I’m inspired tonight by the tenacity of the human spirit.

That drive inside of us to live, to love, to create, and to make an impact.

We never know exactly how our lives will change the world, or if even we’ll have the courage to allow God to work through us in a powerful, meaningful way.

Certainly, as Pastor Craig Groeshel taught us today, God wants to do great things through each of our lives – but we must have the courage to act in bold obedience.

Today, Earl Schatzer and his family inspired and encouraged me.  We introduced you to Earl this weekend at Elevation Church during the 5B4 – it is embedded below in case you missed it.

When I met Earl and his wife last month, I learned he was a Marine and a war veteran.  He is also a survivor in every sense of the word.  This man doesn’t know the meaning of “give up” or “can’t”.  You can tell by the stories he tells, and by the look of joy and determination in his face.  And by the fact that though he’s had seven surgeries to fight his cancer and he’s lost more than half his body weight, he’s still a hard-working employee and dear husband and friend.

Earl visited Elevation Church for the first time today.  Inspired by your generosity as we support Hope Cancer Ministries and by the teaching of Pastor Steven Furtick on television – he wanted to see our church for himself.  He was only able to stay inside for a few moments.  By the third worship song, as he lifted the name of Jesus, he was too breathless to continue.  He rushed out, but told his family to remain inside to hear God’s word preached.

They stayed, and it seemed God stirred something in their hearts – I’m looking forward to seeing them again, soon.  As Earl’s family drove away, my mind reflected on all the friends I’ve known and loved who’ve fought cancer battles.  I’m blessed to have many friends as survivors.  But my heart breaks for the families of those whose lives were taken far too soon by such an ugly disease.

To celebrate cancer survivors, and to honor those who have lost their lives, join Elevation Church October 22 as we support Hope Cancer Ministries 5k/10k event at McAlpine Creek Park.  It’s called “Changing Leaves, Changing Lives.”  You can sign up here.  Thank you for investing in the mission and vision of Elevation Church – your entry fee is covered!