S.O.S. – an explaination (and why I am taking my kids with me this time)

How often do we dole out “the spiritual” to our children with a careful and steady measure while holding back the sweetest, deepest, richest, most moving lessons and discoveries the LORD has generously given us.

Overwhelm them with the wonderful!

Don’t hold back the best from your children, though it brings you to speechless tears or to your knees in worship.  Share what the LORD has revealed to you about Himself and His Word.  You will not become a fool in their eyes; you will be showing them a glimpse of the vast and unsearchable “depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God”.  (see Romans 11:33-36; It takes my breathe away!)

message in a bottle

S.O.S. – “Seeking One Savior”

It’s like I’ve just pulled back into port from a voyage across the Mediterranean, Tyrrhenian, and Aegean Seas with the apostle Paul, the Holy Spirit, and eight amazing women.  I’ve been challenged, encouraged, and stretched beyond what I have previously experienced in preparing for and leading any other traditional Bible Study.

This entire journey with the apostle Paul began with my children asking a question in our study of Romans, and my becoming aware of how little I knew about Paul the man, despite having studied and lead others through most every one of his epistles.  I have walked and sailed many a mile with him and his friends, and they have become so dear to me!

Leading women’s Bible studies took a back burner a couple years ago to the more significant calling of this season of my life: teaching the Bible to my own children, not just a subject for home school but as my passion and mission, intentionally investing the time and single minded passion that I would devote to a study I’d lead for others.

I am still discipling and encouraging women, but for the few years I have with my kids in the home, others will receive the overflow of what gushes forth from my home, as opposed to my children receiving the trickle that is left from what I pour into the lives of those outside my home.  (As I mentioned in my manifesto, my whole-hearted devotion is to God Himself, and in this season of life, it would be disobedience to His clear directions to have His secondary calling on my life take a mental and emotional precedent over my ministry to love and encourage my husband and to teach and serve my children.)

So all the while that I was on this 9 month adventure with the Holy Spirit and Paul, and my kids and I were plodding along through the first 5 chapters of Romans, in the back of my mind was an anticipation of a summer adventure with my children through the life of Paul.  Now, all the prep work is done, and much of it tried out on a handful of fabulous female guinea-pigs; so I say, “Let the fun begin!”

Here’s my suggestion to you,

…regardless of whether you choose to use any of these S.O.S. ideas, fill up first and then pour what you discover over your children.

It is wonderful to learn with your children.  Our family tries to read the Bible through every year as a family.  We read and discuss with no prior preparation, but how much deeper is our slower and methodical study and memorization of a section of Romans that I have previously studied and taught!

My kids and I are about to study the life of Paul, but if that does not resonate with you, choose something else…

  • the timeline and travels of the Patriarchs
  • the long line of Kings of Israel and Judah (and then the prophets that spoke to them)
  • the life of Christ (Is there a better study?)
  • the attributes of God
  • character qualities

Dive in!  Go deep!  Study for yourself and teach your children!

Wondering where to begin?

Why not start with the last post?  Make yourself a “beach bag”, and call it whatever you want.  Then encourage your older children and help the little ones to make a “Spiritual Survival Kit” of their own.  Who wouldn’t love a special bag with a journal and fun supplies?  Who wouldn’t enjoy creating a private place, a cozy corner to be their deserted island, to call their own?

Be creative!  Don’t be legalistic!

You can inspire your kids to seek the LORD as they see you having fun seeking Him for yourself.

Making Your Spiritual “Survial Kit”

Island Castaway sos(S.O.S. Challenge #1)

   . . . – – – . . .  


“Save Our Souls”, “Save Our Ship”, “Sink or Swim”, “Save Our-Selves”?


Today, with this international signal of distress, I’m breaking blog-post silence, but personally, this season has been anything but “silent”.  The LORD has been speaking loud and clear with insight and creative inspiration for a recent spring retreat at the shore.

footprintsOur theme was “shipwrecked”; so with that in mind, I’d love to share with you a few highlights and challenges in the coming days.  If it has been a while since you’ve “come away” with the LORD for a “personal retreat” to pray and seek and rest, I think you’ll enjoy this.

If you have a trip to the shore planned for this summer or if you’d just like to have a themed prayer day with the LORD in the fall, take these S.O.S. Challenges as tools to launch your own special “get away” with your Savior.

If I could, I would whisk you away to a deserted island with the Lord, but for now, imagine yourself “ship-wrecked”.  Draw a mental circle around yourself wherever you are and know that the Holy Spirit is there with you.

Your First Challenge:  Prepare Your Bag (a spiritual survival kit)

Your first challenge is to prepare a bag, bucket, box, or basket for a portable quiet-time, an ever ready container of resources to use at the beach, in your room, on your deck, or in a quiet corner with an ocean or city view.

You can make it, buy it, decorate it…  be creative!  (If you chose to invite a friend to plan a personal retreat of her own, you could get together for a little fun and fellowship, a show and tell of sorts, to share what you chose to do with each of your challenges.)

Gather Your Tools

bag 3Begin filling your bag with supplies that you will use during your “seeking-time”.

  • Bible and journal
  • pens, highlighter, colored pencils
  • tape (I always carry tape, regular and double sides, for adding sentimental odds and ends to my journal:  leaves, pressed flowers, business cards, magazine clippings articles/pictures/words, seagull feathers, etc.)
  • paper clips, tags, 3×5 cards, small ruler, post-its…  (I even raided my neglected scrap-booking stash and gathered a few things to use.)

bag 2

I like to carry my tools in a heavy, clear, plastic zip bag (like those that bed sheets and shower curtains come in); so I can easily find a pen or paper clip but also to keep the sand off my tape!


Start Using Your Bag

beach bagEvery day, take your “beach bag” to a special, quiet place.  It could be a different place every day if you want!   Seek your Savior and jot down a few thoughts about what you read or did and what the LORD impressed upon your heart.   (You might want to start a new journal for this S.O.S. adventure.  I promise, you’ll have a lot of material, and what a wonderful time to start a clean notebook, at a change of season!)

Remember:  Be original.  Be creative.  Everything I post, is just a suggestion, an idea for you to run with and make your own; so, have fun with this challenge of “Seeking One Savior”!

For other challenges, check out the Personal Retreats tabs.  This challenge was taken from the Seeking One Savior retreat.