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Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

This past weekend I had what I would call an eye opening moment concerning self esteem and interpersonal relationships.  My pre-teen daughter had a couple of friends overnight.  These girls spend many hours together at school but this was the first time that they had an overnight together.  All three are high energy girls and each one is a bit of a diva.  So, I didn’t expect the weekend to go without a hitch. However, as the girls got comfortable I started to hear comments and partial comments that made me stop and listen a little more closely.  The reason for that?  Continue reading:  Write Where You Are

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Baby Boomers, do you remember the old-time style of witnessing?  You know, standing on the corner or knocking on the doors of strangers and telling them the good news about Jesus, the son of God?  It was truly a commitment to the instruction of scripture, for the children of God, to go into the world and spread good news.

The Good News meaning that Jesus was born the son of God, come into the world to offer hope to a lost and dying world that they might accept him, repent of their sins and grow in their relationship with God the Father and have eternal life with him in Heaven, instead of living a sinful life of destruction and pain.

I have admiration for those who can and have witnessed in that way door to door or on the streets.  It is not for everyone however, and it is not the only way to win souls.  Society has changed and in some ways not for the better.  Personal safety issues are part of the equation.  It simply is not safe to send teens or young people into settings where they are encouraged to step foot into the homes of strangers where they may, or may not, be wanted.  Today’s secular world has little respect for life, or for Christian values.

Today, that type of witnessing still happens on some level…but, times have changed in the way that we deliver the good news.  We still need to honor and perform the great commission (the task of evangelizing) around the world; however, our approach must be different to be considered highly effective.  People’s hearts are hard and their sins are proudly displayed and openly encouraged by the misguided members of our society.

We have to bring the message to where they are; and, many people are online. Continue reading here: Write Where You Are

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Do you ever look around you and become discouraged by the standards with which people live their lives either in business, or on a personal level?  I am a people watcher  by nature.  I can’t help it.  It seems to me that as a society we are slipping in the area of personal conduct; we need to raise the standards of acceptable behavior.  Not only do people not treat each other well, they often don’t expect to be treated well themselves.  A lot of that is due to the fact that many people don’t even realize or accept the fact that they deserve to be treated better and everyone else is just going their own way.

It has become a way of life to do what feels good at the moment and not worry about having a high standard of conduct.  Live and let live…don’t make waves…be politically correct at all times; even at the cost of what you believe to be the appropriate conduct, right?  Wrong…lowering the standards of acceptable behavior can lead to… If you would like to finish reading this post click here: Writewhereyouare

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         Ok, I dont understand this whole financial mess…I admit that.  I am no financial genius.  However, I do know that if you keep spending money that you dont have…you go deeper in debt.  How in the heck is the government going to get money from people who dont have it to give?  From taxpayers….correction…from taxpayers who have JOBS.  What about all of those people who dont have JOBS  or will soon be loosing their JOBS?  The American family is in crisis.  Many dont have jobs or they have to have more than one part time job to make ends meet.   Some don’t even have homes because they have lost them to foreclosures.  Some of their family members dont have jobs or can’t make enough to pay their bills.  But when you are barely making it…you can’t help anyone else out in a meaningful way either.  The Government financial recovery plan (mess) is mirroring our personal lives…they just dont know it yet!  Still, some of the leaders are using fear to try to get people to put their stamp of approval on their plan of action; they are saying that this might not be the right answer…but we have to do something or else!

         Obama’s treasury chief has announced that this country needs 2 trillion dollars to save the banks.  This is on top of the bailouts that have so far shown little return on the investment for the average American citizen.  Where is this whole thing going to end?  Why not give the money to the citizens and let them dig themselves out of their own very deep holes first?   That in turn might just have the added benefit of allowing them to pay off their loans and homes to those banks and businesses that made the bad loans in the first dang place!

          We are being told that all of this lending and loaning may or may not work….that they might make mistakes.  But that doing nothing would be a catastrophe.  How do we know that?  Maybe those businesses and banks should go under.  After all….once this money is loaned to these businesses and banks…they are going to expect tax payers to go into debt once again with these banks and businesses to circulate the money.  Who in their right mind is going to create an even bigger debt load on themselves with such uncertainty hanging over this country’s head?

        After President Obama’s treasurer spoke the Dow Jones dropped 3.5%.  This is traumatic news to everyone.  Confidence is more than shaken….it has suffered severe trauma.  We may never recover from this extreme mess as a nation.  This isn’t some meaningless recession.  We are bleeding money and we dont have the confidence in our leaders, our banks, our businesses to recover from it. 

         Former Presidential candidate, Senator John McCain calls this plan “generational theft”.  He says we are stealing from future generations their hard earned dollars and laying on them debt of incredible proportions.   He is right.  Where will it end?

           The Government thinks it is going to help everyone out by creating JOBS and bailing out banks and certain industry giants.  Helloooooooooooo…is anybody home out there?   How in the world are they going to do this?  By hitting the taxpayers out even more than they have already.  So far, no one has had a solution that has made a positive enough impact to change the direction of this massive financial failure!  What makes them think that throwing more money into the mix is going to make things better?  Can a government file bankruptsy…cause that is what it feels like is happening here…what is the old saying….borrowing from Peter to pay Paul?

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       As a person living in the midwest, in one of the coldest, snowiest winters in the last 25 years…i have to say i was irritated when i read that since President Obama moved into the White House the thermostat has allegedly gone up.  For a man who made it part of his campaign to encourage Americans to sacrifice for the world environment and to take on a personal responsibility regarding climate changes; I am offended by an article that i read today that says the Oval office is like a tropical hot house, warm enough to grow orchids in.  Someone needs to hold this administration accountable in these types of areas…turn down the heat on President Obama.

       Across our nation right now, many Americans are without electric or typical normal heat sources because of an ice storm, that is going to take weeks to fix.  This is during some truly challenging temperatures as our country transitions between winter and spring.

       Part of the perception of the recent, more relaxed environment in the Oval office…meaning that visitors no longer have to wear suit jackets when they enter in like the former administration; is really more about personal comfort levels.  It isn’t mainly about being relaxed in that room as much as it is about it being warm; so that wearing a suit and tie would be really uncomfortable.  While I applaude the more informal feel to this Presidency…I have to say that even the White House staff and aides have commented on the temperature change; including his chief of staff, David Axelrod who  allegedly, made the statement about the orchids growing in there.

         The article I read said something to the effect that even though President Obama comes from Chicago…he was born in Hawaii, and he likes being warm.  Well, no fake…most of us don’t enjoy being colder than is comfortable…but , what about that personal sacrifice he was talking about before?  I dont want to bust his chops on this or any other issue just for the sake of it…but…this subject is a little close to home when my own family has to keep the furnace set on 58-60 degrees because of the necessity of the high cost of heating our home.

        Another, more important reason this is so maddening is that in my home state…there have been several people who have frozen to death.  A man by the name of Marvin E. Schur, 93 years old, froze to death recently in Bay City, Michigan because the electric company put a limiter on his electric service and his home power was shut off…effectively causing his heating source to stop working.  He died…come on…was that President Obama’s fault….no!  However, when i hear polyanna remarks justifying his higher temperature on the thermostat in the Oval office; it makes me angry to know that others are SUFFERING AND DYING when there are others who have so much and are wasteful with it.  It is not right.

        So please President Obama…you have so many other more important things on your plate…turn down the heat in the White House so that your actions match your words and your call for personal responsibility.   That way, those who would otherwise be inspired by you and your goals of helping our nation turn towards more green living and a more positive use of our energy sources can get on board without having to defend your conflict of words and actions!  Be an inspirational leader so that you can have a powerful impact on our country with responsibile energy use.

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     Ok, ready for some more, I can’t believe it…what were they thinking kind of blog post?  It is better to give than to receive (as long as you are going to KEEP receiving bailout money).  Outrageous news reports of an alledged 12 day trip to Vegas for the top employees for Wells Fargo & Company. 

     In the past years, this has been an alleged tradition of all expenses paid which included many different extravagant perks such as helicopter rides, private concerts, food and entertainment…etc.  While companies are made to look good to their employees by giving away so much; to the rest of us…the companies who do this kind of thing are making a mockery out of the purpose of the bailout money for those companies who have been failing to be financially responsible. 

        How can these corporations, banks and such that have been receiving bailout money from taxpayers still be so blind?  Can they not understand the depths of the resentment of the American people for this financial chaos that we have all been plunged into?  Surely, if these behaviors continue…they will go out of business and deservedly so. 

        The thing is…today’s news of the 12 day planned trip was defended by the company…until there was an uproar and they cancelled the trip.   If that is what it takes, to prevent further financial misuse of the bailout funds, negative peer pressure and pressure from the media, to change their behaviors; then, we are just going to have to be more vocal when we are made aware of an abuse of the American’s financial investment in their companies.

          Let the other industry leaders be forewarned…American tax payers are fed up with the mess that has been made.  I think those at the top of the companies that have received bailout money should be legally responsible for any misuse of those funds.  Let’s see some accountability here by our leaders!

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     I can’t believe all of the different things that this inauguration appears to mean to each person that i talk to or read about.  Some people are moved to tears by the inspiration of it all.  Some people are in awe of the historical nature.  For others it is more personal; they have invested so much of their own personal hopes and dreams into the candidates for the office of the President of the United States.  Observing the inauguration is a very personal and a very public thing.  The swearing in of the 44th President of the United States is a solemn occasion and is observed by all in a variety of ways.

      For quite some time there has been indiviual stories on the news about individuals who have made the trek to view the ceremonies in person…some have borrowed money to get there or made amazing sacrifices to fund the trip.  Others who are content to watch from their homes watch avidly….others in dismay.

      Supporters of candidates who did not win the nominations have differing views and opinions.  I watch and look for conflicting emotions on the faces of those who could have been in a different place during todays proceedings..and yet…i see pride, joy and excitement in their faces.

       Watching the former Presidents and the mixture of emotions and memories flood their visage is truly something to see.  Their wives remembering their time in the spotlight…reflecting on the changes since their moment…you can see the strength that it takes to endure the pressures and the passage of time.

        It is no simple time …the respect of the responsibility, the solemness of the swearing in…the honor…the pride…the exaltation…it is such a mixture of the past, the present and the future.  Truly…can feel the waves of deeply held beliefs and expectations.  For this one day, we can enjoy the coming together as a nation.  There will be time on another day to examine the differences, the disappointments, the frustrations and the solutions to problems that exist…For now…today is momentous!  I am thrilled that God is acknowledged as the ultimate authority of our nation…I pray that President Barack Obama submits his actions to be wholly acceptable to the only person who he should be in submission to at this point and that is God himself.  May God bless our nation…and may we live up to the standards that he expects from us.

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     President Elect Barack Obama has started out the first day of the inaugural celebrations by taking the train.  He is recreating the trip that President Lincoln took in 1861.  It is a 137 mile trip from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C.   It is a deliberate attempt to rally the citizens of the United States.  Obama has called on the American public to rebuild this country and he called for a new declaration of independence.  He acknowledged the issues facing this country and said that we need to make a new declaration of independence not only in our country but also in our personal lives.  This day is a historic day in our nation and one that needs to be viewed as the kick off to a new beginning.

         The things that made this country great when it began can help us to regain it’s strength and pride of achievement if only we can get back to the basics and build upon those things that are the foundation of our country…namely perserverance and ideology according to President Elect Barack Obama. 

       The train stopped and picked up Sen. Joe Biden and his wife in Wilmington, Delaware with just a small misstep.  Joe tried to get on the train to greet Barack and Michelle Obama…but they were not in the caboose when he opened the door.  With a trademark self-effacing grin…he stepped back off of the train when informed that the Obama’s would step off the train to the platform for a meet and greet.  Slightly awkward…but very “real person-like” moment…not one overly rehearsed and performed like many public figure robots.

        Sen. Joe Biden also is acknowledged for his pledge to raise his boys in Wilmington, Delaware  after his first wife and daughter were killed in an accident.  He has a rich history of his dedication of riding the Amtrack train back and forth from Wilmington to Washington daily so that he could keep his commitment of raising his sons in his hometown.

     January 2oth is coming upon us.  There is excitement and hope…and an awareness of the work ahead that must be accomplished to put this country back on the right rails to greatness.

    

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      It is only a matter of days before we see the United States presidential switch…it will be; out with the old and, in with the new moving day done in style.  This is quite an ordeal for the White House staff…the transition must be accomplished within a matter of about 6 hours; during the swearing in ceremony, and all that goes along with it.  Before all of that begins, the current President and his wife have a traditional  sit down tea with the incoming President and his wife.

       Did you ever stop to think about the quick transition that the actual living quarters must go through during this time period?  The way that i understand it, the furniture and personal belongings must be swapped out…from one presidential family, to the next.

        There are only two elevators to handle the workers in charge of the ebb and flow of the personal belongings of each family.  This is no easy task.  For when the new leadership steps into the residence for the first time after the switch…it is to appear as if it is home; for that is what it will be, their new home for the next four years.

         Just this past week it was announced that Barack Obama’s mother in law, Marian Robinson, will be moving in with the new first family.  Wow…that was a surprise.

           Although his mother -in- law took off time to help with the grandchildren during the presidential campaign…I don’t think that too many people thought that she would be moving into the White House, once the family took residence.  I am sure that this will be a wonderful thing for Malia and Sasha to have their grandmother right there with them.  It will help to ease their transition to a new life and all of the personal changes that will go along with that change.  Living in the family quarters, I am sure can be lonely for children of the President.  Having Grandma Marian there will be a wonderful gift for the family.  

       On the other hand, there will be those who question who pays for her stay.  I could be wrong…but, it seems to me that I remember a news program once talking about a previous presidency and how the first family pays for all of their own food ,and such, when they are eating in residence.  Of course, that doesn’t include all of those big public dinners that Presidents and their families are required to endure.   

         It is going to take some time for things to settle down after this transfer of power takes place.  How long will it take before the White House feels like home to the new first family do you think?  I know every time i have moved in the past it took a good couple of weeks before i felt like i wasn’t staying in someone else’s home.  If some comfort can be found it will be a blessing in the early days as I am sure it will take quite a bit of time to get used to the loss of privacy that this new phase of life will require. 

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     Five pirates from Somalia drowned after they left the ship that they had been holding for ransom for approximately two months.   The pirates small boat capsized and sank along with the money.   The ship that the pirates had captured was the Sirius Star and the ransom was for approximately $3 million dollars.  Three other alleged pirates spent hours swimming to land. 

       The pirates had to have been congratulating themselves about receiving that amount of money.  In Somalia, the people are very poor…most of them are living on humanitarian aid.  Many of these ships that have been targeted, by pirates, have been in this area in the Gulf of Aden.   Somalia is a country that has not had proper governmental leadership since the early 1990’s.  It must be awfully tempting to see all of these ships travel through the area loaded with multi-million dollars of  crude oil and not see it as a way to grab their share of the money for themselves.  Piracy has become a huge problem.

         Just this past week the United States Navy has announced that they will be utilizing an anti-piracy taskforce to combat the issues such as the hostage situations that face the ships that must travel through those international waters.

          Piracy in today’s world is not the piracy of the movies.  It is not some swashbuckling, romantic way to see the world.  It is quickly becoming a form of terrorism that attempts to hold the world of commerce hostage to pay up or be caught in the web of the pirates that feed off of the traffic that must pass through on their way to pick up and deliver merchandise from one nation to another. 

         One has to wonder, do the people who contemplate becoming pirates consider the possibility that they could end up on the bottom of the ocean right along with their stolen treasure?  Maybe some of the area nations could come up with a way to build up the infrastructure of Somalia so that the temptation to take from those who have so much would no longer look like a good way to earn a living to those who have so little!  Stealing is not a good option.  But those nations who are rich in natural resources could invest some of their money into those countries who seem bent on surviving any way that they can.

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