I first published this October 29, 2006. I am republishing it in remembrance of 9/11.
When our team reached Gondor we made a plan to get to the whole country with the message. Ithilian was mountainous and remote. The regional capital of Minas Ithil seemed very far away. Out in those mountains were six people groups who spoke different languages. In faith we began praying for a way to get there and people to answer the call to go. In 2001 Gimli and his wife Galadrial said they would go. It was like cutting off my right arm to help them get out there. Gimli and I had a singular vision of using disaster management to reach into the remote villages of Gondor.
But this post is not about what is comfortable, or strategic, and certainly not about what is practical. It is about what God is doing and a little bit of how he is doing it. If Ithilian is remote then Mordor was a wall. Minas Ithil sits on a river looking over to Mordor. It was locked in a permanent civil war. It was a strict muslim country where the work of the Kingdom was almost completely halted. One day Gimli left Minas Ithil to come and see us in Minas Tirith. It was a grueling twenty hour drive that he decided to do in two days. Gimli slept in a little village on the river that night and the next morning rising up very early which was his custom he prayed looking out over the river to Mordor. As he was lifting up the impossible situation in Mordor to the King he was surprised to hear the King answer him. It was not audible but just as clear as if it had been. "Do you see Mordor? I am going to change everything." Now, Gimli is not accustomed to dramatic supernatural events. He was very excited and drove all the way to Minas Tirith eagerly wanting to tell me all about what the King had said. When he arrived at my home he came in and immediately told me what had happened. He said that God was going to change everything in Mordor and that we would be able to get in at last. I told him that I had something to show him. I took him into our living room where the news was reporting the second tower coming down in the West. They were already making some Mordor connections on the news coverage. Yes, it was September 11, 2001. Gimli immediately looked at me and said, 'Well, that's it! The West will never stand for this. They will free Mordor and 20 million people will have access to the truth for the first time ever!'
Of course, that is exactly what happened. I know that the King had many lessons rolled up in that one event but I still think that the most important thing that happened was that His Kingdom was expanded. It will continue to expand. His truth will be taught in all nations among all peoples. He will be worshiped among every people, tribe, and tongue. Terrible things have happened and will happen but in the end it is not about us. It is about Him and His glory.