3 Lessons From the Beach


What do you get when you mix a thirteen year old birthday party, 12 teenagers, a hot sunny Florida day, and the beach?

You get two sun burned exhausted parents and some treasured memories. My 2nd daughter turned 13 this past week and she wanted a beach party. We home school our girls so taking a Tuesday off to celebrate was no big deal. Fortunately most of her friends are out of school this week for Spring Break, so I piled 6 wound up teens in my Yukon and my wife loaded up the other 6 in hers and TO THE BEACH we headed. I had prepared my beach routine the night before, packing my IPod and a book that my wife has been begging me to read “Messy Spirituality”. We had a dear friend Kristin, join us, she was a mom of 3 from the party.

As the three of us adults settled in for the day, I noticed that Kristin pulled out a book too. Checking out the title, all I could make out was “Suffering” across the jacket cover. In my awkward way of making small talk I said something to the effect of “So, you reading some happy today?” For the next hour the three of us had an amazing, Holy Spirit filled conversation about the role of suffering in our lives. Could happy and suffering coexist in the same sentence? Fast forward to this morning’s reading in Revelation 7.

And God shall wipe away all tear, from their eyes;
That which is now the occasion of tears will cease, as the sin and corruptions of God’s people, which now are the cause of many tears. So will Satan’s temptations, the hiding of God’s face, and the various afflictions of this life. All will be made to cease; and in their place will be everlasting joy.

There is coming a day when we will be happy in being delivered from all sorrow or occasion of it. God shall wipe away all tears from our eyes. We all have had our share of sorrows and many tears, both upon the account of sin and affliction. But God himself, with his own gentle and gracious hand, will wipe those tears away, and they shall return no more for ever! John Wesley says “In this He deals with them as a tender father who finds his beloved child in tears, He comforts him, He wipes his eyes, and turns his sorrow into rejoicing. This should moderate the Christian’s suffering in his present state, and support him under all the troubles of it; for those that sow in tears shall reap in joy; and those that now go forth weeping, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again rejoicing, bringing their sheaves with them.”

I learned 2 lessons yesterday, actually 3:

1 – Twelve teenagers versus 3 adults is just unfair.

2 – Suffering is necessary but only temporal. I am one day closer to the day when all my tears will be wiped away.

3 – Be sure to apply lots of sun block before you jump into a one hour God discussion.

Advertisements

3 responses to this post.

  1. Wish I could have been at that party. We had around 4-6 inches of snow with blizzard warnings! I think my temporal suffering is to be in north-central IL! At least I hope it is temporal:) For some reason, God just won’t let us move to Florida. We have Pastor Neil from Zephyrhills (SP?) in revival with us this week. God has really been moving. I guess I can stand some snow and the cold when I get to be in the presence of God!

    I tell myself this but in the back of my mind I hear the counter arguement~but God is everywhere, why not commune with Him in sunny Florida?

  2. Hook – we are also Homeschoolers! It is a GREAT freedom to be able to take a day and go do something fun! My husband & I just got back from an “Eagle’s Wings” conference (we went with our Pastor Garrett & his wife Libby) in Atlanta, GA. One thing God has been speaking to us is, “this is the reason I’ve asked you to homeschool…to be free to go where I [God] tell you to go, when I tell you to go”. We have yet to know where/when/how, etc., but we are willing, available and getting ready.

    Libby – don’t worry, we’re not talking about MOVING.

  3. Hook – we are also Homeschoolers! It is a GREAT freedom to be able to take a day and go do something fun! My husband & I just got back from an “Eagle’s Wings” conference (we went with our Pastor Garrett & his wife Libby) in Atlanta, GA. One thing God has been speaking to us is, “this is the reason I’ve asked you to homeschool…to be free to go where I [God] tell you to go, when I tell you to go”. We have yet to know where/when/how, etc., but we are willing, available and getting ready.

    Libby – don’t worry, we’re not talking about MOVING.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: