In May 2005 my wife Linda and I were privileged to attend a week at SonScape in Colorado. SonScape is a "small group spiritual retreat with personalized pastoral counseling for pastors, missionaries and their spouses. It is a week-long experience of exhaling the fatigue and staleness of life and breathing deeply of the Spirit of God. A place to rest, receive, and renew in the beauty of the Rocky Mountains..."
After a wonderful week of having a true "mountain top experience", the Lord didn't waste any time in letting us in on his intentions for allowing us to go. The descent was quick from our "Mount of Transfiguration" in the Colorado Rockies back to the valley below...
As we were preparing to leave, one of the other participants at the retreat came to our cabin. He seemed a bit uncomfortable, but looked me in the eye and said, "I believe God has given me a word to share with you." I didn't really know what to expect, but politely sat down and allowed him to share what God had placed on his heart.
He began reading from 1 Samuel 22:1-2...
So David left Gath and took refuge in the cave of Adullam. When David's brothers and his father's whole family heard, they went down and joined him there. (2) In addition, every man who was desperate, in debt, or discontented rallied around him, and he became their leader. About 400 men were with him...
The prophetic word he shared was that the Lord was about to make us a rallying point for those who are "desperate, in debt, or discontented." It would not be easy working with wounded people. I was stunned and speechless. Little did he have any idea how "right on" those words were to be for our us.
Indeed, our band of Guayaquil house church believers is made up primarily of these kinds of people. We feel God is using us to seek out, love, disciple, edify, and church the rejects, the losers, the marginalized, the forgotten...and yes, the desperate, in debt, and discontented!
As the years have gone by since this prophetic word was shared with us, I have been amazed at how "caves of Adullam" literally describe who we are. Our "caves" consist largely of women in prostitution, abandoned elderly, homosexuals, broken marriages, the sexually abused, drug addicts, alcoholics, kids from street gangs, the hopeless, the extreme poor, the financially indebted, the unemployed... all seem to gravitate towards the refuge they find in the Guayaquil house churches.
What is interesting about the desperate, indebted, and discontented in 1 Samuel 22, is that in 1 Chronicles 11, they become "David's Warriors." The "rejects" become mighty warriors and men of valor. In chapters 11 and 12 these men are individually named. They are singled out for their valor and formidable deeds. This is our prayer too. That all the outcast, hurting people He continues to send our way, will be transformed by the Holy Spirit of God into mighty warriors for the Kingdom.
As we approach this Season of Thanksgiving, we are grateful to the Lord that He continues to provide places of refuge for those who are hurting. Will you pray with us for the "Adullam Caves" in Ecuador?