myself, I've never felt more free and more confident in the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Perhaps one of the neatest things that the Lord has emphatically iterated over my life in the last week is the power of His name. Yeshuah, YHVH, Jesus Christ---all are His name. What is amazing about the name Yeshuah is that it literally means, in Hebrew, "I Am Salvation". I think this is absolutely phenomenal. Judaism denies Yeshuah as the prophesied Christ, and yet the man's name means "I Am Salvation". I love it! I have also become really good friends with a fellow staffer named Peter who is a Messianic Jew. He spent 8 months in Israel literally debating with the religious leaders there. It's so cool to hear his stories about the challenges, successes and failures that he endured through the entire experience in that the Lord used those challenges, successes and failures to increase his faith in Himself.
There are no guests here at the Ranch as of yet. Currently, my known responsibilities include being head of the Alpine Tower and Screaming Eagle, which are two of the ropes challenges offered here. Also, I serve on the pastoral team. This includes the responsibility of serving 5 of my fellow staff guys through intercession and bible study. I am excited about what the Lord is already doing here and what He is continually teaching me and bringing me into. He's stretching my mind and my faith. Thank you for all the prayers and am praying for you all as well. I am leaving you with a testimony that was shared this past week regarding a guest that attended the ranch this past year.
A man's son was found at the bottom of their swimming pool. By the time this 5 year-old boy was retrieved from the water and transported to the hospital, the doctors estimated that the boy had been submerged for at least ten minutes. It was under this assumption the the doctors declared the boy brain dead and told the parents that survival was unlikely and that if the boy did survive, he would be a vegetable for the rest of his life.
The parents didn't know what to do. Friends and family supported them through prayer and encouragement. One family friend mentioned that he'd heard about a pastor in southern Florida who raised people from the dead. Skeptical but in a corner, the parents contacted the pastor and he agreed to come in. After arriving, the pastor went into the boy's room by himself and prayed. After several minutes the pastor emerged from the room and told the parents that their boy would be well in 72 hours. Without anything or anyone else to hope in, besides the Lord and the words that this pastor spoke, the parents agreed to keep their son on life support for the next 72 hours.
Sure enough, in 72 hours, the boy was sent home from the hospital.
Months after the accident, the dad was driving his car with his son in the back seat. Without warning, the boy asked his dad the question, "Daddy, do you want to know what Jesus looks like?" The dad was taken off guard by the question, but agreed t hear the boys answer. After listening to his son's brief description, the dad responded, "Can I ask you a question? Did Jesus talk to you or say anything to you while you were with him?" The little boy looked at his dad from the back seat and said, "Yes Daddy He did. He said that I needed to go home, so I did."
***This father and son attended the Parent/Teen summer program in the summer of 2007. I hope you are in awe of our Lord after reading this, as much as I was at least. Bless you all!