Hey Friends, Family and all of you randoms out there.
I’m sitting here, drinking my coffee this morning, bible open into the Psalms and decided to actually make a little post for my blog to tell you about what is going on in my world. For some of you we chatted last week, for others it’s been way too long.
This past year has been one for the books. A year ago I quit my day job working for Disney to pursue full time music and ministry opportunities. I felt that God wanted to take me on a journey and I decided to simply say “Yes” to the various opportunities that came my way.
Because of this I, I was able to travel, visit friends, visit various churches, go to Haiti, lead worship in amazing rooms filled with even greater people and head back to the farm for a season to get back to my roots. It’s been a crazy ride, in the beginning I thought I was going to land in a career position in a church and after a year of searching for that dream job I did come up empty handed. Hindsight being what it is, I did see God do something amazing in my life. Revealing things of His heart to me, guiding me and working in me. This past year, I also finally came to the awareness and acceptance that I am battling with depression and anxiety. God’s working in that and has brought some amazing people in my life to speak into this which I am forever grateful.
2 summers ago, I took a leap of faith and took 3 weeks off to go down to Redding California to Bethel Church for a intensive Worship school program. Not know really anything about the church at the time, outside of a few friends who have been down there, I was simply informed that they do things a bit different. Let me put it this way, I was the only Mennonite Kid in a room full of Charasmaniacs. But God once again, like he always does, showed up. My prayer going in was “I’m open, I’m willing, crush and re-enforce”. And He didn’t disappoint. Since then, Bethel has been on my heart to go back.
This past spring I was looking at what my summer/fall was going to look like and where I was going to invest, whether I move from Kelowna or stay, take a job back on the family farm or find some job elsewhere outside of music. And once again, Bethel landed on my heart. It was something I couldn’t shake.
After talking with some key people in my life that I have given authority to speak into these types of decisions I applied in the middle of July to attend their 1st year School of Supernatural Ministry. Within a week I was accepted, and since then I have my condo rented out for the year and I’m moving to the US of A in 2 weeks.
I know. Crazy right?!
So here I am now. Trying to find a bed somewhere down there, figuring out how to get over the boarder without too much hassle, cleaning my condo from top to bottom and packing up my truck.
The crazy thing is, even though I’m super excited. It is a complete God thing that I am going. I needed everything to fall into place smoothly and so far (knock on wood) it has seamlessly.
Some of you right now are probably asking yourself. Why? Saying, “Marshall, your 28, you got your BA in Music, time to get a grown up job bud.”
Trust me, I’m asked myself this. I’m not 19 anymore. I know that.
You see, for 26 years of my life, my primary education of who God is was merely academic head knowledge. I knew God. I’ve studied God. I’ve written papers about God and I’ve even told people about my theories of God. Yes, I had experiences where God became so personal and transformed in very specific and tangible ways. Yet, the religiosity of who I was, was my primary faith.
It wasn’t until I went down to Bethel and prayed my prayer “I’m open, I’m willing God” that I believe my life got flip up on its head.
You see, Bethel teaches the application of the Gospel. The tangibles. Miracles are an every day occurrence. And its not because God loves them more, its not because they figured out the formula or that they are ever faking it for the warm fuzzy feelings it brings. Bethel is simply, Open and Willing. They seek out the Holy Spirit, there is a hunger and a thirst to know God who is greater than the miracles. They seek out the identity of Christ and pursue the answer to the question “Who does God say I am”. Once that question is answered, the heavens open up and purpose of life is no longer an issue.
For myself, I find that I am in the prime of my life to do this. I’m single. I’m not tied down to a career yet and I have one amazingly thick academic side of “who God is”. Its time to pair that with the application of who God is and allow the 2 to meet each other.
My heart and calling is still firmly set on ministry in music and what better opportunity then to hangout and hopefully get involved with the amazing people down there like Brian and Jenn Johnson, Jesus Culture, Jeremy Riddle and everyone else. And when I get back next spring to once again, stare at the various opportunities before me with a clearer vision and passion to see the Glory of God come.
So, that’s the plan. Here’s what I need from you.
Pray. Pray for me. Pray for the Church. Pray for School. To be covered by the prayers of the saints as thousands of us get fired up, trained and released.
Encouragement. I need lots. Good words from greater friends.
Finances. If you are so inclined to feel the desire to give. There will be an opportunity after Christmas to give towards a missions trip in the spring. Tax receipts and all that good stuff. Being a Canadian I can’t work down there so I am going to do what I can to make ends meet. If in someway a ministry has blessed us I do believe we are called to sew back into that ministry to bless others. So for myself, I’m always humbled and honored when someone gives towards what I am doing. I will do everything in my power to make you proud.
Please keep in touch while I am down there and I will do my best to continue to share what God is doing in me, through me and around me as best as I can here.
Love you all.