Thursday, November 17, 2011

9-9-9: Food

9 Foods I Love to Eat:
  1. Fried Chicken
  2. Olive-Loaf Bologna
  3. Shrimp
  4. Prime Rib
  5. Fried Okra
  6. Frozen Twinkies
  7. Bacon
  8. Oreo Creme
  9. Cheese

9 Foods I Don't Eat Much:
  1. Eggs
  2. Rice
  3. Gravy
  4. Baked Beans
  5. Liver
  6. Fettuccine Alfredo
  7. Beets
  8. Cottage Cheese
  9. Prunes

9 Foodish Sounding Things I Wouldn't Eat:
  1. Toe Cheese
  2. Leech Sushi
  3. Goiter Gravy
  4. Skunk Stew
  5. Earwig Crunch
  6. Cream-of-Cyst Soup
  7. Deep-Fried Larva
  8. Autumn Leaf Salad
  9. Chocolate Covered Scabs

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

9-9-9: Places

9 Places I've Lived


  1. Sherman Manor

  2. Clare, MI

  3. Covington, KY

  4. Brock West

  5. Cedarville, OH

  6. Muskegon,MI

  7. Marlboro Road

  8. Huntington, WV

  9. Perry, MI



9 Places I've Visited


  1. Disney World

  2. Cape Cod

  3. Outer Banks, NC

  4. Mammoth Cave

  5. Ford Field

  6. Savannah, GA

  7. Field of the Wood

  8. Niagara Falls

  9. Hilton Head, SC



9 Places I'd Like to Go


  1. The Superbowl

  2. St. Andrews

  3. Grand Canyon

  4. Anfield

  5. Anywhere Warm

  6. Philadelphia

  7. Ireland

  8. Augusta National

  9. Seattle

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

9-9-9: SPORTS

9 Teams I Prefer to All Others:
1. Michigan State Spartans

2. Detroit Tigers

3. Detroit Lions

4. Liverpool FC Reds

5. Detroit Red Wings

6. Sailor Soccer

7. Cedarville Yellowjackets

8. Detroit Pistons

9. Cincinnati Reds

9 Teams I Love to Hate:
1. Notre Dame Fighting Irish

2. Chicago Bears

3. Minnesota Twins

4. Colorado Avalanche

5. Manchester United Red Devils

6. Green Bay Packers

7. Chicago White Sox

8. Dallas Cowboys

9. New York Yankees

9 Athletes I Admire:
1. Steve Yzerman

2. Barry Sanders

3. Lou Whitaker

4. Steve Smith (MSU basketball)

5. John Stockton/Karl Malone

6. Greg Maddox

7. Isaiah Thomas

8. Brandon Inge

9. Andy Pettitte

Monday, November 14, 2011

I Don't Have All the Answers, But I Can See One of the Problems

I saw a commercial this morning in which Ed Schultz said something to the effect of, "I never imagined I'd see America like this. Wall Street is going through the roof and Main Street is footing the bill."

This is not an uncommon statement these days, and it seems to get a lot of traction. But is it true?

I decided to do a little research myself, and here's what I found.

The top 10% of all wage earners in America currently pay about 70% of the taxes in America. I would imagine the "Wall Street Barons" probably fit into the top 10%, yet it would appear they are footing 70% of the bill for America.

The top 1% of all wage earners in America currently pay about 35% of the taxes in America. To really understand what that means, think of it this way: The wealthiest 1% of Americans are not only paying their own way, each of them are also footing the bill for 35 other Americans who are paying NOTHING.

It would hardly seem that "Main Street" is footing the bill for Wall Street. In fact, the numbers would suggest the opposite.

One more stat. The top 50% of wage earners in America currently pay about 98% of the taxes in America. In other words, half of Americans are not footing any part of the bill...

Here's the problem. When guys like Schultz use deceptive and inflammatory rhetoric, we are unable to address the real problems. By using words he either knows to be false (the alternative is that he's a lazy fact checker or an idiot), he is diverting people's attention from the real issues and is creating unnecessary divides between classes.

We will always have people who make more money than others. We will always have people who are far wealthier than others. These are not problems. In our current system, the wealthy and the high earners are already paying far more than their fair share.

Yet we still have issues.

Unemployment is really high. Poverty continues to grow. Children are being neglected and abused. Families are falling apart. People are losing their houses. Soldiers are being killed. etc...

But none of these problems are going to be solved by pointing our fingers at "classes" of people and screaming that they need to pay their share...

I don't have the answers this morning. But I do not that dishonest journalism doesn't get us any closer.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Today's Pictures. Plus, Stuff I Like



Following are a couple links to stuff I like. Feel free to leave comments at the end...

If you need to dispose of a dead body, the new iPhone can help you find the perfect place. If you were working for the mob, where would you stash your "jobs"?

This mayor of a Utah town spent two years writing articles under a false name to try to make people feel better about his town. Is this okay? When is "spin" appropriate and when is it just lying? Did you know Ben Franklin did something similar?

How far would you go to find a lost wedding ring? Would you go to the city dump? I wonder how many couples have funny stories about lost rings? I once broke my wedding ring in half on a youth missions trip...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Three Stages of Pastoral Ministry

i don't remember where i first saw this, but i scribbled it down on a piece of paper when i did. i stumbled upon that piece of paper today. it made me chuckle (things are funny either because they are true, or because they are not; i'll leave it to you to decide which this one is).

There were three phases to Jesus' ministry which closely mirror the three stages most pastors go through at a church:

1. "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord"

2. "By whose authority do you do these things?"

3. "Crucify him!"


Community Service vs. Community Transformation


I love a good Venn diagram. Venn diagrams on napkins are even better. This is a good Venn diagram on a napkin. It's from my friend Peter Horn. You can read what he wrote about it by visiting his blog at: PeterHornOnline.com.

Friday, November 4, 2011

5 More Clues to Being a Super-Star Parent

We all (those of us who are parents) want to be better parents. Part of good parenting is being able to effectively communicate with our children, particulary in moment of correction. Learning to appropriately respond to correction may, for our children, mean the difference between a wise life and a foolish life. How we communicate correction to them will significantly impact their ability to handle correction.

I found these suggestions in this blogpost at DesiringGod.org. It is originally intended for fathers, but the wisdom of these words are good for all parents. Try to consider these good words next time you find yourself needing to effectively communicate with your children:
Don't waste words. Don't add a lot of apologies or unnecessary detail that make you look timid.
Don't threaten.
Be clear about expectations. When you tell someone, especially a child, how to behave or what to do, make sure you both are very clear about what you expect.
Be clear about consequences, particularly if your expectations involve an area with which that child has struggled in the past.
Take clear, decisive action. . . .
Of course, just like your kids, you will fail to do these things sometimes... When you do, admit it and move on!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

5 Habits That Keep You From Being Content

Contentment is one of the most important virtues we can cultivate in our lives. Temptation, sin and addiction all spring out of a lack of contentment. When we are not willing to be satisfied by the resources God has provided, we will soon find ourselves chasing after the things He knows we do not need.

A few days ago, I came across a blog which listed five things that are destroying your success. Success is one of those things that everyone defines differently, but I noticed that the five items listed are also five habits that can lead to a discontented life. So I've repurposed the list, and below are five habits that will keep you from being content:
  • Constantly criticizing people
  • Blaming other people for your failures
  • Dreaming about other successful people
  • Not taking the extra step to get closer to your goal
  • Letting other people make decisions for you