Monday, October 27, 2008

God can

Asked my church family to define worship yesterday. What does it mean to them?

If they wanted to draw a picture, what does it look like?

How do I show God's worth? His worthiness?

Then, later, I got my own push from the Spirit.

Worship is when I say, "I can't. God can."

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Gear & Guts

Last night: 43 degrees; dark; windy; rainy. Have a treadmill in my basement.

I'm no hamster. Love the outdoors.

Tell me the weather. I'll tell you the gear. Head to foot. Technical fiber. Moisture wicking. 360 reflective. Temperature-tuned. Flat-seemed. Blister-free. Wind-stopper. Water-resistant.

But. Any day. Any weather. Any extreme. Do I have the guts? Guts to get up, get out, go run.

I'm no chicken. Love to test myself.

Gear & guts is all you need for all-weather running.

Life's like that.

Tell me the situation. I'll tell you a direction. Been schooled. Done conferences. Read books. Studied articles. Had mentors. Know strategies. Got techniques.

But. Any day. Any challenge. Any extreme. Do I have the courage? Courage to stand up, speak truth, & live.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong & courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Rule #.92

Writing a list of rules for running, I'd have one to proceed #1. Rule #.92.

Warm & windy October Saturday welcomed the first ever Market to Market Relay from Omaha to Lincoln. 86 miles, 24 exhange points, 8 person team. Before dawn's early light through the sun's setting we ran 3 stages each. My team finished 52nd. 11 hours 35 minutes. Could have been 11:27.

My second run of the day: Stage 14. 4.55 miles west & south.
Baton in hand. Mind set. Run hard. Run fast. Crunching gravel. Rustling trees. Round the bend. Competitors in sight. 4 miles more. All uphill. Half into the wind. How many can I pick off? Turning north. 3 passed. Turning west. State highway. Mile-long hill. How many more can I pass? They fade. I thrive. Uphill. Running hard.

Where are the markers? Yellow flags. Wasn't this supposed to be all gravel? County road. Was there supposed to be a turn north? West & south.

Passed 10. Maybe 12. Turned south. Into the wind. Rolling fields. Corn & soy. Pass a few more. Big green combine passes me. Maybe I'm not so fast. Heart rate's been redline for 20 minutes. Hard run. Fast for me.

"Shouldn't the church, the exchange zone, be over the next hill?," ask a guy as I pass.

"No," he pants, "we took... a wrong... turn... after... the park... no turn... north... should be... coming out... right there." Klieser Road. In reading distance. Just ahead.

Mind's racing. Faster than heart. Yes, we should. No north on the map. I was just following the runners ahead of me! Someone took a wrong turn. How much time lost? How much farther to run? Can I keep this pace? Crying inside. I was just following the runners ahead of me...

Rule #.92. Named for the extra distance. Bigger hill climbed. Longer windbound. Hard earned.

Rule #.92 - Follow the directions. Not the crowd.

Come, follow me, Jesus said - Matthew 4:19.

Teach me Your way, O Lord - Psalm 86:11.

Running rule. Life rule.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Don't Miss

Macaroni & cheese day at the elementary. Excitement. Hot lunch sales were up. One of those was me. Got the special invite from Seth the exceptional second grader.

Showed up early. Anxious. Can't miss this taste of glory. Looked down at my laces. Principal said I was a good Daddy to come today. Gave some fives to children parading by. And then, Seth. Ran to me ahead of his teacher. Full body hug & pulled me toward lunch.

Line didn't move at second grader speed. Anticipation. Utensils, straw, napkin, milk, tray. And, finally, shaped plate filling portions of noodley gooeyness. With green beans, of course. Fruit cup, yes. And, what? Past the slidey rail part. At the end. Almost out of the ubiquitous lunch lady's view. Hiding in the serving racks. Little cups. Cups of cookie dough. Chocolate chip cookie dough.

Sat down with five kids. Hungry. One lanky like his Dad. One red-headed like her Mom. One rounder than the rest. One smiling new over sized teeth. One just plain average. One thing in common. All ate the chocolate chip cookie dough FIRST.

Laughed. Not too loud. Talked. Not too much. Ate. As if Moms were watching. We were a good table. Then an aside. Seth spoke quietly. Just to me. Almost secret.

Daddy, they always have cookie dough with macaroni & cheese. Last time I missed it. At the end of the line. Hiding in those trays... Don't miss it.

Yes, my Son, don't miss the little things.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Ach Nee

Afrikaans: pronounced, "ahk nee-uh." Choke out an "ach" furball. Then mutter, spit, holler or cry the "nee" depending on emphasis.

English: translated, "alas, no." A phrase foreign to our tongues even in our language. Alas, we rarely intone such interjections.

How well do we express our true feelings? How deeply do we truly feel? Our unhappiness goes unuttered. Our sorrow is shallow. Our pity is petty. Our concern is less than.

Ach nee, People. Be honest. Have courage. Be real. Risk. Love. Talk to one another & not about one another.

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love... Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Ephesians 4:2 & 32, NIV.

Now that you've cleaned up your lives by following the truth, love one another as if your lives depended on it.
1 Peter 1:22, The Message.