Archive for May, 2012

Why Run 24 Hours?

May 10, 2012

I am still recovering from the 24 hour run that I participated in this past weekend.  My muscles are no longer sore, but some of the blisters on my feet have healed, and some are still an issue.

Why do a 24 hour run?

It is not for health reasons.  You don’t have to run for 24 hours to experience health benefits.  Actually, there are definite health risks involved, besides blisters and sore muscles, the possibility of joint issues arising is very real.

It is not really for competition.  I know that I am not good enough to be competitive.  Although this years winner was 58, so maybe I will improve with time.

It’s not really for fun.  I do enjoy participating but it stops being much fun after about forty miles.

I do it for the personal physical and mental challenge.

It’s not really about how I do, compared with others.  It is about what I can do compared with myself.  This year I improved my distance by 13 miles.  I am already thinking about a goal for next year.  I realize that it might be a little bit crazy, but I enjoy the challenge of seeing what I can do.

I think I can do better next year.

My 2nd 24hr Run

May 8, 2012

This past Saturday I participated in my second 24 hour run.  That does not mean that you run for 24 hours, but that you have 24 hours to complete as much distance as you can by running, walking or crawling.

There are two types of 24 hour run: the track  run and the trail run.  Just like they sound, the track run is run on a standard track, and the trail run is on trails.  Both involve doing as many laps as you are capable of completing in the time allowed.  I participate in a track run.

Last year was my first attempt at a 24 hour run.  I ran two laps, and walked one for as long as I could.  Eventually, I ran less and walked more.  By fifty miles, and in the 14th hour,  my feet hurt with every step, and I called it quits.

This year I tried something a little different.  I still started out by  running two laps and then walking one, but this time every three hours I took off my running shoes and walked three laps in a pair of moccasins.  Then I put on a fresh pair of socks and went back to running two, walking one.  This strategy worked well for me.  I completed 63.65 miles and my feet were still feeling OK.

There was a different challenge this year.  Last year it was cool and cloudy, this year it was sunny and in the mid 80’s with plenty of humidity.  Even with applying lotion every hour, I still began to burn.  Plus, running in the heat is clearly more draining.

Once again, I did not complete the entire 24 hr period.  I called it quits in the 19th hour.  I had reached my goal of 100k and did not have sufficient motivation to push through to the end.

It was a good second attempt.  We will see what happens next year.

Godly Love

May 7, 2012

When I was a youngster my mother allowed me to make my first batch of cookies, by myself, without direct supervision.  She was at work, I could read the recipe,  it was an electric stove, my older siblings were at home, she figured if I had any questions or problems, I would ask my sisters.

I decided to make chocolate chip cookies.  Everything went just fine, except for one little problem.  I had never heard of measuring spoons.  The recipe said something about a teaspoon of salt.  I looked in the silverware drawer, figured that the small spoons that we placed on the table were tablespoons, so the larger spoons must be the teaspoons.

My cookies turned out a little on the salty side.

It’s important to get the ingredients right.

The primary ingredient in a Christian life is love; love for God and love for people.  God tells us in His Word what He means by love for people.

I. The Importance of Love

I Corinthians 13:1-3 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.

Tongues, spiritual gifts, knowledge, miracles, without love they would mean very little.  Love is the most important quality we can develop in our lives.

II.  The Traits of Love verses 4-7

Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

We should use this list to do a self-evaluation.  There are almost certainly areas  in our lives that could use improvement.  When I was young, I often got the “I” grade in school, standing for “improvement needed”.  As I grew older I did better and better in school.  I think that we can say that as a student, I improved.  If we are aware of the areas in our life that need improvement, we can seek to improve them.

III.  The Fulfillment of Love  verses 8-13

Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.

11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

When we are in heaven we will no longer need faith.  We will be in the very presence of God.  We will no longer need hope.  What more could we possibly hope for ourselves?  We will still have love.  Love for God, and love for the people of God.  These things are eternal.

IV.  The Source of Love

While it is important that we do a self-evaluation and determine what areas of our life need improvement to more accurately display the love of God.  It is even more important that we realize that the source of this kind of love is God Himself.  As the Spirit of God works within us, it helps to produce the fruit of the Spirit.  (That could be a different sermon.)  For today, we realize that it is by God’s Spirit, that true godly love is developed in our lives.

Kingdom Work

May 1, 2012

I am still behind.  These are the notes from 4/22/12

1 Corinthians 3:5-17 (NKJV)

Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor.

For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building. 10 According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. 11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.

16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.  (biblegateway.com)

I.  Working For the Kingdom

We recognize that there are many people working for the kingdom of God in many different ways.  Each person contributing to God’s work in whatever way will receive a reward for their labor.  Even though we work, it is only God who gives the increase.  We should continue to be faithful in our labors, knowing that they are not in vain.

II.  What Are You Working On?

Most of us have jobs where we put in a lot of hours.  We have responsibilities with our family and homes.  We have some free time to relax and participate in hobbies and recreational activities.  In all of these endeavors, we continue to represent Christ.  Our Christian witness is not restricted to the church, or working with specific evangelism efforts.  Our whole life is a witness.  Are we seeking to let the light of Christ shine through our lives?

III.  Are You Tearing Down?

The people of God are called the temple of God.  Elsewhere in scripture, this refers to the individual believer, but in this context it is talking about the gathering of believers, or, the local church.  We must be careful how we speak about the various ministries that God is using to build His kingdom.  It is one thing to debate doctrinal issues.  It is another thing to speak badly about ministers, or ministries.  We need to be careful that we are building up, and not tearing down the kingdom of God.

What is the overall impact of  your life for the kingdom of God?