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Thursday, August 6, 2015

Encounter of HOPE

One of the most hope filled encounters that I will not soon forget was a face to face sit down conversation with one of the most amazing guys I've ever met!

This guy has had such an incredible ministry of encouragement over the years that every time I'm with him I leave a richer, deeper, better person in the Lord because of our time together.

His name is Brian and besides being one of the most spiritually in tune people that I know, a regular prayer warrior, and an unbelievable truth giver, He also has Autism, Tourette Syndrome and OCD.

He can't communicate through spoken word, but when He sits down at his Dynavox machine, and his mother holds his wrist to calm his movements, and he begins to peck with his pointer letter after letter to form the sentences He needs to deliver...I stop and listen, and listen good!


When I started as Student Ministries Pastor at my former church, Brian asked if he could sit down with me and talk about getting involved in the youth ministry in some way. So he and his mom and I got together and with her help he communicated to me that he had a passion for young people and wanted to serve in some way but with his issues wasn't sure how he could be used.

Well, it didn't take long and we realized that not only could this self taught genius, type...he would type deep, lyrically challenging and soul stirring prayers to God in the form of poems. They were absolutely stunning masterpieces that God used to challenge, inspire, convict and basically pierce the hearts of those who heard them.

So I asked Brian if His ministry would be to write a prayer that we would open up our weekly student worship service with, and get us in the right frame of mind and spirit to enter into the time with God each week. He agreed and we embarked on an incredible run of prayers, and poems that God used to touch the hearts of many students and adults through the years.

I quickly learned that when Brian had a word, it had depth and meaning and usually was the exact thing I needed to hear. Being around Brian reminded me of the slogan from the old EF Hutton commercials that said "When EF Hutton Speaks People listen", that was so true of him then and is still so true of Him today.

God used him to speak truth, encouragement and discerning words into the lives of many people then and now...not bad for a guy that many had written off when he was younger.

You see it's interesting as I reflect on my many talks with Brian over the years, it seems like at almost every major junction of my ministry life over the past 15 years since I met him, Brian has delivered a message of some sort that was dead on with what I was dealing with and what I had been praying about. Looking back on it God used his words in my life at the exact moment I needed them time and time again.

In 2004 when my world was spinning around and around, and all kinds of questions and doubts were going on, I sat down with Brian, and he encouraged me so much.

Right before I left to go to Ukraine for the first time we sat together and he basically said to me that this trip was going to stretch me like I have never been stretched before and was going to change everything in ministry for me...As usual he was right on!

In 2008 we sat down again and in a few short sentences that took over an hour of painstaking, keystrokes accompanied with loud outbursts from the Tourette Syndrome, he gave me exactly what I needed to hear and once again at a major juncture in my ministry life, God used him to speak direction and encouragement to my often wondering and wandering heart...here was a brief look at our conversation, printed from his dynavox by his mom.

A message of Hope and Power from a servant of God at the perfect time...

I want to deliver a message. (Meaning he has a word from God to tell someone)

I need to let Brent know God has His hand upon his heart. I know of your
feelings of inadequacies. I know of your feelings of leaving your family alone.
I am with you and your family in every single step you take. I have a great
many things planned for you. People are in desperate need of me and you are
chosen by me to touch them. I am your author and your finisher AND you
know this! I am using you to make this confusing world a better place.

The Lord is your heart, soul and mind. I am the Balm for your concerns.
I am the Grace that seals your family. I am the Mercy that comforts you.
I am your God. I am your Salvation. I am Jehovah Jireh. It is My will that
you follow. I am so very pleased with your walk. I AM YOUR GOD."


I am so blessed to have Brian praying for me, and using his gifts for God like he does. My prayer is that each of us would listen to the words that Brian typed because they sure do apply to us all, especially the closing declaration "I AM YOUR GOD!"

Thank you God, for having a plan and choosing to use us to implement that plan. Help us all to realize that in the midst of our confusing times, you are always dead on with your message of truth! Thank you for using your servant Brian to hammer it home in my life, as usual at JUST THE RIGHT TIME and with the Perfect Amount of HOPE!

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