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Learning how to enjoy life again!

First of all, if you haven't been on my website before, welcome! And for those of you returning, welcome back!

In the last 11 months, our lives have changed dramatically. What seemed commonplace just last year is now ever-changing. This causes disruptions in things we used to do on a routine basis and expectations that we had of life are continually in flux.

birds in flight by the beach
Learning how to enjoy life again

Now though, I'd like you to take a minute and look at the picture here on the right or above on a Smartphone.

What do you see there?

You may be having thoughts about other things that need to get done right away or you may be struggling with a decision that you have to make.

But God is calling us to something better. He's reaching out His hand to offer us life to the fullest.

I've been reading a book by a Christian Author named John Eldredge. The book is titled: Get your life back: Everyday practices for a world gone mad. In addition to the book, he developed something for smartphones called the One Minute Pause app.

It may seem ironic that a Christian counselor and author who's struggling with personal space and boundaries would develop yet another time consuming app. But if you think about it, since technology is consuming so much of our waking time, using it to help remind us that we need to put margin back in our lives makes some sense. After all, according to research John did, he states that we consume an average of 10 hours daily of media. Imagine that, 10 hours!

This amount of consumption causes so many problems for our inner peace and ability to just process information normally. It affects our sleeping patterns and daily routines and causes us to be like Pavlov dogs whenever we hear a familiar 'ping' or 'chime'.

Just to be clear, I'm not endorsing any of John Eldredge's work. I am recommending that we all get back to our lives without getting drug into the daily drama of this rattled, tattered world we live in. How you do that may look completely different, and that's good!

As I was contemplating what to write on this blog posting and I was feeling nudged by the Holy Spirit to write it, I realized that being a musician has many similar parallels to life that could help demonstrate how to do this.

If you're a musician or just a lover of it, you can understand this.

Every piece of music that I enjoy has a similar format: an introduction, verses, a chorus, perhaps a bridge, maybe an instrumental solo, and an ending. A well constructed piece of music also has different dynamic highs and lows as well as varying rhythms.

Isn't this like your typical day? You probably have a typical quiet waking time, then a pattern or rhythm of getting into your day, a couple of pauses or breaks, another perhaps intense time, then a letting down of your hair, and finally a closing time.

At least, this is probably what it USED to look like! It may be very erratic and fluctuating now, but guess what, you can get into a regular rhythm with God's help!

Here's the hard part - it's going to take some effort! You're going to have to deliberately decide that you want to change some ingrained habits.

One of the ways I do this is by deliberately choosing to put aside the iPad, the iPhone or the computer and spend quiet time. It's incredibly freeing!

By the way, I'm not saying this will be easy. It is possible though with a little effort. It also means changing some of our belief systems that may be saying: "That text is probably very important." or "What if I miss that important stream?"

Do you see how that can trap us into believing in false hope? It can be very draining.

What you can do is what I've been doing - enjoy God's creation!

Even if you can't get away from your desk, you can take a few moments to look at something beautiful.

God created so much beauty around us and we constantly miss it. With a little effort though, we can start seeing it again.

You'll be surprised how your heart and mind will start to react when you do this. I was so surprised that I wrote a poem that I'm sharing at the end of this post.

Please be encouraged today that God loves you and He wants the best for you. He also wants you to experience the joy of His creation every day!

My pause

I paused and watched the clouds today;

They blew gently in the gray skies.

Three birds flew over, hearkening to each other,

Come, let's go this way.

As I watched and listened, I heard God softly whisper:

"I love you"

in the swaying of the birch leaves.

How easy it is to miss such simple things -

the falling rain,

the gentle breeze.

He makes creation anew each day.

Let's stop, pause, and say:

I love you too!

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