Thursday, February 26, 2015

A great reminder

The past week has seen me catch a nasty cold that has left me feeling the worst I have felt in years. I pride myself in taking care of my body and rarely getting sick. But, when I do get sick, it comes with a fury. This cold knocked me off my feet and disrupted my entire flow and routine. On Monday I had to leave work early due to my inability to stand up straight – and I promptly came home and slept for close to eighteen hours. My body needed the rest, but unfortunately that alone was not able to completely kill off the sickness. A few days later and I am still struggling to get back on my feet and feel as if I am back to normal.
There have been all sorts of frustration and agitation this week in getting sick. Why is it that you never seem to get sick at a good time? It always seems to hit at an inopportune time. As a result, I have felt behind all week, and with coaching track starting next week, I am feeling a bit stressed before the season even starts.

I have certainly found myself complaining quite a bit this week. I have thrown quite the extensive pity party, even if I am the only invitee. Yet, yesterday morning in my quiet time I sat down and began to pray through my day. As I did I found myself humbly and honestly before the Lord praying, “Lord, I need your strength and your energy today. There is no way I can get through the day on my strength alone. I need your strength today.” My current battle with the flu has brought about a grave realization in that I commonly rely on my own strength. I needed to be reminded of where my strength comes from and who I should rely on for the strength to carry out each day’s tasks. Because, if Tommy’s strength is the only one contributing to this week’s tasks…nothing of any value is going to be accomplished. An annoying flu to battle through – but a great reminder.

Thursday, February 12, 2015


There is generally very little thought that goes into what shirt I will wear when I head out for a run. I basically ask myself two questions, Is it going to keep me warm enough? Is it clean? The first needs to be a yes, the second can go either way. However recently I have found myself purposefully selecting shirts I received from a previous marathon for one simple reason, when I run I can see my reflection.
Due to sub-par temperatures and conditions (translation: I’m turning into a wimp) the majority of my runs recently have been on a treadmill. I quickly found it was annoying to turn on the TV in front of the treadmill, so I always turn it off. After doing this, I noticed I could see my reflection in the TV screen – however, it is basically only my chest I can see. With that in mind recently I have chosen shirts from previous marathons so I can view the reflection of my shirt and see the marathon logo. As I am running I will see my reflection and it offers moments of deep thought.
I think about the past. How did I run during the marathon on my shirt, and how am I currently running compared to that marathon? I look at my shirt and think about the present, how am I doing in my training right now? I think about the future, how will my current day’s training preparing me for my next race and the next shirt I will get? My reflection also gives me a little bit of competition as I sit there and ask, “Am I proud of the way I am running?” 
Being able to see my reflection while running has also provided me with a question to answer once I am off the treadmill, “Am I proud of the way I am living my life?” 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Random Wednesday

The truth is I don't know exactly when it started or how it started, but every Wednesday in one of my classes I show the students a random video. I like to introduce the video by saying, "This video has absolutely nothing to do with what we are learning about, but it will make you think." Each time I show such a video, I find videos that are thought provoking and quickly generate discussion. I have found ones that are purposefully addressing a controversial topic to get the kids talking. I found a video that makes them think about the power their words have. I have thoroughly enjoyed this exercise because it gets the kids thinking and talking. Some of our longest and best class discussions have actually originated from these videos.

Yesterday I showed the video in the link below, and everyone was pretty intrigued by the short clip. Following the video we talked about how to get to know someone, how we can better understand what people are going through. It was really fascinating to take a group of young minds which are almost constantly thinking about three things, "Me myself and I" and force them to think about what those around them may be going through, and how it could/should change the way we interact with them.
Take a look at the video, I hope you too will take a second thought to how you treat those around you.
Click for the video