Trek to the Manger (DQ13)

Trek to the Manger Ch 13

I met a guy today who is counting down the days until March, when he leaves his cell phone and “sprinkles” behind for a year-long solo trek around the world. He can’t wait!

I imagine he will have some stories to tell.

Today I’m wondering, for those of you who are reading along in Trek to the Manger, which “on the road” story speaks most loudly to you?

Damascus? Emmaus? Gaza? Explain.

Trek to the Manger (DQ 12)

Trek to the Manger Ch 12On a scale from 1 to 10 (1 meaning “not at all” and 10 meaning “absolutely”), how footloose are you today? In other words, how free are you to respond if God should present a new opportunity for you?

I have a friend who just left her job – benefits and all – so she can run for office in State government. People don’t do that unless they’re footloose, and my friend doesn’t come from money; she’s doing what God is calling her to do and she has created a life that allows her the freedom to drop everything to follow the Star.

I just got off the phone with my daughter, and a good part of our conversation had to do with choosing quality over quantity. Not being so tied to our mountains of “stuff” that we can’t leave a job when it isn’t the right fit, or say “Yes!” to seemingly random opportunities that cost money and require a commitment that, when strapped to our possessions, we just aren’t free to make.

Today, think about how sprinkles taste.

They’re either pure sugar, creating a high that leads to a low in short order, or they’re tasteless morsels of food coloring on something we consider edible; neither of which is worth leveraging our time, our relationships, or our resources for.

Take stock of your sprinkles, friends. And the energy (and opportunity) they cost you.

Trek to the Manger (DQ11)

“I can’t tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn’t fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren’t small, but you’re living them in a small way.” 2 Corinthians 6:11-12 (The Message)

This passage cuts deep, man. On so very many levels.

First, it makes crystal clear that I can enter this wide-open, spacious life. It’s right there, and I’m at the threshold. No one is going to push me out the door, but no one is going to pull me in, either. It’s all on me, and the door is wide open, and Jesus says, “Come.” I’d have to be some kind of Space Cadet not to respond!

Then, there’s that whole “we didn’t fence you in” piece. But, I like to blame others for my situation. It’s easier to point the finger elsewhere than to take responsibility for the choices I have made. With these five words, I’m kind of a wreck, because if I’m feeling fenced in or left out or without options or stuck-in-the-mud, no one did that to me. We didn’t fence you in.

The smallness you feel – that’s universal. That’s the human condition. That’s what happens on the inside when we keep God on the outside. Nobody “does” that to you, either – that smallness comes from inside you. But it lies! That voice in your head, saying “you’re not enough,” “you can’t do anything right,” or any other self-talk that puts you down – that voice is lying to you. Call it out! Are you going to just sit there and take it? YOUR LIVES AREN’T SMALL! There it is – the truth.

But you’re living in small ways. Comfortable ways. Safe ways (no, not the grocery store).

Stop it! Just stop selling your God short, and step into the space He’s created for you to come alive in. I’m right there with you – lots of us are. And we are Space Cadet enough to see this through.

How much space would you say exists in your daily routine for God to come alive in you? Are there adjustments needed, to make room for Him to move?

Trek to the Manger Ch 11

 

 

 

Trek to the Manger (DQ10)

Trek to the Manger Ch 10I think we forget that we are children of God.

We grow up and grow into titles and relationships and seats at the table, and we just forget that inside these adult-shaped frames are kids-at-heart.

What childlike quality is missing in your life right now? How might you get some of it back?

I challenge you to uncover the whimsy and wonder that you’ve buried under grown-up responsibilities. Take the Daily Giveaway for a ride and experience life through the eyes of a child (yours or borrowed) in the week ahead, or create some Christmas memories by wrapping packages in ways that foster curiosity and awe.

Then… share some photos with us! Email your gift wrap ideas or kid-focused outing pics to me, with your permission to share (no names will be used – photos only):

brita@pinkshoesministries.me

Trek to the Manger (DQ9)

Trek to the Manger Ch 9I’m having a moment right now.

Re-reading Trek chapter 9, and realizing just how long it’s been since I sat in the parking lot, waiting for my little kiddos to finish the school day… No words.

Have you ever been emotionally derailed? How is your story like mine? How is it different? Ultimately, how did you decide to get over it and move on?

I suspect that there are many of us on the Trek who would love to know how you did it – how you found a way through. And if you’re still in the wondering-stage, wrestling with the options you may have, well – now is the time when you ask for your faith-family to pray for you.

We are here.

We are ready.

And we – like you – believe that nothing is impossible with God!

Happy Monday! Trek week two has begun.

Trek to the Manger (DQ8)

Trek to the Manger Ch 8One of the things I love most about how God made the world is the way He embedded deep truths inside of the human experience, so that we might discover Him simply by living our lives.

Chapter 8 proposes that there is a parallel between physical and spiritual self-defense, and that this should not surprise us. After all, God gives us armor to wear, which ought to be a sign that there is an enemy is on the prowl!

The tools we need to fight against a spiritual enemy are ours through the Word and the Spirit of God. Today, I’m wondering how being present and alert to your surroundings might serve as a means of spiritual self-defense?

And if you’ve ever taken a self-defense class, are there things you learned there that might benefit others – physically or spiritually?

Do tell!

Trek to the Manger (DQ7)

Trek to the Manger Ch 7I was talking with a new friend over coffee the other day, and she shared with me a dream she has for ministry. It started with a picture in her head, and she can actually “see” herself in a very particular place, doing a very specific type of ministry, and it’s so cool! Especially because her vision has absolutely nothing to do with her “real life” as it is today. She’s not trained for it. She doesn’t live in that geographical area. She basically has no idea how to get from point A (today) to point B (the dream). Even still, it’s crystal-clear in her heart and compelling as heck – she can’t shake it.

Sometimes God gives us a glimpse of Heaven and we mistake it for something we can have/do/be on earth. Now, don’t get me wrong! I have no doubt God can equip us to bridge any gap between where we are and where He compels us to go. But some dreams are bigger than this world – our human minds and bodies just can’t handle them in full. So, God gives us a sneak-peek. A taste. Just a sliver of what He has in store. And we’re hooked! Ruined for life-as-we-know-it, but oh-so-hopeful that what we can see with our hearts may one day be revealed to our world-weary eyes.

Tell me this: How has God whet your appetite for Heaven? And where do you see glimpses of what He has in store for you, and for all of His kids?

By the way – if you’re trekking with us and haven’t weighed in on a DQ yet, we would love to hear from you! Just to know you’re there. Don’t be shy! The “reply” option is located below this post when you click on today’s post title and scroll down. If you’re posting for the first time, there’s a delay before you can see what you’ve written. And you can reply to others’ responses, too!

Trek to the Manger (DQ6)

Trek to the Manger Ch. 6 2017It’s a beautiful thing, when God uses something ordinary to reveal something holy.¬†

He did it with the star that heralded Jesus’ birth.

He did it with Jesus’ stories about farmers and dirt.

And he does it with you, when you live the way you’re made!

Pointing to Jesus with our lives is what being a citizen of heaven is all about. Who do you know who does this well? What makes their impact so powerful?

Today’s Star Sighting challenges us to leak the Light wherever we go. Think of one ordinary, routine part of your day and start to pray that God will illuminate it! May He use you to reveal something holy to the light-starved people in that place.

 

 

Trek to the Manger (DQ5)

Trek to the Manger Ch 5Our traveling buddies can make or break the trip. Seriously.

Today’s challenge may be an unwelcome gift, yet it’s one we just have to unwrap.

Consider who you’re traveling with these days. Who are your comfortable, familiar friends? Who are the unpredictable newbies? Do you have the balance right between them, or is there some calibrating to do?

You don’t have to name names, but do share!

Click on the post title, above, then scroll down to the “Reply” area to weigh in on today’s discussion question, or to share your thoughts about chapter 5 in Trek to the Manger.

Trek to the Manger (DQ4)

Trek to the Manger Ch 4Today, let’s do an experiment. Before you read the words below, make a mental note to pay attention to how you feel when the words wash over you, okay? Here goes…

What is God’s will for your life?

(deliberate pause)

 

 

How does that question make you feel? What comes to mind when you wrestle with it? On a scale from shiny-happy to shakin-in-yer-boots, where do you land?

I’m here to propose that sometimes our problem is that we ask the wrong questions. Don’t believe me? Try these words on for size…

What is God’s will for your life today?

Feel different? Is your response quicker or slower? Heavier or lighter? More active or passive? Do you see where this is going?

What questions are you asking of yourself these days? And do they bring your soul to life, or are they crushing your spirit in the very worst way?

Maybe if we choose better questions to ask, we can break those infernal holding patterns and experience life as the adventure it was surely intended to be!

What do you think?