Greetings Friends! All is well for us here on the North Shore. We spent the 4th of July in Boston where we got to ride on the Swan Boats in the Public Gardens, a real treat for our son as we've been reading Robert McCloskey's Make Way For Ducklings with him a lot lately (the story takes place in the Public Gardens). The fireworks were incredible, we saw the Blue Man Group, the Boston Pops...who performed the 1812 Overture with canons and fireworks!...and I had the pleasure of seeing John Mellencamp. It was a pretty incredible Independence Day celebration. Thanks Boston!
We've been fully immersing ourselves in New England living as much as possible and here's some highlights: Fried Clams at their birthplace here in Ipswich, Sea Fishing and seeing the my friend's oldest son catch a little shark (a.k.a. Dogfish), Beaches-Beaches-Beaches, Chowdah, Walking the Freedom Trail in Boston on Independence Day, more Dunkin' Donuts per capita than Starbucks (for once!), walking along the Seashore in numerous historic little villages, a fun trolley ride through Boston, a Harbor Tour, "Ocean Boats" (as my son calls them) , Buffy the Buffalo at a local Farmstand, and most of all our wonderful friends whom we've had the pleasure and privilege of sharing their home with the last two weeks. They're a wonderful godly family, people who know how to enjoy life to the full and good friends. They're off to the Midwest for some family R&R and we sure miss them. May the Lord Jesus bless their rest, praise Him that we got to share their life for this special time.
So how's Church interning going? Very well. I've had more opportunities lately to delve into the pastoral side of ministry with hospital visits and pastoral meetings. Life is tough and this fallen world isn't fair and people are hurting. But I praise God that Jesus and His Church are the Hope of the World. This devotional from C.H. Spurgeon poetically sums up what I've seen and learned recently about being a minister of the Gospel. It's a little long and wordy but worth the read...
"Brethren, pray for us" ~ 1 Thess. 5:25
This morning in the year we reserved to refresh the reader's memory upon the subject of prayer for ministers, and we do most earnestly implore every Christian household to grant the frevent request of the text first uttered by an apostle and now repeated by us. Brethren, our work is Solemnly momentous, involving weal or woe to thousands; we treat with souls for God on eternal business, and our word is either a savour of life unto life, or of death unto to death, A very heavy responsibility rests upon us, and it will be no small mercy if at the last we be found clear of the blood of all men. As officers in Christ's army, we are the especial mark of the enmity of men and devils; they watch for our halting, and labour to take us by the heels. Our sacred calling involves us in temptations from which you are exempt, above all it too often draws us away from our personal enjoyment of the truth into a ministerial and official consideration of it. We meet with many knotty cases, and our wits are at a non plus; we observe very sad backslidings, and our hearts are wounded; we see millions perishing, and our spirits sink. We wish to profit you by our preaching; we desire to be blest to your children; we long to be useful both to saints and sinners; therefore dear friends, interecede for us with our God. Miserable men are we if we miss the aid of your prayers, but happy are we if we live in your supplications. You do not look to us but to our Master for spiritual blessings, and yet how many times has He those blessings through His ministers; ask then, again and again, that we may be the earthen vessels into which the Lord may put the treasure of the Gospel. We, the whole company of missionaries, ministers, city missionaries, and students, do in the name of Jesus beseech you "BRETHREN, PRAY FOR US."