Last night we tried out our new Flame Genie firepit. Starting the fire was easy and it worked as advertised. The wood pellets were easy to start and the fire was smoke-free and did not emit any sparks. The cost of the pellets is about the same as the cost of firewood for a conventional firepit and is easily stored and transported.

Yesterday was an excellent day of rest and Linda finally got to roast marshmallows after we ate around the fire. We wandered the park with Little Man, looking over the other campsites and sharing with people. Each conversation brings new enlightenment to our journey with Jesus and each site has a little something new that we notice. We get ideas for how to improve our lives both spiritually and physically as we mesh with others.

During this time in our lives, we need to remember that we are not bodies who happen have souls, we are souls temporarily housed in our bodies. It is our soul that will live on long after these bodies are dead and buried. So, worry not about your physical condition but be keenly aware of your spiritual health. Take heed of your soul, nourish it with God’s Word and prepare it for eternity.

When we leave a campground, we are always prompted to evaluate our stay in an online survey. This survey normally us to rate the campground appearance, the amenities, the campsite and the attitude of the staff on a scale of 1 to 5. When we first started camping, we used these reviews to decide on campgrounds to use.

Our attitude about reviews has changed. Sometimes you go into a campground with a mediocre review and have a wonderful experience and then you go into a campground with marvelous reviews and absolutely hate it. Are the reviewers wrong? During the time they were there, the weather, the fellow campers and a myriad of other things, even their own expectations influenced their review. None of that will apply when we get there.

What will apply to our stay is our attitude, how we interact with the other campers, the staff and the circumstances of our stay. These are all things controlled by us, not the campground. We have discovered this simple truth. Our camping experience is greatly enhanced when we endeavor to let the light of the Lord shine through us. Even in campgrounds, as in all facets of life, that have problems, it is our attitude that determines the quality of our stay.

Last night two separate, strong thunder storms came through our campground and woke both of us up with all the sound and fury that these events of nature can bring. We were safe, warm and dry in our camper able to roll over and go back to sleep knowing we would have a good meal in the morning.

As I am writing this, so many things come to mind that I am thankful for. A mobile place to live that is safe, warm and dry, good doctors and access to proper medications, a venue where I can speak about God and find opportunities to serve Him by serving others, the love of a good woman and the privilege of loving her back and so many other things.

I am most thankful for a loving God made manifest through His Son Jesus Christ Who came to earth, lived and suffered as a man without sin, died on the cross to cover our sins, was buried and rose on the third day. Even now He sits at the right hand of the Father and claims me as His own. My only part in my salvation was to accept Jesus as the Son of God and to allow Him to plant the Holy Spirit in my heart where the work of my redemption will continue until I am gathered into the bosom of the Lord.

This world that we all live is a wondrous place, a magical kingdom just waiting to be explored. The beauty that the Lord created is filled with nuances that explode into our senses over and over again. Yes, the Creator made a perfect world, and yet He also created humankind, created us in His image, perfect in every way.

So, what happened? Adam and Eve disobeyed. And their disobedience was the first time that man sinned against God. Down through the ages man kept turning away from God and God continued to show grace and forgave us. And then Jesus came into the world.

God came down from heaven and took the form of His created to show us the way back. He did not remove sin from the world, He did not force man to obey. No, He showed us how to have lives that followed Him. Jesus led the way to bringing love, grace and mercy to a corrupt world.

What do we do with this gift? We follow the example of Jesus and pass the love, grace and mercy of the Lord to others. By example, by word, by actions, we share the love of Jesus and the world becomes less evil each time.

When we started this journey of discovery five years ago, we had no idea.  We could never have imagined the wonders that we would see, never understood the grace and mercy that would flow over us and through us to others.  We imagined a time of service, maybe a mission trip or two helping others.  Well, we did that and found that just once in a while was not enough.  A hunger to share Jesus took root and spread in our souls.

As we move through this country we are amazed by the number of people we speak to, the opportunities for sharing that arise.  Although we do periodically volunteer on NOMADS projects, most of the places we go and people we see are not part of any script, there is no plan to evangelize, only the need to share.

The joy of sharing with new friends, the peace that comes from helping others fills our hearts and can fill yours as well.  We implore you to start your own journey with the Lord.  Immerse yourselves in God’s Word.  Seek Him with your entire being and listen to and follow Him.

Even as we travel this country, wandering from place to place and seeing the sights and the people, we know that the wandering will someday end, that our world (which has been limited only by our desire to see new things) will become smaller… or will it? As we have journeyed from place to place, we have grown in faith separately and as a couple. Our trek through this part of our lives has enriched us with new perspectives, given us new eyes with which to see God’s children and humbled us.

As long as we keep our hearts open, our minds vigilant and our spirits ready, our world will never shrink but continue to expand as we draw nearer to God’s heavenly realm. We thank the Lord that our travels are not done, that He has more for us see and more people for us to meet. We are content to be in His will and pray that we will always be so.

There is no better place to be than in the will of the Lord and there is only one way to get there. That way runs right through Jesus Christ. Seek Him as He seeks you.

>Last night I tossed and turned and slept poorly. This morning as I tried to understand what was disturbing my sleep, I pricked my finger to check my sugar. The results showed elevated levels of sugar in my blood. Not sure why. Maybe extra stress, poor diet yesterday, late supper, lack of sleep. Whatever the cause, I need to change something to keep the count at an acceptable level.

Although diabetes is a tricky problem it is easy compared with the troubles that so many people go through. Yes, I should be more careful about my diet and I certainly need more exercise. However, with the right regimen and a minimum of medication I can still lead a normal life. There are many who have medical issues that limit their activities, that prevent them from participating fully in the lives of those around them.

As their family and friends, it becomes our responsibility to be as inclusive as their medical conditions will allow. It is truly amazing what even a small gesture can mean to those that have been forced to life’s sidelines. What they need is friendship not pity, compassion not indifference. Christian love not Christian charity. Look around you. There are more people with special needs that you realize, right in front of you.

Luke 2:40 And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.

When we are young we are gaining physical size, agility and strength, we are learning about our bodies and what our capabilities are. During this time, we are also growing mentally, becoming capable adults able to make our own decisions about life. This is also the time when we should be growing spiritually, learning about the God of our fathers. This does not always happen. Sometimes, the traditions of faith, the sense of wonder, the simple reliance on the Lord remains hidden in the parents.

The children never see the faith of their ancestors and never have the chance to grow spiritually. These are the true lost souls of our world, they have seen our faith up close and intimately from a twisted perspective that we ingrained in them. It then becomes our responsibility to show, by our actions, what true faith is.

Do not judge others by your upbringing, do not condemn by your past and do not judge by your standards, they are faulty. There is only one standard that matters, one Judge who’s opinion counts. Jesus Christ is Lord of all, speak His Holy Name to your mess and He will repair your mistakes and heal your heartache.

The recovery time was longer than usual. We arrived on Monday and did laundry and went to the pool on Wednesday and we are able to go to Atlantic City today (Sunday). When we are in the recuperating mode there are short walks around the campground and time spent sitting outside. Fire pits are becoming a nice part of our evenings. The only downside is having to buy firewood at each campground and leave the unused because we are not supposed to carry wood from state to state.

To answer the firewood problem, we have ordered a fire pit that uses wood pellets and will receive it at our next campground (Sea Pines RV Resort in Cape May Court House, NJ). Even when the temps are in the 70’s a campfire is nice (roasted marshmallows – MMMM). And when we are in New England in the fall…

I know we keep talking about our travels, the sights we see and the people we meet and sometimes it feels like we are ‘just showing off’. Really, we aren’t. We want the world to know the love of the Lord, the many ways that He blesses us. We do this so others can realize that they, too, have His blessings in their lives. Probably not the same blessings because He does for each what is best for them.

When you look at those around you, remember that they, too, are part of God’s creation made in His image. Even if you cannot see any good, even if their appearance and actions are abhorrent, they are still of the Lord, even though they may appear (or in fact be) lost. Our own path is tough enough for us to discern so we probably should not try to understand someone else’s path.

All too often we try to measure our faithfulness against what we perceive to be the faithfulness of others. We judge our performance against the performance of others, not remembering that our path is not their path, our relationship with the Father is not like their relationship with the Father. We have all been given choices on our journey to the Lord and the ability to make those choices, either with God’s approval or against His will.

We are all doing the best that we can and that is all anyone can ask. So, be very careful about judging others (Luke_6:37 – Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven).

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