I was privileged to be in a meeting some months back with Richard Ross, one of the coordinators of an upcoming gathering entitled Paradise 08. Richard had an encounter with God in which he saw young people surrounding a throne, centered in a large grassy field. The encounter was marked with a sense of purity. No musicians were visible, yet music radiated from this throne. Stripped of the distractions of life, these young people could see God for who He is...transcendent.
In a recent interview on Crosswalk.com, he asks a profound question. “What if this was not to be just in the age to come? What if it was to happen on earth?”
Since then, he has put his efforts into seeing that happen on May 25th, 2008, in the middle of nowhere south of Kansas City. Literally, no visible worship leaders - only a gigantic, symbolic throne and a mass of young people asking for Jesus to take his rightful place in their lives and on the earth.
In the hour or two we had with Richard, I became convinced of a few things. One - he is an activist-theologian. It is his firm conviction that these young people need not only an experience but an understanding of who Jesus is, and his firm desire to facilitate both of those things. Two - he is the real deal. This guy has so many legitimate irons in the fire that it's amazing that he'd dedicate such a significant chunk of his time to make this happen, especially when it will - by design - not give him any increased visibility.
If you're tired of the hype, check out Paradise08.