Category Archives: Stuff I like a lot

Guest Post: Embracing The Race

I’d like to introduce you to Lisa Preuett. When I met her a couple of years ago at a writer’s conference, we discovered we had running in common as well as writing! She had a devotional in the works at the time, and the early drafts she shared totally resonated with my runner’s heart. If you know me, you know I’ve always been moved by the parallels between running and my relationship with Jesus. Well, the devotional that was “in the works” is now a reality. Lisa is guest posting here today, and whether you’re a runner or not, her new book, Embracing The Race: 40 Devotions for the Runner’s Soul, is sure to speak to your soul too.

“What’s your pace?”

This is a common question you’ll hear frequently among runners. It’s also a number you must sometimes enter on race registration forms. It’s easy to obsess about exactly how long it takes one to cover the distance of a mile.

Early in my running journey, I quickly realized that everyone runs a different pace. Some bolt out like a flash of lightning, determined to win the race. Others fall into the “back of the pack” category, bringing up the rear. And in between these two extremes are a myriad of other paces.

Could I run at a faster pace at the start of a long race? Absolutely! But could I maintain that pace throughout the rest of the race? Not a chance. If I started out sprinting with all my might, I’d quickly drain myself of the energy I need to reach the finish line.

My determination is focused on finishing the race at my own unique pace, not trying to keep up with someone else.

Maybe you’re not a runner and can’t relate to the race environment. Perhaps you have no intentions of ever lacing up running shoes.

But runner or not, you are running a race.

In Hebrews 12:1-2, Paul depicts the Christian life as a race. He urges us to “run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus.”

The Christian life is a long distance race we are called to live one step at a time. There are obstacles. Hills to climb.  Sometimes we are running quickly at a smooth pace. Other times we hit the wall and feel like giving up before we reach the finish line.

Jesus started the race with us and is also waiting at the finish line.  No medal or cash prize could ever come close to the eternal joy we will experience when we see Him face to face.

There are so many powerful parallels between running and our faith journey with Jesus! They paint vivid pictures of what we encounter in this race called life.

Embracing The Race: 40 Devotions for the Runner’s Soul, will awaken your mind to these parallels. You’ll be equipped with scripture, encouraged to persevere and inspired with determination. You’ll be challenged to plunge deeper in your walk with God!My book, Embracing The Race: 40 Devotions for the Runner’s Soul, will awaken your mind to these parallels. You’ll be equipped with scripture, encouraged to persevere and inspired with determination. You’ll be challenged to plunge deeper in your walk with God!

Each day’s reading will give you a peek into the runner’s world, a fresh Biblical insight, practical life application, soul-searching reflections and a heart-felt prayer.

Kyle Idleman, best-selling author of Not a Fan says this about the book:

Honest and fun to read, you’ll find encouragement and challenge that come from Bible passages and through the language of a runner. If you’re a runner, you’ll love this book. If you’re not a runner, there is plenty here for you, too.”

Embracing The Race releases on November 14th and is available here on Amazon in paperback and Kindle version.

Lisa Preuett is a follower of Jesus, wife and mom of two. An avid runner, she’s completed multiple races from 5K to full marathon. Actively involved in women’s ministry, she thrives on encouraging others in their faith. She resides in Taylorsville, KY. You can connect with her at www.reststopforthesoul.comLisa Preuett is a follower of Jesus, wife and mom of two. An avid runner, she’s completed multiple races from 5K to full marathon. Actively involved in women’s ministry, she thrives on encouraging others in their faith. She resides in Taylorsville, KY. You can connect with her at www.reststopforthesoul.com

Lent for the rest of us: 2016 (Free printable reading plan!)

Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, which is on February 10 this year, and leads us to Easter on March 27. Are you familiar with Lent?

I used to get super stressed about this season. Lent. This 40-day journey leading up to Easter… a time to prepare our hearts for Jesus… all He is and all He’s done. (No pressure, right!?)

There are many ways to engage in the Lenten season – prayer, fasting, simplistic living – all with the aim of drawing closer to God. In the past, I leaned toward the Downward Spiral route into “how can I possibly prepare my heart (AND my children’s hearts!!!) to even REMOTELY grasp what Easter really means.” And, being a recovering perfectionist, I can still easily fall into the “All or Nothing” trap. (I can’t do it ALL, so I’ll do NOTHING.) (So healthy, I know.)

This is a simple, meaningful tradition to begin with your children for the season of Lent, leading up to Easter! Enjoy this free printable reading plan!But two years ago, I began a simple new tradition with my children for these weeks leading up to Easter: we read The Jesus Storybook Bible from the very beginning through the Resurrection story. One chapter a day, for each day of Lent.

(If you’re doing the math, don’t despair — the 40 days excludes Sundays — so yes, there are actually more than 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday.)

And you guys – reading this together has been so powerful. (Even if you don’t have children, please get a copy and read it anyway. I promise you’ll be glad you did. I get at least as much out of it as my kids.)

“But Lent and Easter are about JESUS. Why would you start all the way back at the BEGINNING of the Bible? Doesn’t Jesus show up much later?”

I’m so glad you asked!

Did you know that the entire Bible points to Jesus? All the way back to the beginning. As The Jesus Storybook Bible says: “Every story whispers His name.” Where better to start than the beginning?

To help you stay on track with which chapter you’re on, I’ve put together a new 2016 Lent Reading Plan. (And bonus – if you fold it in half lengthwise, it makes a great bookmark!) Click here or on the image below to download the FREE printable file!

Don’t have a copy of The Jesus Storybook Bible yet? You can click here to purchase a copy on Amazon. Order quick and you’ll have plenty of time to catch up on the reading! 🙂

What do you think of this idea? What does your family do to prepare for and celebrate Easter? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

This is a simple, meaningful tradition to begin with your children for the season of Lent, leading up to Easter! Enjoy this free printable reading plan!

Click to open free printable!

 

43 Songs: The Ultimate Running Playlist

While visiting my parents in Indiana, I thought I’d be able to keep up my training for an upcoming half marathon (I’m planning to NOT repeat this total FAIL). But, I’m currently stuck inside, watching the freezing rain outside, and am just not hard core enough today to get out there and run in that mess.

Whether you're in marathon training or just looking for a great workout mix, this Ultimate Running Playlist is sure to get you moving!Meanwhile, why not take this time to finally share my running playlist with you? I listened to this mix while training to qualify for the Boston Marathon. It’s pretty random – and no, I wouldn’t let my kids listen to some of these songs – but they all either make me happy or pump me up.

So, without further ado, The Ultimate Running Playlist:

1. Renegades– X Ambassadors
2. Fight Song – Rachel Platten
3. Love Runs Out – OneRepublic
4. Stitches – Shawn Mendes
5. Shots – Imagine Dragons
6. TiK ToK – Ke$ha
7. Rolling in the Deep – Adele
8. Raise Your Glass [Clean] – Pink
9. Photograph – Ed Sheeran
10. One Thing – One Direction
11. Lose Yourself [Clean] – Eminem
12. Drive By – Train
13. Counting Stars – OneRepublic
14. Good Feeling – Flo Rida
15. Black Widow [feat. Rita Ora] [Clean] – Iggy Azalea
16. Try – Pink
17. I Lived – OneRepublic
18. Maps – Maroon 5
19. Boom Clap – CharliXCX
20. You Make Me Brave – Bethel Music
21. Bang Bang – Ariana Grande & Jessie J & Nicki Minaj
22. Brave – Sara Bareilles
23. Greater – MercyMe
24. Titanium (Feat. Sia) – David Guetta
25. Team – Lorde
26. Dark Horse – Katy Perry
27. Grenade – Bruno Mars
28. There You Go – Pink
29. Roar – Katy Perry
30. Little Talks – Of Monsters and Men
31. We Found Love – Rihanna
32. Burn – Ellie Goulding
33. Radioactive – Imagine Dragons
34. Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) – Kelly Clarkson
35. Club Can’t Handle Me (feat. David Guetta) – Flo Rida
36. Feel Again – OneRepublic
37. Firework – Katy Perry
38. Cruise – Florida Georgia Line
39. The Lost Are Found – Hillsong Worship
40. Can’t Hold Us – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
41. Awake My Soul (with Lecrae) – Chris Tomlin
42. Part Of Me – Katy Perry
43. Geronimo – Sheppard

What’s on your favorite playlist? What should I add?