Friday, February 26, 2010

Training Week 10

It's hard to believe that I only have 8 more weeks of training before I run my second marathon. Unfortunately, this has been a very poor week of training for me. I am not a morning person. The first 20-30 minutes of my day I am stuck on autopilot. Now, you would think that this would be a sign to me that I should run in the evenings (and I do occasionally), but that means missing time with family.
I have tried to make up for the missed runs about doing cardio workouts and plyometrics at the house, but this weekend I have a 17 mile run planned that I know I can't miss.  Hopefully, by sharing my plans on the blog I have greater pressure to get it done.
So my plan for next week (following Hal Higdon's Novice 2 plan):
Monday: rest
Tuesday: 5 miles
Wednesday: 8 miles
Thursday: 5 miles
Friday: rest
Saturday: I suppose to run 18 miles. I am going to move that run to next Saturday.
Sunday: This should be a rest day, instead I am running in The Little Rock Marathon Relay.  I have the longest and most hilly section of the course, which I hope will get me ready for the hills I will face in Nashville.
In my training runs so far I have been doing a lot of hills, so I feel ready for, but having not seen the course yet, i wonder how the hills will compare.
By the way, I also turn 30 this weekend. So Happy Birthday to me.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Becoming the Bread

In Mark 6 the writer connects 3 stories about bread that are important for any disciple to learn.  In the first, Jesus sends out his disciples in order to heal the sick and cast out demons.  As they prepare to depart the first instruction is "don't take any bread." That seems strange as they prepare to travel. As the father of 3 kids, I always make sure we have plenty of snacks in the car before we head out.
Lesson #1: God wants to depend on him for your needs.
Following this we told about John the Baptist being in jail.  As he is there, Herod's step-daughter dances for him, pleasing him to the extent that we promises her anything she desires. Like any normal girl she asks for the head of John (just the accessory that anyone would want).  John's head is immediately brought to her on a platter. You may wander what is the connection with bread. let me ask you, what is normally served on a platter?
Lesson #2: Sometimes God will ask you to become the bread.
Finally, the disciples are back with Jesus and he has resumed his teaching. The crowds have been following and now they are hungry.  Jesus tells the disciples to feed to crowd (remember they have already learned to depend on God for their needs!) They say they cannot, a young boy provides his lunch for 5,000 people and they collect 12 baskets of leftovers.
Lesson #3: Sometimes God provides an overwhelming abundance to your need.

We tend to like lessons 1 and 3, but 2 really throws us.
If John, Jesus's cousin, the New Elijah, the one to prepare for the coming Messiah got this treatment, can we expect it to be any different for us at some point in our lives?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

40 Days of Lent

No, I am not having trouble with my dryer. For the first time in my life I am observing Lent (the 40 days from Ash Wednesday until Easter). It seemed like a natural thing to do this year since I am breaking the year down into 40 day segments in order to focus on various disciplines in my life.
I started the year by reading through the Bible in 40 days. Now I am focusing on Lent.  Having never done this before there is a lot that I still need to learn. From what I have read about the history of Lent, the purpose is to focus on what Christ was preparing to give up (his life) so you give something up.  Sounds like a fast to me.  I just happened to come across Forty Days of Water, sponsored by Blood:Water Mission. The goal of Blood:Water Mission is to provide clean drinking water for those who don't have it. Clean water is something that easily gets taken for granted. I go to the fridges or the sink and get clean water. I go to my shower and get clean. Even the water I use to flush my toilet is cleaner than the water that millions of people drink on a daily basis. So here's how the 40 Days works: drink water for 40 days. Then take the money that you saved from not drinking your $1 Dr. Pepper, $1.25 sweet tea, or $5 Starbucks and donate it to Blood:Water so that they can build wells that will provide clean drinking water for years to come.
Right now I am a week into it. I have had a couple of slims (the second day I had milk at breakfast). I am not a morning person, so I am on autopilot the first 20 minutes of the day. With Lent you also get Sundays off, but I won't tell you how many Cokes I had this past Sunday. I realize this not good for the spirit of Lent or the purpose of saving money for Blood:Water Mission (although I did not pay for any of these drinks). Anyway, I'll try to do better this weekend.
If anyone else is participating in the 40 Days of Water or Lent in general, I would love to hear your thoughts/insights and have the opportunity to encourage one another as we focus on Christ.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

40 Day Bible Reading

The first 40 days of 2010 are now over.  To start of this new year I challenged myself to read through the entire Bible and I proud to say, that today, after lunch, I completed the task set before me.  I
I have tried to read through the Bible each year since I was a freshman in college.  As a Bible major we were expected to read through of it during the year and the habit has stuck.  Honestly, I have to say that I have not always read every verse, but the goal and the attempt has always been there.
This year I had a couple of new twists to help me reach my goal.  First, I started with the Chronological reading plan provide BlueLetter at YouVersion.  YouVersion provides several different reading plans that can be customized to meet your needs.  On the site there are also several translations of the Bible and audio Bibles for those who want to listen in the office (this was especially helpful on days when I feel behind and need to catch up quickly during my lunch break).
Each year I also try to use a new translation, or at least one that I haven't read in awhile.  In general I use the ESV for daily use.  For the Old Testament readings I continued to use the ESV but when I got to the New Testament I switched to The Voice.
The Voice is a brand new translation released by Thomas Nelson that features biblical scholarship and contemporary artists/writers/speakers.  I definitely enjoyed reading the scriptures in a new voice.  The wording of text flows quite smoothly, making long reading session easy.  The only difficulty I saw was that the devotional thoughts are sprinkled throughout in a haphazard way, breaking off the text of scripture in ways that made finding your place harder than it should have to be.
The text also features some lines that are in italics, which indicates that the phrasing is not original to the text, but has rather been added by the contributing writers.  In some cases this done as as meanings of clarification or to help the reader understand some pertinent background information.  For example, in 2 Corinthians 5:1 the writers add the following introduction to Paul's discussion about the earthly body being a tent:
"Let me try to explain what I'm talking about in a way that makes the most sense to me as a tentmaker."

Now, certainly this does not change the meaning of the text.  However, Paul, guided by the Holy Spirit, felt no need to include such a remark in the text.  Other additions are more worrisome to me.  In John 1:8-11 there are several references to "The Voice" although there is no reference to this in the manuscripts used to translate the text.  The decision to make such an addition is only made more curious by the make that the team chose to call their new translation "The Voice."   
I also found it interesting that through the work "baptism" is translated as "ceremonial washing" with a footnote explaining that it literally means "immersion."  Personally, I would have preferred the actually translate the word and put immersion in the text.  The use of the phrase "ceremonial washing" seems to downplay its important role in the work of salvation, at least as I read it.
I am sure that there are many other strengths and weaknesses of this translations (as there are of any translation).  I will leave it work brighter men and and women than I to discuss the exact nature of the words that were chosen.  I enjoyed reading this translation.  As I said, I regularly read from various translations in order to get to fuller picture of what God is communicating. It will remain a helpful tool in library, that I will likely come back to again and again.  However, this will not become my everyday Bible.  An everyday Bible should be one that is a trusted translation.  For me that means one that can be understood and one that tries to convene, as closely as possible the original meaning of the NT manuscripts. 

A copy of the Voice was provided by Thomas Nelson for review.  


Related Posts with Thumbnails