What Keeps You Up at Night?

Margaret —  June 22, 2015 — 8 Comments

What Keeps You Up at Night?

I’m thrilled you’re back and joining us as we are Scouting the Divine in this summer online Bible study. This week, we’re spending more time with Lynne, the shepherdess, in order to understand the hundreds of sheep, shepherd, and flock references throughout the Bible.

One of the most inspiring books on shepherding is Philip Keller’s A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23. He observes that when the psalmist pens this praise: “He makes me lie down...” (Psalm 23:2), it speaks to the power of the shepherd in the lives of the sheep.

To lie down is to rest, surrender, relax. To let worries and anxieties go. To stop running, striving, searching, seeking.

To trust that the one who hung the stars, holds you.

But here’s what’s fascinating! According to shepherd Philip Keller, there are four requirements that need to be met before sheep will lie down: Continue Reading...

9 Don’t Miss Details from Pixar’s Inside Out

Yesterday I shared how Inside Out Busts Through 5 Myths of Your Emotions: Joy, Anger, Sadness, Sorrow, Disgust.

The movie is still dancing in my mind.

I couldn’t help but watch Inside Out through the lenses of all I’ve learned through researching joy and happiness for Fight Back With Joy.

Here are 10 details of Inside Out I adored: Continue Reading...

Joy from Disney Pixar Inside Out

I was so excited about the release of Inside Out, I dressed up as Joy for Denver Comic Con weeks ago. Nobody knew who I was. I didn’t mind. After all, I was Joy.

Five years in the making, Inside Out unfolds in the mind of an 11-year-old Riley, whose faces a crisis when her family uproots her from small-town Minnesota to move to San Francisco.

The snafus that follow—a lost moving truck, a sketchy start-up, a wincing-oh-so-painful first day of school, and a sports try-out turned disaster—transform the happy-go-lucky pre-teen into a short-tempered, angry tweener, with the a bad case of the G-pains, the growing pain, that occur whenever one waves buh-bye to a life built, loved, known.

Never content with a shallow story, the writer-director Pete Docter (Up) digs deep into the anthropomorphized feelings lodged in Riley’s mind.

Disney Inside Out

Joy = Amy Poehler = cast perfection = group leader

Disgust = Mindy Kaling = can you hear “Mindy” saying "Ew!"?

Fear = Bill Hader = a skittish, shy character until he’s afraid

Anger = Lewis Black = no one could blow their hat better

Sadness = Phyllis Smith = Office fans will adore = brilliant performance

The opening of the film feels like being thrust into a Psychology 300 course. An exposition and information dump.

Before you can navigate Riley’s emotional world (or your own) there’s much to learn.

Riley’s personality is represented and shaped by a series of island including Family, Honesty, Goofy, and Hockey. Her mind is filled with a Long Term Memory facility (inspired by a real Jelly Belly candy factory). Imagination land is magical place of possibilities. Dreams are scripted and filmed in a mini-Hollywood studio ironically not named DreamWorks.

Not all is light and fluffy. Abstract thinking can flatten and distort anyone who enters. The Subconscious is a dark place dreams become nightmares.

All this may seem random and hard to follow for those of us who managed to graduate from college without taking Psychology (or at least showing up to class).

Keep watching. Once your mind is stuffed with the necessary details, Pixar kicks the plot into second gear as Joy goes on an unforgettable journey.

Without spoiling the movie, here are 5 Myths Inside Out exposes about our emotions. Continue Reading...

One of the Biggest Lies the Church Has Taught You

Throughout Scripture, Jesus uses natural wonders to explain supernatural truths. From fruitless figs  and buzzing bees to choking weeds and lost sheep, it’s no secret that the Bible is steeped in an agrarian culture.

Now I never used to think about sheep very much. Or shepherds for that matter. But then I met someone who changed all of that. You’ll meet Lynne the Shepherdess in your homework during the online Scouting the Divine Summer Bible Study this week.

Ever since my encounter with Lynne, I’ve read everything I can get my hands on the subject. The Bible contains almost 700 references to sheep, shepherds and flocks. God not only uses these wooly creatures to reveal truths about himself and draw people into a closer relationship with Him.

One of the great mistruths taught in the church is that sheep are dumb. This teaching has almost done more harm to understanding the character of God and who He has created us to be than any other.

Think about that common fallacy: Sheep are dumb.

First, it’s not true. Sheep can be trained much like dogs and other pets using clicker training. Check out this YouTube video. Continue Reading...

Bored Reading the Bible? Try this.

On far too many days I read the Bible and don’t connect. It feels flat. Cold. Distant. The pages may contain timeless tales, but they feel boring. Flat. Stiff. They feel written endless miles away, in distant cultures, far off lands, a way of life I can’t relate to no matter how I try.

Some days I slam the book shut, hoping, praying the next time will be better. Continue Reading...