Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Earthquakes, Halloween, Ghosts and Jesus...

I feel much better at this moment. A couple of weeks have passed since that chaotic week when I lost my job, when ministry seemed to go downhill, and my anxiety and emotions were getting the best of me.

Many opportunities for ministry have come my way now that I don't work at nights. I'm not ready to say that I lost my job just so I can concentrate on my ministry, but I know that God can bring out good from many unfortunate events in our lives.

This past Thursday's bible study was great. I took my team-mate's idea and, since Halloween is just around the corner, we talked about demons and ghosts.

The guys loved it, and everyone seemed anxious to share their ghosts stories. Hearing the almost fabled nature of these stories made me wonder how much of it was true and how much of it was glorified for mere shock value.

We had two earthquakes in San Francisco that day, and the second one added a literal shock value to our stories. While we were in the middle of sharing our stories the earth started to shake. The room's lights went off for less than a second, and everyone was in a state of utter shock.

Thankfully, the lights came on again. Everyone was silent. My mind was wildly amused by the apparent coincidence, thinking to myself, “what the heck is going on here?”. It was as if God decided to add His little touch to the stories.

Of course, talking about darkness seems meaningless, unless you include the contrasting light of Jesus. Later we talked about how we can fight darkness with God.

I learned many things in the past two weeks, and on that Thursday night I had to relearn something that I had apparently forgotten: the message of the Gospel is unnervingly simple, and its strength lies in its magnificent simplicity.

No need to complicate matters with heavy and pretentious theological terms. No need to delve into deep philosophical complications. And while these theological and philosophical endeavors have their purpose and place in God's plan for us, they fall short in revealing God's glory.

I learned the lesson St. John Bosco learned in his ministry with the youth, that the Gospel message should be presented so simply that even a little kid could understand it. Oddly enough, a simple presentation of God's message often leads to deep discussions, and more importantly, deep transformations in our lives.

Photo Credit: Sarah Ackerman.

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