Monday, 9 July 2007

One Night Of Hope

I'd be lying if i said I was a Joel Osteen fan. The name brought back distant memories of an unread book at home that someone had given Mom, but I had never heard his sermons. A devout Joyce Meyer loyalist (still am one), Ro introduced me to Joel Osteen a while ago, while we were flipping channels. Months later, we were at the Wembley Arena listening to the man, and what an inspirational moment it had been.

The trip to Wembley was tedious. We took three trains and walked 10 minutes to get to our well positioned seats (in front). The crowd trickled in gradually at first, and by 7.30, we had a packed auditorium filled with people from all nationalities. The show (is that what you call these events?) began with songs by the worship leaders from Osteen's Lakewood church. Singer Cindy charged the audience with her vocal range and heart felt lyrics. Everyone was at their feet singing along and clapping. Even the coy indulged in some foot tapping and mild dancing.

Before long the man we'd all been waiting for arrived on stage, amidst much clapping. What struck me most about him, was the joy he seemed to exude. He seemed happy and in peace, and so comfortable imparting that obvious that a lot of us had been so blinded by.

"The enemy isn't after our money or relationships. He is after our joy", he announced. It was about the right attitude, and I couldn't agree more. His sermon centered on praying for God's favor, and he explained it with a series of light hearted anecdotes. "God wants to be involved in your every day lives", he assured us. So if you needed guidance or merely space to park your car, all you needed to do was pray. These prayers wouldn't always be answered he said, but then we could always praise him for the fact that we were well, healthy and able to walk. Key was in never forgetting to praise God and enjoy all his blessings. Almost immediately all i felt was blessed, because there was so much to be thankful for.

Interspersed with more songs, a testimony by his mother, a talk by his wife, a verse by his song, and a song by his 6-yr-old daughter, the event ended on a positive note. We prayed, we sang, we listened, and we left feeling positive. Truly an event worth being part off.