“But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you.” (I Thessalonians 5:1)
Paul’s words come embedded with a warning to the church–sort of a, “It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway” message regarding a certain watchfulness and an inspired willingness to live in the present moment with hearts close to the knowledge that everything you see around you exists for today– but could be on its way to dust tomorrow.
I’m cultivating that focus here at summer’s end. Could this be why God designed the seasons so that rich fruition would give way to the gentle warning of autumn? Why else does the riot of color exist alongside the smell of decay, unless it is for our instruction and our comfort? God is nothing if he’s not a gifted teacher, using all the senses and bending over backward to make sure we get the point.
Borrowing the concept from Emily P. Freeman, I’ll be engaging in a bit of reflective practice here, and inviting you along for the ride as I harvest the seemingly significant bits from my calendar, pictures, journal, reading life, family events, and other happenings here on the hill.
Reflections from Ministry
Summer 2019 (from my journal)– Sunshine, mosquitoes,a glorious day of planting, and suddenly all the seeds are buried. Let the waiting begin.
This year, we planted only what we need, but everything we need. The plowed up field is wide and long with plenty of room. Some years, I have planted in fear of running out of space, but not this year. Everything is planted in abundance and all the seed has been squandered.
Then God said, in his quiet way, “You can live this way as well. Behold your boundaries. They are wide, and there is plenty. There is more room than you imagine. There is more space than you are letting yourself occupy.”
And so, the matter was settled. This was God’s green light, and I went off to Christian Youth in Action Training for ten days of ministry to and with teens who were being trained to share the Word of God with children.
Of course, whatever we are teaching to others, we finally begin to understand ourselves.
Reflections from Writing
I’m tempted to look at statistics here on the blog and to share with you the “most popular” posts from the summer of 2019, but instead, I will share my favorite bit of writing: a piece I wrote for Desiring God about the desperate dad in Mark 9 who brings his son to Jesus and howls the well-known lament, “I believe. Help my unbelief.”
The truth is that parenting exposes our need for faith, and our best move is to make room in our parenting practices for Jesus to put on display his power and his love for our children. What does that look like in practice? I’m still a work in progress, but you can head on over to Desiring God where I share a few thoughts about connecting our children with Jesus, the Power Source who enables us to make our parenting vision a reality.
Reflections from Worship
Local church ministry is one of the most important foundations of my following life. It’s there that gritty life-on-life connections and service remind me of what a sinner I am. It’s also where I share Goldfish crackers and God’s Word with a handful of four-year-olds each week.
This thought from our faithful pastor sank deep into my bones as he shared truth this summer from the life of Joseph:
“God’s sovereignty means that he is the undisputed boss of the universe. Reconcile your soul to the sovereignty of God.”
Reflections from Home
I walked into the post office bearing an envelope addressed to Maine’s Department of Education. It contained my final Notice of Intent to Continue Homeschooling. This fall begins my twentieth and final year of homeschooling.
I fully expected balloons and confetti to fall from the ceiling.
Since they did not, I went home and made pizza.
Home continues to be my anchor. There are ten Morins spread over three households now, and when we are all together, we are loud, we laugh a lot, and somehow, large quantities of food disappear like magic. I doubt if I will live long enough to find words of gratitude sufficient for the gift my family is to me.
This summer I led my first ever face-to-face book club here in Mid-Coast Maine. If you’ve read the Sensible Shoes series by Sharon Garlough Brown, the irony of four women meeting weekly to talk about spiritual formation will not be lost on you. Our discussions ranged far and wide and, at times, the clock was our nemesis.
In Chapter 5, the spiritual director in Sensible Shoes lit a candle and began her meeting with this beautiful prayer that I invite you to pray along with me today:
“Jesus Christ, Light of the World, come and light the dark corners of our lives. Where we are blind, grant us sight. Where we stumble in darkness, illumine our path. Quiet us with your love, and enable us to hear your still, small voice. For you are our dear friend, Lord, and we long to be fully present to you.”
Thank you for reading. It is my prayer that this will continue to be a place in which we come together around Truth to hear the still, small voice and to come away resolved to follow and to obey,
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