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Saturday, February 13, 2010

In A Pit With A Lion On A Snowy Day

by Jill Nutter


I dare you! I dare you to chase lions with me. Because if you do, you just might find God calling you to do things you never thought you'd be able to do: face your fear, take that risk, discover how big our God really is. I dare you. Come on. It'll be fun.

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A friend of mine introduced me to a book a couple years ago called, "In A Pit With A Lion On A Snowy Day: How To Survive And Thrive When Opportunity Roars." This is a book written by Mark Batterson who is the lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C. He wrote this book in 2006.
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Batterson points us to 2 Samuel, Chapter 23:20-21. NLT

20 There was also Benaiah son of Jehoiada, a valiant warrior from Kabzeel. He did many heroic deeds, which included killing two champions of Moab. Another time, on a snowy day, he chased a lion down into a pit and killed it. 21 Once, armed only with a club, he killed a great Egyptian warrior who was armed with a spear. Benaiah wrenched the spear from the Egyptian’s hand and killed him with it.

The entire book is based on this scripture and it's one I'd never given much thought to. Mark Batterson takes us on a journey and suggests you look your lion in the eye. He'll explore the seven following skills with you as you learn to chase your lions.

* Overcoming adversity snowboarding Pictures, Images and Photos
* Unlearning fears
* Embracing uncertainty
* Calculating risks
* Seizing opportunities
* Defying odds
* Looking foolish

Batterson uses Oswald Chambers words to begin Chapter 5 and it sums up the way God wants us to live.

"To be certain of God means that we are uncertain in all our ways; we do not know what a day may bring forth. This is generally said with a sigh of sadness; it should rather be an expression of breathless expectation."

Just imagine that! Breathless Expectation.

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God doesn't want us to play it safe. He wants us to be risk-takers. If you need encouragment to face a really fierce lion I suggest you read this book. You'll find it the fortification you need to become a lion chaser. And just in case you think you can't, Batterson reminds us to use our adversity.

"If you don't turn your adversity into ministry, then your pain remains your pain. But if you allow God to translate your adversity into ministry, then your pain becomes someone else's gain."

You find out more about Mark Batterson at his blog http://www.evotional.com/

Well we've had some pretty snowy days here in Ohio this past week. I'm happy to say I wasn't in the pit with any lions, but we all have our share of adversity. My hubby and I have been able to help others because of our experiences raising a child with a disability.

Serious Question: What about you? Want to share any experiences you had to face and were able to turn them around to help others?

Fun Question: If you could participate in any Olympic Sport, Winter or Summer Games, what would it be?

I grew up on horses so I'd have to say Three Day Eventing
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Another fun question: What are you doing on Valentine's Day?

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17 comments:

  1. You have inspired me on a morning when I'm up cooking for a brunch. Our God is soooo good!

    What am I doing for Valentine's Day? Hosting a ladies brunch/chick flick (Miss Potter), going to a ladies basketball game, and hosting a progressive dinner that ends at our church with desserts. A wonderful way to celebrate several kinds of love...but to keep my eyes glued on The Savior as the source of our love.

    Blessings,
    Patti

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  2. Cool title and a wakening challenge!

    I'm judging stroke and turn at a swim meet from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Then regrouping and going to church in the evening. Not a romantic day at all. :-(

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  3. Sounds like my hubby would love this book. I'll need to get it for him.

    Olympic sport - gymnastics. I was a gymnast until I got too tall and then switched to dance.

    Valentine's Day - we actually went out last night since our babysitter (oldest daughter) is busy today and tomorrow. We went to Red Lobster and watched the new movie "Valentine's Day" which was hysterical, well-written, and well-acted. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but be warned, it does earn it's PG-13 rating.

    I've gone through some very hard experiences with dance ministry that have allowed me to minister to upcoming dance leaders. I've also had some rough times in my marriage that allow me to minister to young brides.

    Thanks for the great post.

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  4. Jilly, this really spoke to me this morning. Especially this quote: "If you don't turn your adversity into ministry, then your pain remains your pain. But if you allow God to translate your adversity into ministry, then your pain becomes someone else's gain."

    Thank you for this thoughtprovoking post.

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  5. Oh! I forgot to add my Olympic sport. Figure skating. I would be a figure skater if I could. I like jokingly tell people I was doing a triple-flip when I broke my leg in two places. But in reality I was just slowing down to get off the ice and the skates caught in a ridge and, voila. Much to my dismay, I haven't been on skates since. But oh, how I'd love to.

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  6. Good Morning Everyone,
    So glad you liked the post. Mark has since written some other books, Wild Goose Chase: Reclaim the Adventure of Pursuing God by Mark Batterson (Paperback - Aug. 19, 2008)and Primal: A Quest for the Lost Soul of Christianity by Mark Batterson (Hardcover - Dec. 22, 2009).

    Patti, your Valentine's Day sounds great. I've watched Ms. Potter and I love it. You all will have fun. And your cooking! Very brave. You must enjoy it. I have to admit that cooking isn't my greatest strength.

    Wenda, you gotta find a way to romance that day of yours a bit. Even some hot chocolate and some Hershey Kisses would do the trick. Just drop them in the hot chocolate and share it with someone you love.:)

    I've got to go run some errands now, but I'll be back later. Have fun.

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  7. Jill, I really think I'm going to get this book. I can see myself with the yellow highlighter. We need (I need) to start stepping out and taking chances for Christ.

    For Valentine's Day I am spending the day with the person who is the sunshine of my life. This means I'll be reading lots of Goodnight Moon, watching Hot Dog Hot Dog Hot Diggety Dog video (Mickey Mouse Club House) online and eating pretend food that my granddaughter likes to serve us one and all. Dogs and Grandma each get to enjoy her tasty treats.

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  8. Hey Dina,
    I think dance ministry is awesome. I'm so clumsy in that respect that I can only imagine being a good dancer. And doesn't that fit well with the fact that you were a gymnast? Another awe inspiring ability. I would love to go see Valentine's Day, sounds like fun. And that you can minister to young brides is a gift. Use it often!
    I think your hubby would like Batterson's books.

    Hi there Suzie!
    I didn't know you used to ice skate! And I like the story of the triple flip. Always good to use when you have to deal with that kind of accident. That must have really hurt. I was never any good at it. The best I ever did was run and glide. I couldn't figure out how good skaters kept moving. Go figure. :) Figure skating.:) Love to watch it.

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  9. Hmm. My previous comment isnt' showing up. So forgive if posted twice. Mark was our pastor. We attended NCC when we lived in DC. Both of us are as far in our careers as we are because of this series of sermons he preached from the book. We walked into the church because of a mailing they sent out, didn't know what to expect, and... Things just changed for us.

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  10. Jill, great review! Laurie Alice, I'm glad you were blessed by having Mark as your pastor. For Valentines Day, my hubby and I celebrated last night by seeing Singing in the Rain at a local theatre. One of my hubby's work friends performed in the cast and we had a great time :-)

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  11. Narelle, I watched a live performance of Singing in the Rain last spring at Regent University Theatre. It was really fun.

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  12. Jilly, I'm afraid I gave you the wrong idea. I *never* glided or flipped or leaped on the ice. I only went 'round in circles. But! I used to imagine that's what I was doing, and I never fell. Not one time in my entire life. Until that fateful day...and the first fall was the nastiest. Of course, it was right before I turned 40, so I spent my birthday on crutches and couldn't go para-sailing as I'd hoped to do.

    Narelle, I'm glad you had such a great time celebrating V-Day! It sounds like so much fun.

    Laurie, I'm echoing Narelle. I'm so glad you were blessed by Mark. What a great and wonderful story.

    Dina, I was thinking of you today as I was listening to the radio. They were playing a song I'd never heard before. Free to Follow God? I'm not actually sure of the title, or even the words since it was my first time hearing it. But one of the lines was, "I'm free to dance." :-)

    I'm so mortified that I had a typo in each of my previous comments. I hope there are none here!

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  13. Hi Deb!
    I think you've got a fantastic Valentine's Day planned. What more could you ask for? I love Good Night Moon.

    Laurie Alice,
    I can't believe you went to NCC! How wild is that. Here I am blogging about Snow Day and you know exactly what I'm talking about. Have you read his other books yet? Thanks so much for letting us know about this experience. I'd love to hear more from you about that experience some time.

    Narelle and Dina,
    I'm a Singing in the Rain fan too. Just love it.

    Suzie,
    No worries! I understood you. I probably just didn't say it right. :) And we don't worry about typos here. At least I don't. :)

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  14. Good post, Jill. Thanks for the info on the book. Fasinating title.

    An Olympic sport - rowing. Definitely rowing. It's my favorite form of exercise when I'm in my groove.

    Valentine's Day - We were in the city today and hubby took me to my favorite eating place - Classic Buffet. Tomorrow will be a regular day with church and relaxing. Except the table will have surprise treats when we awake. :) But we were out last night too at a Youth Fundraiser so I've had my share of fun this weekend.

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  15. Jill and Suzie, I will be blogging on dance next Sunday as it relates to song. I'm going to keep bringing that up since we don't get as many visitors on Sunday :) But, I'm really excited. It's not about dance in the church or as a ministry, it's just about dancing with joy from the heart.

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  16. I've got to check this book out. Thanks, Jill.

    We've been entertaining out-of-state family, so we'll have a quiet Valentine's celebration: heart shaped pizza and the Olympics!

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  17. I needed this today. I'm worried about looking foolish. I'm concerned about the strain, risk, and work that goes with writing.

    I'd be a figure skater!

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