One Thing | Changes, Changes

 In Featured, One Thing, Uncategorized

By Jason Kramme

 

One thing I’m grateful for | Last summer my family moved from Bloomington to Burnsville. In fact, it will be one year on July 22 that we lined up a caravan of minivans plus a moving truck to bring our stuff south of the river. There is a lot to love about our new home, but what I love the most is that there is about an eighth-ish of an acre of woods behind it. There is scarcely a week that goes by that I’m not up there pulling buckthorn, cutting wood, and trying my hand at bushcraft (making stuff with logs n’stuff). It balances me out, un-plugs me from the world, and is an awesome spot for me to hang with my boys. I’m thankful for that.

One thing I’m learning | I’ve been on vacation the last couple of weeks and I’ve been reading some great books. The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson has taught me that while many people were building economic and social equity for much of the last century, many others were living through one of the single largest migrations in world history simply trying to find equality. The book 1776 by David McCoullough taught me that the simple story we tell ourselves about the revolutionary war is, like many things in history, much more rich and complicated once you peel back the layers.

One Devotional thought that is challenging me | I have two sons who will go back to school in some form or another after Labor Day. I’m assuming it is going to include in-person instruction which will effectively end our quarantine. I’ve got a lot of thoughts about that, but I’ll save those for another blog post. In the meantime, I want to reflect a bit on what quarantine has done to the way I engage with my faith.

I, like a lot of you, have an extremely tight and full schedule. Under normal circumstances, weeks and months pass by in a blur of backpacks and meetings. Until now, I don’t know if I’ve realized how much that has impacted how I engage with God devotionally. The short version is that my devotional life is primarily between my ears and in carefully portioned segments of time. Obviously, there is something that ‘works’ with that approach because I have always felt close to God.

The pandemic has changed the way my world works. There’s no school, no commute, no fast-food, no trips, no gym, no sports, no social gatherings, and the list goes on. In the midst of all of that: My cholesterol has gone down. I’ve lost weight. I’ve improved my VO2 Max. I sleep the amount you’re supposed to sleep. I’ve lost my eye twitch I’ve had since 2018. My skin is better. I’ve got curls for the first time since 2009. I haven’t been sick since February.

Of course, hindsight is 20-20 (haha see what I did there?) but, as I look back I can’t help but attribute all of these real, measurable, physical benefits to following all of the things God says about the way our bodies work during quarantine. I take time every day to breath when I exercise. I retreat to the woods when I feel overwhelmed. I share meals with the people I love. I consider the beauty of the earth in my garden. I take naps.

For so many of us our faith is a set of doctrines we rehearse in the quiet of our study. Not all the time, but often, it leaves us wishing our faith made more of a difference in how we feel. A real physical difference. I feel like I’m experiencing that right now, and as I countdown the days until ‘normal’ begins again, I’ve got some choices to make. I don’t want to sacrifice this connection with God that I’ve gained in this wilderness season. I’ll share some of what I’m thinking I’ll change on the video version of this blog on Wednesday at noon!

What are you grateful for? What are you learning? What’s challenging or forming you spiritually?

Join me midweek for a deeper dive into this on Facebook or YouTube

 

Jason Kramme is the Director of Family Ministry

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