Saturday, October 17, 2009
A Good Week . . .
It has been a good week. I know that it hasn't for all of you, and I am sorry for that and I stand in my heart beside you, but I wanted to share a bit about our week.
Last Saturday I had the privilege of doing a wedding for a young couple who came up through our youth group and who are both moving out of their parent's homes and in to their first home together. They have been dating five years and have honored God with their values and choices and the way they have handled their relationship. We also, this week, got to spend a few hours talking and praying with another former youth grouper who is passionate about walking in God's purpose for his life and not straying from it. Days like those are truly a joy and encouragement to a youth leader!
We had a massive storm from Monday evening through Wednesday morning—8.8" in a little over 24 hours! It is the first time I have seen our ponds full while the grass is still brown! The storm (and subsequent wet hills) brought a peace with lighting our woodburning stove. To commmorate that favorite "first days of a fire" we broke it in by roasting Hebrew National beef franks in it on a stick (thanks, Andy, for introducing us to this tradition!). I have included a couple of pictures of our ponds/property as well as one of our wood stove tradition!
On Friday we were blessed to be able to take a family day and join Rich and Carolyn Lingor on Rich's boat at Lake Lopez for some relaxation and fishing. We went after Blue Gill and, under Rich's expertise and Carolyn's expert opening of the live well, we caught close to forty fish! It was a banner day and we plan to celebrate by frying them up tonight and eating well! I have included a few pictures of some proud girls with their individual catches and with Rich and the net of fish that reminds me of the net Jesus' disciples must have had (a lot bigger, of course) and of the time Jesus cooked fish for the disciples on the beach after His resurrection. I'd say we are following a good precedent!
I have been excited about some of the things God has been showing me this week and last about parallel, interwoven threads that run through history from Creation to Revelation. Four of these threads include:
1) Satan's attack strategy of first inserting doubt in to a believer's heart and mind about God's love, trustworthiness, goodness, Word, and power and then, after doubt works its way in, tempting the believer to think that he or she can find true pleasure, wisdom, or provision apart from God (on their own).
2) The thread of faith that stands in conviction of God's love, trustworthiness, goodness, Word, and power and commits to that conviction. This is the thread a few men and women choose to walk as God's friend.
3) The thread of the cross and resurrection of Jesus, and of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on God's people, that runs foreshadowed through the Old Testament (and gives us understanding of the Old Testament), and through the pages of history today that we live in (between Acts and Revelation), and on in to our hope of Heaven in the future.
4) The thread of God having a people set apart to be intimate with Him, to minister to Him, and to show His glory to the world. We are those people, heirs of Abraham and Israel and Jesus, set apart to minister to God, to be intimate with God, and to show God's glory and invitation to the same to the world.
I taught on these four threads last Sunday, and will teach more about it tomorrow, and it has stunned me how an understanding of them helps us understand history, current events, our walk, the attack against us, the role of faith, our amazing identity in Christ, and our purpose.
Additionally this week, I feel like God has given me a vision for our monthly family services to teach (and show some awesome videos on) why God's Word, the flood, Creation, the ressurection, etc. are believable and scientifically and historically supported. It is time for the rest of the world to be on the defensive and apologetic for their unsupported beliefs, not for Christians to be ashamed of, and unable to stand strong on, the truth!
It has been a good week. Thanks, all, for all your prayers and love and encouragement.
(These pictures are also on my Facebook page if you want to see them in better detail.)