Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
The old man looked down at the youngster and replied: "I've thought a lot in my lifetime, and the secret can be summed up in four words:
1) The first is "Think." Think about the values you wish to live your life by.
2) The second is "Believe." Believe in yourself based on the thinking you've done about the values you're going to live your life by.
3) The third is "Dream."Dream about the things that can be, based on your belief in yourself and the values you're going to live by.
4) The last is "Dare." Dare to make your dreams become reality, based on your belief in yourself and your values.
Can you guess the man who said this? I think it is pretty good, with the addition of, "Trust in God" as the fifth key point and "Serve Others" as the sixth. Not long ago I posted some research about the importance of serving in keeping us alive, well and energized. Serving allows us to grow and heal and the more we grow and heal the more we can serve others.
This, of course, comes directly from God who gave us the ability to do all six of these important things. God created us in His image and for His purposes. This includes the ability to think, believe in ourselves, dream and dare to take risks.
I am currently reading a good book on the importance of ideas to nations and people. It is "The God that did not Fail" by Robert Royal. I suggest that you read it soon.
The man who replied to the little boy with four ideas was Walter E. Disney, a fellow who was gifted with great ideas, energy and creativity.
Friday, July 25, 2008
Thursday, July 17, 2008
WONDERFUL article(s)! As always! I heartily concur with your assessment...although I am but a "wee" 50, I do not like being termed "Senior Citizen". It sounds like the last year of citizenship to me (like the last year of high school)I have in fact, (no doubt in utter vanity)
I am NOT signed up for AARP benefits because of the way they refer to me in their letters. I know my refusal will not change things, but maybe, if ENOUGH OF US refuse, they'll start to listen and realize we're still here, we're still "kicking" and we're still valuable to society.
I feel like the elderly Inuit who has been put on the ice flow to go downstream and die...NOT READY FOR THAT!Blessings to you and your work with Seasoned Believers!
Paula Clare commented on the last post but I thought it deserved its own place on my blog. Thanks, Paula.
After three decades of painstaking research, the Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck believes that the answer to the puzzle lies in how people think about intelligence and talent. Those who believe they were born with all the smarts and gifts they’re ever going to have approach life with what she calls a “fixed mind-set.” Those who believe that their own abilities can expand over time, however, live with a “growth mind-set.”
Guess which ones prove to be most innovative over time.
“Society is obsessed with the idea of talent and genius and people who are ‘naturals’ with innate ability,” says Ms. Dweck, who is known for research that crosses the boundaries of personal, social and developmental psychology.
“People who believe in the power of talent tend not to fulfill their potential because they’re so concerned with looking smart and not making mistakes. But people who believe that talent can be developed are the ones who really push, stretch, confront their own mistakes and learn from them.”
In this case, nurture wins out over nature just about every time.
I am kicking off a new ministry at age 70 and I am looking for Seasoned Believers who are not afraid to keep experimenting, growing and learning. I see far too many closed minds in Christianity, especially among Christian leaders.
For example, Christianity Today has some helpful articles and papers on ministry. One is on developing Adult Ministries but they continually use terms like Seniors, Older Adults, Second Half of Life, Aged, etc. Does anyone want to be so identified?
I have registered the name Seasoned Believers (TM) because it focuses on people's attributes and experience not their biology. I am often asked what age a person must be to "join" us. It is not in years of life but experience of living in Christ.
My focus in experience, wisdom, insight, calling and spiritual nurture. As Ms. Rae-Dupree mentions in her article, I want people whose life experiences have opened their eyes to possibility thinking. I want people who think outside the boxes of life and who expect God to break into those boxes.
This is what makes the difference in whether we can really make a difference and I want to make a difference.
Thought #I. By Ben Stein
Ben Franklin summed it up well. In times of stress, the three best things to have are an old dog, an old wife and ready money. How right he was.
Thought #II. By Ben Stein
I am far from glib about the economy. It has a lot of pitfalls facing it. As workers and investors, we know that many dangers lurk in our paths.
But so far, these things have always worked themselves out and this one will, too. In the meantime, they say that falling in love is wonderful, and that the best is falling in love with what you have.
Ben Stein is a lawyer, writer, actor and economist. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
When Believers are in the midst of a revival, a reformation or an awakening they often miss it. One reason is that humans get so caught up in the affairs of daily life that they miss God’s Spirit moving. It is easy to get confused about when God is on the march when we do not see any evidence of revival in the culture. We are surrounded by so much junk in the media and so much trauma in society that it appears as if God's Spirit has been removed from our country.
But make no mistake about it, God is moving in a big way. In my view, He has a plan to make some great changes. In fact, revivals and awakenings are all about change so conflict rather than peace is the hall mark of the Spirit. Think back about the stories in the Bible. Every time God was about to make a big move we hear about the debauchery and evil in the society.
I am sure you remember the stories about the conflict between David and King Saul. David was chosen and anointed by God to be the future King of Israel. This made the current King Saul very jealous. The result was an all out war by Saul and his troops on God's anointed successor. They were out to murder him.
The times were desperate. It looked pretty grim for David. We know how the story ends but David and his friends did not know the final chapter during those terrible times. David had no army to fight against the overwhelming odds of Saul’s mighty army but he believed God's word and set out to fight Saul.
David was able to recruit some mighty warriors to fight with him. In I Chron 12:32 we can read how one group called, "The men of Issachar" threw their lot in with the future King. They took a huge risk. Had they lost the fight, everyone who supported David would have been killed.
Why would they take such a risk? A verse in I Chronicles tells us why.
"The men of Issachar were people who understood the times and knew what Israel should do." This is what is always needed for God's people to succeed. They must understand the times and the seasons. They need discernment. God inspires those people we call entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs understand the times and know what it is that the church should do. They know what to do and how to do it at the right time in the right way. Now is the right time for Seasoned Believers to rise up and change the world. We live in a unique time with unique opportunities to make a difference in media, politics, business, education, family life, medicine and the arts.
There are millions of Seasoned Believers who are followers of Christ and filled with His Spirit. These men and women are wise in their professions and skilled in the Word of God. All they need is an opportunity to join with other like minded Believers and release their talents and gifts.
See my web page for more information.
“Most cutting-edge ministries in the church for the past 40 years have been aimed at reaching the younger generations. And if something does not change in our churches, this age wave will pass by with millions never connecting with the church, and with millions never responding to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“Most leaders admit that they have not even thought about the issue, much less strategically planned to reach this older generation.”" As a result of the negligence of Christian leaders, "About two-thirds of the 76 million boomers are unchurched, which means they attend church no more than twice a year."
These builders and boomers have the largest accumulated wealth of any group in America’s history. But their wealth is not restricted to money and materials. They also have an enormous reservoir of experience in education, science, industry, business and practical Christianity.
This age wave includes tens of millions of men and women who want to make a difference in their older years. They have pursued many paths to happiness, and the unchurched boomers tell us that none have proved satisfactory. These new "senior" adults do not perceive themselves to be older adults, and any organization that communicates to them that they are old will quickly lose their allegiance.
In Greater Cincinnati we have almost 800,000 thousand men and women over age 45. If 2/3 are unchurched, and I think they may be, it is a huge untapped group of almost 600,000 people who are just waiting for some church of para-church organization to care for them.
Wednesday, July 09, 2008
Take a look at this article and see what you think.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Monday, July 07, 2008
The long hair and beard did not weigh much.
I made a bad mistake this morning. I got on the scales. Over the past two weeks I have gained five pounds. That is not a good thing.
The photo is the Sweeten Family of Tim, Karen, Gary and Julia plus Aaron Bates.
I do love to party but even that must be done in moderation. As a wise man once said, "A second on the lips but forever on the hips."
My daughter Julia put up a special blog for my 70Th birthday. It is great. http://happybirthdaygary.wordpress.com/ Many of my friends from around the globe wrote nice, affirming comments on it. I do appreciate all those good memories. Thanks for leaving out all the bad memories of my weight gains and bad moods. They had a lot of grace in them.
It had also several old time photos of me, my parents, siblings and nuclear family. One of the photos shows my mother with a very small waist line. When we looked at it we were shocked. Mother fought her weight my entire lifetime to the best of my memory and I have waged an often losing battle with candy and ice cream as well.
Habits are hard to break. Why? because we like the behavior but dislike the results. I love to eat, especially with my family and friends. When we get together we laugh, tell stories and tease everyone. But, the longer it goes the more we eat. And, you know what that leads to.
Over the past few months we have celebrated the birthdays of Julia, Lily, Timothy, Gary, Hazel and the United States of America. We also celebrated Mother's Day and Father's Day along with the anniversary of son Tim and wife Shelley. In a few weeks we travel to Maryland for Th 50Th anniversary of my brother and sister in law and the anniversary of daughter Julia's handy husband Dave.
I am amazed I have gained only five pounds.
The most recent study released by Barna and his group, however, may be a bit more positive. The one American "Thoughts about Views on Holy Books" says:
People’s responses demonstrate America’s singular connection to Christianity, according to George Barna, the researcher of faith trends who directed the study.
"Most Americans consider the Bible to be the word of God - and do not believe any other document fits that description. People associated with other faiths are much more likely to view the Bible as sacred literature than Christians are to view any other document to be holy," Barna noted.
What do you think about this research? Hit Comments and leave your ideas about ways to educate Christians about the Bible or reasons why we Yanks are so illiterate.
Contact Barna at:
The Barna Group, Ltd.1957 Eastman Ave. Ste BVentura, California 93003United StatesVoice: (805) 639-0000Fax: (805) 658-7298
Sunday, July 06, 2008
Saturday, July 05, 2008
Notice how Jack is taking off like the Road Runner to stage left after hugging
Grandma and Papa while they are the focus of every one's attention.
Friday, July 04, 2008
Thursday, July 03, 2008
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
Sweeten Life Systems
P.O. Box 498455
Cincinnati, Ohio 451249
Truth separated from experience always remains in the realm of doubt.
There are few things that destroy the soul more readily than unnecessary dependence on others.