Sunday, August 30, 2009

Work--100 Words



Work.

Yes. It’s a four-letter word.

More some days than others.

I’m heading back to work after a mandatory week off. I’m not alone. All of my co-workers have experienced four weeks off. You know, due to the economy.

The stimulus plan didn’t help our company.

Neither did slumping sales.

Not sure what the answers are for the future. The only certainty is that we have one more week of leave to take before 2010 rolls around. And then, three more weeks off in 2010.

So, pardon me as I try to come up with some different words for work.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Childhood--100 Words




Childhood.

My earliest memory of childhood is of being in church when I was 3 or 4.

I had good childhood memories. But, I was glad when it was over.

Isn’t it funny how children don’t want to stay children?

I see it in my son. He’s always imitating his mother or me. He’s climbing. Reaching. Running. Forgetting he’s only 18 months old. Oh, and he falls a lot too.

But, he always gets up and runs again.

It’s sad. Too many adults forget how to run, climb, reach, fall, and get back up again.

Maybe childhood wasn’t all bad.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Deep Thoughts--100 Words



Deep thoughts.

I read them all the time on Facebook.

Professors. College presidents. Wise pastors. And, so many others who share deep thoughts. Intimidates me at times. Makes my thoughts seem shallow.

I wonder why I don’t have deep thoughts. Seems I’m far more focused on how I’m going to paint the wall that is 15 feet tall, leading upstairs. How am I going to do that without breaking my neck?

See, those are my deep thoughts.

That and thinking about how to be a better husband and father. Those questions do take up my brain cells and deep thoughts.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Boredom--100 Words



Boredom.

It’s a terrible thing. It really is.

Keeps a person from focusing. Growing. Learning. Developing. Maturing.

How do you deal with boredom?

Thomas Carlyle said “I’ve got a great ambition to die of exhaustion rather than boredom.”

Now, compare that quote to the German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer who said: “Life swings like a pendulum backward and forward between pain and boredom.”

I suppose there is truth in both quotes. Who hasn’t experienced pain and boredom—and the swinging back and forth between the two. But, isn’t it a far greater goal to die of exhaustion instead of being bored?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Stinks--100 Words



“Our business stinks. But it’s picking up.”

Saw that sign plastered on garbage truck. Made me laugh.

However, most things that stink don’t make us laugh.

Death stinks. Works sometimes stinks. So does family. Unemployment. Unpaid furloughs. Not sleeping well. Bad health.

They all stink. For the life of me, not a one of them make me laugh. Not even smile.

I imagine driving a garbage truck stinks. Not the job, the garbage. I would think the only way to get through it is to develop a strong stomach or stuffy nose.

That’s easy. Getting through life. Not so easy.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Travel--100 Words



Travel.

Do you like to travel? I used to.

I’ve traveled for pleasure. I’ve traveled for work.

Too often, my work takes me away from home, usually for a night or two at the most. Hotels. Restaurants. Rental cars. Suitcases. Those become my unwelcomed companion.

In my travels, I’ve seen some exciting places. From the Atlantic to the Pacific. From Mexico to Canada. Our world is a beautiful place. God has created a beautiful world—and I can see His handiwork at ever turn.

But, I’ve decided that my favorite place to travel to is home.

To my wife.

Son.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Daddy--100 Words



Daddy.

Only 5 letters. But such a huge word. Difficult to fulfill and live. Father. Dad. Daddy.

One night a father overheard his son pray: “Dear God, Make me the kind of man my Daddy is.” Later that night, the Father prayed, “Dear God, Make me the kind of man my son wants me to be.”

Definitely, humbling words. A haunting reminder that few fathers are as good as their children think.

One thing for sure. We don’t have to worry about the kind of Father God is. God is good. All the time God is good. Yes He is.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Gossip--100 Words

Gossip.

Did you hear the latest? No? Let me tell you.

Better yet. In Christian circles, we wouldn’t dare gossip. So, what’s a sinner to do? “Can I share a prayer request with you…?”

A Jewish proverb almost got it right: “What you don’t see with your eyes, don’t witness with your mouth.”

I might improve on that proverb slightly: Whether you see it with your own eyes or not, don’t witness it with your mouth.”

I’m tired of gossip. There’s no room for it. Either my telling the latest or hearing it. Gossip is mean, ugly, and not Christ-like.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Victory-100 Words



Victory.

The elusive thrill of victory. The taste of it.

We desire victory. We long for it. We train for it. We play to win.

Yet, seldom do we taste victory. Even if we are good. We aren’t always victorious.

But, think about it for a minute. Who ever said that we would be victorious? Two football teams play for four quarters—yet only one team wins. Two baseball teams play for nine innings—only one will walk away a victor.

So, why—this side of heaven—do we think we deserve victory? Seriously. Why?

Let’s get over it already.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Backstabbing--100 Words



Backstabbing.

You know the term. Don’t you?

Probably felt it a few times? Haven’t we all.

A friend does it to us.

We do it to a friend.

Sometimes it is to tear them down. Sometimes it is to build ourselves up.

All the time it is wrong and destructive.

Les Parrot described backstabbers: “They put on a front that appears accommodating, loyal, and yes, even sacrificial. Then, without warning, they raise their knife, and by the time you see the glint of the blade, it’s almost always too late.”

I wonder what the world would be like without backstabbing.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Freedom--100 Words



Freedom.

I’ve been thinking about freedom lately. Freedom from tyranny. Freedom from oppression. Financial burdens. Governmental insanity.

I guess we’ll never know those freedoms this side of heaven—especially as it relates to government.

Gandhi said, “Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.”

Our government will never be perfect. Not even close. There are no perfect Democrats. Or Republicans. Or Independents.

There aren’t any perfect Christians either.

We keep trying. And failing. We’re only human.

So, before criticizing politicians or Christians too quickly, make sure you’ve cleaned off your own feet first.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Resignation--100 Words



Resignation.

Normally considered negative. We hear resignation as meaning quitting. Giving up. Giving in. Giving out.

But, does resignation have to be defined that way.

No.

Anne Sophie Swetchine said “resignation is putting God between ourselves and our troubles.”

I like that definition.

I often find myself needing to resign. Not giving up or quitting. But, putting God between my will and troubles.

In truth, isn’t that where God deserves to be in the first place? I have to learn to stop doing everything else first and learn to put God in first place.

I think it’s time to resign.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Professionalism--100 Words



Professionalism.

I’m struggling with seeing that these days.

As my wife has looked for employment, I’ve watched people lie to her.

No. They didn’t soft-pedal anything. They didn’t try to spare her feelings. Or bend the truth. Or tell a “white lie.”

They lied. Outright lied.

Where’s the professionalism in that?

Call me na├»ve. I’ve always thought that people who were promoted to important jobs had a certain amount of professionalism about them. So much for that philosophy.

Has it always been that way? Did I not see it? Maybe it’s shame on me. Or, maybe it’s shame on them.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Pleasure--100 Words



Pleasure.

So many meanings to that word. Some can’t be typed here. Others bring a warmth to our soul.

Today, I’m thinking about simple pleasures. Things that don’t cost a dime, but leave memories for a lifetime.

Yesterday, I took a blanket and spread it across some chairs and made a “tent.” Evan thought that was the greatest thing he’d ever seen. He sat. Laughed. For minutes at a time, he didn’t say a word—he just smiled and clapped his hands. Simple pleasure.

As we get older, why do we think pleasure only comes from things that cost money?

Friday, August 7, 2009

Quiet--100 Words

Quiet.

Shhhhh.

“Be still and know…”

“Peace, be still…”

Why does God choose to speak in the peace and quiet?

Why can’t He scream like everybody else?

Why can’t He wave His arms to get my attention?

I’d settle for that ding my computer speakers make when I get email.

But no. He is quiet. Still. Almost silent.

I have to stop what I am doing. And listen. I have to be still. Quiet.

I think this would be one time that yelling would be better.

Go ahead God. Yell your answer.

I’m listening.

Not very quietly. But I’m listening.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Waiting--100 Words


Waiting.

I’ve never been good at waiting. Ask my wife. Ask just about anyone.

Why wait when you can have it right now?

Sure, that sounds right. But, it is so wrong.

The Bible says: “They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

I’ve read those words. I’ve memorized them. But, I haven’t learned them. I know I haven’t—because I still don’t wait. I still run ahead of the Lord.

That’s why I struggle.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Judgment--100 Words


Judgment.

There’s good judgment. There’s bad judgment.

There’s sitting in judgment.

You can be judged. And, you can judge others.

How do we learn to have good judgment? How do we know what to do and not to do? What’s safe? What should be left alone? What helps? Hurts? What’s right?

Bob Packwood said, “Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment.”

I don’t think I agree with Bob. I don’t need to experience everything to know that it is bad. Some stuff is just commonsense.

Then again, it seems we’ve lost all commonsense in our world today.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Death--100 Words



Death.

These days, I am surrounded by it.

Young. Old. Some old while still young.

New bodies. Worn out bodies. Overweight bodies. Skinny bodies.

Each one died. Their heart stopped. Their lungs shut down. They died.

Some went to heaven. Some did not. I didn’t make that decision. They did.

I don’t sit in judgment. I pray for their family and offer comfort.

One thing for sure. They all met their Maker. Some were glad to see Him. Some shocked.

God didn’t make their decision for them either. They decided it. Now, they live with that choice.

For eternity. Forever.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Monday--100 Words


Monday morning jerks.

“On Monday mornings I am dedicated to the proposition that all men are created jerks” (H. Allen Smith).

Some female readers will say that all men are jerks every day. I hear you. I’ll save the time it takes to type those words.

All of us are jerks at one time or the other.

Seems to me, that being a jerk really doesn’t have anything to do with it being Monday. What’s in our heart tends to rule the day—whether that’s Monday or Thursday.

Give someone a break today. That’ll appreciate it. You’ll feel better inside.



Saturday, August 1, 2009

Kindness--100 Words



“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle” (Plato).

Ever given any thought to what Plato said?

Ever considered that the person giving you such a difficult time is really having a worse day than you?

What about that guy riding your bumper, flashing his lights, and honking his horn?

Yeah. That guy.

You’re supposed to be kind to him? Who said? At that point, should I even care what Plato said? Maybe not. But, what’s that? Oh, Jesus said something about this?

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

Now that’s tough.