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dewey family

These are some of my favorite people on the planet. It’s always fuzzy when we try to remember how long we’ve been friends… five years? six? I guess I can hardly remember a time I didn’t talk to my Jessie.

She is one of those faithful and loyal friends. The kind who would offer to kick knees in or bring over emergency chocolate. Jessie tells the truth, even when the truth is hard or unpopular. She believes the best in folks.

She just doesn’t give up on people.

I’m so glad too. Because I know she won’t give up on me.

family portrait
motherhood portrait
children photography
daddy and daughter
baby portrait

I feel so lucky to be able to do Jessie’s family portraits. Photographing her people is always fun, even though she swears it’s going to be crazy town. Maybe it is a little crazy… but it’s the sweet, amazing, joy filled crazy that makes me wish the sunset wouldn’t happen so darn fast.

oh and p.s. Jessie is also a super talented photographer!

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    friendship

    “..the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person- having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all right out together; certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and then with the breath of kindness blow the rest away.” 

    -from the meaning of marriage

    I’ve got these friends. I can call them on my very worst and lowest of days and they see right through all the dramatization and right to the heart. They can gently say, “yea, you’re wrong here” or “sounds like this triggered _____. You’re gonna be ok.”

    I can’t say what a relief it is to be known. While living transparently is vulnerable, it’s incredibly freeing at the same time. Sounds a bit like nonsense, but it’s true. I live it. I can attest to the beauty of being deeply loved in all my crazy and all my flaws.

    I know there are women out there who have very few, if any, female friends. I guess my heart hasn’t suffered the wounds from mean girls- the kind of wounds that shape a deep distrust and dislike for the fair sex. I see women as interesting, kind, thoughtful, generous, and deeply compassionate humans. My experiences with women has been nurturing and kind- a spaciousness for understanding one another, flaws and all. A mutual realization and freedom in not having life perfectly put together.

    Navigating life is a treacherous task and if I was alone in my boat, I would have stopped pulling for shore years ago. But I have angels who have taken the helm, kept the rudder from splitting, filled the pails with water and thrown it overboard. Sometimes these angels are well known to my heart with years of investment in my life, but occasionally they pass through on a weekend, leaving behind a lasting impression. The way they looked into my eyes, or held my hand, or trusted me with their secret.

    To these women who fight to survive, I salute you.
    To the women who choose to cheer for women instead of bite or slander or belittle, I thank you.
    To women who have dared to love difficult people and not given up or given in, I see you.
    To the women who choose to rebel against the ideal of perfection but choose honesty and transparency and freedom, I congratulate you.
    To the women who are wounded and wandering, you’re not alone.

    You’re not alone.

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      HOMESCHOOL | animal keeping

      Charlotte Mason was full of wisdom when it came to rearing, disciplining and educating children. One of her well known philosophies which helped shape my own children’s educations has been that they need three things:

      • Something to do
      • Something to think about
      • Something to love

      I can’t say that I’m an animal lover. I didn’t grow up in a home with animals besides a few short-lived goldfish. As an adult I’m still a bit skittish around strange dogs and large animals like horses and cows. But I knew I didn’t want my children to grow up afraid.

      I believe that giving our children the opportunity to care for animals is a wonderful learning experience. First, it teaches responsibility. Feeding the cat, walking the dog and cleaning out the bunny hutch is not necessarily fun, but it is still necessary. There’s a sense of achievement when these tasks are completed.

      Learning to care for and love another living thing teaches empathy. We’ve had many discussions about how it would feel if I forgot to give the kids food and water for a few days? Obviously, it would be terrible. Wouldn’t it be the same for our animals if we forgot to care for and provide for them?

      Pets become our friends and sometimes our confidants. They comfort us and give us companionship. Having an animal we love can help fend off feelings of loneliness and sadness. I know our dog Frank is always around to lean on my leg and look lovingly into my eyes. He’s always up for a walk or physical touch. He is endlessly entertaining to our family and many of our morning conversations revolve around the dialogue we imagine he is having about us in his head.

      We’ve had times in which we’ve lost a few pets- beloved chickens, kittens, and a hamster. Although the grieving process hurts and is different for each child, it also opens up conversations about feelings and loss- something we as parents can not always protect our children from as much as we would like to. Learning to deal with the loss of a pet is a valuable life lesson which will equip them as they grow older and experience significant disappointments and loss.

      I never chose to have animals based on health benefits, but studies show that kids with animals in the home have fewer allergies, less anxiety, and lower blood pressure.

      We got our dog Frank in 2010. He was a few months old and we were determined he would be an outside animal. Maggie had been asking for a dog for a few years and it was with the understanding that she would be the sole caretaker that we finally agreed to get Frank. Maggie was eight years old. I don’t know that eight is a magical age for getting a pet, but it worked for our family. She was old enough to understand that feeding, watering and cleaning up after Frank was her job. She was able to communicate when the dog food supply was running low and able to put him on a leash and walk him up and down our neighborhood street. She read books about dog training and made arrangements for his care if she was away from home.

      From the beginning, I was very firm in my commitment to being hands off with animal care. Nine years later, I still have never fed, watered or picked up the yard after the animals. I may remind the kids from time to time that it’s been a while since Frank has had a bath or the chicken coop has been cleaned out. The kids understand that I am not responsible for the animals and that if they do not properly care for the pets, we will swiftly find a loving home for them. This strategy has worked well for our family and relieved me from an extra unnecessary burden of work of which my children are fully capable of taking ownership. And because they have proved over the years that they are responsible and kind to our animal family, I am more willing to consider expanding the menagerie when asked.

      Because we have so many pets now, our chore charts includes the various responsibilities and these jobs rotate about once a quarter. Poop pick up happens three times a week, chicken coop clean out happens every weekend. Daily watering and feeding is spread out between all three kids unless a particular animal is owned by a child. For example, Poppy purchased Winston the goat with her own money and pays for his food and vet visits. She is basically his mama and would not consider passing off the chore to a sibling of caring for Winston.

      Is my house a bit messier than it would be if we were without animals? yes
      Has owning the animals been worth the mess? 100% yes

      Our lives have enriched by owning pets. If you’re considering owning a pet, I suggest researching options and having an open dialogue about what caring for another living thing entails. Talk with your child about what you expect from them if you agree to adopt a pet. I’ve even had friends ask their children to research pet options and submit persuasive essays on pet ownership. ha! Allowing your child the opportunity to love and care for an animal is so special.

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        book club

        Years and years ago I met a friend who was a fellow bookworm.

        We were instantly friends.

        We decided that we would start a book club, read only classics, and invite friends.

        That was in 2010.

        We’ve been meeting the first Monday of each month ever since.

        The books we’ve read in no particular order:

        1. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
        2. The Crucible by Arthur Miller
        3. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
        4. Portrait of a Lady by Henry James
        5. Watership Down by Richard Adams
        6. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
        7. Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens
        8. Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
        9. Strong Poison by Dorothy Sayers
        10. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley
        11. The Road Back to You by Ian Morgon Cron
        12. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte
        13. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
        14. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
        15. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
        16. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
        17. Anthem by Ayn Rand
        18. Kristen Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset
        19. The Summer of Monkeys by Wilson Rawls
        20. The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
        21. 21 Balloons by William Pene du Bois
        22. The Boy Tales of Childhood by Roald Dahl
        23. Persuasion by Jane Austen
        24. Lady Susan by Jane Austen
        25. Miss Buncle’s Book by D.E. Stevenson
        26. 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff
        27. The Constitution
        28. The Blue Castle by Lucy Maud Montgomery
        29. Aunt Crete’s Emancipation by Grace Livingston Hill
        30. The Long Fatal Love Chase by Louisa May Alcott
        31. O Pioneers by Willa Cather
        32. 1984 by George Orwell
        33. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer
        34. Silas Marner by George Eliot
        35. My Man Jeeves  P.G. Wodehouse
        36. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
        37. Missing Christmas by John Grisham
        38. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
        39. Sherlock Holmes Adventure of the Speckled Band by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
        40. The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
        41. The River’s End by James Oliver Curwood
        42. A Girl of Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter
        43. The Keeper of the Bees by Gene Stratton-Porter
        44. Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
        45. My Antonia by Willa Cather
        46. The Scarlett Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
        47. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
        48. Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
        49. Old Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott
        50. Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton
        51. Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
        52. Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
        53. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
        54. Letters to Father Christmas by J.R.R. Tolkien
        55. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight by Pearl Poet
        56. Gift of the Magi by O. Henry
        57. Harvey by Mary Chase
        58. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
        59. Jane of Lantern Hill by Lucy Maud Montgomery
        60. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
        61. Emily of New Moon by Lucy Maud Montgomery
        62. Napoleon of Notting Hill by G.K. Chesterton
        63. The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan
        64. The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare
        65. Country of the Blind by H. G. Wells

        Assorted Poetry

         

        Our book club has become such an important part of my month. Women have come and gone, but there’s a core group who have stuck around. We’ve celebrated births, prayed for parents and cancer scares, shared opinions and sometimes disagreed. But what a gift to meet together and talk literature and ideas.

        What makes a hero admirable?

        What is courage? beauty? truth?

        I’m so thankful for these women and all the years of sharing delicious food and thoughtful conversations.

        To be honest, when we started, our children were much younger and the motivation for reading classics was to stay ahead of our children and their curriculum. But the benefits have far exceeded our initial goal. I’ve enriched my life and taken a hand in redeeming my own education. I’ve made good friends. I’ve been able to have relevant conversations with other well read and educated adults and with my own kids and their peers. I’ve had good cries over beautiful stories and become an avid reader.

        Although our goal is to read classics, about once a year we go off road into the world of contemporary literature and read books I wouldn’t otherwise have picked up. I might indulge in a book solely based on the gorgeous cover or because it’s a best-seller. Summers are typically hit or miss. Christmas season always means reading and sharing poetry. November’s book club is always a potluck and always at my house.

        Have a book club? What do you read? How often do you meet?

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          Motherhood | Lauren + the girls

          “The homemaker has the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose only – and that is to support the ultimate career. ”

          C. S. Lewis

          My friend Lauren. I don’t even know where to start.

          We met nine years ago when our dog escaped our yard, as often happens when you have little children practicing responsibility with an animal. She was gracious. She was friendly. She was in a hurry.

          She and her husband and their dog, Lucy, had moved in directly across the street from us just two months after we moved in to our house. We continued to run into each other here and there over the next few weeks.

          About the same time I partnered with a friend to begin hosting a book club. November 2010 was our first meeting and Megan and I were trying to recruit as many people as possible. I threw the invite to Lauren and she accepted.

          Our book club was discussing Sanditon, Jane Austen’s last book. About half way through the evening, my house literally caught fire. All the friends went in to high gear, hauling out my kids, pets, photographs, and computer. I hardly knew some of these women, but there they were, running through my house grabbing anything they thought might be sentimental.

          The fire department showed up and went to work. After I’d run back in for a few important things- like my cowboy boots and charm bracelets- I stepped out onto the sidewalk where all my new friends waited. Instantly Lauren had her arms around me, pulling me so tight. I don’t remember much more than how much I needed that hug and how loved I felt by someone I barely knew.

          That hug.

          Since that night, we’ve shared countless cups of coffee and meals, trained for a 5K, I’ve seen her birth two beautiful babies, she’s loved my children like they are her family. We’ve waited at a Starbuck most of a night, running from security to get in line for a golden ticket, shared clothes and cups of sugar, and I’ve told her my secrets and wounds and joys. We can talk about anything- marriage, faith, parenting.

          She never looks away when I tell her the hard things.

          Lauren is one of the most beautiful women I know. She’s loyal and thoughtful. She’s the friend that shows up before a family road trip with a gift bag of favorite goodies. She bakes homemade mac and cheese for me when I have surgery and lets me use her bathroom and guest bedroom when remodeling projects get out of hand.

          Her girls have no idea how lucky they are to have her as their momma. She gives so much thought to mothering them well, disciplining with love and mercy.

          I’ve always thought Lauren beautiful. Stunning really. Her beauty is the kind that radiates out…

          I want to be more like Lauren I grow up. I thank God for giving me a bonus sister.

          This glorious portrait session happened close to sunset earlier in the Fall. I love photographing mamas with their babies, and it’s especially sweet when I know the mama well.

          Thank you Lauren. I love you.

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            Sabbath- part 2

            He must say farewell to manual work and learn to understand that the world has already been created and will survive without the help of man. Six days a week we wrestle with the world, wringing profit from the earth; on the Sabbath we especially care for the seed of eternity planted in the soul. The world has our hands, but our soul belongs to someone Else. Six days a week we try to dominate the world, on the seventh day we try to dominate the self.

            Heschel

            It’s Thursday evening and I’m already looking forward to sunset tomorrow evening. I spent part of my day prepping food for Saturday and doing a few extra tidying chores so tomorrow feels a bit less rushed.

            Celebrating Sabbath has been nourishing and settling, pulling our family into a rhythm we’ve not experienced before. Often times one of the kids will say about mid-week, “I can’t wait for Sabbath!” and I regularly find myself with the same thought, the same longing.

            The Sabbath is a day for the sake of life.

            The Sabbath is not for the sake of the weekdays, the weekdays are for the sake of the Sabbath. It is not an interlude but the climax of living.

            Heschel

            When I first decided to observe Sabbath, I made a few decisions which helped with boundaries:

            • We would not spend money.
            • We would spend time in God’s word.
            • We would reserve the day for our family, not participating in sports, parties or other activities away from home.
            • We would spend the 24 hours without screens.
            • We would try our best to be loving and kind, full of grace towards one another, not kindling anger or bitterness.

            Here’s what preparing for Sabbath looks like in my house:

            Thursday and Friday I prepare food for Friday evening meal and all Saturday meals. These meals are occasionally elaborate, but typically they are easily thrown together and require little from me. Saturday’s breakfast menu may include an egg casserole, granola and fresh fruit, or muffins. Lunch is usually a variety of salads- chicken, egg, tuna, all prepped and ready to serve. I’ll have chopped veggies and dip, crackers and cheese, or a variety of deli meats and bread for sandwiches. The evening meal may be leftovers from Friday evening or an already prepared dish or soup. I try to make a special desert for us to enjoy over the weekend.

            Yes, this requires a lot of planning and preparation, but I’ve come to consider it a joy and blessing. I am serving my family and my Father AND allowing myself to rest.

            As Friday evening sunset approaches, I give the house a quick pick up, make sure the kitchen and my bedroom are in order, and finish up dinner. I always try to hop in the shower to refresh myself after a rushed day of preparation. Then, as the sun sinks on the horizon, we greet the Sabbath day with the lighting of candles, prayer and song and spend the evening lingering over dinner, visiting with one another, and sometimes playing games.

            Honestly, I’m pretty worn out by Friday night and bed calls early.

            I love Saturday mornings knowing that I have a day ahead of me that nothing is required but to be still and know the Father. I consciously invite His shalom into our home. In the Bible, the word shalom is most commonly used to refer to a state of affairs- one of well being, tranquility, prosperity, and security, circumstances unblemished by any sort of defect. Shalom is a blessing, a manifestation of divine grace. I also take time to read the Torah portion for the week and discuss it with any of the kids who settle in to bed with me.

            Sabbath is a day of quiet, of study, and of thanksgiving. We may wander the neighborhood on a family walk. I sometimes play in the garden. If I feel like resting, I rest.

            TRADITIONAL AFTERNOON SABBATH PRAYER

            Beauty of grandeur, a crown of victory, a day of rest and holiness… a rest in love and generosity, a true and genuine rest, a rest that leads to peace and serenity, a tranquility and security, a perfect rest with which Thou art pleased.

            A friend recently said that, “Sabbath has taught me that where there is a law or commandment there is blessing.  I no longer see the law as a burden but as a safe-haven.” I have to agree. A few years ago, when I first began studying the Torah, I felt a bit overwhelmed and discouraged. So many rules. So many things to learn and remember. How would I possibly be able to set aside 24 hours to give to the Father? We are a busy family with many obligations and invitations to juggle. After six days of work we needed the seventh to catch up.

            But I was wrong.

            The seventh day is the armistice in man’s cruel struggle for existence, a truce in all conflicts, personal and social, peace between man and man, man and nature, peace within a man; a day in which handling money is a desecration, on which man avows his independence of that which is the world’s chief idol.

            The seventh day is the exodus from tension, the liberation of man from his own muddiness, the installation of a man as a sovereign in the world of time.

            In the tempestuous ocean of time and toil there are islands of stillness where man may enter a harbor and reclaim his dignity. The island is the seventh day, the Sabbath, a day of detachment from things, instruments and practical affairs as well as attachment to the Spirit.

            Heschel

            The same friend said something that I’ve thought about again and again. “My experience has been that there IS something supernatural about rest on Sabbath.  For me, Shabbat comes with a sense of being covered, as though Adonai has stopped the world for His Sabbath-keepers to rest without falling behind.” Which truly is what it feels like to me as well. It’s been my experience over the last year that I am more refreshed, more capable, more disciplined, and more energetic because of my day of rest.

            When I began to consider keeping the Sabbath, I realized it would require a huge mind and heart shift, as well as a practical shift in our calendar. Little by little we stopped obligating ourselves to sports or clubs or parties that were held on Saturdays. I stopped offering Saturdays as available for portraits sessions. Did we occasionally feel left out? yes. But the benefits of Sabbath keeping far outweigh the fleeting delight of a game or event.

            I realize that Sabbath observance is counter cultural. I know it can incite a number of difficulties and even ridicule or judgement. But I also call to mind the biblical instruction found in Romans 12:2: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Also “The Israelite people shall keep the Sabbath, observing the Sabbath throughout the ages as a covenant for all time: it shall be a sign for all time between Me and the people of Israel” (Exodus 31:16-17). Sabbath keeping is not only beneficial for renewing our mind, body, and spirit, but is a sign of the covenant I’ve made with Adonai, my Creator and Father. What a good and perfect gift is His Sabbath! So when faced with a difficult decision to participate in an event on Sabbath, remembering these scriptures helps me find peace in declining. What I see as God’s will trumps the worldly invitation. The fruits of keeping the Sabbath holy are abundant.

            Traditional Sabbath prayer found in Heschel’s book on the Sabbath: “Embrace us with a tent of Thy peace.”  

            I love this imagery.

            Do you observe Sabbath?

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              Sabbath- What is it?


              Then Jesus said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” Mark 2:27 (NIV)

              What is Sabbath?

              Sabbath is defined as a day of religious observance and abstinence from work, kept by Jews from Friday evening to Saturday evening, and by most Christians on Sunday.

              I’d never considered keeping a Sabbath until recently, partly because I was exhausted, over scheduled, and needing to carve out a time for our family that was sacred. But as I began studying the Scriptures about Sabbath I became more convinced that it is something I should be observing as part of living in covenant with the Father.

              From the beginning, God set aside the seventh day as holy. In fact, I’ve heard it said that the only time in Genesis that God names something as “holy” is after creating the seventh day in which he rested.

              Genesis 2:1-3 (NIV)

              Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating he had done.

              The Father gave us an example of resting from work on the seventh day.

              Fast forward to Exodus when God is explaining his expectations of his covenant with the Israelite people.

              Exodus 31:12-18 (NIV)

              Then the Lord said to Moses,”Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.

              ‘Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it must be put to death, whoever does any work on that day must be cut off from his people. For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day must be put to death. The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever, for in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he abstained from work and rested.'”

              When the Lord finished speaking to Moses on Mount Sinai, he gave him the two tablets of the Testimony, the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God.

              This is one of many instances that the Lord God explains the Sabbath to his people. In the King James version, verse 16 says, “the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant.” And in verse 17, “It is a sign between me and the children of Israel forever.”

              From the tone this scripture passage, it’s clear that God the Father holds the Sabbath day above other days and the consequences of not honoring what he has named as holy are severe. This is also an indication to take the instruction seriously. I mean, keeping the Sabbath is sandwiched between honoring your father and mother and do not murder… it’s part of the ten commandments. It’s pretty clear to me that He intended the day to look different than the other six days, days which were appointed for work. I doubt very much that the Israelites ignored the Sabbath or tried to justify doing work on the Sabbath.

              HOLY- dedicated or consecrated to God or a religious purpose; sacred; set apart

              The modern day church has said that the first day of the week, Sunday, is the new Sabbath, because Jesus was raised on the first day of the week. MEN have named Sunday as “sabbath” and have called it holy. This switch is not found anywhere in the bible. The decision to make Sunday the new sabbath dates back to the Nicene Council in 325 AD. For more on the history of the change from Saturday to Sunday, I recommend this interesting article.

              I get hung up on reconciling how it is that a group of men, 300 years after the death of Jesus, decided to change what God named as his Sabbath. I believe scripture teaches that only God can name something as holy and what He calls holy, man can not call unholy.

              I grew up going to church on Sundays, days which were filled with services, luncheons, youth retreats, volunteer meetings, and outreach to the community. Most Sundays we ate our lunch or dinner out between obligations and watched ballgames or movies on slower Sunday afternoons. The church’s definition of sabbath looks very different from God’s, and has little to do with rest, something about which He does not mince words.

              Covenant- an agreement which brings about a relationship of commitment between God and his people. 

              The church often mentions God’s covenants with his people. From a child I was reminded by each rainbow sighting that God made a covenant with Noah that He would never again flood the earth. We all know that story. I believe this covenant is true and still stands. But as for some of the other covenants mentioned in the Old Testament with Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Moses, we have a tendency to set those aside, forget about them of just not believe them.

              Upon closer study, the covenant that God made with his Israelite people in Exodus 19, “If you obey my commandments, you will be my people” sounds like another one of those covenants which still applies to us today. Again and again, God says to Moses, tell the people these instructions stand FOREVER. And if I consider myself as grafted in (Romans 11) to God’s chosen people, the Israelites, might I also consider myself as part of this covenant He made with the Israelites which stands forever?

              When is FOREVER, not forever with God? We stand on a lot of his other promises which are said to stand forever, but why is this covenant an exception?

              Why did God make this covenant with his people, the Israelites? The instructions given by God were to bless his people, keep them safe, and transform them. The Israelites had just been delivered from a pagan society, full of false gods and idolatry, sexual perversion and abuse. In order for God to dwell among his people, He decided to lay down a framework explaining how they were to love Him and love one another… maybe something similar to how we as parents lay down the rules of the house for our children in order that we may live together in peace.

              So all of this information may be interesting, but does this really apply to us, the New Testament believers? There are some who teach that there was a problem with the old covenant and a new and improved covenant had to be created. Is that true? If the scriptures say that the covenant is perfect, what was the problem with the covenant? I think these are valid questions which need to be answered and not just glossed over. Do the sincere and resulting answers from scripture study make logical sense? I’m currently studying to answer these questions myself. But as I stated above, if I am grafted in to God’s chosen people, shouldn’t I consider observing the covenant, particularly the keeping of the Sabbath?

              According to my Strong’s Concordance, the Sabbath is mentioned 60 times in the New Testament. Jesus our Messiah, after whom we are to model our lives, faithfully observed the Sabbath and the feasts. His disciples observed the Sabbath before and after his resurrection. This again is evidence that we should at least consider keeping the Sabbath holy if our perfect Savior and his closest followers kept the Sabbath holy.

              For more information about the New Testament references to Sabbath, here’s another interesting article to consider reading.

              I’ll close with saying, keeping the Sabbath has been a gift. I better understand Jesus’ teaching in Mark 2:27 that the Sabbath was given to us as a time and space to be renewed, to lay down burdens of the mind and spirit and commune with the Creator who loved us enough to carve out a day for us to rest and be reminded of our everlasting covenant.

              We often think that earth is our mother, that time is money and profit our mate. The seventh day is a reminder that God is our father, that time is life and the Spirit our mate.

              Just as the physical world does not owe its existence to the power of man- it is simply there- so does the Spirit not owe its existence to the mind of man. The Sabbath is not holy by the grace of man. It was God who sanctified the seventh day.

              Heschel

              SABBATH PRAYER: May Thy children realize and understand that their rest comes from Thee, and that rest means to sanctify Thy name.

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              • JoannaSo clearly stated! I appreciate you developing and organizing your thoughts on this topic, leaning on Scripture as your sole authority, for the edification of many. ReplyCancel

              • Marla BenderOh!  This is excellent.  I’d like to share it.   ReplyCancel

              amy teague

              918.619.2646

               

              Tulsa, Oklahoma