Friday, January 21, 2011

A healing on the streets

Just wanted to share this. A comment from a lady who participated in Night Strike last Friday night. Always love reading these stories.

I've served at Nighstrike over the last year with my church, Mt. View Community. I am always blessed when I serve and always walk away having received more than I gave. I've done a little of everything, cutting hair, dignity station, washing feet, praying. But last night was different.

I went to Bridgetown last night thinking I would serve food. I've not served food before and I like the social aspect of it. I also thought that since I'd had a really busy day at work and had not had much in the way of lunch and no dinner, I figured I could at least snag a cookie. But as always, I leave it up to the Lord to show me where he wanted me to be. So, as they were asking for volunteers to do a Walk About, the Lord tugged at my heart and I found myself raising my hand. I confess, this was not something I really wanted to do, a cold breezy night, my bad knee aching. But, if I've learned nothing in my 40 years as a servant of God, I've learned that when He leads, I'd best follow. So off I went.

As we prayed over several places (all the usual suspects) the Lord began a healing in me that I have been praying for over the last year. My personal challenge was nothing dramatic, but something the Lord had called me to work on a year ago. And it has been a bigger struggle than I had anticipated and in the giving up of something, I've spent a lot of time at the Lord's feet and yes, a lot of tears. I've been able to give up logically, but emotionally it has been a struggle. My own "addiction" I guess, but not drugs or alcohol or anything like that. But, never-the-less, something that was separating me from God. At each station, we prayed for whatever we were lead to pray for, but I began to feel the Lord working in my own heart. At first I wasn't quite sure what was going on, but then it became obvious to me that God was working on me as well as the City. At the last station, I was standing next to a young man from Sunnyside Foursquare, who I'd never met until last night. As we were praying, he laid his hand gently on my shoulder and began to quietly pray for me. So quietly that I couldn't really hear his words. But his words didn't matter. I knew I was receiving a gift of healing from God standing among the lost on a corner of Burnside and the Lord chose that time, place and person to complete His healing in me.

Here I was, having gone to minister to others in God's name and in the course of my service and servant's heart, He also healed me! What a wonderful Lord we serve!

I just wanted you to know that more than one healing took place last night. A healing for someone who is usually serving under the bridge, not needing to be healed under the bridge.

Chasing the Goose......

Saturday, December 4, 2010

No worries I am still alive.

Yup, I am still alive. Still thinking, still reading. Just ready to pass out for a long winters nap. At this time of the year I am just trying to stay alive actually. I am tried and feeling a little burnt out actually. How is that for honesty for you? Well leaders get there I am sure. Some are honest about it and others, well....they just are not.
So that is why we shut things down for a while at BTown. We just take messages, do not return emails and just stay in the pajamas and read and focus our attention on resting and refreshment. I believe that this is good. That it is a vital part of each leaders life. To be rested, to be alert and available. You cannot do this if your always going, going, going. So what will I do while on by break?

1) Read - I have a few books that I am going to read. Some from C.S. Lewis and a couple of Fiction as well, not sure what those are yet. I love to read. Recently I was floored by a tweet from Rick Warren from Saddleback. He said that he was reading a book a day. I could not believe that, I mean, I m thinking how in the world does one read a book a day? So I googled it. There were some general strategies but the one the grabbed me was the read a book in a week. That sounds more my speed actually. That could be pretty cool if you think about it. Reading 52 books a year. This is a lot of reading. Can you imagine how much you could learn, how many new ideas could come to you? So I am putting my reading list together for the 2011 year. Hoping to grow and learn a lot.

2) Rest - just plain close my eyes whenever I want to.

3) Play - Hoping to get some time with the family and travel a bit to eastern Washington to see friends and family.

4) Think - Think about stuff, think about life.

Well there is a bit of an update for those that care. If not - well I just worked out a little of my stuff in my head.

Looking forward to tomorrow as we head down to see a friend of mine speak in Lebanon, Oregon.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Got kicked out of a band because I was a liberal......

The other day I received a message on my Facebook account from a friend.

Hey Marshall, I got fired from my new Christian band for being a liberal! They let me go last week. The whole experience was pretty unbelievable, I'll tell you about it when I see you. Darn Obama sticker on my car.

What is wrong with us? A bumper sticker has separated people from doing something for God together. I am always amazed at what we let separate us. I remember talking to a older man one time and he had a friend from an opposite political party and their friendship ended over it. I always found that to be a pretty shallow thing. I am sure that there are "critical" issues but are we trying to say "this is how Jesus would vote if He were to vote."

I know that this friend of mine loves Jesus with all his heart. I know that he serves in his local church. I know if people actually sat down and talked with him they would find that he loves people. Besides he is a good guitar player as well. All of this blows me away.

When your world view is your political party you have a problem. We need to remember that political systems are created by man not God, which means that people could be wrong. Their view could be wrong, and of course it could be right. Should't we approach it that way? Shouldn't we be able to have a conversation rather than just making a "judgement" on someone because of a "bumper sticker?" Wow!! I wanna give these people the benefit of the doubt and hopefully there were other reasons they wanted him to leave the band.

I know - a rant, a rave...oh well. I told him that it was a band that he didn't want to be a part of anyway.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

A great week.

Such a great week this last week. Makes me so thankful for what my family and I get to be a part of at BridgeTown Ministries. I saw so many lives impacted this last week.
Two teams came into Portland to help us with our mission to "Love people because people matter", Colorado Christian University and Bethel Church from Tri Cities area in Washington. Each group posessed a strong passion to be used, to be challenged and to see God do things in their
lives. I watched them spend themselves in loving people. I so injoy witnessing sights like this

Watching high school students reaching out to the least of these. Letting God speak thru them. It never gets old. It always challenges me, always moves me to want more, to be more. To empty myself and be fully aware, available and present in every moment that I am blessed with.
Each time we finish one of our Adventures I am extremely tired, but it is a different tired, a tired in body but a freshness in spirit If you know what I mean.
I wonder about are participants, will they take the challenge to be world changers, will they decide to say yes to making a difference or will they just assume the posistion that so many assume, a consumer just accepting their faith as a "sin management program" or just a "fire insurance policy".
My hope is that they will take up the keys that have been intrusted to them by our Lord and run to the broken and hurting of this world with a message of love and redemption.
Each one of us bring something, we have something to give. We are created by a master designer a master builder one that can weave spirit and flesh together and then with the inspiration of the Holy Sprit, cause us to extend our heads, hearts and hands to others and let them know they matter, that God is aware of them, He knows their name, He knows that they are hungry and cold and weary and lost. Then through the eagerness of a young person He extends His hand to humanity and says, "I know you."

"God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We're Christ's representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God's work of making things right between them. We're speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he's already a friend with you." 2 Corinthians 5

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A great night

This never gets old. Watching the church be the church. Conversations of hope and encouragement. Letting people know that they matter. That someone cares, that God cares. God is working in Portland in a special and unique way.
We are celebrating that we have been under the bridge "loving on people because people matter" for 6 years. It always blows me away to be used this way to watch year after year people come together to learn, laugh and love about, with and on others.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, March 5, 2010


And I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven...Matt. 16:19

So what does toilet paper, diapers and a pair of tube socks all have in common? They are really keys to the kingdom of heaven. They are answers to some of the greatest questions like, "does God know I exist?" and "does God know my need?" "does He hear my prayer?" This simple items become a key to the heart of people. The answer th
ese questions again and again and again.

Something as simple as a roll of toilet paper that is given to a working poor family makes a difference. This simple item becomes a key that unlocks a persons heart to listen to the words of God.
A diaper can be the answer to a mother's prayer for provision in a great time of need. Again another key on they key chain that opens another part of the heart.
The heart is where the kingdom of God resides in us.
It is the heart that God changes. He speaks to the heart, he does a work in the heart. It is the heart that God is after. Our need is a matter of the heart. And when that need is met it does something to the heart.

What kind of keys has God given you? For me it all started with a pair of white
socks and some hot soapy water and a question "do you have any prayer requests?" A key?

A reflection and Prayer for today.

I just finished listening to the Daily Audio Bible. I am not sure what you do for your reading times. I know there are many options and all are good for sure. DAB has been good for me as I endeavor to daily intake the Word of God into my life. The DAB is a daily audio reading of the bible. The reader, reads a selection from the Old Testament then the New Testament. He then reads a Psalm and a reading from the Proverbs. It is an app on my iphone and I also have it in a podcast stream app as well. So many times I grab my iphone and just plug into it and listen. As much as I can I try and follow along in the translation the reader is reading out of. He trades off each week into a different translation of the scripture. He then makes some comments on what we read together. I listen to those at times but other times turn it off and think on what was read. You can find it at Give it a try and see what you think.

Today's New Testament reading was from Matthew 6. I love these 3 chapters of the NT. The Sermon on the Mount is always fresh to me each time I read it. I find a lot of comfort in the teachings of Christ. I can imagine sitting and listening as He shared this to the people around them. What a change from the norm for these people. A new way of looking at things. Not a bunch of rules and regulations, or steps to being "right" with God. Here is God himself speaking to the people about life. I love it!!

Matthew 6:31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.

I have read this portion of scripture many times. I have quoted it as I have spoke and really try to live by it but if you are like me it is a great reminder of the daily grind of life and the reality of our society for more and more stuff. Stuff can mean a lot of different things. It can mean material things such as clothing or different products. It can also be things that clutter up our minds such as ideas or things which need to get done. It can be calendar dates and meetings and these things can "dominate our thoughts" which can distract us from hearing the voice of God.

I find myself having to think through this portion of scripture this morning, asking God to show me the areas of my life I worry about. It is easy to take control. It is easy to try and make it happen to solve it. What a trap if we are not careful.

The end of this is such a great way to start out this day. To be about today. To live today. To enjoy today and all it brings. Being present in this day is my focus is my plan.

- Father, thank you for your word. Thank you we are not left to try and figure out what to do. Thank you for providing for our today and that today has its own things to do and be and focus on. Help me to grasp your love for me today as I go about my day. Lift my eyes and heart so I can recognize your working throughout my day.
I confess I am a worrier Father. I worry about life, the future. I worry about tomorrow and I see the need for your word to resonate in my life to echo into the cavern which holds these worries. I submit my life to you on this day.
I lift my family to you today that you would touch each of them, that your hand would reach to them and protect them. Help them to see your face today in their days as well. Encamp your angles around them and give them peace today.
Be with Lesley as she does her visitations. Provide divine appointments with "people of peace" today. May she encounter your Spirits work as she "Loves on people because they matter."
Thank you for your peace that surpasses understanding Father. Bring peace to the day. AMEN