From February 10
“Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord, until he comes and showers righteousness on you.”
When I began re-reading through the Bible chronologically this year, I was struck at how many people had soft hearts and responding quickly to the Lord when they were young. Abraham responded in faith and obedience, yet later lied about his wife (twice!), and took matters into his own hands when a baby didn't appear fast enough. As a young woman, Rebekah quickly agreed to follow Abraham's servant to her new home, yet as a mother of adult sons, she conspired to deceive her husband. Miriam trusted God to take care of her baby brother floating in the water, but years later added her voice to the complaining Israelites against Moses and brought God's wrath upon herself manifested through leprosy.
“Blessed is the man who always fears the Lord, but he who hardens his heart falls into trouble.” Proverbs 28:14
Last summer when several young men and women came to help with SITAG's conference, I realized how crusty my own heart had gotten. Like a pond that slowly freezes from the edges, my heart showed signs of becoming hard. Four of the five were children of Bible translators in the Solomon Islands. Their hearts responded quickly to the Lord, and their lives glowed with a vibrant walk with Him. SITAG's Conference fed me with good teaching from God's Word, sweet fellowship, and times to focus in prayer and worship with our SITAG colleagues. After Conference, our family jumped into a hectic pace of back and forth from village to Honiara, and once again I felt my heart began to grow icy around the edges. Arrrrrgh!
“Plough deep in me, great Lord, heavenly Husbandman, that my being may be a tilled field, the roots of grace spreading far and wide, until thou alone art seen in me, thy beauty golden like summer harvest, they fruitfulness as autumn plenty.” from “Valley of Vision”
In the day to day survival of living in a village deep in another culture, I struggle. But I love living here, maybe because life in Marulaon keeps me so aware of my inadequacies.