May 1, 2016

The house of delusions is cheap to build but drafty to live in. (A. E. Housman, English classical scholar and poet)

It’s easy to let your mind run away with you and to dream dreams that are fanciful, fun, and pleasing to pursue. Such dreams are of little value except for momentary enjoyment. They have no substance, and when reality sets in, they are blown away as in a windstorm. It’s better to keep our hopes in the realm of reality. Dream big but plan well.

Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans (Proverbs 16:3).

April 30, 2016

If we love our country, we should also love our fellow countrymen. (Ronald Reagan, 40th president of the United States)

When patriots talk about their country, what is it they’re speaking of? Its geography, its resources, its political system? Nations are made up of people, and Reagan was right to encourage citizens to love one another. Sounds like a biblical instruction, doesn’t it? And its good advice for all of us to follow.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart … soul and … mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:37-39).

April 29, 2016

Don’t get addicted to hearing only what you want to hear. (Dr. Henry Cloud, self-help author)

Have you ever met someone who doesn’t seem to hear anything negative. He or she doesn’t take criticism; it just doesn’t register with them. People who are like that may miss some very helpful constructive criticism that others could help them with. It’s their loss, of course, but we must not limit ourselves to hearing only those things that please us.

Whoever heeds correction is honored. Whoever heeds correction shows prudence. (Proverbs 13:18; 15:5)

April 28, 2016

Most of us know we won’t be the greatest, just don’t let us be the least. (Robert J Foster, college professor)

Most people don’t like to think of themselves as being proud. They aren’t trying to gain fame merely for the sake of the public’s recognition and applause. On the other hand, most people probably don’t want to be thought of as the least popular or talented, either. Or worse, to be overlooked altogether. We must think soberly and truthfully about ourselves.

Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment (Romans 16:3).

April 27, 2016

By changing yourself, you will change your circumstances. (Kary Oberbrunner, author and inspirational speaker)

Sometimes we find ourselves in situations we wish we could change. Maybe it’s the people we’re working with or for; they’re making things difficult, and we’d like to change them so our job or life itself would be easier. In reality, of course, we usually can’t give other people a makeover. To have peace and find joy, most often we need to work on changing ourselves.

Live in harmony with one another. … If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:16, 18).

April 26, 2016

Societies are changed from the bottom up, not the top down. (John Naisbitt, author and futurist)

This is an election year in the United States. The candidates for public office are making all kinds of promises, wanting us to believe that they, by themselves, can bring change and improvement to our society. As Naisbitt points out, however, lasting change must come from the citizens themselves. Their wholesome activity is the only hope for real change.

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2).

April 25, 2016

The one thing you can give and still keep is your word. (Church sign board)

It use to be that “a man’s word was his bond,” that is, you could trust a person to do what he promised to do. It’s a question of integrity and character. There isn’t much in life that you can give away and keep it at the same time. As the old saying goes, “You can’t have your cake and eat it, too.” But by giving your word and then keeping it, everyone wins.

Above all . . . do not swear—not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. All you need to say is a simple “Yes” or “No.” (James 5:12 ).

April 24, 2016

Happiness is like jam. You can’t spread even a little without getting some on yourself. (Inspirational Line)

Do you remember what it was like when you were little and tried to make your own peanut butter and jelly sandwich? Not only did you get the peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth, you probably also had jelly all over your face. You just couldn’t help it. If we could just spread happiness like that, it would be a happier world, wouldn’t it?

A happy heart makes the face cheerful (Proverbs 15:13). Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise (James 5:13).

April 23, 2016

Charity is doing something for someone you don’t know and expecting nothing in return. (Robert Clancy, inspirational speaker and author)

We should be grateful for the many non-profit charities around the world that serve the under-resourced citizens of their communities. But charity needs to begin closer to home—in the lives of individuals who can provide help needed by someone close by. To do so without looking for recognition and reward is to act with godly love.

Love is patient, love is kind. … it does not boast, it is not proud. … it is not self-seeking. Love never fails (1 Corinthians 13:4-8).

April 22, 2016

A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him. (David Brinkley, late TV news anchor)

It’s hard to take criticism, especially when it is inaccurate or ill-intended. Responding in anger to critics only makes things worse. Brinkley suggests a better way. Evaluate the criticism and learn from it. Perhaps you can improve in the area someone else thought to be wrong. In any case, move forward with confidence from what you have learned.

Whoever heeds life-giving correction will be at home among the wise (Proverbs 15:31).