Sunday, November 22, 2015

An Apology and an Entreaty

There are times, in life, when you just don't know, when someone tells you something, but you're just not quite able to grasp the reality.

This weekend was one of those time...or the realization, at least. And man, do I owe you ALL an apology. 

Mea Culpa. Mea Maxima Culpa.

Earlier this year, when Josiah and I met with Keith Tully of FamilyLife about the church's marriage ministry, he was insistent that we should bring a group to the Weekend to Remember in Williamsburg this year (which just took place). 

We told him we'd love to take a group, but it just wasn't in our budget right now. That's why we do The Art of Marriage! It's way cheaper to put on at our local church. And The Art of Marriage is JUST like Weekend to Remember anyway, right? That's what I thought, anyway.

Keith persisted in his wish that we experience the event, and even offered to sponsor us. HUGE gift. Of course! we said. Why wouldn't we go if it was sponsored?

We started a group (CompassMarriage) and started advertising for the event. We posted on facebook about it many times and talked to some people in church. We invited...enough to say we invited.

Even when Keith sent us a message and challenged us to share just as dynamically about the Weekend to Remember as we do about our other business venture.

And I tried...I really did.

Here's the deal though: I can REALLY only share passionately about something like that if it's had a serious impact on me. There's a REASON I didn't really sell anything before product had ever changed my life like it has

Well, that's no longer the case. I can now share PASSIONATELY about the Weekend to Remember because Josiah and I walked out of there transformed.

Generally, Josiah and I attend these events knowing we'll get tidbits and knowing we'll come out a little closer, but generally, our marriage is pretty good, so we don't expect anything mind-blowing.

Oh, how we belittle the power of our MIGHTY GOD.

Maybe it was the powerful anointing given to the speakers. Maybe it was the prayer that came from scores of people before and during the event. Maybe it was the relevance of the material. Maybe it was all those things.

All I know, is we are changed. Our marriage was already great...and now it's better.

But more than that, I can feel a peace deep within both of us and in our home. 

I think the largest change is in Josiah. I hope he doesn't mind me saying that.

He came out standing taller, ready to lead our family and our ministry. He came out equipped. And I am grateful.

He's already typed out pages upon pages of notes, revelations from the Holy Spirit throughout the weekend. Look for blogs from him coming soon.

So, my dear friends, I owe you an apology. I am so grieved that I didn't share MORE with you; that, like I have with my other business, I didn't message so many of you to invite you personally. I'm so sorry I didn't put exponentially more time and effort into sharing this experience with you so you could walk out changed with us.

By the grace of God, it isn't too late. 

There are at least two more in Virginia coming up. The first is in Virginia Beach on Valentine's Day weekend. What a great gift?! There's also one in Reston, VA in April.

You definitely want to GET AWAY for the event, so why not take a look at the FamilyLife calendar and see if there are any other locations and dates you'd love? (and be sure to use the group code "CompassMarrage" to get a discount!)

Let me illustrate how intensely powerful this event was for us: Josiah and I are considering forgoing the Le-Vel Lifestyle Getaway to Las Vegas (which we should qualify for), and instead, helping the local volunteer team in Virginia Beach that weekend. 

We haven't completely made up our minds, and a paid vacation together would be awfully nice, but we also feel so incredibly compelled to share the experience we had with others. 

It's a tough one.

I urge you. I am pleading

Do not let this valuable opportunity to enrich your life, your marriage, and your walk with God pass you by.

Could I be any clearer? 

Josiah and I are so grateful: to Keith Tully, the voluneteer/prayer teams, the presenters, FamilyLife, and most of all, God.

If you have any questions about this, please contact me. I don't often say things like that on my blog, but I would love to help you with this.

So now, dear reader, I end with a prayer for YOU:
Heavenly Father, 
There is no way for me to know who You will have read this, but I pray, if they are married (happily or ready to leave), engaged, or even thinking about marriage, that they will pursue this opportunity. I pray they will boldly take this step to fight against the powers that wish desperately to tear their relationships apart. I pray they will RISE UP and become people who FIGHT for their marriages and the marriages in their communities and all over the world. 
I pray these things with confidence, knowing You will answer my plea. 
I praise You God, for all that You have done, all that You will do, and all that You are. 
In Jesus' holy name I pray. 

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