Mike&Sarah

Tag Archive: blog

Horns

Is that honking in my head or on the street? I can’t tell anymore. For the last hour someone’s car alarm has been going off (or would one say ‘going on’?), and now my head throbs with the incessant honking of that unwanted intrusion.

When I think of “horns,” happy images of ticker-tape parades come to mind, followed by the cheery, bold, gold colors of a big brass band. But the lone honking car horn in the middle of the night is neither happy nor cheery.

I awoke from a deep sleep to the horrible sound and feared it was our car, so I lept out of bed and ran to the window. I realized with a sigh of relief that it wasn’t our car. But that means I can’t fix it.

After about forty-five minutes of longing for sleep while tucked into the soft, warm covers on our sublet’s Tempur-Pedic mattress, I am now on the sofa in the living room. I looked out the window again to confirm that our car is not the one disturbing my sleep, and now I’ve already read and responded to some email. I read a few articles for meetings next week, and now I’m sharing my delirium with anyone who stumbles upon our website.

For those of you who were wondering: Yes. Mike is sleeping through this Ritcher-scale-like magnitude event. He has the gift of sleep.

And seriously, I still hear that alarm, but I don’t know if it is really going off, or simply going off in my head. This is a bit disturbing.

Blog Readers

In response to my last post about wanting to keep up with blogs, Rebekah of Simply Rebekah gave me easy how-to steps to start up gReader, Google’s system to manage all your blogs. Now I log into reader.google.com each day, and gReader lists each post for me, like an email inbox.

All day, while I’m working or resting, gReader culls the outer reaches of the internet to collect the posts to which I’ve subscribed and then I can choose which posts to read, and which ones to file for later, or never.

Rebekah suggested that I switch my “feed settings” to “sort by oldest” so that they come in chronologically.  I like that system.  I did it.

I love it, for now I don’t have to search the internet for different websites because gReader does the work for me. When someone mentions a website or blog that sounds interesting, I simply add the address to my subscription list with gReader, and it collects posts for me to read.

It wasn’t hard to set up, either!  This is such a GREAT tool. I knew it existed, but I assumed it was hard or complicated to set up. I was so wrong, and I’m so happy now. What fun to discover helpful and interesting things like how to fold t-shirts quickly, Japanese style!

Prayer as Petition

Ever have one of those days where it seems like you discover all the breadcrumbs and follow them to a destination?  I’ve had a day like that today.  It’s like God is calling me to a deeper maturity when it comes to prayer. All too often I view prayer as dull and boring.  But today I followed the breadcrumbs.  I didn’t simply see the breadcrumbs then turn away, but I followed the breadcrumbs.  Into the rabbit hole.

Before I lose you in my mixed metaphors, let me just tell you how I end up here.

photo by Lel4nd

Over the last few months it seems like PRAYER has been a common theme in conversations, books and journal entries.  I blogged about feeling challenged to pray AUDACIOUS PRAYERS back in February.  Last week was CCC’s twice yearly Worldwide Day of Prayer.  Sunday the guest pastor at my church preached on prayer from the parable of the persistent widow, and this morning Oswald Chamber’s My Utmost for his Highest was on, yes, PRAYER.

So I settled in for a soak in the concept of prayer.  I looked up the definitions to words like supplication and intercession.  I discovered that a common definition to these synonyms for prayer is petition, which then sent me down a trail wondering about the character traits of a good petitioner. What gives them the persistence to pursue the hundreds of signatures they need for their petition to be heard by those in power?  What is their goal in having a petition?  What do they long to see happen as a result of their efforts?  Is it worth it to them?

Petition:  a formally drawn request…addressed to a person in authority or power soliciting some favor, right, mercy or other benefit.  Request made for something desired.  To beg or request.

What would happen if, as the guest pastor asked on Sunday, God answered the prayers we prayed last year?  Most likely we’d all have safe travel and good health.  But as that pastor asked, what strongholds would be torn down?  What relationships reconciled?  Do we really trust God enough to petition Him for the things that really matter? Are we willing to be persistent in gathering others to join with us or to continually ask Him?

I now have a petition to God.  I’m asking Him for three things.  Three very specific things that I cannot make happen on my own.  Only He can orchestrate conversations, events and people to see these three things happen.  And because of that, only He will get the credit.  I’m ready to persist in asking!

Are you ready to  petition God for what really matters?  For what only He can do?

Learnin’

Yesterday I attended two seminars hosted by The Wealth Building Annex of Tampa, FL.  I felt like I was drinking from the fire hydrant!  For weeks I’ve been slowly trying to figure out how to build out this WordPress site, and I’ve struggled!  But the morning seminar was all about blogging, including some great tips to make the most of your personal site.  The evening session talked about branding yourself so that you and your mission stand out in the crowd.

These are not the usual kinds of seminars for people like me who are involved in faith-based non-profits, ministries and churches.  It almost seems like an oxymoron for a missionary to think about branding, right?  Well, I would’ve agreed with that statement before my day in Tampa!

I’m so grateful to my friends Nile & Rosemary for inviting me to this incredible day.  I’m starting to incorporate some of the nuggets I gleaned from those insightful people, and I’m excited about the things I have yet to learn!  (Keep an eye out for videos one day soon!)