We are sitting in Lowell and Darla’s kitchen. The boys are doing some school work. Tyson is working on prepositional phrases in English, and Colton is dividing and multiplying. Carter is playing Super Smash on the Peterson’s Nintendo 64. Not sure what the educational value is in that.

We have been camping out in the Peterson yard. It has been kind of fun. Makes me want to do some “real” camping soon. We plan to go to B.C. for a while toward the end of May.

We ended up coming to Weyburn Tuesday. It was a rush to get ready, but we managed to get the dogs, sleeping bags, school books, etc. packed up in the little camper, and arrived Tuesday night around 10:00. We had to get everyone up at 6:30 to drive Lyndon in to work as his work truck was in town. We spent most of the day just doing school work and hanging out. We did go in for the Wednesday night Bible study. Mr. Wieb is doing a series on the Fundamentals of Faith. I have been here for a few of his lessons. Last night he was talking about church. Seems like everyone is talking about church these days. He spent some time exploring the idea that there is a tension between holding to sound doctrine, and loving people. He suggested that too strong a leaning either direction causes a lack of the other. As a church, he said, we are trying to walk the road between those too ditches. Hmmm.

I found Colossians 1:1-8 very interesting as we were going through the class. Paul is writing to believers in Colossae and in his introduction he is thanking God for them. He is thankful because they are living in faith and love (how I want to live!). They are living in this faith and love because they have a hope of Heaven, which is the hope they have had since they first heard the Good News. And then, in verse six, he clinches it with, “Thoughout the world, this Good News is bringing blessings and is spreading. And that’s what has been happening among you since the first time you heard it and understood the truth about God’s grace.” That seems key to me. He doesn’t talk about doctrine, he talks about grace. Then he goes on to commend them on their love, and then shares with them his prayer for them… about what living a life in grace looks like:

-Fully know what God wants, and that with that knowledge they will be wise and understanding about spiritual things. Why? So they can live lives that bring honour to the Lord and please Him.

-That their lives will be full of good works and they will grow in their knowledge of God.

-That God with strengthen them with his power, so they will be patient and not give up when troubles come.

-Why? So they will be happy and give thanks to God, and receive what He has promised for those that live in the light.

That is a beautiful prayer, one that I am going to pray for my boys.

Tyson, Colton, and Carter. I thank God for you. I pray that you will live your lives in the freedom of God’s grace, that as you grow you will each fully know what God wants, and that with that knowledge you will gain wisdom and understanding about spiritual things– so that you will live lives that bring honour to God. I pray that your lives will please God, that you will fill your lives with good works, and that you will grow in your knowledge of God. I pray that God will strengthen each of you with his own great power, so you will be patient and will not give up when troubles come. I pray that you will be happy and give thanks to the Father, and that you will receive what He has promised to each of you as you live your lives in the light.

I think I need to spend some time in Colossians over the next few days. I continue to be amazed by how the Word speaks. It is indeed “living and active”.

Speaking of the Word, I laughed out loud the other day while I was doing my Bible reading. I am trying to read through the Bible using The Daily Message, where Eugene Peterson has divided the Bible into daily readings using the Message translation. Anyway, I was reading in Joshua about the exciting journey of the Israelites across the Jordan River. The priests, carrying the “Chest of God”, step into the Jordan and the water stops flowing so that the people can walk across on dry land. “The people crossed; no one dawdled.” Okay, that made me chuckle. So then, the people are camped out at Gilgal and God says to Joshua, “Make stone knives and circumcise the People of Israel a second time.” Truly, I laughed. My first thought was, stone knives– ouch. And my second thought was, I didn’t think you could do that twice?! On reading further, I realized that the boys who had been born in the wilderness had never been circumcised, and so God was asking Joshua to arrange a mass circumcision of His people. Still ouch, but not the anatomical miracle I was imagining when I first read the passage. But the final amusing part of the passage… “So Joshua made stone knives and circumcised the Pople of Israel at Foreskins Hill”. How would you like that for an address? I can relate to any poor residents of Foreskins Hill, as my address is Box 666. That raises enough eyebrows. But Foreskins Hill? I couldn’t do that one. I’d have to move.

The boys and I are going to McDonald’s for lunch. We were invited to join our friend Helen Peterson there. Tyson has a date at the Olson’s this afternoon. He asked Mr. Olson if he would help him build a birdhouse. Tyson wants to go into the birdhouse making business. His goal is to sell birdhouses and donate a portion of the proceeds to True North Helping Hands, the organization that we went to Mexico with last Christmas. So, a busy afternoon awaits!

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