Working on a Dream




Sunday, September 30, 2012

Charlie & Me. (2012)

Charlie is a camera hog.

My favorite pair of boots!  My old ruggeed L. L. Bean kicks.

Can you say black / white (AND grey sideburns!). 

Charlie told me to tell you that this is one of his favorite poses.

Did you know that one of Charlie's nicknames is "Good-boy?" 

Bon-fire anyone?

He smiles on demand too.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Look at what these Great Parents did for their Son!

They built a halloween costume around his wheel chair!

Share this if you think his parents are Awesome!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

When God gives you a Bloody Nose.

TitleThe Acorn And The Pumpkin
AuthorJean de La Fontaine

Once there was a country bumpkin
Who observed a great big pumpkin
To a slender stem attached;
While upon an oak tree nourished,
Little acorns grew and flourished.

"Bah!" said he. "That's badly matched."
"If, despite my humble station,
I'd a hand in this Creation,
Pumpkins on the oaks would be;
And the acorn, light and little,
On this pumpkin stem so brittle
Would be placed by clever Me."

Then, fatigued with so much thought, he
Rest beneath the oak tree sought. He
Soon in slumber found repose
But, alas! An acorn, falling
On the spot where he lay sprawling,
Hit him--plump!--Upon the nose.

Up he jumped--a wiser bumpkin.
"Gosh!" he said. "Suppose a pumpkin
Came a-fallin' on my face!
After all, if I had made things,
I'll allow that I'm afraid things
Might be some what out of place.

The meaning of the acorn and the pumpkin?

God knows better than we do. Before the man took a nap under the acorn tree, he mocked God's creation.  He stated that a tree as giant as an acorn tree surely would have been better fit for something large, like pumpkins, to grow on.
However, he later found that he was mistaken.
An acorn fell on his nose, causing it to bleed, making him realize that had it been a pumpkin, he would not have been as fortunate.
That is why at the end of the poem he says,"God knows His business after all, no question!", because he realized he does not know more than God does. and he should not question Him.

"Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!"
-Romans 11:33-

Thursday, September 20, 2012

So Pastor, What's Your Point?

Good old Dr. Prutow discussing preaching.

I am thankful for the time I spent studying under this man of God.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

A Lack of Leadership: Today, you started smoking so you can have more breaks at work.

So you hate your job.
And the best part of your day is your smoke break -and you don't even smoke.

One of the main reasons why people are so disgruntled at work is directly related to motivation (or lack thereof) in there workplace. 
If you are a leader, then you know how important it is that you keep your workers internal fire lit. 
Below are 10 obstacles that need remedied in the workplace that will help your workers put down their bubble gum cigarette and go back to work (with a smile on their faces). 

10 Obstacles to Work Gratification:
1.  Disagreement with work goals
2.  Duplication of work
3.  Others belittling you/your work
4.  Unwarranted criticism
5.  Unchallenged standards
6.  Lack of recognition
7.  Inconsistency from leadership/management
8.  Job goes on and on and on and on ...
9.  Jealousy
10. Lack of clarification/goals

Take a look at the list again.
Better yet. Write it down. 
Now go to your team and give the list to every one of them and then schedule a time to talk individually & then colletevely. 
Go with an open heart and I guarantee 2 results from your actions:
1) You will have won over the majority of your teams heart.
2) You will have paved the way for a better, more motivated workplace. 

-Do you see any demotivators on the list that you have personally dealt with in your workplace?
-Is the list lacking?  Would you add anything to it?

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Q: What is the best way to abort a Puppy?

2 Questions:
-My 10 month old lab recently finished her first heat. Is there a way to tell if a pure bred dog got her pregnant?
-I am hoping she is not because I only want pure bred labs.
-Is there a method to abort dog pregnancies?

Answer #1: 
Pregnancy (gestation) is 62-63 days in dogs. Because of its short duration there has been no reliable pregnancy test developed for use in dogs. What we can do is feel (palpate) her abdomen. After the 28th day the fetuses are big enough for us to give an answer. What we cannot know is whether they are pure bred Labs until they are born. The greater question is: How important is it to know?

Answer #2: What about finding good homes for cross bred puppies? If the puppies are of mixed ethnicity there will be plenty of deserving homes willing to adopt a multicultural dog. And a mixed bred litter now will have no influence on your dog’s ability to deliver purebred Labrador Retrievers later. That assumes, of course, that Mr. Right will not be concerned about a woman with a past.

Answer #3:
Abortion of the litter? Yes this is possible using injections that are given in the veterinary hospital. It would require your dog to stay for a few days. The process is uncomfortable for the dog and may carry some risk. It is not recommended and is generally unnecessary. You can instead choose to let her deliver the babies. As soon as they are 7-12 weeks of age they should be easy to place with good families. In fact many people prefer mixed bred dogs because of their lower tendency for birth defects.

Repulsive right?


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Adultery... Jealousy... Feeling dirty yet?

1.Feeling or showing envy of someone or their achievements and advantages.

2.Feeling or showing suspicion of someone's unfaithfulness in a relationship.

Q:  Does God get jealous

I have had this question come up before, so I decided to write about it and just point people to this post.  My light bulb finally began to glow about a month ago when after I started explaining the meaning behind "God's Jealousy" the person's forehead started to bleed. It was then that I decided to stop verbally explaining things like this and just jot it down here so that people can read it at their own leisure.

OK?  So Does God get Jealous?  In a word, Yes.

Let's start with a word study:
The root idea in the Old Testament for the word "jealous" is to become intensely red.
It refers to the changing color of the face or the rising heat of the emotions.  The word carries an intense zeal or fervor over something important. In fact, both in the Old and New Testament, the word for jealousy many times is translated as  “zeal.”
The Scripture paints a picture of God's jealousy being synonymous with a zealous / fervor for the things that He loves.

---God is always zealous (eager) to protect what is precious to Him.

One thing that is especially important to Him in both the Old and New Testament is the loyalty he demands from His people.

"For you are a holy people to the LORD your God; the LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth." (Deut. 7:6)

"But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God's OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were NOT A PEOPLE, but now you are THE PEOPLE OF GOD; you had NOT RECEIVED MERCY, but now you have RECEIVED MERCY."   (I Peter 2:9-10)

We can illustrate this point by just thinking of a common marriage:  
A man with any morals never wants to share his wife with another, in the same way God does not want to share your loyalty with anything or anyone else.
God is not into a divided heart. He expects exclusivity.
By now you should have figured out that this "jealousy" is not the kind that so often is portrayed in our modern, glossy society. 
---There is in fact such thing as a healthy jealousy-- for instance, when a person pursues another lover outside of their marriage, you should expect the spouse being cheated on to become jealous.   

The same can be said about the idols in your own life.  When you worship other gods, you commit spiritual adultery, and God gets jealous.  He gets jealous because He is zealous for your love.  Plain and simple. 
This is why James writes, "You adulterers and adulteresses, know you not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."  (4:4)

James is merely highlighting the fact that if you claim that your life is bonded with Christ, then when you go out living like a prostitute, you are committing spiritual adultery.  And God gets jealous because you belong to Him.

So does God get jealous?       

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

If you could read my mind right now...RAW & Unedited.

If you could read my inmost thoughts tonight you'd find a lot of mixed up feelings.

At the tip of my heart and mind is an aching for my son. He has been on my mind a lot lately. Earlier today, someone referenced his death as a mystery (in terms of what caused it).
"Was it a cord compression or a tiny blood clot?"

My response?
Tears. They streamed.

I didn't plan on that by the way.

I just sat there and looked at the person and cried. I imagine it was pretty awkward for them, but I knew
better. The tragedy of my son Anthony's death will take the worlds strongest man by his throat, pick him up and throw him around like rag doll.

We lost so much January 19th.

Sometimes I look at my wife and thank God that her good days outweigh her bad ones. And I don't pretend to underscore the reason for that; Jesus.

That's right.
The tender love and compassionate arms of the King. See, after going through hell, it's easy to recognize heaven. Jesus, the mighty one, is actually drawn to people like Christen. This is why I don't hesitate to reflect all glory and praise right back to Him.

And this means in the good and the tragic.

Jesus, the mighty King.
Jesus, the compassionate One.

I don't know why You took Anthony.
I miss him now.
I imagine him as he would be presently....

Take good care of Him for me and his mom.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

5 for $5: Help "Now I lay me down to sleep" charity

Many have followed the tragic loss our our baby son Anthony back in January 2011.

From that day forward, I vowed to help the charity that supported us during our hardship.  Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep was the organization that came to the hospital and took the precious pictures of our son at NO cost.  

Every so often, I send them a check to show my support.
--This ensures that they do for others what they have done for Christen and I.

One of the ways you can help is simply by becoming a follower of this blog

Everyday, you and I look for ways to make a difference, to add value.
This is why I am giving you the opportunity to sow into something great.
See, many of you have asked me, "how can I help you or this charity?" over the years... Here's how:
Take 5 minutes of your day and follow this blog and I'll take 5 dollars out of my pocket and donate towards Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep.

It's called 5 for $5.

It's a simple, easy way for you to remember baby Anthony and help other families enjoy the services provided by Now I lay Me Down to Sleep.

Here is how:
1.  On the top left-hand on my blog there is a space for you to "follow"
2.  Follow the simple steps.
3.  5 minutes later, your all done!

Thank You from the bottom of our hearts

Friday, September 7, 2012

My interview (with a DEAD guy).

The Greatest General, by Mark Twain:

A man died and met Saint Peter at the gates of heaven.
Recognizing the saint’s knowledge and wisdom, he wanted to ask him a question. “Saint Peter’, he said, “I have been interested in the military history for many years. Tell me, who was the greatest general of all times?”
Peter quickly responded, “O that is a simple question. It’s that man right over there.”
The man looked where Peter was pointing and answered, “You must be mistaken. I knew that man on earth, and he was just a common laborer.”
“That’s right,” Peter remarked, “but he would have been the greatest general of all time-if he had been a general.”

---What a remarkable lesson.

Shortly after reading Twain's story, I started wondering what it would be like to interview the "would-be-general."

I imagine myself sitting across from him in a fluffy cloud, face to face with the following questions:

Q: What held you back from pursuing your dreams while you were on earth?

Q: Did you have a passion in your heart for the things of the military? If so, why didn't you enlist?

Q: Where there people in your life that held you down? Didn't believe in you?

Q:  Piggybacking on the last question, where there people in your life that believed in you? That encouraged you to go after your dreams?

Q:  When you were alive, did you ever feel a sense of destiny?  Like God had a plan for your life?

Q:  How's the food up here? 

Q:  Followed up by, do all dogs really go to heaven?  I'm quite serious.

Q:  Finally, if  you could do it all over again, live your life again on earth, how would you live differently?

I have no idea what the answers would be to those questions. 
But what I do know, is that if you find yourself reading this, you still have a chance. 

-A chance to live.  -A chance to engage

What a terrible thing it would be to find out in heaven that you could have been the worlds all time greatest __________ . 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Who Was Haym Solomon? The history of the One Dollar Bill.

Do you know who he was?

On the rear of the One Dollar bill, you will see two circles. Together, they comprise the Great Seal of the United States. The First Continental Congress requested that Benjamin Franklin and a group of men come up with a Seal. It took them four years to accomplish this task and another two years to get it approved.

If you look at the left-hand circle, you will see a Pyramid.

Notice the face is lighted, and the western side is dark. This country was just beginning. We had not begun to explore the west or decided what we could do for Western Civilization. The Pyramid is uncapped, again signifying that we were not even close to being finished. Inside the Capstone you have the all-seeing eye, an ancient symbol for divinity. It was Franklin 's belief that one man couldn't do it alone, but a group of men, with the help of God, could do anything.

'IN GOD WE TRUST' is on this currency.

The Latin above the pyramid, ANNUIT COEPTIS, means, 'God has favored our undertaking.'
The Latin below the pyramid, NOVUS ORDO SECLORUM, means, 'a new order has begun.'

At the base of the pyramid is the Roman numeral for 1776. (MDCCLXXVI)

If you look at the right-hand circle, and check it carefully, you will learn that it is on every National Cemetery in the United States .

It is also on the Parade of Flags Walkway at the Bushnell, Florida National Cemetery , and is the centerpiece of most heroes' monuments.

Slightly modified, it is the seal of the President of the United States , and it is always visible whenever he speaks, yet very few people know what the symbols mean.

The Bald Eagle was selected as a symbol for victory for two reasons:
First, he is not afraid of a storm; he is strong, and he is smart enough to soar above it.
Secondly, he wears no material crown. We had just broken from the King of England .

Also, notice the shield is unsupported. This country can now stand on its own.

At the top of that shield there is a white bar signifying congress, a unifying factor. We were coming together as one nation.

In the Eagle's beak you will read, ' E PLURIBUS UNUM' meaning, 'from many - one.'

Above the Eagle, we have the thirteen stars, representing the thirteen original colonies, and any clouds of misunderstanding rolling away. Again, we were coming together as one.

Notice what the Eagle holds in his talons. He holds an olive branch and arrows. This country wants peace, but we will never be afraid to fight to preserve peace. The Eagle always wants to face the olive branch, but in time of war, his gaze turns toward the arrows.

An (untrue) old-fashioned belief says that the number 13 is an unlucky number. This is almost a worldwide belief. You will almost never see a room numbered 13, or any hotels or motels with a 13th floor.

But think about this:
America, which relies on God (not a number) to direct and lead, boldly chose:
13 original colonies,
13 signers of the Declaration of Independence ,
13 stripes on our flag,
13 steps on the pyramid,
13 letters in 'Annuit Coeptis',
13 letters in ' E Pluribus Unum,'
13 stars above the eagle,
13 bars on that shield,
13 leaves on the olive branch,
13 fruits, and if you look closely,
13 arrows.
And finally, notice the arrangement of the 13 stars in the right-hand circle.

You will see that they are arranged as a Star of David.

This was ordered by George Washington who, when he asked Haym Solomon, a wealthy Philadelphia Jew, what he would like as a personal reward for his services to the Continental Army. Solomon said he wanted nothing for himself, but he would like something for his people. The Star of David was the result. Few people know it was Solomon who saved the Army through his financial contributions ...then died a pauper. Haym Solomon gave $25 million to save the Continental Army, money that was sorely needed to help realize America’s –our-freedom and independence from England .

Therein lies America ’s Judeo-Christian beginning.
Pretty cool, huh?

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Jesus, did you really say that??

Scene 1:  I find it encouraging, Jesus that 75 percent of Americans, when asked, identified themselves as Christians.
Scene 2: My figures are a bit lower.
Scene 3: So people can think they're believers and not really be? How sad.
Scene 4: Wearing a cowboy hat doesn't make you a cowboy, Ann.

Matthew 7:21-23
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’