Friday, November 25, 2011

"You Wanna Get Outa Here?"

I just got back from meeting my brother and his friend Troy at a nearby bar (The Post Time Lounge).  You know the character that's played by Ryan Gosling in the movie Crazy Stupid Love?  Well, my brother is Jacob Palmer in real life, only more manly.  No joke, it's almost amazing to watch really.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Book Review - 90 Minutes in Heaven, by Don Piper

I got this book as a 40th birthday present from Jeff S., a good friend of mine from church.  I was already backlogged in the reading department (including Agape Leadership, below), so it took me a while to get to it.  In the meantime though, Amanda tore through it pretty fast and really liked it.  So I was even more excited to be able to finally get to it.  And it did not disappoint me.

This book follows the true story of a pastor who gets in a horrific accident with a tractor-trailer, and subsequently dies.  Through another man's obedience to pray for him (when stirred to do so) he ended up returning to life.  The author takes great care to explain the details of his accident in order to provide as much credibility as possible to his claims of being clinically dead, and also his experience of heaven.  The rest of the story follows him through his long and painful physical recovery from the accident, and the process of figuring out what to do with the experiences he encountered and in finding purpose behind them.

Admittedly, since I'm a Christian, I did not truly approach it skeptically.  I already believe in Heaven, and the way Mr. Piper describes what he encountered does not conflict with what I have read in the Bible and/or what I believe.  But as with other books (such as "This Present Darkness"), even though I already held these beliefs, reading about them in this manner gives me an entirely different perspective to them.  Having a mental image of what it will be like to experience Heaven for myself changes the way I visualize the big picture of life and encourages me to make decisions that could have a positive affect for myself and others on that fateful (and joyful) day that I get to meet my maker.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Exercise Viagra Crack

I need exercise like Hugh Heffner needs Viagra.  Especially when life is frustrating, depressing, annoying, and/or difficult, which is pretty much every damned day.  The endorphins that it provides lifts my spirits.  The increased blood flow nourishes my brain.  Even the skin on my face feels awake and alive.  It helps me to think and yes, it also increases my libido (making the metaphor all the better).

I need exercise like a junkie needs a crack pipe.  Without a regular dose of it (2-4 times/week?), I slowly slide toward melancholy at best, depression at worst.  Until I eventually become like a spoiled drama queen with PMS. 

I hate that this is the case though.  And I hate the fact that although I know that this is the case, I still don't make doing it as much of a priority as I should.  And I also hate the fact that I rely too much on Amanda to work out with me.  But if she isn't able to, or if our schedules don't sync up (together, with the kids' nap times, etc), then I partially blame her for my frustration and the encroaching bad mood.  This then only compounds the negative effects though, because now I'm not just in a pissy mood, but I'm emotionally taking it out on her (if even only to a small extent).  This then adds friction to our relationship, which puts both of us in a worse mood.

So what is the solution?  The only one that I can think of is to set a designated time (4:30pm seems to work well while I'm unemployed), make it a priority, and just do it whether Amanda can join me or not.

And I'm not talking about an hour or two of a high intensity, gut busting, sweat pouring workout (although those are especially nice).  I'm just talking about at least 15-30 minutes of getting my heart rate up and my body moving.  Taking this little daily dose will improve my productivity level, my mood, our marriage, and pretty much every aspect of my life.
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