Thanksgiving|Intolerance [v9]

NOVEMBER 1999
(Yes, there were two this month)

GREETINGS — On November 26 people all across the U.S. will celebrate Thanksgiving Day. It is in memory of the first settlers who came to begin this new society.

The Pilgrims set ground at Plymouth Rock on December 11, 1620. Their first winter was devastating. At the beginning of the following fall, they had lost 46 of the original 102 who sailed on the Mayflower. But the harvest of 1621 was a bountiful one. And the remaining colonists decided to celebrate with a feast–including 91 Indians who had helped the Pilgrims survive their first year. It is believed that the Pilgrims would not have made it through the year without the help of the natives.

Let’s give thanks for all that we have. All the comforts of living in  America, especially here around one of the ‘richest’ counties in the country, the relative peace we have here, the abundance and variety of food we have available, and the ability to worship God without persecution or the threat of losing your life, as is the case in many countries.

Most importantly, let’s have an ‘attitude of gratitude’ for WHO we have in our lives, for they have been placed there by God to help us to develop a relationship with our ‘best friend’…. Him.

Blessings….
Mark

LIFE’S DEEP THOUGHTS (v9) for NOVEMBER 1999
(NOTE: Please send your ‘thoughts’ to me at: mbesh@ameritech.net)

Thanx for some of this edition’s material IS GROWING!!! — I am glad to organize and distribute more ‘stuff’ if y’all send it to me…Thank you’s to:

Richard Bachman
Lezlie Besh
Terry Longo
Rollie Mossberg
John Waskin

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THANKSGIVING WEATHER FORECAST

Turkeys will thaw in the morning, then warm in the oven to an afternoon
high near 190F. The kitchen will turn hot and humid, and if you bother
the cook, be ready for a severe squall or cold shoulder.

During the late afternoon and evening, the cold front of a knife will slice through the turkey, causing an accumulation of one to two inches on plates. Mashed potatoes will drift across one side while cranberry sauce creates slippery spots on the other. Please pass the gravy.

A weight watch and indigestion warning have been issued for the entire area, with increased stuffiness around the beltway. During the evening,
the turkey will diminish and taper off to leftovers, dropping to a low of 34F in the refrigerator.

Looking ahead to Friday and Saturday, high pressure to eat sandwiches will be established. Flurries of leftovers can be expected both days with a 50 percent chance of scattered soup late in the day. We expect a warming trend where soup develops. By early next week, eating pressure will be low as the only wish left will be the bone.

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TERRIBLE DAY TURKEY

The turkey shot out of the oven and rocketed into the air;
It knocked every plate off the table and partly demolished a chair.
It ricocheted into a corner and burst with a deafening boom,
Then splattered all over the kitchen, completely obscuring the room.

It stuck to the walls and the windows, it totally coated the floor;
There was turkey attached to the ceiling, where there’d never been turkey
before.
It blanketed every appliance; it smeared every saucer and bowl;
There wasn’t a way I could stop it; that turkey was out of control.

I scraped and I scrubbed with displeasure, and thought with chagrin as I
mopped,
That I’d never again stuff a turkey with popcorn that hadn’t been popped!

–Author unknown–

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EVERYDAY THANKSGIVING

Even though I clutch my blanket and growl when the alarm rings, thank You, Lord, I can hear.  There are many who are deaf.

Even though I keep my eyes closed against the morning light as long as
possible, thank You, Lord, I can see.  Many are blind.

Even though I huddle in my bed and put off rising, thank You Lord, I have
the strength to rise.  There are many who are bedridden.

Even though the first hour of my day is hectic, when socks are lost, toast
is burned, tempers are short and my children are so loud, thank You, Lord, for my family.  There are many who are lonely.

Even though our breakfast table never looks like the pictures in magazines
and the menu is at times unbalanced, thank You, Lord, for the food we have. There are many who are hungry.

Even though the routine of my job is often monotonous, thank You, Lord, for the opportunity to work.  There are many that have no job.

Even though I grumble and bemoan my fate from day to day and wish my
circumstances were not so modest, thank You, Lord, for life.

–Author unknown–

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The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their troubles.

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THANKSGIVING USA

The fun of Macy’s Parade and football games; family get-togethers and friends; and who can forget the wonderful food–turkey, stuffing, mom’s favorite cranberry salad, grandma’s pumpkin pie! By the end of that wonderful day, we’re ALL stuffed turkeys!

I LOVE Thanksgiving–it’s one of my favorite days of the year. Bitter sweet memories of a mom and dad at our dinner table, now banqueting with the King; funny memories of my first turkey, complete with photo to prove it; praiseful memories of all-church choirs in a festival of praise on Thanksgiving Eve.

And then it’s over–for another year. I’d really like to sustain it for a life full of thanksgiving year-round. Wouldn’t you? Especially on days when I’m stressed and tired–weary and upset. Not a thankful bone in my body. Can I celebrate then? Hardly, unless His Word abides deep within my heart, and I can pull from its resources into my hurting, unthankful world.

Now THAT gives me an idea! Thanks-LIVING verses to warm my life, to lift my spirit, to encourage and enrich–long after Thanksgiving is over. And so, since like me, you’ll probably be turkey-stuffed big-time, I’ll not stuff you with any more words. Instead, I’d like to share with you God’s Word for your life–on Thanksgiving Day–and every day of the year!

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God–not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” [Ephesians 2:8-10 KJV]

Thanks-LIVING–it’s YOUR way to give Him thanks for LIFE! And that’s just a word…or two, from HIS heart to yours!

–Author Unknown–

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THE TOP 10 THANKSGIVING-THEMED MOVIES

10. To Kill A Walking Bird
9.  My Best Friend’s Dressing
8.  Casserolablanca
7.  The Fabulous Baster Boys
6.  12 Hungry Men
5.  Silence of the Yams
4.  All the President’s Menu
3.  White Meat Can’t Jump
2.  When Harry Met Salad
and the Number 1 Upcoming Thanksgiving-Themed Movie…

1. The Wing and I

–Chris White–

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BreakPoint Commentary #91103 – 11/03/1999
“God’s Instrument” : The Story of Squanto
by Charles Colson
http://www.breakpoint.org

Most of us know the story of the first Thanksgiving–at least, we know the Pilgrim version. But how many of us know the Indian viewpoint?

No, I’m not talking about some revisionist, p.c. version of history. I’m talking about the amazing story of the way God used an Indian named Squanto as a special instrument of His providence.

Historical accounts of Squanto’s life vary, but historians believe that around 1608–more than a decade before the Pilgrims arrived–a group of English
traders sailed to what is today Plymouth, Massachusetts. When the trusting Wampanoag Indians came out to trade, the traders took them prisoner, transported them to Spain, and sold them into slavery.

It was an unimaginable horror–but God had an amazing plan for one of the captured Indians–a boy named Squanto.

Squanto was bought by a well-meaning Spanish monk, who treated him well and taught him the Christian faith. Squanto eventually made his way to England and worked in the stables of a man named John Slaney. Slaney sympathized with Squanto’s desire to return home, and he promised to put the Indian on the first vessel bound for America.

It wasn’t until 1618–ten years after Squanto was first kidnapped–that a ship was found. Finally, after a decade of exile and heartbreak, Squanto was on his way home.

But when he arrived in Massachusetts, more heartbreak awaited him. An epidemic had wiped out Squanto’s entire village.

We can only imagine what must have gone through Squanto’s mind. Why had God allowed him to return home, against all odds, only to find his loved ones dead?

A year later, the answer came. A shipload of English families arrived and settled on the very land once occupied by Squanto’s people. Squanto went to meet them, greeting the startled Pilgrims in English.

According to the diary of Pilgrim Governor William Bradford, Squanto “became a special instrument sent of God for [our] good . . . He showed [us] how to plant [our] corn, where to take fish and to procure other commodities.”  He “was also [our] pilot to bring [us] to unknown places for [our] profit, and never left [us] till he died.”

When Squanto lay dying of a fever, Bradford wrote that their Indian friend “desir[ed] the Governor to pray for him, that he might go to the Englishmen’s God in heaven.” Squanto bequeathed his possessions to the Pilgrims “as remembrances of his love.”

Who but God could so miraculously convert a lonely Indian and then use him to save a struggling band of Englishmen? It is reminiscent of the biblical story of Joseph, who was also sold into slavery–and whom God likewise used as a special instrument for good.

Squanto’s life story is remarkable, and we ought to make sure our children learn about it. Sadly, most books about Squanto omit his Christian faith.  But I’m delighted to say my former associate Eric Metaxas has just written a children’s book called “Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving.  I highly recommend it.

It will teach your kids about the “special instrument sent of God”–who changed the course of American history.

[Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving can be ordered on-line from BreakPoint at the following link: http://www.pfmonline.net/products%5D

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PILGRIMAGE

We are pilgrim people, a people who have decided never to arrive, a people who live by hope, energized not by what we already possess but by that which is promised: “Behold, I create new heavens and a new earth.” There is no moment of delight in any pilgrimage like the beginning of it, when the traveler is settled simply as to his destination, and commits himself to his unknown fate and all the anticipation’s of adventures before him.

–Charles Dudley Warner–

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When told to write a paper with the title: ‘What I Am Grateful for on Thanksgiving Day, a little boy wrote, “I am thankful I am not the turkey.”

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There are three ingredients in the good life:
Learning
Earning
Yearning

–Christopher Morley–

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The story is told about a lone shipwrecked survivor who landed on a lonely, uninhabited island. He managed to build a simple hut and stock it with items he was able to save from his sinking ship.

He prayed that somehow God would send someone to save him. Day by day he anxiously watched the horizon to hail any passing ships.

He was devastated when his hut caught on fire and he lost all that he had. He felt utterly forsaken by God.

The very next day a ship arrived to rescue him. “We saw your smoke signal,” said the captain.

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A Illinois man who left the snowballed streets of Chicago for a vacation in Florida. His wife was on a business trip and was planning to meet him there the next day. When he reached his hotel, he decided to send his wife a quick e-mail.

Unable to find the scrap of paper on which he had written her e-mail address, he did his best to type it in from memory. Unfortunately, he missed one letter and his note was directed instead to an elderly preacher’s wife, whose husband had passed away only the day before. When the grieving widow checked her e-mail, she took one look at the monitor, let out a piercing scream, and fell to the floor dead.

At the sound, her family rushed into the room and saw this note on he screen:

Dearest Wife,
Just got checked in. Everything prepared for your arrival tomorrow.
Your Loving Husband.

P.S.: Sure is hot down here.

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ADVERSITY

Adversity has the effect of eliciting talents, which, in prosperous circumstances, would have lain dormant.

–Horace–

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THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS

Happiness cannot be attained directly nor is it what we usually imagine it to be.  The only happiness man can attain is that which results from the perfect functioning of body and soul and from the accomplishment of the destiny which the order of things assigns to him.  The only means, therefore, of attaining happiness is to aim at the widest possible fulfillment of life.  It is useless to pursue happiness as an end in itself; when life  succeeds as a whole, happiness appears as a by-product.

Alexis Carrel — Reflections on Life

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Justice – When you get what you deserve

Mercy – When you don’t get what you deserve

Grace – When you get what you don’t deserve

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IN vs. INTO

Being IN something doesn’t mean you’ll get anything OUT OF it.

The only way you’ll ever get the most OUT OF it is if you are totally INTO it.

–Rob Gilbert–

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THE GAME

A businesswomen and a lawyer are seated next to each other on a flight from LA to NY. The lawyer asks if she would like to play a fun game? The businesswomen, tired, just wants to take a nap, politely declines and rolls over to the window to catch a few winks. The lawyer persists and explains that the game is easy and a lot of fun. He explains, “I ask you a question, and if you don’t know the answer, you pay me $5.00, and vise versa.”

Again, she declines and tries to get some sleep. The lawyer, now agitated, says, “Okay, if you don’t know the answer you pay me $5.00, and if I don’t know the answer, I will pay you $500.00.” This catches the her attention and, figuring there will be no end to this torment unless she plays, agrees to the game.

The lawyer asks the first question. “What’s the distance from the earth to the moon?” The businesswomen doesn’t say a word, reaches into her purse, pulls out a $5.00 bill and hands it to the lawyer. Okay says the lawyer, your turn.

She asks the lawyer, “What goes up a hill with three legs and comes down with four legs?” The lawyer, puzzled, takes out his laptop computer and searches all his references, no answer. He taps into the air phone with his modem and searches the net and the library of congress, no answer.
Frustrated, he sends e-mails to all his friends and coworker, to no avail.

After an hour, he wakes the blonde, and hands her $500. The businesswomen says, “Thank you”, and turns back to get some more sleep. The lawyer, who is more than a little miffed, wakes the blonde and asks, “Well, what’s the answer?”

Without a word, the businesswomen reaches into her purse, hands the lawyer $5.00, and goes back to sleep.

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THINGS THAT REMIND ME OF GOD

God is like General Electric
He lights your path.

God is like Bayer Aspirin
He works wonders.

God is like Hallmark Cards
He cared enough to send the very best.

God is like Tide
He gets out the stains that others leave behind.

God is like VO-5 Hair Spray
He holds through all kinds of weather.

God is like Dial Soap
Aren’t you glad you know Him?
Don’t you wish everyone did?

God is like Sears
He has everything.

God is like Alka Seltzer
Oh, what a relief He is!

God is like Scotch Tape
You can’t see Him but you know He’s there!

God is like The Copper Top Battery
Nothing can outlast him.

God is like American Express
Don’t leave home without Him!

–Author Unknown–

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Opportunity’s favorite disguise is trouble

–Frank Tyger–

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AN ODDITY…OR AN ‘ODD DAY’

Friday, November 19th, 1999 (or 11-19-99) was a very ODD day. All of the digits were odd.  The last day when all the digits were odd was just two days before that: Wednesday, November 17th, 1999.  The numerical format for Wednesday was 11-17-1999…

However, the next odd day after that will be 1-1-3111—which is well over a thousand years away, which we will never see (at least in our present bodies!)….

So, now you have a reason to celebrate…as [you have had] your last odd day on Earth !!!!

–Rollie Mossberg–

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Comedian Broderick Rice dialed the Psychic Friends Network:
They said: “Who’s calling?”
He said: “You tell me.”

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A little boy opened the big and old family Bible with fascination, looking at the old pages as he turned them.  Then something fell out of the Bible and he picked it up and looked at it closely.  It was an old leaf from a tree that has been pressed in between the pages.

“Momma, look what I found,” the boy called
“What have you got there, dear?” his mother asked.
With astonishment in the young boy’s voice he answered,
“It’s Adam’s suit!!”

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REAL COMMUNICATION

Trust is built when we are willing to risk the vulnerability of entering into deeper communication. Can we be hurt by making ourselves vulnerable?  Oh yes. But the alternative is a superficial marriage at best and an unsatisfying one at worst.

Greenfield commented, “In recent years old oil and gas wells in parts of Oklahoma and Texas have begun to produce again. Those old wells extended five to ten thousand feet underground and then
played out. But with increased prices for gas and oil providing additional incentive and with better drilling equipment, oil-field drillers have now gone to levels around thirty thousand feet deep
and have struck it rich. There’s a lot more than black gold and gas at the deeper levels.” ( p. 47). Your effort to dig deeper into a relationship may produce a “dry hole,” but it can also produce rich
rewards which are of much greater value than black gold, gas or even diamonds. Are you willing to take the chance?

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It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.

–Frederick Douglass–

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What are you afraid of?  What would cause you to turn down a job promotion? a leadership role in your church or school? responsibility for a task or project?

We all face some kind of fear each day.  How we face that fear may determine the direction of our lives.  If we face it head on and make a positive decision to overcome that fear, we will grow from it.

If we choose to let fear control us then we are letting our weakness and not
our strength control our lives.

–Charles Hodge–

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It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who get the credit.

–Harry S. Truman–

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The preacher was wired for sound with a lapel mike, and as he preached, he moved briskly about the platform, jerking the mike cord as he went. Then he moved to one side, getting wound up in the cord and nearly tripping before jerking it again. After several circles and jerks, a little girl in the third pew leaned toward her mother and whispered, “If he gets loose, will he hurt us?”

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FOR NOAH’S FLOOD, A NEW WAVE OF EVIDENCE

By Guy Gugliotta
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 18, 1999; A1

Here are some excerpts from the article:

Scientists have discovered an ancient coastline 550 feet below the surface of the Black Sea, providing dramatic new evidence of a sudden, catastrophic flood around 7,500 years ago – the possible source of the Old Testament story of Noah.

A team of deep-sea explorers this summer captured the first sonar images of a gentle berm and a sandbar submerged undisturbed for thousands of years on the sea floor. Now, using radiocarbon dating techniques, analysts have shown that the remains of freshwater mollusks subsequently dredged from the ancient beach date back 7,500 years and saltwater species begin showing up 6,900 years ago…..

… An apocalyptic deluge followed, inundating the freshwater lake below the dam, submerging thousands of square miles of dry land, flipping the ecosystem from fresh water to salt practically overnight, and probably killing thousands of people and billions of land and sea creatures, according to Ryan and Pitman…..

…The flood, the underwater coastline and the likelihood that ancient settlements lie on the submerged plain have added a new dimension to an already ambitious project.

The region’s main archaeological attraction has always been the Black Sea itself, composed mostly of dense Mediterranean salt water that immediately plunged to the bottom of the freshwater lake when the Bosporus gave way 7,500 years ago.

Ever since, the less dense water on top has acted as a 500-foot-deep lid on a 7,000-foot-deep oxygen-free abyss – a watery wilderness where scientists suspect there may be 7,500 years of shipwrecks preserved in almost pristine condition…..

… Still, he said, there are plenty of “relic surfaces” near Synope, where the water simply rose quickly to submerge intact whatever lay below. Ballard’s sonar sweeps this summer found a gentle coastline “frozen in time,” he said.

“In a perfect world you’ll see a fence,” Ballard said, or maybe a stockade or even a house. And there will likely be plenty of artifacts, because “when the flood came, people just had to run.”

To read the entire article, go to:
http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/world/A13897-1999Nov17.html

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Get something to say that completely captivates your mind and your soul, then go out and say it in the most provocative, intelligent manner possible. Mix it with humor, goodwill and love and you’ll have the time of your life, all your life.

Norman Vincent Peale

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They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.

Carl W Buechner

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The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their troubles.

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BreakPoint Commentary #91108 – 11/08/1999
Conversion Controversy : Are Christians Intolerant?
by Charles Colson

When Pope John Paul II made plans to visit India last week, Hindu groups made a bizarre demand: They insisted that the head of the Roman Catholic Church declare that Christ is NOT the only route to salvation.  One Hindu leader explained why: “An ideology that condemns all others to eternal hell,” he said, “is selfish, exclusionist, and promotes hatred.”

Since when did bearing witness of Christ turn into promoting “hatred”?

We hear the same criticism here at home, as well. Last September, during the Jewish high holiday period, the Southern Baptist Convention published a booklet urging Christians to pray for the conversion of Jews everywhere.  Jewish leaders and others were outraged. As one newspaper columnist wrote, “These conversion efforts are reminiscent of the Middle Ages, when the Church burned at the stake anyone who refused to convert.”

Praying for someone is like burning him at the stake?

And it’s not just Hindus and Jews who take offense these days at the very idea of Christian evangelism.  The Southern Baptist Convention has also angered Muslims by suggesting that Christians pray for their conversion.

How times have changed.  It used to be understood that Christianity is a universalist religion, one that claims to be true for all people–in contrast to pagan religions, which were often tied to a particular place or ethnic group.  And since it is a religion for all humankind, Christianity is by nature a proselytizing religion–one that seeks to convert others by sharing the Good News.

But in today’s intellectual climate, people are offended because they have rejected the notion of any universal truth–at least in the area of religion.  Objective truth is found, if anywhere, only in science; in matters of religion and morality, all we have is subjective faith and belief.  So, there can be different truths for different groups–or in the words of law professor Phillip Johnson, writing in Touchstone, knowledge is considered “relative to particular interpretive communities.”

Thus, to try to persuade others of universal truth claims is regarded as an insult.  In today’s postmodernist world, the attitude is: I have my truth, and you have yours, and for you to intrude on mine is a violation of courtesy.

Christians have to understand that when we preach the Gospel today, those listening will slot our message into postmodernist mental categories: They will regard Christianity as one more non-rational, subjective belief system.  Hence, to try to persuade others of our beliefs is taken as an offense against
the peace.

In this way, the traditional ideal of tolerance has turned into INtolerance–where Christianity’s universalist claims are denounced as “selfish, exclusionist, and promot[ing] hatred.”

Christians face a huge apologetics task in order to preach the Gospel in today’s world.  Before we can persuade people that Christianity is true, we must first explain the very nature of truth.  We must explain that we are not talking about a private, subjective experience, but about a truth that is
universally valid and rationally defensible. Our God is a god of creation, who created every one of us in His image.

It would be easy to get angry at those who would deny us our right to exercise our own faith.  Instead of getting angry, we ought to gently explain that we pray for them because we love them.

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Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

–Mark Twain–

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The best cure for insomnia is to get a lot of sleep.

–W. C. Fields–

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TENDER HEARTS

The proud heart is too filled with it’s own noise. God seldom speaks in that booming, sepulchral voice that we so easily picture. He is capable of it – but wants us to be quiet and listen. Frightened children tend to be very quiet. But they are often listening for signs of danger. When they hear the voice of their Mom or Dad speaking to them, they become calm and listen for more reassuring words. Their focus shifts from the perceived danger to the comfort and safety their parents provide for them. As adults, we can allow the business of life, and the din that goes with it, to crowd out that quiet
voice. I often find out that God was either simply trying to slow me down, or He had something to impress upon me when I am home sick. It would be so much easier if I would simply stop on my own, and listen – keeping my heart tender toward Him.

–Mike Hoskins–

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What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?

–Robert Schuller–

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PSYCHIATRY

If you were to take the sum total of all the authoritative articles ever written by the most qualified of psychologists and psychiatrists on the subject of mental hygiene – if you were to combine them, and refine them, and cleave out the excess verbiage – if you were to take the whole of the meat and none of the parsley, and if you were to have these unadulterated bits of pure scientific knowledge concisely expressed by the most capable of living poets, you would have an awkward and incomplete summation of the Sermon on the Mount.

–James T Fisher and Lowell S Hawley–

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THE SEVEN AGES OF MAN

Spills
Drills
Thrills
Bills
Ills
Pills
and
Wills

–Richard Needham–

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Diamonds are nothing more than chunks of coal that stuck to their jobs.

–Malcolm Forbes–

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A little girl named Georgia tended to have very definite opinions and to express them vigorously. Her Uncle Greg, noticing this, commented, “Georgia, fools are certain; wise men hesitate.”

“Are you sure about that, Uncle Greg?” asked Georgia.

“Yes, my girl! I’m certain of it.”

–Eric W. Johnson–

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TOP BUMPER STICKERS SEEN AROUND THE WORLD

* If You Can Read This, I’ve Lost My Trailer.
* Honk If Anything Falls Off
* Cover Me, I’m Changing Lanes
* He Who Hesitates Is Not Only Lost But Miles From The Next Exit
* I Haven’t Lost My Mind, It’s Backed Up On Disk Somewhere
* If You Can Read This, Please Flip Me Back Over..
(Seen Upside Down, On A Jeep)

–Received from Paul Calvert–

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There is no medicine like hope, no incentives so great, and no tonics so powerful as the expectation of something better tomorrow.

–Orison Sweet Marden–

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FOUR STEPS TO ACCOMPLISHMENT

Plan purposely
Prepare prayerfully
Proceed positively
Pursue persistently

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There is a choice you have to make,
In everything you do.
And you must always keep in mind,
The choice you make, makes you.

–Author Unknown–

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This poem talks about the problem of using a spellchecking program on a computer. The first stanza says:

I have a spelling checker
I disk covered four my PC
It plane lee marks for my revue
Miss steaks aye can knot sea.

The words are spelled correctly, but they aren’t the words to convey the message of the writer. It’s proof positive that if you’re looking to the wrong source for correctness, then you aren’t right.

–Our Daily Bread–

(Note: I also used Microsoft Word 98’s GRAMMAR checker–there were NO suggestions!)

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One thing’s for sure–life’s always going to keep us off balance with its unexpected problems. That’s a given. What’s not preordained is our response. We can choose to be frustrated or fascinated.

–Rob Gilbert–

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Nothing is so bad that some good may not come of it.

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CHECKING METERS

Two gas company servicemen, a senior training supervisor and a young trainee, were out checking meters in a suburban neighborhood. They parked their truck at the end of the alley and worked their way to the other end. At the last house an older woman was looking out her kitchen window watching the two men as they checked her gas meter.

Finishing the meter check, the senior supervisor challenged his younger coworker to a foot race down the alley back to the truck to prove that an older guy could outrun a younger one.

As they came running up to the truck, they realized the lady from that last house was huffing and puffing right behind them. They stopped and asked her what was wrong.

Gasping for breath, she replied, “When I see two gas men running as hard as you two were, I figured I’d better run too!”

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You get the best effort from others not by “lighting” a fire beneath them, but by “building a fire within.

–Bob Nelson–

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I believe it was Ernest Hemingway who first used the phrase, “Growing strong in the broken places.” The idea behind these words is that where a bone is broke and heals, it becomes the strongest part of the bone.

The same is true of our broken places-where we have been hurt, have fallen or failed. When we bring these to Christ for his healing, his strength is then made perfect in and through our weaknesses. This is certainly true in ministering effectively to other people. They are helped, not through our brilliant logic nor persuasive speech, but through the sharing of our struggles, and how, with God’s help, we have overcome. It is a case of one beggar showing other beggars where to find bread.

–Dick Innes–

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THE CHANGE [2 Corinthians 5:17]

Well I got myself a T-shirt that says what I believe/
I got letters on my bracelet to serve as my ID/
I got the necklace and the key chain/
And almost everything a good Christian needs, yeah/

I got the little Bible magnets on my refrigerator door/
And a welcome mat to bless you before you walk across my floor/
I got a Jesus bumper sticker/
And the outline of a fish stuck on my car/

And even though this stuff’s all well and good, yeah/
I cannot help but ask myself…/

What about the change?/
What about the difference?/
What about the grace?/
What about forgiveness?/
What about the life that’s showing/
I’m undergoing the change, yeah/

Well I’ve got this way of thinking that comes so naturally/
Where I believe the whole world is revolving around me/
And I got this way of living that I have to die to every single day/
‘Cause if God’s Spirit lives inside of me, yeah/
I’m gonna live differently…/

I’m gonna have the change/
I’m gonna have the difference/
I’m gonna have the grace/
I’m gonna have forgiveness/
I’m gonna live a life that’s showing/
I’m undergoing the change/

What about the change?/
What about the difference?/
What about the grace?/
What about forgiveness?/
I want to live a life that’s showing/
I’m undergoing the change/

–From the “Speechless” album by Stephen Curtis Chapman–

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Hope you enjoyed some of these insights—share them with your friends and colleagues—so we can have a larger ‘pool’ to receive from, and more to share with!

Also, remember to include your name as the “source,” if some of this wisdom is of your doing—I would like to give credit where credit is due!
Mark

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