Getting Good Out of Pain

I don’t like pain & I don’t know anyone who does. When I think about pain, it brings to mind various times in my life:
*when my basketball team lost our final game when I was a Sr in high school

*friendships gone sour

*when I was learning to snowboard & got a concussion through my helmet

*hurtful words ripping into tender heart spots

*watching one of my kids getting hurt
So how can we get some good out of pain? Here are a few ideas:

*pain is good because it tells us that something is wrong – consider how much more injury happens when you can’t feel something

*growing pains – sometimes it hurts to learn but it’s far more painful to remain ignorant

*sometimes pain develops strength, perseverance & character: these are benefits that yield more dividends than the investments 

*pain is destructive when we quagmire, ruminate & stagnant in it; 

*look up, look ahead & keep going if you want to get some good stuff out of pain!

secrets for making progress

I like progress, improvement and growing.  I like being better today than I was a few months ago – and this is in every area of my life:  physical health, intimacy with God, quality relationships, effectiveness with Saving Moses and LOTS more!  I don’t like to be stagnant or stationary and I totaly LOATHE going backwards.  So here are a few things I’m learning of late about progress:

  • sometimes progress is incremental and gradual rather than gigantic and massive
  • progress can happen in different contexts:  doing PT with a recent shoulder surgery, I’m learning that progress happens in several ways (getting stronger, more flexible, getter ability to use, etc)
  • progress requires committment to change – if you don’t want to change, don’t expect to make progress
  • celebrate progress no matter the size or context:  acknowledging progress breeds more progress
  • sometimes what seems like a step backwards is actually progress moving forward – don’t get discouraged
  • encourage others who are trying to get better
  • keep going:  sometimes progress seems to be stagnant, but often these seasons of pause are nothing more than plateau set ups for greater progress if you’ll just keep going
  • progress requires truth;  deception is the enemy of genuine growth & development :)

Super Glue

Some people seem really well put together – hair, makeup, matching clothes, nails, etc. Then there are other people who don’t seem well put together. They’re disheveled, messy hair, chipped nails & forget any makeup. 

Having grown up as a pastors kid & being around people ALOT, I’ve learned that people aren’t always as they appear. Sometimes those who appear disheveled are better put together in their hearts than those who look the part on the outside & vice versa as well. 
Here’s the hope for all of us, dishelved or otherwise:  Col 1:17 says that Jesus holds all things together. I find this verse to be super encouraging because there are times & seasons when everything can seem to be falling apart, including me. Let’s never forget that Jesus is our super glue :)

hot topic: Nepal & Earthquake Babies

The recent earthquake in Nepal is massively tragic!  More than 5,000 people have died and there are tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands and possibly millions who have been affected by this tragedy.  With our work with Saving Moses, I’m super concerned about the babies and toddlers who can easily be overlooked when these kinds of tragedies happen.  So here’s some helpful insight about these babies.  Please feel free to help us send relief and aid to these babies, who desperately need our help, attention and tangible love.  Let’s love lavishly with divine extravagance!

A Zombie or Lazarus?

The story of Lazarus has a lot to do with resurrection. Lazarus was a really sick dude  (infirm as opposed to cool) who had an inside track with Jesus. Despite being a person whom Jesus loved, Lazarus died largely because Jesus procrastinated, if that’s ever really possible in a divine context. So when Jesus finally showed up, Lazarus was already dead for 4days & his body was very ripe – ripe for resurrection rather than decay. 

Long story short, Jesus called Lazarus back to life & told them to remove the grave clothes that bound Lazarus’ hands & feet & covered his face. 
I believe that Jesus has resurrection for each of us, but sometimes we let our hands, feet & face stay bound in the clothing of death. Let Jesus set free: 
*your hands free to do His work
*your feet with walk in His steps 
*your face so you can reflect Jesus’ life in our decaying world, desperate for resurrection
Let’s be alive in this day with Jesus’ presence wherever we go & in whatever we do!

hot topic: death in Nepal

I’ve just read about the massive 7.9 earthquake in Nepal.  The destruction & lives lost won’t be fully assessed for several weeks, but so far, more than 970 people have died.  Now, it’s a race against the clock to unbury & rescue probably thousands more before time runs out for them.  There are huge efforts being made to rush aid, support and life to this country, even though there’s concern that the airport in Kathmandu may also be damaged from the quake.

When I watch Jesus in the Gospels, I’ve never seen Him run away from nor ignore pain, suffering and hardship.  Rather, when I look at Jesus in the Gospels, He brought life, freedom, redemption, healing, restoration and much more wherever He went.  Rather than running from & ignoring pain, suffering, loss and hardship, at minimum, let’s run with concern and prayer to this desperately needy plight in Nepal.  I don’t think Jesus suffered from charity fatigue #selah

face value

YIKES!!!!!!  I just saw this woman wheel her elderly husband up to the deep end of a swimming pool in his wheelchair, she threw him in the pool & walked away.  This was extremely startling & unsettling to me, so I leaped up to check on him, hoping he wasn’t gasping or drowning.  Thankfully, he was paddling around & seemed to be enjoying the swim.  I just checked again & he’s happily floating & enjoying some sun.

At face value, it seemed like this wife was irresponsible at best & abusive at worst, but alas, things aren’t always as they appear.  And this is an easy mistake to make in our daily living.  We are often forced to make a decision with only a partial quantity of information & we often don’t have the luxury of getting more time or info for a possibly better decision.   And here’s the golden ticket:  the Bible tells us in James that if we God to give us wisdom, He will liberally & lavishly give us wisdom.  Wisdom gives us insight into stuff at a deeper level than face value & thankfully with God’s help, we can make wise observations and decisions that are better than what we know at face value :)

She just helped him out of the pool & back into his wheelchair :)