Wednesday, April 30, 2008

"I feel the earth move under my feet..."

WOW -- yesterday, April 29th at just past 8:00 pm we had an earthquake that registered 5.2 and the epi-center was 10 miles from our home!  Boy did our home shake.  Now, being from California I have been in a few quakes but this was the biggest I remember.  Here is a link to an article about this natural event and our little town of Willow Creek.

Now that we've gotten THAT out of the way I want to comment on the Avenue of the Giants 10k run that I will be in this Sunday.  I am excited about it and a little nervous.  Avenue of the Giants is a Boston Qualifier which means that there will be some very serious runners there.  The run will be chip-timed and I have never been in a race that is that formal and technical.  I can't wait! I will definitely post some pics and play by play after it is all over.  Wish me well!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Share your PASSION!

We host a class on the coast once a week.  It's called an "Equipper's Class" and is made up of people who are seasoned Christians looking for ways to be out-of-the-box in their ministries and relationships.  

At the first of the year we asked each one to think about what their passion is and share that with the group.  So each week, we hear from one person. Now, you might assume that each one is going to share on Christ but that's not so.  Passion can be anything -- don't forget, we have Christ in us so He is already a part of any passion that we share. When a person shares, he doesn't have to speak specifically about the Lord for the Lord to be involved as He has a part in everything we do.  

One week, one of the ladies brought a collection of teddy bears.  She creates the most amazing bears. When you look at one of her bears, you know that there's something divine in her work. She doesn't have to promote God -- God is already in the midst of the creativity of the bear. Where do you think the idea for each individual bear comes from? Can the beauty of each bear point the admirer to Christ? You bet! This perspective might be difficult for some Christians to process but not for those who are confident in their relationship with Him. 

1 Corinthians 2.4-5 

Paul says:   "...and my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of  human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God."

Do you see what that passage says?  WE don't have to convince people of anything.  THAT is the wisdom of men. However, when we let what God is doing in our life speak for itself, well, that is one aspect of the power of God. I would much rather have the power of God working through me than my own wisdom. 

So, share your passion and quit trying to attach God to it.  He is already there. God wants to reveal Himself to others through us, we just have to let him out-of-OUR-box!


Friday, April 18, 2008

Slow and Steady

I have to remind myself that even though multi-tasking is a gift that I am very proud of possessing, it doesn't do much for the kind of "savoring" we all need to do in life. Thankfully, there isn't much multi-tasking when you run and since I am a VERY slow runner I get to savor a lot. The same goes with the Word of God and our relationship with Him.  Here are a few important points for God's Kingdom People:

* You have to pay attention when you read the Word of God. No distractions! This is not the time to multi-task. You need to ask the author of the Word what He is saying in the passage. Do you know how many Christians just read the Bible and never talk to the author? Think about it. If you were reading a book on running, would you rather just read the book or -- if the running author came to town -- wouldn't you seek him or her out to get more of what they were writing about? Come on! We have to be more in tune with the God of the Word than the Word of God!

* We need to expect heavenly downloads! What the heck is that? Well, when I run, I ruminate over the events of the day, often discovering major answers to problems or getting ideas that just seem to be perfect for projects I'm working on. This is my "heavenly download". I expect to hear from my Heavenly Father through the Holy Spirit when I run -- and I do!

* Even when I "slow down" for sleep I ask the Lord for dreams. I don't know about you but God speaks to me often while I'm asleep. I have the most profound dreams. Remember Solomon? God spoke to him in a dream and asked him what he wanted. Solomon responded by saying that he wanted to be able to discern good from evil...(1Kings3.5-14). God still speaks to us today through dreams.  Many times we're so mentally busy that He chooses to speak to us in our dream life just so He can get through to us!

* Slow down at least once a week, and connect regularly with other faith-filled Christians. Be part of the family of God! Serve in your local assembly. Remember the song by Simon & Garfunkel, "I am a rock, I am an island"? Well, God created us for relationship with Him and with His Bride the Church. No man should be an island unto himself! Jesus died so we could have relationship with Him and with one another. Just read John chapters 15-17.

*  Quit living for something down the road. TODAY is the day of salvation! So many people are caught up in what they'll be doing two weeks from now. HELLO! We live in a NOW Kingdom! Put away distraction and be in the moment! God is speaking to you right now -- "...the Word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart so that you may do it..."  (Deut 30.14). Hear what He's speaking to you and be a person of action -- Remember faith without works is dead.

* And lastly, slow down to find JOY. "The Kingdom of God is not eating and drinking but Righteousness, Peace & Joy in the Holy Spirit!" (Romans 14.17)  -- Savor each moment -- know that you're a carrier of the Presence of God everywhere you go, with power to touch the lives of hurting, broken people AND you are a Joy imparter!  

Now, go out and do what you do and savor your way into GREATNESS!

~peace out~

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Wow, 80 degrees!

YES, this is what I've been waiting for -- Warm weather!  After practically hibernating all winter, spring has come on strong this weekend with a warmth that makes you feel like all is well with the world. So, on Saturday I ventured out for my first 5 miler since being sick.  It went well and I certainly enjoyed every moment of it.
Got out in the garden and planted some snow peas and some flowers.  Borrowed a friend's rototiller for getting the garden ready.  
Gave Skittles a bath.  Oh, yeah, Skittles (my doxie) has been entered in the Reader's Digest Cute Pet Photo Contest.  If you want to vote for her or just gaze at her beauty, go here:

Monday, April 7, 2008

...We all fall DOWN!

Unfortunately, we all do.  Physically and spiritually.  

Bless the Lord, O my soul; And all this is within me, bless His holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
Who satisfies your m outh with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
The Lord executes righteousness And justice for all who are oppressed.
He made known His way to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel.
The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever.
He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities.
For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
As a father pities his children, So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.
As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.
For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, And its place remembers it no more.
But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting On those who fear Him And His righteousness to children's children,
To such as keep His covenant, And to those who remember His commandments to do them.
The Lord has established His throne in heaven, And His kingdom rules over all.
Bless the Lord, you His angels, Who excel in strength, who do His word, Heeding the voice of His word.
Bless the Lord, all you His hosts, You ministers of His, who do His pleasure.
Bless the Lord, all His works, in all places of His dominion.  Bless the Lord, O my soul!
Psalm 103

I fell down today while I was on a run.  I fell down physically -- on the asphalt -- Ouch!  But I fall down more often spiritually.  We all do.  THANK GOD that He loves me and He covers me with His great love!  David knew what he was talking about. 

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Getting stronger

I had to resort to the dreadmill today.  It is still too cold on some days for me to run outside.  Depending on how I feel I may run tomorrow too.  A friend of mine on my Sparkpeople team sent me an article on aerobic vs. anaerobic exercise.  It was talking about how runners and other people who do a lot of cardio end up not burning fat because their body gets too used to their routine.  I've been thinking about that lately.  In February I ran like 86 miles -- that's a lot of miles.  I also kept my calories at about 1500-2000.  I have been trying to lose those last 5 lbs.  Well, with all that running and careful calorie watching, I didn't lose a thing.  I was starting to suspect that my body might not want to "give it up".  So, I get sick for 2 weeks and my body drops 2.5 lbs. after that.  I've been on the mend for an additional 2 weeks and I continue to lose -- another 2#.  So what's up with that?  Well, there's practically the 5 lbs. I was trying to lose.  I think I'm going to go back to some weight training (anaerobic).  I love a new plan!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Back on the Road ~ YES!

After being sick for two weeks and totally messing up my training, I was able to get back out there this week.  I ended March with a really short 2 miler.  I have to say, though, that just being outside and running was totally energizing.  I went out again on Wednesday for 3 and will probably do 3 more tomorrow.  My lungs are still hurting so I don't want to overdo but I gotta get ready for the May run.  Oh yeah, I just got a brochure for the Atalanta Run (which I did last year).  I told Emil tonight that I am going to run it for Rise-Up Women and raise some money for scholarships for women to attend our yearly retreat in July.  It'll be fun.