Seeking Sonshine

"Not all who wander are lost" – J.R.R. Tolkien


June 2016

Family of Denials

My husband and I get to teach children’s church at our church home once a month. It is amazing at how wonderful these messages are to the adults who watch these children and their curriculum! The kiddos get to play, watch Superbook and have some Q & A time before they go home with their parents. Today, the story was about Peter. I knew Peter was significant and have studied him before in a different way. Peter was the outspoken one. (We can all relate. If you don’t know who that is, then it could be you.) Peter, one of Jesus’ 12 chosen disciples, was told beforehand that God had given permission to Satan to sift him like wheat. 

Okay, stop.

Wouldn’t that be awesome if Jesus told us every time that mean guy had been given permission to come after us? A heads up would be fantastic! (Yes we know, roaring lion roaming, but to get a text saying…”devil is gonna be working your emotions today. Stay alert. I am praying your faith won’t fail you.” would be kind of cool. I mean, this is the 21st century. We have the technology.  👍😈

The interesting story about Peter is best explained, in my opinion, here:

I love kids’ Bibles and curriculum. It is so much easier and the main morals or principles are highlighted. How much easier than my note taking, over complicating, over analysis papers trying to discover what Jesus meant! You can do all that… or you can just look it up as a kids’ version of the story and get the point much faster. 😀 Peter denied he knew Jesus three times. He failed the sifting. 

Boy, can I relate. 

I just heard for the first time today that Peter was thought to be Jonah’s son. Jonah. The guy who said no to Ninevah had a son who would say no to knowing Jesus. Interesting. His dad probably let Simon Peter know all about the consequences of not following through when it came to obeying God.  (His punishments may have been harsh! It took a whale to make me listen, what am I going to do with you, Simon Peter? Don’t make me sic a whale on you, boy!)

Isn’t it odd that both father and son experienced God in a personal way through their unique professions and make up to challenge their small faiths and demand they develop boldness with their faith. So unshakeable, it is like a rock. Peter brings 3,000 souls to Christ in one preaching. He denied him thrice, was restored thrice, and blessed thrice. Interesting, indeed. Both men were passionate about their causes but each were distracted and discouraged easily. Jesus invested in this family line by using more than one generation to illustrate redemption and forgiveness. It wasn’t until they were each humbled greatly, that they began to truly understand Jesus’ plan for forgiveness, mercy and  restoration. Peter was the first recipient in this manner, in a way.

I googled the themes of 1 & 2 Peter. The two books he is thought to have contributed to our Bibles.

Shepherd the flock.

Submit to God and resist the devil.

Have the attitude of Christ.

His grace is life changing.

Faithful growth in Christ. 

From someone who witnessed our Lord personally. Don’t you want to read these books with a better understanding of who Peter was? How great he became when he finally focused completely on Christ and did not care about anything else more. That is the example we can learn, in my opinion. 

Photo Credits:

Sifting Peter’s%20Corner/eyes_on_jesus.htm

Harvest Season

I grew up on a farm in Oklahoma and one of my absolute favorite times of the year was harvest. Professional grain harvesters came and stayed in our backyard by the barn in a trailer. They brought their families on their multi -states trips. Our friends had kids that traveled with them and I made some of the best memories playing in the back of the wheat truck and getting a cold Welch’s grape soda for free at the Co-Op. It was awesome. I loved making lunches and suppers for the guys in the field. (They were always so happy to see us!) The best water I have ever tasted came from my dad’s gallon of ice water covered in wheat dust. You can’t find that at Whole Foods.  😉

Harvest meant a culmination of a growing season’s hard work. Farming is extremely difficult and frustrating. Weather has a mind of its own and still isn’t controllable yet. Every farm family has their own opinion of how farming should be done, and if you don’t agree, it’s okay. You’re just wrong. 😄 It requires constant upkeep, maintenance, nutrition, fertilization and irrigation to produce a stellar crop. (If commodity prices are decent) 

The Bible is full of stories about the harvest season. I shared this with my daughter and it is amazing what all she understands. I learn from her and my bonus son all of the time. Kids are amazing creations. ☀️

I hope to take the kids out to the farm this year and let them experience it for themselves. Harvest means something different and something much deeper to me now than it did back then. The Harvest Season is what reminds you in a very personal way how VERY good our God really is. He has delivered me from personal issues and healed me and my family, literally. And yet, sometimes I forget. Like the Israelites, I begin to grumble about my circumstances. I try to fix problems and get ahead of God’s timing and try to do His job. Because waiting in the unknown is hard. Emotional. Scary. The Land of the What-Ifs and Strategic Alliances and Planning. And it requires constant upkeep, maintenance, nutrition, fertilization and irrigation to produce a stellar crop. Just like a fruit, tree, vine or grain produced from Earth’s soil, we are vessels with potential for growth, beauty, fulfillment of goals and dreams and good works set ahead of our time for us to do. 

There will always be times in our lives where the answer will be wait. It is not often the answer we prefer. However, we have a choice. We can do the easy thing and let it guide us off course. Or. We can choose our Chazown. We can spend the time that is going to pass anyway praising the God of the Harvest. We can trust Him. Even when we really do not see a way. It’s because our eyes are not capable of seeing or understanding God’s plan. Let us seek Jesus everyday. Let us not grow weary in our waiting, for the harvest season is coming. We can trust God to help us grow in Him. 

It’s all about the relationship with Jesus. Don’t let the enemy over complicate it for you.If you don’t have a personal relationship with Christ and want it or are just curious; please explore that. It’s important that you do. 

If you prayed that prayer, welcome to the family of God. You will need a Bible and I would love to send you one if possible. My favorite app is YouVersion. There are live services of worship at places all over the world that teach from the Bible as their base of reference. We can help find you one. 

Seeking Sonshine is what it’s all about, after all. ♥️
Photo Credits:

Prayer of Salvation

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