“Thank you for making it so peaceful here,” she said as I stood there, not sure how to respond. The last thing I think any observer would call our Lighthouse gatherings is “peaceful”. Cram 50+ teenagers and 10+ adults into our home for dinner, go outside and let them all unwind (and get sweaty and stinky), then bring them all back inside for a meeting. “Organized chaos” is usually the way it is described. And yet here this young girl pulled me aside after most of the others had left, to specifically thank me for the “peace”. We talked for a bit, I told her that I sincerely appreciated the feedback, because honestly, its rare to hear from teenagers about how something you’re doing for them is going unless it is not going according to their plans or desires. The rest of that night and the next day I could not stop thinking about what she had said. All I could think about was the story of when Jesus and the disciples were out in a boat. The bible says that while Jesus was sleeping on the boat, a huge storm came up with wind so strong it threatened to capsize the boat and waves that crashed so hard they threatened to sink the boat. Mark 4:39 finishes the story with these words, “And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, ‘Peace! Be Still!’ And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.”
Even though Jesus is no longer physically present with us here on earth, I believe that the presence of God’s spirit is a real thing that we can pursue. Jesus speaks of the reality of the presence of the Holy Spirit in John 14:16-17 when he says, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.” I have no idea what the everyday “storm” of life is like for the young lady I mentioned earlier, but I’m grateful that she is coming to our Lighthouse gatherings. I pray weekly, specifically, that God would send his spirit to be present with us. From the story I mentioned above and from my own personal experience I know that the holy spirit brings peace, regardless of circumstances. I have no idea how He did it the other night, whether it was that we served her favorite meal, played her favorite song, listened to her stories, or maybe just because someone spoke kindly to her and called her by name, all I know is that in the midst of the “organized chaos” God sent his spirit and there was peace. I am so grateful for that.
This spring has been exciting with regards to our plans for building a youth center in Bunker Hill. In January, I met with an architect who was inspired by our story and agreed to take on our project for no charge. This came about through some pretty amazing circumstances that we could not have worked out on our own. Therefore, with his help we are well on the way to having our building plans approved by the state. We ended the month of April with almost $57,000 in the bank, which we are hoping is just enough for us to proceed with constructing the shell of the building. There have been some roadblocks along the way – it seems like every month we encounter a new issue – but we are patiently working through the issues and hope to begin construction in the fall this year. Please pray that our most recent issue, a filing with the state to request a variance to not install a sprinkler system, will proceed without further complications.
The need to get this building done and usable is urgent. We are having people call almost weekly to see if their children can come, but we have to say no because we have no more room in our home. Plus we are limited with regards to what else we can do in terms of additional meetings, counseling, etc., while we have just our home as a meeting location. Above our monthly operating costs, we still need to raise at least $75,000 to finish the inside of the building once the shell is complete. Please consider joining us in this mission to bring peace and hope to the community of Bunker Hill by supporting us financially. For more information about our vision for this place and this outreach, you can read our past newsletters on our website at www.LHBH.org. You can also contact me directly at chris@LHBH.org and 765-271-6687. I would love to come share our story with you personally or any group you are involved in, including your churches. If you would like to send a gift, you can mail it to The Lighthouse, PO Box 336, Bunker Hill, IN 46914. All gifts are fully tax-deductible.
Chris Edgington, Director