We are biking around Savannah’s downtown squares tonight. Must quit eating fat. Must move more. Moving about Savannah sans automobile is incredible. Might post pictures. My tires are flat but I’m borrowing a beach cruiser from a neighbor. Do it. Savannah in spring time is prettier than your city. Embrace that.
Best line I’ve heard in a long time – “We need to start rethinking adoption in terms of ‘a family for the child’ NOT ‘a child for the family.’ That has been our journey. We first sought adoption because we wanted a child(ren) and couldn’t seem to do it with good ol’ biology. But now our horizon has expanded to see that kids need homes more than we need kids. And foster parents (the good ones, ones not doing it for a check) are heroes. The common, and understandable, push back for many is that it would be too hard and heart-breaking to get close to a child and then let them go. (see above quote)…in other words…it’s about the child. You, I, we are probably doing just fine. They may not.
Genius tends to both ostracize and synergize. To ostracize means to alienate. If 5% or 10% of the people you know think your idea or general way of doing things is stupid, going to fail, or maybe even dangerous…you may be on the right track. To synergize means to brings people together to do something better than they could do apart…even if you added all the parts together. Genius – brilliant ideas, strong leaders, movements, projects – should thrill and annoy equally. If everyone usually thinks you or your ideas are “fine” you need to be worried about being mediocre. And mediocrity IS dangerous. AND each of us has a genius streak – something for which we have a passion and ability.
A lot of folks my age (or not) are rejecting formalized religion for various reasons. Even fellow Christians who would agree with the Church on all basic points are opting out of regular church meetings (services, gatherings, celebrations, et al). They are looking for more “organic” forms of following Jesus. I guess the operating definition of “organic” seems to be something along the lines of natural, unforced, free range, leaderless, etc. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about love, generosity, prayer, worship, service and/or wisdom-passing happening spontaneously. It should. We should hear about a need and seek to help. We should be teaching our kids outside of a classroom setting. We should be neighborly and love our neighbors. But to throw out regular times of meeting is a pipe-dream. I have no hope, nor should I, that I/we can maintain a completely random, spontaneous life. So, am I saying that God only shows up at 10:30am on Sunday at our church gathering? No. Am I saying that God is more present at those gatherings? Not really. But one thing I like about our 10:30am Sunday worship time is that everyone knows that no matter how crazy their week is or how chaotic life gets…we’ll be there. Someone will. Actually a lot of us will. The same goes for a regularly scheduled weekly small group, pickup basketball game, or mommy group. Unless you like it 100% organic…which means you might get together with others…unless you don’t. Celebrate the spontaneous and natural but don’t knock the regularly scheduled times.
Filed under: Fighting Boredom
Spiritual disciplines such as fasting, prayer, study, and solitude are the pursuits of many Christians. Richard Foster’s classic “Celebration of Discpline” is a standard for many faithful. I encourage everyone to pursue them and make them a part of your life. Restraint helps you enjoy freedom. Routine helps you enjoy spontaneity. Or you can just have multiple children. Like a monk or nun, you will HAVE to get up at dark hours and perform mundane, daily (hourly?) rituals. And you won’t have any choice. You won’t be able to hit the snooze. You won’t be able to call it in. You won’t be able to start (restart) on Monday. Kids have to be fed, changed, attended to, blocked, and reminded. And you have to watch your words – angry ones, foul ones, strong ones, stupid ones. Yeah…so…ok that’s it.
A friend asked why he always says “cool” or “nice” when describing something that he knows is “amazing.” I responded that “we are a constantly underwhelmed generation.” He asked “why is that?” This was my response: I think we’ve created a constantly cool world (or at least that perception that is must be) and therefore awesome is the new normal…therefore anything awesome is just normal…but anything less than awesome (like reading, thinking, libraries, or pbs) are lame. And we don’t do lame. We only do awesome. We’ve done awesome so much that anything real seems lame (like having a conversation or eating an apple). It’s like bleached, processed sugar…except everything.
Filed under: Fighting Boredom
Our friends moved to our neighborhood before we did. When we helped them move in were were like, “we love your house and this neighborhood.” Every week we would go to it, by it or through it and really like the feel of the neighborhood. 4 years ago we finally sold our house and moved. We were a little wary at first because the market was so-so and we wondered if we were making a big mistake. But we found a house in that neighborhood that we loved and it worked out. We were a 2 minute or less (2 block) walk from their house and they had kids our kid’s age. Nice. A year ago, on the same day, good friends moved both 4 doors down from us and next door to aforementioned friends. Now our neighborhood had 4 houses with our church friends within walking distance. More kids, more borrowed eggs, more babysit-sharing, more of a lot of stuff. We affectionately called it the “compound.” Do we see each other every day? No. Almost. Do we share lawnmowers? Yes. Do we respect boundaries? Of course. And now, our “house girl,” Melody (the college girl living with us) is getting married soon and they’ve already rented the house 3 doors down from us. Sweet! Now they can take turns making the communal koolaid. And we’ll help watch their doggie, Zahra.