Good Post: The box that made me more well rounded – limitation

I shared a few weeks ago that my daughter started – or actually relaunched – a blog. She’s had some good posts, but this one is pretty insightful.

My blog contains post primarily about church work (primarily student ministry and youth culture), about books I’ve read and my family.  The past few years have contained many posts about basketball and Syd’s journey through high school, AAU and college.

As you will read in her post, injury has altered her intended course in the game of basketball.  But what she has learned – and is learning – is pretty cool to read.

In her post, The Box That Made Me More Well Rounded – Limitation, she begins this way:

The other day, someone asked me about my basketball season that I underwent this past year. Specifically, their question was, “what was it like playing on one leg?” Well, if you don’t know me I have two legs, don’t worry. But, for those who do know me know that I have had 5 different knee surgeries/operations on my left knee. Some were simple ACL replacements and some were much more extensive, involving reconstructions of ligaments, bone resurfacings, and a screw removal… I have some sweet scars. The main problem with my knee is that I don’t have much of a medial meniscus or much healthy cartilage left, both of which function as types of cushions for your bones and joint in the knee.  My knee hurts after most any moderate activity and swells at the sight of any basketball court for longer than 30 minutes.  So when I decided that I wanted to continue to play I knew that I would be “limited.”

Read the rest on Syd’s blog – divinesixght

 

 

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Still Learning Patience

home-improvement-projectsOver the Labor Day weekend I tried to tackle a small project at home…at least I thought it was going to be small. You think I would have learned by now that any project at home is never small. It all goes so smoothly and easily in my mind, but then when it comes to the actual doing of said project, it is neither smooth nor easy.

This particular project involved disconnecting the water softener so we could move it and get behind it to check on what we thought was a leak. I looked at the configuration of the water heater and how it was connected to the copper pipes. I looked at the owner’s manual to see how everything was to be connected so I would be able to get everything back together.

The disconnection happened smoothly enough and I thought this was going to be a pretty easy fix. We identified the problem of the leak (and perhaps have that issue addressed). Then came the reconnecting of the water softener.

That is when I realized I still need to learn patience.

What I thought would take under an hour took much longer. Each time I thought that I had things reconnected, I would turn the water back on and it would leak. I tried something else and it didn’t work. My stress level kept going us as I thought that without this connection in place, we wouldn’t have water in the house. Finally I placed a call to a friend who is good at home repair and got some insight. After a run to Lowe’s (which thankfully was still open), I got what I needed. While that finally took care of the leak, it was not without its own frustrations as well.

I realized that I still need to learn patience.

While I have learned that I am not the best at home improvement, I have been able to tackle some small repair issues. This particular project got under my skin very quickly and I found myself frustrated in a fairly short period of time.

If I would have exhibited more patience at the beginning, I think the project would have gone much smoother. Just when I think that I’m learning patience, I discovered I have some work to do. While things turned ok in the end, I failed miserably at exhibiting a patient attitude.

This weekend taught me I am still learning patience. I’m grateful God gives me opportunities to learn and is patient with me when I am not.

90 Day Challenge – Week 6

GOYOWe are continuing in our 90 Day Challenge and getting so very close to the halfway point. If you are on track with the challenge, this Wednesday will mark Day 45 – the midpoint of our 90 Day challenge. If you are not on track, don’t despair. Don’t give up. Don’t wave the white flag. Don’t throw your hands in the air in sheer frustration. Pick up wherever you are and continue on. Please remember – the goal is not to finish the challenge on April 6. The primary purpose of the 90 Day Challenge is to help us develop the habit of spending time with God in His Word. Most habits don’t come easily, especially when we have an enemy who wants to keep us from spending time in God’s Word. So, keep at it. Don’t give up. Press on!

This week is taking us through the book of Romans.  Martin Luther referred to this book as the Masterpiece of Scripture.  It can be challenging at times to follow what Paul is saying, but there are so many great truths in the book.  If you need to, take some time to re-read the verses and seek to understand what Paul is saying.

Keep up the good work of going through the 90 Day Challenge.  God speaks to us through His Word.

90 Day Challenge – Week One Done

GOYOWe are one week into our 90 Day Challenge. If you began on January 7, today marks the beginning of week 2 and we are moving quickly through the book of Matthew. By the middle of this week we will be in the book of Mark.

I’ve heard some good feedback already from those who have taken the challenge. One person said the questions in the book have been helpful in thinking through the scriptures. Another commented that she has read some things she didn’t remember reading before. It’s amazing how God’s Word speaks to us in different ways in different times. Keep up the good work!

A couple of things to consider as we begin week 2:

1) The Goal is to Develop a Habit. The whole point of the 90 Day Challenge is to give us a tool to that helps us spend time with God on a regular basis. It’s not meant to be a checklist or simply a task. Some people like to answer the questions. Others don’t. The purpose is for each of us to develop the habit of spending time with God in His Word. If you miss a day, just pick it up the next day. Focus on the habit and let God speak to you through your time with Him.

2). It’s Not Too Late to Start. If you don’t have a book yet, you can still be a part of it. One of our small groups is talking about modifying the plan a little bit and won’t do all of it in 90 Days. That’s OK. Again, our goal is to spend time with God. The 90 Day Challenge is a tool, but it’s not the only one.

Please feel free to share any insights your gain from your time in God’s Word. We have a Facebook page that let’s you do just that. We want to hear from you what you are learning from His Word.

The Value of a Retreat

This past weekend was spent at our local church camp at the annual junior high retreat. The picture shows the majority of our group (missing a couple of adults) and we are portraying the theme for the weekend – “Deuces.”

The speaker spent the weekend speaking out of two main passages – 2 Corinthians 5 and 1 Peter 2. The two “2s” were the “deuces” and he did a great job challenging the students (and adults!) to not just live for self, but for God and for others.

As I thought about our time at the retreat, I thought of the value of retreats. I’ve been on a number of retreats through my youth ministry experience and a retreat provides several things regular church programming/events don’t always do.

At a retreat, your group has a chance to be put in a new environment. Even if the environment is familiar (like our church camp), there is disconnection with things at home (tv, cell phones, computer, etc.).  You get to spend a day and a half with brand new people.  Staying two nights in a dorm is a different environment for our students and is a change of pace (even if the mattresses aren’t overly comfortable),

A retreat also provides new experiences.  Usually there are some large-group challenges or games that bring about teamwork among the groups.  Our camp gives us the opportunity to ride a zip-line, swing on a giant swing or play ga-ga or nine-square-in-the-air.

At a retreat our students get to hear different voices.  Normally the speaker and leaders aren’t people our students know very well.  The speaker’s style and the layout of the retreat is different from what they experience at church, so it brings a different perspective.

Retreats also create new memories.  Students remember throwing paper wads at each other or the time one of the students fell into the water while on the rope swing.  Months later the students have a shared memory of a time spent at a retreat and it can lead to discussions about other things.

We had a good weekend and the retreat opened up doors of conversation that may not have happened at home. We were able to sit around together at meal times and laugh together about various things, like watching hair strands fight each other.  Just spending time together as a group is a great benefit.  I know retreats have been around for years and certainly aren’t new on the ministry landscape, but it’s helpful to see the value in the time spent there.