Michael Hyatt's Best Year Ever course helped me set practical, measurable goals for 2015. I plan to go through his guide again for 2016. Having the goals in place pushed me to do more than I would have without the goals. One of my goals was to write a blog post each week. This is my thirty-fourth post for the year.
I can identify with Joseph as he watched the woman he loved suffer as her time drew near. He had to try to help while feeling helpless himself. Such unusual things had been happening so quickly over the past few months, and now this baby was coming who was not his baby.
Murphy himself well understood the horrors of war. In a 1955 interview, he said, “War is like a giant pack rat. It takes something from you and leaves something behind in its stead. It burned me out in some ways so that now I feel like an old man but still sometimes act like a dumb kid. It made me grow up too fast. You live so much on nervous excitement that when it is over, you fall apart. That’s what war took from me, the excitement of living.” Another time he also noted: “After the war, they took the dogs and rehabilitated them for civilian life. But they turned soldiers into civilians and let ‘em sink or swim.”
Russ Roberts recently released the 500th episode of his podcast EconTalk. This now weekly podcast started in 2006, and I think I started listening in 2007. I'm guessing that I've listened to at least 300, maybe 400 episodes. The voice of Russ Roberts (usually played at 1.5x speed) has been a frequent companion while I wash dishes, mow the grass, and drive across country. His work has educated me and entertained me.
We can use passports and background checks and metal detectors and any other security methods we can imagine. But nothing and no one can guarantee that we will be 100% safe from bad guys. Bad guys are notorious for finding ways to get around legal, technological, and physical barriers. While politicians hem and haw, millions of capable, intelligent, hurting people are waiting for a chance to live in a place that offers peace and opportunity.
I believe that Jesus was really a human like us, but he did have an advantage when it came to getting to know people. Since "He knew all men" and "knew what was in man" (John 2:24-25), he didn't have to spend time asking questions. In order for us to serve another person most effectively, we need to take time to understand where she is, where she is coming from, and where she wants to go.
I am reading Booker T. Washington's Up From Slavery for the first time. It addresses the issue of relations between black and white Americans, and Washington has a valuable perspective. But I want to highlight here some of his thoughts on education.
Before books became widely available, most people had to learn new things by listening to or watching others. Are we entering a post-book age, where instead of reading, we can listen to and watch others do things on YouTube?
I am re-reading a biography of Charles Wesley, and it described the week he spent ministering to convicted felons at Newgate prison in London. The following excerpts are taken from his journal. I am not sure what this narrative might tell us about the death penalty, but it tells us something important about how we look at condemned criminals.