Sunday, August 3, 2003

August 3, 2003

9:58 PM End of a very good first day at Gull Lake. Tonight I started my forgiveness series and the people were very attentive. Greg Sanford is here this week representing New Tribes Mission. He spoke with great passion tonight about the need to “finish the unfinished work” of reaching the world for Christ. After the service I ate supper with Ray Warren, the director, and his wife, Janette. They do a great job leading this ministry. Janette’s parents are volunteering this summer, and it turns out that her father was the pastor of the First Covenant Church in Los Angeles when I was the pastor of Redeemer Covenant Church in the Los Angeles suburb of Downey in the late 70s. And Janette’s parents were some of the founding members of the Downey church. Then I met a Moody faculty member who knows Mark, and then someone came up who said they attended Calvary over 40 years ago. He was the choir director in the early days of Pastor Bob Gray. Neat to make all these unexpected connections.

4:21 PM A wonderful service this AM in the historic tabernacle. For many years, the tabernacle was an open-air setting, but a few years ago it was completely renovated, enclosed, and air-conditioned, making it a bright and airy space. The shape is octagonal, like the old Chautauqua auditoriums that were popular 100 years ago. Quite a few people attended the service, include Jack Lousma, an astronaut who was the pilot for Skylab 3 and flew the space shuttle Columbia during one of its orbital test flights in 1982. He also completed two space walks during his Skylab mission. He gave a stirring testimony of his faith in Christ–very powerful and very clear–and talked about Proverbs 3:5-6 and what it means to truly trust the Lord. He was there because a member of his family was being baptized in Gull Lake after the service. I had a chance to chat with him briefly. I mention it because I’ve always wanted to meet an astronaut, and never had until today.

After the service I ate lunch with Tom and Carol Klobucher who own a home near the conference center. Tom has served on the board of Gull Lake for many years. He confirmed what I had noticed–that there are many more young families and many more children than the last time I was here. That’s a very good sign. Tom grilled chicken and Carol prepared a wonderful meal–and we spent half the afternoon talking and sharing and laughing together. Next up: The evening service at 6 PM. I’m doing the Prayers of Paul series in the AM and the forgiveness series in the PM. Already there is a strong sense of God’s Spirit at work in many hearts.

9:40 AM A beautiful, slightly overcast morning at Gull Lake. Up early and took a bike ride around the lake. This is a resort area, lots of homes built right next to the lake and you see fishing boats, ski boats and pontoon boats. Not much traffic on the roads, the trip around the lake was 14.8 miles. I preach for the first time at 10:30 AM.

Here’s the Legacy Campaign prayer request: “Praise God that He will continue to be with us wherever we go (Joshua 1:9).”

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