The Day I Remembered I Am An Intovert

Time to continue with our adventure in Japan!

Day two of camp arrived. I already shared the devotion I wrote for the students a couple posts ago. In addition, it was seminar day. Students had the opportunity to attend two seminars of their choice. The offerings ranged from Identity in Christ to Preparing for College. Cyrus taught a seminar focused on answering some tough theological questions. I taught on overcoming worry (I plan on sharing more about this later – maybe as a series). We were both privileged to be used in this way!

After the devo time and seminars we broke for lunch and then some afternoon free time.

And that’s when it hit me. I was exhausted. Not physically tired but emotionally and mentally drained. Since we stepped foot in Japan I had been caught up in a whirlwind of introductions, remembering names, and get-to-know-you conversations. I know for some people this is exciting and energizing, but not for me. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy people, but after a while I need a relational rest. I need time for introverted introspection and reflection.

Fortunately, I was able to nab a bit of that time before we were on to the next activity; but I also was reminded of my need to rely on God for strength in the areas of my weakness. It was only by His power that I made it through the next several days with very little introvert time!

And His power at work in me brought joy to my heart. That evening I once again jumped out of my comfort zone and into a post evening session small group. It was an amazing opportunity to witness a small group of High School girls open up with each other about their hurts and convictions. One girl even shared her desire to make a u-turn in life and start living in a way that pleased God – she wanted to recommit to Him!

I absolutely love seeing God moving in people’s lives – no greater joy!

I’ll close this post by sharing Wednesday morning’s devotion with you. May you be encouraged!

No Longer a Child

Bible Reading- Eph.4:14-32

In the world’s eyes you are on the brink of adulthood. Many of you have already made decisions about what you are going to do after high school. You have spent time preparing and growing academically, physically and mentally for what lies ahead. But where do you measure on your Spiritual Growth Chart?

In our reading today we are reminded that it’s time to grow up – spiritually. We all need to grow by being rooted in God’s Word (not swept away by every new idea), by loving others, and by becoming Christ-like. But this growth is not accidental. God works in us as we respond to His Spirit and pursue His Truth.

  1. Just as you purposefully do certain things to grow physically or academically, you can purposefully take action to grow spiritually. What can you start doing, even today, to contribute to your spiritual growth? 
  1. Sometimes we all feel confused or have doubts about God, but it is important to continue to pursue the Truth. If you are confused or doubtful about God, the Bible, or Christianity right now, have you given up pursuing the Truth or are you continuing to seek it? What would it look like for you to pursue God?

Pray – Be honest with God about any doubts you have and ask Him to help you find the Truth! Ask Him to convict you of any areas in your life that you need to start obeying Him.

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words and The Word

I had the privilege of writing morning devotionals for the students at Shorebreak. Every morning after breakfast we gathered for a time of music and then everyone got a copy of the devotion for the day and went to find a place of solitude; a place where they could spend quality time with God, without distraction from others.

This was the first devotion of camp and I wrote it to supplement Cyrus’ teaching on the G.O.S.P.E.L. (see the last post for the meaning). I wrote it for a High School audience, but God’s truth surpasses the generational gaps! Oh, and by the way, the theme for the camp was reversal, so I tried to sneak that in there too 😉

May these words and The Word be an an encouragement to you today.

    Once Upon a Time                

Bible Reading – Ephesians 2:1-10

And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

Once upon a time mankind was at peace with God. Adam and Eve walked and talked with God. But then they made a decision which caused humanity’s spiritual separation from God. From the moment they ate the forbidden fruit, humanity took a turn down the path of sin and death. So instead of following God, our passage points out that we have been obeying our fleshly desires, the course of the world, and the deceptions of Satan.

But there is such good news! God is rich in love and brought us life in His Son Jesus! We can now walk and talk with God the way He always wanted. We don’t have to go back to obeying the world, our lusts, or Satan. He has given us a great gift and prepared wonderful work for us to do to bring Him glory. Jesus has reversed and for all time demolished the power of death and sin in our lives.

  1. If you have not trusted Jesus as your Savior, will you take time to consider this passage more carefully? Read it a few more times and look for God’s tremendous love for you and His desire to bring you life!
  1. If you are a Christian, are you living in the life of Christ? Are you obeying the world and your own desires, or relishing the gift of God and seeking after those good works that He created and saved you for?

Pray – If you are convinced that you need Jesus as Savior, pray and tell God that you accept His free gift of grace! For those who are saved, ask God to convict you of areas you may need to choose to follow Him instead of your own desires. And ask for His help reverse the sinful directions you are going.