Envisioning 2014

This next week will be spent in a different part of Uganda for us. We are going through our first “Envisioning” as part of New Hope Uganda. It’s a week of fellowship and teaching. A week when all the staff from each of the three locations, including some other people also, are envisioned. Everyone is brought together again to the common goal and common focus of New Hope. It takes place at the Kasana site- a place very different than Musana Camp! Different in its functionality as well as different in its population. Those of you who have been to Kasana know very well what that means and those of you that haven’t simply need to believe that it is different. In spite of that, as staff, we have one common goal and one common thread or theme- bringing the Fatherhood of God to the fatherless.

Our theme for the week is “Hallowed Be Your Name”. The guest speaker, a pastor from the west coast of Canada, had an inspiring, challenging, and convicting teaching the first day. I saw things in the Bible that I had never “seen” before. My eyes were opened to different perspectives and I was especially challenged by how the Lord’s Prayer was taught. We cannot hallow the Lord’s name. Only Jesus has or ever will hallow God’s name. Instead it is a prayer- a deep yearning or longing of our heart- to see the Lords name being hallowed again.

You see, at creation and before the fall of mankind, God’s name was being hallowed. It was reflected by all of creation. “The heavens declare the glory of God”. That creation was a display or a self portrait of God’s glory. Everything pointed to His glory and everything held His name in high regard as holy and pure. Even man, created in His image, glorified God and hallowed His name. And that was the original design of creation.

Can you imagine for one minute what that may have looked like?! Everyone and everything living in perfect harmony to the glory if God. No death and sin. So man and woman in their perfection, being created in His image, being “fruitful and replenish the earth”. Everywhere in every corner of the world you would see man glorifying God! No sin and death. Every plant and tree and flower continually growing and producing its fruit forever! Nothing would wilt or fade. No winter seasons or dry seasons of dying and decaying. No fear of any animals- with each other or by man. As it is spoken of in Isaiah 11:6, the animals will live together in peace and a little child will lead them. What an amazing picture of creation! Everything working together to bring glory to God and to hallow His name.

And so our prayer, the deepest yearning and longing of our heart should be to see that again. And it will not happen as long as there is sin and death. You see, when sin entered into the world, God’s beautiful creation- His self portrait- was spoiled! Nothing today is as it was originally designed and created by God. Sure, there is still great beauty in it all. Look around you. Sunrise and sunset, the mountains and hills, majestic trees, beautiful flowers, the powerful lion, giant elephants, tiny little mice, and even some people (in what is being accomplished by God through their lives) are somehow a small reflection of what God created so many years ago. But. BUT!!!!! It was all spoiled by sin.

So now the longing of our hearts, our deepest desire, is it for God’s name to once again be hallowed? That was a real provoking thought for me. A gut check if you will. Am I praying “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”? Until that happens, God’s name will not be hallowed again. No matter how hard I try or how badly I want to, I cannot hallow God’s name. Only He (God) can hallow His name.

Wow! Wow!! That stirs in me an excitement and a desire to see His name hallowed. Only when Christ returns will that happen. Heaven on earth. Remember….. “Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven”? What a glorious time and day that will be!