Friday, September 16, 2011

Tough Mudder--Pursuing Goals

Lots of new changes this year for Tara and I (sounds a little bit like every year:).  Back at the holidays, the calendar was getting ready to turn over to 2011, and Tara and I were talking through our goals for this year.  One of the goals I put down was to train for some kind of running/challenge event.  Fitness has been a regular part of our lives since we've been married, but I have never been a runner.  This was going to be something new and out of my comfort zone.

Back a few months, our staff at Grace decided to do the Tough Mudder event together.  It's a 12 mile race that includes like 20 extreme obstacles--such as, running through a field of fire, jumping off a cliff into 37 degree water, climbing over hills, crawling face down in mud under barbwire and lots of other neat ideas some sick people have come up with.  The scariest part for me was the running, because I had never run more than 3.5 miles at one time.  We've been training for a few months already and it's been fun to be able to add distance each week.  Most of my teammates have run half-marathons or full marathons before, so I've had a lot of good coaching and challenging from them.  Each time I get done, I feel like I could keep running more.  It's cool how God made our bodies to work when we discipline them.

This morning we ran a 7 mile run together, using headlamps and flashlights because it was still dark when we started.  It included running upstream on a creek that ranged from ankle to waist high deep water.  What a blast!  It wasn't quite 37 degrees, but still good training for what we'll do come November 20.

Pick up the OT and read Joshua--it's all about this man and people who did things they hadn't done before.  It's inspiring and it's powerful.  God may be calling you to trust Him to walk into new territory right now.  Go for it!  "Be strong and courageous!"--Joshua 1:7

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Daily Audio Bible for Kids

One of my buddies in small group has been listening to a Bible app on his phone lately while he reads it.  In fact, I got a text from him early this morning that simply read "What does 'they hamstrung their horses' mean?"  Our small group is reading through Joshua in the Bible right now, and I had read that part yesterday, so I knew what he was asking about--otherwise, I'd probably have been confused by such a question.

Church research shows over and over that after a period of time, if a Christian doesn't begin a discipline of personal time with God reading the Bible and praying, their growth stalls and they become stagnant.  It's just not enough to come to church and let someone else "feed" us--we need to learn to feed ourselves or we'll starve.

Why not help your child begin a daily habit while they are still young?  I recently came across a really cool tool for kids (mostly 8-12 year olds are using it, but whole families could, too) at  A ten year old, China, and her brother, Max, read a portion of Scripture every day and your student can listen to it while following along.  Today, I listened to Galatians 1:1-24--pretty cool.  You can also listen to iShine Christian music, join a social network side to it if you want to become a member, and it's all monitored by a real Christian mom:)

Maybe it could be the way they spend their first 5 minutes on the computer each day before they are allowed to look at any other site--just an idea!  Check it out today.  (By the way, my buddy later texted me a definition of what hamstringing a horse is--I'm pretty sure I could never do that.  I don't even like to go in the 4H barn where the calves are being born, but that's just me.)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Kids Lunches

I'm a horrible blogger (which is obvious since I haven't blogged since May) but I want to try again to get started.  I promise I'll do better this time;)

Yesterday, I ate lunch with a 3rd grader from Grace at Orchard View Elementary (thanks, again, for the mini pancakes, Megan:))  I love eating lunch with our kids, because I get to know them and their world in a different way than I can in Kid City.  I even got to interact with a Muslim boy yesterday and hopefully was able to share Jesus' love with him.  Today, I was reading a magazine article ("K Magaizine") about new technology being used in public schools.  Apparently, 5 schools in Texas piloted a program last spring that was able to take digital pictures of a student's tray of food before and after they ate and then report to their parents how many calories they're eating and what healthy options are being left on the tray.

It's a cool idea for sure, well advanced from the lunchroom experience I remember as a kid, but do we need to invest billions of education dollars to let us in on the big secret that today's kids eat too much junk food?  Is that really news to anyone?  Instead of re-analyzing a problem we already know about, we would better use our time and resources to help find a solution!!

That is a lesson for life.  Choose today to stop re-diagnosing all the problems with our lives, our spouses, our kids, our communities, our world, and let's start working and praying for solutions.  Are you a solution focused person?