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While January is sort of a let-down month for some people, I, personally, find it to be one of my favorite times of the year.
With all of the hopes and possibilities that lie before me, I experience it to be quite energizing!
Since, over the last several years, this has paired up with the beginning of the 16-week marathon training plans I began each January, I need all the energy I can get.
This year, however, I chose to take on a different kind of “marathon training plan.”
Rather than physically train in order to run a marathon, I decided to register at the beginning of January for a 15-week intensive online course focused on “Digital and Collaborative Teaching and Learning.”
Plus, just to make sure I wanted to commit myself to such an undertaking (one in which I would have never imagined enrolling… kind of like when I signed up for my first marathon), I took a free, one-week online course on “Transforming Digital Learning” and loved it.
In other words, this year, I decided (God called me) to take on the challenge of 16 weeks of intense sitting (or standing) in front of my laptop and persevering through each and every mental “workout” (homework assignment) so that I could become better equipped to serve in the ministry (vocational marathon) to which God has called me… despite the numerous hours I had already spent in front of my screen due to COVID!
So how is my training going as I’m about to enter week 7 (almost halfway done)?
My brain and body are exhausted, but I am loving the experience every step of the way… most of the time!
As a result of taking the class, I have found some new favorite ministry tools and resources, and wanted to share 4 of them with you:
Audacity: a free, easy-to-use, multi-track audio editor and recorder.
Canva: featuring a SUPER user-friendly interface, this free resource allows you to create flyers, social media posts, videos, cards, presentations, photo collages, and more.
Padlet: an online digital bulletin board (and so much more!)
OpenShot: a free, open-source, easy-to-use video editor.
And, another result of participating in my online course “marathon training program” is that, despite my best efforts, I’ve found myself having to be even more mindful of my screen time and lack of movement (again, COVID had already made that challenging enough).
Here are some resources that have helped me address both of these health challenges:
Again, since there are so many wonderful tools and resources available for us to use in our various ministries (whether it is serving in churches, nonprofits, as chaplains, or something else), I hope that one or two of these will be helpful for you.
Please take a moment and share your favorites via the Padlet link!
Peace be with you wherever your ministry takes you!
Rev. Dr. Karen Webster is co-founder and executive director of the Healthy Seminarians-Healthy Church Initiative, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and validated ministry of Trinity Presbytery (SC). In addition to being an ordained PC(USA) pastor, Karen is certified as an Exercise Physiologist, Nutrition Specialist, and Health and Wellness Coach.
This post originally appeared on www.healthyseminarians-healthychurch.org/.