In the mid 1990’s I was privileged to be part of a distinct
move of God. We watched the power of God, on many occasions, show up in many
different ways. People were delivered from evil, physically and emotionally
healed on a regular basis; we had encounters with angels and demons. It was a season of what I can best describe
as “Power, not mere words” as Paul would say in the book of Acts.

My three boys, Tyler, Michael and Caleb were very much a
part of it. They watched things happen that most of their friends have never
seen. But, it was gone by 1999 and we
have not touched the same experience since. In 2006 I asked the boys, and their
two sisters and new little brother, if they would pray about moving to Africa
and helping orphans. I purposely stayed
back from each of them, as I did not want to influence their decision, (I have
been known to that time to time!). It took a while for them to tell me “Yes” or
a loud “NO”, you can read their stories here. In
the end it was a “Yes” from all of them.

Coming back to the USA after Africa was the hardest season
of our lives. The kids felt lost, Lisa and I felt lost; we were alone, and a
bit dazed. Church became unattractive as we had seen so much in Africa. One of my older kids said it best, “Dad, you
expect us to go to youth group and jump up and down? We can’t”! I was watching my family become disillusioned
with so much. And, it was my fault. I know it has been over used, but I did
feel like William Wallace in the movie Braveheart when he removed the mask of
one of the guys that was supposed to be fighting with him, to find he was
fighting against him; Wallace lay in the middle of the battle field, depleted
and empty…

To be honest, we are still a bit disillusioned and for sure
in a daze. Five years later and we have now lost one of our shining stars. When
I received the call at 1:30am April 17, that my son was dead, and that he died
in a very brutal way, I knew. The “Authentic” that he experienced as a boy –
the reality of Africa and how people live in so much pain and poverty, and most
of what we do for them on this side, makes it worse. Drugs, confusion, Church,
parties, are ALL the same to this generation. They were all a dead end.

I believe we have a whole generation that feels like Michael
felt. They have watched our leaders, politicians, pastors, Hollywood, and a lot
of parents make promises, and then live a life full of secrets and deception. Almost
every leader that Michael grew up with, fell in sin. As his dad, I became
apathetic and laid down my sword. There was a part of me that stopped warring
for my family and for a generation.

We have an overmedicated, narcissistic, disillusioned,
generation that is looking for an answer. They just want something real, and I
promise you, they will run to it and be free once they taste it! We are about
to see another “Movement” hit these kids, are we ready to pick up our swords
and never lay them down again? Or maybe
that question is just for me??