I just got back from doing a couple concerts in Montana with my ministry-partner-in-crime Tim.  It was a great time of fellowship with those of us who were out there, an incredible opportunity to see some sights (Yellowstone/Old Faithful!)... but most of all, it was a chance to minister in the name of Jesus in a place with a lot of spiritual warfare going on.

There were several times throughout the course of the trip that it was evident that the enemy didn't want us there.  Everything from scheduling to non-working gear to completely MISSING gear to dying car batteries fell on our shoulders.  During the first concert, I vividly remember when Tim got to the point in the night when he shared Jesus' story, and at that very moment his microphone starting feeding back and freaking out.  Right at that moment.  It was obvious that there was something trying to keep the light of Jesus from penetrating that place.  But, in His power, it penetrated.  Lives were touched... likely more than we were able to see.

But that's the point of it all -- we had non-functioning gear, we weren't able to hear ourselves play, and it felt as though every moment of the night involved some type of struggle.  Yet in the midst of our difficulties, GOD SHINED THROUGH.  It wasn't in our power to bring His light and truth - it was in HIS power.  

It's not that we were powerless in that very moment to change lives... it's that we are powerless in EVERY moment to change lives.  Apart from Christ, we can't do anything.  But IN Christ... well... watch out.  He'll have His way, for sure!

I've been reading "Radical" by David Platt (excellent read, by the way), and he mentions the beginning of the book of Acts when the disciples were gathered together & praying just after Jesus had ascended into heaven.  They weren't ironing out a big plan or trying to program & practice their approach to ministry -- they were PRAYING.  They didn't have any strength in them on their own, and they knew it.  They needed the power of something greater than themselves to lead, guide, work, and MOVE in the lives of the people that they were about to surround themselves with. In short, they were powerless... but in realizing that powerlessness, they BANKED on the Holy Spirit to move.  

I don't want to convince myself that these songs (or any other angle of ministry God provides me & my family with) will reach a million or billion people if I write the right melody or sing the perfect lyric.  In all reality, the perfect lyric is JESUS.  He'll raise the songs from songwriters that He wants to use to touch lives & move people closer to Himself.... HE'LL choose.  Not me.  Not the one who's composing... but the One whom I'm composing about.

To close, here's a lyric from one of my favorite U2 songs:

"I was born  -  I was born to sing for You
I didn't have a choice but to lift You up
And sing whatever song You wanted me to"
- U2, "Magnificent", No Line On The Horizon

May we all understand that God is not only our only reason for living, but also the only source of power to accomplish HIS WILL for His story.  

Let's let our lives sing for Him... whatever song that may be.  
His power, not ours.  
Less of us, more of Him.

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