Creating Realistic Goals

I have a bad habit of setting up unrealistic goals for myself. 

There’s nothing wrong with setting goals that stretch you, but be careful to not beat yourself up during the stretching process. 

I am working on a writing project that is definitely stretching me!

The project is helping a phD candidate in an electrical engineering program turn his research into a written dissertation. 

Reading the material and translating the data takes time–which means that setting realistic goals is important. 

I’ve been working on this project less than a week and I’ve already logged in 5 hours. 

Setting realistic goals keeps you and your project collaborators on the same page. 

There’s also no shame in being honest about your limitations and potential time constraints. 

I already know that having this proposal completely finished by Friday (what we agreed upon last Saturday) will not happen. 

I am working diligently to get as much done as possible, but I have also communicated this fact to my employer, the student. 

What I am learning as I begin this journey is that you can never go wrong in planning and goal setting by telling the truth. 

Momentary Challenges

I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to talk with my family and friends a bit more than I was during the school year. 

Technology makes it easy to stay in touch. Thanks to Facebook, email, text, and FaceTime living so far away is much more bearable. 

Honestly, I have struggled with a touch of homesickness the last week. 

I know that Rhema is where I’m supposed to be, but these feelings can creep up faster than you realize. 

Reminding myself what this season is all about–following the Holy Spirit–is why I chose to move away. 

This is something I needed and wanted to do. 

And while I do miss my family and friends, I know that they are supportive of my desire to follow God. 

I’ve come face to face with homesickness ( and I’m sure this won’t be the last time).

I’m also living in such a sweet season of blessing. 

The amount of stuff I’m learning at school and in ministry service is more than I ever imagined.

It makes these momentary challenges worth it. 

A Redeemed Mind

I found some old history papers from college. Lots of memories came back! 

The rush of reaching the page requirements and thinking of the most academic way of saying something without sounding too boring.

What I remembered most is how much I enjoyed writing those papers. Every paper was an adventure–and I never minded the research, either. 

All of that reading and digging…

I was stretched in many ways during college, ways that I often miss now that I’ve graduated.

Of course, Rhema presents it’s own challenges. My spirit man is getting a real workout! The coolest thing is seeing how my time in a more “academic” setting is helping me now that I’m in Bible school.

The mind and the spirit are powerful when used together. 

Many don’t see it this way, but it’s true. It reminds me of a quote by R.C. Sproul:

An unlearned Christian is no match for a learned skeptic. 

Christians must be able to accurately discuss what they believe with others.

Notice that I didn’t say defend because I don’t believe it’s our job to defend the Scriptures. They have stood the test of time and can defend themselves. 

For the most part, people aren’t attacking the Bible–they just want you to explain it to them.

Most Christians, however, are quite terrible at engaging in conversations about their beliefs. They don’t know the scriptures, are not well read, and are downright mean in their approach to healthy discussions about faith. 

You can be a learned Christian and not:

  • Carry around a large family Bible
  • Talk in esoteric terms
  • Go to Bible school or seminary

 

Christians need to know that they don’t have to check their brains at the door when they accept Christ. 

No, no! Your redeemed mind is a valuable asset in the Kingdom of God.

 

Healthy Introspection

Introspection: the examination or observation of one’s own mental and emotional processes.

I am an overly introspective person.

Is there a group called Over-Introspective Anonymous? 

If so, I need to go because the amount of time that I spend thinking things through is astronomical.

And annoying…..

There’s nothing wrong with knowing what you believe.

There’s nothing wrong with critical thinking.

It’s just that some of my “thinking” is actually tied to people pleasing. 

Ouch.

I am a recovering people pleaser and perfectionist. Old habits die hard. Just when I think that I’ve gotten it under control….

Well, you know how that sentence ends.

If your thoughts constantly revolve around “What will people think of me?” then that’s a sign that people pleasing is your motive. 

Eleanor Roosevelt once said:

“You wouldn’t worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do.”

Loosen up!

It’s okay.

You’re okay.

Keep moving towards your dreams.

Put away the measuring stick. There’s no need to compare yourself to others. You’re not them and they’re not you. 

I say all of these things as reminders to myself, but I know that we’ve all been there.

This is when the healthy use of introspection comes in handy. 

I only noticed my old habits creeping back in after reading through my last few posts and thinking back on several conversations from earlier in the week.

Now I know what areas need more attention. 

And it has nothing to do with what someone else thinks and everything to do with me growing, which is the natural byproduct of healthy introspection.

The Knowledge Gap

I’m amazed at how much information there is in our world in relationship to how little I know. 

Does anyone remember the website Stumble Upon?

In thinking about this topic, I did a quick Google search and it turns out they’re still around! 

Back in my college days, one of my many procrastination tools was to check out cool new websites via Stumble Upon. It was possible to be on that website for at least an hour…

There are websites that I still enjoy today that I found using Stumble Upon. There’s no way that I could’ve found them on my own, either. Think about the amount of new content that we have access to everyday:  

  • Websites
  • YouTube videos.
  • Pictures
  • Music
  • Apps
  • Movies
  • TV shows
  • Games
  • Books

I’m reminded of the words of King Solomon: 

 But regarding anything beyond this, dear friend, go easy. There’s no end to the publishing of books, and constant study wears you out so you’re no good for anything else. The last and final word is this: Fear God. Do what he tells you.

I think it’s safe to say that there’s no end to the releasing of new content.As one of my English professors put it:

The only thing that makes your writing original is that you wrote it. The various devices of storytelling and poetry have been around way before you were around and will continue way after you’re gone.

This is a topic that keeps me humble and also shows me just how big God is. Imagine what He thinks! He created everything and knows everything and sees everything.

My brain started smoking just by thinking about all of this….

While my goal is to learn as much as I can, it’s safe to say that there will always be a large gap between what I know and how much more there is to know. 

 

 

All about singin’

I retaught myself a song from my childhood….

I can now sing you the books of the Old Testament. If you’d like to request a special performance, just drop me a comment below.

What I find most amazing is that I remembered half of the song, but the part with all the major and minor prophets had me a bit tongue tied. 

As a kid, you can remember anything if it’s in a song. My little brothers and sisters can sing you the entire timeline of world history!

I guess this shouldn’t be surprising because the only reason I know the multiplication tables is Ms. Eiser’s 3rd grade math class. She had 45s (that’s a type of record btw) of math songs.

Today’s post is short–finals start tomorrow–but I have a fun question for us to talk about:

What songs do you remember from childhood (from school or church) that you can still sing today?  

 

Helping with Media

I got to run camera for the first time today. The media department didn’t really teach me to swim–they just threw me into the pool! 

And it was awesome!

I observed Sunday morning and evening. Someone showed me the basics of how to run the camera before the evening service, but that was it. 

Today the supervisor walked me through step by step–through my headphones–how to set up the different kinds of shots.

What was strange was to look up at the big screens and see that my shot could be seen by everyone…

Whoa! 

Plus, I did a lot of zoom shots (kind of like panoramic action shots) which was seen by everyone on watching online. 

I look forward to learning more and more about running camera because it’s a valuable skill that helps ministries get the gospel message spread around the world.

Remember what I told you a few days ago? 

I’m not against the use of technology in the church.

Just go to church and get involved yourself! 

Then listen to podcasts and watch the sermons again on YouTube.

I listen to teachings all the time at work. And today I paid particular attention to the quality of the video and the kind of shots being used. 

Kinda cool to think that one day a sermon that I helped record will be online for someone else to watch.

No one will know it was me who helped, but I’ll know. God will know, too, which is all that matters anyway.