The other night I attended Xairo: The Full Release held at Leeward Community Church. It was a good energizing time of full-out worship and other performances in the Christ-Community.
I drove into the parking lot and was guided by a police officer and church volunteers. Parking was on the lawn. They had it pretty well organized, having marked off lanes with cones and such.
Inside, to open, Third String Redemption warmed up the crowd with some worship. Then an area up front was cleared for the performance by the All Nations dance crew. More worship with David Tamaoka & Band.
One of the songs, “One Way,” was a song that I’ve sung many times but something caught my thoughts this night. In the lyrics are the words, “We live by faith and not by sight for you.” Previously, I’ve connected these words with how Christians believe even in these days when we haven’t seen the physical Christ or even when we can’t point out and say, “Look, there is God!” This night, I also connected the words with how Christians have to live, being distracted by what other people say and do, being discouraged by this reality and with what we see in the world, feeling hopeless because of what we see in ourselves. As a Christian, one does live by faith, faith that God is here, that he is in control, that he loves us, that he redeemed us.
Which brings me also to a song I heard for the first time, “How He Loves” written by John Mark Mcmillan. David Tamaoka told us how he connected this song with the words of John 15:9 which says, “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.” It was a good reminder that God loves his son so much, and that the son, Jesus, loves us with the same passion and intensity.
Next, the youth pastors of two of the hosting churches came up to talk about “The Full Release.” The main idea was that we may say we love Jesus 100%, but most of the time we don’t live 100%. We may be singing for Him 100%, then go home and be 20% with our family, 30% with our friends, 10% at our workplace or school, etc. How would it be to live 100%?! Imagine that!
Personally, I think that’s where I’m headed, allowing Christ in me invade all areas of my life so that no matter who I meet or what I face, people might recognize that there’s that something different about me. They might get curious enough to ask and I’ll get the honor of telling them, it’s all Christ’s doing. I couldn’t be a tenth of a good/ loving/ faithful/ ___ person on my own. Hopefully they’ll get curious enough to meet Jesus themselves.
The testimony of David Fong was next. I thought it was good and genuine. And I hope that it touched someone to become curious enough to find out for themselves. That’s another thing too, that we don’t really know what our lives are saying/ have said to someone else about faith.
Third String Redemption closed with more good worship. I mean, the place was rockin’! TSR pumped up the crowd, the crowd pumped up TSR- it was wonderful!
Afterwards, I hung around and got caught up with a few people I hadn’t seen in a while. I saw a pastor and wife that had been considered for our own church; they’re now at Leeward and say things are going well. It’s not like me to go and talk to people like that, people who don’t really know me and I don’t really know them, but they were pleasant and thanked me for saying hi.
Then I was listening to two friends talk about their ministry goings-ons. One of them asked me if I was the only one from my church there that night. My thoughts: Haha, pretty much! But I guess that’s just how I am. I see value in “crossing church lines,” in seeing what else is going on, (in general) in meeting people who are different, etc., and am willing to seek it out on my own if I have to.
That night was just, I wanted to see some people in the worship team that I hadn’t seen in a while and refresh those connections a little; I wanted to have a release in this joy that I’ve been experiencing and do so with all-out worship with others; I wanted to see what was possible. I think it came at a good time. I’m energized to keep on with what I need to do no matter the cost and imagine something possible! I’m not thinking of having a group to put on a worship/ message night ourselves, it’s a possibility, if we have such gifts and talents and such, but my friends also mentioned other outreach things going on, so I’m just thinking about what’s possible if I/we would try and thinking about how to get there, how to do it.
Oh, I forgot about the video they showed! It was the story of Rick and Dick Hoyt. Rick is a “spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy.” He cannot walk or speak of his own accord, but can communicate assisted by an interactive computer. He wanted to participate in a 5-mile benefit run. His father, Dick, helped make that happen. This is what I love about their story: Dick didn’t just run the race for his son or dedicate the finish to his son; he took his son along! Find more of their story here .
In a way, it’s kinda the role I’d like to provide for others, spiritually speaking. I know what it’s like to not recognize that there’s something more, to feel absolute hopelessness while wanting there to be more; I’d like to help guide others past such times to be open to the possibilities when we start getting behind Jesus, and hopefully they’ll start being able to see the possibilities on their own. It’s not an exact analogy, but close.
The Hoyt story is, however, a pretty good analogy for what God does for us; we get in the carrier and God runs the race with us- we run the race on his power, and we have to want it, to want to run the race.
Ahh, so much to take in! And now, to see about doing something…!