Growing up in the church I heard a lot of stories about what it would be like when we get to heaven. And then I went to seminary and realized we aren't really sure what happens when we get there other than it is supposed to be really cool. And apparently we will get to talk to Jesus and I can't help, but wonder how that will work. Because I'm guessing the line to talk to Him will be very long. Maybe we will all have to take a number between 1-6,000,000,000,000,000. And of course they will leave out the number 666. Well regardless, I have a few questions that I would like to ask Him after I thank Him for all that He has done for me.
My first question, especially in the wake of all that happened last week, would be, "Why did you allow horrible things to happen to great people?" I have heard several sermons claiming to have the answer to that one and it will be interesting to see if they were remotely close.
My second question would be, "Why was life so tough?" Now don't get me wrong, I have had a great life compared to most...but it has still been very tough at times (like now). And I know that many will say it is because tough times make tough people, but what a load of crappola! Because I don't feel tough when times are tough? I feel tired and beat up, and discouraged. So I don't know what Jesus will say to that one, but my guess is that it will have nothing to do with trying to toughen me up. He may talk about how he had to walk thousands of miles in bad sandals, take a bath in dirty lakes, hang out with 12 morons, poop in the woods, and then die on a cross. And at that point I will change the subject and thank Him for my great life.
If I get three questions then I might ask, "How do you feel about what we did with your church in America?" I'm not being sarcastic when I wonder how He feels about the new trends of having multi-site campuses and spending millions on marketing & having incredible buildings and high tech facilities. He may very well say, whatever it took to get the message out was fine with me. I have just always wondered about that one. I always feel like we (meaning me too) have this whole church thing messed up. So although it will be after the fact...I would just like to know what he really wanted us to do.
After I'm done with my questions then I'm going to go look for my grandfather Henry Russell. I never got to meet him, but I hear that he and I were a lot alike except he was skinny. Apparently he had a great metabolism. Wait...that is another question I would like to ask Jesus, how come I didn't get a faster metabolism and why did you make all the good tasting food so fattening?
The number one search that brings people to this website is "My wife is reading 50 Shades of Grey." And some searches are, "I don't want my wife to read 50 Shades of Grey!" Well guys this story isn't going to make you feel any better, because the book of rough love is now available for free!
From my script for The What are You Kidding Me Stories:
The Damson Dene Hotel may need to change its name to The Damned Dene Hotel because they have removed all…all of the Gideon Bibles out of their guest rooms and replaced them. They have replaced them with, ready for it, with Fifty Shades of Grey!
They have decided to share the story of Christian rather than the story of Christianity. The owner of the hotel said that he wanted to put in a book that the people would actually read. As you can imagine, there have been some complaints but there have also been a lot…a lot of silver ties being purchased from the gift shop.
To those of you that were hoping that I was going to announce an upcoming divorce & marriage to a man I'm sorry to disappoint, but that isn't my secret. I'm very happy with the lovely Amy and I'm still 98% heterosexual (2% reaction to Matthew McConaughey)! My secret is that I'm in the worst shape of my life. I'm talking about physically. Yes I started the year off great, but about 1 month ago it all went to hell in a hand basket. I don't even know what that phrase really means, but it sounds appropriate for how I feel.
The reason for this brief post is to let you know that being out of shape physically can cause you A LOT of problems. Now I know that sounds like a no brainer, but I want you to understand, especially you youngins, that if you have your weight within a somewhat normal range...keep it that way! I haven't gained a ton but in the last 3 years I have put on about 20 pounds and I am amazed at how horrible my body feels in the evenings and in the morning. Thus it makes it tougher to move around the way that I should be able to move. Part of the problem has been that I took on a part-time job about a month ago and it involves a lot of lifting and standing on my feet. And because I haven't kept my weight in check and because I have done very little resistance training...I am paying a dear price.
My wife has agreed to help me fight this battle and to get my life back in order, but I welcome your prayers. I am going to implement some of the Body for Life principles along with Weight Watchers. I started eating healthier as of this morning and I'll hit the weights and cardio around noon. And that is my last point, if you haven't started resistence training (lifting weights & calisthenics) then start today. If you have started then don't stop! I'm having difficulties performing daily activities that should quite honestly be a "piece of cake" for me. And it has A LOT to do with my lack of renitence training in the last several years and the extra 20 pounds. I'm learning these lessons the hard way...when you hit your forties you need to have your muscles toned so that it doesn't hitback. There is no reason to feel beat down in your forties...it is the new thirties.
I went to see my doctor this last week and he said, "balance". Apparently my life is out of balance and that wasn't really news to me, but sometimes balance isn't possible. In other words, if you or I find ourselves being hit with one of the many storms of life then we get thrown off balance. We may have to work more or less, we may have to rest more or less, and etc. However, the doc was right...we all need to work on being balanced. We need to do all things in moderation instead of a few things to excess. So that is my challenge to you and myself this week...how can we at least attempt to get balanced?
How much of your time is spent working, excercising, spending with family, spending with friends, and in just resting? I love hearing your thoughts so please post a comment! and my prayer is that we can all live life to the fullest!
I am beyond stressed out at this time in my life for reasons that I won't share with you, because it really isn't that interesting. However, I had somewhat of a personal breakthrough today while I was jiggling....I mean jogging. I have been allowing life to run me instead of me running my life. You know what I mean?
I mean that I have been allowing situations or people to determine how I feel inside of my heart and soul. Life is full of difficult situations and difficult people who can, if we allow them, make life what? DIFFICULT! So while we must deal with the difficult situations and people in life we can't allow it to affect how we feel mentally, physically, and spiritually. I know it is easier said than done, but we really do have to realize and accept that we can't control some circumstances and other people. In other words, we need to meditate or pray and seek guidance, but don't internalize it to the point that it affects our well being. I know that is a little vague so I will process this and come up with some tips on how to release our stress into the universe instead of into our hearts and souls.
I noticed that #Believe in America is now trending on twitter, and it made me ask myself the obvious question, "Do I still believe in America?" And the answer is absolutely! This is still a great country and things will get better. And remember that both the Republicans and the Democrats are trying to scare you too death right now. They want you to think that one guy runninf for President is the Savior and one is Satan.
The truth of the matter is...both men running for president want what is best for America. The only question that you and I need to ask is, "Which one of these guys has the balls and brains to turn this country around?" I'm not going to give you my opinion on that because you shouldn't care about what I think. And don't listen to anyone else either...especially those in the media. Go do your research and pick your guy and then vote. If you and I don't vote then we can't complain, and if there is one thing we love to do in America it is complain!
My good friend Matt Hoover, who was season two's winner of The Biggest Loser, asked me to buy the book by Joel Osteen called, Every Day A Friday. Now to be honest with you if anyone else had told me to buy the book then I wouldn't have done it, but Matt is a guy's guy! In other words, he is the dude you knew in college who crushed beer cans on his head, chewed on nails, and you just prayed you didn't piss him off. I don't want to speak for him, but I'm willing to guess that he would have never gone on a show to lose weight had their not been big time prize money. So when a guy like that says a book is helping to make a positive impact on his life then I want to read it!
The title comes from the fact that most people live for the weekend. They just do their best to get through Monday-Thursday, and then they change their attitude and level of happiness on Friday. I'm only a few pages into Every Day A Friday and I enjoy the simplicity of Osteen's writing, because he isn't trying to impress the reader with big words or even deep theological thoughts. He is simply bringing out one great point and that is the fact that we all need to start living in the moment. Matt and I have one thing in common and that is we are always looking to conquer the next big event in life. And while there is absolutely nothing wrong with setting big goals...we can't let that keep us from enjoying where we are today. Like many of you, Matt and I both have small children and great spouses, and yet there are way too many times we catch ourselves not focus on them. Why? Because we are distracted from the present by the what ifs of the future. In our minds we are already working on the next big thing, worrying about the next contract, dreaming of another promotion, or simply in another world.
Thought for The Day: Stop living for the weekend and look around you for the gifts and blessings of today.