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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Restart In Memphis

For those of you who have been following our adventures and praying for us night after night...thank you so much. I can't even begin to tell you....we are so grateful. The HGIOG Tour fired back up in Memphis Tuesday night after an eight day hiatus (time off, which for me was crazy days at the Passion House where plans for our Regional Events and World Tour are heating up) we are heading into a stretch of 10 nights in 12 days. If you do the math, that's crazy! So here we are in the midst of a run of five straight nights that began in Memphis, TN.

And Memphis was amazing. Memphis has no shortage of churches and lots of religion, but this night was alive from the start.

For one, there's all this nervous energy going on that first night back (for me, wondering how in the world I'm going to remember how many earths (think golfballs) can fit into a 4.2 mile-wide star named MU Cephi, which of course means little to those of you who have yet to join us on the tour this time around, but is one of many bits of info that awaken us each night to the grand scale of this God we know by name) and in some ways it's like we'd never done the tour night before. But everything clicked and it was one of the best nights ever in Memphis, a place that is so special to the Passion Movement as a whole, the home of days spent at Shelby Farms for the first OneDay that marked many of us forever.

Yesterday we blew through lovely Mobile..the one in Alabama. Sadly, it was spring break at The U of South Florida (our location) and students were scarce. Bummer. But a bunch of people showed up ready to go for it and we had a really cool. And then things got tough. Our runner for the day (a volunteer who drives us places we need to go during a tour day) who is a youth pastor in Mobile got the message as he was hanging out late waiting to bring our drivers from the hotel that a drunk driver going 100mph had plowed into the bus carrying his youth group home from the night they just spent with us. All we knew was that people were injured and students were being taken to the hospital, and instantly he took off. We prayed...and waited, but all night long we couldn't reach anyone to get an update and our hearts were heavy.

It was crazy...I had just talked to Chris (the youth pastor) after the night was over and he was telling me how much his students loved the night and that they were going on and on about it. Now peril had come and we didn't know what to do, a theme that has followed us as, among other things, tornados hit south of Birmingham hours before we were to play there and a bus carrying a college baseball team tragically crashed over an interstate overpass in Atlanta the next day as we arrived there. Hurt. Pain. Chaos. Confusion. Death. Everywhere. And now again.

When morning came the news was tragic...and miraculous. Sadly, the driver that hit the bus died and one of his passengers was in very bad shape. Yet, none of the students were seriously injured (though the front of the school bus is no more), though the driver and a few others suffered more significant injuries that are not life-threatening and will heal. The youth pastor left a message for us today saying those students will never sing "How Great is Our God" the same way, as that was the last song of the night and the one that was on their lips as they headed into this collision.

This tour...these nights...are more than a concert...they are hope for those in the valley of the shadow of death. For many, it's a great reminder and something they very much believe. But for others, it's where they are as they try to find their way through utter darkness carrying loads that are crushing their souls. Yet, the truth is, we all have pain and loss waiting around the bend, and in those days what we celebrate in these nights will be true...His grace is enough for whatever this life brings our way. Let's pray for this family who has lost a son and for those who will now recover (hopefully that's the case of the seriously injured passenger in the truck) and thank God that He is all we need.

Today, Jacksonville brought sunny skies and 80+ heat, enough to make CT and I wilt in our annual tennis outing with some friends from the International Christian Tennis Academy. Let's just say we didn't win too many points today and got waxed...and we were playing girls, at that! OK, so they're pros... But tonight...wow. Many voices and a loud anthem for His fame. There was something going on from the start...some kind of God-at-work sense that makes me think things changed in this building tonight and will never be the same.

Quickly we'll be in Fort Myers and West Palm. We are so humbled by the journey and will treasure every prayer you offer for us. Much love from the bowels of Veterans Memorial Arena. LG

33 Comments:

  • Hello Louie and Passion Team,

    I am glad to hear you all had a nice beak from tour. I will continue to to lift up you all in prayer and the people who have been touched by the tradegies along the way before and after the tour events. Thank you for continuing to serve faithfully our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!!

    To Him Be the Glory !!
    Angela - N.C.

    A Good Read ... I John 3:18-19

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/16/2007 12:15 AM  

  • I am looking foweard to seeing you guys here in Ft Myers tomorrow night.It's safe to say that today,and this week, has been really rough for me.Some major school stresses, on top of a death in the family last weekend, has not made life very enjoyable lately. I'm hoping this will be a nice end to a lousy week. God bless, and prayers ascending as you make your way here.
    Lauren

    By Anonymous Lauren, at 3/16/2007 12:18 AM  

  • Hey Louie,
    Thanks so much for sharing an update with us on how things are going on the tour.
    I'm so sorry to hear of the accident in Mobile... praying for the family of the those in the driver's car and for the students in the bus... that God will be their Comfort... their Peace... & their Healer... and use what has happened to draw each one nearer to Him...

    and thanks for being so transparent...You seem to remember all those facts so flawlessly it's hard to imagine you having a second thought about it. (That's kind of comforting in a way, I was starting to think your brain was some kind of super computer :)

    Praying for you all as you head on to more stops in Florida... that you will be filled with and centered on Him, used as vessels that He can pour through... and that God will go before you and prepare people's hearts to encounter Him during the evenings in the way that they need and He desires.

    Blessings all~~

    ps- I'm so glad you guys made it to Fort Wayne a few weeks ago despite the questionable weather that day. The evening was a blessing to several friends. thanks so much :)

    By Blogger Kimmer, at 3/16/2007 12:21 AM  

  • Hey Louie!! Thanks for the update about Chris and the accident. Cam got me a hotel for the night so i wouldn't have to drive the 3 hours back to Troy. I stayed up half the night, however, worried about Chris' youth.

    I got back here around 9 this morning and now i know who Karl Rove is.. haha! It was great hanging out with you guys yesterday. It really blessed my heart to just help serve on the tour for even just that one day. I have A LOT more respect for you and the guys now that i have actually seen what you go through in a day on tour. I prayed for you guys as i thought about yall through out the day.

    Good luck on the last couple of stops on the tour. You guys are a blessing and i can't wait to hear what other adventures you all experience!! Glad i got to say hi!! Your friend, -Ashley

    P.S. The mission team and I roll out Saturday morning at 4:30a.m. to head to San Antonio for our spring break mission trip!! We'll be traveling about 13 hours. I don't see how you guys do it!! :)

    By Blogger Ashley, at 3/16/2007 12:50 AM  

  • wow... this takes me to the verse that says God is in all and holds all things together...

    IN all and HOLDS ALL things together...
    in the good and bad, in death and life, in tragics and victories... He's somehow in there... and he's holding us together... He surely is a mystery...

    indeed, hope is the only feeling that comes to me... i cannot dance around and smile while such tragic things have transpired...but i cannot get angry..
    i look to God, His eyes and His heart are reassuring in and of themselves.. i look to my Father, and my hope is secure...

    see you in west palm... with hearts humbled and knees bowed unto our Creator...
    love

    By Blogger Kristellys, at 3/16/2007 1:07 AM  

  • Wow! Thanks for your love for God. It was an amazing night in Jax. Been to the last 3 Passions and tonight was an overflow of how Great our God really is. It was my wife's first time and she now sees ehat I have been telling her about the evenings. Not an event but a time of showing who God is and how great He is! Yes, we are all on a different journey but have the same Great and Glorious God who can make a difference in all our lives. I was humbled by one of the guys tonight who made his way to the floor and truly worshipped and showed what this is all about. Thank you!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/16/2007 1:12 AM  

  • I was at the Mobile show (the Mitchell Center is on the University of South Alabama, the University of South Florida is in Tampa), and I have to say I thought there would be a lot more people too. However, I was on the floor and there were definitely plenty of people around me praising God.

    My friends went in Jacksonville and were too tired to say much when they called after the concert but all three really loved the talk.

    My friend who was with me at Passion added that the whole time she couldn't stop thinking how glad she was that I had heard the message too because I'm trying to make a decision right now and have been stressed about it, when I should be realizing God is big enough to handle it.

    Thanks, and I will be praying for the youth group in the accident, that is very difficult to go through.

    By Blogger Morgan, at 3/16/2007 8:24 AM  

  • Hey Louie,
    Just wanted to say thank you for coming to Memphis! What an amazing worship service that night with Chris and Matt! I wanted to let you know that I'm apart of Anneleen's Spiritual family that you talked to that night. I thank you soooo much for praying for her and Holland. God is doing amazing things in her and in her town. After she was on the podcast around 10 to 12 people were saved around her town so yes God is moving! Once again God left me in awe that night and of course the next day at work i looked up a lot of info on Laminin! Thank you Louie for what you do and how you care for my age group.

    For His Glory!!!
    Carlos - Memphis

    By Anonymous Carlos, at 3/16/2007 9:35 AM  

  • Thanks for sharing all these informations.
    I think, too, that it's definately more about this whole time than "just" a serie of concerts. You move something in the spiritual realm in the whole country.
    And perhaps it's my personal believe, but from my experience the weather is very often a mirror of what's going on in heaven.
    Every night when I pray for You I can feel, how special chains fall apart. People are set free and take the fire in their places. The enemy don't like that.
    My prayer right now is that like in Psalm 91 God will give his angels charge of You to guard You in all Your ways.
    And weather won't hinder You, illness won't hinder You or anything else...You will tread on the lion and the adder, the young lion and the serpant you will trample under foot.
    God's blessing be with You the rest of Your journey.
    Rahel

    By Blogger Rahel, at 3/16/2007 10:07 AM  

  • All I can say is, wow. We are still holding you all up in prayer!

    By Blogger Aslan'sGirl, at 3/16/2007 11:41 AM  

  • I can't tell you guys what you have meant to me over the past 4 or 5 years, but that's another story. Here's a short story about last night in Jacksonville. A little background.... about 2 years ago I started having some strange neuromuscular problems. I am a worship leader and it was devastating because it limited my guitar playing. Well, about the same time my keyboard player was having some similar problems. Over the next year we leaned on each other, and prayed for one another quite a bit. I began to notice that my friend was getting much worse and his issues were very progressive. He was soon diagnosed with ALS. It crushed me and his family, but God has been glorified through my friend. He was there last night and as you guys were playing the last song I was in a huge worship/dance/hug with him and his family praising God in the midst of this mysterious tragedy. As physically broken as my friend is, I watched him trusting an invisible God to hold him together.

    Thanks and I’ll see you at Thirsty!!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/16/2007 3:09 PM  

  • Hey Mr.Giglio
    Thanks so much for the update!! I have been praying for you guys! Wish i could have seen you guys on this Tour!! But I will continually be praying for you all! Our God is the Everlasting GOD!!

    Miranda

    By Blogger FanofGOD, at 3/16/2007 3:49 PM  

  • Louie,

    So sorry to hear about the accident. That is so sad! I will be praying for everyone involved.


    On a lighter note:
    It seems that you guys are bringing bad weather here to Florida.....shame, shame :(

    I saw you in Orlando a few weeks ago-it was raining. The weather here has been absolutely beautiful, well up until yesterday when it started to rain again (I am assuming it started about the time you guys hit the Florida line.....lol).

    Today, it is overcast with tornado warnings. hmmmmmmm I am begining to wonder about you guys.

    But I do have to say the weather in WPB tomorrow is suppose to be beautiful, but we will see once you guys get on the highway....lol. If it starts to rain again, I am totally blaming you...........lol. And although I love you all, I might have to request that you stay away from Florida for awhile.......:)

    Seriously, we in Florida love you guys-gray skies or not. You are always welcome to our "Sunshine" state!

    love and blessings

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/16/2007 4:01 PM  

  • i was wondering if you guys could post a blog on INVISBLE CHILDREN... april 28th is gonna be the big day where everyone goes out and sleeps on the streets...
    you've heard of this, louie? yes no?

    invisiblechildren.com

    By Blogger Kristellys, at 3/16/2007 4:05 PM  

  • that story breaks my heart. I will be praying for all of them.

    I'm so glad that the tour is going well though. I can't wait to see you in St. Louis!! It's gonna be an awesome night! Praying for you guys! God Bless!!!

    -Lauren

    By Blogger Lauren, at 3/16/2007 4:27 PM  

  • Last night in Jacksonville was an AMAZING night of worship. Thanks for being so willing to live on a bus to worship with people around the country

    By Blogger Leona, at 3/16/2007 5:41 PM  

  • praying...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/17/2007 2:17 AM  

  • Praying for you Louie.
    Daniele

    By Blogger Daniele Valadares, at 3/17/2007 5:34 PM  

  • You are so right Louie. We don't know what is waiting around the corner but we do know that His grace is enough to sustain us.

    Thank you for consistently proclaiming that.

    Holding you all up to our Heavenly Father and asking especially for stamina on this long haul on the tour.

    By Blogger gail, at 3/18/2007 7:55 AM  

  • Lifting you all up in prayer! I am glad you all had a rest.

    I saw on the news about the accident in Atlanta, am praying for those of Mobil, for Gods love to wrap around friends and family and to bring healing to all who were involved and strength to those who lost loved ones.

    In the midsts of calamity God is ever present. Gods eyes are on us all.He weeps with us.

    thank you for your concistentsy of proclaiming the greatness of our God, to those who know and those who are yet to discover.

    Stay safe and marvel with all the saints His Glory.

    Elizabeth

    By Blogger eliz, at 3/18/2007 10:56 AM  

  • Never be afraid to pray boldly to God, For no matter the crisis our Lord is aware.Sometimes it's hard to recognize God's answers, But that 's just part of the mystery of prayer.Some of the greatest heroes in history, Wore holes in the knees of their pants.For without God's grace and human prayer, Man's survival on earth is by chance.Surrender your soul and make time for prayer Sharing moments with your Savior alone.He’ll shoulder your burden and give you rest, As the seeds of his praise are sown.

    By Blogger eliz, at 3/18/2007 11:56 AM  

  • thanks for keeping us in the loop, Louie, of what God is doing on the tour. all these incidents...it's like the Father has a huge neon arrow pointing to his son Jesus saying - this is who you need! this is who loves you! do you see him? because he is here!

    won't stop praying for you guys

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 9:12 PM  

  • So many things happening repeatedly in the news the past few weeks that just makes those who hear the stories hearts so heavy. God knows our needs before we pray them, but we need to offer up our prayers to him.

    The tornados and bus accidents are all a part of God's plan. It's such a paradox to those who just can not fathom the way God works. (We ALL can't, but that's what faith is all about.. trusting in HIS plan.)

    For those on the youth group bus - I pray that each student involved feels comforted tonight. Coming from a night of connecting with God at the concert, and then having that happen.. I pray that they can remember still how GREAT our God is yet he loves us and knows us as specks on a golf ball by name.

    By Blogger <>< Janelle, at 3/18/2007 11:05 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Valerie, at 3/19/2007 12:18 AM  

  • Man it sure seems like things are going haywire sometimes. But I am so thnakful for a Lord who loved this little thing so much, that knowing what He would suffer, giving up all that He had, going from immortal to mortal, having no need for food, rest, bathroom breaks....to all of a sudden needing those things. If that's not love, then what is???

    I have no idea how those families are coping, nor can I say I want the same situation, but This I know. God is still glorious and no matter what, He is still worthy. It's just that simple.

    As far as all the tours and travels, may you be blessed in all of them. I imagine you are gettign worn out from it all, but please "5 more steps, you promised me your all". It's not over till it's over as they say. Keep it up all you guys and girls. Thanks so much for your faithfulness and love. We will pray for you as you pray for us. Be blessed.

    By Blogger forgiven and freely loved, at 3/19/2007 9:50 AM  

  • Hi Louie,

    Thanks for keeping us informed of the HGIOG tour. I pray for you all every day and will continue.
    I'm also praying for the upcoming Passion events as they unfold.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/19/2007 2:07 PM  

  • praying :)

    cya sunday :) :)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/19/2007 2:11 PM  

  • This particular blog sent Holy Spirit chills through my body. Some other ones you have posted have done that, too! I'll keep Alabama in my prayers!

    I haven't been to Passion yet, but ever since the One Day CD came out, I've wanted to go! But I've been too young. Believe it or not, I was not even a teenager at that time! I give 268generation credit for how close I am in my walk with Christ. If I had not had those worship CD's to keep me comforted in my preteen years, I cannot imagine where I'd be today. Now, I'm finally old enough to go to Passion, but the major Passion tours are over. Can't wait 'til the next worship conferences start up! Whenever that may be! I hear one will be in Dallas, which is the area in which I will be going to college! If not, I'll get there somehow!

    By Blogger amber, at 3/19/2007 5:12 PM  

  • Hi Louie,

    You totally forgot to write about the worship time at WPB :P.

    I have to say it was absolutely amazing. Thank you all for being there.

    Thanks also for taking the time to chat with me. I do appreciate it. I am truly honored and blessed!

    Thanks for your prayers concerning our dear friend Gail! She is doing well.

    Safe travels and blessings,

    Valerie

    By Blogger Valerie, at 3/19/2007 6:10 PM  

  • so encouraging!!! my prayers will continue to be with you & the boy's family. it is so true though: HOW GREAT IS OUR GOD? we can't even grasp it...

    keep on furtherin His legacy!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/20/2007 9:24 AM  

  • Hey Louis,
    In the news today is a report that mathematicians have mapped E8, a cluster galaxy...I can't wait to see what great info about our Great God you have for us based on this!
    We pray God's continued blessings over this tour and praise Him for His amazing grace so far!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/20/2007 10:20 AM  

  • I don't know if you don't want this question to be asked or not...but what's the word on a new passion 07 CD release date?

    I assume it won't be as early as it was last year.

    By Blogger Phil Strahm, at 3/20/2007 11:33 AM  

  • That concert was utterly most amazing. I sat in my seat after you got done talking and thought how can these security guards sit here and hear this amazing stuff and not want to fall on their knees in adoration and thankfullness and repent to God at how great He truely is. God is so amazing and I love serving Him and praising His name!

    Becca P,
    16 years old
    Jax, FL.

    By Anonymous Becca P, at 3/24/2007 10:58 PM  

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