Because I co-host the daily call in show UpFront, I get stopped on the street by local citizens frequently. One of the most common questions I am asked is: “What is going on in the US today?”
It seems the craziness of politics has reached into everyone’s lives, even people who are normally not very political in their everyday lives. Many are concerned and worried due to events that seem to be spinning out of control and no one in authority seems to have any satisfactory answers. The only answer I can give that really makes sense to me comes from 1 John 5:19:
“We know that we belong to God, and the whole world is under the power of the evil one.”
Keep in mind that this world is the domain of sin and evil, run by mostly evil men fighting over power, money and prestige. When you choose to keep your focus on higher things than this world, it will make more sense and give you peace.
“Imagination without hard work is usually barren: and what is more, the brighter the imagination the greater the amount of work required to its full fruition.“ – Abbott Lawrence Lowell (1856 – 1943) Educator
The world is filled with brilliant people. One half of the world is above average. So why do so few truly reach their full potential?
The difference: effort, persistence, goal setting.
If you have unopened gifts from God, if you have talents unused or intelligence unrealized, that tragedy falls on no one else but you. There is no grand conspiracy against you, keeping you down or thwarting your success. There is only your motivation to make the best of what God has given you. Are you willing to do what is necessary?
The great thing about life is as long as we have breath in our body, it is never too late to go to work and pursue a goal.
Start small, start today.
This is the time of the year for which they wrote the song lyric: “Summertime… and the living is easy.”
Days are warm, nights become cool enough to sleep and the gardens are producing food, flowers and look beautiful in the afternoon sun.
Pickling of various vegetables consume the diligent gardeners time (I like to include myself in that category). Now is the time to fill the cool, dark larders in the basement which pays dividends in the cold harsh days ahead.
Generations of humans have experienced this time of year and for the wise among us, the shortening days inspire the instincts to prepare for the future. This is one instinct which almost all of us share, no matter our race, our geography, our nationality. For the wise among us, we know that one must prepare in the good times for the hard times most certainly ahead.
A garden in the summer is the most basic of human rites. Did you plant yours?
I saw a bumper sticker the other day that said “The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it.” I believe this would indicate that the driver of the car doesn’t have a high opinion of people of faith. In his belief system, science is the ultimate arbiter of truth.
However, what science believers of his ilk fail to take into account (or willfully choose to ignore) is that science, no matter which discipline, is only as good as the data that go into the scientific conclusions. If a scientist chooses to manipulate the data from his experiment to support his hypothesis, no truth has been discovered. This happens all the time.
What people who express an unfailing belief in the results of scientific methods are really saying is that they have an unshakable faith in the integrity of the scientists. They are telling us that scientists are not subject to human failings such as pride, sloth, greed, envy or lust. That is a bridge too far for me.
I respect scientists and I understand that much of what we have in the modern world comes from the scientific method. However, I don’t put my faith in science. I study it, I marvel at it and I am happy to reap the benefits of the technology which comes from it. However, I don’t put my faith in it.
I put my faith in the revealed word of God who loves me and wants only what is good for me. The good thing about the Word is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it.
I choose to believe God.
“Don’t it always seem to go; you don’t know what you’ve got ’til its gone.” – Joni Mitchell “Big Yellow Taxi”
So. Life has changed. It continues to change and we don’t really know when the tumult and whirlwind are going to stop. Livelihoods and businesses being put on hold, some even being destroyed, while the people involved are just told to “take one for the team.”
Here up in the Prairie, the appearance of life seems unchanged. Sure, the restaurants and honky tonks are closed, but we can still get take out. The powers that be haven’t ordered checkpoints yet, so we can still travel unfettered; but only if we have someplace to go to and a reason to go there. The thing I miss the most right now is being able to go to Sunday Mass and sing joyous songs to the Lord. My hope is that eventually that will be restored, but will it ever be the same again?
What do you miss? What will never be the same again? What did you have before the Virus that is gone?
No leaves, No green, No warmth, No light, No sun, No-vember.
November lurks in the calendar like an unwanted task. It is one of those chores you know needs to be done, yet you wish it would just go away. As the month wears on, the days become shorter, colder and more difficult. Everyone begins the long process of surviving the coming trial of winter. We know it is coming and sometime during the long stretch which is November, we just come to terms with fate and make the conscious decision to “Just get on with it”.
That is why I say Poor November. November can become so reviled, we celebrate the end of the month with a feast, so happy are we to be done with the entire mess.
“If a composer could say what he had to say in words he would not bother trying to say it in music.” -Gustav Mahler
I came of age in a time when music used to mean something.
My formative years were filled with poets and activists trying to change our awareness of the world around us and trying to get us to understand that life was about more than just ourselves, that the world was more than our own little neighborhood and that we should all aspire to more than filling our pockets with gold.
I’m not quite sure when that all changed, but I’m pretty sure disco had something to do with it, because around the time of disco is when my generation stopped trying to love each other and started just loving ourselves. After disco, it was every man for himself.
Today, I hear pretty songs and I hear musical artistry, but none of what I hear tries really tries to change the world and the world is lesser for that fact.
For what should we be thankful? For the amazing prosperity that we enjoy in this country? For the legacy of liberty that has been handed to these generations by those who have gone before? For electricity or indoor plumbing or modern appliances or for any number of important inventions and developments that have contributed to our wonderful American way of life? How about all of the above?
A man, having worked and planned for success all of his adult life is on the cusp of attaining it all. He has worked hard and saved to buy the business he wanted, in the city he loved. He built the new building that would help him to deliver all of the services he knows his customers want and he is poised, finally poised, to be able to enjoy the fruits of his labors. His later years stretch out in front of him in a shining vision of exactly the life he wants to live.
Yes, he has sacrificed a great deal of his youth working towards his goal. He may have not been able to spend all of the time he might have wanted with his family. However, now he can pay it all back. Now that he has attained his goals and secured his and his families’ futures, now he can be everything he has always wanted to be to them. Now, he has time… Except, now he doesn’t. A diagnosis of cancer, a bad one, has suddenly brought his future into a monthly chemotherapy frame of focus. Hope no longer means hoping one can get a reservation at the trendy tropical resort, hope now means being around for Easter.
For what should we be thankful? How about our friends, our family, our lives? How about the simple, everyday things like a good cup of coffee and the time to enjoy it?
Thank God every day for the morning and the challenges of each day as they come.
“Money may kindle, but it cannot by itself and for very long, burn.” – Igor Stravinsky
What is our motivating factor? What drives us toward excellence? The powers that be in our lives hope that they can motivate the masses with the promise of a nicer car, a bigger office, perhaps a home on the river or a vacation in Aruba. Employers and the people trying to sell you “stuff” want us to be motivated by money, power and prestige. Why? Because that is the easiest way for them to manipulate people; to get us to do what they want us to do.
However, vacations end, cars get old, that big house on the hill soon becomes cluttered with the detritus of everyday living; the glamour soon fades. Money is our means to survival and is therefore necessary, but it can’t be our mission in life.
Money can’t motivate long term because the things which truly motivate humans; the ideas that make one want to get out of bed in the morning, a mission in life; these are spiritual in nature. If we try to substitute money for mission we soon end up dissatisfied with our job, our purpose, our life.
I believe everyone should strive to earn as much as they possibly can in their occupation. I believe that everyone should enjoy the just rewards of their efforts. I also believe that the best way to do that is to find a way to turn your occupation into your mission. Only then will one earn enough, one will be find happiness and fulfillment in doing so.
My mission in life is to be a smart ass on a talk show on 960 KLTF from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM Monday through Friday. Can be streamed at FallsRadio.com