Extreme–Beyond the Event!
By Major Chick Yuill –
When I began this column I promised that I would use it far more to praise than complain, far more to speak positively than negatively. Well, I don’t believe that it has ever been easier to honor that promise than now.
Regular readers of New Frontier will be aware that Pasadena Tabernacle has just held a weekend for young adults entitled “EXTREME–Beyond the Call!” And it has left me feeling as positive as I have ever felt in my ministry as a Salvation Army officer. So I’m going to say “thank you” to a whole list of people. Here goes!
* I want to say thank you to the staff of New Frontier, who covered the event and gave us such an excellent write-up. As I’ve learned to say since coming to Southern California–“We love you guys!”
* I want to thank Phil Wall, Russell Rook, Jani Rubery, Sarah Grace and Sara Nordenberg–the Mission Team from the U.K.–who through the preaching of the Word and the skillful use of the creative arts challenged us to a radical commitment to Jesus Christ in The Salvation Army. They spent themselves utterly while they were with us, inspiring us to live out an extreme gospel to meet the needs of an extreme world.
* I want to say thank you to all the young adults at Pasadena Tabernacle who prayed, planned, provided finance, and carried through the whole weekend. Every detail–from food services to worship services–was meticulously planned and worked through.
* I want to thank everyone else at the Tab. Older adults gave us their prayers, their encouragement and their financial support. A group of high school youngsters did a whole series of menial tasks with an enthusiasm and fun which did them enormous credit.
* I want to say thank you to Lt. Colonels Al and Sherryl Van Cleef, Majors Rudy and Judy Hedgren, Majors Dan and Helen Starrett and Captains Don and Ronda Gilger–all of whom demonstrated that officership in The Salvation Army is essentially servant leadership. Without any thought of position or status they got behind a local corps sponsored event and released a synergy that was awesome to behold.
* I want to thank “Praise Works,” the worship group from Tustin Ranch, whose worship-oriented, God-glorifying music helped us come right into the presence of God.
* I want to thank a whole host of people–too numerous to name–who helped in ways both great and small to make this an unforgettable encounter with the living God.
* Finally, and most of all, I want to thank the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to whose honor and glory the event was dedicated. I want to thank him for not being a God who merely comes as a gracious guest and smilingly receives our worship and praise. The publicity for the event stated that it would be “hosted by Majors Chick and Margaret Yuill and the Pasadena Corps.” That turned out to be a mistake. The real host was none other than the Lord of Hosts himself, who moved among us, touched our lives, forgave our sins, filled us afresh with his Spirit, set our feet and hearts a-dancing, and then sent us out to change the world for God and for good. For a God like this, any red-blooded, true-hearted man or woman has to be willing to go to the extreme. It’s the only way in which we can adequately express our gratitude.