Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Seasons of Darkness

We must remember that seasons of darkness in the Christian's life are in fact, normal.  We still should try to rise above the darkness, to reach for the light of Christ; but above all we ust remember that we are not lost, and that we're not in this on our own.  Christ is right there with us.  

I waited patiently for the LORD;
And He inclined to me, 
And heard my cry.
He also brought me up out of a horrible pit,
Out of the miry clay, 
And set my feet upon a rock, 
And established my steps.
He has put a new song in my mouth—
Praise to our God; 
Many will see it and fear, 
And will trust in the LORD. 
Psalm 40:1-3

Take Strength

"You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus."
2 Timothy 2:1

These strong, simple words can be spiritual adrenaline for us when we need them . They were written by a man who knew what he was talking about, as he himself was in prison. He was writing to a young minister who was also suffering and evidently tempted by doubt, fear, even uncertainty of his call. The older man admonishes him very lovingly to take his share of suffering, take his share of hardship like a good soldier, and to take strength from the grace of God.

Where shall I ever find the strength I need to get through this experience, this ordeal, this day, this week? The answer is Take it! Take it from the grace which is ours already, in Christ Jesus.

"Here it is," He is saying, "Will you have some?"
"Yes, thank You, Lord. I'll take it."

A Lamp for my Feet, Elisabeth Elliot

Monday, March 2, 2009

Faith Bible Conference

February 9-13
LaFayette, IN

One cannot help but come away from Faith Bible Conference refreshed and energized in your walk with the Lord. Listening to these men and women of faith stimulates a desire for truth, growth in faith, passion for lost and hurting people. This conference, though it is designed for those heading into the counseling ministry, has proven to be very helpful for me in my walk with God.

We get a whole lot of knowledge and theory in our Reformed churches; and for sure, this is all very good. But what are we struggling with every day? what are we saying, thinking, doing? how are we spending our time? sometimes it's hard to connect theory with practice. We struggle to know how to handle our problems Biblically. I struggle to know how to help my friends - what do I say when they go through hard times? How can I help them, and direct them to the One who can alone provide true hope even in our trials?

God has used this conference to bring me to my knees and to see my sin. But He doesn't just leave it at that - He also shows how we can overcome those sins and live a life full of joy and hope! It is my prayer that I may learn to put to practice what I'm learning, and help others to also find the joy and hope in believing in our Saviour's name.
We had a wonderful visit with Steve and Amy and Sierra on the Sunday that we were there; they've been living in Chicago while Steve goes to seminary training there.
The weather was beautiful, perfect for a walk... it brought back memories of Michele and my walk from the previous year...

Sunday night, Brian, Liz, Charlene, Tim, and myself all enjoyed playing a game of "Train through Europe" (is that right, Charlene?)
I didn't really take many pictures the rest of the week...
packing up and heading home!

he loves his teddy's

Mom went down to check on Jaden during his nap one time last week.... she was shocked and frightened to see his empty bed, and frantically searched the rest of Carole and Kevin's place, only to come back to his room again, and find that he had climbed out of bed and lay down amongst all his teddy's, and promptly fell back to sleep.