I just finished "Prodigal God" by Tim Keller and it was quite refreshing for my heart. In it, he dissects the two lives of the brothers in Jesus' parable in Luke 15. Both seek and try to find freedom, life, and joy. The younger brother turns to selfishness and debauchery. He turns to "popular" sins like money, sex and rebellion. The older brother's err is not quite as mainstream but probably even more common. He tries to find his joy and significance in his own goodness. He is the good church man. He is the moral one.
Both are base and decrepit and I find both within myself to degrees that frighten me. I am the younger brother in my selfish attitudes and life choices. I am the older brother in my having the audacity to find my fulfillment in the father's tasks rather than the father himself.
I am thrown upon the grace of the gospel once more; and I am very pleased by this. Join me, please, in finding your joy and being in Christ rather than your good deeds or your moral life like us older brothers so often do. Join me in dwelling in Christ alone rather than the flighty joys this world promises to us younger brothers.
-We start staff meetings tonight. I am very excited to reconnect with the team and trust God for big things this year. I'll keep you posted about these times.
-One of the things that is difficult with our job is diving deeply into our church community. The time/travel restraints often just don't allow us to do that. Yesterday we had a great time at our church picnic and Melissa and I both grieved this reality on the way home. We love the people at our church and don't get nearly enough time with them.
-Tonight will be Noah's first of many childcare visits for the next 9 months or so. He normally does great with babysitters but the frequency of them, we fear, will bring a not so pleasant transition. Pray for him if you get the chance please.