Recap and Reflections
The Fellows program has been the sweetest season of growth and learning and I am so sad that it has come to a close! Not only has it laid a strong foundation of biblical truth in my life, but it has also given me an opportunity to reconcile things I have learned throughout my Christian life with their biblical origins. I have been so impressed and in awe of the richness of our faith and the beauty it beholds throughout the Scriptures. One intended goal of this program is to know and understand God's word so that we can think God's thoughts after Him in every aspect of our lives. I have seen how this includes both how I do things and the value of thinking critically, particularly in regard to my vocation.
I am primarily a stay-at-home mom these days and this program could not have been more timely to help me prepare for this calling from God. For example, my two-year-old is drawn to technology, especially TV, and I have been wrestling with how to address this. If I wear the lenses of Scripture and truly hold to this idea of thinking God's thoughts after Him, how might I rightly think about technology, TV and movies? Should I let my two-year-old watch Disney movies, only educational shows, or nothing at all? We spent a lot of time learning about the doctrine of common grace and how the Christian should engage in culture. Am I to withdraw from culture and try and protect my child from culture or do I fully participate in it? We learned that in the beginning, God told Adam and Eve how to interpret His creation and what He had created. So, I can actually engage in age-appropriate cultural norms (TV, movies, etc.) with my daughters as opportunities to teach them how to interpret culture through the lenses of Scripture. In this, God’s common grace is put on display, and we are able to talk about how God truly created His creation prior to the fall.
At the beginning of the program we were given this quote which so eloquently sums up both the Fellows program and my closing remarks.
Because he is a Christian, he is human in the full true sense. He loves the flowers that grow at his feet and admires the stars that sparkle overhead. He does not disdain the arts, which are to him a precious gift from God. Nor does he belittle the sciences, for these, too, are a gift from the Father of lights. He believes that everything God has created is good and that, taken in thanksgiving, nothing is condemned. He labors not for success and doesn't work for wages, but he does what comes to hand, seeing, by means of God's commandments, though ignorant of what the future may bring. He does good works without thinking twice and bears fruit before he realizes it. He is like a flower that spreads its fragrance unawares. He is, in a word, a man of God, perfectly equipped to all good works. And while for him to live is Christ, in the end to die is gain.
Herman Bavinck, The Certainty of Faith
The impact the Fellows program has had and will continue to have on my life is enormous and will impact generations to come! I have a refreshed view of vocation and a new desire for God’s Word. To close, I wanted to share this quote by Martin Luther, "This life, therefore, is not righteousness but growth in righteousness, not health but healing, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not yet what we shall be but we are growing toward it. The process is not yet finished but it is going on. This is not the end but it is the road. All does not yet gleam in glory but all is being purified."
To everyone who has played a role in making Tampa Bay Fellows happen, thank you from the bottom of my heart!