2016: Page 142

Page 142 has been a relaxing day and good practice for an upcoming vacation.  After working late last night, I was able to sleep in a little this morning.  It was good to simply enjoy a cup of coffee while going through email messages and social media posts.  It is my father-in-law’s birthday, so as morning began to slip away I fired up the pellet grill to get lunch started.  I began by making a shallow pan out of aluminum foil and cooking bacon on the grill.  When the bacon was nearly cooked, I put hamburger patties on the foil to cook in the bacon grease and  then eventually added fresh mushrooms to the grill to end up with some mushroom bacon cheeseburgers for lunch.  I still use my gas grill occasionally, but there isn’t much that compares to the flavor of food cooked on my wood pellet grill.  At lunch we talked about our upcoming vacation and the gas grills that are on-site, and get used nearly every day, where we stay.  

Since I had already grilled, I decided the bright warm sunshine would make the afternoon a good practice for our beach vacation so we packed the beach chairs and kites and headed up to the Indiana Dunes State Park via Bass Pro Shops.  I was looking for some new hiking shoes but the ones they had on sale didn’t fit my feet comfortably and the ones not on sale didn’t fit my wallet comfortably. 🙂  Although we didn’t get anything, we typically make a stop or two at the outlet malls while on vacation so this stop fit right in with the vacation practice theme of the day.  We left there and headed to the dunes where the warm 72 degree temperature that we left home in had dropped to a sunny 57 degrees along the lake.  We managed to find a protected area to set up the beach chairs and I worked at getting my kites in the air while MJ and Susan enjoyed the beautiful sunshine.  I managed to get the two larger kites that I had with me up in the air but the small one couldn’t catch enough wind under it to make it work.

In keeping with the vacation practice theme, we stopped by the outlet mall in Michigan City after we left the dunes and one of our first orders of business there was to get ice cream.  We also picked up a few things for our actual vacation then headed down to the lakefront to take some more pictures.  The real vacation will include some time at the pool so our evening waterfront visit would coincide with the sunset.  With over three hours until sunset, we had to settle for a few “daytime” photos before heading home.

As I thought about the day and the fun attempt to practice something that seems silly to even talk about practicing, I thought about the ultimate permanent “vacation destination” and how our life on earth can become a “practice” for the eternity we’ll spend with God.  I love vacations and for me, the family vacations my parents took me on were great practice for the family vacations I enjoy today.  Whether it was the picnic under the tablecloth covered picnic table because it had begun to rain or climbing the terrifying stairs out of the depths of Mammoth Cave, I learned to make the best of the time we have together and to overcome whatever fears and obstacles try to keep us from enjoying the day.  As a part of the family of God, we ought to have those same experiences that helps us to enjoy life together and give God praise in all circumstances.  Our life becomes a practice of worshiping Him at all times.  Our fellowship with one another and our worship of God helps us to overcome the fears and obstacles that try to keep us from experiencing true joy in Christ.  When we practice living in Christ and Him living in us every day, we find our days becoming more and more like the ones we will have throughout eternity as we worship God forever.

I pray that you and I would spend time contemplating and eternity with Christ.  I pray that we would spend each day worshiping God as we practice for an eternity of doing so.  I pray that our lives would be an encouragement to others as they figure out the daily walk that God is calling them to.


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