"If you extend your hand to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness shall be as noonday. The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul .." Isaiah 58: 10 - 11
Good Day to you from Kansas City! I'm back at IHOP-KC finishing my last semester in IHOPU and engaging in life as an intercessory missionary. These days I'm spending about 10 hours a week down at the prayer room in the inner city called Hope City. There I pray primarily, serve the house by playing the drums, and help wherever needed.
Recently, I have been struck with the fast that God has chosen (Isaiah 58), which is to share our bread with the hungry and not hide ourselves from our neighbors.
It happened like this: It was day three of a three-day fast here and I went down to Hope City to drum and pray. Many know with any fast, by the end you are pretty "raw." Meaning, the prop of food is gone and nothing is there but raw, or the real, you. So there I was on a Wednesday night in the inner city rubbing shoulders with people from the community. I felt uncomfortable, tired, and bothered. The novelty was gone. Why am I doing this again? I left the comforts of my little community and sheltered life to come down here on a Wednesday night for what? Nothing like fasting to show you what's really in your heart. Little compassion and a struggle to love, but a heart that deep down wants to.
For this reason PRAYER is a must. I MUST touch the heart of God in the place of prayer so that my heart can be filled with love, that I would overflow in love for those around me. Living a life of service sounds well and good, but unless I have God's love pulsing through me I have nothing to give. I don't want to give them me, because I don't love well. I want to love them with the God-kind of love which knows no bounds (isn't easily bothered, is kind, etc). For this reason I must pray.
The First Commandment (loving God with all your heart, mind, and soul) naturally leads itself to the Second Commandment (loving your neighbor). I cannot love apart from God's help.
God would have that we would not close our hearts to the needs of those around us. He's saving me again and again in the place of laying my life down. Let's lay down our lives together, because really deep down no one wants to just live unto themselves. What a wasted life!
On another note: March 1-3 is the Stand Conference here at IHOP KC. It's a conference Contending for the destiny of the black community. To find out how you can be involved either here in Kansas City or through the webstream visit: http://www.ihop.org/stand/