Last weekend BrokenButLoved was blessed to have a presence at the Purple Door Festival in Lebanon, PA. Already knowing the awesome bands that would be present made the preparation exciting, even though there was a great deal to pull together. I know that both Kimmi (my awesome, loving BBL supporter) and I had our own set of expectations as we ventured north to Lebanon, but I know that even in our wildest imaginations what we experienced there was in truth much, much more then our human brains could have created on our own.
Finding ourselves located in the barn stalls of the Expo Center definitely wasn't what we expected and yet we both knew it really wasn't about us or about dusty location where we were situated. Setting up our "booth" the anticipation was electric and there was a "knowing", a "sensing" that amazing events were about to take place and that God had brought us there, together for His purpose... His will be done!!! Yeppers, it was going to be an awesome day and a half... no doubt about it.
How can I even begin to explain it all. I can't, I don't know that as I attempt to bring it to life on "paper" I will be able to do it justice = but I shall try. The music was varied in style and was rockin'. How cool is it to be doing what you love to do and also find yourself being inspired and entertained by great musician's as well? But, in truth it is what was beyond the Purple Door that made the experience such a blessing... truly... touching every fiber of my being... stretching my heartstrings until they felt they would break. Kimmi and I were given a glimpse beyond the Door... I'm not sure there were many others there that had that privilege. I thank the Lord that we were able to see passed the veil of the music and into the lives of some beautiful, amazing people... God's children... and yes my friends we are all broken in one way or another.
The kids... wow... the kids of all ages... how very cool it was to meet so many great young people. Watching them, seeing their eyes dances as they interacted with one another. Listening... carefully... fully... to them and explaining what BrokenButLoved is all about... our mission...our passion. Talking to them about Angela, her struggles with drugs, with life... her death... our loss, all the while watching their faces, their reactions... that alone continually throughout the day renewed my faith in the caring hearts of a rising generation.
Groups and groups of youth coming and going and coming back again. Each time they would return our conversations intensified and deepened until many were sharing intimate details of their lives and their own pain. Oh how I could feel the power of God's Holy Spirit falling down around us as we listened, talked, prayed and loved... giving what we could of ourselves to them... sharing with them Christ's love, mercy and grace. How much more blessed could I feel? The Lord was allowing me, allowing us the privilege of touching these young hearts, their lives if even for a short period of time. I will never forget that feeling, ever. So many young hearts need so desperately to have someone listen to them, love them and pray for them, with them. Even within our little groups there were those who would minister to each other. People do you hear me???? Youth sharing with each other... encouraging, loving... dreaming... man I gotta tell you it was AMAZING!!!!!!
Of course we also had a blast with these young folks. Their smiles were captivating and their laughter contagious... we made friends... many, many friends and with each new life that entered into mine my heart would leap with joy. Just as my heartstrings were stretched to their limits throughout the festival, so did they also play the most beautiful music. Gentle, flowing melodies that only I could hear. That's okay though, because just like each young soul that I danced with at Purple Door... I shall never forget it or them... it is all forever etched in my spirit. Thank you Lord... thank you!
Tomorrow... the adults of Purple Door...