Stirred – to affect strongly; excite, to incite, instigate, or prompt, to rouse from inactivity, quiet, contentment, indifference, to be emotionally moved or strongly affected, to become active, as from some rousing or quickening impulse

Mark sat still and watched from the outer perimeter of where all the action seemed to be happening. The park was brisk with activity late into the night. All around him were youth hungry for something to do. A make shift band were trying to grab the attention of their energy but an underlying vibe seemed to be at work in the crowd.

He watched a young thug type upend his 40 ounce beer and then theatrically crash it down on the cement, exploding it in a spray none seemed to mind. The crowd seemed stirred, desiring more. Mark took notice of the rougher element wanting to make rule of the scene with their antics.

This seemed like a make or break moment. Realizing he could get the crap kicked out of him, he knew these kids didn’t deserve to be given away by his cowardice. One quick prayer he offered, “God, you brought me here tonight so you better have something wonderful to offer!”

Without further hesitation he pulled a flare from his backpack. It seemed crazy but so was this moment. Removing the cap to expose the end of the flare he rubbed the coarse striking surface until it exploded into a bright flame. Everyone standing near him backed away but then started whistling and whooping with cheers of approval.

Mark lit three of these and tossed them about at a fair distance. The crowd focused on him. The band had lost their momentum but came back into the moment with a sound of rhythm. Mark could feel his throat dry up but all eyes were upon him and this radical act. “God what do I say?” he asked.

With courage he’d never known, he stood alone in the crowd. “I am one of you. I am lonely. I have hurt. I have fear. I want more than this existence I am living. I go to parties hoping for some expectation but it leaves me empty beyond a momentary experience. I have drunk and taken drugs looking for that experience and every time I wake up the morning after as though I poured out my soul. I have sought my existence and happiness in others, especially girls. It feels good for a while but then I realize they are looking for something more, just like me. Can I ask you to be honest? Does any one of you feel these things? Is this why you are here?”

An explosive encouragement came from the crowd. The make shift band added to the mix by stirring them up further with their rhythm, declaring the truth of Mark’s statement. With more courage again, Mark spoke once more, “Okay friends, you’ve been honest with your hearts, so let me ask you a bigger question….do you believe Jesus can change your life?”…..

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