“I came so they (all of us) can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of…” – Jesus, John 10:10
So I have to confess that my last post (Every Car We Have Ever Owned) was not exactly devotional in content. But it absolutely was fun, and I firmly believe that fun is as much a part of the experience of “living faith out loud” as those more serious moments.
God would not have created us with the capacity to get a kick out of life if it was not part of the divine order to indulge our sense of whimsy and fun. When Jesus talked about the “abundant life” I have an inkling he was referencing recreation, laughter, hikes in the mountains, playing on the beach, and dinner parties with our friends just as much as singing praise songs in church, devoting ourselves to prayer, and serving others in the name of Jesus.
Abundant life can be all of these things; but the key is mind, body, soul, and spirit. I am convinced that my experiences of fun are more rich and enjoyable when I am framing them in prayer, enriching my spirit through corporate worship, and committed to mission and service.
Me and my Shadow:
One of my joys is walking Max Retriever. We try to get out for at least three decent hikes every day plus the occasional quick foray down the street and back.
Yesterday, walking south along Joyner Court, I caught this glimpse of Max and me on the sidewalk.
It occurred to me that our perception of reality is always distorted because of where we are looking from, where the light is, and the lens we use to see through. Even then more often than not what we see is only two dimensional and absolutely lacking in depth.
Or, as in this case, simply a projection of myself.
If I am to know anything at all I must pay attention to what other people see; I must listen to them and try to understand. Only then will the richness of this world begin to give shade and color and dimension to my view, offering more substance and credibility to my interpretation.
Chatting with the dog:
When we got back home Rebekah was on her way downstairs. Max met her at the bottom, and it was as if he wanted to tell her all about his adventures.
So they chatted a while.
I am convinced that Max coming into our lives was not accidental but providential. God knew that this particular season of life in and around Maul-Hall could well benefit from a Golden Retriever; not just any Golden but a Max.
There is a sense where everything is a gift, and a posture of saying “thank you” goes a long way. Because sometimes we do not – cannot – receive something as a gift until we first give thanks.
Something to think about; something that absolutely will make a positive difference in our life, and our experience of each moment as the abundance God intends.
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.