I like checkpoints. Whenever I do things I like to have checkpoints along the way. On any trip I take I give myself checkpoints every hour. I know that if I can make it to that next checkpoint then I can keep going. I did this with school. I knew that if I could get to spring break then the rest of the semester would go smoothly.

If I can get to this point, then I know things will be okay and I can keep going.

I still have those checkpoints today. They’re different and on a weekly basis instead of semester basis but they’re still there.

I know that if things are crazy, all I have to do is make it through Wednesday and then they’ll start to calm down.

I know that if I’m a little frustrated, all I have to do is make it to Sunday night and then I’ll be reminded why I do what I do.

I know that if I need dude time, all I have to do is make it until Tuesday at 12:30 and then it’s time for Man Lunch Tuesday.

About five or six weeks ago I had lunch with our middle school intern and our student ministries worship guy. We’re all pretty close and it just randomly happened. We went to this barbecue place just because the worship guy had seen something on tv about them that morning. We got there and found out that they had this giant feast of a meal on special on Tuesdays for something like $22.

We could feast for $8 a person.

So we did.

We ate a ton of fantastic barbecue, had an awesome waitress, and just overall had a great time. We liked it so much that we vowed that Tuesday will forever be known as Man Lunch Tuesday. In the last five weeks it’s evolved from “we’re going to eat here every week” to “let’s take Man Lunch Tuesday around town and eat a lot of different things that are manly.” The middle school intern’s even growing a beard for it and wore a flannel shirt to make it more manly yesterday (I’m not even making this up).

In the past three weeks we’ve went to an old school drive-in that was cash only where we all bought corn dogs, a barbecue place that was on Man Vs Food, and a place with maybe the best burger I’ve ever eaten.

Man Lunch Tuesday is something that I can count on to pick me up. If I’m having a rough week it makes it more tolerable. If I’m having a great week it makes it even better. No matter what, it boosts me up.

I’ve learned that these type of checkpoints are probably the most important type to have. Life sucks. Crappy things happen every single day of the week and there’s nothing we can do to change that. We’ve got to give ourselves chances to take a step back, laugh, and not take ourselves too seriously. I guarantee you that I’m not taking myself seriously while I eat a delicious burger and blast Changes by Tupac with two other 20-something white guys. I’m not worrying about all of the things that stress me out. I’m smiling and laughing and enjoying life.

Is there something you do every week, or every other week at the least, that you know will pick you up and boost your spirits? Is there someone or something that you know you can go and talk to or go and experience that you know will make you smile and forget about all of the crap in your life? If the answer is no, I have to ask you why? Do you not make time for it? Do you not have those people in your life? If you don’t, why don’t you?

We have to smile. We have to laugh. And we have to do stupid things that everyone else doesn’t understand.

For us to stay healthy, and for us not to go insane, we have to have times where we don’t take ourselves seriously.

My time to do that is Man Lunch Tuesday.

What’s yours?