Audra Krell

On Purpose

Archive for the category “Christianity”

SCL:Claiming Sports are the ROAE

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(I reviewed this book last week and loved it! The following post is a contest entry. It's a chance to write my own version of stuff christians like and if I win, I'll be featured on Jonathan Acuff's blog Stuff Christians Like.)

We all know those
families at Church. They’re hardly ever there due to the amount of sports their kids participate in, but we’ve heard about them. We see them occasionally if
they aren’t in an “out-of-state-traveling-competitive-team” tournament.

Sometimes only part of the family will show up on any given
Sunday and that’s when we start in. 

If you’re a
Christian family who happens to love sports, use this handy guide for shot
blocking unsolicited advice.

Well-meaning judger: The Krells aren’t here, they had three games this weekend.
Three! They’re totally addicted.

Your response tailored to how many kids you have: We average more like eight games a weekend. An addiction is
something you can’t stop doing. We have three boys who each play two sports.
Sometimes they play double headers. We are talking simple math here friend, not
addiction. 

Well-meaning judger: Sports get in the way of family time.

You: Yes, I can see it would get in the way of couch time in
front of ESPN while your wife blogs and your kids play video games.

Well- meaning judger: You never let your kids play, or just be kids.

You: I’m sorry little Johnny/Jane doesn’t have an athletic
bone in his/her body. We’ll play, I mean pray for you.

Well- meaning judger: Your kids don’t pray enough.

You: They pray before free throws and point toward the
sky in the end zone. That single finger point clearly gives all the glory where
it’s due. Sure Matthew 6:5-6 tells us to pray in a secret place. However it’s
hard to be humble when you play in eight games a weekend. 

Well-meaning judger: Your kids don’t do God’s work; mission work.

You: You just don’t want my kid to witness more than yours.
Obviously when my son kneels in the end zone he’s ministering to the masses.
That’s more effective than knocking on one door at a time.

Well-meaning judger: Your kids give up their right to ask for God’s safety if
they choose to endanger themselves on the insane court of basketball.

You: I’m still searching the Bible for the list of things I
can’t go to God about. When I
find it, if “standing on the soccer field” tops the list, we’ll quit. By the way, I find you very competitive, almost sports-like.

Well-meaning judger: Sports are the ROAE. The root of all evil I tell you.

You: Actually in 1 Tim. 6:10, it says the “love of money” is
a root of all kinds of evil. The words sports and money are not
interchangeable. Unless you’re talking about professional athletes, then indeed
the words are synonymous. But the most my kid has asked for is to “show
him the Gatorade.”

And finally, when they next level it by stating “Asking God for a win
implies that he is an arbitrary God.” You simply reply: I don’t know much, but
Jesus loves me, this I know.

Arbitrary or not, this I know.

For the Love of Lent

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When I was young, the season of Lent meant managing my friends. At the end of every February I'd make mental notes like these: 

Don't invite Sally Sweet to spend the night, she's given up sugar for Lent. What's The Love Boat and Fantasy Island without a Big Gulp and a candy bar?

And later as a teen:

Please don't let Tom Foolery ask me out! I heard he's given up fun for Lent.

And then as a young adult:

Better not invite the Legume family over for dinner this month, they've given up meat for lent. Whatever would I serve them, rabbit food?

It was all about avoiding those who were avoiding the good stuff. 

Occasionally over the years I'd jump in and try to give up something, touting my omission to anyone who would listen. Finally I realized that fasting from something wasn't enough, I needed to use that time to privately grow and know God.

So this year I'm not giving up Starbucks (shocker), red meat, or my Crazy Heart soundtrack, rather I gave up my notions of what the Lenten season is. I put away past experiences and ideas and started from square one. I researched, read and prayed about Lent and believe I'm different because of it.

Most noticeably, I've learned that Lent isn't about me and my power to preclude. While it's difficult to enter into this season of sadness, joy always comes in the morning and we will celebrate with joy on Easter. 

We will celebrate God, who with his abilities and power is the only reason I can do anything at all.

Pure Pleasure

Pure Pleasure

Have you ever been asked these questions?

  • How can you justify a $4.00 coffee when people in Africa are starving?
  • Should you really buy that nice of a car when you could give the money to the poor?
  • Do think you should go to the movies, concert or the game; isn't your time better spent volunteering somewhere?
  • Do you need the latest computer when you're lucky to have one at all?
  • I didn't know you drink, aren't you a Christian?

Maybe others haven't asked questions like these, but maybe you ask yourself and live with guilt every time you experience something pleasurable.

If so, Pure Pleasure by Gary Thomas is the book for you. Gary guides the reader through God's design for grace based living, which very much does include pleasure. God wants his children to live happily and to enjoy good things.

If we never experience guilt free pleasure, how can we give it away? If we cannot bring pleasure to others, we aren't living with abandon.

I want to bring pleasure to one lucky reader. Leave a comment on the biggest "guilt" question you think about or are asked the most.If I choose your name at random, I'll send you my copy of Pure Pleasure at the beginning of next week.

Click my Amazon box at the bottom of the page to order your copy today.

Special thank you to Zondervan for providing me a copy to review.

 

A Chance to Choose

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For some it's the dreaded blank fortune. What could it possibly mean if you crack open a Chinese cookie that has well, nothing in it? Is your future short and bleak? Have you been forgotten?

Around here, we choose to see it as a blank slate. A canvass for anything and everything. A chance to make the choice, decide just how life is going to be. An opportunity to be happy with the life God has given us.

Just got back from Vegas, there was no foreboding cookie preceding our trip and everyone came home with all their body parts. By the way, that was no small feat in Vegas on Halloween.

For now, all is well. The glass is at least half full and as we approach the magnificence of Christmas, may we help the cup of others,to overflow.

The Natural

Cimg0655 Since my gym keeps showing the same movies over and over, as if there are only five movies in the world, I have seen parts of The Natural about 60 times.  I do love baseball, so that movie is great for me. 

In the beginning, the Dad is talking to his son about how the son has a gift, how he’s a natural. Dad says he must develop the gift, because if he just goes on talent alone, he will fail.

Every single one of us has been given countless gifts by the One who created us.  I’ve spent so much time questioning what gifts I have, if I really have gifts, why they aren’t being used more and on and on.  All that time could have been used to develop the gifts and then those questions wouldn’t have needed to be asked.

Life simply doesn’t work well when you don’t develop the gifts. 

So I am off with one of the most handsome traveling companions ever, we are going to the Saddleback Worship Conference to develop and further our God given talents and gifts. 

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