Monday, May 26, 2008

The Blueprint for Happiness

Do you want to be a happy person? Live God's way. Do you want to be an unhappy person? Live your own way.
Read the full article here

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Catching Up

Where in the world have I been?
Well, another week of travel happened this past week. Tuesday through Thursday was spent in the Salt Lake City UT area. Friday was spent at home while our radon evacuation system was installed. Please check your radon level if you have not done so.
In my quiet times I transitioned from Ruth to 1 Samuel to 2 Samuel in the Old Testament. Here are some thoughts:
  • John 6:43 states that no one can come to Jesus unless the Father draws him. This is a very sobering passage to me and really make me think about what I believe related to election.
  • A gentle answer turns away wrath, a harsh word stirs up anger ~ Proverbs 15:1
  • In John 7 men did not understand Jesus or who he was; Jesus pointed people to God the Father
  • In John 8 there is a woman who was caught in adultery, Jesus taught that all have sinned; Jesus forgave her and challenged her to sin no more
  • 1 Samuel 18:5 Saul tasked David, David accomplished his task well, Saul promoted David. This illustrates the point of doing your work well before expecting a promotion.
  • 1 Samuel 19:1 illustrates that close personal relationships are stronger than other formal structures like boss-employee or father-son
  • John 8:31 states that a person must hold to Jesus' teaching to be a true disciple
  • John 9:15 contains a simple testimony: He put mud on my eyes, I washed them like He told me to, and now I can see
  • Proverbs 15:20 is true of my son Darren; a wise son brings joy to his father

Saturday, May 10, 2008

A Week of Travel

This past week (Monday through Friday) was spent in southern California on business. As a result my time in Scripture was less than normal. Here are a few thoughts:
  • In Judges 15 the Spirit of God came upon Sampson with such power he killed 1000 men with a donkey jawbone. Then in Judges 16 the details of Sampson’s demise are detailed as he becomes a victim of “love”
  • In John 2 Jesus performs his first miracle by turning water into wine. I thought it an interesting statement when it says that Jesus did not entrust himself to men because he knew them.
  • Jesus personally teaches Nicodemus to believe in Him and to have eternal life (John 3)
  • Judges 19:17 “Where are you going? Where did you come from?” How would you answer?
  • Judges 20 illustrates how one act of violence can cause such great damage
  • Jesus spent time with his disciples and baptized people (John 3:22)
  • Proverbs 14:23 states that hard work brings profit and mere talk leads to poverty
Also this week I transitioned from the book of Judges to the book of Ruth in my Old Testament reading.

Blessings to you.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

A Focus on God and Jesus

This past week I spent a couple of days in Indianapolis at Rolls Royce where they manufacture the engine for the Global Hawk air vehicle.

The following observations are from my time in Scripture this week:
  • In Judges 6 God used the weakest and least to accomplish his work; Gideon tested the Lord with a fleece
  • In Judges 7 God reduced the fighting men with Gideon from 32,000 to 10,000 to 300 and then Gideon’s first thought was to worship God
  • Simon was made to literally carry the cross of Jesus (Luke 23:26)
  • In Luke 24 even Peter, one of the disciples, went away from the empty tomb wondering what had happened
  • When does you heart burn within you? (Luke 24:32)
  • Jesus opened their minds so they could understand Scripture (Luke 24:45)
  • John came as a witness to the Life, Word, Jesus (John 1)
  • In John 1 Jesus starts calling his disciples
  • A prudent man thinks about his steps; a wise man fears God and shuns evil (Proverbs 14:15-16)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Some Important Principles of Living

From my Scripture reading this week:
  • Giving to the poor and restoring fraud saved Zaccheus according to Jesus in Luke 19
  • Hope deferred makes the heart sick, a longing fulfilled is the tree of life (Proverbs 13:12)
  • The teaching of the wise is the fountain of life (Proverbs 13:14)
  • In Joshua 21:45 it states that not one of the Lord’s promises to Israel failed; every one was fulfilled
  • Jesus confronts those who confront and questions those who question (Luke 20)
  • Ignore discipline and come to poverty and shame (Proverbs 13:18)
  • Walk with the wise to become wise (Proverbs 13:20)
  • Luke 21:34 states to be careful not to be weighed down with anxieties of life; verse 36 says to pray that you may be able to stand before Jesus
And finally, Judges 4 is where my name came from!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Notes from Lesson 9 of Og Mandino's University of Success

Main thoughts from reading lesson 9:
  • Make the most of your abilities
  • Ask "What talents or abilities do I have?"
  • Discipline your abilities for maximum use
  • Set a sense of purpose for yourself
  • Put your talents to work
  • Use your imagination
  • Have enthusiasm for your work
  • Persevere in the use of talents
Remember the 3 bones: the wishbone for dreaming, the jawbone for asking, and the backbone for working

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Notes from Chapter 5 of How to Win Friends and Influence People

Some notes from Chapter 5 of HTWFIP, How to make a good first impression:
  • Facial expression is important
  • Sincere smile
  • Success comes when you have fun doing the work required for success
  • Everyone is seeking happiness, it can be had by controlling your thoughts
  • One word / one action: smile

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Study of Contrasts

Here are some things that caught my attention this week during my time in Scripture.
  • In Joshua 4 the Lord exalted Joshua. When you exalt yourself you will be humbled. When you humble yourself you will be exalted. (Luke 14)
  • Jesus associated with sinners. There is rejoicing in the presence of angels when a sinner repents. Rejoice when lost are found (Luke 15)
  • The people of this world are shrewder in dealing with their own kind than people of the light. Use worldly wealth to gain friends. If you can / can’t be trusted with a little, then you can / can’t be trusted with a lot. If you are not trustworthy with worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? (Luke 16)
  • Only one in ten were thankful and willing to praise God (Luke 17)
  • Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere (Psalm 84:10)
  • Righteousness guards a man of integrity, wickedness overthrows a sinner (Proverbs 13:6)
  • Don’t judge on appearances, there are those who pretend to be rich and have nothing, and there are those who pretend to be poor and are wealthy (Proverbs 13:7)
  • What must I do to gain eternal life? Give up everything and follow Christ. Peter said that he had given up everything to follow Christ. See Luke 18:29 for Christ’s response. How do you reconcile this?
  • Choice: be full of pride OR take advice (Proverbs 13:10)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Notes from Lesson 8 of Og Mandino's University of Success

Lesson 8 focused on how to develop your strengths. Main thoughts include:
  • You create opportunity by your feelings and determination
  • You must support yourself instead of undermining yourself
  • Be creative and imaginative instead of worrying
  • Live in the present. The past is gone. The future is unknown.
  • Set constructive goals and move yourself toward today’s opportunities

Sunday, April 13, 2008

7 Tensions Common to Christians in the Marketplace

  1. Serving God versus pursuing mammon
  2. Love versus competition
  3. People versus profits
  4. Family versus work
  5. Perspective in the face of success
  6. Charity versus wealth
  7. Faithful to God versus pluralistic

See Ecclesiastes 3 for perspective
(from the book Halftime by Bob Buford)