When the new high school building was completed in the winter of 2019/2020, my big Christmas gift wish was a weather station to place on top of the building. My wife pulled through, and I have been collecting and analyzing weather data ever since. With a math/science teaching background, the weather numbers for our campus always interest me. Can you believe we have had over 10 inches of rain in since April 1st! Did you know our top wind gust so far in 2022 was 45.6 mph? And in the past 12 months, we have experienced temperatures (wind chill/heat index) spanning 108℉(13℉-121℉)!
In Romans chapter 2, Paul describes how many Gentiles who were not aware of God’s laws, still followed the guidelines of the law. He illustrates how every human has the knowledge of right and wrong through our “conscience” which is part of our created being. Our God-given “conscience” can confirm God’s just order when it leads us naturally to walk in His ways, even when we may not be explicitly aware of them.
But our “conscience” can also be diluted by the sinful nature that opposes His ways. It reminds me of how weather can so easily erode and damage something previously so healthy and vibrant. Whether too much rain, not enough rain, ice, hard freezes, wind, or heat, the natural patterns of weather constantly keep us on our toes. We are regularly responding and making adjustments due to the wacky weather that surprises us.
In the same way, our God-given “conscience” can quickly become damaged or polluted by the unholy things of this world. When our moral compass is off, it can lead us and those we love away from God’s good purposes. Paul later writes to the Romans how the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ has filled our lives with something greater and more supernatural than our conscience. His Holy Spirit. The indwelling of His Spirit in our lives is an even greater guide to help us not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit and God’s good purposes.
So the next time you experience extreme weather and its frustrating impacts on our lives, remind yourself of how the ways of the world can frustrate our conscience. Beware of trusting your own conscience, and be quick to pursue God’s perfect truths. Press in to His Word and fellowship with Him and other believers to realign the compass of our conscience with His Holy Spirit. His grace like rain will continue to bring new life to our hearts and minds through His Spirit!
My 2nd-grade year as a student was one of the most enjoyable years of my schooling. I was living in a small Oregon town called Camas Valley and I had one of my favorite teachers. Her name, ironically, was “Mrs. K.” She made me feel like I was the most valued student in her class (I assume she did that for all the students). She was always available for me to talk to before and after school. She would go out of the way to ensure that I had the best 2nd-grade year ever.
This Mother’s Day I will be sending“Mrs. K.” a Mother’s Day card. You guessed it! “Mrs. K”, my former 2nd-grade teacher, is my mom. For most of my life, I was blessed to spend time with my mom (and my dad) in our home and at school. The person I am today is very much a product of their direct and indirect influences on me as both parents and teachers.
In Hebrews Chapter 11, the author walks us through a list of men and women who demonstrated lives of faith. The author references Abraham’s wife, Sarah, the mother of Isaac, as a person who demonstrated faith. She conceived in her old age because she considered God, who had promised her a child in her old age, as faithful. Yet in Genesis 18 we read how she initially laughed to herself when she heard the promise. How encouraging to us as parents. Despite her humanness, Sarah's faith was an example to her family and to future generations!
Living a life of faith does not require constant perfection, just simple humility and devotion. As a child and a student, I’m sure I observed a few flaws in my mom at home and as my 2nd-grade teacher at school (and I’m sure she saw ten times as many in me). I also observed and still observe a consistent heart that desires to give glory to God and try to love others as He does. I can only hope that this original "Mrs. K" has rubbed off on the current Mr. and Mrs. K.
Sometimes I feel exhausted as a parent. Other times I rejoice in the immeasurable joy of parenting. My oldest child just turned 19. Our parenting has not ended, nor will it ever end. While my dad has since passed, my own relationship with my mother continues to enrich my life. As we celebrate the mothers in our lives, may we rejoice in our Lord Jesus Christ, who through faith, grants us access to these treasures today, and so many more to come.