The Struggle To Maintain A Healthy Lifestyle and Ministry

As part of my work in spiritual direction, my director has asked me to do a better job of keeping boundaries and having clear breaks from the parish. As a result of this counsel, I am no longer going to be receiving work emails on my iPhone or Ipad. I had an experience this past week which makes me realize this is a wise plan. Some of the emails that come in are very mean-spirited and lacking charity. I wish I could brag about having such tough skin that things like that don’t bother me, but the truth is they do. We are supposed to be holding ourselves to Christian principles when it comes to communication and interaction with one another. A lot of people completely tune this out.

I had a conversation with my dad today and told him how much I admired him because he was always able to leave work at work and be present to his family when he had  time off. As much as I like technology I am beginning to see that without some guidelines and moral principals, it has the power to seriously undermine any kind of state of good health and well-being. This is part of the reason I also changed my cell phone number. I had given the number out to way too many people and it was ringing and buzzing constantly throughout the day. That is now a thing of the past.

I am totally aware that many people struggle with this issue, especially parents. They have incredibly busy schedules with their marriages, family, and work. We all have to try and give ourselves permission to take care of ourselves and have quiet and “down time” from all the busy things in life. I am realizing more and more that you can’t rely on others to take care of yourself. I have actually been making great strides spiritually in this area of my life and I am grateful for all the grace God is giving me.  There is nothing too, like a little advice from one’s parents 🙂 And I didn’t even have to ask for it!

Bambi Is Safe From The Northrop Family

We arrived home yesterday after an unsuccessful hunting trip. My brother sent me a report from the Washington State Department of Wildlife indicating this should be a record year with the deer counts of bucks being higher than many years past. We actually didn’t see that many deer and wondered how accurate the report was. It looks like those who were praying for Bambi won out this year. 🙂

It was still fun to have a few days with my dad and brother. My dad brought his new boat up to fish on Lake Bonaparte. The fishing was really slow but I sure like the new boat. I found a picture online although my dad’s boat is black and silver.

I decided to take the North Cascades Hwy to get to Tonaskat which was 20 miles below our camp area. That was my first trip and it was very scenic. I had brought my camera to take pictures along the way but because I was three and a half hours late I didn’t take any. I’ll have to travel that way again sometime soon.

On the way home we did stop at Dry Falls and take a few pictures.

My new Iphone 5 has a panorama feature which allows you to move in a circle and it stitches the photos together. Here is one shot with my brother Joe.

Lastly, we ate at the lodge a couple of times and I really liked the nature photographs that were hanging on the wall. The first day, the artist who took the pictures stopped in. His name is James T. Jones and he is from Stanwood, WA. I ended up buying a neat picture of a cougar to hang in my office. James’ website is The photo below is a little blurry because the photograph is in glass and I didn’t want to take it out.