Hitting the “sweet spot” in tennis, carpentry or softball is when all the energy you put into the swing of a tool connects perfectly with an object and what you were hoping to see happen, happens!
Beginning with the correct swing, a decent instrument, a flash of perfect aim and a quasi-mystical alignment of forces like wind, light and sound - power and inanimate physical matter connect effectively and it is deliciously sweet. When our interactions with people have spiritual intentions, God swoops in and our efforts are met with His supernatural presence.
I have been seeing that happen lately, as I prepare this letter to you.
On a family note, our third daughter Lucia has gone off to College to major in Theater Administration. She has always loved the world of theater as it brings her to a place where hard work, her unique personal energy, culture, artistic flair and the expectations of an entire audience connect wonderfully.
Also, I think of you and how your time with God, your private thoughts and careful words and your time and resources dedicated to us is transformed into eternal dividends for many people in Italy. Thank you. You have made us the focus of all of this because you love God. May He make it a sweet spot for you. (And tell us of other times where effort and God come together for you).
Our daily opportunities come to my mind. Whether it happens in classes we teach, weekly sermons, chance encounters with people or formal counseling sessions, Donna and I see the mysterious intersection of our efforts, skills, people’s struggles and God’s powerful life-giving Self-Revelation, which brings Sweet Grace to all involved.
A few examples:
- I see the sweet spot in the eyes full of parental pride in men and women in our church as they prepare their disciples (their own kids) for baptism.
- I saw it this week in the transformed demeanor of a very religious attorney who practices in two European capitals, who has been in our study for years. Slumping in his chair, he admitted for the first time, “I guess I’ve had many spiritual experiences but I’ve never had a true conversion. Now I understand, Dan, I finally understand!”
- In my last visit to the Arab Church, I was introduced to a brand new couple who just came out of a “very dark religion” as they explained it. The smile I saw on their faces I know well. It comes from a human heart that is filled for the first time.
Pray with us for all of this. As it is with you, it comes with a degree of risk, sacrifice, focus, endurance, and much Joy. He does give us many moments where suddenly, “it happened!”.
Yours, in Christ,
Dan and Donna