Friday, October 30, 2020

Five Things on Friday

Here are five things which are on my mind this week:

1) One of my favorite programs this time of year is the Curious George Halloween Boo-fest, a fun cartoon movie for Halloween centered upon that lovable little monkey, George. I know for many folks Charlie Brown's Great Pumpkin will always reign supreme. But one of my great joys these days is sitting on the couch with Abram (3) and Trinity (6) and watching this show together during the Halloween season. 

2) This week, I have reworked my daily schedule to reflect a greater emphasis on prayer, study, and pastoral care. I immediately sense how satisfied I am with this schedule change and its priorities. So I ask you, dear reader, do you track how you keep time each day and what activities you devote time to?

3) Looking for a way to make it through 2020 and the holidays without gaining weight? For the past 16 months, I have been following the carnivore diet lifestyle and have shed 80 pounds. Not only have I lost weight, but I have been sleeping better and experiencing greater mental health in terms of less stress. Why? Mostly because of the decrease of insulin spiking by cutting out carbs and sugar. If you're looking for a good way to get healthier, let me recommend that you check out the carnivore diet.

4) This week, I completed one of the best books I've read on how to deal with criticism in the pastorate, Pastors and Their Critics by Joel Beeke and Nick Thompson. Highly recommended!

5) This year, I am training as a hospital chaplain to improve my church ministry and commitment to pastoral care. One of the things I have encountered is the need to deal with the emotional trauma one experiences as a caregiver in hospital settings. Last week, I had a particularly difficult death in the emergency room. The effects of my caregiving at this death stayed with me for several days, which led me to the question: "how do I restore myself after a particularly challenging instance of spiritual care giving?" My answer this week has been to pick up a rock at the hospital, remember the name of the deceased and honor their memory by placing it in a beautiful place somewhere outside of the hospital. I take the rock, remember the death and the trauma associated with, say a prayer for their soul, and then place it ceremonially at a place of my choosing. It is my way of "letting go" of the pain associated with the memory and I am finding it to be a beautiful and helpful practice.