Wisdom for my Sons

Month: April, 2012

Principle of sowing and reaping. 5.20.11 & 4.30.13

From Evernote:

Principle of sowing and reaping. 5.20.11 & 4.30.13

Every fact and process in Nature contains a moral lesson for the wise man…The man who sows wrong thoughts and deeds, and prays that God will bless him, is in the position of a farmer who, having sown tares, asks God to bring forth for him a harvest of wheat…He who would be blessed, let him scatter blessings. He who would be happy, let him consider the happiness of others. -James Allen

We humans exist in a permanent state of frustration when we desire to change behavior and actions without changing our thoughts. It is much Ike the farmer above who plants a certain type of seed, yet hoping somehow magically that it will yield a different harvest then what is being planted. We would look at that man and say he is a fool, yet every day we do the same thing in our minds wanting and desiring a blessed abundant life, yet we daily fill the garden of our mind with seeds of a different kind…wickedness and cursing, all to varying degrees. God is great in that…He tells us there is no hiding from what you harbor in your mind…you will become what you think. Action. My sons, guard your heart and mind for it is truly the wellspring of life…from it flowing all the issues of life. Make sure you are faithfully sowing the same seeds of thought that you are intending to reap in life…for you will never be able to separate the two.

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Sin of sloth. 7.28.11 & 4.26.12

From Evernote:

Sin of sloth. 7.28.11 & 4.26.12

"the tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers his less and less…" -Pascal

I have always wondered why sloth was always identified as one of the seven deadly sins, for I never thought it held the same danger as the others. Come to find out as, Os Guinness describes, at it’s core it is a most cursed condition, one of spiritual dejection that has given up the pursuit of God…an inner despair at the worthwhileness of life resulting in an attitude of "who cares." Sloth provides the ultimate curse for man…a meaningless existence. Action. My sons, knowing and pursuing God while taking responsibility for His intended purposes in every detail of your life, is the key to avoiding a slothful, existence. The world around you will continue to care less and less about the meaning of their existence…masking their pain by filling their days with busyness and distractions doing anything they can to keep their minds from thinking about how miserable and lost they are.

Enjoy each chapter 4.26.12

From Evernote:

Enjoy each chapter 4.26.12

Don’t long for "the good old days."

This is not wise. (Ecclesiastes 7:10 NLT)

Not everyone in life transitions well between the chapters of life. For its easy to get stuck…longing for the ‘good old days’. Friends that can’t move beyond the high school years…longing for the good old days. Newly marrieds not moving beyond their lives as singles…Parents with young kids wishing for the days when it was just the two of them…Empty nesters not transitioning well as kids move out of the house; all struggling to transition to next chapter of life thinking the joys of the past are better than the joys ahead. Action. My sons, life is hard and mentally can become easy to get stuck, but you must transition well. Be fully present in the current chapter you’re in searching out and savoring the unique joyful moments that come with each, while welcoming the added responsibilities. Your character and maturity as a man will grow stronger. Know that God designed each chapter having its own unique blessings and memories…(so funny, literally as I am typing this…little man Austin-you give me a hug good morning…and all I can think is "oh, how I am going to miss these innocent little hugs.")…how ironic; so easy to get stuck in these moments…but we must remind ourselves daily; many are the present joys of the moment that must be lived fully, but not to forget…great too are joys in the chapters to come, so we must transition well!

What’s the answer to this great tragedy? 2.24.12

From Evernote:

What’s the answer to this great tragedy? 2.24.12

There is another serious tragedy I have seen under the sun, and it weighs heavily on humanity. God gives some people great wealth and honor and everything they could ever want, but then he doesn’t give them the chance to enjoy these things. They die, and someone else, even a stranger, ends up enjoying their wealth! This is meaningless—a sickening tragedy.

A man might have a hundred children and live to be very old. But if he finds no satisfaction in life and doesn’t even get a decent burial, it would have been better for him to be born dead. He might live a thousand years twice over but still not find contentment. And since he must die like everyone else—well, what’s the use?

All people spend their lives scratching for food, but they never seem to have enough. So are wise people really better off than fools? Do poor people gain anything by being wise and knowing how to act in front of others?

Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless—like chasing the wind. (Ecclesiastes 6:1-3, 6-9 NLT)

The great tragedy of humanity; blessing of circumstance without blessing of heart. To one man God gives wealth and honor, but from him because of the insatiable nature of money and pride withholds joy in life. To another He blesses with a great family, many kids yet withholds satisfaction, keeping the man eternally distracted with the demands of life. To another He blesses with a long life, yet withholds contentment, keeping the man wandering in search of purpose and meaning. How true, in the end…what does it really matter to gain the world and loose our soul; gain circumstance and loose the heart. All humans spends their lives scratching for more…it’s our sinful nature to desire more yet never seem to have enough. So what is the answer for God’s kids to this great tragedy? Redeem our mind to rejoice in today; savoring what is in the present rather than longing for what could be. Action. My sons, don’t be the human tragedy, one who frets over outside experiences-great blessing of circumstance, but who never focuses on cultivating the heart to truly enjoy the God given gifts in daily life. Work hard to focus your attitude on being grateful and thankful always, enjoying each day…for in this you will be truly blessed.

Satisfaction and Contentment. 4.23.12

From Evernote:

Satisfaction and Contentment. 4.23.12

To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life—this is indeed a gift from God. God keeps such people so busy enjoying life that they take no time to brood over the past. Ecclesiastes 5:19-20 NLT

Where is satisfaction and contentment found? Solomon searched wide and far for it, only to realize through much trial and error that it was found not in a circumstance but instead in a condition of the heart…from which only God can give. How does one cultivate enjoyment in work and acceptance of their lot in life? For one, they fundamentally run a different race, one not measured by titles and advancement or bank accounts and estates. Instead they realize blessing…the good life…enjoyment…satisfaction…contentment…purpose…meaning is a fruitful outflow of a heart condition in right standing with God. When work is seeing as God ordained with intrinsic value, man begins to enjoying his labor because he sees that God designed satisfaction into the task only fully unlocked in a job well done. Results are nice, but the excellence and faithfulness to the process of work is where man tastes true joy. Once man discovers joy is not determined in the size of his lot, he can rejoice in what has been given rather than what he does not have. Action. My sons, in life work hard to discover satisfaction and content in a job well done. The world will tell you your joy in life is tied to your results, but God designs enjoyment and contentment into faithfulness to the process. Do this and you’ll be too busy enjoying your God given lot in life, rejoicing fully in what you have been given today to worry about what you don’t have.

Wisdom of Simplicity. 4.18.12

From Evernote:

Wisdom of Simplicity. 4.18.12

"Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity." -jazz musician Charles Mingus

They say humans are the only creatures that will actually speed up when lost. Increasingly getting more and more lost in complexities and details, while loosing all context for big picture simplicity. We do it spiritually, relationally, professionally…tending always to over complicate detailed aspects of life. Rare and valuable is a man’s ability to always keep things simple and clear, seeing how small daily details fit into the big picture, eternal context. Spiritually not over complicating the simplicity of the Gospel while growing in deeper knowledge of God. Relationally, loving simply and consistently while dealing with changing issues and challenges of people. Professionally, continually being aware of how daily decisions and habits affect big picture purpose and direction. Action. My sons, your context and perspective from which you view your daily life, will determine your ability to take the complex issues of life and keep them simple. Daily washing yourself in Gods Word is the proper vantage point to begin each day…for biblical wisdom is divine, eternal, perfect context and perspective. The more we see our life and day from Gods perspective the more the complexities of daily life slow down revealing to us a the sweet simple blessed life.

There are no ordinary things. 7.31.11 & 4.6.12

From Evernote:

There are no ordinary things. 7.31.11 & 4.6.12

"There are no ordinary things…A row of cabbages, a farmyard cat, a wrinkled motherly face, a tiled roof, a single sentence in a book–each fragments of sunlight break through dark wood, so parts of creation seen for what they are act as ‘patches of Godlight’ in the world. " C.S. Lewis, Letters to Malcolm

The art and skill of blessed living hinges greatly upon ones ability to see God in all the ordinary details of life while receiving each with a thankful heart. We long for the mountain top experiences in life, yet we forget life is defined by the routine events of the valley. The man that sees God in all things…has redeemed his life so that there exist no ordinary things. All things, no matter how mundane, bring joy and shed new light on their infinite Creator. Action. My sons, blessed, abundant living is tied directly to how much of God you see in the routine details of your life. So…if you desire to grow in your enjoyment of life…cultivate prayerfully a mind that works to see more of God and give more thanks in and for all things. This is the type of man you should long to be…for this type of man will taste and experience the truly abundant life God offers to his kids.

Sin on envy. 7.27.11 & 3.4.12

From Evernote:

Sin on envy. 7.27.11 & 3.4.12

"…we are always most vulnerable to envying those closet to our own gifts and callings." -Os Guinness

Why is it that the sin of envy lurks and hides itself in the shadows of a man’s calling. Envy being almost inescapable because calling is where giftedness and desire come together. The area of a man’s calling…Can so easily become an idol. And more so than anything envy is the great revealer of this idol…for envy festers in the heart but evidences itself much in man’s speech. For his speech discounts, downplays, and speaks negatively about another man’s successes in same area of calling and desire. Professors envy professors. Athletes envy athletes. Business guys envy businesses guys. Pastors envy pastors. Action. My sons wherever you excel in life, envy will be lurking in the shadows, resist and remove it immediately from your heart for a redeemed response acts contrary, encouraging instead of discouraging, building up instead of tearing down.

Where is rest and peace found? 3.13.11 & 3.3.12

From Evernote:

Where is rest and peace found? 3.13.11 & 3.3.12

"the proud and covetous man never have rest, but the meek man and the poor in spirit live in great abundance of rest and peace." Thomas Kempis

Pride and covetousness will not allow for rest and peace, for by it’s very nature is restlist, always defending, protecting and hoarding. The poor in spirit are comfortable in their own skin, having nothing to prove or to gain…they are truly at peace. They know who they are in Christ and that is sufficient. Rest and peace is a heart condition right before God, not a vacation or nap put on the schedule. Action, my sons…rest and peace is found in a broken and contrite spirit, pride and covetousness is present in us all, pulling us in the opposite direction of peace and blessing…pursue authentic humility and you’ll be blessed.

Life follows our aim. 4.2.12

From Evernote:

Life follows our aim. 4.2.12

"…life always follows the aim; we always take the direction of the life purpose."

What is our aim in life? What is the thing we wake up each day and set our focus and aim on? For we must have something…right? A man without aim or purpose is forever lost…stuck wandering thru life. It seems we shy away from establishing goals and the defining of purpose in the various areas of life for we hate falling short. Better to aim at nothing, hitting it everytime; then daily falling short of achieving the goal. A godly man realizes man is fallen and perfection is not attainable this side of heaven. He is not deterred, realizing the secret lies in the presence of aim (purpose), each day being off a little here and there but being far closer than if the aim did not exist. Action. My sons, know Gods purposes and design in the various areas of your life. Understand what He asks of a faithful steward waking up each day making that your aim. Don’t be discouraged when you find yourself missing the perfect execution of your goals each day…keep aiming…never stop aiming. Victory lies in the presence of purpose and aim, for it will always cast the direction of our thoughts and actions in life.