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Section One Story – The Boy and the Prospector
by Taylor A. Davis

Over the mountain range, through the thickets and trees, a gentle wind traveled its way through the woods until it found a low-lying stream. The cool air had seen the trials and hardships of a hardy few who would strike rock, dirt, and sand to find a new way and a new life. With sweaty,
coarse hands, mankind hunted for the finer things, most seeking treasures wherever the stars guided, while only a few knew to look in the small places hiding alongside them.

Along the Shasta River rested a settlement known as Boom Town. It was home to a happy bunch, for they’d found the most precious of metals. A prize most prospectors had searched for, yet found none. However, the “Boomers,” as they called themselves, knew the secrets to finding what others could not. They knew where to look and how to look. Gold was their trade, the life of their community. And if you failed to find it, then you were just an outsider, a lonely seeker of dirt.

“Could you tie up the tent flap, Curly? That breeze is killin’ me,” groaned a kooky old man sporting a thick, white beard and wearing a brown cowboy hat atop his head. The chipper fellow adjusted his reading spectacles and scratched his large nose. He leaned over, fidgeting like a
squirrel away from its tree while he laid down a large leather book with a
golden crucifix sewn in the center of the cover.

“You need to be sure none of that wind blows through. If you let that cold stuff in, you won’t survive the evening in this winter.”

“I’m doing my best, sir!” whined the boy. Smaller and younger than the men at Boom Town, the young lad did his best to shut the tent. The wind catapulted the wool cap from his head and into the old man’s wrinkled face. Curly’s blonde hair levitated as he mightily pulled the two pieces of
cloth together, battling the gale forces of nature pounding against his skinny frame.

Once the boy had finally closed the tent and the old man removed the cap from his face, they sat down together. The old man dusted the grimy item and then leaned forward to place it back on Curly’s head.

“You know the reason I called you here, boy?” the old man mumbled. “I can’t find gold?” Curly replied under his breath. His head sank low. “It’s not that you can’t find the gold. You just don’t know where or how to look for it…” The old man’s response was followed by a lingering pause.

“Well, how do I even know it’s real? All I do is hear about it; I never seen it.”

“Ahh,” the old man chuckled, “What a mistake it is to believe only until you see. For you to find the gold at the bottom of that river, you must know it’s there. Then you must be patient. You must be still. And then you will find what’s buried beneath all that dirt and stone.”

A befuddled look spread across Curly’s face. Annoyed, he lacked the patience to find wisdom in the old man’s words.

The boy cried in a raised tone, “How am I supposed to know that you know what you’re talking about! For all I know, you’ve been searching longer than me. For all I know, none of the Boomers in Boom Town have even seen gold!”

“Then what is this, boy!” the old man sharpened his voice. He held up a closed fist before the grumbling child. His palms remained closed. Withered and frail, they shook violently to stay afloat.

“They call me the Old Prospector for a reason. I’ve been here. I’ve been back. I’ve seen it all, and I’m trying to show you the way. For there is only one way to find the gold. Only one way to find that sweet treasure buried beneath. You must believe.”

Before the boy, the old prospector released his hand and revealed what was hidden. Out rolled a dazzling chunk of rock. Ripe and true, strong to the core with a beauty that could not be recreated or destroyed. Purest of all things, that tiny speck of gold struck Curly in the hardest of ways. He believed.

The Old Prospector closed his palm and shook his head. “Emptiness is to doubt what you know is truth. If you’re gonna join the Boomers, you must know it’s there before you can find it. Meet me in the river tomorrow, when the sun breaks the plane of day.”

Nodding, Curly got up, grabbed his gray jacket and cap, and then made his way out of the tent as the wind grew, pushing harder than he’d ever known.

Section 1 Topic – Truth
The story begins with a young prospector named Curly. Curly is having trouble finding gold. An older wiser prospector reveals that for Curly’s search to really begin, Curly has to believe that gold really does exist. After sharing his experience of finding gold and even showing Curly a nugget of real gold that he found in the river, the older prospector convinces Curly of gold’s existence. This begins Curly’s quest for gold. In a similar way, to begin a search for truth, you have to believe that truth really exists, that there is truth just waiting for you to find it. There is an old proverb that says, “The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get,
get insight” (Proverbs 4:7 ESV). It is saying that the beginning of wisdom is recognizing that you need real wisdom and then, whatever you do, find the truth. You have to recognize your need for truth to begin your search for it. The Sky Ranch family devotional, Boom Town, will take your family through the process of seeking truth by breaking into five sections that will lead you to real truth. In this first section on truth, your family will discover that truth is real, whom the source of real truth is and the evidence that supports whether your source really is giving you truth.

Excerpt from the Sky Ranch Devotional –
Boom Town, Written by Stacy A. Davis and Taylor A. Davis
© 2017 Stacy A. Davis, Inc. and Taylor A. Davis. All rights reserved.

Check back for the first guided Family Devotional complete with scriptural devotional time and questions for the whole family!

If you would like one free copy of this Sky Ranch Family Devotional – Boom Town for your family, please visit stacyadavis.com and request one in the contact section. For more Sky Ranch Family Devotionals and information on the author, visit stacyadavis.com.

I would like to share my newest book with you! In my next several posts on the blog, I am featuring excerpts from the Sky Ranch Family Devotional Boom Town. If you and your family would like to follow along with your own copy of the book, please contact me. I am happy to send you one free copy of the Sky Ranch Family devotional Boom Town.

I am praying for you!
Stacy

Stacy A. Davis, Author
Copyright © 2017 Stacy A. Davis, Inc. and Taylor A. Davis. All Rights Reserved.

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Family Fun Icebreaker: Do you enjoy watching sparklers, the twinkling stars, or looking at Christmas lights? Why? Share a good memory.

Question: How Does Jesus Relate to You?

Today’s Big Idea: Jesus Wants You to Be a Light Too

Beautiful lights spread joy, don’t you think? Just looking at them warms your heart. Just as Jesus brings light to a dark world, He wants you to bring His light to the world too and spread good will and cheer. Read Matthew 5:14–19. This passage shares that Jesus wants you to let others see your good deeds. He wants you to know the commandments and teach others to follow and obey them too. The light that Jesus wants you to shine on others is the message in John 3:16–21. It says that Jesus is God’s one and only Son and you are saved by faith in Him. Do you think there are people who still need to hear this message? Yes! So many people still don’t know if they are going to heaven—just ask someone and see what they say. If they don’t know 100% that they are going to heaven, you can tell them that if they trust in Jesus and their faith is real, then His Holy Spirit will help them know without a doubt that they are saved and that they will spend eternity friends with God in heaven.

Talk with God: Read the scriptures aloud.
(Jesus shares) “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden… In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” Matthew 5:14, 16 NLT

(Jesus is speaking) “But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.”
John 3:21 NLT

Walk with God: Read aloud and discuss.
In a relationship with Jesus, the Holy Spirit empowers you to share the message of Jesus’ light with a dark world.

Discuss with your family:
Why does Jesus ask you to share His message of light and hope to others? How could it help someone else?

Prayer suggestion: Pray for God to help you and a person to share His message of light and hope.

I will be praying for you!
Stacy

Stacy A. Davis, Author
Excerpt from Come One, Come All, a Sky Ranch Family Devotional
© 2016 Stacy A. Davis, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Family Fun Icebreaker: Have you ever followed a treasure map? Was it fun? What did you think you’d find at the end of the hunt?

Question: How Does Jesus Relate to You?

Today’s Big Idea:
Jesus Wants Your Obedience

Treasure! The Holy Bible is like a map and when you read it, it will lead you to valuable treasure! Do I have your attention? Treasure is worth hunting for, and this treasure is found in a book like no other book. This book is active and alive! For a person with the indwelling Holy Spirit, the Bible will have more meaning and you will find the treasure. The treasure is a wonderful life lived with the friendship of Jesus. Read Romans 6:16–23 NLT. This passage explains that because of your belief in Jesus and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, you can now wholeheartedly obey Jesus’ teachings!

Talk with God: Read the scriptures aloud.

(Jesus is speaking) “If you love me, obey my commandments.” John 14:15 NLT

Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching that we have given you. Romans 6:16–17 NLT

Walk with God: Read aloud and discuss.

Christians are able to obey Jesus’ commandments because of the Holy Spirit. In Ezekiel 36:27, it says that God put His Spirit within you to cause you to follow and obey His teachings. His Spirit helps you be obedient and leads you to a bountiful life.

Discuss with your family:
What is your favorite treasure that you have discovered in the Bible?

Prayer suggestion: Pray for God to show you His valuable treasure in the Bible.

I will be praying for you!
Stacy

Stacy A. Davis, Author
Excerpt from Come One, Come All, a Sky Ranch Family Devotional
© 2016 Stacy A. Davis, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Family Fun Icebreaker: What is your favorite board game to play? Why?

Question: How Does Jesus Relate to You?

Today’s Big Idea: Jesus Wants You to Follow Him

Can you imagine playing a game but you never read the instructions of how to play? Do you think the game would go very well? The Bible contains the instructions for living life in a relationship with God. Jesus relates to you by explaining how you respond in a real relationship with Him. You follow Him. You trust in Jesus so you follow Him. Read Luke 6:46–49. Jesus shares that He does expect you to follow what He says and His commands in the Bible. And you have to read the Bible to know what those commands are. If you don’t follow His instructions and obey Him, then it is not a real relationship and your life will be a mess. If you do listen to His commands and obey Him, then your life will be solid.

Talk with God: Read the scriptures aloud.

Then he (Jesus) said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.” Luke 9:23–24 NLT

Walk with God: Read aloud and discuss.

Jesus said that you can sum up many of His instructions by loving the Lord God and treating others in a way that you want to be treated. In that instruction, if you don’t want someone to lie to you then you are not to lie. Or if you don’t want someone to steal from you, then you are not to steal. Do you see how it works? What others can you think of?

Discuss with your family:

Make it personal. Do you have any selfish ways that you need to stop? What are they? What would be the right way to follow Jesus?

Prayer suggestion: Pray for God to show you the instructions that you need to learn to live a solid life.

I will be praying for you!
Stacy

Stacy A. Davis, Author
Excerpt from Come One, Come All, a Sky Ranch Family Devotional
© 2016 Stacy A. Davis, Inc. All rights reserved.