Friday, June 15, 2012

My purpose for living

This has always been one of those areas where I am not sure when to draw the line and make a distinction. As a Christian, my purpose for living is to serve Christ and to help others find their way to Him. But living for this life is also necessary. What order do I put my priorities in, and how much time should I give to each one?

This topic again revisited my thinking several days ago as I was preparing for my classes at a Bible camp, and as I was doing my morning Bible reading today. It may shock you to learn what realization I have come to. I have realized that God is not, nor should He be a priority in my life.That may sound like a terrible thing to say; but I believe it is the correct mindset for a Christian to have.

When I have priorities, I separate them based upon importance and assign each one varying lengths of my attention corresponding to their priority rank. For example: I would give my #1 priority 60% of my time, my #2 priority 15% of my time, my #3 priority 8% of my time, and so on. The thing is that I believe God is so important that He shouldn’t just be designated a measured slot of my day. God is not a priority, God is life! Whatever I do for the Church, for myself, for my job, and for others; should all be done with God as the foundation of my focus. Sure God doesn’t care about what I eat for breakfast, or what color my socks are; but there should never be a moment in my day where I switch the “living for God” sector of my mind off. I should always be open to thoughts about how I can be a better person, and about how I can help God’s kingdom here on earth.

No I am not saying that I aspire to become a sort of modern-day monk who ignores all the attractions of earth so that I may study and teach. I don’t believe that is the most productive way to witness to others; and being human, I couldn’t do it. I need some pleasures and hobbies to keep me sane and my disposition pleasant. Plus certain things of this life can bring us closer to God, like having a family or enjoying this planet which He has created. Also, certain hobbies can bring us closer to others and allow our Christ-like attitudes to influence them, and or words to teach them. The point is that after I am gone, I want people to think of me, and say that I lived for God rather than for this life.


”For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself; for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.”
-Romans 14:7-8

”Live,
I want to live inspired
Die,
I want to die for something
Higher than myself.
Live and die for anyone else.
The more I live I see
This life's not about me”
-Anberlin

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

BONSAI

Two of the things I brought up with me from Kansas are my little bonsai-trees-to-be.

Bonsai Redbud
bonsai hand

They are not actually bonsai yet. I need to let them grow until winter, and then prune their roots while they are dormant.

bonsai redbud

Bonsai Oak
bonsai oak hand
I
grew this guy from an acorn which fell from one of our oak trees in Kansas.
bonsai oak

They may look small now, but just you wait…. Actually, I am hoping they always look small. Smile

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Getting use to my surroundings

One of the things I have always enjoyed is long and rejuvenating walks. Evening walks are best because the humidity and temperatures are low, and the colors are amazing. All my life I have lived in cities; so I would try to take my walks to the edge of town, a quiet park, or along some train tracks.The funny thing is that usually I spent half of my time just getting to a place like that where I could enjoy my walk. Things are different now though. Now for the first time in my life I live in the country! I need only walk to the end of my driveway to find myself on a beautifully scenic country road. I have already gone on several nice long walks since moving one and a half weeks ago. I would like to share some images from the walk I took yesterday evening.

Looking down the road…
Road
One thing I love about this part of Minnesota, is that it contains a healthy amount of open spaces and pastures. This makes it a lot easier for me to adjust after spending most of my life in Kansas.

I still can’t believe I live here…
road zoom
I think this view will look nice come fall.

Daisies along the fence
flowers

Sunset view from Steam Boat Road
sunset

Freshly planted power poles
Wires
I am not extremely thrilled that there are signs of civilization being installed in the pasture down the road. But the sunset’s colors were so superb that it was hard to not enjoy the view.

A final look at the day’s final colors
Red Skies and pipeline
One of the horses grazing (I’m not sure which one)

And these are only the views from a short walk down my road... Smile This is such a wonderful place to live!

Monday, June 4, 2012

My thoughts about Owl City’s good thoughts

I really felt the need to share this blog post from Adam Young of Owl City. It is weird to put a link to a blog post in a blog post, so I will just paste what he wrote here, and I will put the actual web link at the bottom after some of my own thoughts.

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Ebullient

I want so badly to discover who and what God intends me to be because I want every second to count. I want to be thrilled out of my mind because of who Jesus is, what He’s done and how alive and real and astonishing He is that I can’t even keep from talking about it, my love for Him just keeps coming up in conversation. I want to be so alive and ebullient that I’m unshakable to the point that no allure of the world can pull me into apathy or impassivity. In reality I get to dream and write songs and make music and travel the world and meet people and change lives and I love every second of it but I want the tremendous joy I find in doing these things to pale in comparison to the joy and splendor and satisfaction I can experience in God. I want Him to wake me up and keep me awake because more than anything, I want my personality and my character to be His means of expression. I just want to love and follow Jesus, I don’t want anything else out of life.

“For you died and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.”
Col 3:3

======================================================

It may be easier for me to say this since I am not very well off financially; but living my life for Christ is by far the most important thing to me. Sure I would love to have a newer and more reliable car, a nice large piece of land with a sturdy house on it to live in, and enough money that I could travel to anyplace in the world; but when my head clears I realize that God has already given me so much, and is offering me a whole lot more if I just follow him.

Needless to say, I still wouldn’t mind having all of those earthly things I mentioned. Smile And I will work hard so that I may have a comfortable life on earth, and so that I can provide for my family some day. But I have prayed many times for God to prevent me from ever being really successful financially, unless I can continue to remember and focus upon what is really important in life.

To whomever may be reading this, I would love to hear your thoughts on this!


Here is the web link to the Owl City blog:
http://owlcityblog.com/2012/06/04/ebullient/