Go Ballistic! Read the Bible

“Until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.” Matthew 11:12

If you want to make a radical, positive change in your life: read the Bible.

Maybe you have tried to read the Bible before and failed. Maybe you have tried and succeeded. Maybe you have never tried. Maybe it’s time!

YouVersion makes it easy. YouVersion is free and is available on the Web and on mobile platforms. Create an account and pick a Bible reading plan.

Try M’Cheyne if you really want to go deep. YouVersion has several plans available but my favorite is M’Cheyne. He was a Scottish minister in the 19th century and his plan takes you through the OT once and Pslams and the NT twice.

Double down with D.A. Carson. D.A. Carson has written a two-volume set, For the Love of God, which gives daily, short commentary on the passages from the M’Cheyne plan.

#1 Productivity Tip (and you’ve never heard it)

I’m guessing that you have read a number of books on personal productivity. In fact, you’ve probably taught a class on it and maybe even written a book on it. However, I doubt you have ever consider my #1 Productivity Tip.

I believe that the greatest hit to personal productivity is getting ticked off or ticking someone else off. So, my tip is to avoid (as much as possible) getting ticked off, avoid ticking other poeple off, and managing the fallout when tempers flare.

So what do you do to minimize the hit to your productivity when someone ticks you off? Take as many of the following steps as is necessary in the order that they are listed and you will save yourself a lot of grief and significantly increase your productivity.

Step 1. Forgive the person. Period.

Step 2. Decide what you need to do next. In the vast majority of cases the person that ticked you off either doesn’t realized that they did it or doesn’t care. So in most cases it is not worth doing anything other than forgiving them and putting it behind you. Howver, sometimes things are serious enough to warrant further action.

Step 3. Talk to them about the issue face-to-face. If you can’t meet with them face-to-face, give them a call. DO NOT put your thoughts in an email (or God forbid, a text). Admit whatever fault you can and tell them how what they said or did made you feel. In my career I have seen hundreds of situations that could have been quickly cleared up if the two people who had a conflict just talked to each other. I know this takes courage but otherwise you will spend minutes, hours, or possibly days thinking about it.

Step 4. If step 3 doesn’t work and you truly belive the issue warrants it, then bring in a supervisor and have a meeting with the three of you.

Agree or disagree? Sound off in comments.

The Power Of Desire X 2 (Spiritual)

The power of desire is one of the most powerful forces on the planet. This power multiplies geometrically when couples, teams, or business associates share the same desire.

Recently, I have been profoundly impacted by Stormie Omartian’s The Power of a Praying® Husband. Guys, if you want a happy wife, this one is a must read.

In Chapter 16, Omartian explores the subject of “Her Desires”.

Rebooting Your Life (Spiritual)

Sometimes an event or series of events causes you to re-evaluate everything about your life. Recently I had one of those wake-up calls.

So what can you do (and what I am doing)?

Shut down what you can shut down. When life throws you a curve ball, you need as few battles to fight as possible. Shut down absolutely everything you can. If you are in a position to take a sabbatical or temporary breather, do it. What you need is less stress (good or bad) and more perspective.

Evan Almighty – Mighty Good (Movie Review) (Fun and Fitness Friday)

Evan Almighty was every bit as good as I had hoped. I can’t think of anything bad to say about it.

Don’t be put off by the title. I’m pretty sensitive and I didn’t see anything sacrilegious about it.

I thoroughly enjoyed it. The plot, the acting, the sets, and the special effects all combined to tell a great story. I loved the fact that this guy changes from being full of himself to being humble. It was also great to see a family stick together when the entire world seems to be against them. I grinned and laughed out loud over and over again.

It made me think. Sometimes we seem to think that God is in a bad mood. Most of the time, He’s not. In this movie God has a great sense of humor and tremendous patience. Also, Evan is asked to do something that seems totally stupid to him but in fact is crucial not only to him but to many others. Sounds like art reflecting reality to me.

I’m glad they spent the money. I watched the extras where they talk about the effort that went into producing the movie. Most of the time when I watch a movie I think: what a waste of millions of dollars. Not this one, this story was worth the money.

I hope we see more movies like this one coming out of Hollywood.

We Are Marshall (Movie Review)

This is a great movie that reenacts a true story. Unlike The Ultimate Gift , I can’t recommend it without reservation, but almost. There is a smattering of offensive language but other than that it is entertaining and family friendly.

I love sports. This movie shows how sports can help people band together and overcome great hurt. Some of the football scenes had me holding my breath and then cheering for joy. Great stuff.

I love true stories with a happy ending. This story really happened and for me somehow that makes it better. Also, for the most part, the movie leaves you with a good feeling. Call me wimpy, but that’s the kind of movie I like.

I love stories that capture my attention and hold it. This movie was one that did that. I didn’t find myself even thinking about how long the movie was running (now that’s a minor miracle).

So, I think this is one worth catching. To order from Amazon (and support this site) click We Are Marshall (Widescreen Edition).

My Last Lecture

If you knew you were dying what would you say in your last lecture?

For some, this is not a hypothetical question. What got me to thinking about this was a video I first saw thanks to Brad Isaac at Achieve-It. It’s about a young man who has very little time to live and is making his last public lecture.

So, if I had one lecture to give, I would say:

  1. God is good.
  2. God has a wonderful, individualized plan for every person on the planet (this includes you).
  3. Today’s troubles are the building blocks for tomorrow’s triumphs.
  4. Value relationships above all else.
  5. Find out where you can make the most difference and keep devoting more and more of your time to that.
  6. You get to decide how to respond to every situation. Choose to respond well.
  7. God is good.

So, here’s your chance, what would you say? I plan to feature the best ones in an upcoming post.

The Ultimate Gift – A Movie Review

I like movies but most of the time when I recommend one to a friend I end up saying “It was a great movie but it would have been better if xyz had not been in it. Not so with The Ultimate Gift. There was nothing in it that I would not have wanted my 10 year old (or me for that matter) to see.

Entertaining Plot. The plot is about a spoiled rich kid who learns that the most important things in life don’t have to do with money. It has enough subtle twists and turns to hold your interest but the real strength of the plot is its wonderful, underlying message: the best gifts are those of character and not material things.

Great casting and acting. It’s easy to get lost in the story because the scenes are so believable. Also, the cast is a great mix of familiar and unfamiliar faces.

It leaves you feeling good. Sometimes I’m in the mood for a suspenseful movie that leaves you feeling like you’ve been on a long roller coaster ride. But most of the time, I’m not. This is the kind of movie I’m always in the mood for. In the end, everything turns out well and you get the feeling that life is good. I like it.

For a really good movie, check out The Ultimate Gift.