Why “Looking Back” is Trending

While all alone the other night, I had the option of watching football, hockey, the news or any number of my fav cooking shows.

Instead, I watched a cartoon. Why would a 50 year old do such a thing?

Because, I’m tired.

Though I’m a forward thinker and embrace change of all kinds, I sometimes find myself needing something familiar.

I believe it’s a key reason why pictures and memories of “days gone by” are so popular on social media today, including 250 million photos tagged with “ThrowbackThursday” or “tbt” hashtags on Instagram alone.

With so many unknowns in our life (insert Ebola scares, the economy, political landscape, health issues, job security, relationship navigation, etc.), we’ve grown to long for the expected. It requires no thinking, no adjusting, no surprises…just familiarity.

Delight in your future, but make time to relax in your past.

Your mind and heart will thank you for it. Happy Halloween! (140 words)

Is It Just Me? Am I just getting old, or do you notice your mind needing a rest? (I sure hope it’s the latter)

To Try: Establish holiday traditions that give you familiarity and comfort. Browse through your photo albums and take your time telling stories about the pictures with family or friends. Watch an old sitcom from your youth and try explaining to your kids why it was funny back then.

Here Goes Nothing

True story…

Church Elder (via phone): Hi, Pastor, how are you?

Pastor: Good, thanks.

Elder: Say, we’re launching a new prayer ministry Thursday night, and would love for you to join us. What do you have going on that evening?

Pastor: Nothing, actually.

Elder: Great! So, we’ll see you around 6:45 pm at church, then?

Pastor: Nope.

Elder: Oh, I’m sorry, I thought you said you were doing nothing that night.

Pastor: You’re right, and that’s what I plan on doing that night…nothing.

Elder: Humph. (click)

Your busy lifestyle and schedule does not impress anyone or cause others to feel sorry for you. Stop responding to “How are you doing?” with, “Good, but busy.” Everyone’s busy.

What we need out of you is a rested mind, body and soul so you can be at your best when called upon.

Schedule NOTHING on your calendar today.

*I may or may not have been that pastor. (136 words)

Chop Chop

I came home one day last week and my wife had written this short excerpt upon some reading she had done. I asked her if I could post it on leaderbird, she obliged. I’ll be giving nightly back rubs for a year, but it’s worth it. I will be posting again on Friday as it’s the one year anniversary of leaderbird. Enjoy! (but, not too much…you know how insecure I can be)

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by Becky Stromme

When we bought our home 10 years ago, it had my “top three” desires: space for a hammock, a clothesline, and a beautiful fireplace. It also included one unexpected perk…an apple tree! I was thrilled, to say the least.  Moving in during the fall, I anticipated the following spring with a smile, excited to watch the tree go from full bloom to producing apples.  And, oh, did I have great plans for those abundant apples.

To my dismay, there were only a few blossoms that spring, and the apples were deformed and inedible.  I still had hope, knowing  that apple trees ebb and flow. However, the following spring yielded the very same, disappointing results. Hope was fading.

After a number of years, we finally cut the tree down, resolving that it wasn’t going to miraculously change.

So, we started over. Nothing wrong with that.

RESOLUTION: Do you have influences or behaviors (cynicism, media, fear, lack of wisdom, etc.) causing you to produce bad fruit? What or who in your life is causing you to be less effective, less caring, or even less productive in the fruits of your labor? It may sound harsh, but perhaps it’s time to identify and cut off that influence or break away from a bad habit as you begin 2014….because life flies by.

If So Moved: Read Matthew 7:17-20. Notice the thoughts, behaviors or relationships this reading brings to mind.