Are you a doer?

fitness

In the fourth grade, I learned my schoolteacher had bicycled across the United States.

Ever since then, I have dreamed about doing the same thing someday.

In high school, I took a biking trip with a small group from St. Francis, Kansas, to Estes Park, Colorado, and back. 

I trained for this trip by riding ten miles every day for months, leading up to our departure.

My best day on the trip was the day we did a century ride. 

Naturally, the day after, I was exhausted. 

When I heard a companion from behind me say she wished our leader would let us stop and rest for a bit, that’s what I did. I stopped and got off my bike with tears of exhaustion streaming down my face. 

Thankfully, there was a park ranger with a pickup that our leader talked into taking our four-person group up the mountain to our campsite for that night.

How did James 1:19–27 remind me of this experience?

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From Crippled Feet to the Love of God

love

Several years ago, I developed plantar fasciitis.

I had been pushing myself with lots of walking prior to going on a cruise trip with my husband’s family.

On the last full day of the cruise, my husband and I walked over ten miles in one day.

When I stood up after the evening meal, I could not put any weight on my left foot. 

I was still limping the next day when we had to navigate getting off the ship and through the airports to return home.

Once we were finally home and I elevated my feet, I realized both feet were in pain.

For the next three years, I lived in tennis shoes because of this injury. Going barefoot was excruciating.

Thankfully, over time and with a commitment to wearing good shoes and plenty of stretching exercises, I have only occasional flare-ups.

 Are you wondering why I’m talking about my crippled feet on a Bible study blog?

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How Do You Practice Hospitality?

hospitality

My husband arranged for us to stay in a bed-and-breakfast called Max Paul for our first anniversary.

Each room had a distinct theme. Ours was based on an English Garden.

In the morning, upon hearing a gentle knock on the door of our room, we found a bountiful tray of breakfast delights and a pot of tea ready for us to enjoy. The host who had delivered it had disappeared before we opened the door.

On another occasion, we enjoyed a “bed and beach” stay in Oregon. The place had a tiny one-bedroom cottage with a deck, access to a large game room, a hot tub, and private beach access. There were pastries, tea, and other food items available as well for us to enjoy. The owner, like Max Paul’s bed-and-breakfast, greeted us on the night we arrived but otherwise left us alone.

Both locations were great for our introverted natures to enjoy solitude and rest together.

Sadly, neither of these places exists for public rental today. They tore Max Paul down to make room for an expanded highway. The “bed and beach” is no longer found in web searches for reasons unknown.

But there are many more options for vacation rentals from Airbnb and Vrbo to boutique hotels and large chains we can take advantage of for this purpose today.

These experiences are one type of hospitality. But are they the type of hospitality in 1 Peter 4:9?

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SNOW DAY!

snowday

I enjoyed a snow day on Sunday, January 16th.

Living in South Carolina snow is a rare treat for this Midwesterner.

Because snow days are so rare in this area our city shuts down except for emergency workers and those dealing with any power outages that occur.

Thankfully, my household never lost power. We were able to enjoy watching the snow fall from the safety of our warm home.

I chose to not work on a post yesterday because I wanted to cherish the snow day.

Today, as the winter storm has finished dusting the earth with this fascinating white frozen water and the sun is starting to melt it away, I decided to share with you some favorite references to snow from scripture.

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Being Grateful During Difficulties

grateful

I was distracted.

Shortly before I sat down at the computer to write we received news that a family member has entered the active dying phase.

Instead of writing a post for this blog what I really wanted to do was mindlessly play a card game on my computer or watch a movie where I did not have to think much about the plot line but just enjoy the scenery, clothing, or humor.

But instead, I texted friends who I knew I could ask to pray for the situation.

Each of them responded to me with a short prayer and encouragement.

I then opened my planning schedule to see what verse of scripture I had planned to work on today and read these words:

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