Sunday, December 6, 2015

Holy of Holies

"Every life that would be strong must have its Holy of Holies into which only God enters..." ~Streams in the Desert, December 4th. 

This is our "holy of holies", the village of Svete Nedjelja (which means 'holy Sunday') on the island of Hvar in Croatia.

In all the times I've been here I've never seen it so shockingly vibrant in color!

Little did I know that they won't prune the vineyard until the vines are bare. Which means a feast for the eyes as the leaves display their brilliant orange, red, yellow and gold hues.

We took a walk, that turned into a hike, up the mountain to see all the vineyards in their finery. If you know me, you know I'm an "exclaimer" who can't hold back comments of joy and delight. Good thing Dave doesn't mind my constant exclamations! I couldn't hold back if I wanted to as we walked up and down through God's ultimate creation of beauty, which even included some lavender still in bloom!

Up and down we hiked, soaking in the beauty of what God created here.

Kaylee was a good sport at hiking, though had to be carried up the steepest parts.

Coming to a lookout point high above the coastline, the sense of wonder over this view definitely made me thankful for this 'holy of holies' place in our lives, a place to reflect, renew and be refreshed.

And I'm thankful for this time Dave has to pull away and get perspective.

I don't say this often, but the privilege of leadership comes with a high cost. Dave loves his people, the JV team, the people of the nations we serve, and many far and wide that we love. He wouldn't lead any other life than the one God's called him to.

In doing so, as he gives tirelessly and without thought of himself, he does wear out, though he doesn't like to admit it! It's actually hard on him to "get away", as he so loves what he gets to do and the people he gets to do it with.

But a few of us in his life encourage him to take periodic times away to be refueled. He gains much replenishment from the Lord when he does.

After all, even Jesus stole away for his alone time with his Father.

So we are here, enjoying the Lord, each other and the magnificent place in this part of the world that He created.

"One of the blessings of the old-time Sabbath was its calm, its restfulness, it's holy peace. There is a strange strength conceived in solitude.

Crows go in flocks and wolves in packs, but the lion and the eagle are solitaires.

Strength is not in bluster and noise. Strength is in quietness." ~Streams in the Desert