Saturday, August 1, 2015

Considerations on the 2015 LER

Since beginning the formal home education of our children eight years ago, I am annually gifted with some amount of time for intentional reflection and the gleaning of knowledge.  The form of refreshing has varied from a solitary 24 hours on 130 acres in a tiny house located just off the Mohawk Trail to a spirited road trip with a friend to attend a weekend of workshops.  Four of these eight years though I have been exceptionally blessed to have my repose take place amongst friends and nature at the Living Education Retreat in Minnesota.   

The Living Education Retreat serves to charge my educational faith.  It has continually been a time of repentance as well as a time of great joy.  It is here the Lord speaks with intensity to my heart, asking if I myself am willing to set foot on the path of being who it is I want my children to be.  

The plenaries, workshops and conversations taking place here are unequivocally not "given in the form of 'Do' this and that, but rather as an invitation to 'Consider' this and that."  After all, Charlotte tells us, "action follows when we have thought duly."  

Though it is a time to be with like-minded Charlotte Mason educators, we are gloriously not all alike.  This is a time of building new relationships and deepening existing ones both with each other and in the knowledge of God, man and the universe. It is why --when asked for a quote to go with my biography-- Charlotte's words reverberated within me:

Once we see that we are dealing spirit with spirit with the friend at whose side we are sitting, with the people who attend to our needs, we shall be able to realize how incessant is the commerce between the divine Spirit and our human spirit.  It will be to us as when one stops one's talk and one's thoughts in the spring-time, to find the world full of bird-music unheard the instant before.  In like manner we shall learn to make pause in our thoughts, and shall hear in our intellectual perplexities, as well as in our moral, the clear, sweet, cheering and inspiring tones of our spiritual Guide.

Much of what we were asked to consider is exhilaratingly provocative and evoked Watchman Nee's assertion in "Twelve Baskets Full:"  

If God leads you to walk a way that you know, it will not benefit you as much as if He would lead you to take the way that you do not know. This forces you to have hundreds and thousands of conversations with Him, resulting in a journey that is an everlasting memorial between you and Him.

It is a pilgrim's progress, is it not? And I am relishing the resulting conversations with the Lord following my tranquil time on the shores of Lake Pepin at the Living Education Retreat.  


Nicole Handfield said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Richele said...

Nicole, thank you for the link. I have this hymnal that she uses and didn't even know the quote was in it! I'll be having a beautiful time listening to rladbsl as she has so many hymns that I sang when I was a young college-age person. Please make sure you listen to "Divine Romance" which she has posted. It's always had a special place in my heart and we sang it at a friends' wedding.

Nelleke Plouffe said...

That quote from Watchman Nee is one I hadn't encountered before. Thank you for that. Some year I hope I will manage to attend a retreat like the one you just did. What a wonderful opportunity!

Elena said...

Beautiful words Richele, I so enjoyed reading your post. Hugs, Elena

Nicole Handfield said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Autismland Penny said...

It was worth the conference to meet up with you again! I was so excited to go but over the moon when I saw you . What an amazing surprise! God truly worked on me that weekend. I came home a changed mama for sure.

amy in peru said...

ah. watchmen nee... so true.

kikikats said...

I am curious how things are going. I hope you'll return to blogging soon.

capitale du vietnam said...

good essay