Saturday, February 21, 2015

Men's Retreat at Restoration Farm



I planning a men's retreat weekend for Saturday, June 13th at Restoration Farm

So why focus on repentance?

Most of us when thinking of repenting have images of standing before a pastor who is larger than us or sitting in a booth with a priest sitting on the other side of the curtain. Either or both glaring at us with disapproval. But what I want to do is for us to look at it from God's perspective.

Let's answer these questions:

When one repents how is God viewing that person?

What is real repentance?

What does repenting look like?

Where do we have to repent?

What do we need to repent of?

I will try to keep each answer as brief as possible.

When one repents how is God viewing the person repenting?

Maybe what we should do is first answer the question of What Real Repentance is?
    
Acts 26:20New International Version (NIV)
20 First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and then to the Gentiles, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and demonstrate their repentance by their deeds.
So repentance is an act of turning back to God.

What is that we should turn from? We can answer that in just one little word, SIN. Sin is anything that turns us from God. It can be different for each person. During the weekend we will discuss some of the sins we could have in our lives.

So now we know that we are to repent from sin let's answer how God views us as we do this act.
 
I believe most people have an image of God as a judgmental and mean old man.

But what does the Bible say about what is going on when we repent?

Luke 15:7New International Version (NIV)
I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.

That makes me think that when we repent and turn back to God there is a party taking place with God hosting it. 

What does repenting look like?
People fall on their face before the Lord, they might cry or they might just sit n awe that our God wants to restore relationship with us. Repentance can take many forms but almost every time it involves a person having a broken heart from the way they have been living.

Where do we have to repent?
In simple terms "Before the Lord". There is no certain place that we have to confess our sins. There is no certain person or group of people we need to confess in front of. What we need to do is confess to our Father that we have strayed from Him.

What do we need to repent of?
We have already determined we need to repent of sin. What sin? Well it is different for each of us. Some of our sins are hidden and we do not even recognize them as sin. This is why I want to hold a weekend of Repentance. For some of us we need to have the Holy Spirit convict us of what we need to repent of.

During this weekend we will invite the Holy Spirit to come and convict us of our sins. 

John 16:8The Message (MSG)

8-11 “When he comes, he’ll expose the error of the godless world’s view of sin, righteousness, and judgment: He’ll show them that their refusal to believe in me is their basic sin; that righteousness comes from above, where I am with the Father, out of their sight and control; that judgment takes place as the ruler of this godless world is brought to trial and convicted.

I believe the men who attend this weekend event will go home changed men. They will be changed because they were willing to go before God and ask to be shown their sin and having been shown they knell before him asking for his forgiveness and blessing of strength to overcome.

Here is my vision for this weekend:

1. Arrive at the farm Saturday morning.
2. At 11am have a short meeting about the farm.
3. At noon have a meal.
4. After lunch begin the event with worship (15-20 minutes).
5. After worship have a short message. (15-20 minutes).
6. After the message men can partner up or go by themselves to various locations on the farm to sit and seek an encounter with the Holy Spirit and be convicted of their sin(s).
7. Come back together and discuss (those that are open to talking) our experiences.
8. Worship and ending message for the day. (30-40 minutes).
9. Free time
10. Evening meal and camp fire.

Sunday
8am Breakfast
9am Worship and short message
10am Another trip to the woods or other areas to encounter the Holy Spirit
11am End with a Blessing

Part 2
To understand why we need repentance I believe we need to have a proper definition of Repentance to begin with.

I hope to answer what repentance is and why we need to focus on it.

2 Corinthians 7: 9-11 yet now I am happy, not because you were made sorry (filled with sorrow), but because your sorrow led you to repentance. For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. See what this godly godly has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourself, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter.

W.E. Vine defines it as:
a. change of mind
b. involves both a turning from sin and a turning to God

Let's think of repentance as simply a change of mind which causes us to "turn from sin and turn to God." Which is preceded by sorrow and followed by a changed life.

Two types of  sorrow:
Worldly and godly

Worldly sorrow produces a selfish sorrow. It is one that is generated by "getting caught" or having been "made to look bad." In worldly sorrow one is more concerned about self.

Godly sorrow produces a sorrow directed at God. It is generated by conviction by the Holy Spirit. One is sorry because their actions are sins against a Holy God.

One is sorry because of the price God had to pay to have one's sin covered.

How many of us can actually say we have had a sorrowful repentance? I can honestly say I have but I am getting hints from the Holy Spirit that this weekend us just as much for me as any man that shows up.

Let me ask a few questions:
Can you look at your life and see signs that you have really had a "change of heart and mind?"
Can you honestly say you have made a decision to turn from sin and turn to God?

If you have not yet obeyed the gospel...you have not repented.
If you have become slack in your service...you are in need of repentance.

During this weekend we will review the above and then seek the Holy Spirit to convict us of the sin we have to repent of. We will be moved by the kindness and love of God to repent. We will then leave refreshed, reconciled and restored ready to guide men back home to realizing real repentance.

Note: W.E. Vine, was an English Biblical scholar, theologian, and writer, most famous for Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words

Monday, February 9, 2015

7 Springs Winery 6th Annual Chefs Challenge

On January 31st Restoration Farm was involved in the 6th Annual Chefs Challenge sponsored and held at 7 Springs Winery in Linn Creek, MO. The event is a benefit for the Lake YMCA located in Osage Beach, MO.

The challenge is a 3 round challenge with 4 chefs competing against each other in each round and then the winners of each round plus the winner of the People's Choice vote will compete in a final cook off.

The winner of the January 31st event was the Trophy Room at Old Kinderhook but Restoration Farm under the direction of Chef Charles took the People's Choice vote. Our daughter, Missy, and our G-Kids, Dakota, Cierra and Kai helped Kat serve the judges and the people who attended the event.
Kai is not pictured because he was off with my son, Julien, sampling the other chef's food.

We are honored to have had the opportunity to participate in the challenge and are hoping that our votes by the people who ate portions of the different chef's food will get us into the finals.

This event has motivated us to seek getting our kitchen approved for serving lunch and diner to private parties who visit the farm. Eating would be mainly outside at areas like the following.



The vegetables served would come from our garden and we would seek out local vendors for beef and chicken fed either organic feeds or allowed to graze and not fed any treated grains.

Come back after March 14th to see if we were able to compete in the finals.