August 22, 2013

The Window of Opportunity

When you look out a window, what do you see? Obviously that depends on what is out there, right? Can you see beyond that? Not just what is out there but even more so, what could be out there? 
I would say I am a optimistic realist. I see the glass not as half full or half empty but for what it really is and the possibility of what it can become. At least that is what I want. That's not easy, especially if, like me, you have seen plenty of failures,  but...
To live like Jesus, you have to live with possibility.
This is the faith factor of living: You see the possibilities in life because you have faith. The scripture reads, “Everything is possible for one who believes” (NIV).
I believe that we should be the most innovative and creative people on the planet because all things are possible. When you have faith, it expands your horizon. You can be much more creative and innovative.
When you have unbelief, it limits your life and even the lives of others to some degree.
The more you trust God, build relationships and trust with people in your life, the more limitless your possibilities become for your family, your career and for your life!
Don't be afraid to dream big dreams and pursue those dreams with passion. Everyday there are new windows of opportunity. Can you see them?
Things to ponder,
In what area or areas of our lives are we limited by our unbelief?
What needs changing in our lives?   

 What are we waiting for?

August 14, 2013

How Rude!

I'll admit I freely operate in the spiritual gift of sarcasm but I try very hard not to use it as a weapon against others. (Note; There is no spiritual gift of sarcasm)  Sadly, civility has become a counter culture value in our society. Have noticed how uncivil our culture has become?  People are just flat out rude today. They’re not polite to each other. They’re not civil with each other. Just log on to your Facebook or Twitter account and scroll down.
Today our nation is becoming more pluralized, we have more people coming in from different perspectives, different places and I think that can be a very good thing.
But we need civility in our culture so we can disagree without being disagreeable.
Why should we want that? Because Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.” Not the people who create conflict and division but the peacemakers, the bridge builders.
One of the most famous quotes of Jesus is found in Matthew 7:12: “In everything, do to others what you would have them do to you”  It’s called the Golden Rule. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. The word for that is “civility.” The opposite of rude.

Civility is just treating other people the way you’d like to be treated, even if you disagree with them — even if they’re flat-out, dead wrong, which they usually are! (That's my joke)
Even if they’re fighting against you, you and I treat them the way we would like to be treated. That’s civility.

I am committing to be a peacemaker today and love people today, even if they disagree with me.       
How about you?

August 08, 2013

What This Old Dump Truck Taught Me

What's this old dump truck have to do with this latest blog post? My last blog post was about slowing down in life and taking time to enjoy the little things. I think that is a very healthy and even fun thing to do for your life. This post is also about having fun. It’s also about giving. Stay with me on this because it’s very important. Let tell you a little story first.
My father was a bit older when I was born, he was 51 years old. His health was deteriorating when he was about 60, so he took an earlier retirement and was able to go on disability.  I found out later that one of the main reasons he quit was to be able to spend more time with me. I was about 10 years old at the time. I am so thankful he did that. He knew that quitting his job meant sacrificing things and pinching some pennies but he was willing to do it.
One day an acquaintance approached my father. This man had numerous problems and mental issues and always seemed to be struggling to make ends meet. He needed cash for new tires for his dump truck. It was a piece of junk too. Old and rundown. My father gave him the money for tires.
"Dad, that guy has got problems, why did you give him money?'' I asked, knowing things were tight for us.
“He needs it,” my father said. “When someone asks for help, it’s not for us to judge. That’s for someone else. We should help as many people as we can, as often as we can.”
I didn’t fully understand it at the time – we really did need that money! But I get it now. My dad understood something very deep.
Giving is like having fun, in that it’s an inelastic part of living well and feeling good about yourself.
You can’t wait until you have “enough” money (or other things) to start giving to others.
In fact, when you’re feeling strapped might be the most important time to remember why giving is good for you.
There are lots of good reasons to give. Love is giving. God is a giver. Aside from often being “the right thing to do,” giving is healthy for us, it makes us feel good about ourselves, which helps us become our best selves. Giving is like eating and sleeping. It’s not something we should do when we can. It’s something we must do.
Think about everything you receive from others in one day. That might give you an idea of how necessary giving is in one form or another. Now think about what you can give back. Granted, it might not be “much,” but you have something you can give.
Whether it’s your time, or your ear, or food, or money, or whatever, give something to somebody in need when you’re done reading this post.  It may not be tires for an old dump truck but there will always be opportunities. Make giving a consistent part of your lifestyle, and have fun doing it!