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Because he was very thirsty, he cried out to the Lord, “You have given your servant this great victory. Must I now die of thirst and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?” Then God opened up the hollow place in Lehi, and water came out of it. When Samson drank, his strength returned and he revived. So the spring was called En Hakkore, and it is still there in Lehi. Judges 15:18-19 ESV

A few years ago I purchased a whitewater kayak at Austin Canoe and Kayak. I left a business card with the young man behind the counter because he seemed interested in volunteering with our organization. A couple days later I got a voicemail from a stranger named Gregg who had somehow gotten my card and was looking for a kayaking partner. Since it was a very wet year, most of the local streams were running, so Gregg and I had a blast over the next few weeks running whitewater while it was still around. This was the start of our friendship. On one of our subsequent trips Gregg mentioned that he had some property in Big Bend that he had never seen and was wanting to let go of. Knowing that we run a non-profit ministry, Gregg offered to sell me the property for next to nothing.

On my first trip to scout the property I was listening to the song “En Hakkore” by a Christian band that I love. The song tells the story of Samson, who killed a thousand Philistines with a donkey’s jawbone and then cried out to God in desperate thirst. The chorus of the song is a beautiful message of faith; “Call to me and I will be the spring. Call to me in need for I can turn your faith to strength.” As I was listening to these lyrics driving the bumpy dirt road to the property, I turned the corner and there was a wild donkey standing stock still beside the road, backlit by the setting sun. I began to sense God was speaking to me.

Once I reached the property and climbed to the top of the hill I was blown away by the 360° views of the pristine Chihuahuan desert landscape, and the Chisos, Christmas, and Bofecillos Mountains. The place had a sense of peace and sanctity about. There in the stillness and solitude the Lord began to give me a vision for how He wanted to use this place to bring rest and renewal to His servants who were weary from fighting His battles, to be a wellspring in the desert that He would use to turn faith to strength.

That first visit was over 2 1/2 years ago. With a lot of work and a lot more prayer En-Hakkore has become a solitude retreat with a small cabin that people in the ministry can use for free. Please pray that God would draw those to this place that need a touch from Him.


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