breathless but strengthene

Our intern housing, common area, and classroom are up the hill from our main complex area (where our staff housing and offices are). The walk up the hill always gets me way out of breath, and today was no exception. I like to blame it on the altitude. (Our main complex area is over a mile above sea level--higher than Denver!) It has nothing to do with the fact I'm out of shape. Nothing!

I caught my breath and started teaching my first Introduction to World Missions class. I normally start teaching in January, but with Niel and I being in the States in February and March, I put off starting my classes until the second term (which started this week). And since we didn't have interns last year, this was my first intern class since November 2005. I didn't realize how much I missed it until I was doing it...

With 11 students, discussion came naturally and easily, and was a breath of fresh air. Time went by quickly and before I knew it, I was walking back down the hill to my office.

During my walk down, I was reminded of our staff meeting. This week, we began a series about playing to your strengths (Trombone Player Wanted). It is unique and innovative, and profoundly insightful. My biggest "light bulb moment" was hearing that, contrary to popular belief, our strengths are not necessarily what we are good at. Our strengths are those activities that make us feel strong. That definition largely changes my perspective on things. I can now determine my strengths by those things which strengthen and energize me, which I look forward to, and which naturally hold my interest.

Teaching my missions class, I realized today, is a strength of mine. I went up the hill feeling breathless and came down feeling strengthened...