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Walking with Purpose (Hardcover)

Introduction

If you picked up this book hoping to learn how to walk with purpose from someone who has completely figured out life, I might disappoint you a little. If you want to listen to someone whose decisions are always wise and well thought out, then my decision to add a fifty-pound puppy to our already busy family mix might rule me out as a candidate. Let me digress for a moment and just say that a fifty-pound puppy is a very large animal. When you already have seven children and all the paraphernalia that accompanies them, a wise choice would be a smaller creature. Before you judge me, may I say that I actually meant to buy a much smaller dog. And I thought I had. But when I went for my first vet visit, I was told that we had a very large puppy. “Oh, no,” I assured her. “She’s not going to be large. She’s only going to come up to my knee. That’s why I picked this breed.” The vet looked at me quizzically, and asked if I had seen the parents and grandparents of our puppy. I had not, but I pointed out that her ancestors were standard poodles, therefore small. She quickly corrected me by showing me a photo of a standard poodle, which is actually quite large. But by this point, Bailey the puppy was a member of the family, and I could hardly cause my children untold trauma by returning her to the breeder.

One would think that this would have taught me the very important lesson of tending to details—every detail, or you never know what might happen. But then a storm hit our city, and we lost electricity for more than a week. This meant that we didn’t have water—we couldn’t flush toilets, take a shower, or otherwise enjoy life. In the midst of this, Bailey got an ear infection, and her ears needed to be diligently treated with ointment twice a day and then dutifully massaged. And in my defense, this is what I did. And I was very proud of myself, since I find it hard to remember to keep giving my children their antibiotics all the way to the very end of the dose. But the devil is in the details, and after five days of commenting that she seemed to be getting worse, not better, and seeing her continually shaking her head like a maniac, I realized that I had been using superglue instead of antibiotic ointment. Bailey survived the ordeal, but whenever she won’t come when we call her, the kids just look at me with raised eyebrows.

I struggle with getting my act together, just like you do. We all experience some days that are like the sweet spot on the tennis racket. We wake up in a good mood after a full night’s sleep, everyone in the family eats well, we cross off everything on our to-do lists, and no major crisis occurs. But more often than not, life doesn’t go that smoothly.

There are a lot of days when we don’t get enough sleep. We eat what’s left on our children’s plates. We overschedule ourselves, then rush around and arrive late. Kids have dirty diapers just when we need to walk out the door. Money is tight. Loved ones get cancer. Spouses are unfaithful. All these circumstances can tempt us to say, “I’ll start exploring how God wants me to be living the day things slow down and are a little more under control.”

I want to encourage you not to wait for that day. Instead, I’d like you to see today as the perfect time to begin walking with purpose. Why? Because what you are experiencing is real life. We may occasionally have times when things are perfectly under control, but we need to learn how to walk with purpose regardless of our circumstances. Each season of life carries with it chaos and troubles. If a calm schedule is the prerequisite for purposeful, peaceful living, we will never achieve it. Whether you find yourself in a period of calm or chaos, why not join me as, together, we begin to walk with purpose?

Walking with Purpose (Hardcover)

by Lisa Brenninkmeyer

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Walking with Purpose (Hardcover)

by Lisa Brenninkmeyer

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