Emily Belle Freeman
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THIS IS MY JOY

AND MY GREAT REJOICING

If You Have Fallen Behind

James 1:1 - Peter 1:14

At first glance, and from far away it was just a tree.

It wasn't until I got closer that I noticed the thatching that had been carefully placed around the bottom, the rock pathway that led to an open doorway, the welcome sign set carefully at the threshold, the kids creating memories inside.

And there, just inside the welcoming doorway, was a simple bench, and an old antique chair with a padded cushion.

It was almost as if the tree offered a refuge ––a peaceable sanctuary.  And all were invited within...without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

As I walked away from the hidden wonderland carefully hidden there under the green leaved boughs I couldn't help but ponder my love of the scriptures.

...which, at first glance, are just words contained within hundreds of pages bound in leather.

It is as I get closer that I begin to notice the tender mercies, the testimonies like rocks along the way, the pathway to follow, the memories of God's hand recorded and preserved, and the people.  Oh, how I have come to love the people.

Carefully placed throughout we discover an invitation...come unto me, come follow me, come and see.

Welcoming.

It is when I pause in the midst of my day to sit on a simple bench, or in my favorite soft reading chair with a homemade throw waiting nearby, that I discover the refuge...the peaceable sanctuary there.

From far away I forget the blessings contained within.

I realize that I must get closer to discover the gifts hidden within the pages.  I must make time to explore.  The memories and lessons and wisdom won't come if I don't venture down the path.

Summer has been busy.  My routine has been interrupted.  I long for family scripture study at 9:30, and personal study time uninterrupted.  I don't know how your summer has been...but we have been playing catch up on a regular basis.

If you have fallen behind there is no need to worry.

In a week's time the school bell will ring, bringing back old habits, and order, and routine.

And there will be more time to open gilded pages on a more regular basis and we will discover again just what it is we love most about reading the words of the Lord.

"But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." James 3:17

Emily Freeman