Speechwriting: Corporate, Weddings, Retirement


Whatcha Gonna Do? Inordinate Time in a Busy World

Blessed recently with an inordinate amount of free time, I wondered how to spend it. It is much like finding a few hundred bucks on the street: it isn't much, but it is at the same time significant.

Time is always a blessed thing, even to the condemned man. I am not condemned.

From Edgar Allan Poe's "The Bells"

Hear the sledges with the bells-
Silver bells!
What a world of merriment their melody foretells!
How they tinkle, tinkle, tinkle,
In the icy air of night!
While the stars that oversprinkle
All the heavens, seem to twinkle
With a crystalline delight;
Keeping time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the tintinnabulation that so musically wells
From the bells, bells, bells, bells,
Bells, bells, bells-
From the jingling and the tinkling of the bells.

  • Publishing. Over the years, I have written hundreds of poems, and quite a number of short pieces. It is time to collect them as a book and submit them. I have a few themes which might work: the mystery and humor of death (much less morbid than it sounds), biblical stories retold, nursery rhymes and children's verse, minor humor, rural life. A dozen or so poems have been published, and I know I have more than a few readers who might be interested.
  • Book reviews. I have hundreds of short reviews posted on Amazon.com, but have a massive pile of books I committed to review. Now's the time.
  • Art. I am active in Lively Arts, a Christian artists group. My art is writing, though many of the others are involved in more visual arts. A few writers are there, so I'm hardly the lone pen. I'm not sure what my extra time can amount to, but I'm on the lookout. (Contact me if you are interested in such a group, and I'll connect you).
  • Professional website: I manage over a dozen blogs, and one website. What I need is a professional quality site, though. I am unsure what it will do, but I have time to think about it.

  • How long has it been since I have actively and successfully to memorize Scripture? Never. When I taught regularly a Bible study in a county jail, and when roommates in colleges and I studied apologetics, I absorbed the Word. I learned a lot. I memorized it, but not on purpose. It just stuck.
  • Prayer: I'm more active here than I have been in years, but the bar is set high: to pray without ceasing. No exact goal in mind here, but I do want my first action to be a word with God.

  • Speed. I have been slowly working toward running under 20:00 for a 5K for around nine months. That goal is still there. Surrounding that goal is the constancy of fitness. I ran well last summer, and into the fall, but then fell off the wagon. Fitness will follow the discipline of working out regularly.
  • A long race. This might just mean a 10-miler, but it might mean a marathon. I might run a June 200-mile relay (only 19 miles at the most for me, broken into three portions, and much likely fewer miles due to the skill of my teammates).

  • CareFest 2008: I have been talking with Chris McElwee from Wheaton Bible Church. He's a pastor there heading up, among other things, CareFest 2008. The gist of CareFest is for local churches to reach out into our community to help them in a one day blitz of volunteerism. Paint, fix, clean, and a lot more. It equals thousands of man hours and donated goods. Anyway, I might be doing the PR for it. Time is needed, and time I have.
  • Small group: I'm in a solid small group in which I am getting to know other couples living for the Lord. These are candid folks trying to live a life that's true.
    * One big project we're doing is developing our "life stories," which is part autobiography and part spiritual journey. I have 50 minutes, and there's a lot to tell. How to tell the important and glorifying, while not giving fodder for the Enemy is the challenge.
    * Time I have also to connect with a few of the guys, so that is the plan.

The Long Run, by the Eagles (watch/listen to the very cool version of Hotel California) .
The song has little do with running, but why not? I was in the mood.

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