Saturday, March 28, 2009

Room at the Inn

Our church has a ministry called Room at the Inn. This ministry goes to the Nasvhille Rescue Mission picks up 8 to 10 people and brings them back to the church. They get there about 6:30, wash up, and then have dinner. After dinner there is a devotional time and then they have some free time. There is also cards to write to family or friends and the can use the phone if they want. They can play games, watch TV, or just hang out and talk. The next morning some people at the church make breakfast and provide them with a lunch to take with them. There is also a clothes closet where they can get some things they need.

This past Monday our Sunday school class helped with this ministry. It was such an awesome thing to see so many people come out and volunteer their time during the week. We have a great group of people in our class. Terri made meatloaf and Sharon made banana pudding that were awesome. We also had mac and cheese, green beans, and creamed corn. There was tea, lemonade, and coffee. I think our class did a great job. A few of us brought our kids and one of the people said they had never seen kids there and it felt like a family picnic. I am thankful for a church that cares about people and a class that does as well. Thanks guys for doing such a good job.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Couple of Firsts

This week had 2 "firsts." One was good and one was not so good.

I have posted a few times about running and my past and present feelings on it. Well, yesterday I had a first and a milestone that I didn't think I would ever make it to. I ran 10 miles for my long run in preparation for the Music City Half Marathon. Thankfully I didn't have any knee pain that I wouldn't put in the category of "it hurts because I ran for an hour and a half." Not only did I make it 10 miles, I ran it at the pace that is my goal for the race. Hopefully, with 5 weeks left before the race I can get 3 more 10+ mile runs in before the race.

The second first is totally unimpressive. As I posted about a few days ago, I have been filling out a Final Four bracket for several years. This is the first year, that I can remember, that I had a team in the Final Four get beat in the first round. I thought, for whatever reason, that West Virginia was going to go on a run and make it. My first thought was Louisville, but I changed it and now I will pay for it. Oh well, it will still be fun to keep up with it and hope that I beat Allison for house bragging rights.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

March Madness

I can't remember how many years I have filled out a bracket for the Final Four. There have been years where I got in a pool that cost money, but for the most part I participate in groups that are just for the bragging rights. Several years ago Allison said, "I should get in the group with you because I beat you every year." Well, I wouldn't say she beats me every year, but she definitely has had her share of wins over me. This year we are both in two different groups. It is too early to tell, but I definitely think I have a good chance at coming out on top. Do you fill out a bracket for the tournament?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I Love the Spring

Here are a few reasons why I love spring...

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Lesson in Accountability

I learned a great lesson in accountability yesterday. As I talked a few days ago, I had a 9 mile run planned for Saturday morning. As I checked the weather forecast throughout the day Friday, what I was seeing was not that promising. The first forecast I saw was 70% chance of rain and 35 degrees at 7:30 (the time we were planning on starting). As the day and night went on, the chance of rain moved up to 80%, but the temperature was moved up to 42 degrees from 7:00 to 9:00. I was convinced there was no way we were going to attempt the run.

When I got up yesterday morning it was raining. It wasn't pouring, but it was definitely raining. I sent a text to my friend that I was running with asking if he was planning to run and he said he was. Our plan was to run on the greenway in Murfreesboro and I knew that he had either left already or was about to. As I read the text I was tempted to send him another one that said I was going to skip the run today and do it Sunday when the weather was supposed to be considerably better. Then I think God spoke to me and told me that I needed to be accountable to my friend since I told him yesterday I would run unless it was pouring rain.

I think accountability is not something that we, as Americans, do very well. When divorce rate is as high as it is and abortions are readily available, we are not being held accountable for our actions. I am fortunate that I have someone that I have that holds me accountable. He may not know it, but he definitely does. Another way that I am held accountable is through Twitter. I don't have a lot of followers on Twitter, but I have several that I know pay attention the my Tweets. Because of this, I definitely feel accountable to them. One example is my exercise routine. One person that follows me is someone who is very conscientious of fitness. There has been more than one time that I have Tweeted that I was considering not going to the gym and he sent me a message telling me to do otherwise. I am very thankful for him being there to make me accountable.

In what ways are you held accountable?

Prayer is Needed

In an earlier post I mentioned that our friends had the opportunity to adopt the biological sister of a their daughter. You can go here to read the latest update about this wonderful family and please be in prayer for them.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Music City Marathon

As many of you know and as I talked about here, I used to hate running. I grew up thinking that running was just something you did as punishment. Over the past several years I have really grown to enjoy it. I started running 5k races about five years ago and I still really enjoy running them. Well, this coming April I am going to attempt my first half marathon. I am going to do the one here in Nashville, which is on April 25. I have started training for two others in the past, the Country Music Half last April and the Middle Half in Murfreesboro last October. Both times, however, when I got to about 6 miles I felt a really sharp pain in one or both of my knees. Not really surprised by this, each time I felt the bad pain I just shut down my training. Starting about 2 months ago I began moving up my long runs little by little. By doing it this way, I have felt very little pain and have been able to keep a pace that I have set as a goal for the race. Tomorrow I am running 9 miles and if I am able to keep up my expected pace and my knees do not have a lot of pain, I am going to sign up for the Music City Half Marathon. Hopefully the next time I write about this I will be talking about how my training is going in hopes of running the race in less than 2 months. Is anyone else planning to run the Music City Half Marathon?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Run 4 Kids

The past two years Allison and I have run in the Tennessee Baptist Children’s Home Run4Kids. Last year Cooper participated in the 100 yard dash kids run. He seemed to have fun and even got a ribbon for his participation. I don’t think he is quite ready for the 1 mile run, but he and I will definitely be in training soon for his second go around in the 100 yard dash.

This year I was asked to serve on the race committee for the home. This is a great fundraiser for the home. Because of the economy, I am sure giving is down for the home so this race will be even more important. I am not sure if I will be able to actually run, but I am going to do my best to get people involved and raise money for a great cause.

This race is great for everyone in the family. Not only is there a 5k, but there is also a one mile run for the bigger kids, a 100 yard dash for the little kids, lots of good food, and tons of activities for kids. Last year there was a bouncing castle, a face painter, and a live band. Another fun thing about this race is the church competition. On the registration form you indicate the church you go to. There is a new twist to this year’s church competition—sponsorship. Each person running will have the option of getting donations from others as “sponsors” for the race. Then the church with the most people participating and money collected by their participants will win.

Anyone interested in running? If so, the race is May 30. I do not think the website ready for current year registration, but as soon as it is I will let you know.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Heading to Huntsville

During the Spring each or our stores takes their annual physical inventory. Each store has to have someone that does not work in the store come and observe the inventory count. This is a requirement by our external auditors. I work in Retail Financial Services and we offer to help with the observation process. Last year I went to Knoxville and observed one of our two stores there and got to visit with some friends while I was there. This year I was given a list of stores to choose from and neither Knoxville nor Lexington, the two places we have lived, was available. I chose Huntsville for a couple of reasons. The first was because it was within driving distance. I was trying to be a good steward of LifeWay’s resources and going to a store within driving distance is much cheaper than flying. The second reason is because I teach Sunday school. Most of you know I co-teach with another guy. March is his month to teach so I did not have to ask him to cover for me. The most unfortunate thing, other than being away from Allison and Cooper, is that I will have to miss church this week. The inventory process lasts from about 6 pm until 2 am on Saturday and then from about 1 pm until 6 pm on Sunday. Because the store is out of town, I will be staying the night in Huntsville and won’t be back for church Sunday morning. Fortunately, I can download the podcast of the message from Sunday and listen to the first message of the new series by our pastor. That is pretty much going to be my weekend in a nutshell. Anyone doing anything fun this weekend?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Are We Following God?

As I have told you before, Allison is a faithful reader of “My Utmost for His Highest.” She received it as a gift and often references what it has to say. Right after she got hers I ordered my own copy. At some point either during a visit to Nashville (we were living in Lexington at the time) or when we moved back, mine got lost. I didn’t count it as a big deal because there are multiple sites that you can get it for free online. However, because it is not sitting in front of me I rarely read it. Today I went to our store here downtown and bought a copy of the paperback version because I want to draw from what so many tell me is great day in and day out.

The first line of today's devotion is “It is easier to serve or work for God without a vision and without a call, because then you are not bothered by what He requires.” Wow, did that ever hit home. Lately I have read some books and listened to various sermon podcasts that have really turned things upside down. One of the things that I read was, don’t just pray for God’s will, but pray and act on what He tells you. There have been so many times that I have prayed, “God please tell me your will,” but I don’t think I was really expecting to hear from Him. Well, the last few weeks I have really been praying and expecting Him to answer. Now I just hope I listen and act on what He is telling me. Until next time...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

New Vision for this Blog

When I began this blog my intention was to give people insight into my life. I definitely have done that, just not as regularly as I would have thought (especially lately). I think one reason is that I just don't really have that much to say. Another reason may be that I Twitter a lot of what I do during the day, so I feel that I would be repeating things. Well, I have decided that I am going to make a better effort in making this blog what I hoped it would be when I started it, a peek inside everyday's adventure. I am going to make a serious attempt at giving my "faithful readers" an inside look at what goes on with the Bussells. It may not be daily, but my goal is at least several times a week. I am sure some of the stuff will be boring, but hey, no one's life is totally exciting all the time. So for my faithful readers, here goes nothing. See you tomorrow. Who knows what it will bring. Until next time...