My name is Melissa Joy, and I am the girl behind Paideia Northwest. I am daughter of David & Luann, wife of Steven (since 2007), mother of 4 on earth & nine in heaven. I am a second generation Christian homeschooler, seeking to bring my basket to the Lord and watch Him do the miracle of multiplication. It has perhaps never been quite so visually obvious to me as at the debut conference for Paideia Northwest that what I offer to Him in what seems to be meager amounts can be used by Him to feed a multitude. Not because of my prowess, but simply, completely, solely because of His grace.
I am so grateful to have welcomed ~200 Pacific Northwest mamas at our special debut event which we anticipate being an annual event for Paideia Northwest. We desire to continue cultivating community, building bridges, and facilitating fellowship through events just like Courage for the Daily. In fact, I am delighted to announce that November 9th, 2019 will bring you our second annual fall conference, with keynote speaker Andrew Pudewa from the Institute for Excellence in Writing! And yes, I know he no longer lives in the Pacific Northwest… but since he used to, I am willing to grandfather him in as a Paideia Northwest speaker anyway. 😉
Thank you for coming together as sisters in Christ, as regional mamas raising your kids for the Kingdom of God. We had homeschoolers, day schoolers, and hybrids all represented at Courage for the Daily. I am overflowing with gratitude that you came to fellowship with us and sat with us to gain wisdom as we all seek courage for the good work set before us. I am also incredibly grateful to each of our speakers this year, for their wise words, their time and joy in urging us on in the courageous work of bringing children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
Do not grow weary… or at least, when you do, remember to find your courage in Christ. Remember to call upon Him when you climb the Hill of Difficulty. Remember and believe, for our God is faithful. And He will continue the good work He has begun. We are confident that the Lord has good things prepared for us.
Oh Father in heaven, we are grateful for Your abundant provision. We thank You for traveling mercies, for orchestration of details, for the friends who sat together in one sanctuary last Saturday, for the words which we trust You will continue to use to feed our souls as we meditate upon them. Thank You for loving us well. Our vision is limited, our courage so frail, our hours fleeting. Therefore give us grace and guidance for the journey ahead. You alone, O God, by Your gracious and life-giving Spirit have power to knit our imperfect hearts, our weaknesses, our strengths, our stories, and our gifts, one to another. Unite Your people and multiply our offerings, O Lord, that everything said and done at our debut event would resound to Your glory. O Spirit of God, shape our hearts, guide our hands, give us joy, grow our courage, and build Your Kingdom among us.
Eternal Father, we are small before You, but we are greatly loved. We are thankful people, gratefully receiving from Your great hand the provision of abundant food and encouragement, and the blessing of fellowship. And Lord, we are grateful for the still greater provisions of Your mercy, compassion, grace, and love. For all You provided us at Courage for the Daily, for all the small wonders we found there around and before us we give You thanks and we give You praise. Thank You for blessing the breaking of bread to the health of our bodies and the fattening of our souls.
God, You are our Father, the Lord of all – source of all knowledge, wisdom, goodness, truth, beauty, and courage. We praise You for the good work You have put before us. We praise You for the gift of children, and for the calling of bringing them up for Your Kingdom. Please enable us to do this by Your grace, for Your glory, and under Your blessing. Please remain with each conference attendee as they continue to think upon the words they heard and the fellowship they shared. Please grant special blessing upon our speakers and their families, for the sacrifice of study and time they spent for us. We offer our hands to You in humble thanksgiving and fervent prayer for Your name to be magnified abroad and in our homes. Through the fruit of our labors and the generations that are coming after, may Your Kingdom come more and more. Please grant us the courage to fight the good fight, to keep the faith, and to praise Your name.
In the name of Jesus, Amen.
(this prayer is amended from prayers I prayed at the Paideia Northwest conference, which were inspired by Every Moment Holy – a resource we fervently and strongly recommend)