Nostalgia. This is a sentimentality for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations. This feeling kicks into overdrive when you go back to that place and get ready to see what God is going to do all over again into the future.
This week I am going back to the French Gulf campsite at Lake Isabella. This is the site where Revival 07 took place ten years ago. This was the beginning of our summer camp at Compass Bible Church. For the next six years of my life, every summer, the highlight of the year was Revival and seeing God save students. In fact, I am hearing reports from friends who went to Revival 17 this year that Jesus still saves a decade later.
You can see the pile of dirt on the left side of the picture above. That is where we set up our tent. That is where Pastor Mike Fabarez preached five sermons on the story of the Rich Young Ruler from Matthew 19. This young man seemed to have it all and yet he walked away from Jesus sad. Pastor Mike taught who God was, he taught about our sin. He preached a whole night on the word repentance and it was like some of the students had never really heard the word before. He preached about taking a leap of faith and showed a picture of his son jumping off of a cliff into the lake.
I remember one night after the sermon I was standing with a student who was shaking. Tears were streaming down from his eyes as he sobbed. He told me he was having a hard time believing what Pastor Mike said. It was so different from what he had heard in church growing up . It meant not only that he needed to change his mind on what it meant to be a Christian, but that his life still needed to change. That night, I heard him cry out to God and call on the name of Jesus to be saved. I can still hear it.
Revival 07 began a decade of serving with Dan and Beth Lauder. Little did I know then, that in 2014 God would call me to stop running Revival and to plant another Compass Bible Church in Huntington Beach. Little did I know, Dan and Beth would come with me. They were counselors on the Orange team. They called themselves CalTrans. On the Orange team was a high schooler named Bre Moore. Today you might know her as Bre Thompson. She directs our Kids Ministry with her husband Taylor.
I remember after Revival 07 we had an event back home at Salt Creek Beach in Orange County, CA. This young girl came up to me. She told me she was not able to go to Revival with us, but that she had been saved while at home. She said she was looking over the notes of our Beach Nights that summer and decided to repent of her sins and put her faith in the gospel of Jesus. One of the things that I have been concerned about is false professions. Are students just saying they want to be saved because other students are saying it? Is this a camp high that will go away when we go back home? Is this girl just saying she was saved to fit in? That freshmen girl didn’t even go to camp, but over these last ten years Jesus has proven he really did have the power to save her. Her name is Haley Litz. She won’t miss camp this year. She is the one bringing all of the details together behind the scenes to make it happen.
This week I am going back to the same spot to start a new summer camp: GREATER AWAKENING! Can God still do a revival in America like he did back in the day of Whitefield and Edwards? Can Jesus still save young souls like he did 10 years ago? Let us pray to our Father in heaven and let us see him answer us here on earth! As we begin again, I have even more confidence in the power of God to save and even more excitement to see what he will do next! I wonder what some of the students and leaders at camp this week will be doing ten years from now!
Please leave a comment and let us know if Jesus saved you at Revival or one of our Awakening camps in the past!
Please leave a comment to let me know what was the first Revival you went to!
Please pray we will see Jesus save young souls at Greater Awakening this week and let us give God the glory together!
*Here’s the highlight video from Greater Awakening 2017. Praise the Lord for answering our prayers and saving many young souls. Please pray for these new Christians to continue living out their new faith in Jesus! Pray for our youth ministry leaders to follow up and continue the mission of making disciples!