I usually like to write something upbeat and encouraging, or share some new insight that I have received. But I have had a dry month.

Dry Times, Labor Day Contest, Online Seminar

I apologize for not sending an August Newsletter, but that was a tough month for me. I usually like to write something upbeat and encouraging, or share some new insight that I have received. But I have had a dry month. My relationship with God and others were out of kilter, and despite beautiful weather and refreshing surroundings, I was unable to appreciate God’s creation or His goodness. I was in a spiritual malaise.

When I find myself in this state, I usually read the Psalms hoping for comfort and inspiration. Quite a number of the Psalms are referred to as Psalms of lament. I found encouragement knowing that David also struggled and endured times of thirst. It seems that desert experiences are normal for lovers of God.

“As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my food day and night,” Psalms 42:1-3

“Hear my cry, O God, listen to my prayer; from the end of the earth I call to you when my heart is faint. Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, for you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the enemy.” Psalms 61:1-3

“O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” Psalms 63:1

In my personal Bible reading this past month, I noticed this verse, Job 36:15 “He delivers the afflicted by their affliction and opens their ear by adversity.” My ears were indeed opened by my state of soul and I began intentionally asking God to help me discover what was going on in my heart and spirit that was making me so weary. For I was bone tired and drained deep down in my core.

Then this week God’s good Spirit whispered a word to my heart which I pondered for several days seeking what it meant and how it applied to my condition. The word was “unforgiveness”. I was harboring unforgiveness to someone close to me and it was like a toxin in my soul. Thankfully, I was able to spend time talking with this person and after two deep soul searching sessions when God’s presence led our communicating, we heard each other and found release.

This was new territory for me. For the past two years, my vertical relationship with my Dad has impacted my horizontal relationships. But in this event, it was a lack of forgiveness in my heart, that was affecting multiple areas of my life. Thank God that he revealed my need, worked deep in my heart, and delivered me through this time of adversity. My heart is at peace, and the sun is shining again.

But while much of August has been difficult, not all has been gray. I have had some lovely times reading emails from parents who had signed up for the Book Challenge this summer. Hearing from these folks about how God is working in their homes and reading their emails has been a much appreciated breath of fresh air.

This year 955 people signed up for the challenge to read The Christian Home and Family Worship within 30 days of the conference. Many of them have already begun to meet together and seek God as a family. Which leads me to announce our second annual Labor Day Family Worship Event to provide a little added incentive for more families to begin family worship.

Labor Day Family Worship Event

This contest is for any families that have not yet made regular family worship a habit in their home, but would like to. If you have not yet established the wonderful habit of meeting at least one day per week to read God’s word, then you qualify. If you are already meeting at least twice a week, then you can participate in the longer contest that begins in January. But this event is for those just getting started.

We begin this year’s event on September 8 and continue through October 17 for 40 days. Rewards will be earned by all families that participate. The more days a family meets, the larger the amount of the prize. For all of the details about the contest, including the amount of the rewards for participating, click on this link.

Online Seminar

And for those who are interested, I will be speaking at the free, online, “Not Back to School Summit” twice this month. My first talk is on September 15th at 2:00 PM EDT. The topic is “Six Principles That Will Improve How You Communicate”.

The second seminar is “Math You Understand” on September 17th at 4:00 PM EDT.

This online event includes many influential homeschool speakers who will be broadcasting live video presentations on all sorts of relevant homeschool topics – all online, easy to access, and all for free.

Register for the summit here.

Have a wonderful end of the summer,