Colorado Fires: What would you take with you?

The Colorado fires continue to roll with infernal heat and raging blazes as temperatures in the area could reach 105 degrees again. Prayers from around the nation are asking for a sudden cloud burst from heaven to put out the hellish embers. This sudden blazon resurgence has claimed homes and hundreds of acres but as of this writing, thankfully, has not claimed a life.

We have watched in horror as our friends who live in the Colorado Springs area have feared for their possessions and many others are calming their children with filtered masks on their faces. But the question came to me early this morning, what would you take with you if you had to evacuate your home quickly? Of course we know immediately we would take our wife, our children, grab our wallet or purse, make sure we had our phone and scurry out the door, but what next? If time allowed for a few other items to be thrown into the suitcase, what would you take besides a change or two of clothes?

Personally, I would grab my Bible and my Dad’s Bible. My Bible has notes and inscriptions along my spiritual journey that I wouldn’t want to lose. After my Father’s passing about a year ago, I would want to preserve the memory by taking his Bible. A prayer journal I have written in since college would be added to my collection.

Pictures of my children growing up and of our wedding, whether recorded on a disk or in a box of pictures we have managed to keep together over the years, grabbing those memories would be very dear to us if we were to lose everything else.

Necessities. Living light has its benefits, not much more I would take but I believe I would grab a case of water, throw it in the cooler and ice them down, knowing I would probably run into many thirsty firemen and volunteers.

Before we left, I would check on my neighbors. Our neighborhood has many families with small children. I would want to make sure they had a way out.

Well, that’s my short list now how about you?

Comment below: Do you have “necessities” you would grab? What would you most likely take with you?

Copyrighted by Jim Laudell. Material contained in this post cannot be reproduced or copied without permission from the author.

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IPad Creations

Ever looked for an app of one of your favorite online sites only to be disappointed because it is not created yet? It is a hassle to go to the browser, type in the location, then wait for it to download. Seems to me there should be a quicker or easier way – now there is on the IPad 3.

This happened to me. I was frequently going to the same site, I bookmarked it but would have rather went to my home screen to click on the app and bring up the site. Now I found what I was looking for and it was right under my nose.

Go to your Safari browser on your IPad3 and go to the site that you frequently go to by typing in the address or clicking your bookmark. Once you are there; go to the symbol of a little box with the arrow proceeding out of the top, you will notice under Add a Bookmark, the words, Add to Home Screen. Click and it will add an app to your home screen – now, when you click on the app it will quickly go to your favorite site.

Comment below: Are there other creative ways to use this Add to Home Screen button?

Copyrighted by Jim Laudell. Material contained in this post cannot be reproduced or copied without permission from the author.

Editing – whew!

For me writing is the fun part but editing , well, can be a little trying. I have heard it said, “when writing, go with the flow, correct your mistakes later.” I couldn’t agree more. The train of thought moves quickly and to stop at every crossing would make the trip to be unbearably long. When the creative juices are flowing – write. Come back and make the corrections after you have reached a stopping place.

With that being said, editing can be stressful however, having another set of eyes on the project can be extremely helpful. This is not the time to go cheap. When writing a book to go to print be sure and find an editor who has expertise and experience. Check with the local college or Chamber of Commerce for referrals.

When you flow well, speak well, and write well – it is your greatest asset. Don’t lose the benefit of your creativity by poor grammar or spelling; ruining your project or idea.

When blogging – a mistake here and there may happen, if we wait till the blog was edited we would be writing two weeks out. Maybe not a bad idea but certainly not practical, and it could be expensive. So write your blog, read it over a couple of times, do the spell check twice and preview the post before publishing.

Remember your post is influencing people – some may not click LIKE even when they LIKE it, some may not post a comment even when they have a comment but many will read and think and some will learn and others will act.

Comment below: Did you find any mistakes in the above written blog? Why is it easier to find other’s mistakes and look over our own?

Copyrighted by Jim Laudell. Material contained in this post cannot be reproduced or copied without permission from the author.

Confessions of a Father

The day after Father’s Day and back to work but not without some important changes. Several fathers admit there are some things they would like to change. They want to change their family future.

Most father’s admit they aren’t for sure what is expected of them and what they must do to accomplish being a “good” father. They support their family with a good work ethic, provide for the needs of the family and go to church but father’s are asking, “is something missing?”

Let’s look at what children really need from their father if we are to find adequate answers. It is true families need to be provided for but new shoes will never take the place of a father pitching the ball to his son madly swinging a bat in all the wrong directions.

Of all the requests that come from families for dad to do this or that – the most requested item is – “we just want Dad to be with us.”

“Dad time” is the most important item we can give to a child. Let’s look at some prime “dad time” ideas:

Being one to one with your child The highlight of a child’s week is when he is picked to go with dad. We must be fair to balance it out when there are more children but this “gift” of time with a child being one on one with Dad is one of the most important aspects of a child’s life.

Praying with your child Praying together makes our heart soft and grants a connection with a child, only God can give. When my children we young there were times I asked my son or daughter to forgive me for being angry, only to hear those innocence words come back, “I forgive you Dad.” Precious time is invested in a child when you are on your knees.

Love their mother Your children will find no greater security than when a Dad shows affection to their momma. A dad who expresses honor and affection to their children’s mother is a wise man.

Comment below: Do you have a “DAD TIME” moment you would like to share?

Copyrighted by Jim Laudell. Material contained in this post cannot be reproduced or copied without permission from the author.

Encouraging Words

Spending some quality time with some long time friends last week was the highlight of the year. Sitting at Starbucks, conversing of times past, our children and grandchildren, plus, new dreams and aspirations. Our time together at the restaurants, in their home and at the coffee shop was time well spent and left an overwhelming feeling of thankfulness for such friends. Leaving encouraged by their friendship, hospitality and genuine concern over the years caused me to look at Proverbs 25:11 again with a new-found appreciation.

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.

Life is too short for grudges, too hard to add complaining and argumentation, too difficult to drag others down with negative words. Barnabas was an encourager to Apostle Paul, in fact, the name Barnabas, means encourager. After shipwreck, stonings and jail sentences, encouragement from a friend can go a long way.

Let’s encourage someone today with a sincere compliment, a well written card or a long, over due, phone call.

Comment below: Do you have a compliment you would like to leave for someone?

Copyrighted by Jim Laudell. Material contained in this post cannot be reproduced or copied without permission from the author.

Bringing your dream out

Not everyone will agree with your dream when you bring it out in the open. It is not the obstinate rebellion of your work or your person but the crazed world of negativity of those who find it hard to believe. Optimism is the gift of the creative but lacks so sadly among the realists. Dreams are best understood by dreamers. Those few who know the risk of failure but keep believing that today, yes, today, is the day for the miracle, the open door or the answer. Negative thinking causes stress, poor concentration, lack of opportunity, and even lead to physical problems, such as, headaches, muscle aches and rapid heart beat.

But positive thinking is not enough! The power to “believe” is to know the spiritual influence of the Holy Spirit to lead, guide, instruct and encourage. Not a one time experience but a life full of communication and connection. The Holy Spirit magnifies Jesus and the greater He is in your life – the more able we are to “believe.”

When you bring your dream out in the open there must be a goal to reach, a plan to write, a life to live and a prayer to pray.

Goal to Reach There must be a visual goal that I can see, touch and feel each day. Take a picture of you with a mountain back scene if you wish to travel, a book in your hand if you wish to publish or a poster with your goal emblazoned upon it.

A Plan to Write Every dream must hit the road with shoe leather. Dreams take work. Write down in detail the steps necessary each day to accomplish your dream. Write down the timeline, the steps necessary, and the people you need to meet to bring it to pass.

A Life to Live Begin to live your dream everyday Putting yourself in your dream is vitally important if you desire to see the fruition of your dream.

A Prayer to Pray If your dream is not over your head then you simply took a nap. We are in desperate need to the power and grace of God to accomplish the dream, as we rely on Him, He brings it to pass, sometimes behind the scenes but ever fervently working to bring His purpose into our lives.

Comment Below: Do you have a dream you can livetoday? Will you share it?

Copyright By Jim Laudell. Permission must be obtained from the author to reporduce or copy.

When will you do something great?

Procrastination is the thief of time. It steals my moments of reflection, my days of accomplishment and my years of significance. We pass through life once and only once. I can live today only one time. “Redeeming the time….” What I plan to do I must do now.

“Can’t afford it,” “No time,” and “Tomorrow” are today’s liars and tomorrow’s regrets. You may excuse yourself by saying it is too late but it is never too late. Begin now, plan today!

Significance in your life is the reward of those who dream and live it today!

1) Helen Keller At the age of 19 months Helen became deaf & blind. But that didn’t stop her. She was the first deaf-blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree
2) Mozart was already competent on keyboard & violin, he composed from the age of 5
3) Shirley Temple was 6 when she became a movie star on “Bright Eyes”
4) Anne Frank was 12 when she wrote the diary of Anne Frank
5) Magnus Carlsen became a chess Grandmaster at the age of 13 years
6) Nadia Comăneci At age 14, gymnast of Romania scored seven perfect 10.0 and won three gold medals at the Olympics
7) Tenzin Gyatso was formally recognized as the 14th Dalai Lama November 1950, at the age of 15
8) Pele soccer superstar was 17 years old when he won the world cup in 1958 with Brazil
9) Elvis was a Superstar by age 19
10) John Lennon was 20 years & Paul Mcartney 18 when the Beatles had their first concert in1961
11) Jesse Owens was 22 when he won 4 gold medals in Berlin 1936
12) Beethoven was a Piano virtuoso by age 23
13) Issac Newton at 24 wrote Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica.
14) Roger Bannister was 25 When he broke the 4 minute mile record
15) Albert Einstein was 26 when he wrote the theory of relativity
16) Lance E Armstrong was 27 when he won the tour de France
17) Michelangelo created the two of the greatest sculptures “David” and “Pieta” by age 28
18) Alexander the Great by age 29, had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world
19) J.K.Rowling was 30 years old when she finished the first manuscript for Harry Potter
20) Amelia Earhart was 31 years old when she became the first woman 2 fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean
21) Oprah was 32 when she started her talk show, which has become the highest-rated program of its kind
22) Edmund Hillary was 33 when he became the first man to reach Mount Everest (highest Mountain in the world
23) Martin Luther King Jr. was 34 When he did the speech “I have a dream”
24) Marie Curie was 35 years old when she got nominated 4 Nobel Prize in Physics 1903
25) The Wright brothers, Orville (was 32 ) & Wilbur (was 36) when they invented & built the world’s first successful airplane & making the first controlled, powered & sustained heavier-than-air human flight
26) Vincent Van Gogh was 37 when he died & virtually unknown yet his paintings today are worth millions
27) Neil Armstrong was 38 when he became the first man to set foot on the moon
28) Mark Twain was 40 when he wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and 49 years old for Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
29) Christopher Columbus was 41 when he discovered the Americas
30) Rosa Parks was 42 when she refused 2 obey bus driver’s order 2 give up her seat 2 make room for a white passenger.
31) John F. Kennedy was 43years when he became President of the United States
32) Henry Ford Was 45 when the Ford T came out
33) Suzanne Collins was 46 when she wrote ” The Hunger Games”
34) Charles Darwin was 50 years old when his book On the Origin of Species came out
35) Leonardo Da Vinci was 51 years old when he painted the Mona Lisa
36) Abraham Lincoln was 52 when he became president
37) Ray Kroc Was 53 when he bought the McDonalds Franchise and took it to unprecedented levels
38) Dr. Seuss was 54 when he wrote “the cat in the hat”
40) Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III was 57 years old when he successfully ditched US Airways Flight 1549, in the Hudson River in, 2009. All of the 155 passengers aboard the aircraft survived.
41) Colonel Harland Sanders was 61 when he started the KFC Franchise
42) J R R Tolkien was 62 when the lord of the ring books came out
43) Ronald Reagan was 69 when he became President of the United States

Comment Below: Do you have “something great” you can begin today? Will you share it?

Copyright By Jim Laudell. Permission must be obtained from the author to reporduce or copy.

Six Ways to Settle an Argument

You are not responsible for their actions but you are responsible for your reactions. A tense disagreement can ruin a relationship. Stress drives anger to the boiling point. We can learn to disagree agreeable and take the steering wheel in our hands. Let’s look at Six Ways to Settle an Argument:

Lower your voice. A loud voice doesn’t exert authority but only exemplifies your loss of control. “A soft answer turns away wrath,” the psalmist David advises. You don’t win by getting louder – you only escalate the problem.

Understand different interpretations. Even Matthew, Mark, Luke and John told the story of Christ through a different lens. Your personality, upbringing, environment, childhood and education will make a difference on how you view ideas around you. Allow for different interpretations.  Your opinion is just that – an opinion. Don’t put people in a box, your box.

Be ready to forgive. I’m sorry but… isn’t really an apology. Saying your sorry has become such cheap words when said many times without change. It is better to say, “Would you forgive me? I will do my best to do better and to change.”

Find common ground. Instead of magnifying the areas you don’t agree on find the areas you do agree on. Find a common place to begin with.

Don’t go to bed mad. You subconscious dwells on your most emotional downturn of the day, causing you to build a wall, one brick at a time. Unresolved conflict is still a conflict. Take care of the matter before it gets bigger.

Pray about it. Pray for you and pray for them. Pray for them to change after you pray for you to change. Remember Jesus forgave you. If the conflict still burns like fire in your bosom then most likely you have not forgiven yet.

Comment Below: Do you have a story of forgiveness?

Copyright By Jim Laudell. Permission must be obtained from the author to reporduce or copy.

The Fear of Falling

Do you remember your first experience of a major fear of falling? I do. After High School I was hired by the State of Missouri Highway Department as an inspector and it gave me more money than I could have dreamed. It also, gave me many experiences that were near being nightmares.

A bridge was being built along a large flowing river in Northern Missouri and I was asked to go out and meet the crew, I think it was a setup. When I arrived they asked about inspecting the middle portion of the bridge. “You’re not afraid – are you?”

The bridge beams were in place but just a little wider than the width of my foot, maybe a mere six inches. No flooring, screen or Rebar was in place yet for the concrete to be poured on top, just six-inch wide beams. It was Spring time and the river was flowing aggressively, capturing tree limbs and debris in its rapid flow. They advised, “The trick is – don’t look down.” They made it look easy. Several of them walking back and forth across the beams laughing and talking along the way.

I took my first step, I was bound to not look down, then a second step. I talked myself into it and I quickly made my way across the beam to the middle of the bridge, Then it happened; I looked down. Fear struck my chest and heavy breathing became the norm. I wanted to cry, “Dear God, please help me!” So, I did – on the inside.

I knew I must continue to make my way across – I continued slowly…I mean, SLOWLY. Sweating on a cool spring morning is not difficult when fear is rising up in your chest. My mind was racing, “This is the craziest thing you have ever done.” No, not craziest – stupidest. I finally made it to the other side among the cheers of the other workers.

I quickly learned a lesson – there are others more experienced who have become accustomed to walking in dangerous places but if you wait until you have the confidence and faith to do it – then, you will never muster up the courage to do it. There are times when you learn as you go along. You were trained for it. Maybe, you didn’t even do it like the more experienced but you can do it. Sure, a fear of falling is natural but the risk of trying is what brings the greatest experiences.

I haven’t been on the beam of a bridge since and I don’t plan to.

You can learn more about the Fear of Falling when my newest book Highpoints comes out later this year.

 

COMMENT: How do you overcome fear? 

Copyright By Jim Laudell. Permission must be obtained from the author to reporduce or copy.

 

Facing Opposition

Every moment of opposition is an opportunity for advancement. Maybe it is a job related problem. Turmoil in your home. Or, a neighbor. Whatever the opposition there is always an exit strategy. Problems are never finale.

You must know there is a way to win because behind every opponent is a weak link.

BE SMARTER THAN THE OPPOSITION – Facing the Giants Movie

Pray your way through the problem. There is not a better way than to depend on someone bigger than you. When David faced Goliath he turned to God for help. God is bigger than your Goliaths.

Come in the Spirit of forgiveness. You can meet your opponent with the same fire in your bosom as your opponent or you can come with a willingness to mend the broken relationship with a forgiving heart. Not every opponent wants to end the opposition peacefully but fighting fire with fire – someone will get burnt.

Fasting can break the bond. There are many testimonies of friends who have seen dramatic freedom through fasting and prayer – even for one day. You may not have the power to break the shackles but God can.

Keep a sweet spirit. You are not responsible for their actions but you are responsible for your reactions. Choose to keep a smile on your face and the bitterness out of your heart.

Comment Below: What do you do when facing opposition?

Copyright By Jim Laudell. Permission must be obtained from the author to reporduce or copy.