Sunday, December 26, 2010

Chapter VII

Australian lingo continued:
1. You don't put gas in your car, you put petrol in your car. Therefore don't say gas station, they won't know what you're talking about. It's a petrol station or a service station or more likely a servo station.
2. Aussie is pronounce Ozzie
3. The bush is used when describing the outback or anywhere that is outside of town.
4. Arvo (pronounced Avo) means afternoon.
5. A ute is what they call there trucks (a pathetic excuse of a pickup truck)
6. They're not tank-tops they're singlets
7. Celsius degrees are starting to sound normal and make sense.

Question you may want an answer to:
How was Christmas away from the fam and friends? Pretty weird but it would have been way worse if it had actually felt like Christmas around here. But since everyone walks around in singlets and jean shorts because it's 35 degrees Celsius (95 Fahrenheit) you don't really get the Christmassie feel if you know what I'm saying. It's really hard to believe I just passed through Christmas season and day. No tree, lights, wrapped presents, hot chocolate, or Christmas movies. Although, I am very blessed to have spent it with such cool people and such an amazing family as Kane and Karla Keatinge. At the end of it all though I'm still not down with the summer Christmas season and I don't really see myself spending another Christmas here because of it.

More recent thoughts:
The comfort zone is a behavioral state within which a person operates in an anxiety-neutral condition, using a limited set of behaviors to deliver a steady level of performance, usually without a sense of risk (
Tiger Wood’s has changed his swing several times over the course of his professional career and so many would want to ask “Why?” But before we ask why the guy who’s got a one way ticket to becoming the undisputed most accomplished and dominating golfer in the history of the sport would risk his entire game by changing his already successful swing, let’s look a little more at the player himself.
Tiger Woods (Chris Bayly, you’ll like this):
 1. At age 3 he entered into a tournament against 10 year olds and won.
 2. At age 11, he for the first time legitimately beat his father, who was at the time an amateur golfer. His father hasn’t beaten him since.
 3. He owns the lowest career scoring average in PGA Tour history
 4. He has amassed the most career earnings of any player in PGA Tour history (even after inflation is considered).
 5. Woods is the only player to have won all four professional major championships in a row, accomplishing the feat in the 2000-2001 seasons. This feat became known as the "Tiger Slam".
 6. Woods set the all-time record for most consecutive cuts made, with 142 with the streak ending on May 13, 2005. The streak started in 1998, he set the record at the 2003 Tour Championship with 114 (passing Byron Nelson's previous record of 113 and Jack Nicklaus at 105). Many consider this to be one of the most remarkable golf accomplishments of all time. At the time, the next longest streak by any other player was usually only in the 10's or 20's.
 7. He is the highest paid professional athlete in the world making an estimated average of 100 million in 2010.

So why would Tiger risk everything by changing his swing? When asked this in an interview he said simply, “To become better.” Then asked, “And then to change it again a few years later?” He responds, “To become even better.” Tiger woods is an extraordinary golfer. One can say he seemed to have found a particularly triumphant groove. In other words, a triumphant comfort zone. Though he was flourishing, it was nevertheless a comfort zone and he recognized the danger in that. Even amidst his success and his wins, he noticed if he didn’t change something soon he could potentially stunt his growth as a golfer. Golf is his life. His passion and dedication for it is only one of many things that set him apart from other golfers. The temporary set backs, the criticism, the lost matches, the pain, the time loss from changing his swing are minor in comparison to the soon to be. It’s amazing that even he still found his victorious and profitable comfort zone to be limiting and insignificant when compared to what it could keep him from achieving.

What about us? If Jesus is my golf, do I carry the same passion about Him as Tiger has about golf? Tiger is willing to endure the discomfort “to become better,” do I?
A few scriptures come to mind: 
2 Corinthians 12:9 -"My grace is sufficient enough for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness"
Our weakness may be our fear… Our fear of stepping out of the comfort zone we’ve built and placed ourselves in the middle of. Our fear of taking a leap of faith. Our fear of the simple, yet astounding act of doing something we’ve never done before. Our fear of breaking routine. Our fear of what we may see by going to a third world country. Even though our fear is our weakness, God’s grace is sufficient, and His power is demonstrated only through the outworking of our weakness, or our fear.
1 Corinthians 9:24-25 "Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever."
My life: I’m “in it to win it.” Others are merely “in it.” What others won’t do, I want to do. What others can’t do, I want to help them do. Where it’s too uncomfortable for others to go, I want to go. If stepping out of my comfort zone results in a heavenly prize that lasts forever then count me in.
Tiger's passion and commitment encourages me. He understands that only through pain can relief come, and us who believe can find confidence in the fact that there’s no better relief than from God.  I’ll take a leap of faith even if it means the landing may hurt a tad because at least I’ve increased my faith.  I’ll do something I’ve never done before because the possibility of the greatest experience of my life far exceeds the certainty of boredom within doing the already done.  I’ll break routine even if it causes a little anxiety because I’m tired of a steady level of mediocre performance. And finally, I’ll break out of my comfort zone even if it means I might not ever be the same again because, to say the least, I want to be better. I believe the better I am at serving God, the better I can be used by God to do good. I want to be better at doing good. For me, it is that simple. I think we can all admit we’d like to be better. Lets take a page out of Tiger's book and adopt his passion and commitment and apply it toward a life fixed on Jesus and then watch the insurmountable growth and favor occur in our life.

"A person stuck in a comfort zone is like stagnant water in a bucket, the longer he sits the unhealthier he gets" - Eric Dill