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Friday, September 21, 2007

Winning the Race

I just love my church, Red Rocks Church in Golden, Colorado. The pastors and people who attend are just so “real”. It’s a church filled with young couples and lots of college students (we are PACKED Fall through Spring, and most other times as well). Honestly, I’m probably in the upper ¼ age-wise, and I’m not yet 40! But, I guess I’m still young at heart, because I feel so at home there. I love it too that both my teenage boys enjoy going and sitting with me in church.

This past Sunday, we had our second message in a series titled “Evolve”. It’s about evolving our walk with Christ, and I was really moved. I have been growing closer to the Lord through prayer, but in the craziness of life, I have not been as diligent about reading His Word on a daily basis. Yet, when I do, I am significantly challenged and changed. I have now moved back all of my appointments at work so that I have at least ½ hour in the mornings before meetings start. I work at least 60 hours a week, so I think I can afford some time for me at the start of my day. I receive a daily devotional by email from Proverbs 31 Ministries that will be perfect to get me going. And while I always listen to Christian radio in the car, I’m sure there are good devotionals on tape or CD out there that I can plug into as well. I am so excited!!

Now my next challenge is to spend some time writing freelance. I have a course on Copywriting for the Christian Market (through the American Writers Institute), but I haven’t had time to work on it. Between work, homeschool lesson planning and grading, blogging (which also feeds my soul), watching my boys play sports, fixing up our rental property and showing it to prospective lessees, and all the other stuff of life, I have not found a way to fit this in. I also want to write some articles to see if I can get them published, but that hasn’t happened either. Whew…I am tired just thinking about it all. And I have to be really careful not to lock myself in my office on my computer, away from my husband and kids. It is so easy to get lost in cyberspace or even in my own thoughts and musings, and to miss out on “real life”. How do all you other bloggers do it?

Listening to the radio, I heard a quote that originated with Rick Warren in his book Purpose Driven Life, which was “do not confuse activity with productivity”. There is so much that fills our day, and much of it feels important and necessary…but it is really? Is how we are choosing to spend our time truly productive in the sense that it moves us into closer relationship with the Father? Do our activities honor God? Also, in the day-to-day of life and work, do our activities move us toward our goals? At the end of the day do we have a sense of accomplishment, fulfillment, and have we contributed toward those feelings in others’ lives? Finally, what are the goals we are working toward? Do we have a “purpose-driven life” or are we allowing life to just happen?

At the end of every day, I am often amazed at how busy I was. I run out of daylight long before I run out of work to do. I usually run out of steam, too, before I am finished with all of the tasks at hand. There’s a funny saying that is so true…”the problem with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat”. I don’t want to win the rat race; I want to win the prize that God has prepared for me. 1 Corinthians 9:24-25 says, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.” Part of our strict training (which, to me, means “daily”) is the discipline of reading God’s Word to hear His instruction, praying to the Lord and listening for His guidance, and serving the Lord in the areas He has called us. And, oh the beauty of the crown we will then get to wear…the crown of love and compassion (Psalm 103:4), the crown of blessings (Proverbs 10:6), the crown of everlasting joy (Isaiah 35:10), and the crown of righteousness (2 Timothy 4:8).

Isn’t it wonderful to be a child of the King? May I run the race toward Him…the finish line.

1 comment:

Coach J said...

Amen, sister. I want to run that way, too!
Does activity mean greater productivity? To be productive for God, we must do those thing(s) He's called us to do. And do those well. We can do so many things good, but we do injustice to the real ministry He's called us to if that's what we decide to do. We've got to know what to put aside, and what to pick up.
I told you that I just finished Nehemiah. The 10th or 11th chapter-I can't remember which right now {blush}-really speaks to us that sometimes God just calls us to BE in a certain place. When they drafted people to move back into the city of Jerusalem, their ministry was to live in that city and go about everyday business so that the surrounding cities would see that the Word of the Lord had come to pass. All they had to do was live their lives.
Blogging can become an addiction, and we must be careful not to get so wrapped up in cyberspace, that that's all we do. :) I'm preachin' to myself, now!! I have to be careful to pay attention to my family and their needs before I get busy "talking" with all my new friends. And, I can't let it interfere with my ministry. When basketball season is up and going heavy, my blogging should significantly decrease. And that's the way it should be.
I'm so glad you have a good church family, with "real" people. Being real is what Jesus Christ can use to minister to others.