28 April 2015

Be Strong & Very Courageous

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This past weekend, Morgan had the opportunity to go to our church’s Men’s Retreat in Oak Glen. This was the picture he sent me when they arrived at camp on Friday afternoon.

For much of the weekend, it was cold, drizzly, and fogged in. However, the fellowship they experienced, the Word that was taught, and the encouragement they received warmed their hearts and put a fire in their souls to be all that God intends for them as the leaders of our families and communities.

The kids and I treasure our time with daddy and like most families, weekends are precious but I could not think of a better reason for Morgan to be away from us. Unlike us women, men usually have a more difficult time squeezing in personal refreshment and encouragement. I’m so glad he enjoyed himself and returned excited and renewed about the Godly vision and calling on his life.

The theme for the Men’s Retreat was, “Be Strong and Very Courageous.” This familiar verse comes from Joshua 1 and I thought I knew it well. In fact, the verse is hanging in Zachary’s room.

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” ~Joshua 1:9

However, when I saw the theme, the word, “Very” Courageous caught my eye. I knew the verse as simply, “Be strong and courageous.” I thought it was interesting that the word “very” was added so I looked it up in Joshua and here’s what I found.

“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

~Joshua 1:7-9

So often, we focus on just one part of the instruction, don’t we? In this little passage alone, God instructs us to be careful, to obey, do not turn, stay on the path, keep the Book always on our lips, meditate on it day and night, be careful (again), do not be afraid or discouraged, and be strong and courageous…VERY courageous.

It takes a lot of courage to be a man after God’s own heart. A warrior who will fight for the oppressed, serve with a humble heart, be a friend to all, and pursue what is good, holy and right.

I’m so grateful to be married to my warrior man. Thank you for never giving up on anything or anyone. For having sincere compassion for others as well as the passion to lead by example.

You will be our son’s first hero and you are already our daughters’ first love.

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Morgan, Clint, Joe, Tim, and Ben. Cabin mates and brothers in Christ.

A photo right before they left to come home… the sun finally broke through!

Praise God for the hearts of these men.

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