Well, can ya tell I just did a journal dump of what I've been taking notes on over the past month or so? :) Lots of good stuff, though... stuff that has been encouraging to me, and I hope will encourage you. Have a great weekend.
- America is just go-go-go all the time, isn't it? I'm exhausted!
- A couple weeks ago, I read the passage about the centurion approaching Jesus on behalf of his "suffering, paralyzed servant", and just got stuck on that description... doesn't that sometimes describe the Christian life? We are servants of Him, and of others... and yet we can get stuck and even feel unable to move. I was so encouraged by Jesus' response: "I will come and heal him." Jesus stands ready to work in our lives if we will ask. He has done such a transformation in my attitude over the past couple months, when I felt that I was deep in a spiritual "rut". If you're suffering, or feeling paralyzed emotionally, Jesus is the Healer & I want to encourage you to trust Him to work in your heart. He still heals those in need.
- Beginning next week, I'll be taking an online class called "Dynamics of Biblical Change", basically about how Christians are transformed, how we change. I'm considering pursuing a Masters in Marriage & Family Therapy, and am going to use this class as a small litmus test for myself, to see if this is really an area that I want to devote time and mental energy in coming years.
- Just heard this recently-- Duke University did a study on sleep, and determined that the best sleep environment is (no surprise here) dark, quiet, and has a temperature of 65 degrees Fahrenheit. And on average, human beings need between 7 & 3/4 hours and 8 & 1/4 hours of sleep per night. So how are you doing on all of that? Ours is dark, quiet, and (while in America) stays at around 70-75 degrees...65-70 in the winter... and I probably get 6-7 hours of sleep a night, by choice. For example, it's currently 12:23 am and the kids have been asleep since 8:30 or so. I could've gone to bed hours ago, and according to Duke, I should've. :-/
- Do you spend time thinking about how God is working in and around you? I'm becoming convinced that this is a significant area of my life that I forget to check in on regularly. Jesus made it a point to tell us that He only did whatever the Father was already doing. (John 5:19) How much more, then, should we be actively in tune with the world around us, and our hearts inside of us-- looking at what God is doing? I think many things would change in our home, in our kids' lives, in my life, and in my relationships if I tried to sharpen my focus onto what the Father is doing around me. What about you? Is this something you consider regularly?
- Heard this from a friend and thought you might like it:
"A screwdriver can be used to scrape gunk off a hard surface, or to pry open a paint can lid, but what it was really made to do is to turn that screw."What did God make you for? There are times when we have to buck up and do what we *can* do, sometimes persevering through tough circumstances and buckling down with endurance to do what needs doing. But we shouldn't lose sight of the big picture of God each of us as creating unique people; He created you and me to reflect His glory in special ways. Take time to nurture that inner part and honor Him with the beauty He's put in you!
- I really treasured the opportunity to visit Covenant Life church, and thought this point from Josh Harris' sermon was particularly encouraging:
"Showing love (defined as intentionally pursuing the good of other people) to others is a commandment of God-- first in the Old Testament, then reaffirmed by Jesus in the New Testament as one of the greatest commandments. When times are uncertain (for example, when there are disagreements between believers, or when there are doctrinal disputes), we can RELY on what IS certain-- what God has clearly commanded: love one another."