On Walking

>> Monday, January 26, 2015

Saw this info-graphic from Prevention magazine linked on Facebook last week:

I already knew walking was good for me
~ and thankfully, it's one form of exercise that I actually enjoy ~
but now there's all sorts of numbers in a handy-dandy picture to PROVE it!


Practicing Gratitude [01.22]

>> Thursday, January 22, 2015

Shoot, this weekly posting thing is gonna be tough to get used to...  I almost forgot it was time for this again!!

I'm thankful that this beautiful weather has kept up ~ it's actually just above freezing today!  It's been wonderful for walking and especially on days when I don't even need to use ski pants.  :)

I'm grateful it was nice enough for The Man to take the girls ice fishing one afternoon while he was home last weekend.  They didn't catch anything, unfortunately, but it sounds like they had a great time and are hoping to do it again.  I'm thankful that not only did the weather cooperate, but that the semi didn't need much attention either, so he had plenty of time to rest and relax this time on his four days off.

I'm thankful for good food and good eaters in my home.  They make cooking worth the time and effort.  I love cooking, but if it was just me, I'd probably live on cereal and ramen noodles.  For real.  But thankfully, I'm married to a man who loves food, and our girls eat pretty much anything, too.  I recently watched this video and was reminded once again of how rich I really am.  I especially notice it when I'm cleaning my fridge and pantry. We have so much food that some even gets forgotten and subsequently thrown out because it went bad.

There's always so much to be grateful for!

* If you're curious about the missing "comments" link, click here.


Remember the Churches

>> Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Our pastor was talking about how the Church was supposed to be different from the world this past Sunday.  He used the example of the high school football team featured in the movie Remember the Titans.  In a time and place where racial segregation was still very much the norm and tensions were high, a team ~ led by a wise coach ~ became the picture of not only physical integration, but of true friendship.  While the students themselves came from completely different social settings and lived on opposite ends of town, when they were on the field, they were equals, teammates, becoming friends, setting an example for the entire town.  Our pastor pointed out that their camaraderie had been offensive to some and attractive to others, just like Christ told His followers they would be.  It was a powerful illustration.

And it bugged me.  Not because I didn't think it was appropriate or because I wasn't familiar with the movie (because it was and I am), but because, well... remember the Larry Norman song from way back in the 80's, "Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Music?"  I feel like this is the same kind of thing ~ why should sports have all the good church analogies?

Do you notice how often our preachers and leaders draw examples from the secular world?  It seems to be the sad reality that we generally don't see this kind of community, brotherhood, teamwork demonstrated within Christendom.  And it's not like these examples and stories don't exist.  They do.  But they're not entertaining, not marketed, not familiar.  They're virtually unknown, unheard of; from other parts of the globe.  Doesn't it say something about North American Christians that by and large we're completely unfamiliar with the incredible stories of God's work through His Church around the world, but that we've all seen Remember the Titans?  That's what bothers me.

Few of us ~ if any ~ know the truly inspiring stories from real life churches in existence right now in other parts of the world.  Parts of the world where the Church is the Titans, drawn together by a common bond, a common goal; crossing barriers, working together, and indelibly altering the community around them.  Why aren't we excited to hear these stories?  Why aren't we gripped and inspired by them?  Why don't we hunger for them?

I struggle to know what the Church is supposed to look like in my world, to know how I need to think of it in order to understand how I need to function.  This illustration was eye-opening, and not only as an example of what the Church should look like in its surroundings, but as a reminder that we are sorely lacking in real-life examples of actual churches.  I want to start actively seeking out and consuming reports from the Church around the world.  I want to WANT to know how God is using Christians, how they are working together, how they are suffering together, how they are changing the culture around them through it all.

I don't want to just "remember the Titans." I want to see and know God's work through His Bride now, and be inspired to live accordingly.


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