Sunday, May 30, 2010

Twitter Changed My Life

Twitter is revolutionary...if you use it correctly.  Here are 6 ways Twitter has changed my life.

1.  I no longer watch the news or read the paper.  I get local and national updates before it goes on air or is published.  AND I get to choose which article or story I want and can read it anywhere, anytime.

2.  I learn more.  There are some very insightful blogs from some great leaders and very intelligent people.  I learn from @scottwilliams, @thisissethsblog, @donmilleris, @davidbusic, and @revrunwisdom on a daily basis.  Follow them on twitter and check out their blogs!

3.  I watch less TV.  Instead of getting sucked into addicting TV shows like Lost, American Idol, The Office, etc... I read.  It is something different everyday so it doesn't get old.

4.  I always have reading material in the bathroom.  I have any newspaper, magazine, and/or blog of my choice at my fingertips.  Public restroom?  No problem!

5.  It's quick.  Facebook is an amazing tool but it has the potential to be overwhelming.  Twitter is 140 characters or less and it is constantly flowing.  @scottwilliams describes Twitter as a river of fresh info rather than a lake of stagnant history.

6.  Twitter could save you money!  Cut out bills for newspaper, magazines, and cable because twitter has taken the place of all three!  This is nearly $100 saved each month.

These are some ways Twitter has revolutionized my life.  Set up an account today and see how it can change yours.

Learning is a drug...Get ADDICTED!

Friday, May 28, 2010

My Time Is Up

The last day of school is a whirlwind of emotions.  Students and teachers alike are ready for summer break but going to miss seeing friends and coworkers.  I can honestly say I will miss all of my students, I just may not miss having them in class.  :)

As I was giving some famous last words to my seventh grade students it suddenly occurred to me that my time was up.  What I mean by that is I will not have the opportunity to positively impact those students and prepare them for the real world like I did this year.  Sure I will see them in the hallway and maybe coach them in Track or Basketball but for the most part my time is up.

It makes me stop and think.  Did I do my best?  I know they are prepared academically but what about socially? Will 8th grade teachers be able to tell that they had my class?  Are my students more or less respectful than others?  How can I do better next year with my allotted time?  What will they remember about me and my class?

Instead of counting down the days until summer we should be counting down the opportunities to teach and impact our students.  Once our time is up, students move to the next teacher on the assembly line to help shape, mold, and develop them into the final product of successful and respectful men and women.  Teachers, we have a new batch of students that need to be poured into, loved, valued, educated, and challenged.  Recharge those batteries this summer so that you can feel confident when your time is up.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Greatest Gift

My Mom's birthday was coming up and I wanted to get her a special gift.  I don't know about you but it is very difficult for me to find good gifts for my parents.  So I looked and I searched and I hunted and I simply could not find anything that I thought my Mom would want AND need that fit my budget.  I finally settled on something with the help from my wife and we put it in a wonderful gift bag. 

As I visited my parents for the weekend my Mom and I decided to go for a walk in the beautiful weather.  When we left the driveway my Mom began to cry.  If you know my mom this is normal so I just waited for her to speak.  She said "What a wonderful gift to be able to go for a walk with my Son for my birthday."

Wow!  I felt incredibly loved and silly at the same time.  I spent all of this time and effort trying to figure out the perfect gift when the number one thing on her list was to go on a walk with me. 

This was a great reminder for me that the greatest gift you can ever give someone is your time.  Your time cannot be returned, regifted, or sold at a garage sale.  It is always what people want and need and it will always fit into your budget. 

Who do you need to give the gift of time to this week?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Dear Lebron James,

Dear Lebron James,

I know your contract is up soon and you have a decision to make.  Allow me to give you some advice.  Stay in Cleveland.  Why?  Because the greatest players stay with one team.  Think about it Lebron, the majority of the greatest players in history have had all of their success with one franchise.  Jordan, Magic, Bird, Olajuwon, Worthy, Stockton, Malone, Drexler, David Robinson, Elgin Baylor, Abdul-Jabbar, Isaiah Thomas, etc....  Sure some of those players went to another team for a year or two at the end of their career but all of their success was with one team. 

I know we live in a different day and age but there is something special about creating success where you are rather than finding it somewhere else.  This goes beyond basketball and sports in general.  The greatest businessmen don't hop from company to company; they create a dynasty.    

Don't take the easy way out Mr. James.  Take a pay cut if you have to in order to get some help and make it up in endorsements.  It will be worth it in the long run.

What would you do?

Monday, May 17, 2010

5 Steps to Forgiveness

Forgiving someone can be one of the hardest things to do.  Typically if someone hurts us we want them to earn our forgiveness. The problem is forgiveness cannot be earned, only given.

Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. 

Here are 5 steps to let go of grudges and experience true forgiveness.

1.  Pray for them.  Do not pray that they will apologize or that they will come to their senses.  Pray for their well being.  Pray for peace in your life and in theirs.  Pray for mental and emotional healing.  You might even start with, "God, this person really hurt me and I don't want to forgive them.  Please begin to soften my heart." 

2.  Don't Gossip!  It is healthy for you to talk about your hurts.  It is unhealthy to tell everyone you know and bash the character of others.  The more you talk bad about the person that hurt you the more negative your feelings will be towards them, and the harder it will be to forgive.  If you don't have anything nice to say...

*Steps 3 and 4 are only necessary if you plan to restore and continue a relationship with the person you are forgiving.*

3.  Make positive contact.  Until you're ready to fully forgive, begin making small, positive contact.  If you see this person on a regular basis, start by smiling and politely saying hello.  Make quick small talk.  If you don't see them often, send a quick e-mail, text, or hand written card.  Call to quickly ask how they are doing or simply to wish them a happy birthday or nearest holiday.  Whatever you do, make it quick and positive.   

4.  Apologize.  I know what you're thinking.  "He/She is the one who should be apologizing!"  If you want to be free from the bondage of bitterness then you have to make the decision to let go.  When the time is right (you'll know) apologize for something (not everything) that you have done that may have hurt them.  Possibly apologize for the negative feelings that you had towards them.  Again, make it quick and positive.  DO NOT expect anything in return.  Your forgiveness cannot be contingent on their apology.

5.  Be Patient.  Every situation has a different time frame but eventually your heart will be prepared for forgiveness.  It may or may not be appropriate for you to tell the person that you have forgiven them.  You might tell them in person or send a letter or e-mail.  If it is someone you don't wish to or can't reconnect with you may want to write a letter to them expressing your forgiveness and then bury it, burn it, or keep it somewhere.  Forgiving someone is saying "You no longer have control over my feelings but I love you and want the best for you, regardless of the hurt that you caused."

Remember, no one deserves forgiveness.  Not even you.  To forgive someone is to cancel a debt that cannot be paid.  They cannot undo the hurt that was caused.  This is what makes it so difficult and so special.  Forgiveness cannot be earned, only given.  Do you have someone you need to forgive?

...forgive us of our sins, as we also forgive those who have sinned against us...

Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me?  Seven times?  Jesus answered, "Not seven times, but seventy-seven times." Matt. 18:21 

For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matt 6:14-15

I know it was a long post.  Thanks for reading!

Friday, May 14, 2010

5 Ways To Thunder Up!


A blog I wrote about the OKC Thunder was featured on a major website.  This was in 2010 but I thought I would post it again during the playoffs. 

Scott Williams was a Campus Pastor for (nwokc campus).  He is an incredible leader, a social media visionary, and is always challenging people to Dream Big and THINK BIGGER.  In fact his sermon challenged me to start blogging.  He just finished his first book Church Diversity and is speaking around the country on the topic. 

Please check out my post on his blog. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I'm Contagious...

Do you ever notice that when something doesn't go your way first thing in the morning you typically have a bad day?  And then the people you come into contact with also seem to be having a bad day?  Why is that?

The reason is You are contagious.  Your negative thoughts and actions are contagious.  When you react negatively to a situation it is natural for others to become defensive and begin or continue the negative cycle.  It's like dominoes.

Likewise, do you notice that when you start your day off right you typically have a great day?  And then the people you come into contact with also seem to be having a great day as well?  Why is that?

The reason is You are contagious.  Your positive thoughts and actions are contagious.  When you respond positively to a situation it is natural for others to smile and begin or continue the positive cycle.  It's like dominoes.

How do you start your day off right?  You make the choice to respond positively. 

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

Being a mom has to be the toughest and most important job in the world. They physically develop us in their bodies for 9 months. They help develop us mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and psychologically for the first few years. Then they watch as their child begins to grow closer to their father (if there is one) and eventually to their friends.  There is not a job in the world that is as constant or requires such a wide range of emotions and skills.

I'm not trying to brag but I have the best Mom on the planet. Not that she is better than your mom but she raised me better than anyone else could. She is the epitome of joyful. She is strict but kind and loving. She is supportive but not hovering. Although it hurt her, she watched me fall so that I could learn but was always the first help me up. No parents are perfect but my mom is as close as you can be.

Thank you Mom for all of your unconditional love, support, encouragement, sermons, patience, and everlasting joy. I LOVE YOU!!

HAPPY MOTHERS DAY To all the moms out there. I hope that you feel special on a daily basis, especially today!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Thank You

Writing Thank You cards is a lost art.  Thank you e-mails, texts, facebooks, etc are good, but they don't have the same impact as taking the time to sit down and hand write a card.  Write a thank you card this week to someone.  How about your mom for mothers day!

Thank you for reading my blog!  I would send you a hand written card but I don't know who you are.  I've come to find out this is the strange part about writing a blog; its hard to know what to write about when you don't know who's reading.

As you can see the blog title is "Learning Is A Drug" because I am seriously addicted to learning.  My hope is that you learn something from each post and if you like it, share it with others.  

Thank you again for taking the time to read my blog.  Out of curiosity, leave a comment to let me know which blog post is your favorite.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Like Riding a Bike

I went to my college baseball field today for the first time in 5 years.  As I was walking around and taking it all in, all of these memories came back to me.  I began to spit.  I went to my normal place in the dugout.  I played catch in my normal spot.  Although it had been 5 years I did all of these things out of habit, without thinking.  I mean I had done these things thousands of times so it just came natural, like riding a bike. 

This made me wonder, what else comes natural to me?  Do I naturally treat people with respect and make wise decisions?  Do I naturally honor those around me and make a positive impact in this world?  What do I do without even thinking?

What comes natural to you?  What do you do without thinking?  What are your habits?  If you like your answer then I suggest you keep doing it.  If you don't like your answer then start making new habits today.