The Desert

James 1:2-4

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

In two months we touch ground in Boulder, CO.  Up until four weeks ago, it’s been all talk. Now is the moment of truth for the Reverence Movement team. It is quite possibly one of the toughest times any of us have ever faced.  We’re walking into the unknown. We’re in the desert, desperate to hear from God and see a miracle. We knew this was coming, yet there’s not much we can do to prepare ourselves except persevere.

Every time a movement begins in the Bible, the leaders face a desert experience first.  Before the Israelites took the land promised them, they spent time in the desert.  Before Jesus began His epic ministry, He spent forty days where? In the desert.

For Jesus’ disciples, the cross was their final test, their desert. For three years Jesus had been telling them what they must do in order to be a part of God’s promised kingdom. However, they never understood Jesus until they faced their own mortality while watching Him be strung up on a tree to die.  It was the moment of truth for the disciples. Will they, or will they not, be the church? Can they die to the world and pick up their own cross?  Or will they revert back to their earthly comforts. Obviously Judas made his decision. Peter, Thomas and the others wrestled with their faith, but all of them were about to leave a legacy. 

The Reverence team is in the desert now.  Six months ago we were all living comfortably. But now, many of us are personally broke, having put every bit of our savings into the movement’s needs up until this point. We’re selling our houses for a loss. Then last week we found out one of our own, my healthy an active dad, Bob DeMain, has non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, cancer of the lymph nodes. He begins Chemotherapy this week. Another member of our team Pam Mathis, just underwent surgery to remove a tumor.  Oh yeah…and as I write this, I’m sitting on the side of the freeway with, what appears to be, a blown engine in our recently purchased, used 2000 Subaru Outback waiting for a tow truck to come get me. I have no idea how I'm going to fix it, but I'm totally cool because I understand this process. The desert sucks, but it’s necessary in order for a movement of God to begin.

The desert is where Jesus resisted temptation and His spirit gained the strength needed for the journey He was about to begin. The cross was meant to kill the Jesus movement and disperse the disciples, but it only provided the fuel needed for the church to begin. Now Christ followers all over the world wear Jesus' greatest trial, the cross, as a crown.

As hard as it is, we have to learn how to ‘consider it pure joy’ when we are tested for the sake of Jesus. He’s about to blow our mind, but perseverance needs to finish it’s work in us first.

Hear me on this; God is going to come through for us and His glory will be seen by all who bear witness.  We’re done with going to church, we are the church. The Movement will go on as scheduled. We are leaving for Boulder in June no matter what. In fact, we’re just more determined to bring the freakin gospel of the Real Jesus than ever before. Get ready Boulder, here comes The Reverence Movement.

Legacy awaits,

dan rutty

Ps. We need the prayers and support of our friends and family more than ever.

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