Christ our Rock, Appreciation for Mom, Retreat for Dad
Christ our Rock, Appreciation for Mom, Retreat for Dad
It is winter and it can be bleak and cold. It appears we are entering a period of winter in our country with changes occurring at every level of our Christian culture. Yet when I walk out of my house for my daily walk to connect with God, all of the information coming via email and other media platforms quickly dissipates. I feel the chilly but brisk wind and am invigorated. I watch birds flitting in the trees and am reminded of Jesus telling us to consider the lilies of the field and the birds of the heavens. I am encouraged and uplifted seeing the soft billowing clouds moving across the blue sky. This is a true reality check for my soul. I love being outside and reconnecting with God’s creation.
As lovely as it is being out and about on a sunny day, the purpose of my walk is to connect with the Living God. As I sing His praises, give thanks to Him, and praise His name, I am revitalized coming into His presence, close to God. I can sense that God is not wringing His hands. He is God. He is King. Turning my full attention on Him and coming close to Him is my favorite time of the day. He never changes. He is our eternal, welcoming, good Abba Father.
“Be still, and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world. The LORD of Heaven’s Armies is here among us; the God of Israel is our fortress.” (Psalm 46:10-11 NLT)
The Encouragement of the Scriptures
“Whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” (Romans 15:4)
I have just completed Exodus in my morning Bible reading. This magnificent chapter in Israel’s history was and is profound on so many levels. God revealed Himself to Moses and the children of Israel. He also made Himself known to the Egyptians (Exodus 14:8). I especially appreciated how God alone carried this wayward people for forty years in a bleak wilderness. “The LORD your God carried you, as a man carries his son, all the way that you went until you came to this place.” (Deuteronomy 1:31)
“You in your great mercies did not forsake them in the wilderness. The pillar of cloud to lead them in the way did not depart from them by day, nor the pillar of fire by night to light for them the way by which they should go. You gave Your good Spirit to instruct them and did not withhold Your manna from their mouth and gave them water for their thirst. Forty years You sustained them in the wilderness, and they lacked nothing. Their clothes did not wear out and their feet did not swell.” (Nehemiah 9:19-21)
However my biggest takeaway from reading Exodus this year, was how close God was to His people. He was not only in the pillar of cloud and fire, Yahweh was present on the mount, He was in the tabernacle, and He descended to meet Moses daily in the tent of meeting.
In addition to God’s nearness to His chosen people, I loved seeing more Jesus and was blessed to see how carefully the foundation was laid for the revealing of Jesus hundreds of years in the future. He was the pure Passover Lamb. Christ was their manna. “Yes, I am the bread of life! Your ancestors ate manna in the wilderness, but they all died. Anyone who eats the bread from heaven, however, will never die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is My flesh.” (John 6:48-51)
Christ was also their Rock and source of water. “They drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.” (1 Corinthians 10:4) Centuries later He would reveal Himself as the true source of living water. “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.” (John 4:10)
For a short study on Christ the Rock. (PDF)
Appreciation for Mom
To you blessed Moms who would love to be able to saunter around your neighborhood connecting with God and enjoying the richness of God’s creation, I apologize. I feel guilty talking about may half hour walks seeking God, when I no longer have a horde of children clamoring for my attention. Sandi, John, and I have a special rhythm, which is much more relaxed than when we had four children and were trying to birth a family business. Our pace is slower and more deliberate.
However for those of you with full quivers and a busy life trying to teach and manage many children at home, I salute you. If I were in your kitchen I would rise up and honor you. I hope you will find encouragement and blessing in these words from Mr. G. K. Chesterton.
To be Queen Elizabeth within a definite area, deciding sales, banquets, labors and holidays; to be Whiteley within a certain area, providing toys, boots, sheets, cakes. and books, to be Aristotle within a certain area, teaching morals, manners, theology, and hygiene; I can understand how this might exhaust the mind, but I cannot imagine how it could narrow it. How can it be a large career to tell other people’s children about the Rule of Three, and a small career to tell one’s own children about the universe? How can it be broad to be the same thing to everyone, and narrow to be everything to someone? No; a woman’s function is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute. I will pity Mrs. Jones for the hugeness of her task; I will never pity her for its smallness.
Some explanatory notes may be helpful. Whitely was the Prime Minister and the Rule of Three is a math formula. When I taught in a traditional school, I taught the same subject every year to changing students. This vocation of being the same thing to everyone is seen as a large career. However being everything to someone, and teaching multiple children of different ages and personalities about the universe, is so much more difficult. Mom, you are amazing. Well done.
Retreat for Dad
On March 5-7 I am hosting a gathering of men in the Pocono Mountains of PA. In this era of isolation we need each other more than ever. Come expecting to connect with men of life precious faith and meet Jesus in a fresh living way. Where two or three are gathering in His name, we can expect God by His Spirit to meet with us.
I hope you will pray about attending. If you are interested, send me an email and I will fill you in on the details.
We continue our studies of the names and attributes of God. 262 The Lord of Hosts 263 God is Kind 264 God Never Changes 265 God is Our Sustainer 266 Brighten the Corner
You can listen to them here.
Upcoming Events in March
Lord willing, I will be speaking at Spruce Lake Retreat Center March 5-7, the Great Homeschool Convention in Greenville, SC March 18-20, and the Great Homeschool Convention in St. Charles, MO March 25-27. I hope to see you in person!!
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” (Romans 15:13)
Holding on to Jesus,