Friday, February 22, 2008

A la carte, 2/22/2008

Just got back from a four day vacation and have a pile of stuff on the desk and in the inbox. What should I do first? Naturally I’m blogging a few thoughts :)

In my last post I commented on the internal struggle that I was having concerning the nice (ie: luxurious) conditions I was experiencing in Palm Springs. First, I had a strong impression from God to shut my mouth and not ruin things for my wife. Mission accomplished. Second, after grappling with the issue for about a day and a half it seemed as if God was telling me to keep my heart soft toward the many who are deprived and in desperate situations (and I did some praying) but to enjoy a good gift that was being given to me. I mostly got there.

On Wednesday I’m out driving in my rented convertible in near 80 degree temperatures in short sleeves on my way to the Aerial Tramway (pictured). It was one of the few “touristy” things that my wife and I did. However, we didn’t do our homework because we didn’t realize that we would ascend to over 8,500 feet above sea level and be in the snow. As my wife was walking through the snow in sandals and I in my short sleeves I was reminded how quickly change can hit people for which they are not prepared. It served to keep my heart soft toward those I regularly seek to support and encourage through various scenarios for which they were caught unprepared.

Intellect vs. Experience
I knew that I had significant fatigue in my life and that I needed a vacation but there is a difference in knowing something intellectually and experientially. While sitting by the pool relaxing and reading I’d suddenly find myself incapable of keeping my eyes open and so I’d fall into a nap. While watching TV or reading in my room I’d suddenly feel like I had to go to bed at 10:00 p.m. I usually stay up ‘till midnight. The change of pace and geography (ie: getting away from my normal life) showed me how much I needed rest. I’ve got several friends that “know” that they need to be connecting with God in some way but the experiential piece is still missing and so they don’t fully get it yet.

Principles Don’t Change
Principles are like natural laws. The law of gravity doesn’t change even if I choose to ignore it. I will fall and hurt myself if I don’t heed the law of gravity. The principle of balance is similar. Through the years God has directed me in to patterns of living that bring balance and therefore health into my life. From September until this week I have not heeded some of the things that God has prompted me to place in my life for balance, like leisure reading. My typical week demands that I read and study a significant amount. In fact, a few months ago I did a time study over a 3 week period for the sake of serving on a ministry discussion panel. I discovered that I usually read and study about 20 hours a week. As a result I edged out my leisure reading with a weak promise that I’d get back to it after the next “whatever” got accomplished. My leisure reading over the past few days was a means by which God refreshed me in deep ways.

It’s Friday and Sunday’s coming. Let’s prepare to meet with God and His people in worship gatherings this weekend.

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