>> November 28, 2011
|Ministry is BUSY! MAKE time!|
©cat sasser & clutch
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|Ministry is BUSY! MAKE time!|
©cat sasser & clutch
TIP::Be sure you know what's in your credit report.
I have always been a little bit confused about Credit Reports and Scores, so I decided I would take the time to do a little research. As part of educating myself I went through the process of requesting and reviewing my own credit history (more on how to do this later). I am still not an expert on the topic, but I thought I'd share with you a few of the basics I learned.
So what goes into a credit report? I have to admit I was a little surprised at how detailed mine was. It contained information about all the credit cards I've ever opened, what the credit limit on each card is/was, my balance and payment history for each statement I ever received and my pending balances, as well as information on any credit cards I have closed. I also found information on how faithful I've been to pay my electric bill, water bill, etc. If I had school loans, a car loan, or a mortgage it would record all those details too.
|Get to know Heather here.|
|Notes from the hubby... make my day! Keep the pursuit going!|
©cat sasser & clutch
At its core ministry is about meeting the needs of others. Whether that means visiting the hospital for a 6 a.m. surgery, being a shoulder to cry on after a 2 a.m. break up, hosting an afternoon staff meeting, preparing a message, providing pizza for a late night study session, or making time for a date with your spouse and helping your kids with their homework, most of your day doesn’t belong to you.
The time constraints of ministry make it easy to justify the lack of attention we give our health. We are just too busy. After all, fast food is convenient. Gym memberships are expensive (especially if you don’t know if you can go consistently). And don’t even get me started on trying to get eight hours of sleep each night. Ministry often requires you to stay up late at an event just to get up early to do it all over again the next morning. You have intense physical demands on your body, especially when you top that ministry off with a family. How are you supposed to have the energy to exercise?
No matter how realistic the justifications you use sound, they are really just excuses. Contrary to the belief that adding exercise into an already exhausting routine results in burnout, research shows that regular exercise not only helps control weight, but it reduces risk levels for various diseases as well as improves overall mood and increases energy levels to sustain activity.
Just as you are called to be a good manager of your money (Malachi 3:10), your time (Ephesians 5:15-16), and your gifts (Romans 12:6-8), God also calls you to be a good steward with your body. First Corinthians 6:19-20 says, “Don’t you know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God in your body.”
You might ask, But isn’t it selfish to spend that time and money on myself when there are so many others in need? Well, there’s definitely a line that can easily be crossed from health to vanity. Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves.” If you work out to have six-pack abs or deprive your body of necessary nutrients just to squeeze into a size 0, that’s a completely different issue. But when you exercise to give yourself extra energy for your family and the ministry God has entrusted to you, you’re taking care of God’s temple.
Taking care of yourself also puts you in a better position to take care of those in your ministry, which is how Jesus said was the way to show your love for Him (John 21:15-17). Not to mention, it helps to set a positive example. If those in your ministry don’t witness you making your health a priority, they are more likely to not make it a priority of their own.
So, what are five practical ways you can begin prioritizing your health without sacrificing the values already in place in your life?
1. Don’t allow yourself to stress over the scale or compare yourself to other women. Judge your health based on how much energy you have and how well your clothes fit. Every woman’s body is different. We all have trouble zones, even if they’re only in our imaginations. At the same time you’re wishing for her thin thighs, I assure you she’s wishing for someone else’s toned arms. Instead of weighing yourself every morning and getting hung up on the numbers, find an outfit that you feel comfortable in when it fits well and try it on regularly.
2. Keep trying different workouts until you find something you enjoy. It doesn't matter what burns the most calories. The best workout for you is anything that you’ll do with consistency, which is much easier when it’s something you like to do! As a fitness lifestyle coach, one of my favorite parts of my job is helping my clients find their “solemate workout.” Working out is no longer something they dread or one more thing on the to-do list. It becomes something they look forward to every day. For some of you, you may enjoy jogging outside with a friend or participating in an adult softball league. Others may want to join a gym and attend group fitness classes. Maybe you prefer exercise DVDs to do at home so you can save some time and money. Keep trying different routines until you find something that works with your lifestyle.
3. Don’t hesitate to ask for help if you’re not sure where to start. People come to you for spiritual counsel because you work at the church or you’ve been to seminary. Likewise, personal trainers, fitness coaches, and nutritionists are educated in their fields and are there to give you advice. My son's smile is about the only joy for me that can top helping people transform their habits into healthy lifestyle choices.
4. Don’t beat yourself up if you mess up one time. So many people give up on their health and fitness goals after they blow their new routine just one time. Don’t let one unhealthy meal or skipped workout be a reason to quit. Just make a healthy decision the next time you’re given an opportunity.
If it’s motivation you need, here you go: Getting in shape is an incredible witnessing tool. Now, before you think I’m taking this too far, hear me out. If someone asks you for advice on their workout and it works, do you think they might ask you for advice again? Probably. Only this time, it might be because they have a tough decision to make in their personal life. Once someone trusts you in one area of life, it’s a very easy transition for them to trust you with more important issues. God may even open the door for you to lead them to the real source behind your strength: Jesus.
Michelle is especially passionate about helping those in ministry get healthy. Contact her here if you'd like her help in getting started on making your health goals a reality.
As a church planter, you are pioneering a new work. You are taking new territory and make no mistake, pulling down strongholds is a requirement in the process! This is one of the hardest seasons you'll encounter. Regardless of the number of years you've been in ministry, how long you've been a Chrisitan; the warfare is intense.
|Eating around the dinner table with our staff! |
©cat sasser & clutch
cheap? i prefer "inexpensive."
I’ve been buying my own clothes ever since I was old enough to babysit. Because of that (and my
so-low-it-should-be-illegal modest hourly wage at the time) I had to learn how to make my dollars last. Even when my paycheck increased at my first real job my expenses started increasing as well, leaving minimal slack in my shopping budget. And when Ian and I got married and had a joint account? Well, that was the worst because he saw where all our money went!
Shopping on a limited budget can be totally overwhelming and not fun at all. But I think it’s important to determine on what you’ll splurge and on what you’ll save so that you don’t have to think so hard.
Luckily I’m blessed with a husband that loves when I look good just as much as I do (even though he tells me I look good when I know I don’t -- awww....). He budgets a monthly “allowance” for me to spend on clothes. I’m spoiled, I know. But the truth is I’d want to spend that money anyway so it’s actually a good thing in more ways than one...
|An outfit that cost me about $40 minus the shoes (those were a splurge item)|
Lifeway is hosting a "Minsters' Wives get real" broadcast TOMORROW! So make your plans to tune in live at 9:30am central.
I'm rather excited about this because there are not a lot of "web conferences" or "conferences" for Pastors' Wives.
Panel discussions are one of my favorites!
Click here for live video streaming.
There will be a live audience of 300 Pastors' Wives.
Our friend Brandi Wilson from Leading and Loving It will be on the panel discussion board and that is exciting in itself!
Other guest on the panel include: Rachel Lovingwood, Leighann McCoy, Jennifer Landrith, Pam Case. The live event is FREE.
I Thessalonians 5:18
Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
With the holidays around the corner, I thought it would be fun to share some family traditions that you do in your home, during the holidays.
One of the Thanksgiving traditions that we adopted from my husband’s family is on the day of Thanksgiving, we go around the table and say what you are thankful for. That may seem simple to some, but the first time I had Thanksgiving with their family I thought it was the most amazing thing.
This actually turns into a real emotional time some years, contingent on how the year has gone. It’s a beautiful thing because the bible teaches us to be thankful in ALL things. Everyone participates with a sincere heart and it great to see what the Lord has done in someone’s life over the year.
What is one family tradition you and your family do?
Cat Sasser is our new CLUTCH photo blogger.
Cat has 10 years experience in full-time ministry, covering everything from book-keeping & administration to outreach & women's ministry. She attended Southeastern University, majoring in pastoral counseling with a minor in youth & missions.
As a teenager, Cat spent every summer doing mission work overseas. She plans to spend her life (in the same manner) being used up by God, whether it be overseas or right here on her home base.
Bobby and Cat have been married for two years. She calls herself a "newbie" to the PW club. She also became a "newbie" to the Mom club on June 28th, 2011.
Cat's life verse is Jeremiah 29:11 and she has stood on that promise while facing all of the bumps along the road of ministry, marriage, mommyhood, and life. She loves photography, and can't wait to share photos from her life as a PW here on CLUTCH.Share
We know (from personal experience!) that being a PW is about more than just church issues. It's about marriage, family, money, politics, hospitality, forgiveness, frustration, ecstasy - and the list goes on. It's about our public life and our private lives.
As we seek to be godly women who care for our families and support our husbands and love our church members and train our children and, and, and... often we totally forget to take care of our own needs. We forget to be healthy. We forget to look nice. We get overwhelmed by pinching pennies to stay within the budget.
So we want to bring some freshness to CLUTCH. Here are three new writers who will be blogging under our new LIFESTYLES column. A slight departure from our normal content, but we hope you'll enjoy it.
Look for these writers on Fridays!
I studied apparel design at Oregon State University in Corvallis and then switched to Interior Design when I transferred to Portland Community College. Though I never finished college, my passions still revolve around design and creativity.
I'm a part-time administrative assistant at our church and a full-time wife! My personal blog, Frills for Thrills, is an outlet for me to share my passion for fashion and interior decorating, crafting and thrifting, and all the other fun things that come with being a girl! Over at Sitting Solo I also write about the blessings and burdens that come with being a Pastor's wife. Otherwise, find me right here on CLUTCH!
I am so excited to write this fashion column on CLUTCH to share affordable and creative tips to broadening your closet and style. I hope you'll share your ideas with us too!
No matter how natural, conservative, or eccentric you are -- all women long to feel beautiful. I believe fashion is an easy way to feel good about ourselves and confident standing next to our man when other women in the church try to get at him! : )
I struggled with anorexia and obsessive over-exercise for four years, but was brought out of my addiction and restored to health through a real relationship with God and an understanding of His plan for my life.
Because of how poorly I treated my body in the past, I am amazed every day that my job is now helping others get healthy the right way — through a balanced lifestyle of proper nutrition and exercise. You can read about my journey in my book, The Look that Kills: An Anorexic’s Addiction to Control.
Now I'm the new mom of baby Noah, as well as a nutrition coach and fitness instructor. I'm a pastor's wife in Austin, TX.
If you’re into the academic thing: In 2005, I received my Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies with a minor in Psychology from The University of Tennessee in Knoxville, TN. In 2010, I earned my Masters of Arts in Christian Education (Women’s Ministry Concentration) from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX.
Everything I do revolves around my top priorities: my faith in Jesus Christ, my incredible family, and my commitment to a balanced lifestyle of fitness and proper nutrition.
Growing up a pastor's kid, I always said I would never marry one, but love has a way of changing things. When the guy I'd had my eye on since middle school announced he was going to study theology, I gave in.Share
Andrew and I have been serving in our first two churches for almost a year. We are also blessed with a 2 year old son, Jaden, and a six month old baby girl, Lilly.
Between being a PW and mother of two little ones I rarely have time to "play," but when I do, I love to scrapbook, decorate, shop, and cook. Budgeting/Finances is another one of my hobbies that grows from lots of personal experience. Raised in a single-income home, serving as a missionary to India for two years, and currently raising a family on one income has taught me a lot about economy. I enjoy finding ways to minimize our spending while still providing nice things and creating quality experiences for my family.
During these financially challenging times I know I'm not the only one pinching pennies, so I am looking forward to sharing some of my tips with you and hearing your tricks too. My prayer is that we grow together as we seek to bring glory to God in the way we use our financial resources.
Everybody has a favorite. But when you're the pastor's family, holiday
choices convictions sometimes become a bigger deal than they would be for other people. If you don't celebrate a certain holiday (say, Halloween?) church members may feel that you're judging them if they do. Or if you celebrate a holiday (say, Passover?) then others may feel that you think less of them if they don't.
In our home (the Asaftei's), we keep our holidays simple. We feel that Jesus is best glorified when our celebratory experiences are focused on him. That means we pretty much skip all the stuff that's driven by materialism, consumerism, celebrities and/or a ton of unhealthy junk that's going to make us sick next week anyway.
When people ask questions, we try to give sweet, simple answers that don't demean or condemn but still clearly explain the reason why we made our choice.
How about you? How do you deal with the challenge of holidays?
What are your convictions? Have you taken flak for them?