It’s impossible to put into words how my God moved me this past weekend. I can’t tell you — I wouldn’t even know where to start — all the ways God used people and events and his Holy Word and circumstances and songs and sermons and his Holy Spirit to break me, wake me, and shake me.
I wasn’t sure what I was expecting from Stream DFW. I’d never attended a Stream event. But I knew if the focus was on renewal and restoration through intentional worship and Jeff Walling was doing all the speaking I’d benefit greatly. It was actually much more than I had imagined. Through the use of congregational singing and dramatic readings and timely video dramas and silence and meditation and prayer, Ken Young and the Hallal Singers took all of us straight to God’s throne room, right into his presence. An hour of that and then another hour of Walling. Three times. A true focus on God’s surpassing love for us and our response to him through our own love for our Father and for one another and for the world.
Carrie-Anne and I wound up next to four dear friends from our Arlington days and right in front of seven wonderful friends from Legacy, and behind a couple of preacher friends from Waco. We sang together and laughed and cried and prayed and reflected together on our own motivations for doing what we do. Do we encourage our congregations out of a base of “obedience” or of “love?” Do I relate to my God and his people out of “obedience” or “love?”
God’s always been much more about “love” than “obedience.” Always. So why are we so hung up on “obedience?”
Stream was great. I highly recommend it.
Add to that our bi-lingual worship assembly Sunday morning (nearly a thousand gringos singing “In Moments Like These” in Spanish — and with gusto — and amen-ing Spanish prayers and Spanish Scripture readings); the commissioning and sending of our dear friends, the Calderons; witnessing our God save souls and rob hell with Annika’s baptism; participating as our church family prayed over and for the McCormicks and their brand new baby boy, home from Germany for a visit; a wonderful morning and afternoon visit with Jason & Tiersa Reeves and their awesome family; an all-church potluck and congregational dinner Sunday evening, sharing a common meal and the Lord’s Meal together around tables instead of in pews.
God did that thing he always does. He’s moving in mighty ways in this place. Give him praise! It’s so exhilerating to be in partnership with all this. The grumpy email and the grouchy member can’t touch me today!
Our Legacy assembly time Sunday was highlighted by our commissioning and charging and sending of Manuel and Yvina Calderon and their sweet girls, Sofia and Natalia, to Siempre Familia Iglesia de Cristo in South Fort Worth. Introducing Manuel to our church family and watching and listening to him share our Lord’s vision for the Hispanic Church was so inspiring.
Legacy is partnering with Continent of Great Cities and Missions Resource Network to begin this Hispanic church at the old Rosemont building in the Seminary Avenue area of Fort Worth. And we’re not only sending the Calderons to be a part of the leadership group there. We’re also sending our 30-35 Spanish-speaking brothers and sisters from Legacy to join that great work. Our plan is to take the gospel to the tens of thousands of Hispanics there and then plant subsequent churches in Dallas, Houston, and other metropolitan cities in Texas and the Southwest.
And if I know Manuel — and I do — he and our God are going to be an unstoppable force.
I can’t tell you how many times Manuel and I have poured our hearts out to each other about our God’s mission and our roles in partnering with him to fulfill that mission. How many times we’ve prayed together for each other and our families. He’s such an encouragement to me. I want to be more like him. I want just half his fire. I want just half his enthusiasm for our Lord and his people. Just half his dedication and commitment to God’s Church. I want just half his faith. Manuel’s something else.
I’m invested in Manuel. Big time. I’m invested in him spiritually. Emotionally. Financially. Physically. If you’ve ever been hugged by Manuel, you know what I mean by “physically.” When he hugs you, he crushes your vertebrae. You come away from a hug by Manuel a couple of inches shorter than before.
May our Father bless the Calderons and all those working to bring God’s salvation to South Fort Worth.
Only 12 days remain until the Cowboys begin their regular NFL season. And I’ve missed a bunch of days in our Red Ribbon Review. So, in an effort to catch up on recognizing the second-best players in Cowboys history according to jersey number, here they are:
Today’s #12 is punter Ron Widby. He wore #12 when he came into the league with Dallas as a free agent out of Tennessee in 1968. His best year with Dallas was in ’69 when he averaged 43.4 yards per kick. And then he had to give his number to Roger Staubach, some Heisman Trophy winner coming off a four-year stint in the Navy. No one else has worn the number since.
Yesterday’s #13 has only been worn by one Dallas Cowboy in the fifty year history of the franchise: quarterback Jerry Rhome. Mainly a backup from Tulsa. Longtime offensive assistant coach. At one time considered somewhat of a quarterback guru.
Sunday’s #14 belongs to Craig Morton, whose real first name is (I’m not kidding) Larry. Morton was the first quarterback in NFL history to start at quarterback in two Super Bowls for two different teams, Dallas in Super Bowl V and for the Broncos against Dallas in Super Bowl XII, both sloppy, sloppy losses. Morton was the Cowboys’ first round pick (5th overall) out of Cal in 1965. Staubach took over in ’70.
Finally, the second-best player to ever wear #15 for Dallas is wide receiver Tom Crowder. He was just a practice squad guy in 2004-05. No picture. I don’t think one exists.