Tomorrow marks the beginning of a brand new year, and many of us have new hopes and new habits that we are ready to enjoy and set in motion starting tomorrow. Personally, I’m making a commitment to eat less sugar, own less stuff, use less screen-time, get more sleep and embrace more silence in my life — I’m going to try and devote the first hour of every day to silence, psalm reading and prayer. We all know that there are things in our lives that we need to alter or do better, and the New Year often gives us the spark of motivation that we need to actually implement these things.
The week after Thanksgiving has become the most refreshing week of the year for Tanner and I. That is because every year for the last seven years, we have attended PAO’s Increase Conference during this time. This event provides a place for professional athletes to gather together and to learn from gifted speakers and teachers concerning how our Christian faith should be impacting our relationships, finances and careers.
Minor League Baseball can breed this awkward team dynamic where everyone's individual pursuit of the Big Leagues secretly but not-so-secretly trumps the overall performance of the team. Sadly (but truthfully), this can cause players to struggle with the success of their own teammates (especially those who play the same position). And so, even though your teammate's success will help the overall performance of the team, it can also be seen as a potential threat to your individual pursuit of being the next guy who gets called up to the Big Leagues.
The first groups of Jesus followers devoted themselves to core habits that helped strengthen their unity as a group and their allegiance to Jesus. These are core habits that have been carried on throughout the history of the church and are the essential elements that make up a healthy group of Jesus followers.