Thursday, December 30, 2010

Making life beautiful

"One day at a time - this is enough. Do not look back and grieve over the past, for it is gone: and do not be troubled about the future, for it has not yet come. Live in the present, and make it so beautiful that it will be worth remembering."

Ida Scott Taylor
1820-1915, Author

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The greatest weakness

"Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time."

Thomas Edison
1847-1931, Inventor and Entrepreneur

Work and self

"The one important thing I have learned over the years is the difference between taking one's work seriously and taking one's self seriously. The first is imperative and the second is disastrous."

Margot Fonteyn
1919-1991, Classical Ballet Dancer

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Town taxes Christians for listening to sermons

Finding purpose

"Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself and know that everything in this life has a purpose."

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Get started!

"Do not wait; the time will never be 'just right.' Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along."

Napoleon Hill

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Getting off the fence

"It doesn't matter which side of the fence you get off on sometimes. What matters most is getting off. You cannot make progress without making decisions."

Jim Rohn

Thursday, December 16, 2010

When goals can't be reached

"When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps."


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Your standards

"Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you."

Henry Ward Beecher

Monday, December 13, 2010

Sticking to your vision

"Before you begin a thing remind yourself that difficulties and delays quite impossible to foresee are ahead. You can only see one thing clearly, and that is your goal. Form a mental vision of that and cling to it through thick and thin."

Kathleen Norris
1880-1966, Novelist

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Choosing your friends

"Be careful the environment you choose for it will shape you; be careful the friends you choose for you will become like them."

W. Clement Stone

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Not taking yourself too seriously

"Laugh at yourself and at life. Not in the spirit of derision or whining self-pity, but as a remedy, a miracle drug, that will ease your pain, cure your depression, and help you to put in perspective that seemingly terrible defeat and worry with laughter at your predicaments, thus freeing your mind to think clearly toward the solution that is certain to come. Never take yourself too seriously."

Og Mandino

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Asking for what you want

"Asking is the beginning of receiving. Make sure you don't go to the ocean with a teaspoon. At least take a bucket so the kids won't laugh at you."

Jim Rohn
1930-2009, Author and Speaker

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Stick with it, and find joy

"Be of good cheer. Do not think of today's failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow. You have set yourself a difficult task, but you will succeed if you persevere; and you will find a joy in overcoming obstacles."

Helen Keller

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Where champions come from

"Champions aren't made in the gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision."

Muhammad Ali

Monday, November 29, 2010

Moving in the direction of your dreams

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them."

Walt Disney

Thursday, November 25, 2010

On thankfulness

"Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings."

William Arthur Ward
1921-1994, Writer

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Achieving excellence

"If you want to achieve excellence, you can get there today. As of this second, quit doing less than excellent work."

Thomas Watson
1874-1956, Founder of IBM

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Making troubles disappear

"I've always believed that a lot of the troubles in the world would disappear if we were talking to each other instead of about each other."

Ronald Reagan

Monday, November 22, 2010

Making life better

"The most wonderful gift one human being can give to another, is in some way, to make that person's life a little bit better to live."

John Assaraf

Thursday, November 18, 2010

What you can do with enthusiasm

"Every memorable act in the history of the world is a triumph of enthusiasm. Nothing great was ever achieved without it because it gives any challenge or any occupation, no matter how frightening or difficult, a new meaning. Without enthusiasm you are doomed to a life of mediocrity but with it you can accomplish miracles."

Og Mandino

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


"Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate."

Dr. Albert Schweitzer

Monday, November 15, 2010

what you want

"Here's the problem. Most people are thinking about what they don't want, and they're wondering why it shows up over and over again."

John Assaraf

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Close to success

"Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up."

Thomas Edison

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The company you keep

"Deliberately seek the company of people who influence you to think and act on building the life you desire."

Napoleon Hill

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Moments when you have truly lived

"You will find as you look back upon your life that the moments when you have truly lived are the moments when you have done things in the spirit of love."

Henry Drummond

Monday, November 08, 2010

Where the future is going

"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."

Eleanor Roosevelt

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Taking responsibility for our thoughts

"If we are not responsible for the thoughts that pass our doors, we are at least responsible for those we admit and entertain."

Charles Newcomb

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

History is not destiny

"To grow, you must be willing to let your present and future be totally unlike your past. Your history is not your destiny."

Alan Cohen

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

It starts with us

"If you want a kinder world, then behave with kindness; if you want a peaceful world, make peace within."

Dan Millman

Monday, November 01, 2010

One thing at a time

"I never could have done what I have done without the habits of punctuality, order, and diligence, without the determination to concentrate myself on one subject at a time."

Charles Dickens

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Becoming the solution

"Believe it can be done. When you believe something can be done, really believe, your mind will find the ways to do it. Believing a solution paves the way to solution."

Dr. David Schwartz

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Leading for the future

"Close your eyes and form a realistic picture of what a post PC world might actually look like. Those who can envision a plausible future that's brighter than today will earn the opportunity to lead."

Ray Ozzie
Former Chief Software Architect at Microsoft

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Yes and no

"All the mistakes I ever made were when I wanted to say 'no' and said 'yes.'"

Moss Hart

Monday, October 25, 2010

Finding satisfaction

"We are built to conquer environment, solve problems, achieve goals, and we find no real satisfaction or happiness in life without obstacles to conquer and goals to achieve."

Maxwell Maltz

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The secret of riches

"Never forget: the secret of creating riches for oneself is to create them for others."

Sir John Templeton

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Before we attempt to ....

"Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome."

Samuel Johnson

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Why we need goals

"In the absence of clearly defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia until ultimately we become enslaved by it."

Robert Heinlein

Monday, October 18, 2010

The first step to overcoming misfortune

"Acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune."

William James

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Do it today!

"One today is worth two tomorrows; never leave that till tomorrow which you can do today."

Benjamin Franklin

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Turning problems into opportunities

"Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who recognized a problem and turned it into an opportunity."

Joseph Sugarman

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Worrying about what others think

"You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do."

Eleanor Roosevelt

Monday, October 11, 2010

When things begin to happen

"It's the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen."

Claude M. Bristol

Thursday, October 07, 2010

What fear is

"We can't fear the past. Fear is a future thing. And since the future's all in our heads, fear must be a head thing."

Tom Payne

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

How to fail

"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."

Bill Cosby

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

What moves the world

"Determination and perseverance move the world; thinking that others will do it for you is a sure way to fail."

Marva Collins

Monday, October 04, 2010

Confronting stress

"When you find yourself stressed, ask yourself one question: Will this matter five years from now? If yes, then do something about the situation. If no, then let it go."

Catherine Pulsifer

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Applying intelligence

"There's plenty of intelligence in the world, but the courage to do things differently is in short supply."

Marilyn vos Savant

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


"People who soar, are those who refuse to sit back and wish things would change."

Charles R. Swindoll

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Weak faith and strong faith

"Just as a small fire is extinguished by the storm whereas a large fire is enhanced by it - likewise a weak faith is weakened by predicament and catastrophes whereas a strong faith is strengthened by them."

Viktor E. Frankl

Monday, September 27, 2010

Getting to your potential

"Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential."

Sir Winston Churchill

Friday, September 24, 2010

Making today happen

"Today I will make a difference. I will begin by controlling my thoughts. A person is the product of his thoughts. I want to be happy and hopeful. Therefore, I will have thoughts that are happy and hopeful. I refuse to be victimized by my circumstances. I will not let petty inconveniences such as stoplights, long lines, and traffic jams be my masters. I will avoid negativism and gossip. Optimism will be my companion, and victory will be my hallmark. Today I will make a difference.

I will be grateful for the twenty-four hours that are before me. Time is a precious commodity. I refuse to allow what little time I have to be contaminated by self-pity, anxiety, or boredom. I will face this day with the joy of a child and the courage of a giant. I will drink each minute as though it is my last. When tomorrow comes, today will be gone forever. While it is here, I will use it for loving and giving. Today I will make a difference.

I will not let past failures haunt me. Even though my life is scarred with mistakes, I refuse to rummage through my trash heap of failures. I will admit them. I will correct them. I will press on. Victoriously. No failure is fatal. It's OK to stumble...I will get up. It's OK to fail...I will rise again. Today I will make a difference.

I will spend time with those I love. My spouse, my children, my family. A man can own the world but be poor for the lack of love. A man can own nothing and yet be wealthy in relationships. Today I will spend at least five minutes with the significant people in my world. Five quality minutes of talking or hugging or thanking or listening. Five undiluted minutes with my mate, children, and friends.

Today I will make a difference."

Max Lucado

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What you deserve

"The minute you settle for less than you deserve, you get even less than you settled for."

Maureen Dowd

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Ultimate freedom

"Our ultimate freedom is the right and power to decide how anybody or anything outside ourselves will affect us."

Stephen R. Covey

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Feeling grateful

"Feeling grateful or appreciative of someone or something in your life actually attracts more of the things that you appreciate and value into your life."

Christiane Northrup

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Formula for success

"So it is, life is actually made up of our choices. We are the sum total of them, and if we hold to an attitude of love and thanksgiving for all the good things within our grasp we may have what all ambitious people long for - success."

Delma Neeley

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

What to do to succeed

"If I had to select one quality, one personal characteristic that I regard as being most highly correlated with success, whatever the field, I would pick the trait of persistence."

Richard DeVos

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Rare Roman helmet goes to auction

A picture of Roman life in Britain.

Into the fiery furnace

I've been pondering the connections between these passages.

Matthew 13.41-42: "The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth."

Matthew 13.49-50: "So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth."

with Daniel 3 -- the entire chapter, but especially vss. 26 and 27: Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire. And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king's counsellers, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them."

Both parties go into a fire: one group suffers, the other doesn't, to the point that there's not even a smell of fire on them. Is it because in one there's nothing to burn, and the other there is?

Being thankful

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity. It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow."

Melodie Beattie

Thursday, September 09, 2010

What you want in life

"Devotion is commitment at a deep cellular level. When you are devoted, the universe will align itself to give you what you desire."

Rich German

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Great teaching

"I have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that there are as few as there are any other great artists. It might even be the greatest of the arts since the medium is the human mind and spirit."

John Steinbeck

Overcoming dark clouds

"A good laugh overcomes more difficulties and dissipates more dark clouds than any other one thing."

Laura Ingalls Wilder

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Jonah and Jesus

While reading this book:

I realized something that hadn't hit me before: the parallel between Mark 4.35-41 and Jonah 1, which I suspect were in Mark's mind when recounting this episode.

Both Jonah and Jesus are asleep in the boat. In both cases, the mariners (in the Markan story, the disciples, of course, are the mariners) waken a sleeper. But while in Jonah, the man must be thrown overboard to still the waves, in Mark Jesus does not need to be overthrown -- he stills the waves and wind by His command.

Monday, September 06, 2010

what you touch

"Be careful what you spend your day touching because it will shape your mind, your body, and your heart."

Sam Keen

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Inception: the movie

I saw Inception tonight. I was rather less impressed than most folks.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Mercy unto thousands

Exodus 20.5-6 reads: "Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments."

Often this is read like this: iniquity to the third and fourth generation, and mercy unto thousands of individuals of them that love God.

Deuteronomy 7.9 seems to offer commentary on the Exodus passage: "Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations."

Exodus 20.5-6 seems to be a parallel text: "third and fourth generation" with "thousands [of generations]."

In other words, evil has a short shelf life -- 3 or 4 generations (traditionally seen as a period of 40 years for a generation) while God's mercy is enormously long and full: thousand and thousands of years of mercy.

I'm not speculating about the relationship this might have with the parousia, but suggesting that because of our own limitations, we often delimit God's mercy. Exodus 20 -- in the midst of the giving of the law -- tells us otherwise. Psalm 30.5 is likewise good to remember here: "For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."

Thursday, September 02, 2010

The difference between Esther and Jonah

I have to confess: I don't like the book of Esther.

Having said that, I like the individual Esther. She's spunky, tough, and brave.

But the book that bears her name is -- to me -- grating, often mean spirited, and hard to take.

The opposite is true in the book of Jonah.

I love the book of Jonah. It's a great story of God's mercy, of His kindness, and of the failed men (and women) who sometimes speak what God has given them to speak.

Not to mention other aspects of the book: the sailors who sought to save Jonah from the deep, God's concern for not only the people of Ninevah, but the animals as well -- there in the last verse. And of course, the picture of Mediterranean sailing in the 4th century BC. We find out from this book that passengers sailed and paid fares (and maybe had fees for extra luggage, though this is not mentioned) that there was sleeping areas on the ship, and get a vivid description of life on a ship in the midst of a storm.

But I detest the man Jonah. He is mean, nasty, vituperative, and spiteful.

Or rather "was" all of these things. Perhaps the ultimate message of the book of Jonah is of God's patience and kindness. Jonah, too, could grow in God's mercy. May God grant that we may all so grow.

Moving in the direction of your dreams

"I have learned this at least by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours."

Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Acts 4: "holy child Jesus"

The phrase "holy child Jesus" occurs only twice in the English Bible. Both are in the prayer of the Jerusalem church in Acts 4 (27 & 30). I'm intrigued by the significance of this phrase.

The AV is the only translation I can find that renders the phrase this way. Most newer translations render it "holy servant Jesus" or something of that nature. "Servant" is certainly a possible rendering, and could mean an emissary from a king, but I think that the usual first meaning, child, is better to indicate what seems to be the incarnational quality of the prayer.

On making mistakes

"Even a mistake may turn out to be the one thing necessary to a worthwhile achievement."

Henry Ford

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Energy from your dreams

"Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out if they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you."

William James

Monday, August 30, 2010

Turning your life around

"Every achiever that I have ever met says, 'My life turned around when I began to believe in me.'"

Dr. Robert H. Schuller

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The rite of Confession and Absolution in I Samuel 1

An infertile woman and an adversary at home? Not a happy combination. But we're given the story of such a problem relationship in I Samuel 1, in the story of Hannah and Eli's interaction in the Temple. And what's even more interesting is the picture this story gives to us of an event in the Temple that goes on now in the church: that of Confession.

I Samuel 1.9-17 (AV): "So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD. And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore. And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head. And it came to pass, as she continued praying before the LORD, that Eli marked her mouth. Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken. And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken? put away thy wine from thee. And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the LORD. Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial: for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto. Then Eli answered and said, Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of him."

In the larger context, the story's fairly simple. Hannah's unable to conceive, and she goes up to Jerusalem with her husband to worship and pray. Contextually, we can guess that she's praying for a child, and more specifically (from I Sam. 1.8) for a son. The Temple was likely a fairly busy place, and we can guess that there were others there praying as well. What's interesting is that Eli the priest was also there, and we're told he was sitting on a seat by a post there in the Temple.

What was Eli doing there? Given that he was sitting, we can probably assume that he wasn't simply passing through the Temple precincts. He might have been praying himself, but that seems odd, given that he notices Hannah's behavior, and if he'd been praying, one would guess he'd be more wrapped up in his prayers than in her behavior. (Given that Eli notices Hannah's mouth moving -- and leads him to question her being drunk -- shows that she wasn't praying out loud). But from his later statement to Hannah ("Go in peace") I would suggest that Eli was there to hear Confession.

In certain circles (especially Roman, and some Lutheran), Confession is confined to a very specific set of behaviors, of confessing sin, and being absolved from that sin. However, I would argue that in the scriptures, Confession is a much larger set of actions, encompassing not only confessing sin, but godly counsel, spiritual direction, teaching, correction, and guidance. None of these preclude confession of sin or absolution from that sin. But there are numerous occurrences in the scriptures that make sense when we realize a larger, more encompassing meaning of private Confession. Most of these behaviors (i.e., godly counsel, spiritual direction, teaching, correction, and guidance) occur in other contexts, but I'd argue that what sets Confession apart is that is directed at one individual, and is set in a context where that individual Christian can especially be given to realize that these are directed specifically at themselves. Given this definition, I believe that Eli was hearing Confession in the Temple, and Hannah was the recipient of that Sacrament.

Hannah is probably not there to specifically confess her sins, per se. She's in distress, upset over her inability to conceive, and upset by her adversary (the adversary possibly being Elkanah's other wife Peninnah, a demonic adversary, depression, or simple grief over her condition). In such a situation, Hannah would be in need of pastoral care, loving reminders of God's care for her, encouragement to continue praying. I argue that Eli gave her precisely that care, in the context of what we would now call Confession -- and that that is precisely what he was there doing in the Temple that day.

The lesson from this? Some things change in the course of the biblical revelation. The incarnation is the most obvious example: some things were very different after that event. But much remains the same. God's people -- then and now -- needed pastoral care directed to themselves as individuals. Eli -- and likely other priestly colleagues -- were there to provide that care, as are priests in our time. We can take comfort for the godly continuity found through the scriptures. Things are different, but much is the same, and we are given hope through the scriptures (cf. Romans 15.4) for our walk in God.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Doing good in the moment

"Act well at the moment, and you have performed a good action for all eternity."

Johann Kaspar Lavater

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Believing in yourself

"People become really quite remarkable when they start thinking that they can do things. When they believe in themselves they have the first secret of success."

Norman Vincent Peale

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Getting ahead

"Getting ahead in a difficult profession requires avid faith in yourself. You must be able to sustain yourself against staggering blows. There is no code of conduct to help beginners. That is why some people with mediocre talent, but with great inner drive, go much further than people with vastly superior talent."

Sophia Loren

Thursday, August 19, 2010

What successful people do

"Achievement seems to be connected with action. Successful men and women keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don't quit."

Conrad Hilton

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

What successful people do

"Successful people form the habit of doing what failures don't like to do. They like the results they get by doing what they don't necessarily enjoy."

Earl Nightingale

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

What you want in life

"When you are clear, what you want will show up in your life, and only to the extent you are clear."

Janet Attwood

Monday, August 16, 2010

Getting what you want out of life

"The indispensable first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: decide what you want."

Ben Stein

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Not being discouraged

"History has demonstrated that the most notable winners usually encountered heartbreaking obstacles before they triumphed. They won because they refused to become discouraged by their defeats."

Bertie Charles Forbes
1880-1954, Financial Journalist, Author and Founder of Forbes Magazine

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

How to fail

"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."

Bill Cosby
Comedian, Actor and Author

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Accomplishing great things

"All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim; have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible."

Orison Swett Marden
1850-1924, Writer

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

The kind of man (or woman) we should be

"Today, I would like to become the man my dog thinks I am."

Jack Thomson

Monday, August 02, 2010

Don't give up

"I realized early on that success was tied to not giving up. Most people in this business gave up and went on to other things. If you simply didn't give up, you would outlast the people who came in on the bus with you."

Harrison Ford

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

What you desire

"Focus more on your desire than on your doubt, and the dream will take care of itself. You may be surprised at how easily this happens. Your doubts are not as powerful as your desires, unless you make them so."

Marcia Wieder
Author and Speaker

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What I can do

"I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. I will not refuse to do the something I can do."

Helen Keller
1880-1968, Author and Lecturer

Conquering fear

"You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn't exist anywhere except in the mind."

Dale Carnegie
1888-1955, Speaker and Author

What often makes successful people successful

"One difference between successful people and all the rest is that successful people take action."

Bob Proctor
Speaker and Author

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Laughing, even in hard times

"I live by this credo: Have a little laugh at life and look around you for happiness instead of sadness. Laughter has always brought me out of unhappy situations. Even in your darkest moment, you usually can find something to laugh about if you try hard enough."

Red Skelton
1913-1997, Comedian

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What everyone wants

"Everyone wants to be appreciated, so if you appreciate someone, don't keep it a secret."

Mary Kay Ash

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Just do it!

"Each indecision brings its own delays and days are lost lamenting over lost days. What you can do or think you can do, begin it. For boldness has magic, power, and genius in it."

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
1749-1832, Poet, Novelist, and Scientist

Monday, July 12, 2010

How to take care of your doubts

"Doubt, of whatever kind, can be ended by action alone."

Thomas Carlyle
1795-1881, Philosopher and Author

Thursday, July 08, 2010

The things money can't buy

"It is good to have money and the things that money can buy, but it's good too, to check up once in a while and make sure you haven't lost the things money can't buy."

George Lorimer
1867-1937, Editor of Saturday Evening Post

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Imagining the future

"When you paint success pictures in your mind, you initiate an inner process whereby your attitudes, hopes, aspirations, and enthusiasm are elevated in response to an image of a more promising future. Every person who aspires must first sell themselves hope, the promise of a better life."

U.S. Andersen

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Laughing in the midst of headaches

"A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs; jolted by every pebble in the road."

Henry Ward Beecher

Monday, July 05, 2010

Growing your imagination

"Imagination grows by exercise, and contrary to common belief, is more powerful in the mature than in the young."

Paul McCartney

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Desires that stir the heart

"So let your deepest desires direct your aim. Set your sights far above the 'reasonable' target. The power of purpose is profound only if you have a desire that stirs the heart."

Price Pritchett

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Changing your life

"You must constantly ask yourself these questions: Who am I around? What are they doing to me? What have they got me reading? What have they got me saying? Where do they have me going? What do they have me thinking? And most important, what do they have me becoming? Then ask yourself the big question: Is that okay? Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change."

Jim Rohn
1930-2009, Author and Speaker

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What high achievers do

"High achievers spot rich opportunities swiftly, make big decisions quickly, and move into action immediately. Follow these principles and you can make your dreams come true."

Robert H. Schuller

Monday, June 28, 2010

When we worry about the future

"If you keep on saying things are going to be bad, you have a good chance of being a prophet."

Isaac Bashevis Singer
1904-1991, Journalist and Writer

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Power to achieve what you want

"Don't concern yourself too much with how you are going to achieve your goal - leave that completely to a power greater than yourself. All you have to do is know where you're going. The answers will come to you of their own accord, and at the right time."

Earl Nightingale

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

When something seems difficult

"Don't be afraid if things seem difficult in the beginning. That's only the initial impression. The important thing is not to retreat; you have to master yourself."

Olga Korbut

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The only security the world offers

"When you know that you're capable of dealing with whatever comes, you have the only security the world has to offer."

Harry Browne

Monday, June 14, 2010

Taking chances

"The important thing is not being afraid to take a chance. Remember, the greatest failure is to not try. Once you find something you love to do, be the best at doing it."

Debbi Fields
Founder of Mrs. Fields Cookies

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Using what you have right now

"You know, it's not more knowledge, it's not more education, it's not more facts that we need. It's a better use of what we already have that we need to have. You have each and every one of you, within your potential power right now to do a wonderful job in your chosen field - if you would only embrace it and use it."

Napoleon Hill

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

A successful life

"Make each day useful and cheerful and prove that you know the worth of time by employing it well. Then youth will be happy, old age without regret and life a beautiful success."

Louisa May Alcott

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

What seems impossible

"All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim; have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible."

Orison Swett Marden

Monday, June 07, 2010

Just do it

"You cannot change anything in your life with intention alone, which can become a watered-down, occasional hope that you'll get to tomorrow. Intention without action is useless."

Caroline Myss

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Where fear lives

"You can conquer almost any fear if you will make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn't exist anywhere except in the mind."

Dale Carnegie

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

More on changing the world

"Maybe you can't change the whole world, but if you have love in your heart you can make small differences every day, which really does change the world, one life at a time."

Kristina Koncz

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Our attitude to life

"I believe in taking a positive attitude toward the world. My hope still is to leave the world a little bit better than when I got here."

Jim Henson

Thursday, May 27, 2010

What other people want

"You can't base your life on other people's expectations."

Stevie Wonder

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Going new places

"I love strange choices. I'm always interested in people who depart from what is expected of them and go into new territory."

Cate Blanchett

Monday, May 24, 2010

Making things better

"The real winners in life are the people who look at every situation with an expectation that they can make it work or make it better."

Barbara Pletcher

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Leaving the future open

"To believe in something not yet proved and to underwrite it with our lives: it is the only way we can leave the future open."

Lillian Smith
1897-1966, Writer

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

What success consists of

"When I thought I couldn't go on, I forced myself to keep going. My success is based on persistence, not luck."

Estee Lauder

Becoming what we believe

"Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I shall have the belief that I can do it. I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it, even if I may not have it at the beginning."

Mahatma Gandhi

What life is made of

"Life is made up, not of great sacrifices or duties, but of little things, in which smiles and kindness and small obligations, given habitually, are what win and preserve the heart and secure comfort."

Humphry Davy
1778-1829, Chemist

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Where maturity begins

"Maturity begins when we're content to feel we're right about something, without feeling the necessity to prove someone else is wrong."

Sydney J. Harris
1917-1986, Syndicated Columnist

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Small people -- and great people

"Keep away from small people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great."

Mark Twain

Thursday, May 06, 2010

2 types of people

"The world is divided into people who do things, and people who get credit. Try, if you can, to belong to the first class, there is far less competition."

Dwight Morrow

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Something so big

"Set a goal to achieve something that is so big, so exhilarating that it excites you and scares you at the same time. It must be a goal that is so appealing, so much in line with your spiritual core that you can't get it out of your mind. If you do not get chills when you set a goal, you're not setting big enough goals."

Bob Proctor

Monday, May 03, 2010

Changing what you are doing

"If things are not going well with you, begin your effort at correcting the situation by carefully examining the service you are rendering, and especially the spirit in which you are rendering it."

Roger Babson

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Looking to the horizon

"Never look down to test the ground before taking your next step; only he who keeps his eye fixed on the far horizon will find the right road."

Dag Hammarskjold

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

What to aim for

"Set your sights high, the higher the better. Expect the most wonderful things to happen, not in the future but right now. Realize that nothing is too good. Allow absolutely nothing to hamper you or hold you up in any way."

Eileen Caddy

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The gift of life

"When you give someone a book, you don't give him just paper, ink, and glue. You give him the possibility of a whole new life."

Christopher Morley
1890-1957, Novelist, Journalist and Poet

Monday, April 26, 2010

Between dreams and reality

"Don't be afraid of the space between your dreams and reality. If you can dream it, you can make it so."

Belva Davis

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Write it down!

"Write down the thoughts of the moment. Those that come unsought for are commonly the most valuable."

Francis Bacon
1561-1626, Philosopher

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Before we speak

"When I get ready to talk to people, I spend two thirds of the time thinking what they want to hear and one third thinking about what I want to say."

Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Lighting the fuse

"People are like sticks of dynamite. The power is on the inside, but nothing happens until the fuse gets lit."

Mac Anderson

Monday, April 19, 2010

Breaking out

"A dream is your creative vision for your life in the future. You must break out of your current comfort zone and become comfortable with the unfamiliar and the unknown."

Denis Waitley
Author and Speaker

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Coming back from defeat

"The mark of a great player is in his ability to come back. The great champions have all come back from defeat."

Sam Snead
1912-2002, Golfer

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

What you have, and what you give

"Prosperity consciousness is the awareness that all of us have something of value to offer, and we all deserve to get paid for what we provide to others."

Peggy McColl

Monday, April 12, 2010

Making a difference

"It's the little things you do that can make a big difference. What are you attempting to accomplish? What little thing can you do today that will make you more effective? You are probably only one step away from greatness."

Bob Proctor

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Roadblocks on the road to success

"You never will be the person you can be if pressure, tension and discipline are taken out of your life."

James G. Bilkey

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Getting even better results

"If you're open to altering your plans a bit, you might achieve even better results than you'd anticipated."

Peggy McColl

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Making a difference by leading

"Leadership is no longer about your position. It's now more about your passion for excellence and making a difference. You can lead without a title."

Robin Sharma

Thursday, April 01, 2010

What forgiveness does

"Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future."

Paul Boese

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Doing the right thing

"Real integrity is doing the right thing, knowing that nobody's going to know whether you did it or not."

Oprah Winfrey

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Not many words

"Abba Macarius taught his disciples not to use many words when they prayed; rather they should frequently stretch out their arms saying, 'Lord, as you know best and in the manner you will, have pity on me'; or when in distress, 'Help me.'"

Joseph Jungmann, Christian Prayer Through the Centuries, p. 31

Our decisions and our lives

"More than anything else, I believe it's our decisions, not the conditions of our lives, that determine our destiny."

Anthony Robbins

Monday, March 29, 2010

What you think about

"Nurture your mind with great thoughts. To believe in the heroic makes heroes."

Benjamin Disraeli

Friday, March 26, 2010

20 ways Obamacare will take away your freedom

Thursday, March 25, 2010

How to get results

"If you love something and stick with it, you will get phenomenal results."

Bob Proctor

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The freedom of your mind

"You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind."

Mahatma Gandhi

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


"Gratitude is a duty which ought to be paid, but which none have a right to expect."

Jean Jacques Rousseau

Monday, March 22, 2010

Development and goals

"Your real purpose in life is to develop yourself. To successfully do this you must always be working toward a goal."

Bob Proctor

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Plans and action

"Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire, and begin at once, whether you're ready or not, to put it into action."

Napoleon Hill

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Hard work and mastery

"If people knew how hard I worked to gain my mastery, it wouldn't seem so wonderful."

1475-1564, Painter, Sculptor and Architect

Reaching for the stars

"Your goal should be out of reach, but not out of sight."

Anita DeFrantz
Olympic Rower

Monday, March 15, 2010

A true master

"Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. For this reason mastery demands all of a person."

Albert Einstein

Thursday, March 11, 2010

How to save a life


"Trust your hunches. They're usually based on facts filed away just below the conscious level."

Dr. Joyce Brothers

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Changing mistakes into success

"It is important to acknowledge a mistake instantly, correct it, and learn from it. That literally turns a failure into a success. Success is on the far side of failure."

T.J. Watson
1874-1956, Founder if IBM

Monday, March 08, 2010

One chance to live

"Time is limited, so I better wake up every morning fresh and know that I have just one chance to live this particular day right, and to string my days together into a life of action, and purpose."

Lance Armstrong

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Looking fear in the face

"You gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face. You must do that which we think we cannot."

Eleanor Roosevelt

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

What we expect -- and what we get

"The world is full of abundance and opportunity, but far too many people come to the fountain of life with a sieve instead of a tank car, a teaspoon instead of a steam shovel. They expect little and as a result they get little."

Ben Sweetland

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

The most important half

"One half of life is luck; the other half is discipline - and that's the important half, for without discipline you wouldn't know what to do with luck."

Carl Zuckmeyer
1896-1977, Writer and Playwright

Monday, March 01, 2010

The best defense against bad things

"There is no defense against adverse fortune which is so effectual as an habitual sense of humor."

Thomas W. Higginson
1823-1911, Minister, Abolitionist and Author

Thursday, February 25, 2010

One thing at a time

"I never could have done what I have done without the habits of punctuality, order, and diligence, without the determination to concentrate myself on one subject at a time."

Charles Dickens

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Weak desires -- and strong desires

"The starting point of all achievement is desire. Keep this constantly in mind. Weak desires bring weak results, just as a small fire makes a small amount of heat."

Napoleon Hill

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Your inner dialogue

"Find something positive to think about and don't let the conversation in your head end with a negative comment. Always end on a positive comment."

Dr. Tomi Bryan and Dr. Jerry White

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Your window on the world

"Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once and a while, or the light won't come in."

Alan Alda

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

When to go

"There comes a moment when you have to stop revving up the car and shove it into gear."

David Mahoney

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Believing in yourself

"To be a champ, you have to believe in yourself when nobody else will."

Sugar Ray Robinson
1920-1989, Boxer

Thursday, February 11, 2010

What you have

"If you look at what you have in life, you'll always have more. If you look at what you don't have in life, you'll never have enough."

Oprah Winfrey

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The first lesson to learn

"Perhaps the most valuable result of all education is the ability to make yourself do the thing you have to do, when it ought to be done, whether you like it or not; it is the first lesson that ought to be learned; and however early a man's training begins, it is probably the last lesson that he learns thoroughly."

Thomas H. Huxley
1825-1895, Biologist

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Making a difference

"I have never been especially impressed by the heroics of people convinced they are about to change the world. I am more awed by those who struggle to make one small difference."

Ellen Goodman

Monday, February 08, 2010

The thoughts we keep

"Beware of the thoughts you keep, because everything in reality manifests from the mind."

Justin Palmer

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Goals and success

"Those with goals tend to succeed because they are focused and know where they are going, while those without goals do not."

Ted Karam

Monday, February 01, 2010

How we think and how we act

"How we think shows through in how we act. Attitudes are mirrors of the mind. They reflect thinking."

David J. Schwartz
Trainer and Author

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Our attitude to life

"Words can never adequately convey the incredible impact of our attitudes toward life. The longer I live the more convinced I become that life is 10 percent what happens to us and 90 percent how we respond to it."

Charles Swindoll

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Day by day

"It's not what you do once in a while; it's what you do day in and day out that makes the difference."

Jenny Craig
Diet Specialist

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

What you are capable of becoming

"If I accept you as you are, I will make you worse; however, if I treat you as though you are what you are capable of becoming, I help you become that."

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
1749-1832, Author and Philosopher

Monday, January 25, 2010

Taking your foot off the brakes

"Even though you may want to move forward in your life, you may have one foot on the brakes. In order to be free, we must learn how to let go. Release the hurt. Release the fear. Refuse to entertain your old pain. The energy it takes to hang onto the past is holding you back from a new life. What is it you would let go of today?"

Mary Manin Morrissey

Thursday, January 21, 2010


"What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity? Our attitude toward it. Every opportunity has a difficulty, and every difficulty has an opportunity."

J. Sidlow Baxter

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

What success is

"Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be."

George Sheehan

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What we focus on

"When you focus on what's wrong, you get more of what's wrong. Conversely, when you focus on what's right, you get more of what's right."

Gina Mollicone-Long

Monday, January 18, 2010

Doing the job

"Don't waste your life in doubts and fears: spend yourself on the work before you, well assured that the right performance of this hour's duties will be the best preparation for the hours or ages that follow it."

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

When you're going to live

"You don't get to choose how you're going to die. Or when. You can only decide how you're going to live. Now."

Joan Baez

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Writing your goals

"An unwritten want is a wish, a dream, a never-happen. The day you put your goal in writing is the day it becomes a commitment that will change your life. Are you ready?"

Tom Hopkins

Monday, January 11, 2010

The secret to life

"The big secret in life is that there is no secret. Whatever your goal, you can get there if you are willing to work. It is called massive action. Action is the gas in the tank. Without it, the car will not run."

Marcy Blochowiak

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Planning -- and action

"Life is too short to waste. Dreams are fulfilled only through action, not through endless planning to take action."

David J. Schwartz

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Dissolving resistance

"Whenever you're facing any form of resistance, gratitude has the power to quickly dissolve it. This is true whether the hindrance comes from inside of you or outside of you."

Peggy McColl

Failure -- and achievment

"Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly."

Robert F. Kennedy

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

"The secret of getting ahead is getting started."

Agatha Christie

Monday, January 04, 2010

Small jobs -- and big jobs

"Don't be afraid to give your best to what seemingly are small jobs. Every time you conquer one it makes you that much stronger. If you do the little jobs well, the big ones tend to take care of themselves."

Dale Carnegie
"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt."

William Shakespeare