I had to write a quick post as we are on the road. This morning we are taking a break for a few hours to decompress, do laundry, and then move along to the next destination.
We arrived in Colorado Sunday. The flight was perfect. Upon getting our rental car we received a FREE upgrade to a minivan (thank you God!), so we are enjoying touring in a 2012 Doge Caravan.
As a family we were able to enjoy an afternoon at The Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs. Poor Grant was battling a cold so he moved kind of slowly, but he was a real trooper. What a beautiful place - totally unlike anything my kids had seen before. As the kids completed their Junior Rangers badges in the park the booklet said, "What is one thing you remember from your visit to the Garden of the Gods?" Grant wrote:
"I will always remember the awe inspiring Rocky Moutains."
I love that kid.
My husband and I are just enjoying sharing all of these moments with our children. They are the perfect age to travel, learn, and have fun! These days will be short and we want to make the most of them.
Monday and Tuesday and part of today (Wednesday) were spent at the LCMC annual gathering. I attended as our church delegate, while Hal and the kids took in more sites around the Denver area. The picture above is just one shot from the gathering and also a picture of our pastor and myself. Our pastor is new to our church (5 weeks!) and has an exciting vision and passion for ministry. It's been a blessing for our family to get to know him better.
It was refreshing and inspiring to be around so many other Lutherans. In Georgia we have few LCMC churches, so it was interesting to meet and speak with people from around the country and world (LCMC has congregations in 11 foregin countries, too.). I heard a story of a man who was denied a VISA into his home country because of he was flagged as Jesus follower. He now conducts services from American VIA PHONE for other Christians in his country. We heard from another man that was imprisoned at the age of 14 for his belief in God.
What an honor to hear these stories and how humbling for my own faith.
Two things that stick out to me (there are so many, really) are:
We need more boots on the ground for Jesus!
Church is VERB, not a noun. Bringing people to us in CHURCH isn't working... we need to go to where the non believers are and be Christ in the world. We are very good at "church" -- but not so good at converting non beievers.
Not only am I coming away equipped with some very missional information for my congregation, but I am also coming away with a broader perspective on life, equipped to be missional in my own community.
As I laid in bed last night I was thankful to have these few days. I get SO caught up in our homeschool life that I forget THERE IS LIFE BEYOND OUR HOMESCHOOL! Please don't take that the wrong way. Homeschooling my children is a big priority, but I think I have focused TOO MUCH on that priority, to the detriment of other things (my relationship with God, for one).
We're off to Wyoming now.... praying you are all having a productive and happy week!