Monday, June 27, 2016

Elizabeth does True Strength Evolution (aka blocks and socks)

Me: You've just started Dylan Werner's Cody App plan, True Strength Evolution. What kinds of fitness activities have you been involved in lately besides this?

Elizabeth: Um. Sweaty yoga and pretending to run

Me: How does TSE compare to the rest of your routine?

Elizabeth: well. It's different, I don't know. I guess it's harder but I cheat more.

Me: What made you want to do TSE?

Elizabeth: Well my roommate Kate was doing it so I figured why not?

Me: You just finished day 2 of 90. What are you looking forward to in the next 88 days?

Elizabeth: uh gettin' swoll. Just kidding. Feeling less like a weakling

Me: What's been your favorite part so far?

Elizabeth: um like always, the savasana. and the complaining that I get to do

Me: What's been the most challenging exercise or series?

Elizabeth: today was harder but that's because I'm weak and also my hands hurt

Me: What is your greatest strength in doing these workouts?

Elizabeth: the complaining. Do I have a greatest strength? I'm really good at modifying. Cheating without anyone noticing.

Me: Do you have anything you like to say to Dylan during these workouts?

Elizabeth: I have a lot to say to him.

Me: Anything else you want people to know about this plan? Or your life in general?

Elizabeth: trying to adult is hard

Me: Can I take a picture of you for the blog? With your blocks and socks?

Elizabeth: Is that going to be the title of this? Block and socks?

Me: Where's the other block?

Elizabeth: I threw it at D-bag

Me: There. Nice plank. Your toes are even turned under

Elizabeth: It's just for the picture

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Privileged to Love

This morning at church, our pastor preached the beginning of Haggai. My heart was full and my mind set on Tina, my beautiful, brave sister in Georgia who is suffering now. I ache for her. She is one of my absolute favorite people in the world, and I so deeply desire her joy, especially that full joy Christ came to deliver.

The apostle Paul wrote,

I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. Romans 9:2-3

That Paul could love a people so much that he'd rather they know peace in Christ than himself used to be an utterly incomprehensible love to me.

Enter Christina

I don't know what it is about her. We are such unlikely friends. It is amazing we even met. There have been countless more opportunities to let it all go than to pursue each other. We see each other once or twice a year if we're lucky. We're deep introverts terrified of phone calls. We are busy, with our own communities and opposite sides of the country. But despite all this, she is my person. I can't help but recall Hazel and her dad in the Fault in our Stars, talking about her short lived relationship with the terminally ill Gus, "but it sure was a privilege to love him, huh?". It is a serious privilege and gift from God to love Tina.

Our pastor today in Haggai said that we get so caught up in what God might be calling us to in our futures, that we forget what He has already called us to right now. He said, "If you don't know where to start, read your Bible and love people. Your friends. Your neighbors. Your kids. Your spouse. God is calling every one of us to love right now"

I think loving Tina feels like such a gift, because she keeps offering it to me, gently, day by day. When hurting people let you be their people, it's a big deal. I have never taken her trust lightly. Loving her has been wild and messy and aching and silly and a chaotic. But behind it all, I've seen Jesus so clearly, drawing us to each other, to Him, and to the redemption for which all creation groans.

What a privilege indeed.

Friday, June 3, 2016

The New Testament: Haiku Edition

For the last year and a half, I've been working my way through a Bible reading plan that involves reading each book 20 times in a row. I added the twist of writing a haiku to summarize what I learned from the deep readings. I've been alternating Old and New Testament, but since there are more books in the Old than the New, I have now finished the New Testament.

The prophets told us
Messiah would come - He did
Christ died and He lives

Jesus is God's Son
When we gain this knowledge, we
Respond in worship

Jesus knows our hearts
He wanted them so much that
He died to heal them

Jesus is the light
By which we see everything
This light is our life

The name of Jesus
Is our saving foundation
Let us build on that

We who died to sin
Have life in Christ to be shared
With one another

1 Corinthians
Dear Church, I love you
Get over your sin and live
United in Christ

2 Corinthians
Oh! Hello again!
Your life is all grace - live it
Spread knowledge of Christ

There is only one
Gospel that leads to life
Love it and live it

You are now in Christ
You have been saved by His grace
To be His body

Christ brought Himself low
That we would count all as loss
And have peace in Him

Live as people who
Were created for God's glory
You are with Jesus

1 Thessalonians
The gospel means we
Have the truth with which we can
Encourage the church

2 Thessalonians
God will be faithful
To the body that stands firm
And clings to Jesus

1 Timothy
Jesus came to save
Now, this is how a redeemed
People should respond

2 Timothy
Remember Jesus
You won't regret anything
You do in His name

We have seen God's grace
He's redeemed us from our past
So, we do good works

Slaves become brothers
The bound are called beloved
By the work of Christ

You know the high priest?
The atoning sacrifice?
His name is Jesus

Works cannot save you
But when you have faith in Christ
You won't do nothing

1 Peter
Your reality
Will always be the gospel
You are safe in Christ

2 Peter
Don't be tempted by
The false promises of sin
God is truth. Live it

1 John
To the beloved
Christ Jesus is your whole life,
The eternal life

2 John
Brothers and sisters,
Love one another; obey God
Abide in the truth

3 John
Beloved, love truth
Abide in it, work for it
For God is the truth

You who have received
The truth of God's salvation
Don't be led astray

We look forward to
The fullness of victory
We have in Jesus