“Go ye into ALL the world and preach the Good News to ALL creation.” Mark 16:15
Last summer on our vacation in Montana we drove through some of the most beautiful scenery that you can imagine. Upon coming down from the mountains in Glacier National Park a voice from the backseat rang out, “ooh, look at that meadow! I want to lie down in it.” Anyone who spent much time with Chandler knew of his love for meadows. He was particularly fond of open and green meadows, especially when they were outlined by forests or mountains. Whenever he spotted an “awesome meadow” he always pointed it out and talked about how he wanted to go run through it. And many times he did!
When I see a meadow, I typically imagine myself lying down in the cool grass, dozing in and out of sleep while the warm sun beams down on my face. But what about Chandler? What did he think of when he saw meadows? Well, one of his journal entries we found this month explains his thoughts.
“Whenever I’m in the middle of a big open meadow, I have an urge to walk. To walk across the unconquered space. This is how I see the world and my calling to go and make a difference. I’ve got to be a burning fire. Ready to ignite, to go and be a missionary to the lost throughout the whole world. I am urged by the Spirit, compelled by the (love of Christ) and called by the (Father). I must go. Lead me, oh Lord.”
Chandler was 15 years old when he made this journal entry. What did Chandler think of when he saw a beautiful meadow? He thought of unconquered spaces. Spaces so vast and unexplored that they seem to call for someone, to go and search them. To conquer them. He wanted to walk across those fields. But further, these meadows symbolized the WORLD and of all the unconquered space or peoples of the world that need Jesus Christ! He heard the meadows calling him. He felt a responsibility to GO. But to go where? Into the world. Chandler linked the physical “world” in meadows to the spiritual “world”, a world that is lost, wild, and in need of Salvation. Just like he wanted to reach the far end of a meadow, he wanted to reach into the lost world. To Chandler, to GO was 1) to literally GO and be a messenger of the Gospel to the lost throughout the world. To him the world included his home in Texas as well as the other side of the world. And 2) that you don’t just go, you have to make a difference. In our family we challenge each other with the saying “Go Mad”, which is an acronym for “ Make A Difference.” He recognized that it doesn’t matter if you go into the world if you don’t leave something behind that wasn’t there before. Regardless of his location and who he was around, his desire was to lead others closer to his Savior. Thinking of all this must have excited him and his heart! He said, “I’ve got to be a burning fire – Ready to ignite!” He said, ” I MUST GO!”. And then he didn’t plan to just go wherever or do the first thing he could think of. He ended the entry with “Lead me on Lord!”. He looked to and listened to and trusted the Lord to lead him.
So, what about you? Where are your “unconquered spaces”? What I mean is what is the Spirit asking you to do and where is the love of Christ compelling you to go? For you, the Lord may be placing it on your heart to more intentionally be a witness at work or on your high school or college campus, to be a light and share with those you work with or with your fellow students or professors. Or, you may be asked to step out and go on a mission trip either here in the US or abroad to serve and bring the love of Christ to the lost and needy. To Make A Difference you don’t necessarily have to go off to China, although it may be a call for some. In fact, I believe the United States needs as many missionaries itself as other countries do. You can Go and make a difference right in your own neighborhood.
The main thing is to GO! To Do Something! Take action! It’s obvious based on Jimmy’s journal entry that he had the thoughts of “going”. But he wasn’t content just with a thought. And he couldn’t just journal about it. He acted! He couldn’t sit still too long in the meadow. He had to conquer it. “I must go”, he said. Jesus said in Mark 16:15 to “Go into all the world and preach the Good News”. And James 1:22 says to “be doers of the Word and not just hearers only”. So what is burning in your heart? Start there, and ask the Holy Spirit to fan that flame into a raging fire. Let Him lead you. If you don’t have a starting point ask the Lord to put a burden on you heart. And listen for His leading. In either case, as Chandler ended his prayer, pray “ Lead me, Oh Lord.” May the next time you come across a big open meadow, think of the open and unconquered places that God is calling you to. And then, go MAD! Walk across it and Make A Difference!
Our Father in heaven, we thank You for beautiful meadows and I also thank You for your servant Chandler and for what he saw in the meadows. Thank You for shaping his heart and for the light, Your light, that his life displayed. We are thankful for the message of the meadow and that it was written down and recorded for us to observe and learn from. Please bless all who read this post. Father, lead us to our own meadow and give us the desire and power to conquer it for You! Ignite our hearts! Empower us to GO! Lead us oh Lord! In the name of Jesus, Amen! Even so, Come Lord Jesus!
Go find your meadow!
Chuck Brazell with Christian Brazell
(please share your thoughts)