These days age limits barely exist. Toddlers careen down snow-covered mountains on skis while eighty year olds run marathons. Now in the fifty-something category for yours truly, I beg to talk some transformation.
While it is ultra important to take care of yourself and to get the proper exercise, I’d like to suggest one’s ATTITUDE makes a whale of a difference when navigating life (for the big picture), or when learning a new sport such as snow skiing, just for a fun lil’ example.
Many moons ago John and I were invited to go snow skiing in Colorado with several friends. This was the chance of a lifetime for us twenty-somethings. Small detail: I had never been skiing before.
Plunking myself in ski school, I learned how to snow plow. Eventually I could keep the skis parallel. Finally I learned to spread a lovely arc of snow upon stopping. Now a “big dog”, I was ready for the “big girl” slopes.
One day our friends said, “Meet us at the top for lunch! The view and the food is fabulous!!! And there are all kinds of slopes to get you back down.” (Meaning beginners were welcome.)
John was elated to have me join him on the ski lift. He’s a proficient skier and he had been patiently waiting while I’d been in ski school.
At one point while riding the lift up to the top of the mountain, it was snowing pretty hard and the snow was pelting our faces. I whispered, “Oh, how I wish this were sand and we were at the beach.” Yep, John heard me. He laughed…I think.
Lunch at the mountaintop restaurant was indeed delicious and the view spectacular. Most of our group was black diamond level skiers or blue at the very least (advanced to intermediate). No greenies (beginners) but me.
Things went downhill from there. (Pun intended) We could not find a green slope to return to the mountain’s base. Nope, nowhere, no sir.
John sweetly suggested, “Oh, you can handle a blue. Let’s just go slowly.” Engulfed by moguls, and none-too-enamored with any of them, down-via-the-derriere became my MOT (mode of transportation). While the sky was already a beautiful hue of blue, I confess I colored it blue-er. Arg.
So, in my case, I learned to ski too late. I had a bad attitude coupled with fear which makes for a lousy combination. WIMPY is one adjective which comes to mind.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, another one of our friends on the trip was also fairly new to skiing. Unbelievably, she was negotiating black diamonds, effortlessly, in a couple of days. To this day, she’s determined and won’t quit ‘til she grasps what she’s learning. WARRIOR-LIKE comes to mind. (This little girl below is well on her way!)
Over the past few weeks we’ve been learning about different chicks from Holly Wagner’s book, God Chicks—Living Life as a 21st Century Woman. Holly uses the term “chick” to have fun, not to be disrespectful. (For previous chick types, see …THE Just B U Chick and the Princess Chick…) This week we’ll be encouraged to purposely transform into a Warrior Chick.
Holly shows us what it takes to become a warrior. While she offers several warrior characteristics, all of which are worth pursuing (please do read her book!), I’m convinced the most important one is to STAY at the post to which you have been assigned.
I suspect you have many different posts. For example, I currently have the post of being a wife, a mother, a friend, and a teacher/writer. What posts do you have? Most posts are life-long.
Most posts are no piece of cake. Take marriage for example. When you got engaged and were in the honeymoon phase, yes, you thought marriage would be a piece of cake. Soon challenges come and how do you handle them? Do you abandon your post? NO! You stay: in sickness and in health, thru’ dirty laundry, dirty diapers, teensie weensie arguments, and blown budgets. You STAY.
Same with children. They won’t always do as we like for them to do. Do we dump ‘em? Say, “Go fend for yourself?” NO! We STAY.
Same with friends. Holly Wagner discusses friends and forgiveness at length. Warriors STAY at their posts AND go the distance.
The KEY to warrior attitude is being courageous. Courage kills fear. Holly cited Lisa Beamer as a great example. Lisa’s husband Todd was one of many killed on September 11th, 2001 when his flight crashed in Pennsylvania. “On October 19th, just a little more than a month after her husband was killed, Lisa boarded the same Newark to San Francisco flight that her husband had been on…The warrior in her rose up!” Lisa made a statement against fear.
2 Chronicles 20:17 says, “You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; STAND FIRM and see the deliverance the Lord will give you Judah and Jerusalem….Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.”
The Life Application Bible helps us understand the above verse better: “How do we let God fight for us? (1) By realizing the battle is not ours, but God’s; (2) By recognizing human limitations and allowing God’s strength to work through our fears and weaknesses; (3) By making sure we are pursuing God’s interests and not just our own selfish desires; (4) By asking God for help in our DAILY battles.”
Holly teaches “the Chinese character for crisis is actually the combination of two concepts: opportunity and danger. It is all a matter of how you look at it.” All of us can transform wimpy attitudes into warrior ones! IT IS NEVER TOO LATE… NO AGE LIMITS!!!
Many of you know Kristen Sauder. Kristen is valiantly battling cancer. (www.kristensauder.com ) She is staying at her post of wife, Mom, friend, writer, radio talk show host (when she is able). Her faith is stronger than it was before her diagnosis and she is clinging to it fiercely. She is a warrior chick if there ever was one.
Ephesians 6: 10-20, on the Armor of God is the best Scripture for us warrior chicks. This should be the first bit of attire we put on every day:
The Armor of God
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should. (NIV)
Note the pieces of armor as well as the number of times we’re told to STAND. The Apostle Paul tells us to be strong, to put on the armor, and to pray, being alert, declaring the Gospel. Tall order. Excellent words of wisdom.
The Bible study I’m currently in is by Tammy Head, called Duty or Delight? Knowing Where You Stand with God. Tammy further expounds on the Ephesians passage: “There are four requirements to living victoriously: 1 – Know the Battle that’s raging” (Warrior Chicks courageously fight battles.), 2 – “Know the role your identity plays” (STAY at your post!) , 3 – “Recognize and resist Satan’s attacks” (as Warrior Chicks, we must heed James 4:7 – “Submit yourselves, then to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”, and 4 – “STAND FIRM in the Armor of God.” Go back and put that armor on!
We could spend weeks on the armor of God. Navigating life with a warrior attitude requires the Sword of the Spirit. Guess what it is? The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. (See vs. 17 above.)
Hebrews 4:12 tells us: “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
Tammy taught us that “a Roman soldier’s sword wasn’t long but rather light as to be used in hand-to-hand combat…Truly having a tight grip on it was a matter of life and death.” We must be women who have a tight grip on our swords.
Kristen Sauder obviously has a tight grip on her sword. She frequently shares in her blog how the Word of God, her Sword of the Spirit, is sustaining her. She is patiently enduring cancer AND, she and her family are ministering to so many of us without even knowing it.
My friends, we do not have to be “tough stuff” on the exterior. As long as we’re armored up, we are warriors–wielding God’s Word. We are warriors, STAYING at our posts.
Warrior Chicks: Hold up your swords and claim Galatians 6:9: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Remember, NO AGE LIMITS!!! To God be the Glory.
‘Til next time!
(This post is dedicated to the strongest Warrior Chick I know: Kristen Sauder. Of all the Bible studies she’s written, her Praying for your Prodigal–a Journey through Luke 15 study by far continues to encourage me not to give up praying for prodigals. And for you readers out there, please hold Kristen and her family tightly in your prayers.)