Special News Report

I had about 15 minutes to sit down during the day today.  I sat down with my 2 hour late lunch, put on the tv to not think for a couple minutes, and…there is a Special News Report.  And it was not one that made me enjoy sitting down.  I took it as a sign that I was not yet supposed to have a break in the day.

A leader of a nation should not directly separate the country.  Of course we all have different views.  He may be the leader, but his opinion does not reflect the entire country.  I give credit to the Republican leaders who are standing up for those they represent.  The plan on the table is certainly not one in which the whole country agrees.  It is not a plan that is healthy for the country as a whole and for a leader to point fingers at one side because they do not agree with him is appalling.  Leaders are supposed to bring their people together, not tear them apart.  A confident leader would be able to lead by example, be okay with people disagreeing with him and make a plan to join forces instead of putting the blame on everyone but himself.  It is interesting, the book I just finished reading spoke of how leaders can rule with words.  They can make people afraid of things they should not fear, make them bold when they should be cautious, and make them feel guilty for not following their lead.  Words are powerful things…they can build up…they can destroy.

We all have the capability to discern these words  I pray they are pondered before they are followed blindly.

Life is hard

Life is hard.

It is hard for my 3 year old who says “everyone runs faster than me,” when he plays sports at the Y.  It is hard for parents to raise their children with respectable values.  It is hard for the people who lose their home, job, spouse, health.  It is hard for those who don’t have a roof over their heads.  It is hard for the hungry, the abused, the scared.

There are plenty of levels of hard, but we are all touched by it.

I tell friends, loved ones and strangers, that if they follow God’s plan they will be blessed.  They will be.  However, that does not mean they will get the guy (or girl), have 2.5 children, live lives free of disease, be sheltered from the storms of life whether real or theoretical.  They may not see their blessings here on earth.  They will see them in eternity if they truly stay on the Lord’s path.

That is hard, too.  It is hard to know that your heart’s desire may not be God’s plan for you.  It is hard to live facing death, illness or heartache of any kind.

Jesus never told us it would be easy.  He never promised happiness.  He did tell us He would walk through life with us…through the good and the bad.  Can you even imagine?  We get so wrapped up in our own woes of life, can you imagine living through them AND living through every other person’s journey who ever lived or will ever live?  I don’t know about you, but I think it is harder at times to watch others go through life’s hardships than to go through them on my own.  Jesus left perfection, came to earth, experienced life as a full human…suffered physically, emotionally and spiritually.  He did it all FOR US and now He continues to walk through it all WITH US.  What an amazing gift!

I know I am spoiled, abundantly blessed and cannot even comprehend the pains of others.  But I also know that we need to choose joy.  In the midst of sorrow we need joy, in the pits of life we need joy, in the trenches of pain we need joy.  It brings me back to what my pastor preached on a few weeks ago.  Joy is a choice and we need to choose it.  We are blessed and need to spread our blessings to others.

My three year old was sad today at the Y.  He needed a pep talk from mommy…he needed some tough love from mommy.  Afterwards, he chose to run in the opposite direction of everyone else, in his own little world with a huge smile on his face.  He didn’t play flag football at all the way he was “supposed to” but he did choose to play and he did choose joy.  My friends and family have faced and continue to face terrible burdens in their lives.  They choose to follow God’s path.  They choose joy.  That doesn’t make their lives perfect, but they live their life for the Lord.  People halfway around the world that have nothing in terms of “stuff,” gather together to worship and experience perhaps the most authentic joy this life has to offer.  According to our standards they are poor, in terms of eternity, they are rich beyond compare.

Life is hard, God is strong.  Follow Him, choose joy, you will be blessed.

 

irony

Each day I teach my children that every decision has a consequence, that they are responsible for the decisions they make, that they are actually the ones that choose to be punished because of their actions.

I find it ironic (and sad) that each day our world is teaching them the opposite.  The adults of this world (not all, but more than a few) are setting the example of “do what feels good and others will clean up your mess.”

It is not easy to be a parent in today’s world.  Good thing I like a challenge.  🙂  Good thing God wins in the end.  🙂

It is Official

And I am officially terrified!

The paperwork is turned in, the registration confirmed and my name on the list of multitudes of other crazy people that are actually looking forward to running 13.1 miles.

The small journey that led to this decision had many twists and turns.  Initially when I was challenged to do it I thought I would keep it to myself and finish it as my own personal goal.  I am not one who enjoys attention, so really didn’t want others to know.  HOWEVER, as life often does, things change and I then thought that if one of the reasons to run this race is indeed for those who cannot, then I should really run for those who cannot.  And thus, I chose to run for a cause.

The first charity I thought I would run for sounded amazing and the perfect place for me to donate money.  Sounded amazing…sounded too good to be true.  And it was.  Upon further research I found that this particular charity has two separate goals so to speak.  The money raised, though, goes straight into the pot for both sides and the sides are very different.  I talked to the people in charge and was shocked at the boldness of their defense at having two stands on one very controversial issue.  So, I had to tell them I could not run for them.  I am just glad I found out before supporting something I am against.

So back to square one, but that was okay…so I thought.  It was fine until later that day I received the e-mail that the half marathon was almost full.  Soooooooo…I decided just to register not under any particular charity, but just to get in and then determine the charity later.  That is when the half marathon went from 97% full to completely full…UNLESS you ran for a charity.

Sooooooo….back to square one again.  Although after the disappointments, I realized I actually did want to try it…because I was disappointed when I thought it was not going to be.  I went through the charities one more time, chose one and got in!  They then messed up my paperwork and I thought I would be out again.  I was certain now that this was not meant to be.  This morning, though, I received my registration confirmation and my fate is sealed.  🙂  I am quite happy with the charity because it will use the donated money to help kids and helping kids is a passion of mine.

Please pray for me when you think about it…pray that I make it through…that I stay healthy and injury free…and that the money be used the best way possible for these precious little children that need it.

Thanks for journey-ing with me.  🙂

 

Training

I know some think I am crazy, but I decided to follow a half marathon training schedule regardless of my half marathon decision.  In its own way, the practice/training is as much of a challenge to me.  In following this plan I have made two interesting discoveries…

#1…it is a cruel, cruel thing to go to a gym that is right next door to a place that bakes fresh bread (one of my weaknesses).  When my belly is growling and I have just started the treadmill, the bread smell, well, makes me sad.

#2…simply adding another mile or two to my daily workout along with a little more speed has made me extremely hungry!  Hungry enough to eat far more than the few extra calories I have burned.  This means that despite training for a race I am gaining weight.  A year ago that would have made me quite frustrated.  But I feel healthier today than I have in a long time and realize I just have to regulate my hunger and my training accordingly.  My weight will adjust soon.

Am I going to run or not?

We will see.

But training will continue…and yes, some days next to the glorious smell of baking bread…*sigh*

2.15.12

If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

James 1:5-8 KJV

A New Challenge

I am about to begin a new venture…I think….

Challenges...I like challenges.  I like challenges that make you think, persevere and problem solve.  More importantly I like to succeed when faced with a challenge. I say this knowing I need to check myself, knowing that each success is not mine, knowing that I can do nothing without The Lord.

Running…you will note that in my A Little About Me post, I did not list running as something I enjoy.  I don’t.  It is more than a challenge for me.  Running up just pieces of an insanely long and steep mountainous hill by my house is not fun. Running in a room full of sweat, not travelling anywhere, with my mind reminding me how long it is taking and how much I am contributing to the  sweat infested room, is not fun.  Running solely to run is just not something I put on my list of fun. I always enjoyed sports and could run all day if you gave me a sport to distract me from just running, but running just to run is among those things I claimed I would never do.  So of course, I must chalk that up into the category of things I do that I promised I never would.  Isn’t it funny how God changes our minds?

Food…I love food.  I eat when I am hungry, which is fine.  I eat when I am not hungry…hmmm…is that ok?  (that would be a great big no in case you were wondering)  I simply like food.  Hence the running.  Running is my solution to my food fun.  I would put eating, especially out with friends, on my list of fun. (Admittedly, since running is more of a habit now, it has moved from my hatred list to my tolerable list…still not on my fun list)

Neighbors…we have new neighbors.  Awesome people!  New friends.  My new friend has issued me a new challenge…run a half marathon.

UMMMM….WHAT!!???

Of course, now it is in my head.  Can I do it?  ME?  Really?  My initial response would be...uhhh, no.  Not in a million years.  13.1 miles!  I get bored in 3 and have never run more than 6.3, which I ran this morning.

What to do…?  Here lies the question that lingers in my mind.  If I do it, I don’t want to make a big deal out of it…truly.  I want to do it for those who can’t, want to do it because I have been blessed with the opportunity and most likely the capability, want to do it to face the challenge.   Of course, putting it out on the internet for all to see, makes it a little more known than I initially intended, but maybe it will keep me accountable as well.  Or perhaps I will just keep everyone guessing until after the race, which is still a few months away.

Do I or don’t I?

Tell me what you think and I will tell you what I decide…maybe.  😉