Life in Stride Blog

Rest is one of those things we know we need but never get enough. No matter how much I sleep or how long I "unwind," I still feel exhausted.  But, if you're like me, you think rest is just downtime or sleep, but apparently, sleep is just one part of the rest requirement.  I've been reading the book Sacred Rest: Recover Your Life, Renew Your Energy, Restore Your Sanity by Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith, and she says that there are seven types of rest that we need: physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, sensory, creative.  When we are missing or even just not properly utilizing any one of these areas of rest, it can cause us to feel off or exhausted.    Here are some snippets from her book: We've conditioned ourselves to disregard the signs our bodies give us and push through to the point of exhaustion or damage. Healing occurs when we...

The question asked was, "What's missing from today's Christian culture?" No one answered. I'm not sure if it's because none of us had an answer, or we were just afraid to say it. How would you answer this question? Me? I would say that we're missing some, "Do unto others" and "love thy neighbor," and "least of these" kinda sacrificial love in our Christian Culture. I know I am. I struggle to want to show Christ-honoring love -- often. It takes time and effort. It's inconvenient and messy. It's uncomfortable...

“You come to the help of those who gladly do right, who remember your ways. But when we continued to sin against them, you were angry. How then can we be saved? All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind, our sins sweep us away.” Isaiah 64:5-6   It is my opinion that one of the worst smells ever is the stagnant stench of a dirty, moist, on the verge of mold dish rag. This stench radiates from the rag like a dead animal.   It’s hard to imagine that all of our good deeds, our righteous acts, could be like that stinky dish towel. But that’s exactly what Isaiah is saying.   What could cause such a thing to happen?  Sin.   Sin spoils, rots, decays- taints even our best efforts.   “How then can we be saved?” Isaiah...

The movie Evan Almighty takes the story of Noah and gives it a bit of a modern twist. It is a controversial movie among Christians. The portrayal of God and Noah isn't true to Biblical form; however, there are some great teachable points. One of my favorites is when Morgan Freeman, who portrayed God, poses the question, "When we pray for something, does God simply give it to us or provide opportunities to exercise that trait?" ...

In college, I had the opportunity to go to Belarus as part of a mission team. It was such a great experience. I loved being in a different culture, navigating obstacles like language barriers and cultural norms, and getting to share Christ with college students with whom I would not otherwise have crossed paths. I was reminded of this time in Belarus during my reading today. Our team boarded a trolley, heading across town to an evening event. The night lights were beautiful. I stood by the window, mesmerized when the stench of vodka-soaked breath permeated the air. I turned to see that I was cornered by an intoxicated Belarusian who was quite the close talker and really pouring his heart out to me...

Faith is foundational. It's the catalysis grace needs for Salvation (Eph. 2:8) and without out it, it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6). Active faith brings healing like the woman with the bleeding issue (Mark 5:34) and even a minuscule amount can do big impossible things like move mountains (Matt. 17:20). Faith is complex. We cannot see it, but it's literally the substance and evidence of our life through Christ and our future home with Him. (Heb. 11:1). Bold faith beacons people to follow Christ, and faith of every size is honored by God and multiplied by His faithfulness. Lots of days, my faith reflects failure more than hope. My big and bold looks more like reluctant and unwilling.   But thankfully, God's faithfulness doesn't rely on mine. His work gets done in-spite of me.  But, because our God IS God, people like me can do big things. Look at Hebrews 11 -- The Hall of Faith. Biblical...