The village we stayed in in England where I was hiding and pondering life! (in Devon)
As I was away on my trip to England, I had time to consider and re-evaluate where I am going to focus my life and time in the years ahead. I always like to pull away and ponder how to be intentional, what I can cut out, and how to keep focused and centered in my ideals. There have been three times over the years of family and ministry when the Lord has very specifically called me to cut back or purge my life and activities, so to speak--and this is the third time.
At heart, I am a "feeler" on Myers Briggs and I love to reach out in relationships and meet needs and "be there" for my friends. However, getting spread too thin in the mire of a national presence with articles, books, speaking, fb, twitter and all the rest, I have found that I need to put some new borders and boundaries around my life, so that I can remain focused and centered in my home with my sweet family.
I actually love my family and love my children and who they have become and still find that they need me all the time. To keep my home a peaceful place, with homemade meals on the table, needs met, conversations free and to be available to help meet their needs, requires a lot from me.
I also want to end well. I want to have heard from the voice of Jesus and to have known His heart and to have obeyed Him. So, at present, I am still working out what that will look like practically.
When I was in London, and met here and there with many people, I was convicted again about just how important the home is to God's plan. (Read my blog from yesterday.) When a home is a haven of life and instruction in righteous teaching and training of character and intimate relationships, where love of God is modeled in each season and moment of life, then a human soul has the opportunity to be cultivated and developed upon excellent mental, spiritual and emotional food and can develop into a healthy, strong, vibrant soul.
Yet, when there is no intentional home life for children, they will become subject to whatever philosophy and morality is being spread about in the world. And so, we were surrounded by people whose whole lives had been built upon humanism, the immorality displayed in modern movies and media, and whose appetites were defined by advertising, materialism and commercialism.
And so, I have perceived over the years that the Homes in many of our nations are sick--deficient, weak in influence, and not a place of leadership training, but places so simply stay alive with outside culture and media defining the very soul of those dwelling there.
Satan is alive and active and wants to perpetrate a godless philosophy. He must hate families and especially hate those who give themselves to the divine work of the family, because when strong relationships are forged, accountability and influence follows. I remember when I lived and worked in Communist countries in the 70's that I read a lot about communism and socialism to better understand those who were my target audience for the gospel. Stalin wrote that if you could own the hearts of the children, by placing them in daycare and public schools by the time they were two, then you could wipe out religion, faith and morality in the next generation. How true he wrote.
In light of that, I have been praying just how I can be the best steward possible of what I have learned Biblically about family, parenting, mothering and walking with God in my life-time. I know that when I see Jesus face to face, He will hold me accountable for what I know.
God has made me a writer since I was a little girl. I think about writing when I am in the shower, in the car, when I am cleaning house, all the time. And so I have quiet times, study the word and then want to write about what God has taught me. I have 3 immediate books I feel that I would like to write that I hope would be of great encouragement to women. Each of these would come with Bible studies and a planner of how to strategically plan in intentional life for the Lord.
The Ministry of Jesus was personal
The way Jesus literally turned the world upside down in his lifetime was by building deeply into the lives of his disciples who went into the world with his messages. Of course this is why Clay and I focussed our home training for our children on home discipleship, to send them back out into the world to reach their world for Christ.
But I also love discipleship--training other women how to think Biblically, how to know and study the word, how to understand a Biblical home, how to become a teacher of wisdom, how to be a Titus 2 woman to other women.
And so the first part of that application is that I will continue to hold Mom's conferences, where women can come together and hear Biblical speakers and then go home with a book in hand to study with their friends about the ministry and mission of motherhood, and books on how to walk with God. Wherever there are groups of women living in fellowship with high ideals, they are much more likely to hold fast to those ideals and to encourage and pray for each other. So developing more small groups online and in reality is one of my main focuses.
I also want to play the role of a Titus 2 woman and pass on personally what I have learned from 27 years as a mom, 30 years in marriage and 35 years in full time ministry. Hosting intimate training times in my home, where moms can taste home-cooked food, listen to Biblical instruction, share in close fellowship and ask questions, have time to plan and pray about developing a plan for their personal lives and ministry, is something I want to keep doing each year. I consider these 3 day seminars as sort of Mom's Biblical Institutes. (Date: August 11, starting 5:00 p.m. ending Saturday night, August 13, leaving Sunday morning, August 14, Monument, Co. Flying into Denver, Colorado)
This will be a time of hard work, intense speaking and note taking, working and hopefully the women who attend will come out with a much clearer vision and inspiration of how to live and leave a godly legacy.Last year the women who attended developed friendships with kindred spirits from all over the US, Canada and China.
Because if my mom's possible imminent death, and other family issues, we had to postpone scheduling these intensives until just a few weeks ago. Because many of the issues have not resolved, (my mom is still hanging on), we decided to just have one intensive training this year at my home in Monument. We have taken the intensive application off the website because we did not want too many people to apply and be disappointed.
We have a few places left, and so if you are interested, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org We have lowered the price of the training to $450 dollars, because in my home town, I will not have to fly in speakers or house them at a hotel and pay for their meals. The tuition includes 3 nights of a hotel, (2 to a double room--individual rooms would be more); all gourmet meals, tea times, note book, speakers, favors and personal training with me and my team of leaders. We have filled almost all of the places but we have just a few places left. If you are interested in finding out more, please contact our office at the above address or call at 888-488-4466 and ask for some information to be sent to you. We are only allowing 20 people to attend, (up to 24 if we get overwhelming response.)
I can't wait to tell you what else is in our plans--and of course they always include you--all of you who come to a conference, give a book away, lead a group are a part of a great group of women reaching out to help us strengthen families all over the world. More tomorrow!
I think this special training is going to be life-changing and a blessing.
Clay and I never personally benefit from any ministry meetings, but we do hope to use the remaining finances to help support Mom's movements that are starting internationally, as we never require any leaders to pay when they come here from beyond North America. At this training we will have 4 international guests who are hoping to start mom heart groups and training in their own countries.
I have learned so very much about being still and hearing God's voice--More thoughts tomorrow about moving toward a simpler life.