March 1, 2010

Goin' for the Gold!!

I love watching the Olympics - seriously I'm a junkie for the games!  Whether it's the Summer or Winter events, my husband and I can't wait to plop down in front of the tube each evening with a big bowl of buttered popcorn and route for our athletes!  Their stories of commitment, dedication and passionate pursuit of the highest award within their sport is amazing to me.  With an undaunted spirit each one continues to press on through pain, setback and disappointment with their eyes upon the prize - the gold!!

I particularly enjoy the women's gymnastics events during the Summer games and am intrigued by all of the tiny young gals who at a very early age forfeited a life of little girl normality to a life of fierce competition, rigorous training and commitment to learn the skill of superhuman graceful balance, resilience and stamina.  How in the world they can walk and run with the grace of a gazelle on a four inch wide balance beam and then fling themselves into mid air and stick their landing perfectly in one graceful power packed fell swoop is astounding to me!  Or, during the floor exercise competition perform as gracefully as a ballerina while amassing such great speed to tumble, vault, whirl, summersault and fly through the air and stick a landing at an exact mark upon the corner of the mat!  Simply amazing!

Don't laugh, ya'll....but I wish I could do that (I know just the mental picture of me doing a balance beam or floor exercise competition event is hilarious)!  Maybe it's because I admire their passion and envy the fulfillment it must bring to their hearts and emotions to hit their mark. They say that these atheletes visualize themselves performing every move of their routine before they even climb on the beam or walk onto the mat blocking everything else out except sticking a perfect 10 landing.  They remain totally undaunted and unfazed by what's going on around them - such an unbroken focus!

I had the most amazing (and funny) experience right after the Bejing '08 Summer games!  I wrote the happening in my journal and really haven't given it much thought until the last week or so while watching the Winter games and I want to share it with you. God does these things in my journey sometimes.....they make me laugh and I think He gets a good laugh out of them too!

August 26, 2008 journal entry......

Running, Jumping and Tumbling in Walmart - Not Beijing!!

I had the most unusual sensation or shall I say strong desire yesterday while strolling through Walmart!  I realize I became a gymnastic junkie during the Beijing Olympics and found myself cheering for our gymnasts with reckless abandon, but the sensation that came over me at Walmart just makes me LOL and marvel at the Lord's sense of humor!!

I was directing my cart down a long unobstructed aisle toward the hardware department when suddenly everything within me wanted to take off running, jumping, cartwheeling and flying through the air and upon landing, plant my feet with hands lifted high and shouts of Praise to the Lord right in the middle of Walmart!!!  It was one of those moments that seemed like nothing else was just me and Him!!  I must say it was a real rush just thinking about performing such an off the wall feat.....needless to say, I didn't do it (but boy did I want to...if only!)!  I'm quite sure if I had, it would have made the local evening news....."Middle aged woman vaults and tumbles through Walmart hardware aisle, sticks a perfect landing and deserves the gold for guts, boldness and form"!!! LOL!  

As I brought my thoughts back down to the real world, I continued on with my shopping and began to wonder if that's the "feeling" David felt when he just abandoned reason and praised the Lord with all his might!  David had walked with God and experienced His faithfulness and amazing manifestations of His presence and power and just came to the point of letting go and expressing his gratefulness and praise with unrestrained freedom!  I think his heart spilled over upon his emotions and he began dancing running  leaping and cartwheeling with unrestrained joy!!!
"David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before the Lord with all his might!"  II Samuel 6:14
When I survey my life's journey thus far, I can see the hand prints of God all along the way.  He's always been so faithful, loving, compassionate, full of grace and continually revealing His goodness towards me!  Through good times and bad He's always been there and walked me through every season....forever encouraging me through His Word and leading me by His Spirit.  Even if I hadn't been walking this journey with Him for a long time now and had just met Jesus and surrendered to his Love, just the wonder of wonders that my name is written in the Book of Life and am now in right standing with God and can boldly approach the throne of Grace, should stir unrestrained heartfelt expressions of praise, worship and joyful adoration unto Him all the day long!!  He is so worthy!!

How 'bout you today?  You don't have to "feel" like it to praise Him!  Just begin rehearsing His mercy, faithfulness, love, grace and covenant blessings He's bestowed upon you and "bust" out a praise!!  He's listening - go for the gold - go for His heart!!

"From the rising of the sun to the going down of the same
the Name of the Lord is to be praised"
Psalm 113:3

"Bless  (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, 
Oh my soul and all that is (deepest) within me, 
bless His holy name!"
Psalm 103:1 Amp (emphasis added)

"My tongue will speak of your righteousness and of your praises all day long"
Psalm 35:38

Oh, let us praise His Name forever!!  He is so worthy!!!

Love and Sweet Blessings!
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Nana Jul said...

What a wonderful story to inspire us to "keep our eyes on the goal", which takes all of our concentration, and rehearsing in our minds play by play how we will "do" this day, and to Praise Him all along the way! He is so worthy of Praise! Come, lets make Jesus smile today!
Love you,

Rose said...

I never thought about a trip to Walmart being similar to Olympic games...but now that you mention it. Lol. To me it seems more like hand to hand combat.

Great post...PRAISE GOD...his gold/goals are worth more than we can comprehend.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jackie.

My heart is going for gold. Why, because many a times...I have known that feeling of abandon and carefree in the Lord. Yes, when the Glory of the Lord comes nothing and no-one else's opinion matters.

Let us settle for nothing less than GOLD after our earthy marathon.

Blessings, Gladwell

Debbie said...

Oh Jackie this was such a good post. I had to laugh at your Wal-Mart moment, haha, and yet it really is how you feel sometimes when you are praising Him. I too am soo fascinated with the gymnastics, soo fun, soo strong, soo dedicated, just soo entertaining. What a wonderful analogy. Thanks for this upbeat post this morning, it really blessed me. Have a wonderful day...Hugs, Debbie

Deborah Ann said...

I had this same experience once. But it was in church, not Walmart. There were only about 10 of us there, we decided to stay after the service and worship God. In the middle of the music, I picked up the huge banner flag, and started running around the sanctuary with it. I ended up 'going down' at the altar, the flag flew out of my hands, and I was shaking so hard I could do nothing else but fall. If this happens at Walmart? Go for the gold!

Saleslady371 said...

Very funny, Jackie! Love your humor and ambition to praise our Lord with all your might.

Stacey said...

I am right there with you!

Debra@CommonGround said...

Loved reading this. I think the Lord desires us to worship with great abandon! I'd love to be able to do that too, but I'm thinking I'd end up in the ER! LOL!

Cathy said...

Excellent post. My husband always reminds us that you don't praise or worship God because you feel like it, you do it because He is Worthy!! said...

Such a great praise post Jackie! And I'm chuckling at the comments... Those 'bursts' of praise we all get are so special, but He's worthy of that praise even when we don't 'FEEL' that burst! (...she said to herself!...)

Loved this! The Wal Mart picture makes me smile!



Jacquelyn Stager said...

Sadly, I didn't have time to watch the Olympics this time...but I usually do enjoy them. I also enjoy watching the presentation of the medals. One time while sitting quietly in church, I looked up and had a little vision of the scene, only it was Jesus receiving the gold...and his "national anthem" was a loud hymn of praise coming from believers all over the world! Watching the Olympics does give us a little foretaste of things to come! And indeed, HE IS SO WORTHY!

Kathleen said...

I call these "gratitude attacks". They're liable to hit unexpectedly, and just about anywhere.

Nothing like loving the Lord with one's whole heart, mind AND body!

Grace on the Narrow Path said...

Thank you Jackie for all you do for HIM!!!!
Saw your commerical last night . . . laughed my head off!!!
Still keeping your kids in my prayers . . . it will happen soon.
Your sister in Christ,

Cherie Hill said...

LOVED this Jackie...I always imagined myself as an ice skater...the problem is...I can't even STAND on ice skates!! LOL
I'm so glad God has other plans in mind for me!! :)
By the way, your son and daughter in law have been very heavy on my heart...know that I'm praying for peace and contentment in their hearts that God is in control and knows what's best. It's so hard to trust in our valleys...but it's there that He gives us something far better than we ever imagined...persevering faith.
Love to you sister!

Jennifer @ said...

I've always loved the vision of David "dancing before the Lord with all his might." I want more of that in my life -- to praise him with no restraint, to give him my all in my life and my worship.

Cathy said...

I really enjoyed your post. I worked at Wal-Mart for 14 years and never saw anyone do that. :) I really need to start listening to all the beautiful music I have and writing some more songs for Him. Thanks so much for your sweet visits today. Blessings, Cathy

Marilyn in Mississippi said...

Jackie, this was just wonderful. And I'm gonna tell you a secret....shhhh....when I was a young girl I really, really wanted to be a gymnast! But, alas, when it came time for gymnastics class at school the parallel bars gave me a fright! ha But the pure bliss of watching those girls perform! It's actually better than if I had been able to do it myself I think! :)

Very inspiring post today! Mississippi

Diana Ferguson said...

Great post!

dtbrents said...

A wonderful thought. I enjoyed your post very much. You have a gift for teaching. I will read some more of your posts. Doylene

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Oh that we all would approach our King with a gold medal in mind. Sometimes, we settle for just "getting across the finish line."

Time to let loose, get running, and move closer to the prize our Father has for us heavenward in Christ Jesus. It's going to be something!


MilandDil Designs said...

Thanks for stopping by from Grammy Girlfriend. Teresa said she was sending friends my way and I'm thankful to be following you now.

The Wal Mart scene made me laugh. I remember dancing in the aisle with my precious husband at Wal Mart. Guess I'm not the only one who has done something unique at the local Wal Mart store.

Best to you, t

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