For months, I’ve sensed the Holy Spirit leading me to pray in a very a specific way over Falls Creek youth camp (my husband Todd is the Program Director). This year’s theme is GLORY, and I felt warned that we shouldn’t expect God to glorify Himself in any specific way just because it was our first time back on grounds after the virus or because we chose this theme (way back in 2019).
I took that to mean that we shouldn’t expect high decision numbers, even though we might want and pray for them, or exceptionally moving worship sets, even though that typically happens when thousands of people join their voices in song to God, and I was okay with that.
However, I secretly hoped He would still choose to glorify Himself by making every little thing run smoothly, bringing staff out in droves, giving new staff members the kind of intuitive know-how that typically comes with years of experience, and by protecting people on grounds from off-campus distractions while they are here.
To be honest, there have been some hiccups. The year off has taken its toll in countless little ways that people who don’t live this life probably wouldn’t notice and those who do live this life may have anticipated, but couldn’t fully appreciate until they had to work through and in spite of them. I can’t speak for anyone else, but my camp legs are still pretty shaky, and I’d be willing to bet I’m not the only one.
I have the sneaking suspicion that’s just how God wants it.
One of our staff members recently told me through tears, “I can’t fix everything for everyone.”
I think I patted her back and said something flimsy like, “It’s okay.”
It wasn’t until I was falling asleep that night that the Lord gave me the right words to say—truthfully, He probably gave me the words in the moment, but I was too busy identifying with the tears being shed to perceive them. I believe I heard Him say, “If you could fix everything for everyone, they wouldn’t come to Me.”
Whether we like it or not, God sometimes chooses to glorify Himself by reminding us of our own limitations so we’ll be forced to recognize His sovereignty and rely on His sufficiency.
Sure, God may choose to glorify Himself at camp this year by doing the things we want him to do most, but if He doesn’t, that’s totally okay. He has promised that He will be glorified (Ephesians 1:11), and that should be enough for us.
Truth? God’s glory is too big for a stage built by human hands anyway. It’s too beautiful to capture with a cell phone camera. It’s too complete to quantify with statistics, and it’s too complex to express with words or convey with human emotion. God’s glory can’t be tucked away in an album marked “FC 2021” or whatever moment or season we choose to acknowledge it.
God’s glory hits harder.
God’s glory goes deeper.
More breath-taking than one hundred Oklahoma sunsets ablaze at one time, God’s glory changes forever the look and feel of everything for people willing to let go, look up, and engage.