Happy post Thanksgiving! I hope your day went well, with lots of peace, joy and enjoyable food 🙂 A few days ago, I posted about how I don’t really care for cooking turkey because of the litany of failed attempts my family has endured over many years. Well, I’m happy to report that yesterday’s turkey was totally tasty! It wasn’t burned, not too dry, not undercooked nor any of the other ways that I’ve ruined turkeys over many years – yahoo!!!
So here’s some encouragement. Think of something that you’ve been trying to get good at for a long time, then consider a few things:
perhaps the lessons you’ve learned from the failures just helped you to understand better what doesn’t work
be thankful that you don’t have to make the same list of mistakes – you can make new ones
perhaps you next attempt will be the one that brings you success
if you next attempt doesn’t succeed consider that you’re one step further from failure & closer to success 🙂
If the truth be known, I have to really mind my attitude in the holiday season. Unfortunately, I find it easy to get cranky, impatient & snarky. I tend to try & justify this stuff saying I’m tired, I have lots of extra work, etc. But I want to do better this year & I want to manage my attitude more than letting it manage me. For me, the best way to accomplish this is to ask God for help as frequently as possible, along w memorizing a few Bible verses. Attitude affects altitude 🙂
With Thanksgiving popping up in less than 48 hours, I am facing my age-old nemesis, the turkey. I think that I’ve figured out almost every way to ruin a turkey (undercooking, overcooking, offering a burnt sacrifice, along with many other accidents). So I’m totally keen to throw in a lasagna & call it good 🙂
But alas, I will do the traditional turkey & there’s a good chance that I’ll get it right this year – hope springs eternal. And this is exactly my point: hope springs eternal. Just because I’ve had a litany of turkey traumas doesn’t mean that this year is going to be another “challenge.” After a 1,000 failed attempts with his light bulb invention, Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
My daughter’s basketball game was postponed on Thurs night because of weather complications, so I’ve got some time to work on my self-control efforts (her next game isn’t until Dec). In the meantime, watch this video for how I think about myself with basketball (laugh, laugh, chuckle, chuckle)
Unimportant, irrelevant, insignificant and altogether meaningless. Sometimes I have conversations and interactions with people where I try to figure out where we might have some common ground and find something about which we can both enjoy discussing. When I talk with my friends whose kids attend the same school with my kids, we often find the common ground related to school stuff. When I’m speaking in a church or at a conference and connecting with people in these environments, we often talk about God and the Bible. But not everyone wants to talk about school stuff, or Bible stuff, knitting, or how to get in better shape, snowboarding, or Soren Kierkegaard or God or prostitutes having babies that need safety and protection, . . . . We all have things that we are passionate about that aren’t interesting or meaningful to other people. But here’s the totally cool piece:
All of you is meaningful to God. God is altogether interested in your life and everything in which you’re interested. God has the capacity to be fully engaged, interested and participatory in every area and interest of your life! All of you is meaningful!!
The other day, I received some really bad news & it was very discouraging & rather disheartening. It was interesting to watch my reaction because I did something kind of absent-mindedly that I would not have normally done. I started to remember things during the day for which I was thankful. I started thanking God for getting the kids to school on time. I thanked God for helping me to not be rude to someone who had said something hateful to me. I thanked God for getting to eat lunch at home & for the nice coffee there. I started to thank God for all kinds of things & shortly thereafter, rather than being depressed about the negative news that I had received, my heart was lots more encouraged, lite & even loving.
Being thankful is a helpful lifestyle & not merely a seasonal celebration 🙂
I went to my daughters basketball game & embarrassed myself pretty well. Thankfully, my daughter isn’t stressed out & she enjoyed getting to play & have some fun with her team, which is great. In the meantime, I need help. I need to get some help on how to enjoy her games without getting so massively competitive. Of course I want to attend her games & of course I don’t want to be that freak parent who can’t control themselves. So I’m working with God in this new area. I’m asking for God to give me help, self-control, discipline, strength & grace.
Lets always be open to exploring new opportunities to trust & lean into God.
She has another game tomorrow night, so I’ll keep you posted ,)
I read this morning about how Samuel was working on picking the next king for Israel after Saul & was being introduced to Jesse’s sons, from the oldest to the youngest. When Samuel first met Jesse’s oldest son, Samuel thought he was a shew-in, but God quickly corrected Samuel & told him not to make decisions based on external appearances – God looks at the heart & isn’t influenced by what’s on the outside (tall, handsome, suave, etc). After meeting supposedly all of Jesse’s sons, Samuel didn’t pick any of them. Finally, Jesse mentioned that his last son, the smallest & maybe the least likely or eligible, was out herding sheep. Once they brought in David, Samuel knew he was to be the next king. David was the least likely & seemingly most ineligible – tiny but mighty. In my mind, tiny by mighty, was often a theme in David’s life (Goliath, fighting the Philistines, running from Saul, overcoming Absalom’s treachery & more). Tiny can most certainly be mighty 🙂
I was reading this morning in Hebrews 12 about how God corrects, just like a loving father corrects & disciplines his children. I used to hate the whole idea of correction & being disciplined. If the truth be told, there has been an arrogance in me about receiving correction. In the past, I had the mindset that I did things so well that I didn’t need correction – which of course set me up for some very serious confrontations and painful corrections. Being corrected & discipline isn’t fun. It hurts. But here are a few points in Hebrews 12 that have helped me about receiving correction:
correction is evidence of love – Heb 12:6; no love, no correction
God’s correction is for our benefit – Heb 12:10
when God corrects you, decide to endure & change: don’t faint when God corrects you – Heb 12:5
God’s correction yields good fruit in our lives (peaceful fruit of righteousness) – Heb 12:11
I recently used a parking meter for an appt that I was in and I skimped on the meter. Sure enough, my meeting went longer than I expected & voila, I found the ever lovely parking ticket on my windshield. As I looked at the ticket, I figured out that if I would have added 50cents to the meter, I could have avoided the $25 ticket. I hate making these kinds of mistakes – where I try to skimp with time or money & wind up spending more; hate those kinds of mistakes.
So to get the most out of this experience, here are my learning points that might be helpful to you as well:
margin – give yourself some cushion so that you don’t spend more time & money than is necessary
grace – berating yourself for mistakes is wasted emotional energy; learn the lesson & move on
change – repeating the same errors is stupid; learning & changing is smart 🙂