Christian Living

Callings & Announcement

Yay! I’m so excited to share my news with you guys! Our podcast is (finally!!!) launching! Check us out at epiceverydaynow.com. It’s been a long, grueling process, but we’ve finally gotten it recorded and hooked up with with various pod catchers things.

What is our podcast about? Well, I’m so glad you asked 😉 If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know how transformative Peter Ralston’s five Tai Chi principles are. The spiritual versions of them are written all over the Bible. Obviously, that means they’re not new, but I really like how Peter Ralston organizes them. It makes it easy to ask yourself whether you’re calm, surrendered, centered, connected, and complete, or as we say to ask yourself if you’re doing the CSC’s. Only five words to remember but so much ground covered. Every weekday we’ll be covering one of the principles. We have different topics from week to week.

Why did we decide to start said podcast? Lots of reasons. One is that we’re passionate about helping other people live their callings–get rid of the things entangling them and run the race. The other is that we need that daily reminder. This week I’ve been listening to our show in the mornings, and it’s really helped re-ground me. I know my day goes better when I do the CSC’s. But it helps to be reminded of that fact every morning. Hence, creating our ~15 minute podcast.

And the CSC’s are all about living calling. It’s impossible to fulfill your calling if you’re anxious, doing things on your own (vs. with the Holy Spirit), trying to be someone you’re not, isolated, and compartmentalized.

I just finished Beth Moore’s study on 2 Timothy called Entrusted. One of the main things I got out of it was that theme of calling. Paul tells Timothy: For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands (2 Tim. 1:6, NIV). Guard the good treasure entrusted to you, with the help of the Holy Spirit who dwells in us (2 Tim. 1:14, NIV). But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry (2 Tim. 4:5, NIV).

It’s easy to get caught up in the minutiae of life, to be swept up in our schedules and our to-do lists and work or kids or housekeeping, etc., etc. Or to get caught up in the craziness of our society. In 2 Timothy, Paul is at the end of his life. He’s passing on the torch to his “true son in the faith.” Time is short. That’s what I heard when Paul was talking about his race being run. We don’t have time to be caught up in this world. We have an eternal calling that matters. One that isn’t occasional. One that’s every day. One that requires us to run the race, to pour ourselves out. One that isn’t going to happen accidentally. What you do today matters. What I do today matters.

So! If you have a chance, listen to our podcast.EED announcement.jpgI’ve definitely needed those daily reminders to refocus on what’s important.

Advertisements
Movies

Bookshelf Tour: Speed Racer (the movie)

So, I was thinking books when I said “bookshelf tour,” but well, maybe I should have named it “story tour” because there a movies that are just as important to me as books. As I’ve mentioned, Speed Racer is one of my soul’s “chiropractic adjustments.” Most people we’ve shared that movie with just don’t get it, but I love it! Fortunately, our kids do get it 🙂

Okay, so for starters, lots of people can’t get over the cinematography. The film was done by the Wachowskis (they also did the Matrix if you’re not familiar with them) in 2008, and they really worked to keep the cartoon feel for people who loved the old cartoon Speed Racer. So, the colors are really bright, and there are some camera shots where you see multiple events happening on-screen at once. It can be a lot. But, once you let go of all that (if you dislike it–I personally thought their story-telling methods were really interesting), it’s easy to see there are some incredible themes.

*SPOILER ALERT*

The way they handle family is so beautiful. After a fight, Pops Racer becomes estranged from his son Rex, who dies in a car accident without ever reconciling. In the beginning Pops believes he lost Rex in the car accident, but later, when his son Speed is in the same situation, he realizes that he lost Rex to the fight because he “let him think a stupid motor company was more important” and he–dah duh dah!–changes. I can’t tell you how beautiful that is to me. He handles the same situation with Speed very differently.

You also see how important family is to all of them throughout the film. They really stick together and encourage each other, despite being aware of each other’s faults.

I absolutely love the way they talk about calling. In the movie, Speed participates in a race in order to try to bring down one of the race fixers. At the time, however, his father doesn’t support him. Mr. Racer tells him “You think you can drive a car and change the world? It doesn’t work that way!” When winning the race doesn’t have the results Speed hoped for, he’s discouraged and upset. Racer X then talks to him about why they race. He says, “You don’t get into a T-180 to become a driver–you do it because you’re driven.” I love that statement. I can’t tell you the number of times I tell myself that. We don’t do what God calls us to do so that we can become a certain kind of person. We do it because we’re driven, because there’s something in our souls that just can’t leave things the way they are. Anyway! At the end of the movie, after Speed wins the last race, the race commentator says “It’s a whole new world!” Basically, the point driven home is that Speed was able to change the world simply by driving a car.

Speed also struggles with why he should keep driving when he finds out that the vast majority of the racing industry has nothing to do with cars or racing, but instead with money and power. He tells his girlfriend, Trixie, that when he’s driving “everything just makes sense.” Throughout the movie, you learn that Speed has been obsessed with driving pretty much since he was born (arguing it’s in his blood). And his mother gives him this beautiful pep talk about how what he does is art, not business. In the end, he drives because it’s part of who he is–not because of what he can get from it. I don’t know about you, but I need that reminder. I need to be told that do flows out of be. I need to be reminded that I mother/teach/write/etc. because of who I am, not in order to try to reach a certain outcome.

On the other hand, I love being reminded that simply by being the person God created me to be God can use me to create “a whole new world.” That my calling isn’t a waste of time even on the days when it feels like it is. And the way that Racer X talks about the world–“it doesn’t matter if racing never changes. What matters is if we let racing change us”–is another reminder for me not to hang my hat on results. Just like Paul talks about it Galatians where he says “what matters is new creation,” what matters in the here and now is who we are–not what we accomplish. God’s the one who accomplishes things. It’s our job to just be who we’re supposed to be (and to act on that–e.g., to actually participate in races if that’s our calling) and God does whatever He’s going to do through all that. Such a comforting thought!

So that’s why we watch Speed Racer. There are some years where we watch it a LOT if our life choices get called into question. For us, watching Speed Racer is a call to “hold the line!” even when there are no results and friends/family members think we’re crazy for doing the things we believe God has called us to do.

Uncategorized

Keys to Finding a Calling

In my Bible study today Beth Moore said something in passing that really hit me. I’ve been working through Children of the Day: 1&2 Thessalonians. I’m really enjoying it. Anyway! Today was on hindrances, and how Paul didn’t let his hindrances actually hinder him. He persevered despite the many, many difficult circumstances he went through (2 Cor. 11; 1 Thess 2). Beth was talking about how amazing it is to let God take the hindrance out of our past pains and she listed a bunch of equations (e.g., Heartbreak-hindrance= depth) (p.70).

One of those equations particularly struck me: “My pain-hindrance=my passion.” As I was thinking about it, I realized how true it is. Pain gets under our skin, makes us care about things we wouldn’t normally care about. And once you’ve worked through that pain, you still care about the thing that’s left. For instance, I’m passionate about natural health because I have a chronic illness and I’ve done the whole “do what your doctor says without questioning it” thing and it didn’t work for me. I’m also passionate about women in the church because I got told multiple times in high school and college that there wasn’t a place for me in the church (other than to just attend or do nursery or worship team).

Anyway, as I was thinking through all the things I’m passionate about, I realized that they’ve all come out of some painful situation that God has transformed through His love. And He’s been faithful to provide outlets for me to use that passion in various ways.

I wish, however, that we would talk about that in the church. You know, when we’re giving people spiritual gifts tests and telling them that God has something for them in a vague, general sort of way. It would have been nice to have someone say: here’s your gifting; look at whatever the most painful experiences of your life have been to figure out what you’re passionate about, and ask God to combine the two. (Or something along those lines.)

It’s definitely something I’m going to be telling my children when they ask about what God might be calling them to do.