Saturday, August 17, 2013

Every generation laughs at the old fashions, but religiously follows the new.” - Thoreau

Dear self,
You are the same as everyone else.  They thought they looked cool.  They thought they lived in a great part of town.  They thought they drove a nice car.  Guess what humanity has never done.  Stopped wanting.  The Earth spun with them on its back just like it is carrying you now.  Round and round and round we go.  Where it stops, nobody knows.

Am I trying to consume an ever-changing target?
The stuff is piling up.  The space is being filled.  The time is rounding the corner of the circle that constantly leaves moments in the dust of dashes.  Tick...tick.  We are constantly pulled to more by our culture and selfish desires.  

When was the last time I didn't want anything?

This cycle will never stop without intentionality.  Intentionality, by nature, always comes with a certain lack of comfort.  If it didn't, wouldn't we just fall into it naturally?  So what am I/we willing to be uncomfortable for?  A life of consumption effects your peace, your time, your relaxation, your wife, your children, your bank account, and your future.  Buying more just means you have more to keep track of, keep clean, keep fixed, and keep stored.  And if you spend it now on "x", then it is impossible to spend it later on "y."  So the decision that effects later is always made in the now.  

Look around.  How many of your possessions are displayed rather than used?  Conspicuous consumption is in effect.  Now, does every possession represent a loss in margin for generosity and contentment?  Hmm.

Every dollar has a destination that effects someone somewhere.  
Every second has the effect of building or bringing down.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

I was lying.  This really is the last one.  A little bit more advice:

-Dreams come from our longings.  What do you always want?
-All we know about Jesus is that when he was thirty he was prepared.
-There are 168 hours in every week.  Make time for praying and reading.
-And don't just ready the Bible.  Meditate on it.
-Give hilariously.  It should be ridiculous if it is going to cause faith.
-There are four things men need: God, meditation, community, and sacrifice.
-Vocalize appreciation immediately.
-Do your best to be everything for all people.  This is serving like the Apostle Paul.
-Who am I pouring into right now?  There must always be at least on person.
-Make disciples one day at a time.
-Just because a door isn't open doesn't mean you don't go through it.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

One more round of advice:

-Always have your questions ready for the old guys.
-Lead your wife to the Bible.  She needs to walk in on you on your knees early in the morning.
-Lead her in prayer.  Pray out loud with your entire family.
-Lead her to church.  Be the first one ready to go.
-Lead her financially.  Be the first on to sell your stuff when times get hard.
-Lead in sacrifice.  Give love when it isn't returned.
-Lead in forgiveness.  Go first.
-Lead in priorities.  Act before you talk.
-Lead in evangelism.
-Lead in abandonment of pride.
-Lead in direction.
-Always do what God has revealed to me now.  Then just never stop.
-We need to increase our reality of life and death.
-Just worry about being a physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual success in this day.
-Always win the day you are in.  How many days do you have left this year?  Always know.
-Plan to get over things quickly.
-"Marriage did what no monastery ever could."-Luther
-The struggles you are facing are always with spiritual forces.
-Be willing to pay your dues.  In your twenties, you have earned very little.
-Shortcuts always disappoint.

Monday, April 22, 2013

A little more advice given to me by a wise man:

-Deal with your crap.  Nothing just goes away.
-Find someone who wants what they already have and spend time with them.
-Don't be self deceived.
-An expectation is often just a resentment waiting to happen when you force it on others.
-Just do the things for your wife that you know you need to do.
-First question to ask when I'm frustrated is, "What is wrong with me?"

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Another round of great advice given to me recently:

-Learn different languages.
-What is valuable?  What makes great men great?  A sense of destiny.
-Dream great dreams in God.
-Entitlement destroys your ability to dream.
-The biggest thing that is stopping you is fear.
-Don't be the slave of other men's opinions.
-2 Kings 3:13-20.  How deep will I dig?  How many jars will I bring?  The supernatural supply will meet your expectations in God.
-God will put things on your heart that look ridiculous in the natural.
-The dream has to begin when it's impossible to do.
-What am I swapping my life for?  Everything is a transaction.
-Real success comes from a walk with God.  Everything else is just nice.
-God calls families.  Don't short change your kids with a shallow well.
-Revival can break out.
-Am I living for dreams or projects?
-It doesn't start with wisdom or fancy words, but with power.
-Only 5% of the church exists in first world nations.
-To create a single convert to Christianity it takes $7 for an African, $11 for an Asian, and $1.2 million for an American.
-The greatest education you can give your children is travelling.
-You have to pursue it radically.  If you won't you aren't owned by God.
-Look at history.  Government doesn't fix problems.  Only transformed hearts by Jesus has.
-You can't out give God.  But you can try.
-God gives bread and seed.  Don't eat your seed.  Sow it.  Ask him every time which one it is.
-Grow in grace and knowledge.  He calls us to "be" everything else.  You can make a deliberate change in yourself because of Jesus.
-What is my job?  Bring heaven to earth.
-My kids should stand on my shoulders.  A true father releases.
-You are dead to sin.  It takes five seconds, not fifty years.
-Spend three hours a week on dreaming.
-"Lord, tell me more about who I am."
-"God, what are we doing today?"
-Pray for a word from God for your children on their birthday.
-It takes full commitment and intentionality.
-When do you have shiny eyes?  Do those things every week.
-Do not try to fix your weaknesses.  Lean into your strengths and the weaknesses will be resolved by God.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

No I'm not dead.  Just distracted.  Enough said.

Here are a few things that great men have told me recently.  It's a lot, but pick and choose as you will:

-I want a faith fuelled by saying yes.
-Get up tomorrow morning and do one thing you won't forget.
-We live in stages.  Beloved Son, Cowboy, Warrior, Lover, and King
-Milen, a habit producing chemical, forms more in your twenties than any other time of life.
-What makes your twenties a success...intentionality.
-Read about George Washington.  He won all the battles that must be won.
-Do something hard every day.  Wake up early, run until you throw up, forgive someone.
-Choose time over treasure.  Time is the greatest nonrenewable resource.  Spend your money on time because days turn into decades.
-Choose who over what.  The most important questions in life start with "who."  Marry well because it influences everything.
-Choose the gospel over everything.  The Bible isn't about me.  Apply Jesus to my story.
-"Make a great shoe and sell it for a great price."-Luther
-Sanctification should always begin by looking at justification.
-The gospel is not an evangelical tool.  It is life.
-Know yourself.  Go to a counsellor.
-Lead yourself.
-Know others.
-Lead others.  It must go in that order.
-It takes a band of brothers to push you to do hard things.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

"If you can't do the good you would, do the good you can."

Are you stuck?
You were going to write a best-seller, headline a tour, go to grad school, refurbish a house, adopt a kid, and the list goes on.
So the opportunities just haven't "presented" themselves yet.

So I ask myself, "am I willing to do the things that I would do if I really wanted to do the things I want to do?"  What I mean is this.
The dream is to write a book...the first step is to start a blog and post regularly.
The dream is to be a great husband...the first step is to take her on a hot date like the early days for Valentine's day.
The dream is to have rock hard abs...sit ups, right now.
The dream is to be a professor...the first step is to teach a Bible study.
The dream is to make disciples...the first step is to make a friend.