Archive of ‘Personal Discipline’ category

Go Have an Adventure

https://vimeo.com/45114278

Dictionary.com defines adventure as “an exciting or very unusual experience” and routine as “commonplace tasks, chores, or duties as must be done regularly or at specified intervals; typical or everyday activity: the routine of an office.

Over the last few months my life has felt pretty adventurous. No, I didn’t cave dive Twin Dees, but it is a goal of mine. With changes at work and the birth of Kim’s and my fourth child and second daughter, Kate, life has not been routine. That’s what really struck me: the comparison between adventure and routine and how they work together.

As my wife will tell you, routine can drive me nuts and the spontaneity of adventure is what I talk about most. It would seem I can’t live in adventure all the time and that routine is the mundane backbone of life. What I’m realizing is that without routine, there is no adventure, and without adventure, there is no routine.

It starts with adventure. Adventure is the new, the unfounded. Adventure is the unexperienced. It’s that daydream I bring to reality. It’s the vision I plan into action. Adventure is the life of an idea. Adventure is outside my comfort zone. As adventure becomes part of my everyday life it creates routine.

Routine is my safety net. It helps keep me from making everyday mistakes at work and home. Routine is my comfort zone. It lets me know I’m doing the right thing at the right time the right way. Without it, chaos would reign. Routine helps keep the adventure alive. It gives stability to the adventure.

I’ve come to appreciate routine and the stability it gives me. Without it, adventures tend to end in disaster.

What adventure in your life needs routine?

…and for your consideration.

Twin Dees Revived and Pumping from Matt Vinzant on Vimeo.

Noah

Credit: http://www.noahmovie.com

Since watching Noah, I’ve thought a lot about what I want to say. I’m not going to write about the biblical accuracy. I’m not going to write about whether Christians should see it or boycott it. There are plenty of other articles by those more qualified that will argue both sides. These are simply truths that have come to mind regardless of how presenting them in the film changed the Biblical story.

Symbolism is an extremely powerful communication tool with one example from Noah screaming at me. A snake skin was chosen to be the tool used to pass the family blessing down through the generations beginning with Adam. This is a detail I didn’t understand and disliked until the meaning finally clicked.

Why would a snake skin be used as a tool for blessing? A snake was used as the tool for the original fall. But as it turned out, the snake skin was a stroke of genius. What better item would there be to use than the last snake skin untainted by sin? It would last as a symbol of the purity God desires for man and ultimately a reminder that all men are created in His image.

Being made in the image of God is a powerful thought. It is one we talk about a lot as we teach our children the creation story and one we continually refer back to as proof Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Until now, I’ve never considered what being made in the image of God means for someone who believes he was made by God but due to sin rejects some of the other truths of the statement.

Isn’t that what sin does to me: takes truth and distorts it just enough to capture me in its grips dragging me away from God’s presence? Tubal-cain passionately admitted to God he knew he was made in his Creator’s image but angrily could not understand why God would not talk to him. Sin blinds and not just the unbeliever.

Noah passionately desired to do God’s will. He passionately worked to achieve it. In the film, Noah offers a warning: I have to be careful that what I initially believe to be God’s will isn’t replaced with my own will. I create goals. I want to be right. I want to win. I want to succeed and achieve. I want to please my heavenly father.

However, Noah only sought God when he was confused and unsure. That’s simply not enough. Those actions left Noah in a dark place and will leave me in the same dark place. I have to seek God’s will not once, not twice, but multiple times a day.

God is ultimately more complex than I will ever comprehend this side of life. He sees and understands infinitely more than my minds can handle. He wants me to trust Him. I have to continually seek Him. I can’t get to a place where I think I’ve figured it all out. The world is His. I am His. I need to throw myself at His mercy, grace and love. That’s the only way any of this life will make any sense. I need to trust Him to direct my steps and provide the how to follow. Then and only then will I know I’m pursuing my Creator’s will and not my own as I will begin to clearly see the confirmation he sends my way.

As strange as The Watchers came across, they still reveal something about the Creator. God will not leave me. God will provide. I highly doubt God will send me a mix between a transformer, an ent, and a fairy (my take on The Watchers). He will send me friends, family, strangers, and even enemies to confirm, encourage and teach me. I can’t miss God’s provisions because I’m too stubborn to see Him working in unconventional ways. I have to be open to how God is trying to work in my life through others even my enemies.

So that’s my take on a film that’s caused a flood of issues. What did you unexpectedly realize after watching Noah or not?

Chicken vs. Fish

chicken

Christians talk a lot about needing to be fed meat by their spiritual leaders. One set of Christians desire lots of theology. A second set wants lots of practical application. Both tend to disagree with each other on what spiritual meat actually is. Is one wrong and the other right?

Both are right. Both desire meat. One just prefers fish over chicken and vice versa. Both types of meat contain some of the same nutrients. However, there are nutrients in fish not found in chicken, and there are nutrients in chicken not found in fish. Christians need both.

It’s not that one type of meat is better than the other. It’s that a person has a preferred taste and can absorb and process God’s word more effectively via one type of meat. Some people learn with plates full of lists and application, while other learn with heavy plates of theology. Where each has to be careful is to not overeat one and neglect the other.

Those that prefer theology have to be careful not to neglect the application. Unapplied knowledge is a waste.

Those that prefer application have to be careful not to neglect theology. Application without a foundation won’t stand the test of time.

I know I have made myself sick by eating too much of one thing. Have you? A change in diet can do wonders.

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