There are moments in life when you take a step back and what you see makes your hair stand on edge. This is one of those moments and I’m at a loss for words to describe just what I see. A similar situation occurs with outdoor nature photography. You pause at a jaw-dropping vista, in awe of its immense beauty and break out your camera to capture the moment. Putting eye to viewfinder, the scene loses all awe and wonder and you put your camera away. What makes these moments so special that words and photos seldom capture their mystique?
There is a particular holiday treat at Starbucks this time of year, and it is a great way to get in 500 calories if that’s what you’re looking to do. The Pumpkin Scone provides nearly one-quarter of all your daily required calories in one fell swoop. Convenient, relatively cheap, and laden with sugary sweetness; not many would argue with that. One calorie isn’t the same as another however.
There is a famous poem by John Godfrey Saxe titled The Blind Men and the Elephant. Maybe you’ve heard of it. Six wise men, each blind, encounter an elephant. If not, give it a read, it’s really good. Each of the men experience a different part of the animal and end up disagreeing with one another as to what this creature actually looks like. None realize that each has experienced only a part of the entire picture.
I liken my own faith experience to this poem. When I became a Christian, I gravitated towards one particular “stream” of Christianity. The churches I attend, podcasts I listen to, and books I read, can tend to all speak the same language and describe things in similar fashion. While great, if I’m not careful I’m only experiencing a distinct aspect of the Body of Christ.
I am in awe of the current season of life. I wonder how long it will last. It seems a little bit like a dream, is this real life? Is this my life? Is this what I get to do. The funny thing about life is we can’t know what is around the corner, we don’t know when something may end or a new thing begin. And yet how much time do we waste worrying about what may or may not happen. What if instead we just embraced what is, and lived fully in it. No excuses. No apologies.
The blog this week is simple, short, with no excuses and no apologies. Just an exercise in living in what is!
There are times in life when someone reveals a new, unique perspective about a situation and you never look at it the same again. It’s as if there was a hidden layer just below the surface that you never knew about because you didn’t see it until someone showed it to you. It reminds me of how polarized glasses allow you to see things under the surface of water more clearly.
As part of my morning routine I’m often reading Unlocking the Bible by David Pawson. If you’re not familiar with David Pawson, one of the things I most admire about his teachings is his insistence that each book of the Bible needs to be read as a book, otherwise we miss a lot of the context.
In the beginning of Unlocking the Bible, there’s a poem similar to the one below. It’s cited as Unknown, and I figured I could find the true author somehow, and I did. This was written by Amos R. Wells. (see link to the original at the end of this post)
The other day Amy and I witnessed a Christian doing their part to spread the good news. It was such an uncomfortable situation it made me want to crawl right out of my skin. With a mixture of heartache and anger, I left that situation feeling anything but love. Let me backup and set the stage for you.
An otherwise peaceful time in the dry sauna of our local rec center, we were enjoying the confines of its cedar walls and 172℉ temps. Enter our soon to be victim, let’s call him Vinay. A middle-aged man with a friendly demeanor, Vinay sat next to me, exchanged a nod, and even cracked a joke. A few others came and went in the several minutes that passed. Enter our subject; we’ll call her Bianca.
This week we’re starting a new series called Discover God’s Greatness. We will be taking time to work our way slowly through Psalm 145. This psalm caught my attention and I have been singing my way through it on the piano. The verses captivate me so I just linger on each, singing them again and again.
We never know for sure how or when God is going to intercept us along our journey, and when He does it’s often much different than we’d expect. I suppose it has everything to do with the fact His ways and thoughts are so much better than ours. The lyrics “so much better Your way” are currently resonating with me. What I do know is this, God deeply desires to connect with us, He is constantly pursuing us, and He can be as creative as He wishes in His approach with us.
God is using CrossFit to unfold a new chapter in my life’s story with Him. If you are not aware, CrossFit is an approach to fitness that uses olympic lifting, gymnastics, and cardiovascular conditioning in all sorts of combinations to create an effective fitness program. I have not always been an advocate for CrossFit. In fact, as a group fitness instructor I used to tell people not to do CrossFit! I am singing a new song after taking on a personal challenge of doing 90 consecutive crossfit workouts (6 days a week). God has been teaching me spiritual lessons that apply to many areas of life. As I share them here I pray they empower you to move forward in what God has for you.