Jan and I are part of a conference taking place for the
pastors of the North Pacific District of Foursquare Churches. The conference is
being held at Westside Church in Bend, Oregon. This is a beautiful part of the country
to have a conference and a warm and hospitable host church in which to gather. 

In the pre-service meet and greet time hundreds of us mingled for casual conversation in the atrium of the church. I was able to
connect with people I had not seen in many years along with others we have had
the pleasure to see more recently. As several of these conversations took
place, I saw the word “Exchange” printed across the heart of several of the
pastors and their spouses. This morning as I lay in bed in the darkness praying
for the coming day, I was reviewing last night and the Lord said, “I have
brought them here to make an exchange.”

Immediately, I knew what the Lord was saying because for the
last 35 years of ministry each new season Jan and I have entered began with an
exchange. In one season we exchanged a betrayal for trust. In another season we
exchanged our strength for God’s. In yet another we exchanged well-meaning programs
for a display of the raw power of God. Every new season began with an
exchange. We had to let go of something in order to take hold of something.

God asks us to give Him the things that fill our hands with
a false promise and the illusion of control. Once we give God the things we
employ to make life work without a full dependence on Him we become candidates
for something new and wonderful – something beyond our ability to fully comprehend.

For the next few days at this conference and in many places
around the world, candidates for change will be making a significant exchange
that will reset the course of their life and chart a new direction for a
journey into a new season.


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