Friday, May 30, 2008

Rain out

Well, today my weekly golf outing was rained out. We had gathered to try a few holes, but the weather did not cooperate. So three of us headed down to a local diner for coffee and breakfast.

We sat there for about an hour, me sipping on my coffee, the others eating a nice breakfast, talking about everything we could think of. It was a wonderful time - sitting back, laughing enjoying each others company - and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something. Just enjoying the moment.

As I was driving back to the office, I started thinking that we, as a society, don't always do enough of that - sitting, talking, enjoying each other. We turn on the tv and tune out those around us. We keep looking at our watches, wonderfin where we have to be and how fast we have to get there. We just don't take the time to sit, and be, and really treasure the time we have with others.

One of the themes shown throughout scripture is how people take time before they make decisions. They pray, talk with others, and trust that God will lead them in the right direction. What if we did more of that today? What if instead of trying to rush a decision to make an arbitrary deadline, we actually sat down, talked with others, and prayed about the decision we needed to make? What if ...

So today, I was reminded again that making the time, and talking with others, was something I need to do more of, for it is the relationships in life that are so important and need to be treasured - and when we slow down, pray, and talk with others - who knows what direction God will lead us in our lives.

So may we all be slowed down. May we all have the opportunity to sit with others and talk. May we all be blessed by God as we go about searching for where he is leading us.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

I Saw God Today

I am a huge country music fan. I love the music, the lyrics, the style, etc. One of my favorite artists is George Strait. He has a new song out entitled "I Saw God Today." It is a great song about see the hand of God in both the big and the little things.

I was listening to this song late last night before bed, and started to think about all the places I saw God in the previous day - the time Sierra grabbed my hand without me asking for it, the person we picked up some garbage in the street, the joy of watching Sierra and her grandmother plant flowers in the front yard and the list goes on and on.

God is active in so many and different ways every day of our lives. Sometimes we miss seeing him because we are running, not paying attention, or just consumed by the busy-ness of our lives. But even when we don't see him, he is still there - doing what God does - loving, building up, caring for, blessing, etc.

So today - where have you seen God? What has he been doing in and around your life? Take a moment and celebrate the gifts of God by seeing where he is and what he is doing with you. May we all see God each and every day of our lives.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008


A couple of weeks ago Sierra started something new. For quite a while she has had a little nightlight in her room, but lately that has not been enough. She now "needs" to have the bathroom light on to shine a little extra light in her room as she goes to sleep. Some nights, when we go to turn the light off after she has fallen asleep, we will hear her cry out "No, no, no, I cannot see." And the light stays on longer.

Light represents safety for her. When the light is on, there is she is more comfortable and the darkness is not as scary. When looking at life through the eyes of a child, it is no wonder that the light/darkness images appear in the gospels as much as they do. Darkness is the scary stuff in life - evil, chaos, frightening things - and light is the good stuff - hope, peace the presence of God.

We all go through times of darkness in our lives. We walk through those "darkest valleys" often fearing what may be lurking out there and where we may be going.

But we have the ultimate nightlight in our lives as well. That wonderful, never-ending presence of God who brings the light of his presence, grace, and love to us in amazing ways. Sometimes our darkenss may be shattered by a call from someone unexpected; sometimes it may be broken by the loving touch of a friend; and sometimes it may disappear with a God moment either big or small that tells us that God is right here, with us now, and blessing us with what we need to make it every day.

So may you see that sliver of light shining in your life. May your darkness give way to the light of God. And may you always be blessed with the knowledge that you are loved, cared for and needed by the one who created all and loves you to the end.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


One of my weaknesses is coffee - and I mean good coffee and some of the fun flavors that go with it. Every once in awhile I will make a trip to the local Starbucks for a Mocha and sit back and enjoy that treat.

Yesterday Jennifer was tied up all day with sermon writing and a wedding, so Sierra and I had the day together. We did some cleaning, since my mom has come to visit for a week, picked up some supplies, and played at a park. Then we made a trip to Starbucks. Sierra loves to go there as well, because of the Strawberries and Creme drink she gets as a treat occasionally.

After we got our drinks, we went home and sat in the backyard, enjoying the sunshine, our drinks, and our time together. It was a wonderful morning.

As we were sitting on the deck, I looked over at her as she had this little drink that looked massive in her hands, sipping through a straw, sitting at her princess table, and I got a wee bit emotional. This little girl, full of energy and always wanting to please her dad, is growing up so fast. It seems like just yesterday when I sat rocking her in my arms trying to get her to stop crying and go to sleep, so I could get some sleep.

When we finished we went back inside and she helped to clean the house, wiping tables, picking up, and trying to fold my clothes. As I watched her I was reminded of the words Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me."

We are all God's children, and God is that loving father who watches over us, and I am sure gets emotional, as we grow up. He sees us try new things, sometimes for the better, sometimes not. He weeps with us when we are in pain. He celebrates with us when we are happy and filled with joy. But most of all, he loves us, for we are his children and we always will be.

So today, as Sierra plays with her grandma, and runs around with all that energy I wish I could bottle up for myself, may we all know that we are loved unconditionally by God. May we celebrate that love, and grow in our relationship with him. For we are loved, cared for, and needed by the one who created all.

Friday, May 23, 2008


So, for the past few days I have been battling against one of those wonderful spring colds. And I am one of those sterotypical men who has a hard time admitting he is sick tries to do everything anyway, and takes longer to get better. Sound familiar to anyone?

So as I have been sitting around, hacking up a lung, and contemplating my own mortality, I spent a lot of time thinking about God moments. Over the past few weeks here we have been watching a number of NOOMA videos - they are videos by a pastor who brings faith and life together in a very powerful way. Every time I watch one of these videos I am reminded of the numerous God Moments that take place in our lives. These are times when we see God active in our lives and in the lives of people around us.

You see, God is very active in the world he created. He is active in helping us discern the gifts he has given us, he is active in the people we meet, he is active in how we serve others, he is just active. He is not some diety that sits in heaven and just watches as we go about our lives, getting a good kick out of how we mess things up. Rather, he gets down and dirty with us - lifting us up when we cannot make it on our own, and celebrating with us as we have seasons of joy in our lives.

But sometimes we miss the God moments. I think this happens when we get those blinders on and have a very narrow view of what is happening around us. In doing this, we miss the big picture, we miss the amazing things God is doing because it is out of our line of sight.

So today I pray that we may all have our eyes opened and see the amazing works of God in our lives and in the lives of those around us. May we be reassured of God's never-ending presence with us. And may we all be blessed with abundant God moments in our lives.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Gift of Healing

In our worship services today we had a healing service. This is a time when people are invited to come forward for laying on of hands and prayers for healing. This is a really powerful service, as people come forward, lifting up different struggles that they and their loved ones are facing.

It is on days like that this that I am reminded, in a very dynamic way, just how much pain there is in the world. People are struggling with health issues, family issues, spiritual issues, etc. And when they come forward, I see faces that are filled with pain as well as hope - hope that God really will act in their lives and empower them to make it through the struggles that they are facing.

And we all face so many different struggles in our lives. We all are in need of God's healing touch. We all desire to have that safe community where we can come, as the broken people we are, and be lifted up with love and compassion.

So tonight, as I reflect back on the day, my thoughts revolved around the community I am blessed to be a part of. For it is in this community, this body of Christ, where I continually see the Spirit of God blowing in and through so many different saints. I truly beleive that God is at work here, and what he is doing is amazing and will reap rewards for generations to come. May we all know that there is a place and a God who desires to help us grow, heal, and experience his life-giving presence.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Life Steps

So, what do you want to do with your life?

This is a question many graduates are getting this time of year. I remember being asked this numerous times throughout my life, often when it was tranistion time. But this week, as I started reading a new book, my thoughts on this question have changed a little.

Istead of asking it just during times of transition (such as graduation, job change, family change, retirement, etc.) what if we asked this question of ourselves every day.

What do you want to do with your life? What are your goals, your dreams, your aspiriations?

Sometimes we get stuck in what we are doing, and we start to miss the joy of life. Sometimes it is because of a certain situation, sometimes it is because we have tunnel vision and cannot see the bigger picture. There are times when we need to expand our vision, take a good look at ourselves, and ask if we are using the gifts we have been given in the best possible way.

So today, how about a little inventory on life. Lets call it - faith steps for life steps.

Step one - what are you passionate about? What do you love to do? What has God hard-wired into your DNA that is fun and enjoyable? Finding our passion is essential when we are looking forward to what we wnat to do in our lives, for our passions should help show the steps we are going to take.

Step two - how can we do what we are passionate about? How can we live out our passions in the world in ways that are productive, honor God, and help us take more steps in our lives. Example - a friend of mine loves music and loves recording music. He has done this for years as a hobby. Recently he decided to follow hiw passion, and in his free time started his own business as a recording studio. The goal is to eventually have a full-time job in this recording studio and live his passion every day.

Step three - what steps do we need to take to start living out our passions? Is there a financial aspect - then how do we sav the money to get there? Is there an educational aspect, then how do we get the education we need? Is there a volunteer aspect (talk we me, and we will find the right "opportunity":).

Step four - the courage to move forward - this is a tough one. It means that we need to take a risk and try to do what we love. It may not be easy, but the end rewards could be amazing.

Through it all - remember to keep talking to God about it. God blesses us with so many gifts and passions in our lives, and he is concerned about how we use these gifts. So keep praying, talking with God, and asking his guidance.

May we all find our passions, and boldly live them out in the world.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The New You

God changes us.

This week I started reading a new book by Reggie McNeal and I have been preparing for the sermon this weekend on the Gerasene demoniac. As I have spent time reflect on these two things, I have kept coming back to the same thought.

God changes us.

God wants us to be happy, healthy, and use the gifts he has given us. In order for all this to happen, God changes us. He takes those things that we hold onto, those things that hold us back sometimes, and helps us to see them as obstacles, sometimes even removing them from our way, or giving us the strength to get past them.

He changes us - and he does so because he wants us to function at our peak performace. For when we get healthier, our relationships get healthier as well. Our relationships with family, friends, strangers, even God - they all get healthier and we see new ways that the Body can function and grow.

This summer we are going to be offering a four week course on "The Body - A Wholistic Approach to Life" (this is just a working title right now). The four weeks are going to focus on four different aspects of our life. One week will be nutrition, one will be spiritual health, one will be vocational health, and one will wrap everything together.

I love the idea behind this (and, I must confess, it is not my idea, but rather a couple of dear saints who asked about a nutrition class earier this month). I love the idea because it takes seriously the thought that our whole lives need to be examined for us to be healthy. Physically, mentally, and spiritually, we need to be in balance in order to grow and live out our callings.

So today, my prayer revolve around the Body - both ours and God's (the Church). May we all be open to the changes that God sends our way, and may we have the courage to grow and become healthier, each and every day.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

What's in a name

As you know, we are expecting our second child in September. Due to the child's decision to hold its legs up tight last week, we don't know if it is a boy or a girl. Yesterday we started looking at possible names for the cricket (which is what we are calling it at this time). I remember doing this four years ago, and I always have a lot of fun trying to come up with names. If you were around 4 years ago, you will remember that one of my favorites was Shazam - good for a boy or a girl. That one didn't go too far:)

This time we grabbed our little name book and started looking at what different names mean. Jennifer looked up my dad's name, Dwayne, and discovered it means swarthy. My name, Erik, means royal one. It is interesting to me to see what different names mean and where the names come from.

When we look through scripture, we see that different names really define people. The names are sometimes chosen by the parents, other times they are given by God.

Our names help others to identify us, and they help us to either stand out or be part of the crowd. As I look at different names, I keep thinking that I would like our child to have one that is somewhat original, yet not so strange that it scars the child for life:)

But behind the name, what I really hope for is that the child knows love. We live in a world where there is so much pressure on children - pressure to be the best, to stand above others. We live in a world where pettiness and nastiness seem to rule to day. Imagine what the world would be like if the great commandment - to love God and to love one another - was the key everyone lived by. The blessings that could be showered on the world would be immense.

So as I spend time ruminating over different names, I am also spending more time letting the people I love know that I love them. For who knows what kind of change will take place when we all just share a little bit more love with the people we come in contact with.

Sunday, May 11, 2008


Today is Pentecost, the birthday of the church. Here we celebrate the day by a festive worship service, and we have plenty of red balloons floating around It is a time of celebration and joy, as we re-live the time when the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples and sent them out into the world to proclaim the Good News - that Jesus Christ is the savior of the world

Today is the thrid biggest holiday in the church year, and it is one that is often overlooked. For too long we Lutherans were a bit scared of Pentecost, because is was a celebration of the gift of the Holy Spirit, and that made us nervous (as well it should, for who knows where the Spirit will lead us). But now, we are reclaiming this holiday, and we are celebrating it with an urgent sense of joy. The Spirit is here, the Spirit empowers us to do God's work in the world. The Spirit leads us into uncharted waters -all for the sake of the gospel.

Today we celebate the heart of what it means to be the church. We are a people gathered by the Spirit. We are brothers and sisters who have been given the gift of the Spirit in our lives. We are part of a body who relies on the Spirit to guide us as we go about our work, sharing God's lvoe for others in our words and deeds.

So today, may we all be blessed with the power of the Spirit in our lives. May we celebrate this great gift and wonderful birthday. And may we come together as the body that we are, working for the good of others, blessing others with the grace and love we have been blessed with as well.

Friday, May 9, 2008


A few weeks ago I was at the gym playing on the death-machine (aka treadmill). I worked up a nice sweat, finished my time and started to wipe down the machine. As I was doing this a guy walked up to me that I hadn't noticed before. He introduced himself and said, "I've seen you here a few times, and I want you to know that he have inspired me."

At this point I am in shock, I don't do many inspiring things at the gym.

He continued, I saw you running on that treadmill a few weeks ago, and I saw the amount of time you went on it. I was only going for half that time and I thought - If he can go that long, so can I. So I have pushed it and now I go as long as you do. Thanks. And he walked away.

They will know we are Christians by our love.

As I said, I had never noticed him before, and I think I have only seen him once after this encounter, but the encounter stuck with me. I wasn't doing anything amazing, I was just working up a sweat, trying to get this old body in shape. But he saw something I didn't. He saw a guy that for some reason inspired him, and he took this inspiration to make himself better.

As Christians, our calling leads us out of the walls of the church building. We are church, where ever we go, and whatever we do. So our actions speak very loudly about what we believe and people notice actions much more than words.

One of the greatest condemnations of christians is that we are hypocrites. We do one thing on Sunday, and then live our lives differently the other six days of the week. Some of this is justified, some is not. But what if ...

What if we really did show God's love for us in all of our actions and deeds ...

What if we really did care for the outcast as Jesus cares for us ...

What if we really did pray for people, right when they asked for prayers or when we said we would ...

What if ...

I just read a story about a pastor who lead a Men's Group every Wednesday. He had a guy who came every week, never missing for three years. Then, all of a sudden, he stopped coming. After three weeks of missing the pastor called him and asked if he was okay. Then man responded - I am fine. Sorry I haven't made it in the past few weeks. You see, I have this friend whose wife died suddenly about a month ago. I discovered that he and his wife had a regularly scheduled tee time on Wednesday mornings. So now, he and I use that tee time. I want to help maintain some normality in his life as he goes through this struggle.

That is what it means to be a Christian - to show love and compassion - and to do so outside of the walls of our safe worship space as well.

May we all be an inspiration to others, and may we be church in the world that God has created.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


I may have mentioned this before, but Sierra is into the princesses huge right now. Everything is about the princesses - clothes, games, book, DVD's - you name it, there needs to be a princess on it. One really good point about this - I was hoping to get Sierra to learn about fishing this year, and I happened to find a princess fishing pole - she loves it, practices in the backyard with it, and cannot wait to try it out in the water.

I am told that the allure of the princesses is a natural phase for most girls, and most dad's find ways to adapt to it as well:)

Every once in a while, we talk about people we know, and Sierra says, "I'm not Sierra, I'm Cinderella." She takes the identity of her favorite princess and claims it as her own.

And identity is such a huge issue for us, isn't it.

In our world, we are identified by so many different things - our parents, our jobs, what school we go to, our hobbies, who we are married to or dating, etc. For some, it is this identity that defines them as a person - how people view them is who they are.

This is not all that healthy - for when we look to others to define us, we are relying on them to see everything about us, and that isn't possible because we are such complex beings that no human can see all of us.

So what if our identity comes from a deeper place - as in a phrase I have used before - not who we are, but whose we are. First and foremost, our identity comes from God. We are his children, his creation, his beloved. Knowing this first, knowing that we are created as specific, unique beings who are loved and have gifts, empowers us. it reminds us that no matter what, we have a God who loves us and blesses us, even when we feel unloved.

And when we start there - knowing that we are beloved creatures who were created with a purpose in mind and gifts to achieve that purpose, everything else is different in life. Our identity does not rely on others to define us, because we are all ready defined as children of God. And what greater identity is there than that?

So may you always know that you are loved, cared for, and needed. You are blessed child of God, empowered with the gifts of the Spirit, and called to share that blessing with others.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

EGO = Edging God Out

I heard this phrase yesterday for the first time, and it has stuck with me - EGO = Edging God Out.

There are many times in all of our lives when we think we know best - we think we have the one and only answer - we think we know the right direction to go. And quite often, this really is our ego getting in the way. As humans we often want to be right, because it avoids embarassment and having to say we were wrong. And yes, I am as guilty as that as anyone.

I told this story in a sermon a couple of years ago, but it illustrates the point well.

It was my first Sunday at my first call, and one of the teenage girls walked up to me and said, "We are going on a trip in the summer. Everything is planned, and you are coming with us." What else could I say but, okay, what are we doing. The plan was to go to Glacier National Park, go whitewater rafting, and then head to an Indian Reservation to paint a church and teach VBS

It was a long drive, the kids got rowdy, and soon the teasing began. After first pit stop, the cars divided up by gender, the girls in two cars, boys in the other two. Well, we made it to Glacier and had a lot of fun rafting. When we finished on the water, we started to head to my friend’s church that we were staying at for the night. We stopped for gas, and I did something I shouldn’t have.

One of the ladies driving a van full of girls asked me - Do you want a map?

I turned to her, and in my most defiant voice said - I don’t need a map, I am man, I know where I am going.


So we started out, and yes, I made a wrong turn. I even knew it was a wrong turn about five miles down the road, but did I admit it, NO! EGO

I kept going, hoping that there would be a turn somewhere I could take to get back on the right road. Plus, the boys in my car said – you can’t let the women see you were wrong.

We would up in the middle a cow pasture.

So, I turned around and started down another road. Then, here comes the girls lead van. As it passes by I notice there is a note in window. It said - We are women, we have a map, follow us!

Ego - it gets in the way sometimes, and when it does, we get lost and need that guidance to get back on the right path. It is not always easy to ask for help, but we need to because we are not perfect, we do make mistakes, and we need others to support, care for, and guide us at times.

May all of us have the courage to ask for help when we need it, and may our ego's take a backseat to God's will for us.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Another Year

Yesterday was my birthday - another year on that clock. It was a very nice day, we went and had an ultrasound of the baby (legs were in the way, no cheating as to if a boy or a girl), had a picnic, and went out to dinner. It was a nice relaxing day.

But, as usual, it got me thinking. We are blessed with the number of years that we have, and the thoughts I had revolved around what I am doing and how (or if) I am making a difference with the life I have been given.

As I gave Sierra a bath this morning, I was reminded that the greatest sermon I will every preach is the one that involves my actions, rather than words. Being the best husband and father that I can - helping our daughter grow knowing that she is loved and cared for, empowering her to do what she is called to do in life. Also, lifting up Jennifer to so that she can continue to follow her dreams and letting her know every day that she is a blessing to me.

Our actions, what we do with what we have been given, are so important. It is through the ways that we live out our lives that we show the world of the love that God has for his creation.

So every year, around this time, I take a little inventory of myself. I ask the questions - am I demonstrating the love of God in what I do and say, what areas do I need to grow in (for we all have growth areas), and what areas have I missed the mark? This inventory helps me to make wahtever changes are needed so that I may use those gifts I have been blessed with, and not just let them sit on the shelf.

So today, my prayers revolve aournd using our gifts. May we all see what God has given to us and use them in ways that glorify God and build up others. For we have the opportunity to be that physical presence of grace in the lives of others.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Keeping Up

Over the years, I have been either really good at keeping up with friends, or really bad. I have noticed that the good times come when I don't have a lot else going on in my life, and the bad times when I am busy and running from one thing to another. I think this is normal for most people.

But the further away from school I get (both physically and time-wise) the more I reflect back on those friendships and treasure that time that I have with these people.

You know, we humans were created to be in relationships. God knows the importance of relationships and companionship. He knows that we need others so that we can continue to grow, love, and interact with people who are both similar to us and different.

Yes, humans were created to interact - sometimes it is because we need those relationships to lean on in tough times, sometimes hecause we can be the physical presence of grace in the life of another, and sometimes just to have the companship we all crave from time to time.

That is one reason why it is so important to build relationships with others. We are following our calling to live in community, and we are celebrate the gifts of God in the lives of others.

But relationships take work. We need to be able to forgive as we are forgiven, to love as we are loved, to bless as we have been blessed. It means that there are times we need to take the initiative and reach out to some we have not talked to in awhile, and it means taking time out of our busy lives to listen to friends who are having a tough time.

So tonight I started sending out a few e-mails to people I haven't been in touch with for a while. Sending an e-mail or making a call, doesn't take a lot of time, but the rewards are great. We get to reconnect, find out how people are doing, and celebrate what is happening in their lives.

So I hope you will spend some time reconnecting, and celebrating the gift of friendship with others.


I am not always really good at taking direction - esp. when it comes to driving directions. I like to try and find things on my own, explore unknown paths, and think I always know where I am going.

But, as I have realized over the years, this is not always the most productive way to get somewhere. More often than not, time is lost when I bypass the directions I am given and try to find places on my own.

I was thinking about that this week as I prepared for the sermon. I was thinking about direction, and how we are all given different directions, different paths of guidance, yet we, at times, ignore this guidance and wind up more lost than we were before.

The beauty of this God that loves us so much taht he gave his life for us, is that he is also a God that is very active in our lives. He empowers us with a wide variety of gifts, and opens our eyes to the ways we can use these gifts to empower and love others.

But we need to put our wills, our desires, our self-made directions to the side and listen to where God is calling us to go and what God is calling us to do. We need to slow down, and ask for direction - in prayer - to more fully understand what it is that God is calling us to be a part of.

So today, as I prepare for worship, my prayers focus on direction - what direction God is calling me to go and what direction God is calling the church to go. For we all need the guidance of God in our lives, and we need to slow down and discern what that direction is that we are given.

Friday, May 2, 2008


Every year all the churches in the synod (southern half of Wisconsin) gather for a meeting in the Madision area. This is a time when we deal with the business of the larger church, approve synod budgets, elect people to go to national assemblies, and deal with resolutions about how the church should be active in the world.

Some of the business is exciting, some quite mundane. For me, the highlight of the assembly is spending a couple of days with classmates in the area and renewing relationships. This is a great time to sit down, catch up, and talk about waht is happening in our lives and the churches we serve.

But when I look at the business angle of the assembly, I keep thinking - is this really making a difference? I think the real work of the church doesn't take place in big meetings, but rather it takes place in homes, coffee shops, and malls. The real work of the church is where we gather with friends and strangers, help those in need, and share our love of Jesus by being present in someone's life, showing others what Christ means to us by what we do. This is what it means to "be" the church.

Now don't get me wrong, meetings have there place - we need to be organized to opportunites for others to grow in their lives of faith and empower others to experience the love of Christ in their lives. But this is not the end all be all of the what it means to be the church - it is only a starting point.

So as I pack up and prepare for two days of meetings, I pray that those gathered will find ways to reach others in their own communities, and that all of us may "be" church to those around us.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Professional Eating Contest

As many of you know, I am a sports nut - I love to watch and play all kinds of sports. So when I watch TV I often have it on ESPN and when I am in the car, I am tuned into ESPN radio. One of my favorite radio shows is on ESPN2 as well - called Mike and Mike in the Morning. Since Sierra was a baby, she learned about this show and knows the two Mikes well enough that she calls out their name when she sees a ad with them on it.

Every year on Mike and Mike they have a bet about March Madness - last year Mike Greenberg had to milk a cow in the studio when he lost. And this year, Mike Golic lost and he had to participate in a professional eating contest in studio. Today was, as they called it, the Feast on the First. so when I got home from the gym, I turned on and watched four men eat as many buffalo wings as they could in 3 minutes. Great TV:)

After it was over, and all the guys ate from 1 pound to 3 pounds of wings, I started thinking.

What in the world do we do to our bodies!!

I was just at the gym, I had been lifting and run on the death machine (also known as a treadmill), and I come home and watch four guys stuffing their faces with very unhealthy food.

There is that line in scripture that says our bodies are temples, and we are to treat them as the holy gifts that they are. We are blessed to have these bodies, and we need to take care of them not only for ourselves, but also because in doing so we are honoring God and what he has given us.

I then flipped to CNN and saw a report where high school students were leading classes to help autisic children learn how to swim - such a difference then the stuff-your-face-with-everything contest. These youth were taking their time and their gifts to help build up others and show love in the lives of children with major struggles.

What are we doing with our bodies?

As I think about this, I am reminded of what a blessing it is to have a body that functions - even if it is a little bigger than it should be. I am blessed to have the opportutity to use this body in ways that glorify God and help others.

Now, I am still going to watch and listen to Mike and Mike, and get some good laughs while I hear about different sports. And, I am also going to spend that time on the machines-of-extreme-pain, to try and get this body of mine back into the shape it should be in.

All the time, remembering that I am blessed to have what I have.

Remember your blessings, and may we all honor our bodies as the true gifts that they are.