It has been a while since Iâ€™ve written because I have just been swamped since I left for the UK and Ireland. Iâ€™ve only managed to keep up with my email while spending so much time with some incredible people. In the UK we had people come from a wide area to share over the weekend. Many of the folks were recent immigrants to the UK from Zimbabwe and South Africa. Many of these have been through so much in moving their lives and watching their children scatter across the globe. But what incredible people and their passion to live in the life of Jesus without rituals and obligations was amazing. We ate and laughed and hiked in the woods and talked through the life of Jesus together. What great days. I left with many new friendships.
On Tuesday I arrived in Ireland to visit a wonderful network of people who live south of Dublin. Iâ€™m staying in Killiney and the picture above is the view from a Killiney Hill, looking south. Sara jumps on a big United bird to join me here tomorrow night for my remaining 10 days in Ireland. It will be great to have her here and there are so many people who want to meet her.
For a three-night period here we are sharing together about the cross of Christ and how his work reorders everything about the way we think and live. Itâ€™s a house packed with people, youth and adults together. You should see the place. The energy and fellowship between all of these folks is a joy to share in. Many of them were part of a congregation 30 years ago, that God led them to disband institutionally and invited them to live together relationally over the years. They have great hearts for Godâ€™s life. Weâ€™ve even had some folks come over from England to join us this week.
And we had the most amazing encounters yesterday. I went out to buy my mom a birthday card and one of my hosts offered to take me on a bit of a sightseeing drive along the shore. I donâ€™t usually do much sightseeing when Sara is about to join me because she wants me to wait for her. But we went anyway. Con, my host, was showing me a unique home built into the edge of a cliff overlooking Dalkey Island. The view was amazing, but we could barely see the home because it was below the wall and we could only see the roof. As we got out of the car just for a moment, the owner drove up. As we told him we were admiring his home he invited us in and introduced himself. He is Jim Sheridan a film director of some renown. He was so gracious showing us through this very unique home with all the latest electronics and panoramic views of the ocean and island. It was breathtaking!
During our conversation my writing came up as well as the fact that Iâ€™ve begun work with a group of people to bring an incredible unpublished story to print and ultimately to the screen. Can you imagine? What are the odds? He seemed intrigued and asked about the movie as well as my other books. I didnâ€™t have any with me, but weâ€™re going to drop a Jake book off later. Who knows what God might do with this brief encounter?
What movie, you ask? It is a book and a movie called The Shack and is the most incredible story Iâ€™ve ever read about God making himself known in the brutal tyranny of someoneâ€™s tragedy and restoring them in the intimacy of his love. It was written by a friend of mine in Oregon. I canâ€™t wait for everyone to read it, but we are still polishing it up a bit and beginning to put some things in play to make a movie of it. It has been an absolute shock how God is seemingly lining up the people and the circumstances to pull this off. The connections I and the others on the creative team have had back in the States the last two weeks has really affirmed Godâ€™s hand in this. We are going to need about $15 million in investment money to make this, and we already have a number of people who have expressed interest about investing in this film as a way to help reveal God to the world. We even have one production company suggesting they take it all over, but we donâ€™t just want this story told, but the heart of the Father in it as well. I sit here today in awe of what God seems to be doing at this point to bring this whole thing together. I will let you know more as it unfolds.
One last item, as I went for a walk yesterday with a couple that wanted to spend some time with me we stumbled upon a film production going on in the park for a new film called A Tigerâ€™s Tale and watched them film part of a scene. Again, what are the odds? I donâ€™t know that anything will come of these brief snippets yesterday around Dublin, but the combination of them both seemed to be God pointing the way forward with a smile on his face, affirming that he was in this and he would make whatever arrangements and connections we need to see it through.
Absolutely awesome! Then last night we got back to the cross, which is one of my favorite things to talk about. What a day in Dublin! Now I can’t wait for Sara to get here.