Tuesday, January 29, 2013

When it's Better to Adopt an Inaccurate Theology

I recently started a Bible study/prayer group at my job (like at my previous job too).

Last week, we talked about several different things, but one of the guys (a Catholic) stated that he thinks prayer is absolutely necessary to get things done.  To put it another way, he believes that the things you are praying about would not otherwise happen without your prayer.

While I am a firm believer in the power of prayer and the importance of it in many regards, I think it's a bit ridiculous to think that God cannot accomplish anything without our prayer.  Some obvious examples of this being incorrect are the stories in the Bible.  In the overwhelming majority of these stories, no prayer is mentioned at all.  It's just God taking action based on His own will.  My wife mentioned a great point too, that good things also still happen to atheists too (who obviously don't pray) - they get jobs, they find love, they stay healthy, etc.

However, upon further consideration of his approach, I thought that if we are to err in our perspective on prayer, it is FAR and BEYOND better to err on the side of over-praying.  In fact, if all Christians adopted that same attitude - that without prayer nothing will happen - then how much more praying would they/we be doing?  If anything, I think it's quite accurate to say that although the Bible says to "pray continually", very few people take the time to pray even on a daily basis.

So while I may disagree theologically with my co-worker, I am going to try to adopt and promote his philosophy anyway.  Shouldn't we all?

Friday, January 25, 2013

The "Ideal" Amount of Exercise

My co-worker Joe was recently talking about his high blood pressure.  I asked him whether he exercises, to which he jokingly replied "yeah, to and from my car".

He then mentioned that he read somewhere that walking 20 minutes a day is significantly beneficial for health, and that he has a friend who started doing this daily, and lost a significant amount of weight as a result.

I thought that it's interesting if doctors are recommending just 20 minutes a day of walking now.  Not too long ago I remember reading that 60 minutes a day of aerobic activity is ideal, then more recently reading a recommendation of 30 minutes a day.  For a while, I was utilizing the 15-minute workouts that Men's Health frequently posts on their website.  They also often promote a book called "Big Book of 15-Minute Workouts".  I'm guessing that doctors and trainers are realizing that the loftier the goal is, the less likely that people are going to be to meet it, especially lazy and obese Americans.

So what is the ideal and/or sufficient amount of exercise that we should strive to get then?  Is it 60, 30, or 15 minutes or aerobic?  What about strength/weights?  Or should you just walk for 20?  Obviously, more activity is better.  And a combination of strength & aerobic training is also ideal.  However, if you are having a hard time finding an exercise routine or it keeps stalling out, then instead of getting overwhelmed with high expectations and lofty goals, just start with the simple idea that the ideal amount of exercise to get is this: 

more than you are getting right now.  

That's it.  Just start with whatever you can possibly fit in to your schedule and make it happen.  Then do a little more.  Then perhaps a bit more.  But to start, just focus on doing more than you're currently doing.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

The Game of Hands (a Dream)

I had a weird dream last night (1/8/2013)

I was in a car with a friend (he was driving I think).  We pulled up to a fairly large cinder block building that we were planning on going into for some reason.  From inside the car we could see a few guys hanging out in front of the building, by the door.  My friend pointed out one of them and said "See that guy right there.  He's a royal dick."

I went inside (I don't think my friend did though).  I was hanging out there and the dick guy was giving me the eye.  No, not the "I'm gay" eye, but the one that is testing your will, seeing if you're a threat or not, and seeing if he can intimidate you to make you turn away.

Then someone suggested we play cards, so then we all sat down to play.  The dick guy was sitting across from me and was the dealer.  He said "I know a good game.  The game of hands."  In a second or two I realized that he was talking about fighting, especially since he was just holding the cards randomly (not like he was going to actually play with them).  I also knew that he was talking about fighting with me, since he was still giving me "the eye".

In a flash I began pondering options, including (a) punch him first and make it count, (b) play it cool and see what happens, (c) avoid a conflict at all costs, or ...?

I woke up undecided.
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