New Wine

“In the crushing
In the pressing
You are making
New wine
In the soil, I
Now surrender
You are breaking
New ground”

New Wine – Hillsong

 

This update comes to you at an interesting time in my life. As Christians we talk frequently about “trials” and “valleys”. So much so that many of us roll our spiritual eyes when hearing them and have either consciously or subconsciously put words like those into boxes and put those boxes on the back shelves of our minds, not wanting to open them. I won’t use those words, but by the tone of this blog you should be able to figure out that that’s exactly what I’m talking about!

Let me preface that by saying that this has been one of the most truly joy-filled times of my life! God is so faithful to his word; in his timing and in his way. This is so often a mystery to us and we don’t understand his work in and through our lives until after it is accomplished. God’s timing in this period of my life has been some of the most encouraging, affirming, uplifting and blessed experiences ever! I have felt closer to God in the past couple months than I ever have before. He has shown his face over and over when all other hope had been lost. In his presence there has been fullness of joy!

SO, it’s been tough people! Ministry done right is rarely ever easy, it’s draining on every level from inside out. My work with NYCR is no exception and continues to be a challenge. Challenges aren’t bad! I have learned so much through God’s already established and continuing work with the homeless in NYC. I have been blessed over and over to be one of the workers that has been tasked with going out into the ripe harvest! The emotional toll has been increased lately which has been taxing but there is nothing that God has called me too that he hasn’t and won’t bring me through. His promise is sure. Alongside this public ministry I have now been called into personal ministry.

Ti Chou! Oh what a joy! Love has been teaching me so much about love, how to do it well, how to emulate Christ, what not to do. These have been learning experiences in themselves but I am thrilled to be accredited with the worthiness of coming alongside, encouraging, teaching, learning from and walking with such a beautiful manifestation of Christ’s love for me. Learning about your own faults through the sanctification of love can be tough at times, and it has been, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. My relationship to and with Lauren has been the single most unfiltered picture of sanctification in my life. I can feel it. I do feel it. Coming up against your inconsistencies and failures is never a welcome fleshly experience, but the feeling of the outer self wasting away as the inner self is being renewed makes the spirit radiant!

My overarching point is that I’ve been tired. I’ve been emotionally spent. But it has been simultaneously watering me and making us flourish. Behold! I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?

You bet we do!

I need to cherish and hold in remembrance this time for me, for us. God is building in us an unbreakable and even an unshakeable foundation! I feel like I have been digging through and cleaning off dust that I have allowed to settle and finding that I am standing on the Strongest of Rocks, the Largest of Mountains. All my life You have been faithful! We are singing of the goodness of God!

This is wildly fun.

This is fiercely good.

This can not be done in our strength and knowledge.

This is sanctification.

 

Please pray for me! I need strength. I need God to continually pour into me his love and heart for people both on the street and at home. I am nothing without Him! Please also pray for Lauren and I as we seek guidance and direction for a great myriad of things that together define our future. We are nothing without Him!

Mesi anpil!

Avek lanmou,

Ben

2 thoughts on “New Wine

  1. Hi Ben! As always, I really enjoyed reading your post. I’m so glad you write these and share them with us! I hope you continue to do this because as you reflect on your own life, you inspire and encourage your readers. I love your heart, Ben! It is a joy to watch you continue to grow. Your posts are catalysts for my own thoughtful introspection and encourage me in my own walk with the Lord. I love you, Ben!

    Liked by 1 person

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