Good Things In, Good Things Out
This is basically a journal entry, so feel honored that I am letting you into my journal*
|This is not what my journal looks like, but I can dream|
I am trying something new in my life, instead of blaming others, or my current environment, for whatever may be bothering me at a certain time I am going to start blaming myself. Not hating on myself, or degrading myself, but taking responsibility for my own actions and how those actions directly affect me (DUH) and also those around me.
I am going to start intentionally living a life pleasing to my body, my environment, (meaning my locale and people I interact with, but being environmentally friendly is important as well), my health, and my creator, God.
Here are some ways I plan to help live an intentionally pleasing life:
I feel so very often I have good intentions, but I am too lazy or distracted to fully execute those intents. Even if it is just something simple like remembering to take out the pizza box that has been sitting by my apartment door for three days now because I am simply too preoccupied with other things to walk the 40 ft to my dumpster, you know, stuff like that.
In Hebrews 13 verse 16 the author of Hebrews says this:
“And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God.”
Sherman Alexie, one of my favorite modern authors and social commentators tweeted this the other day:
“Dear Christians, if you’re not helping the poor then you fail the Jesus test.”
How true is that? And how often do we all fail the Jesus test??? (TGFS… that means Thank Goodness for Salvation, I made that up just now, feel free to use it liberally)
Part of this “intentional life” is being mindful of others. The needs of others, the pains of others…the broken hearts of others should be a part of your everyday thoughts.
How can I help those around me?
How can I spread joy?
How can I please God by the way I treat others around me?
I want to live a life that is a pleasing offering to God, I want to live my life to the fullest, and part of that is being is caring about others but another important part is being in a healthy relationship with yourself; not being in love with yourself, or anything Kanye-esque, just knowing your limits, your strengths, your needs, and often times learning to push past them to grow.
I want to challenge myself to be aware of all I am doing to my mind and body, and to all I am doing to other’s bodies and minds as well. I think it is healthy to be in communication with your body in that way.
When I am reading the Bible I want to be more cognizant of what I am reading, I don’t want to simply read it to check it off of my to-do list, I want to begin to meditate on what I can take from that specific scripture, I want to understand why God felt the need for me in the 21stcentury to read these stories and narratives about people long past. I want to begin to piece together my narrative using the Biblical narrative as a point of reference.
I want to spend more time speaking to God. I am terrible at this. I am great at reading my Bible, I am a champ at it really, (not really, but kinda) but when it comes time to simply commune with God in a very intimate way, outside of corporate worship, when it is literally just me sitting in silence lifting up prayers and listening for God’s still small voice, I suck BIG TIME.
I am too fidgety, or too busy, or too bored often times and I feel I really need to work on this. I want to be able to sit for long periods and enjoy the friendship and relationship I have with God. If I can spend hours gabbing with my friends about nothing, surely I can spare some time for the big man upstairs. (FYI I’m not talking about a fat neighbor dude who lives upstairs….)
I want to be more mindful of what I let into my mind in regards to media, this doesn’t mean I am going to start only listening to Christian music, or that I will only watch G rated films, I will still listen to lots of Jay and Ye, and I will still watch Judd Apatow’s films (Some of which I would argue have much better ethics than some other “cleaner” films, eg. Bridesmaids or Knocked Up) Instead of just mindlessly listening to Gambino’s latest Camp I want to be careful that I know what I am listening to, and that I know where Don Glover is coming from. And instead of just watching It’s Always Sunny for entertainment, I want to also think about things such as “how can I not be like Dee.”
I want to become more active, even if that means just going for a 5 min walk; I want to start to push myself to a healthier lifestyle. I am very lucky because my university offers yoga and zumba classes as part of my tuition and so I am going to take advantage of those opportunities placed in my path; as well as the beautiful parks surrounding my neighborhoods. I am going to treat the body God placed in my belonging with price and care.
Finally, I want to be attuned to my body in its appetite and digestion. I don’t want to go on a paleo diet of anything wacky like that. I am still going to get a Hot-N-Ready from Little Caesar’s like once a week, I am just going to be more sensitive to what I am putting into my pie-hole. (Said in a Kenneth Parcell voice) I heard once that praying over your food can help you lose weight, I think I can totally agree with that because I believe if we are mindful of what we place in our mouths instead of blindly digging in, then we often think more seriously about the repercussions they may have. (The same goes for many more issues, praying before you do almost anything can be a very helpful and fruitful endeavor!)
So there you go, I don’t know exactly why I felt the need to blog this except that I want moral support as well as I want your input on this life-step.
I hope your life is going spectacular and that you are on your way to living a perfect intentionally God-breathed life.
*In reality this is nothing like one of my journal entries, they are commonly much more like this:
Today I made eye contact with a beardy barista at my local coffee shop. When we get married I think he should wear a baby blue bow tie and his groomsmen will wear navy blue. It should be a mountain rustic wedding. Etc.