Working on a Dream




Thursday, May 29, 2014

Kissing your Crabs good-bye!

A Story:

A crab fisherman once noticed something intriguing after a successful catch one day at sea.

As he hauled in the crabs, he divided them up in buckets almost filled to the brim. On his way back to shore, the fisherman glanced down and focused his attention on one of the buckets.

Here is what he noticed:
He watched as the crabs all tried to escape but to no avail. 
What was so intriguing to the fisherman was the fact that when one crab would reach the top of the bucket, just as it was about to get over the tipping point ... another crab would grab it and pull it back in. 
This was striking to the fisherman, so he decided to watch for a bit longer and he discovered that this was a pattern for the crabs.  

His discovery was that when one crab was about to hit freedom, it was immediately pulled back in the bucket by the other crabs.

Then, the fisherman tried something different. 
He put a single crab in a bucket and watched to see how it would react. 
In a few minutes, the crab hooked its way to the top and found its way home back to the sea.

There are several powerful lessons that the crabs can teach you and I. One is that life is filled with people that resist creative ideas

When you distinguish yourself from the crowd, it will ruffle the feathers of those around you. Envy is an ugly thing, so when you set out to accomplish something new, be prepared for the people around you to start grabbing at you with their claws, trying their best to keep you down with the rest of the body snatchers.  When you come in contact with other crabs, be ready for their claws that come in the form of negativity, downgrading comments, & the desire for you to stay in the "bucket" with the others.  There is a price to pay for staying in the bucket by the way: Death.

I love the fact that the Bible tells us that we are created in God's image.
Did you know that God is far more creative or imaginative than any of us could ever be?  This means that by being an image bearer of God, you were created to be creative! This is why when you and I were little, all we did was imagine!  That is, until we grew up and people started pulling us back down into the bucket.

Advice: Don't let the other crabs pull you down.
It is time you crawled out of the bucket and into the sea.
And as you do, don't forget to kiss your crabs good-bye. 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

How I Prepared to Fail

A poem:

For want of a nail the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe the horse was lost.
For want of a horse the rider was lost.
For want of a rider the battle was lost.
For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.

The poem describes a situation in which a person fails to anticipate (or correct) some initial small issue; then, like gang green, the matter successively becomes more and more overwhelming until a disastrous outcome. Benjamin Franklin wisely stated, "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail." 

This principle is something that I had to learn the hard way several years ago during a Maundy Thursday worship service.  I was assisting in the service, and when my time to speak drew near, I boldly approached the lecturn and began to read.  Then, to my horror, I approached a word that I simply did not know how to pronounce.  There I stood, in a nervous-awkward-silence staring at the word and then looking up and watching everyone staring back at me.

With nothing left to do, the only option I had left was to pronounce the word like a chainsaw buzzing through a tree.  I felt humiliated and embarrassed.  I failed to prepare and by doing so, I prepared to fail. And failed hard is what I did.

Thankfully, I learned an important lesson from all of this; now whenever I will speak publicly I always insist on getting the information ahead of time and read through it several times. One of my favorite quotes is, "It is better to bleed more in the time of peace so that you will bleed less in the time of war."

Here is what I know, when I see someone performing with excellence, that automatically tells me that person painstakingly prepared thoroughly beforehand

What about you?
How would your life improve if you started preparing ahead of time?
Let me ask you this question, who is suffering (other than yourself) because of your lack of preparation? 

Friday, May 9, 2014

"It's because she's a mother"

Out of the French Revolution came a story of a mother who wandered through
the woods for three days with her two children, trying to survive on roots
and leaves. 

On the third day, she heard some soldiers approaching and
quickly hid herself and the children behind some bushes. The sergeant in
charge noticed the movement, so he prodded the bushes to see what was
stirring behind them. When he saw the starving woman and children, he had
compassion on them, and immediately gave them a loaf of brown bread.

The mother took the bread eagerly, broke it into two pieces and gave one
piece to each of the two children. The sergeant noted, "She has kept none for herself." 

A soldier asked, "Is it because she is not hungry?"
"No," the sergeant answered. 
"It is because she is a mother."

"A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.”

 ―Washington Irving

Saturday, May 3, 2014

The drunk & his old dog.

I read a story recently that stuck with me.  It's about a drunk, his dog and betrayal. 
Luckily, I found it online for you to read too.

"An old drunk once stumbled along a sidewalk heading for his home. His faithful dog saw him approaching and watched his every move. As he entered his home, his dog joyfully followed him. When the drunken man collapsed on the floor in his living room, the dog snuggled up to him, waiting for his master to wake up.

Suddenly, in the middle of the night, the old drunk was roused by the dog’s barking. The last thing he wanted was a barking dog! He staggered to his feet, grabbed a chair and threw it at the dog, then collapsed again.

It the morning he awoke to a shocking sight. Thieves had broken into the house in the night and stolen everything he owned —everything, that is, except a broken chair and a dead dog. His faithful friend had been trying to warn him of danger and he had killed the best friend he had."

The Bible teaches that you and I are created in the image of God.  Thus, we have a moral compass called a conscience that acts as an aid for our lives. The Bible goes on to teach us that we can actually "seer" our conscience, that is to make it callus.  A kid in my church started playing guitar recently, and he showed me some chords one day after youth group.   After about 10 minutes of playing, the tips of my fingers ached severely.  He laughed at me and then asked me to look at the tips of his fingers.  They were covered in thick calluses.  The calluses were formed from him practicing guitar, and in doing so, it took his tender fingers and turned them into rawhide. 

This is what happened to the drunk man in the story.  Over time, he became so comfortable with his conscience that he ignored it and even despised it. 
And in the end he paid dearly.

God gave you a best friend. 
It’s your conscience.