I remember when Starbucks was not even a budget category. Who would have considered giving people coffee for Christmas. "Hey Dad, here is your favorite tub of Folger's." PS -- Guatemala is the tops for me.
Picked up a book at Half-price -- Decision Making and the Will of God: A Biblical Alternative to the Traditional View by Garry Friesen. A model on being responsible, applying wisdom, and recognizing the freedom we have to choose. With the cultural focus on individual fulfillment we can get so wrapped up in determining what our "calling" is that we forget to use the basic tools that surround us -- common sense, mature counsel, evaluation of the circumstances, His word, and the desires of our heart.
I`m down in Mexico City for a couple of weeks. The air is smogy and I`m trying to get used to the altitude--8700ft. Having just come from Panama, which is sea level, I find myself trying to catch my breath a lot. Hopefully that will pass after a few workouts. I`m trying to figure what do on the weekend. Taxco looks interesting--the city of Silver. Adios and paslo bien un noche.
In 2002 I came across a Krupps II Primo espresso maker at a garage sale for $25.00. Here is an autopsy"
source A rough estimate of the savings, disregarding the time value of money: $2.75 for a jackuccino breve; 5 days a week; 52 weeks a year; 90% of the time $643/year less materials: coffee--about 1 bag a month $9.00; Cream--- about $2.99/week ($263)
That comes to about $380 avoided each year for my coffee affection.
"Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana." Groucho Marx I just came back from a writer's conference, where my wife spoke on blogging. She not only inspired the attendees, but she also inspired me to get back in the swing of writing. For me it is not about readership, it is about writing, which leads to communication. It's been about one year since the last post, but seems like longer. I've been to Asia and, thankfully, back. I've returned to tending tomato and pepper plants. I started a compost pile. I've watched my kids become wiser and smarter. I feel like I've grown a few inches professionally. My wife and I are at a place of control(mildly) over our lives. It's been a great year, not that it has not been filled with fits of horror. Does that sound bad? Well life does bring tribulation, even when everything is going well and bearing fruit on all sides. There is always a dark place, always something that you know "could" stand between you and God. Yet, His grace remains. So though I've been a year away from blogging, I have not been a year away from life. If it were a comic strip it would look something like this from last year:
and something like this now.
Still on my knees, but hands held high.
I will also credit Marie Chapain with giving a great motivational message on getting back in the creative groove. Sometimes we need a little push. I've focused a lot this last year on my career, which is a big part of my life. However, it is not the complete me.
If you have ever put your hand to the soil of a vegetable garden or just wanted to maintain your lawn, you know the importance of water. Over the last five years, I've only had one year where I did not have to mow my lawn, because rain fell consistently each week. Not having water when and where you want it is an inconvenience that dates back to ancient times. The solution was irrigation. For a history of irrigation see Wikipedia. Ministry can be like an irrigation channel to a dry and desolate world. It may be wisdom, encouragement, mercy or salvation, but it is water from on high that we transport.
Proverbs 21:1 THE KING'S heart is in the hand of the Lord, as are the watercourses; He turns it whichever way He wills.
Between spending four weeks in Panama and losing my Typepad password, I've finally made it back for a post. What did I do in Panama? Besides work I got to play with some Cappucin monkeys
and visit Isla Grande Island. Nice...... I've made a list of the best food ever: An excellent Cilantro Lime soup at Machu Pichu, the best lobster(slow cooked) at a little place on Isla Grande, and for the grand finale- try the pizza at Napoli's. Yes, I said the pizza. I ordered the thin(delgado) crust with pepperoni and mushrooms. There is a little spice in the sauce that was good enough to make me finish off a 15" by myself on more than one night. That makes my favorite pizza places Napoli and Pizzeria Uno. But with Napoli being in Panama and Pizzeria Uno in Fort Worth, I need to find a place in Austin. Also started a good read, Managing in the Next Society, by Peter F. Drucker, which I will do post on forthcoming. Bienvenidos.
"Obscurity and competence- that is the life that is best worth living." Mark Twain
"There are lots of things we don't want to be, but it is what we desire to be that drives us." me
What are you competent at? Most people answer in terms of talent or abilities-- they can play guitar; do math in their head; repair a vacuum cleaner; replace the brakes on a car. But, what about as a Christian? Are we competent Christians useful to the Lord's service? Or, are we consumed with folly having to be constantly chastised for our foolishness? Are we improving to become more effective? This is what I'm pressed with pursuing over the next few months. Not just to learn more, but to be more fruitful.
Psalm 85:12 12 Yes, the LORD will give what is good; And our land will yield its increase.
“To get profit without risk, experience without danger, and reward without work, is as impossible as it is to live without being born.” AP Gouthey
God gave us Christ freely, but how does He reward us? Hebrew 11:6 And without faith it is
impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe
that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
We have to do something to be rewarded. Remember the parable of the talents? Matthew 25: 20The man who had
received the five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said,
'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.'
master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been
faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.
Come and share your master's happiness!'