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Body Image

As I stated in my last post, I have been reading a book on fasting. I’m not finished with it yet, but was wondering what others views on body image were.

The author Scot McKnight prescribes to the theory that the problem we have nowadays with fasting (or as he calls it later body talk) is a general disconnection of our body from our soul/spirit. This he feels is caused by our body image. He gives four common images and feels most of us can relate to one or more of them. The four common images he lists are:

  1. as a monster to be conquered;
  2. as a celebrity to be glorified;
  3. as a cornucopia to be filled;
  4. as a wallflower to be ignored.

He holds that each of these body images shape whether we fast and if we do how we fast.

Now I’m not ready to get into a full-blown discussion on fasting yet, but was really curious how you view your body? This is not a topic I have heard talked about much before. I realize there is a duality between physical self and spiritual self, but have we been programmed to believe the physical is all bad or unimportant? Can there be a meshing of the two that glorifies God and allows us to the fullest “us” that we can be?

I never realized that my body image as far as spirituality goes was undefined. But the more I’ve thought about it, the more I find that is the case. I am a sloppy mess of most of the images listed above. I tried to discuss this with my sis, but I was having a tough time expressing what I was thinking in words. So I fell back on what I know – I’m better at writing my thoughts out than speaking them.

So what do you think? Does our body image affect our ability to fulfill God’s calling on our lives? Or am I still just jabbering aimlessly?

New Year, New Season

As I’m sure some of you have noticed, I’ve been in a bit (or maybe more than a bit) of a funk for the past month or so. For me it was more of a combination of physical issues, tiredness from a crazy schedule, and the time of year (by that I mean the financial woes that always plague me this time of year).

But between having a truly lovely visit with my in-laws, spending some real-time in prayer, and having the time and energy to love on my babies, I feel like I am coming out of this valley.

This seems to be a popular theme with friends and other bloggers. I am happy to report most are coming out of it as well. Maybe next year we should band together so we don’t face the same issues again?

Anyways, I really have a lot of excitement about the coming year. I am really trying to spend some QT with Jesus and find out my place in the body. I want to be a useful part of his kingdom, not just a random part that hangs around but no one really knows what purpose it serves. So while I am searching and praying, I hope you’ll join me in praying for clarity. Is there anything I can be praying for you?

Also I am excited to have my latest book from booksneeze.com so should have a review up in the next week or so. The book is on fasting which I am excited to explore as it is an area that I definitely don’t have a total grasp on yet. I am hoping this book will give me a broad view of the topic and some specific scriptures that I can explore on my own.

I am so thankful for all my friends and family that have been supporting, advising, challenging, loving, and helping me to grow this past year. I hope I have helped some of you as well. I pray you all have a blessed New Year and that awesome things happen for you this year.

Keeping Kingdom Minded

Today we had the pleasure of taking my husband’s parents with us to our new church (yes we have decided to make the move to Victory for sure). It was a really nice time of fellowship that I’m so glad we got to share.

The sermon focused on Ephesians 4 and being Kingdom minded. It was quite refreshing to me to hear a pastor strongly preach on the fact the regardless the traditions or denomination we choose, as long as we are all Christ followers, we are all one body. He spoke of the coming year with excitement over the unknown blessings, challenges, and changes that God would bring for the church and each of us individually.

I’m excited too. I just have a feeling that some really big kingdom movements are coming down the pike in my life, and hopefully in yours as well. Hoping you all had a blessed holiday season and even more blessed new year.

Then Sings My Soul is a collection of 150 classic and dearly loved hymns. This book includes the full hymnal style sheet music and verses as well as a devotional style background story for each hymn. The hymns are broken into five sections: Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Patriotic, and Other favorites. With comprehensive indexes, finding your favorite song is made simple.

I have to be really honest. When this book arrived I was intimidated. I’m not a musician. I have no talent musically but have always enjoyed music. When I saw how extensive the book was I honestly doubted I’d be able to get thru it. I couldn’t have been more wrong! There is something so beautiful about understanding where a song came from then reading the words again. I was truly moved by so many of them. If you have ever wanted to getter a deeper insight to some of the classic hymns, this book is a great way to do that. Also, it would make a great gift for any music lovers in your life.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

The Wisdom of an Ant

One of the coolest things I’ve found since I started really studying the Bible is how few words it takes to impact me to my core. A simple sentence can make me think, cry, feel convicted, or unbelievably loved. My God is so good to me, He allows me to feel all of those so that I can grow in him.

The sixth chapter of Proverbs is full of little kernels of wisdom. It starts out by telling you that if you verbally commit to something and realize it was a mistake; do not wait to fix it. Go humble yourself – admit your error and beg relief from your neighbor.

Proverbs 6:4 (New International Version)

4 Allow no sleep to your eyes,
   no slumber to your eyelids.

Don’t wait for tomorrow to fix something you know you need to fix today!

Have you ever pondered the industriousness of an ant? They without prompting faithfully prepare themselves for winter. They collect and store preparing for the upcoming season of hardship. Unlike us humans, you rarely see any ant crawling around with bling dripping off them.

You also don’t tend to find them plugging away at their latest toy or electronic device. They spend their time wisely and use their resources wisely.

Proverbs 6:10-11 (New International Version)

10 A little sleep, a little slumber,
   a little folding of the hands to rest—
11 and poverty will come on you like a thief
   and scarcity like an armed man.

Who knew ants were better at living a responsible adult life than I am?

The last part I wanted to point out was actually quite surprising to me. Not in its content, but in the fact that it was there at all, somehow I managed to never see this before.

Proverbs 6:16-19 (New International Version)

16 There are six things the LORD hates,
   seven that are detestable to him:
    17 haughty eyes,
      a lying tongue,
      hands that shed innocent blood,
    18 a heart that devises wicked schemes,
      feet that are quick to rush into evil,
    19 a false witness who pours out lies
      and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.

Yikes! Double yikes! I know for a fact that I have fallen short in a few of those areas. And I am simultaneously shamed and so grateful. Shamed as I have done things that my Lord detests. Grateful that I have been forgiven – even of things He detests.

The one of the seven that I think most would be sort of surprised by is the last one. The Lord is not a fan of drama. He doesn’t look kindly on those that stir things up for dramas sake.

Now that my babies are all feeling better, and I’m not feeling as ragged, I will continue with my study on Proverbs.

Proverbs 5 is a warning against falling into the temptation of adultery. The overriding idea I got from this passage is that this is not a passive problem. You need to be cautious. Be aware of the situations you are opening yourself up to. Protect yourself and your family from temptation.

Proverbs 5:3 (New International Version)

3 For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey,
   and her speech is smoother than oil;

 Be on guard, and vigilant in maintaining your path. Keep your fingers out of the cookie jar! The path into sin is a slippery slope indeed. Keep to your own house and be aware that there are dangers waiting to trip you up.

Skipping ahead you see quite a lot of emphasis placed on this particular issue. I think it is emphasized so much because while for many sins there is a clear and definable decision made. Yes, I am going to steal this item. No, I am not going to shoot my neighbor. But the path to infidelity is rarely that clear-cut. It starts with small “innocent” things and builds on itself.

People don’t like discussing this topic much. Perhaps because if they acknowledged or thought about it, they’d find areas where they failed at this? Or maybe it’s just because it takes an effort. And we like being lazy. Honestly, I read this chapter and almost wanted to skip writing about it. It’s not comfortable. But that doesn’t make it any less real.

Sick babies

Sorry for my lack of posting the last couple days. The stomach flu has hit our household big time! My oldest was home yesterday with the stomach flu, and my son was up all night with it. Sky I am happy to report is feeling much better and back to school. Gavin is staying home today and I am praying this skip Piper.

Not much sleep happening due to everything going on, so this is the verse that is resonating with me today. Hope you all have a blessed day.

Psalm 18:2 (New International Version)

 2 The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
   my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
   my shield[a] and the horn[b] of my salvation, my stronghold

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