I always journal after a trip around the question: “God, how did You come to me, and what did You say?” The following are the top four things I heard:
1. Gift. Every culture and country in the world reflects aspects of the beauty of God (see Revelation 21:24). Brazilians offer a joy, a warmth, an optimism, and a passion for life that is a wonder to behold. I heard God’s invitation afresh to marvel and worship Him for such creativity to place such amazing gifts in so many cultures around the world.
2. Global Church Shift. We experienced first-hand, once again, the shift of the church from Europe and North America to the global South (Africa, Latin America, Asia). The church in Brazil continues to grow rapidly. This explosion of the church, along with their openness to the gospel, is also a marvel. Is it any wonder that some evangelicals have set a goal to become 50% of the country by 2020?
3. Leadership. Brazil is crippled by corruption and bad leadership. The last President was impeached and the acting President has been accused of taking bribes. So have dozens of other senior politicians, including 8 government ministers, 24 senators and 39 members of Congress’s lower house. As a result, the 207 million people of Brazil are experiencing a serious economic recession. I felt God whisper to me again, “Everything rises and falls on leadership. Invest your life into forming leaders.” At the same time, God has gifted EHS in Brazil with very strong leadership. Giovaldo Freitas, the leader of MEES, is an outstanding leader with an outstanding team committed to bring EHS to Brazil. The picture below is Giovaldo (far right) with a group of EHS Trainers in Training he is developing to teach EHS seminars around the country.
4. God’s Ways. Our flight back to New York, at 9:15 p.m. on Monday night, was cancelled at the last minute. I was very tired from the previous six days and longed for sleep on the airplane. When we were told the next flight was not until 11:30 a.m. the following morning, I become very angry – with God, the airline, Geri, and anything/anybody else I could think of! Within the hour, however, Delta Airlines transported us to a very nice hotel with very good food only about 10 minutes away. We had a great night’s sleep – far better than I could have experienced on the airplane. We awoke refreshed and had a wonderful return trip. God’s lesson was clear: “My ways are not your ways.” Oh, I am so eternally thankful for God’s mercy and forgiveness!
We shared quite a bit from The Emotionally Healthy (EH) Relationships Course in our 3-day seminar with pastors and leaders. We observed, first-hand, the power of these skills to transform lives and churches. Towards that end, let me invite you to our first Point Leader Training on “How to Lead The EH Relationship Course” next Thursday, June 29. Click here, or below, for more information.