ECCLESIOLOGICAL ETCHINGS February 18, 2023 I am currently out at Disciple Oaks Camp Ground, or what is often called Camp Gonzo (near Gonzales, TX), for a Disciples Men’s Retreat. Last night, a couple of the men started a big fire near the lake, and though a bit cool, the sky was clear and the stars were visible. It was really quite magnificent. Even though I will only be at the camp for 24 hours, there is something important about stepping away from the routine (and everything that comes with it). In Matthew 14:23, we find the words: "And after Jesus had dismissed the crowds, he went up the mountain by himself to pray." I have always found it interesting that Jesus got away, and I would even add that I think he ‘needed’ to get away. Some may consider that too human for someone like Jesus, but both the disciples and the crowd were draining on Jesus. Space is important—not only the beautiful space of the mountain but also the space Jesus created between himself and those who were irritating. Loving someone doesn’t mean we always want to be around them. Though I might act hurt when my wife says that she needs a little space, I fully understand. If I was living with me, I would need some space. It's okay to set boundaries and make space with family, friends, coworkers, or whoever.
O God, I hope to appreciate and enjoy others a bit more after I have taken a little break from them. Amen.