Thursday, September 28, 2006
by John Fischer
I’m an Angels fan – God’s Angels as well as Anaheim’s. Now you immediately want to know what a partisan baseball comment like that is doing in a devotional. Well, it’s because I am an Angels fan that I read an article in the Los Angeles Times once about Anaheim’s star young relief pitcher, Francisco Rodriguez, and in that article, he revealed why he points and looks skyward every time he leaves the field. “Win or lose, I point to God when I’m done to thank him for giving me that energy and ability and one more day to do my job. I thank him for allowing me to be myself.”
Some might not recognize this as a statement of worship, but that’s exactly what it is. Our work is our worship. Francisco is worshiping God by training, practicing, and pitching in the major leagues because that is where his talents and skills have taken him. So for him to thank the Creator and give him credit is the most natural thing he could do as a created human being. Actually, every player on the field is worshiping God by doing what he does; it’s just that they don’t all know that they are. Francisco knows, and this adds a spectacular element to his life. He’s not just getting by in life; he’s getting to do what he was meant to do.
Does this only apply to baseball players? Why should it? Why couldn’t it apply to anyone, doing any job? Can a computer programmer thank God for one more day to do her job? Can a CEO thank God for the skills and abilities to run a company? Can a clerk at Wal-Mart thank God for allowing him to be himself? Of course. That’s the unique nature of this perspective. It can apply to anyone or no one.
It’s really all up to us to see our lives as gifts of God for however long we get to live them on this earth. God’s not going to tap us on the shoulder and remind us of this every few hours. Indeed, you can live your whole life and never see it as a gift of God and an act of worship. But in this case, who loses?
Our lives should worship God anyway since we are all fearfully and wonderfully made. So why not get in on the act? Why not thank God for one more day to do your job? And while you’re at it, thank him for allowing you to be yourself.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Vacation was good. We did some shopping and LOTS of eating. It was lovely to see Gaga and Sharon but also nice to spend time with Mom and Gran Patti. I'm happily got all my fall and winter wardrobe purchased. I'm wicked glad to be done with that. I love fashion and clothing but hate to shop for clothing for myself. Wonder why.
Been thinking and reading a lot lately about purposeful living. All of this started because of an article I read in Relevent Magazine a while back. They of course talked about living a life a purpose for God but also living a life of purpose in other ways. One way was being more conscious of the little ways you can effect the environment. I thought about what that could mean for me. How I could in my daily life effect something so great. I came across a guy who has written a few books about just this subject. He is a really cool person and has lots of creative ideas on just this subject. His name is Danny Seo. Now, I'm just gonna stop you all right there. I know what your thinking and I can assure you that I'm not going to go crazy on you. Promise! Ok, back to Danny. His first book "Conscious Style Home: Eco-Friendly Living for the 21st Century" is way cool (I actually just bought it and am eagerly awaiting it's arrival in the mail). He actually redoes his parents house into a more eco friendly space. I love the idea. He repurposes things, he gives you great tips on donating unused items and all kinds of other cool stuff. The article I initially read about him gave a tour of his home (Which was killer cute) and showed how he has been able to be friendly to the environment but still live like a king. I know this isn't for everyone but it's something I find to be very interesting. Below are some links. One is Danny's blog. He's one of the editors of Country Home Magazine, has a sirus radio show each day and has a spot on one of the early morning tv shows called Simply Green. He also has two other books: "Simply Green Parties" & "Simply Green Giving". They both feature some really cool ideas. You can check those out here:
Also, here are some other links that give more info about Danny and his cute little house:
Enjoy these links and I'll chat with y'all again soon!
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
Next, something really cool happened to me today. I tend to journal after getting inspired by something. It just makes me feel good. I feel like I don't want to forget the feeling. Anyway, I was typing out my thoughts and wrote something that I hadn't even realized to be a truth. I just sat there and read over "my" words again and again. God spoke to me threw ME! I just started giggling right here at my desk. I was filled with this feeling I haven't had in a while. That wonderfuly addictive feeling that God is close to me. It's something I always know in my mind but when you encounter him in everyday life it's SO cool. He showed me a place in my life that I've been dressing fear up in a costume for myself. Making it seem to be something else but it was still just plain old fear. WOW! So then (as He often does with me at least) God gave me a song to "go" with my realization. I wanted to share the lyrics with you because they are incredibly inspiring in themselves. If you have a chance to actually hear the song, I would recommend it. Even if you don't like music.
No More Chains by Nicole Nordeman
How did I get locked up inside?
What's this that renders me paralyzed?
I lost myself in small pieces
It happened over time
I traded love for a heavy chain
Another link every other day
I pulled it up and down a mountain
It made me want to say?
No more chains No more chains
Big and small, watch them fall away
No more chains
Big and small, watch them fall away
I wonder now if the choice was mine
The door was open, I walked inside
Nobody had my arm twisted
Nobody made me stay
The face of freedom can show up small
A tiny crack in a prison wall
A song that rises up from silence
A voice that wants to say?
No more chains
I should let you give me wings
I should let you set me free
Monday, September 18, 2006
Friday, September 15, 2006
More big news, I found out my compensation adjustment yesterday and let me tell you all, it's a good one. You never really can tell how your manager feels you're truly performing till they throw a fat check at you. Really cool!
As previously mentioned, Gaga and Sharon are coming on Saturday. We've got a fun week ahead of us and I'm so looking forward to it. I've got three days off next week, so there won't be anything new and exciting here for a few days. I'll hopefully however come back with pictures to post and stories to tell.
Have a great weekend Everyone!
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
So kids...all you gotta do to post a comment to any of the posts you read here is click on the X comments link at the bottom of each one. You can leave me cute notes. It'll be fun. Promise!
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
by John Fischer
Restoring relationships is an important part of having them. As imperfect people, you can count on the fact that we will let each other down. That’s why truthfulness and forgiveness are an essential part of our life together.
It’s a commentary on our fast-paced mobile lifestyles that it often takes a death to bring family and friends together. At a memorial service I attended once for the wife of a worship leader who had served three churches in three different parts of the country, friends from all three areas came, at no small personal expense, to show their love and support. The huge turnout was, as much as anything, a testimony to this couple’s deep commitment to the people they had served, and it was an opportunity for many to remember a courageous woman and give something back to her husband and children.
It was also a time for me to be reunited with old friends who had been much more in my life when I lived closer to them. One in particular had some hard words for me. Some time ago he sent me an e-mail that had gone into considerable detail about changes in his life – personal things he was going through – and I had never answered it or even acknowledged receiving it. This had hurt him deeply and I could tell as he confessed to me his hurt and anger that he had built up a lot of resentment toward me. But at the same time, I could sense a big weight come off his shoulders as he conveyed his true feelings to me. By facing me honestly, he was rescuing what was valuable about our relationship and setting both of us free.
He could have been superficially nice to me at the memorial service and continued on in his resentment and anger, and I would have never known. I couldn’t have even asked his forgiveness if I hadn’t known I had hurt him. But by being honest and confrontational, he gave the Lord the opportunity to heal and restore. God can do wonders in our relationships as long as we face each other and tell the truth.
Jesus once said that if you bring an offering to the Lord and you are aware of something wrong in one of your relationships, you should set your offering aside and go get things straightened out with your brother or sister, then come back and worship. (Matthew 5:23-24) How we live in relationship with each other in the Body of Christ needs our attention, even before our worship. God is basically saying that we can’t be in fellowship with him and knowingly out of fellowship with each other. My friend did the right thing and we are both the better for it.
Monday, September 11, 2006
Slept a little late on Saturday but was up and showered by eight. Both of us. TOTALLY weird. Ran some errands (checked out house stuff at Home Depot) and then headed to Gran's for a fun filled day of shopping. Macy's was having a sale! Gran made out like a bandit, I however scored a cook book. Granted I got a great deal on it and it was one that I've wanted for a while. I was happy.
Sunday we just a lot of nonsense. Made some chili for lunch because it was totally a chili day. Rainy and grey out. Watched a movie. Read on my new book. Oh well, got another book actually on Sunday. The new Joyce Meyer book, Confident Woman. I haven't gotten that far into it but so far it's dynamite. I think I'm really going to enjoy it.
Only nine more days till I have three days off. Isn't it funny how we count the days down. I hope it's not rainy and gross while Gaga is here but who knows.
So it's Sept 11th. John had the news on this morning and it's all they talked about. Yesterday we watched V for Vendetta. Kinda creepy. If you haven't seen it, I would recommend it. Great movie. Weird though to watch it yesterday because it's about a terrorist in London. I normally hate movie like that but it was different than most. A lot of side story that still had to do with the main plot.
Anyway, back to the day. Mondays are always so...yuck.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
-Lemon & Honey Green Tea (They're the little packets. You just add them to water and you have this great drink and yes, they're portable. LOVE IT because it makes water not quite so watery.)
-Tab Energy (Yes, it's a drink too. I know but in my world of being almost physically chained to my desk, this is what I'm into People. It's great because it's energy without that ants under your skin feeling.)
-Quilted Handbags (It's this weird kinda granny but sorta cute thing. My new one is big, black and quilted. Oh, that almost sounds obscene!)
-Project Runway (I don't watch all that much TV these days but this one is on the DVR list for sure. What could better? It combines sewing, fashion, modeling and some really funny people. This season is pretty good. I'm crossing my fingers for Michael but I wouldn't be true to myself if I didn't mention I love Kayne. I know he's all crazy pageant dresses and way to much energy but I just can't help myself. He's fun.)
-Lost (In the spirit of TV, I'm addicted to Lost. I can't wait for the new season to start. You think I'm wild now, just wait. It gets better.)
-Black and White (Not sure what it is with me and the two fabulous colors but I'm hooked. I love the contrast I guess. Colors are great but how fancy and classic does one look in a great pair of black pants with a crisp white button down shirt? I mean come on! This also goes for the home. I love white sofa's, white flowers, black furniture.)
-Panera Bread Broccoli Cheese Soup (It's soup but oh so much more yummy than normal soup. Far superior.)
-Fall Weather (Really diggin the weather lately. Wish it would be this great all the time.)
-Little Black Hair Clippie-dos (Because believe it or not people, I actually almost have something of a mini pony going on. It's progress for me. My dad, I'm sure, is leaping out of his seat about now.)
-Blueprint Magazine (It's part of the Martha Stewart empire but way more fun. Great DIY tips for fashion and home. Great recipes and really great advice for storage and stuff. Only into their second issue as of now but cool things to come I'm sure.
-Cupcakes (They are mini cakes with brightly colored yummy icing. 'Nough said.)
-Shoes (This is vague, I know but if you know me at all you'll understand that it doesn't really matter what brand or style. I love them all. Like puppies.)
Ok, your turn. Post your "addiction" list because, well...It will be fun.
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
Why worry when you can meditate?
by John Fischer
ÂBlessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.Â (Psalm 1:1-2)
IÂm a chronic worrier. I come from a long line of worriers. A good deal of my conscious time is taken up with the act of worrying. According to Rick Warren, this means I would be good at meditation.
Meditation is focused thinking. It is not just for monks and clerics. David said that he loved to meditate day and night on the Word of God. Now this was also while he was running a kingdom, fighting a perpetual enemy on the battlefield, and at times, running for his life. didn'tidnÂt have a lot of time to sit with his legs crossed and go ÂOmmmmmm.Â That kind of meditation is meant to clear the mind of all thoughts. Biblical meditation is thinking focused on a particular aspect of God, a part of GodÂs Word, or a reminder of what he has done for you.
Worry is focused thinking as well. ItÂs focused on what I canÂt answer or solve about my situation. Worry, at least for me, is returning over and over again to a place where I am stuck. I must somehow negatively feed on that little flutter of panic each time I follow a path of worry to the same hopeless conclusion. These are thoughts that accompany me throughout the day. I donÂt sit down to worry. Worry is nagging negativity.
It would stand to reason that if I can do this kind of professional worrying while I go about my tasks for the day, then I could choose to meditate on GodÂs Word instead. Worry is usually all about what you canÂt do anything about anyway. ItÂs never productive. Imagine all that attention turned to God and his truth.
I have the feeling that if I learned to turn my chronic worrying into meditation, when I did actually sit down to do something about those things IÂm tempted to worry about, I might be in a much better frame of mind to find a solution.
Try it today. If you catch yourself worrying, turn your thoughts instead to God and his Word. Take a portion of Scripture and turn it over and over in your mind. Remember what God has done for you. Be thankful. Why worry when you can meditate?
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
Did some shopping over the weekend. Not that it's headline news (If you were to ask John it's all he's heard about for three days) but I got the CUTEST handbag on Saturday. Just what I was looking for. It's always so fun to actually find what you've envisioned in your head.
In other news, how bloody fabulous is this weather, People! OMG! It's been like 70 everyday. I'm in fall sweaters and cute pants already. Yay for me, for sure!
Up and coming events include: Gaga and Sharon travel to KC on the 16th. I'm taking a few days of vacation while their here. Should be great and it's always nice to see them.
Can't wait for Granny to land back in the states. Only four more days! Hurry home woman! We miss you a pantload!
Friday, September 01, 2006
Not sure what really prompted me to start a blog but it should be lots of fun. I'm thinking it will be great for family members that live far away to see pics and read about what is going on with John and I.
It's gonna be a grand journey folks. Welcome to my world!