Friday, May 21, 2010


Not positive; opposed to affirmative, Having the power of stopping or restraining; The sign of subtraction, a sign which indicates that the quantity to which it is prefixed is to be subtracted. -Noah Webster 1828

“I have never seen a man who could do real work except under the stimulus of Encouragement & Enthusiasm, & the Approval of the people for whom he is working.” -Charles Schwab

“Correction does much, (and is sometimes needed) but Encouragement does MORE! Encouragement after censure is as the sun after a shower. -J. W. Goethe

It takes NO thought and even less courage to be Negative.

Go back and re-read the “Definition” of Negativity again (Slowly)

Now ask yourself “Am I always putting Minus signs at the end of my thought patterns? Are my words and actions building people and situations and institutions up or am I tearing them down?

My mother used to have a little magnet sign on our fridge when I was a boy growing up it said simply…”Dear Lord if I can’t say something good about others, just help keep my big mouth shut.”

Somebody sent me this cut out from one of Max Lucado’s books… I know your busy but I just was so challenged by it myself I had to pass it along…

It is so easy to Focus on the Negative in Life, in Others…..

Lord Help Us!!

Deb & I are Trying to stay Positive!

We want to be Positive People….

Could you consider leaving some Positive Feedback?

See You in Church!

The Bad News Preacher

Monday, May 10, 2010

Problems 101

Problems are not always a “Bad” thing. For many of us they are a necessary part of the Learning process….

Problems (Stress) can in fact be great Motivators in our lives, for change and growth. The pressure of deadlines, budgets, and the demands of others can push us to accomplish something, or even become someone that would have been impossible without the Problem. (Would a shepherd boy like little David have ever been King without Goliath?)

Have you ever been to the fairground or a boardwalk and seen that game called “Whac-a-Mole”? It’s a table with about 16 holes in it, and this little mechanical mole sticks his head out of one of the holes for a second. You try to Whac it with a rubber hammer, and his head just pops up somewhere else…..

Life ever feel like a game of “Whac-a-Problem” to you?

You have a Problem that shows up over there.
You go and Whac-It, and it seems to go away.
But have you really Fixed it, or has it just moved somewhere else? It’s hard sometimes to know if you have solved a problem or moved a Problem…

Someone said once, “you never actually find a perfect answer to a problem, you just find the answer that has the least problems.”

Anticipating problems and stressful situations can be a huge part of dealing with them when they arrive, learning to Calm yourself when they arrive, letting God’s Peace sort of flood your soul…

“Nobody gets through life without difficult things happening. We all have to know how to handle crisis. My father used to say to me, “Whenever you get into a jam, whenever you get into a crisis or an emergency, and everybody around you is getting very excited,” he said, “You become the calmest person in the room and you’ll be able to figure your way out of it. Force yourself to be calmer than you feel.” Rudolph Giuliani

When you find yourself stressed over some problem, ask yourself this one question: Will this matter 5 years from now? If yes then do something about the situation. If no, then let it go.

Rule number 1 is, don’t sweat the small stuff. Rule number 2 is, it’s ALL small stuff.

And if you can’t Fight and you can’t Flee, learn to Flow….

You will only be remembered for the Problems you solve or the Problems you create. So choose today How & Why you want to be remembered.

I promise you this. Currents of favor and blessing will flow into your life the moment you choose to solve a problem for somebody else. (Acts 28:10)

The problems you help solve for others determines the problems God will solve for you. (Ephesians 6:8)

Problems should never be shared, discussed with people incapable of solving them.

Problems are a catalyst that can cause us to reach for others. You only call a dentist when your teeth hurt. You only call your lawyer about legal matters. Problems create relationship.

Problems can also drive us to The Lord.

Don’t curse them all, they are not All from the devil….

Push past the fear and the pain. Grow Through the Problem!

Deb & I are Praying for You!

Will you Pray for Us? …. Try to leave some feedback!

Check out the attached “Study Tool”

“Getting Through Life’s Problems.”

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Every day is a school of Learning if we keep our ears and eyes open…..

Each experience good and bad can teach us something if we keep our Minds open……

Seemingly unimportant Moments if linked to our past experiences can re-shape our future for good.

Here is something I learned the Hard-Way….

If We Refuse To Learn The Easy Lessons Of Life, They Get Harder!

If we miss or ignore life’s quiet whispered lessons, they return as Wake-Up Calls, and whenever God calls, we had better pick up the phone.

We can’t undo all our mistakes, all our bad judgments, all our sin, but we can Learn from them. If we don’t Learn, the Lessons get Harder….

Regretting our mistake is not the same as Learning The Lesson.

In the school of daily Life we are not here to be perfect, but to Live and Learn, to fall and rise again with God’s help. ~ To evolve and strive toward our highest God given Potential.

We are here not always to get what WE want, but to Learn and Grow, to help others in their “School” learning, and ultimately to become who God wants us to be and Needs us to be for His Kingdom.

Listen, God comforts the disturbed and disturbs the comfortable.

Two of the most power filled classrooms in Life are Relationships and Disappointments (some of you have taken these classes together..Ouch!)

Relationships can often serve as “God’s pressure cooker,” through which we gain access to self-knowledge. If we are honest it is in the middle of some relationship difficulty that we have seen parts of ourselves that weren’t as Christ-like as we had imagined ourselves to be... Remember You can Only Change YOU!

Seeing ourselves this way can birth Stubbornness or Humility……

But will you Learn?

Life is what we make it. Always has been, always will be. ~Grandma Moses

Disappointments, Adversity, Pain are another of Life’s greatest teachers if we will listen…

Physical pain, or discomfort wakes us to a physical problem and we finally make that doctors appointment, or schedule that unpleasant test we have been putting off.

Good advice often works best, when preceded by a bad scare. ~English Proverb

Some pain in life is inevitable, but as we open our minds to the Lesson it is trying to teach us.. As we allow the Holy Spirit to direct us out of the pain, suffering dissolves….

The cat, having sat upon a hot stove lid, will not sit upon a hot stove lid again. But he won't sit upon a cold stove lid, either. ~Mark Twain

Learn, the stove is not evil, the heat is the problem!!!

Repeated lessons hurt the most, so let’s all follow the example of Polly, the quick witted but foul mouthed parrot given as a birthday gift to Patty. Polly had a bad attitude and an even worse mouth, cussed like a sailor (no offense to sailors, but you know how you talk..) Patty tried playing Christian music, no change. She tried pleading, praying and eventually yelling, but Polly continued cursing. So, in a moment of desperation, Patty shoved Polly in the freezer, surrounded by frozen vegetables, fish, and chicken. Polly squawked, screeched and cussed for a few moments ~ then suddenly went silent. Worried that she may have frozen her pet, Patty quickly opened the freezer door… Polly calmly and quietly stepped out onto Patty’s extended arm and said, “I sincerely regret if my language has offended you and I offer my deepest apologies. In the future I will endeavor to correct my behavior and be a model of civility.” Wow! Patty thought great it worked. Then Polly added casually, “By the way, Patty, may I enquire as to how the chicken offended you?”

Polly decided to Learn the easy Lesson ~ a visit to the freezer instead of permanent residence.

I recently read an article by Dr. Mark Rutland…It was clever, and very thought provoking after sharing it with Deb she suggested I share it with our Blog friends, she must have known some of you are still Learning..(Like Us)

Below is a link…Read it.. Pray about it …Print it …Practice it …Pass it along…

See You in Church….

Leave “Some” Feedback…

Still Learning…Mark & Deb

10 Things I Wish I'd Known When I Was 21

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Game of Life!

Life is an Adventure! Ever hear that expression?

Adventures can be great fun!

They can also turn into moments of confusion, frustration, fear, and even into getting us off-track. Most of us like the thrill of exploring the unknown, as long as we’ve got a guide. Without one, adventures frequently lead to disaster.

It certainly makes sense to expect that the Creator of life would be the best Guide for life’s adventure. He is! And He’s given us a written guide to life—the Bible. God’s Word functions as our helpful companion along the way.

Although God has given us a guide to life, there are times we don’t always pay attention to it. We ignore the warnings and directions from God as often as we disregard the instructions of a human guide. Often, those moments of confusion, frustration and getting off-track can turn into profitable lessons if we stop long enough to say, “I should have been paying closer attention!”

How Can I Simplify My Life, Yet Live It Fully?

Life is a series of “moments”………

When we think about it (which is most of the problem) life appears complex and busy. This is an illusion. Life is simple and serene, because we can only live one moment at a time. There are no neurotic or intelligent people; only neurotic or intelligent moments (Choices). By paying attention to the present moment, and the next, and the next, we determine the quality of our lives.

The Only Problem You Will Ever Have Is A Wisdom Problem.

The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine… your Choices… your Moments.

Wisdom comes to us through God’s special revelation His Word.

Application of this wisdom is “seen” in the intent and discipline to make Godly choices in a world filled with sinful distractions and detours. Wisdom represents the culmination of knowledge and understanding carried to its practical and ultimate end.

Wisdom involves “Knowing” the facts of divine revelation, (His Word) and an “Understanding” of these principals so as to see God’s intention of a blessed or happy life through redemption (from our mistakes, the past) and a practical sanctification (a better tomorrow.)

Wisdom then engages the human intellect and will translate this “Knowledge” and “Understanding” into a pattern of godly experiences and responses becoming the Habits of one’s life.

What Has God said… What am I going to Do about what He has said?

Deb & I care about you…

We want you to LIVE THE ADVENTURE God has planned and purposed for YOU!

See You IN Church

Leave some stinking feedback!

We trust the following “Study Tool” will encourage you to pay closer attention before you reach a dead end or feel lost. It’s our hope that you will develop a new confidence in your guide to life, the Bible, and the One who provided it for you. And we pray that your adventure with the Lord as your Guide will be great fun!

Finding Your Central Purpose.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Cultivating Character

What Motivated you to Choose your Goal? What inspires you to succeed at it? What pushes you to keep trying? What carries you through times of self-doubt?

Your answers to these questions comprise your Character; they define your interests, values, strengths, and means of support.

The Stronger your Character; the More Stable Your Success.

True Character Needs A Source Of Conviction & Power …….

Self-trust is the first se
cret of success, the belief that if you are here the Authorities of the universe put you here, and for a cause, or with some task strictly appointed you in your constitution, and so long as you work at that you are successful. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The Authorities of the Universe put you here…”

Wow! What a Character Cultivating truth. The Holy Trinity Put me here to be and do something They need me to Be & Do…….. Time to step up from stupid!

You will never reach the Palace talking and acting like a peasant.

Change what you Believe God thinks about you and you will Change!

Get a New Conviction and watch your Character Grow.

Then see that source of “Conviction” (God’s Purpose) as the Power to stand in Character against all that would attack, or compromise these Convictions.

You will, undoubtedly, meet people who will try to shut you up or entice you to compromise your principles in any number of ways. They’ll try to seduce you and distract you with money, power, security and perhaps most dangerously, a sense of belonging. Don’t let them; it’s just not worth it. One of the biggest threats to our world is the culture of silence and compromise – politicians who compromise their beliefs because they are scared they will anger their voters and won’t get reelected, corporate executives who put profit over principles. You can have a conscience and still make money. You can have genuine values and still get elected. You can even make movies that do well at the box office without playing to the lowest common denominator. ~Samuel L. Jackson

Character is a Choice.

Choose to Believe that God has a Purpose a Plan just for you.

He needs you to be unequally YOU!

Begin to Do the things you Have to Do when you have to do them; and the day will arrive when you can do the things you want to do when you want to do them.

One of the Greatest Qualities on earth is the Willingness to Become.

O keep me, Lord, and deliver me; let me not be ashamed or disappointed, for my trust and my refuge are in You. Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for and expect You. ~Psalm 25:20-21

Thanks for taking the time to Read our Ramblings… Deb & I Believe in YOU! But you need to Believe That God Believes in You! See You in Church
Would you leave a little “Feed-Back”? And Check out a short Study Tool Below.

“Seven things that Characterize Caleb’s Character…”

Saturday, February 6, 2010


The root of the word “Encouragement” means to “Put Courage Into.”

What a wonderful picture of one person standing beside another saying, “Take Courage!” God has given you the ability to be that person to others.

Ask Him to show you those who could use a kind word, an uplifting thought, a simple prayer. They could be strangers on the street or members of your own family.

Your Encouragement may just help someone walk when they might have stumbled. You might help someone stand firm instead of giving in. And Encouraging others has yet another benefit. Those around you are strengthened so they can offer you an encouraging word when YOU need one.

I think too many Christians are “dying on the Vine” for lack of encouragement from other believers.

Therefore encourage (admonish, exhort) one another and edify (strengthen and build up) one another, just as you are doing. ~1 Thessalonians 5:11

Many a time a word of praise or thanks or appreciation or cheer has kept a man on his feet. Blessed is the man who speaks such a word. ~William Barcklay

Encouragement is Oxygen to the soul. ~George Adams

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel great, they make you feel like you, too, can become great. We tend to become what the most important person in our life thinks we will become. So be careful who you allow to become important in your life.

One of the secrets to encouraging others is to get excited about the right things. Some people get excited about pointing out mistakes or finding someone’s failures. Instead we should get excited about their strengths and the little things they are doing right.

How To Become An Encourager

1. Appreciate the Power of Encouragement ~It really is Oxygen to the soul.

2. Believe in People ~ If you don’t believe in people they won’t believe in you.

3. Build Relationships ~The closer you are, the more your encouragement counts.

4. Walk your Talk ~ Model first what you would encourage others to do.

5. Show people you think they are Important ~ Remember their names and ask for help.

6. Give people a Reputation to Uphold ~People rise to our level of expectations.

7. Reward what you Value ~What gets Rewarded gets Done!

8. Hold more Celebrations ~Acknowledging wins Motivates people to keep trying.

9. Encourage Participation and Ownership ~People don’t get down on what they’re up on.

10. Raise the Bar ~Many people will stretch to Success if Challenged.

If you’re wondering who needs encouragement, just look for the brokenhearted those who have failed, or had a set-back… isn’t that when you needed the most encouragement in life?

The wisest person pardons mistakes and even forgives intentional transgressions. In that way, he/she insures the upward spiral of their own prosperity & blessing. The inferior person cannot resist the opportunity to chastise, criticize or even condemn another and, in so doing, brings judgment and resentment onto themselves, destroying unity, and crushing enthusiasm, thereby destroying their own chances for success

Jesus was “The Great Encourager” especially of those who “Failed.”

Listen to this and Be Encouraged!

If you have messed-up, if you are not perfect, if you’re life grade is a D- guess what? God still Loves YOU! He wants to help you turn things around, He will use your Pain & and show you how to Gain!

Deb & I want to Hopefully Encourage You TODAY!

See You in Church!

Check out this STUDY TOOL …

Hope for the Discouraged Heart

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Life is about making choices.

On average, an adult spends hours each day just making decisions. We must decide what to wear, what to eat, when to get up, where to drive, what floor we want the elevator to stop at, whether we’ll overlook an insult or not, whether we will consciously love the unlovable. The choices we make range from the important to the mundane—but they all require our time and prayerful concentration.

The most Important choice we will make is not “where we will go” but rather “Who will we become?”

The only true freedom each of us has is the freedom to choose. But once we choose, we become the servant of our choices!

In this Blog we will look at one of the most power-filled choices we can make in life: choosing to withhold revenge.

If we could see the secret history in our enemies, we should find in each life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all our hostility. ~Henry W. Longfellow

When we see everyone (in church) is a part of us, that any criticism we make is self-criticism, we will extend to ourselves an unconditional love that will light the world. ~Henry Palmer

Whether or not you recall the names of the two wealthiest people in the world—or the last few winners of the Heisman Trophy, or Academy Awards----I’ll guarantee you can remember the names of two favorite teachers, a coach, or friends who stood by you when everyone else walked.

We remember the people who “Cared”

And we can become one of those people who are held in others’ hearts and memories long after we have passed from this planet. It is what we are here to do; next to simple acts of kindness & forgiveness, all our personal achievements pale.

Acts of kindness, love, forgiveness and tenderness close the circle of life and connect us to others. What we do for ourselves dies with us, but what we do for others echoes throughout the ages.

We can see and enjoy every sight around the world, experience every luxury and pleasure. But when we look back on our lives and review our memories, none of it will match the delight of bringing a smile to someone’s face, or performing some act of courage, kindness or forgiveness. These “Things” take us beyond ourselves, past our separation; they bring meaning and purpose to life.

We are each angels with only one wing; we fly only by embracing one another. ~Luciano de Crescenzo

A few years ago, at the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100-yard dash. At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is, except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a few times, and began to cry. The other eight youngsters heard his cries, slowed down, and looked back. Then every one of them turned around and went back. A girl with Down’s Syndrome bent down and kissed him. Then all nine children linked arms and walked together to the finish line.

Can we learn from these youngsters to compete and collaborate at the same time?

Can we celebrate our journey “Together” as brothers and sisters “In Christ” in a spirit of cooperation and willing forgiveness?

Perhaps we could “Together” discover our greatest Purpose yet!

Let’s Learn To Get Over Ourselves!

Ninety percent of the art of living consists of learning how to get along with people one cannot stand. ~Samuel Goldwin ……… (Rough! But I like it!)

The Lord Needs You…..

Deb & I Need You!

See You in Church!

Check out the attached study tool……

“Our Response”