Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Race Packets, Siding and Dentists

Today was our annual trip to the dentist. I know, you really are supposed to go semi-annually. But really, who has the time or money for that? We are now a family with clean teeth. Only one member of the family has cavities. That would not be the husband-who like hardly ever brushes (okay, maybe that's an exaggeration) and NEVER flosses. Nor would it be any of the three kids. They must have inherited their dad's teeth. That will pay off over the years. No, the person with 2 (!!) cavities is me! Can you believe it? I brush at least once or twice a day, and frequently floss. And I have 2 cavities. You have got to be kidding me! Its just not fair! So, sometime after the first of the year, I get to go get those horrible mouth shots, and get the cavities filled. I must have inherited MY mom's teeth. Bummer.
It is a sunny, chilly day here in MI. My house is as decorated as its going to get. Now the bathrooms and floors need scrubbed. But that can always happen after blogging. After all, I am sitting at the table, supervising Ethan's schoolwork. Brian is on scaffolding outside the window. He is finally working on the siding again. I think my original guesstimate of it being finished in February of 2012 wasn't that far off. Hopefully that will hold true. He is thinking a new front porch, so we might be able to stretch this project out to February of 2013. Why February? It is his slowest month for work, so he always does projects then.=) And why has he been spurred on to get more siding done? No, I didn't nag him. The dentist, who's mother lives near us, asked if the siding was done yet. I guess that was motivating.
Brian working hard. 

the completed two sides of our house. SW corner.

A work in progress. He did from the top of the
bottom windows and up since yesterday.

The front. When giving directions to our house, I can say,
its the insulation covered one. 
In other news...we are studying Hebrews this month at BSF. And so this morning I had to do homiletics on chapters 11-13. And what I came up with as I did them, was that those three chapters are like a race packet. If you have ever been in a race, you know you have to pick up your race packet before you run. It usually contains a t-shirt, some granola bars, your number and timing chip, and the map of your course. Everything you need to run your race. Except for the training mileage. Well, obviously, Hebrews 12:1-3 talks about running our race with endurance, looking to Jesus-the forerunner and victor. He endured, and we need to endure. Keep on keeping on. So it is easy to see the race correlation there. But what about the other two chapters? Chapter 11 talks about the "great cloud of witnesses." They are our examples of faith. They have also run this race. And they got a good report. They are waiting to receive the fulfillment of their promises. They are waiting for us to finish our race. They are like the people at the finish line who are done and are cheering on everyone else as they come through. After the encouragement to run with patience or endurance, you have a nice chunk about discipline in chapter 12. Verse 11 talks about fruit being produced in those exercised by this discipline from God the Father. And, doesn't that correlate with race training-get rid of the extra weight, and disciplining your body so that when the race comes, it is conditioned to do what you want. The payoff. The fruit. And sometimes you have a coach who makes you do what you don't want to. Who helps in the discipline. Makes you run harder, takes away the fatty food, gets you out of bed, corrects bad habits. Finally, chapter 13 is full of more instructions about how we need to run our race. Relationship stuff-with people, leaders, and Jesus Christ. This reminds me of the maps, parking instructions, and list of FAQs you receive for any race. All the info you need. The author of Hebrews gives instructions on love, hospitality, purity in marriage, contentment, obeying and praying for your leaders, and identifying with Christ. All things necessary for running our race. Isn't that awesome?  

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. Hebrews 12:1-3

Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,
Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Hebrews 13:20-21

See you at the finish!