Recently I've been convicted--
convicted that, while academic learning is vitally important to my children's growth and development,
it's certainly NOT everything.
There's so much more to these childhood years... to this time they spend in our nest.
There's so much more to do and share and discover and experience... apart from the books...
as we interact with one another and with those around us,
as we explore and examine and unearth the world around us,
as we watch the flowers bloom and the tree leaves unfurl,
as we step away from the confines of our home and head OUTSIDE
to feast on the glory of His creation.
So the other day we set the schoolbooks aside and took a walk... through the "wilderness"...
and we marveled at the hand of our Creator,
at the mystery of His design, and at the splendor of His kingdom.
The giant oaks, the babbling brook, the little discoveries along the way--
like the deer that scampered across our path... the tiny frogs that hopped along the water's edge... the baby "gooslings," or is it "geeslings?"... nay, goslings, Bub recalled, that journeyed in a row, one right behind the other as mama & daddy book-ended the bunch.
The kooky-looking bugs that sat atop the tall "prairie" grasses...
the magnificent butterflies, adorned in black and white...
the hollow logs, the hiding places, the fortresses for critters both large and small...
all these are part of His world,
and all deserve a moment or two of our appreciation and attention.
So we walked. And we talked. And we climbed. And we laughed.
And then I felt guilty.
Because my focus is not always the best.
Because sometimes I get distracted and lose sight of the end goal.
Because sometimes I forget why we're really here.
But then God, in His mercy, reminded me--
yes, Chris and I will make mistakes along way,
yes, we'll blow it sometimes,
and yes, we'll mourn our sinful choices.
But, He, abounding in ever-lasting love,
will be faithful to fill in the gaps,
compensate for our shortcomings,
and pour grace over our errors...
as He leads them in His way.
And then I smiled.
And I thanked Him for His goodness.
And I walked on.
"Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
and He will make your paths straight."
"He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD,
"My refuge and my fortress,
in whom I trust!"
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stand in the path of sinners,
nor sit in the seat of scoffers!
But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and in His law he meditates day and night.
And he will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither;
and in whatever he does, he prospers."