Why does being gracious matter?

29 04 2011

It is possible to call yourself a Christian and not be a follower of Christ.

A follower of Christ should always be digesting what it means to be forgiven.

Being forgiven by grace through faith in Jesus Christ means a “turn around”, a fresh start.

When you’ve been given a fresh start it is easy to be gracious to others.

If you call yourself a Christian you should be known to be a gracious person. There’s no faking it.





William Donald Schaefer’s passion for Baltimore

27 04 2011

William Donald Schaefer’s passion for Baltimore had him saying a few things that we can learn from today. Today Baltimore remembers Mr Schaefer. He was a citizen then the Mayor of Baltimore City and the Governor of Maryland. During his service, he saw citizens fleeing the city after the riots of the late 60’s, a bad economy, and the departure of the Baltimore Colts. And yet he accomplished much to the benefit of our great city!

The Baltimore Sun wrote, “In four terms as mayor and two as governor, he was a champion of big projects that transformed Baltimore: Harborplace, Camden Yards, the National Aquarium, the Convention Center and the light rail among them. Yet he was also intensely involved with the mundane details of city neighborhoods. As mayor, he would patrol the city at night and on weekends, calling city officials to demand immediate action to fill a pothole or clean a garbage-strewn alley.”

He was apparently a fiery and at times controversial leader. Yet he had an undeniable passion for the City of Baltimore. He was known to say a number of things. Here are a few we can learn from:

Who are you going to help today?

Mayor Schaefer was know to open his Mayoral Cabinet meetings by asking this question to each of his key leaders. He carried an expectation that every leader look to help an average person, beyond their job description, with a help that is real.

What is going on now?

Mayor Schaefer was found back in his office after the celebration that opened Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, back at work. When asked what he was doing he said, “That was earlier today. What is going on now?” It seems that he was focused on working for solutions now and not resting on his laurels.

Do it now!

Mayor Schaefer was known to say to government leaders and employees, “Do it now!” As the stories are told he did not have a patience for procrastination.

Baltimore is the best!

Mayor Shaefer had an undeniable enthusiasm for Baltimore City. Even his fiercest political opponents had to admit today that he helped a city in trouble reach new highs. If only each one of us would look at people and our work the same way! Get a vision for the future, believe the best, and work hard every day toward solutions!





Ear Candy Saturday soft and crunchy distraction from the news

9 04 2011

Ear Candy Saturday Morning and how about starting off with a cup of coffee and some music you just haven’t gotten around to listening to yet???

It possible that you are looking for a distraction from your weekly grind…or more likely a distraction from the frustration (news and other media as enjoyable as chewing cardboard) waiting for your return from this week’s activities to see what is going on in the world.

Maybe it is a better idea to see what is being created this year…instead of what is being reported.

My wife and kids have been sick this week and I’ve been playing nurse (not a possible career path for me) and trying to get as much done as possible. My prayer is that we don’t have to relive this week, ever again. God is gracious and in truth we don’t have any big problems. I’m very grateful for my amazing wife and kids!

Here’s a few soft and crunchy items I thought you might enjoy.

Heath McNease – Too Much Love

“I can’t hold back now!” My kids, Charlotte and Gideon, are simply amazing! Spending a bit more time with them this week has provided some fun lighter moments. My love for them just swells up and I can’t hold back. You have to hug those beauties! I definitely understand why people spoil kids! 

This is a light-hearted track from a talented artist. I found it both soft and crunchy.

Kye Kye – Broke

F ormerly known as Paper Rings, Kye Kye is a good example of what soft tones can be produced by siblings.

The Running Back – Break Away

“If you need to break away, if you need a clean escape, look up to the sky and say, “I need you, I need you here.”” Honestly, I prefer a couple of their other tracks, to this one, but the title is genius for being “searchable” online! You could just hear Chris Berman, “WHOOP stumblin’ bumblin’ he could go all the way!”

Reilly – Around the World

A bit more on the crunchy side – there’s some good stuff going on here. It’s the title track from an album with proceeds going to the poor.

Brian Wurzell – Grace Ocean

Love this title! There’s good lyrical content here. This is worth a listen!





No excuse for Big Ben Roethlisberger.

4 04 2011

There’s a rumor going around that the Steelers lost the Super Bowl because Big Ben got a concussion in the first half.

BJ Raji did get a direct (and I would have to say CLEAN) hit on Big Ben. There was 1:31 left in the half and the score was GB 21 Pittsburgh 3. Ben definitely gets rocked. His head hits the turf. He takes off his helmet and the Steelers took a time out so the TV coverage went to commercial. So it’s possible, but I don’t know.

Right way, Big Ben threads a needle with an 18 yard pass to Hines Ward for a first and goal. Then another pass to Ward for the touchdown. Looked sharp to me.

It seems like an excuse. Ben had already thrown two interceptions, prior to the hit. Their game plan seemed to be an attempt to establish the run. You would have expected them to pass more (prior to the supposed concussion) when two of the Packers best, in Woodson and Shields, head to the locker room with injuries. Pittsburgh Nation: that comes down to play calling & coaching.

The Steel Curtain defense just could not stop Green Bay from grinding out the drives they needed to stay in control. Jennings rightly screams, “Thank You God!” along with every Packer Backer. Green Bay let Pittsburgh hang around (just like they did in way too many games this year) and showed a character weakness that you would have to say minimizes the likelihood that they will repeat.

It’s now GB 31 Pittsburgh 25 with less than 2 minutes in the game. The Steelers suffered from two straight passing plays where there was a clear miss-communication between Big Ben & his receivers. Sure looked like the receivers didn’t know where they were supposed to be. Green Bay’s Defense wins the game and Jennings is jumping around shouting, “To God be the Glory!”

What can I say? It’s Monday night and I don’t want to hear bad news about the NFL CBA this week. Come on! Work it out!





Ear Candy Saturday on the Rooftops with a Beautiful Step

2 04 2011

Just for the love of listening to music for the first time. I have found that there are times when the less you know about an artist before you hear their song – the more likely you are to actually hear what the lyric is expressing.

Ok, sorry, too deep for an Ear Candy post with your morning coffee.

I say that to say…try listening to these tracks without pre-judging the artist by name or reputation. You just might be surprised.

Rooftops

A Beautiful Exchange

Go

One Thing Remains

Beautiful Step on the first link you have to wait out the audience clapping over the first 60 seconds to get into the song, kind of annoying, but worth it.

Happy Saturday morning to you – enjoy the tunes here…keep looking for something new and always support artists who write, play, and record their own material!