A few days ago, my wife Becky and I returned from a three week trip, full of amazing surprises, from Macedonia, Greece and Turkey. We were invited by two Asian physicians, Keat Wong and Andrew Kam and their wives, Lillian and Eveleen, to go with them to these countries. I met Keat and Andrew, when I was speaking in Perth last year at the church they attend.
The first two weeks of the trip were devoted to Macedonia and then, by surprise, Greece also came into the picture. Macedonia is an ancient region, with a glorious past. People like Alexander the Great and Mother Teresa came from this region. Macedonia became a new country in 1991, after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Macedonia is just above Greece. It was part of the southern Yugoslavia.
Why did we go to Macedonia? A prominent Macedonian businessman and one of Dr. Keat’s patients, invited Keat to bring a small team of people to come to Macedonia. Keat then invited Andrew and me and our wives to come. This reminds me of the story in Acts 16:9: “And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a certain man of Macedonia was standing and appealing to him, and saying, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us.’” Keat received a literal modern day Macedonian call and we went with him.
When Keat talked to me about going to Macedonia, I knew that something ‘God-sized’ was up. It resonated inside of me loud and clear. God was up to something and we had to be part of it. That is what I have done for many years. I wait for Holy Spirit inspired opportunities and possibilities. I’ve learned that when opportunity knocks, you had better be on the dance floor. Timing, availability and location is everything in God’s kingdom.
So off we went to Macedonia. I have been to over one hundred countries but I had never been to Macedonia before. We had no agenda. We had no goals. We had no clear cut direction. All we had was a Macedonian man, an invitation, and the Holy Spirit. We wanted it that way. Most of the ministry and speaking that I do around the world, has a set schedule, set times, set venues and the like, which is fine. But this trip was going to be different. This trip was going to be a Holy Spirit Treasure Hunt. Just show up and see what happens. Sounds crazy, huh?
Holy Spirit Treasure Hunts like these are why I sold my business years ago and went into ministry inside and outside of the church. I guess I was created to find out what God is doing and join in, not try to make God do what I want to do (or at least I try too). Since my mid-twenties, I’ve wanted to see “His kingdom come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
Today, I’m afraid many in Christianity want it the other way around. They seek the kingdom of God for their sake, not God’s sake. They use God as a means to their own end. That’s an OK place to start but not to finish.
So what happened in Macedonia and Greece? Guess what. You have to wait until next week to find out. In the meantime consider this verse in the Bible: “We humans keep brainstorming options and plans; but God’s purpose prevails.” Proverbs 19:21. And…God’s purposes are amazing and adventurous.
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