Thursday, June 30, 2011

High Encouragement

The past several weeks have been busy and rather intense. Work has been hectic and heavy, and then 10 days ago I threw my back out (again). It’s still trying to figure out how to get un-thrown-out, and I started physical therapy. My back muscles are a mess, the therapist said, tied up tight. It’s called tension and stress – I take it right to my back.

Last week, some good friends moved to San Antonio; we’ve known them for 20 years. We saw them on the Sunday before they left. We could probably walk into their house five years from now and it will seem like only five minutes have passed.

It’s one of those times when I need a little encouragement. OK, so perhaps more than a little.

I will tell you one thing that helps.

The High Calling.

It’s almost an embarrassment of riches – riches produced by real people.

I’ve been connected to The High Calling as a contributing editor for more than a year. I write for it, yes, but I get far more from what I read.

If you’d like to see how I start out each morning, take a look at Mark Robert’s Daily Reflection. Right now, we’re doing the Gospel of Luke.

On Mondays, it’s usually the Book Club, led by Laura Boggess; right now we’re taking a break between Guy Kawasaki’s Enchantment and the next book.

Tuesdays are work post days, edited by Bradley Moore. Most of the articles I write for THC end up here. The section covers a broad array of aspects of work, but all of it is about living our faith in the work place.

Wednesdays are what I call Family day, edited by Ann Kroeker. This is where you find people dealing with family issues of all shapes, sizes and varieties.

Thursdays are Gordon Atkinson’s meditations on faith. These are deep, honest, often raw and always profound.

Sam Van Eman edits and often writes the Friday posts on culture.

And then we have additional posts added on most days (including the Random Act of Poetry!) and the links into the posts written by the THC community on their own blogs.

Sunday usually brings an audio message from Howard Butt, the guy who started the whole High Calling thing way back when.

Riding herd on all of this is Marcus Goodyear, the editor, and Laura Barkat, the managing editor.

About three weeks back, I received an email from a reader who had just discovered my blog. As she was checking out various posts, she noticed the THC badge on the right-hand navigation. She clicked on it, and discovered “ a wealth of material” she had never run across before (her words, not mine) (but I agree).

The High Calling is about community, yes. But it’s also about individual people, people who are fallen and sinful just like I am but who struggle to serve God and to serve others.

And in that struggle, there for all of us to see, is where I find high encouragement.

Bonnie Gray over at Faith Barista is hosting a blog carnival on faith, and today’s topic is encouragement. To see more posts on the subject, please visit Faith Barista.

And check out The High Calling, too.

Photograph: From left, Sam Van Eman, David Rupert, yours truly, Claire Burge and Gordon Atkinson at Laity Lodge in Texas last fall for a meeting of the THC writing and editing staff.


Anonymous said...

Oh, that picture! I remember it! Sorry to hear about your back, Glynn. Take it easy, friend.

And yes, The High Calling is a wealth. Of material. Of encouragement. Of friendships. Of community. Thanks for highilighting it for others to discover.

Bill (cycleguy) said...

Been there done that with my back. Still happening from time to time. (Now is one of those times). Too much lifting of boxes, etc. Anyway, hope you are finding some relief Glynn. I enjoy reading your blog and often take some good stuff away from it. due to my schedule, I don't always comment. However, i do read, or is that lurk? Thanks for all you do.

Kelly Sauer said...

Hoping you feel better soon, Glynn. I hear you on the stress. THC offers such a place to rest, does't it?

David Rupert said...

Yes, the High Calling is a place that you know others have the same vision, a passion for things of heaven and are trying to bring a taste of them to earth.

You are loved and admired for your encouragement of other writers. Hope your back gets better!

Maureen said...

I can only second all that has been said before me. I feel strongly about the community that is THC, and have been so pleased to contribute to it.

Ann Kroeker said...

This overview would help any newcomer get the lay of the land, should they click through to TheHighCalling.

And Glynn? YOU are an encouragement.

May you find relief for your back. Later, when you're back to normal, may I recommend befriending a tennis ball? If you can figure out how to roll around on it, you can get a very nice deep tissue massage as frequently as you like. For free. :)

HisFireFly said...

I agree with Ann - encouragement is your middle name, Glynn!

I also agree that HCB is a shelter in the storm of the world.

I am all too aquainted with back pain myself, praying for perfect alignment, freedom from pain, His oil of healing to flow over you, now and in the days to come.

Duane Scott said...

I love THC.

I just don't know how to find enough time in the summer anymore...

I'm down to about 10 blogs I read.

Maybe I'll be able to start again in the winter.

Anonymous said...

I really appreciate THC too. Such honesty, passion, and heart. It's so encouraging! Thanks Glynn.

Caroline said...

Praying for your back right now, Glynn!

I've heard about The High Calling from several places. I believe it's time to thoroughly check it out now!

Patricia said...

Thanks for the overview... I remember finding it and being amazed that it even existed! Couldn't believe I had been missing out. Not anymore!
I can see that you are a blessing to your friends and loved ones, but you should probably know that you bless strangers like me with great encouragement. Praying tonight that you are blessed with healing, and freedom of movement without pain.

Bonnie Gray said...

Thanks for sharing your pic with the THC crew. It looks like a community of the brethren to me, breaking bread with the words that God's given you in your hearts.

It also touched me to hear how THC is a real fellowship of believers lifting each other up. You're so blessed to have a part in shepherding others, like me in the journey of writing with your insight and encouragement.

I'm really sorry to know you, my good friend, is having to go through back pain. As you know, I had to go through years of physical therapy and it is hard to have to go slow and in some cases stop. ;) But, it's a chance for friends like us to let you know how much you mean to us. And the encouragement you pour out, we can offer to you, in our prayers and our thoughts. You're doing to be in my prayers Glynn. Thank you for always thinking of us whenever you write, sharing from your experience, and keeping encouragement in mind for us. You ARE a blessing to me.