Category Archives: Discipline

focuses on the spiritual disciplines

Words from A. W. Tozer that are as timely as when he penned them <3

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It has been a full week here and I am once again rushing about to get things done so I hopefully can run errands and get to work on time! Sigh! Always so much to do and so little time. 

As I went through this week, one of my morning devotional readings spoke so strongly into what 2020 has brought out in our world. Yet it was written many, many years ago by A. W. Tozer. 

“The moral shock suffered by us through our mighty break with the high will of heaven has left us all with a permanent trauma affecting every part of our nature. There is a disease both in ourselves and in our environment.” 

A. W. Tozer November 16, in Faith that Matters; Harper One, 2011 excerpt taken from Tozer’s “Knowledge” pg. 103

Hello. 

This year of the pandemic/the voicing of masses of people who feel they have not been heard/political shenanigans/global crisis/violent storms, fires and disasters of nature…all of these have brought to the surface what we are made of as a nation and , oh my, have mercy. We have seen what we are and what we are capable of within our own hearts and out in the world. 

To name a few things we have seen a sharp rise in rebellion of all kinds (from burning cities to refusing to follow government restrictions for health), mean spirited confrontations from the head of our political parties down to our personal social media feeds with friends and acquaintances, confusion of all manner in regarding what is fact and what is spin, a complete upturning of the economy where we are closing businesses and then manufacturing funny money to help them out, shortages because of people hoarding products we all need, anxiety, depression, abuse, addiction, pornography and racial tension are astronomical, suicide is on the rise along with anger and rage at increasingly alarming measures. 

You get it. You live in it just like I do. 

You have probably felt it, too. You, like me, have watched the college football game with students clustered in the stands while you held your child who was mourning his little youth basketball season canceled. 

We shake our heads as one business after another is on the brink of going out of business and we spread wide our hands and wonder how children are going to be educated and how much more we can stretch our already stretched out teachers, nurses and hearts. 

And yet so many refuse to acknowledge God. 

We blame everyone but our own sinful and rebellious nature as humans. Flawed humans living amongst other flawed humans looking for the ones we could weed out so that everything would go the way it’s supposed to. 

And this is on all sides. No matter where you stand on any issue, the ones who don’t agree with and support you are the wrong ones and should be silenced at best and possibly eliminated at worst. 

We continue to cling to the idea that this leader or that plan of health care or some magic bullet will bring peace and comfort and prosperity for all. 

Tozer offers these words:

Until we have seen ourselves as God sees us, we are not likely to be much disturbed over conditions around us as long as they don’t get so far out of hand as to threaten our comfortable way of life. We have learned to live with unholiness and have come to look upon it as the natural and expected thing.”  

A. W. Tozer November 16, in Faith that Matters; Harper One, 2011 excerpt taken from Tozer’s “Knowledge” pg. 103

Wow. 

Perhaps we might look at the ways our “comfortable way of life” has been disrupted in 2020 and begin to ask God, as Christians, ask God to help us see ourselves and our choices and our sin the way He sees it. 

And then repent and ask Him to remind us what holiness looks like and how we can move toward that in what’s left of 2020 and beyond <3 

Bless you. 

You are worth the price of God’s only Son, the gift of salvation has been given to you. Rejoice in this and seek to be holy as He is holy <3 

You are loved.

<3

If this resonates with you, here are some additional resources:

This series but particularly Jonathan’s sermon from this past Sunday. https://www.firstdecatur.org/messages/overflow/

Romans 12:1 & 2

Isaiah 6

Psalm 51

That should give you a start <3

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So long October…hello November <3

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Welp, here we are. 

November. 

Let me just tell you where I am at this morning as we stand on the cusp of a new month. I am embracing my Enneagram 4 to the full limits of all the emotions. That’s where I am.

First of all, our state is back to mandated restrictions on numbers of gatherings and closing down inside dining at all restaurants and bars. Oh…except for casinos. 

No comment. 

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Second, in the last week I have had numerous people tell me how happy they will be after Tuesday when all this election stuff is over. To which I cock my head to one side and want desperately to ask what alternative reality they are living in. 

According to what I have gleaned from news reports there will be weeks of counting votes and I am sure analysis that will make the past few weeks seem like a walk in the park. Whoever wins, only half the country will be happy and the other half will most likely not be nice about it. And I mean…whatever side wins…the response will be uncomfortable at best.

We have to come to terms with the fact that we are deeply divided and neither side seems to care what people who disagree with them think or feel. People are hurting and confused and conflicted and at odds. This is a difficult time in our nation and it is not getting any less volatile. Respect for differing opinions is at an all-time low. It is toxic. Political discussion ended. I will not be revisiting that topic this month <3

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Third, as Joel will say as he complies and slips his mask on over his sweet little freckled nose and one-tooth-missing smile: “I hate Covid.”

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Fourth, I have seen several posts of people’s Christmas trees up and the ads are now filled with Christmas and I am one of those in the camp of waiting until we have Thanksgiving and trying to enjoy November all on its own merit.

I say to each his/her own on this one but I always begin to feel pressured so taking several deep breaths and soldiering on with how we do November here at the Reimer house. 

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So there you have me this morning. Just a lot of thoughts and feelings swirling around while I try to settle my brain down and do the regular Monday things that need attention. 

But not just any Monday, mind you…we have to check in with what October brought in the way of my naive 2020 New Year plan from January. Which seems like such a joke now but hey…let’s hang in there for two more attempts:

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Kaloupek Counseling LLC

So this month, the new habit I tried was running. 

I’m sorry, I should have waited for you to swallow your coffee before I put that out there. I will give you a minute to wipe off your screen…

Yes, me – running. 

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If you know me, I have never desired to run. I am the kid who always got a stitch in her side playing Red Rover, Red Rover. I have run a couple of 5K’s for a good cause but it never was something I wanted to make a habit.

But this Covid comfort eating has added pounds on me that are making me very sad and unhappy with myself. 

We walk miles but I decided I needed to add something that would be more cardio inducing…whatever runner people call it…make me move faster and up my metabolism. 

I researched “Running at age 60” in hopes the AMA and CDC and Mayo Clinic would all discourage it, but no. 

Turns out it is highly recommended to help fight aging and the diseases associated with it. 

Dang. 

I was delighted to learn that if you are starting this at age 60, you should start slowly. So I determined in my heart to run three times a week for twenty minutes. 

I set a course that takes that amount of time and on those three days I motivate myself by gritting my teeth and reminding myself out loud several times that I can do anything for twenty minutes.

I basically smack talk myself out the door and I run. 

I have not yet experienced the fabled “runner’s high” but I get my sorry self around the course.

The first five to eight minutes are the absolute worst, along with the last five and the 10 to 12 in between and I want to quit so badly and hold my side and deep breathe, but I keep pounding along. 

One day I was feeling particularly nerdy as I sauntered along in what I knew in my heart were my jammie pants even though they technically were sold as leggings. My chest was heaving in the cold and my nose kept running faster than my legs. 

I was approaching a potential short cut to my run and was considering taking it since a walker was coming down the sidewalk in the next block.

I thought I would just prevent any contact, you know, being social distanced and all would be wise when this walker stepped generously into the grass of the yard across from me and started smiling and giving me two thumbs up. 

He was mouthing encouragement and nodding his head and grinning so much that I just felt like I had not choice but to continue on the longer route. 

I am still smiling thinking of this stranger who had no idea how much I wanted to quit just standing there cheering me on. 

You all..seriously… let’s do that. 

Let’s be the guy who steps aside and be encouragers. 

In these times where more often people are stepping away from us in fear of contact, we can add some kind of thumb’s up, smile, word…whatever.

It’s risky.

It’s bold.

Let’s be that <3

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Looking back for the fun of it <3

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I thought it might be fun to share the very first post in case you all had better things to do than scroll back through 1,691 posts.

Gasp.

I can’t believe how many that is.

I am not bragging, I am seriously laughing at the thought of the sheer number. And that’s just the ones I published. Apparently there are twelve drafts lurking out there somewhere to be revisited some day.

So for a little stroll down memory lane, here is my first one published. I didn’t even know how to insert pictures back then, but they have become as much a part of my journal as the words…so here we go…

Post #1 from October 12, 2013

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I hope your day is going well. Mine started a little earlier than planned. Apparently, the coffee clock is set ahead an hour and the call of caffeine beat out my alarm.

The extra time is great because it allowed me no excuses to head to the Y. Turns out the place is pretty empty at this hour. This works for me as I am a little intimidated by the whole workout thing.

By the time I had made my way through the machines and headed to the free weights part, the late crowd was filtering in. As I pumped iron, my core pulled in and my lip curling in agony with each repetition, I took in the scene around me thanks to the big old mirror we have to face.

To my right was a guy with 40 pounds in each hand, doing some kind of bicep thing with the same amount of ease that I flick my curling iron. He had a spider tattoo on his arm that was roughly the size of my upper torso.

Behind me and to my left was a young man that I think should have been at school today. He couldn’t have been more than 15. He was doing push ups. A lot of them. And with his legs not only straight out but one crossed over the other. Seriously.

I considered asking Spider Man to help me carry my 5 pound weights back over to the rack and calling it quits, when another gym rat rolled by in her wheelchair. Her weights were resting on her one and only leg as she maneuvered into an empty spot next to me. As she began her exercises, I put on my big girl pants and finished my work out.

We are all at different levels based on our abilities and limitations, and the amount of time we have devoted to the discipline of exercise. As I walked to the car, I remembered that a year ago I was sitting on the couch recovering from a surgery, which worked well since I was unable to walk on a foot plagued by plantar fasciitis. Progress.

It’s like that in our faith walk as well. We have a mixture of abilities and disabilities, a life that has dealt us some great things and some tough things. But with discipline and diligence, we apply the tools of training – reading and study of the Word, prayer, worship, fellowship, obedience – and we grow and prosper in the Spirit. We are all at different places with varied levels of progress. But we are working toward the common goal of bearing the image of Christ.

 I pray today you are encouraged by those around you who are seeking to grow in the Lord; not comparing yourself to others. Sense the joy of growing in God’s timing as you rejoice in what He has done in you and look forward with great expectation to what lies ahead. Keep at it and don’t grow weary! Stretch and strengthen and grow!

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