Hi everyone! My name is LaJoie Ward, and I’m a Lamplighter Guild Alumna. I can’t tell you how extraordinary my time here has been already! It’s incredible that God has allowed me to come back to the beautiful Mohonk Mountain House for another visit! I am truly blessed beyond measure.
Well, Michael did a great job of telling about Monday’s events, so I’ll stick with what’s happened so far today. This morning as we met bright and early for morning devotions (the ONLY time I find 6:15 AM even slightly agreeable), Mr. Hamby felt God leading us to do things a little differently. Though unplanned, we traversed a steep mile-long hike to eagle point. The views along the way and at the top were breathtaking. We were even able to go out on a gazebo and gaze over the edge at a straight-down drop, hundreds of feet to the valley below!
Cathy Sara led one group of students in devotions, while Mark Hamby led another group a short distance away. This was a literal mountain-top experience. We studied a passage from 2 Peter 1 in which we are instructed to “choregos” or “add at our own expense” a list of godly qualities to our faith. God’s presence and his word touched us deeply as we gazed at his majestic creation and delved into the goodness and truth of his Word. We lost track of time, and some of us had to run back to the Mountain House to make it back in time for breakfast! Nevertheless, the experience we had on the mountain was unquestionably worth it.
After breakfast, Mr. Hamby taught from Leviticus, which is definitely not one of my most favorite books! However, through Mr. Hamby’s teaching, I saw how God can use even the parts of scripture that at first glance don’t seem interesting or helpful to create His beautiful poetry. It is only through the extraordinary imagery and metaphor of the passages about Old Testament sacrifices that we can understand the true meaning of our calling to be a fragrant offering and a living sacrifice unto our Lord. God truly IS the Master Author! The lesson ended with the exhortation to let our lives be an expression of the Gospel by knowing God intimately so that we can make him known. We must imitate Christ! But to do that, we must first know him.
In my first morning class, Kathy Buchanan walked us through the Pixar movie “Up” to show us step-by-step the various elements in the outline of a good script. As we went along, she also made connections to other stories, such as the Parable of the Prodigal Son, Fireproof, The Sound of Music, Finding Nemo, and Courageous to further illustrate the concepts to us. Her lesson was truly taught with excellence, and the hours went by like mere minutes! Oh, and I’m pretty sure those in Todd Busteed’s sound design class were having fun too, because I could hear them laughing through the wall!
I’m actually a few minutes late for Cathy Sara’s acting class, so I’m going to sign off and get back to the group. Yesterday was a blast, so I can’t wait to see what we’ll be doing today. Wish you all were here!
In the Excellence and Love of our Savior, LaJoie