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Showing posts from October, 2013

"Knowing the future is difficult; controlling the future is impossible."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential(p. 232). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

I want to, though, don’t you?I mean, I am 65+ and I really want to control my future.I want to feel that I am secure and that everything is going to be great.That would be great but it is impossible.I can’t control my future and I can’t even know what it is going to be like.
But John goes on and says that “Knowing today is essential; controlling today is possible.”Today is all I have to work with, tomorrow I give to God.But to emphasize, I do have today.I have the potential to still make choices of how I am going to live each day.
I am also reading a book by Bill Hybels called, The Power of a Whisper: Hearing God,Having the Guts to Respond.And on page 79 he says, “Many of God’s whispers are offered to save us from difficulties and pain that we don’t have the wisdom or maturity to foresee.”All we have to do is to choose to do…

"When you enjoy your life, the lines between work and play begin to blur."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Themand Reach Your Potential (pp. 203-204). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

Do you enjoy your life?On my other blog, Bill’s Front Porch,I’m dealing with the subject of happiness.  Today I said, “The accepted idea of happiness is having the right circumstances. But God’s way to happiness is having the right attitude.”So I ask again, “Do you enjoy your life?”
Now John says here that if you do, then the lines between your work and your play begin to blur.You see, it is an attitude thing.I chose to enjoy my life.It is a choice.
I love reading the Psalms in the Old Testament.Usually the writer starts with a lament, a bad attitude but as he changes his focus it becomes a praise.His focus changes his attitude.He has control over his attitude and so do you.
Yes, life can be tough.Yes there may be some real problems at work but you can see work as a priviledge and the problems as opportunities to make …

"The best way to make a sluggish mind active is to disturb its routine."

"Good ideas are everywhere, but it's hard to see them when you won't look outside of your box."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book,The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential (pp. 202-203). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

So many times it is in a crisis that we come up with a good idea.Now we may be able to avert the crisis by stopping and looking outside the box before we have to but we don't.
It is also important to see that the only way many problems can be solved is by looking outside the box.That is where frustration comes when one won’t look outside and thus can’t solve their problem.
What problem are you in the midst of right now?How are you striving to solve it?Are you frustrated, really frustrated because you can’t solve it?Maybe you have never looked outside the box before and you need help.
One thing I have done is to set down with a note pad and put 1-10 on the side and come up with 10 different options.Some that make since and some that don’t.I just would be creative and then go from there.
Also I try to get around people …

"Do what you love because it will give you energy."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential (p. 189). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

I love all sports but I really love baseball.On every bat there is this sweet spot. The goal of the batter to hit the ball thrown by the pitcher on the bat’s sweet spot and if he does the ball will go far. The same is true in golf.If the golfer hits the golf ball on his golf club’s sweet spot then the ball will go far.
The same is true of each one of us.We have a sweet spot in which we will give maximum effort in our work.Now, many people work hard and at the end of their day, they are worn out, they are de-energized.But if they work in their sweet spot then they are energized by what they are doing.You’ve seen people like that haven’t you?They love doing what they are doing.
Now your sweet spot is doing something that you love to do, you have a passion to do, that fits your abilities, your personality and your experience.…

"We have attempted to silence Jesus by speaking for Him rather than letting Him speak for Himself."

A thought by Erwin Raphael McManus (2003-09-04) from his book, Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul(Kindle Locations 3509-3510). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.

I started this year to learn more about Jesus.I wanted to see how He responded to life’s situations, to seehow He handled the difficulties of life, to see what He stood for and what He was against.I wanted to see what He said not what other people thought He said.So I am now on my 11th time through the four Gospels found at the beginning of the New Testament. They are four books from four different writers who shared His life and His words.If you have a certain type of Bible His words are in red.
What is Jesus like to you?Did you get your thoughts from someone else’s views or from His words?So many times our view of things in life is through what other people say.People are very important in my view of life.I learn so much from other people.But people’s view must go through where they come from, their culture, their family, their …

"The skills that got you here are probably not the skills that will get you there."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential(p. 184). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

Wow, have I ever found that to be true. What skills I need now as a writer and a retiree are totally different from when I was a church planter/pastor.All the skills I need to be Margaret’s husband change all the time and the fact that I am a parent of adults and also a grandparent to three awesome young ladies means it is imperative that I keep growing, i need new skills.
The fact that I am retired is totally different to when I was working 50 – 60 hours a week with people needing me on a daily basis. I need to constantly keep growing.
What about you?Are you one of those who believe that you know all that you need to know? That you have all the answers because there are no more questions you have to have answered.  Are you one of those who have never picked up a book since you graduated from high school or even college?
As J…

"When you want something you have never had, you must do something you've never done to get it."

A thought by John C. Maxwell, (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential(p. 179). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

Margaret and I and our son, Brett and his family go to a very exciting church.We have in a way been connected to Mosaic for almost 15 years.Brett and his wife met at Mosaic over ten years ago when they were meeting in downtown LA in the singer Prince’s nightclub.Those were exciting days for Mosaic.We were living in Las Vegas at the time and we would take Sunday breaks from our church and if we came to LA we would go to Mosaic for at least one of our multiple churches we visited.We met with them in multiple settings.It is now exciting to be a part of this great church every weekend.
A year ago they made a major change.Instead of meeting in multiple sites they started meeting in an existing church building on the corner of Hollywood and La Brea and they have exploded.They were doing great in multiple sites as so many church…

"The difference between where we are and where we want to be is created by the changes we are willing to make in our lives."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential(p. 179). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

So many people are so very afraid to change.They just can’t handle change so they live with whatever life gives them.That can be a very frustrating, unfulfilling life.
What are you accepting as a way of life because you are afraid to change?Maybe you are working under an unpleaseable boss and you are miserable. Maybe it is a dysfunctional environment but you are afraid to quit and look for something better.Maybe you need to confront your boss.Maybe he doesn’t realize what he is doing and there needs to be some changes.Of course that is a risk but it just might be worth the risk.
Maybe it’s your marriage. You see that you both are growing a part.There is no life, no romance, no involvement and maybe no love. But you are afraid to do anything about it.There is a risk in upsetting the status quo.It might make it worse but it al…

"I haven't learned how to arrive; I've just learned how to keep going."

A thought by John C Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential (p. 168). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

A year ago Brett, my son, Margaret, my wife and I were on the road, between Seminole, Florida and Pasadena, California with two cars and a U-Haul truck.We left Florida on Wednesday and arrived in California on Sunday.Now did our life stop because we finally made it to California?No it kept on going just in a new location.
It is so easy to set out before us a goal and when we get it we start settling in and thinking that because we have arrived then we are all set to just live.For some that is retirement.They are so looking forward to that day that they no longer have to go work not realizing that there is still more to be done even in retirement.Life is to be lived all the way to death and then there is more to be done even in eternity.
Even though I have retired and I am now living in California there is still so much more …

"Even in a fallen world, wisdom sees the good..."

A thought by Erwin Raphael McManus (2003-09-04) from his book, Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul (Kindle Location 3442). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.

James over in the first part of his letter in the New Testament says that if any person lacks wisdom then ask God.  There is so much that we have access to that is from God and we can ask Him for it.Wisdom is a very important thing He wants us to have.
Now this quote from Erwin is just part of it, "Even in a fallen world, wisdom sees the good...not just the good that is or that must be done, but the good that will come through choices made. This distinct view of reality known as wisdom is nothing less than seeing life from God's vantage point."And He wants us to have that but we need to ask.
Now wisdom sees good in all things.Not that all things in themselves are good but wisdom is the opportunity to see the good that comes from wise decisions.God wants you to see the good that will come from your choices.He also wants yo…

"Life begins at the end of our comfort zone. We go there by stretching."

A thought by John C Maxwell,. (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential (p. 157). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

For many that is hard to understand.The last time they stretched was when they got married.That was a great enough risk for them.But the truth is that stretch was one of the best things I ever did in life. It will be 39 years of marriage on November 9th. And life truly did begin when Margaret said, “I do”.
Another stretch happened when we had our kids.It has been thirty plus years with Brett and Stef in our lives.A lot of ups and downs but without a doubt it has been well worth the stretch.I have counted it a great privilege to be a parent and now a grandparent.
Another stretch happened when I accepted the call to full time ministry.It was a stretch for me to be a staff minister and then to be a church planter.It is so great to get connected on Facebook to those who have been a part of the different assignments that I had…

"Individuals who lack principles and passion become beige people."

A thought by John C. Maxwell, (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential (p. 149). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

Now I understand the age in which we live.We don’t want to show up people, to make them feel bad.I understand that also from a Christian’s point of view but I also understand this matter of living with principles and passion.
Margaret and I live in a great apartment on the Rose Bowl Parade Street, Colorado Bl. in Pasadena, California.Well, Pasadena has a new No Smoking Law that says that smoking is not allowed in or outside any of our apartments.So we had to sign and turn in a paper that said that we understood the new law.Somewhere some person had a desire to live a healthy life so they set out to make a law that would protect them from getting cancer from cigarette smoke and they had the passion and the principle to make it happen and I signed the paper.Yes it will not be something that someone who smokes likes but it m…

"In all of our relationships we are either plusses or minuses in the lives of others."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential (p. 148). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

There seems to be a choice in there, doesn’t there?I have the choice of building up or tearing down and it starts inside of me.
Think of your relationships, how are you doing?Think of your family, are you building them up, feeding into their lives, making them better people or are you constantly tearing them down?Is there any person out there who is a better person because of you?I sure hope so.I really do.
Now the key is what is inside of you.Are you a person of moral character?Does who you really are matter to you?If it does then you have the potential to make a real difference in this world.You see people are what really matters.Nothing else lasts, just people.Everything else you work toward building will one day go away.
I just spent a weekend with Margaret, my wife, Brett my son and his family, Marissa, Ashlyn, Addison …

"It's one short step from 'why me' to 'woe is me.'"

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential(p. 134). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

Do you know those places where you can’t go but temptation draws you to?One of mine is Dunkin Donuts.I love donuts.The truth of the connectedness of people to each other is realized in my families love for donuts.I take the blame, it is my fault.
But the “why me” approach to life is another area that I can’t visit.I can’t let that thought stay in my mind for a moment because of what it will lead to in my emotional and spiritual life.I had to come to grips at a period of my life that the “why me” leads to depression and kills my faith and ability to grow.It leads me to a dark place inside of me instead of hope.
Now that is me.Some of you have no temptation of donuts and maybe you are a naturally positive person but I also know that this area is a danger zone for many of you.You just can’t go there in your life.
Listen, what yo…

"We need to train ourselves to fight for positive changes."

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2012-10-02) from his book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential(p. 133). Center Street. Kindle Edition.

Notice he said positive changes.You may be fighting for your mate to change to your way of thinking instead of fighting for a positive change in the relationship.
So how do we do that? John then said, “By remembering that our choices will lead to either the pain of self-discipline or the pain of regret. I’d rather live with the pain of self-discipline and reap the positive rewards than live with the pain of regret, which is something that can create a deep and continual ache within us.”
Self-discipline isn’t usually the easy way out.It takes discipline to stop spouting your side and start to listen to what they are saying and striving to hear their side.Maybe having some understanding in where they are coming from will be a step in the right direction.It may be hard to not jump in and push your way of thinking and what they …