Have you ever wanted to just do a dance in a public space, even though people would be watching, and you would be embarrassed beyond belief? Maybe you just received a phone call with great news and your first inclination was to jump for joy, but you didn’t because….Why does there always have to be a “because”?
In modern day Europe what many people feel, they struggle to explain in words. Something is wrong with the world around them and this feeling of not knowing or understanding what that is, is like a splinter in their souls….constantly annoying, a bit painful and never ending. The feeling of completeness or happiness is sought in many different ways, but nothing feels truly freeing. Instead of gaining a sense of wholeness, many feel even more disconnected or lost after seeking out the world’s wisdom. I have actually heard statements like, “It seriously feels like there is a hole in my heart, and nothing will fit into that hole.”
The MAZE. It is an evening where the ultimate illusions in life are contrasted with the ultimate goal of salvation. The MAZE is a 2-hour presentation where Jim Munroe, founder and chief performer, along with his two assistants, confronts the audience in such a way that reality is held in check. Captivating illusions keep the crowd wondering what is reality. By the end of the MAZE each person in the audience is challenged to consider this truth: the reality of Jesus Christ!
European Initiative is heavily engaged in a war for Europe’s spiritual destiny. From the outside looking in, there are many signs that point to this continent’s spiritual demise. Atheism and humanistic thought are running rampant; 7 out of the top 10 countries in the world with the highest suicide rates are in Europe. Germany, the country that I live in, will close the doors to over 15,000 churches in the next few years! Most Europeans have no interest in Jesus and few know why He even came to earth. Europe has become the dark side of the moon in its spirituality but as one of my favorite authors, C.S. Lewis, writes in The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, “Aslan is on the move!”
In some respects, Easter is front and center in Germany, and in other ways it is invisible. From a historical perspective of acknowledging Germany’s Christian roots, Easter is honored. Public schools were closed the week before Easter and again this week. Businesses, and all retail stores were closed across the nation on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday. For many, Easter in Germany is a two-week holiday – nothing wrong with that. The stark reality is that the vast majority of Germans have no spiritual connection to this, the most important Christian weekend of the year. Easter has become such a popular vacation time that many churches downsize services. Imagine churches in the USA and other nations cancelling services on Easter due to lack of interest.
Despite the recent protests of thousands, including David Hasselhoff (yes, him), developers got their way and tore down a section of the Berlin Wall. Being a resident here for almost six years, I am still in disbelief that this has happened.
The current condition of the state church in Germany is literally being demolished as many beautiful cathedrals are being converted into nightclubs, restaurants, recreational centers, and even Muslim mosques. These state run churches are being forced to close their doors and sell off their property.
Bringing life to spiritually dying Europe requires some out of the box thinking. In 2012 European Initiative was privileged to engage in many creative forms of unconventional ministry. The Lord’s vision to reach His creation is simply astounding and it never ceases to amaze me how His ways are SO much greater than ours! 2013 is already shaping up to be a wild ride in Europe for European Initiative, as we look forward with expectancy to how His plans will unfold.