Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Bigotry, Change, Confidence, Death, Determination, Discipleship, Faith, freedom, friend, Generosity, Giving, God, Greed, guilt, Happiness, Health, helping, Honor, judgment, Justice, kindness, Life, Love, Mind Power, Opinions, Pain, Progress, Racism, Religion, repentance, Self, Sharing, slave, society, Success, Truth

No middle ground

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We are a society of extremes — and it doesn’t have to be that way. The way things are going we will of course destroy our planet and ourselves.

There seems to be no middle ground that anyone wants to choose. Think about it? We live in a world where people actual starve to death. And then on the other side of the world there are people so obese that they struggle through their lives suffering from degenerative diseases until they die.

We have generations of people in poverty living in conditions that are deplorable and then just a few days journey away, there are people so wealthy that it would take 4 generations to spend it all.

This crazy world has Christians that practice hate, record keeping of wrongdoing and feel murder can be justified, while there are atheist seeking to live in peace and harmony.

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There are workoholics who hold down two and three jobs at a time while others can’t seem to find one job.

The question today is what will it take to move us to the center? Get rid of the media? Seek Jesus for real? Eliminate big business? I want to raise our conscious level higher so that we are more sensitive to our fellow man.

Did it work? I would love to hear your feedback.

Posted in Accountability, Change, Generosity, Giving, Greed, guilt, Happiness, Health, helping, kindness, Life, Love, Relationships, Sharing, society, Success, Taking Responsibility, Time, Truth, Uncategorized

What if?

Upon occasion I like to sit and day-dream about the world being different. I mean if we as Americans had a different way of thinking. What if we never looked to gain anything from anybody? What if the motivating factor for everything we did had to do with the betterment of humanity and not the financial gain of ourselves?

Dr. Jonas Salk was the person credited for the discovery of the cure for polio in 1955. Two years later Dr. Albert Sabin created the oral version. As time went on and the research continued we began to learn more things about polio all in the interest of science and humanity. These two men lived good lives and neither wanted to gain financially from their work. Dr. Salk, when asked who owns the patent for the polio cure said, “the American people own it.” These two vaccines helped remove polio in many different parts of the world. Within the period of 1988 to 2007, the number of cases was trimmed down significantly from 350,000 to 1,652. 

By 1994, polio was completely removed from the Americas. In 2000, it was erased in almost 36 countries within the Western Pacific region including Australia and China. In 2002, Europe became polio-free. By 2008, only four countries remained affected by this disease, namely Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Nigeria. Today, the transfer of poliovirus from one person to another has been widely disrupted. However, wild poliovirus transmissions are still very much possible, particularly in areas with poor sanitation as well as low vaccination coverage.

What if this effort was repeated for heart disease, diabetes, cancer and AIDS? What if the pharmaceutical companies were all not for profits and a successful year for them would be to “break even” with their budgets and not make a profit. What if their sole drive and goal was to make themselves obsolete? What if hospitals were all not for profits with the same goal– to educate people to the point that they never needed to be hospitalized? What if as a country, it mattered to us what we ate, how we interacted with the environment and how we treated one another?

You can’t help but wonder if we, working together, would have figured out time travel, gain the ability to move objects or even learned to fly. We would most certainly have worked out starvation and degenerative diseases. We could even eliminate rich and poor people, make education completely free and enjoy world peace.

And then I woke up.

Posted in Achievement, Black History Month, Career, Generosity, Giving, Greed, Justice, Life, Mind Power, Progress, society, Success

Choices — a tribute to Dr. King

This week we honor a great man who dared to take what he knew and teach it to others. He did this with no regard for his own life, future earnings or even the safety of his family.

He chose a way of life that would benefit the greater good. How unselfish.

I often wonder what Martin Luther King Jr would  have done if he was selfish and had bought into the American dream?

Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with success if that’s your thing. And there is nothing wrong with earning money or climbing the corporate ladder. I just wonder for his time, what a guy with his skills could have done?

He was a great orator! He could have been one of the greatest spokespersons the field of marketing and advertising ever saw — especially with his popularity. The actor and former U.S. president Ronald Reagan made more money as a spokesperson than he did in all of his movies combined! As he became a household word, I wonder how that helped his presidency?

It goes without saying that King would have been the King of televangelism. Since the likes of Creflo Dollar, TD Jakes and Joel Osteen this has become a billion dollar industry. All of these guys mentioned are multimillionaires. Pat Robertson and Jim Baker didn’t have half of King’s ability and did alright in the financial department because of the power of TV. If Pat Robertson had the compassion, integrity and skill of King he would have had a successful bid for the white house.

And then there was Dr. King’s leadership ability. He was a transitional leader who really knew how to build relationships, empower and motivate people and change lives. Under such leadership, I don’t believe the auto industry would have had the near collapse it was faced with a couple of years ago.

Somewhere along the way the quality of America’s products took a dive and we were left holding the scrap metal. No one looked to blame poor management instead they blamed a struggling economy. We blamed the economy during a time when Toyota, Hyundai and Honda posted record sales. These companies didn’t need a buyout and they thrived in the same American market!

I could go on, but the point is that when you really examine the choices Dr. King made compared to his options, he’s an even better man than we thought.

Happy birthday and thank you for your choices Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.!

Posted in Accountability, Beauty, Bigotry, Change, Confidence, Faith, Fear, Free Will, Generosity, Greed, Grief, guilt, Happiness, helping, History, Honor, Justice, kindness, Life, Love, Marriage, Opinions

So what I’m trying to say is . . .

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In January we tried to start the year new.

February was the month to build new relationships or strengthen old ones with the help of cupid. It didn’t work.

In 2013 March brought us the memory of the resurrection as we pondered our relationship with the cross. We felt guilty.

April always fools us. We’re fooled by people and things and we suffer loss of income, respect and dignity.

In May and June we remembered our parents, but failed to do anything more meaningful than a visit. We try, and try and try and there just isn’t enough time in a day. These visit are probably the most sincere things we’ll attempt all year, but we have a hard time going beyond that.

We celebrated our independence in July. The freedoms we enjoy allowed us to over spend, over indulge and over react. We came out of the month with one truth — it’s hotter than hell in July.

August meant nothing to us. Only emptiness and uncertainty wondering what the rest of the year would bring….

September was a reminder that we have to work. We must work for our living and work to pay taxes for other people’s living and work to support our government. The ninth month reminds us that there is no rest from our labors.

October is full of tricks and lies. It lies about the treats because they never existed. And all that’s left is tricks. We live in a world full of unmet expectations and unused potential. The only thing that really happens in the month is that we get tricked.

November we’re supposed to be thankful and in December we are supposed to be at peace. That doesn’t happen either so all we get is tricked.

Sooooooooo,

Dear significant other,

Since I regularly participate in May and June, I won’t April you. I’m December and I’m November so despite what happens in September, October and August, our February will be July. So let’s January!

Posted in Accountability, Change, Divorce, Giving, Greed, Happiness, History, Life, Love, Marriage, Opinions, Perseverance, Relationships, Sharing, society, Taking Responsibility, The Family, Truth

Unconditional marriage?

unconditional loveSo we know that the divorce rate is really high. But it doesn’t have to be. Is it really possible that all of these divorced people just happened to marry the wrong person?

I know that there have been some in terrible abusive relationships and for safety reasons they had to get out. But the lion share of divorces stem from unmet expectations and selfish motives.

No one told them that unconditional love was supposed to be brought to the marriage, not generated from within.

They didn’t know that forgiveness wasn’t optional when they said “I do” and that expectations were only conditions you place on yourself.

They were ignorant to what things should have been the most important. It’s a bad feeling to be judged by how much money you make, how you dress, how shapely your hips are or the size of your breasts. It’s extremely shallow for someone to expect their own version of what’s perfect to be matched or exceeded by their partner.

Of all the scriptures we take literally, no one bothered to take Jesus seriously when he said, “If your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out!” Or “If your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off!” (Matt. 5:29-30).

The simple fix for marriage is for each party to take a step back and really look at what they are bringing to the table. What you are bringing to the table can’t just look good to you alone. It needs to be valuable to the person you pledged to live forever with.

If it is not, and it probably isn’t, the two of you need to talk and stop playing married and truly work at being married.

Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Beauty, Books, Change, Giving, Greed, Happiness, History, Iraq War, Life, Love, Opinions, Pain, Patriotism, Politics, Sharing, society, Taking Responsibility, Truth

Lessons confirmed in 2012

20130104-234856.jpgIf you are reading this blog, then once again there were foolish folks that believed the world ended a few weeks ago. We should all be thankful we made it out of 2012.

I have to say that I didn’t learn any “new” lessons, but I definitely confirmed some lessons I thought I knew. It’s always good to recap the previous year so that the next year is better. Each year we’re supposed to get better. Life is supposed to get easier. After all we matured didn’t we?

Well, I hope that you are enjoying the new year and you are already working your plan of action to make 2013 better than 2012. With that said, here are the top 5 things I confirmed in 2012. I’d love to hear about your list.

1) Read more non-fiction books and watch less TV! This one is a no-brainer. TV is run by corporate America and it is designed for one thing: To get you to buy the ads you see. There is science that supports the ability for ads to reach your subconscious mind. Your spending habits are linked to this. Now before you go thinking that I’m crazy, there is a company called NeuroFocus and they probe consumers subconscious by using Electroencephalography (I’m not smart enough to make up a word like this). The other problem with TV other than being a big waste of time is how your body handles your emotional reactions to shows. For example, whenever you get angry, your blood pressure rises and your arteries take a hit especially among older groups. So when you get so into a character on a show and their actions make you angry, your body doesn’t say, “Oh, you’re just watching TV.” Since your body can’t tell the difference, it handles that situation as if you were really angry.

2) Life is too short so to maximize your time you should spend time letting the people close to you know how important they are to you. Your circle of trust should know who they are. Your family should know they are loved because they heard you say it as well as demonstrate it. You should make sure you are living forgiven meaning that no one should die thinking you have a grudge with them or that you thought ill of them. Be known as a giver and allow others to benefit from your generosity — not just your money, but even more important is your time.

3) Get your house in order and keep it that way. This means that no matter how old you are the people close to you should know your advance directives and your wishes at end of life. We don’t know when our time is up, so it’s always a good thing — no matter how old you are — to have a plan and let those closest to you know what your plan is and the role they play in that plan. If you have done this, every year it’s a good idea to make sure it is current and your wishes are still the same. You want to make sure that the people involved in your plan at the end of life are still willing to carry out your wishes at the end.

4) Everyone needs a day of rest. God rested from his labors on the seventh day and he created us with the idea that we would need a break from the natural rhythm of life to reset. There is an awesome book written by Dr. Marva Dawn called “Keeping the Sabbath Holy” and she beautifully describes this concept and gives a lot of great information on the topic.

5) One of the most hurtful things is to have expectations for someone or something and get let down. It would help us all to remember that in America we make money. That’s what we do above all else. There are some secondary things that we do, but due to big business and politics, our system is flawed. Case in point: Sandy relief was recently left for the next session of congress because there was so much other stuff (like a new roof for the Smithsonian Institute) written into the bill. One would think that a bill with the subject Sandy Relief fund would only include things immediately related to people. I’m sure the Smithsonian probably does need a new roof, but at this point it is at the expense of the Sandy survivors. Our wars are about money and greed. There is an excellent documentary series by Oliver Stone on Showtime that talks about the untold history of the United States. It’s a sobering look at how the world sees and has seen our country over the years. This documentary has challenged me to re-evaluate what’s important to me and to help make America truly beautiful. Make the most of 2013 my friend!