Tag Archives: Commitment

The Power of One

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In 2004, a 15-year-old student turned an extra credit project into a national movement. California high schooler Shauna Fleming was unsettled when she heard a news report that American military personnel serving overseas were feeling unappreciated on the home front.  She began to think about the community service credit she could earn at school.  “Dad,” she said to her father, who was… Read more »

No Explanation

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It’s hard to come up with an explanation for the extraordinary life of William Borden. Borden graduated from a private high school in Pennsylvania in 1903.  He was just 16 years old and was already one of the richest men in the United States.  William was the primary heir to his family’s fortune, which had come from silver mining out West… Read more »

Do You Love Me More than These?

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For the four weeks leading up to and going beyond Easter, we’re looking at the life of Peter.  Because he’s so often at the center of both the brightest and darkest moments in the Gospels, he has always been a source of hope and inspiration for those endeavoring to follow Jesus. During the Middle Ages, Benedictine monks stood at a… Read more »

A New Name

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For the four weeks leading up to and going beyond Easter, we’re looking at the life of Peter.  Because he’s so often at the center of both the brightest and darkest moments in the Gospels, he has always been a source of hope and inspiration for those endeavoring to follow Jesus. Some people get special nicknames. In the world of… Read more »

Getting Off the Fence

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For the four weeks leading up to and going beyond Easter, we’re looking at the life of Peter.  Because he’s so often at the center of both the brightest and darkest moments in the Gospels, he has always been a source of hope and inspiration for those endeavoring to follow Jesus. People who live in a consumer culture tend to… Read more »

Courage

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When Chuck Norris grows up, he wants to be a Gurkha. Gurkhas are natives of the multi-ethnic highlands of Nepal.  Over several centuries they have earned global notoriety as fearless warriors. The Chief of Staff of India’s armed forces once suggested, “If a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or is a Gurkha.”  Working… Read more »

If Only

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On the day Thomas Carlyle’s wife was buried it poured down rain. In April 1866, the Scottish writer and a group of mourners tramped through the mud to the cemetery where Jane was laid to rest.  They had been married for 40 years.  Then he returned to his home, feeling desperately alone.  The Carlyles’ relationship had been shaped by his… Read more »

Throw Your Cap Over the Wall

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Most gifted speakers make use of a handful of signature stories – anecdotes they can pull out at a moment’s notice to drive home special points. John F. Kennedy used one of his favorite stories at Brooks Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas.  He was present to dedicate the new School of Aerospace Medicine. It was the heyday of… Read more »

Happy Meals

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Several years ago I read about a megachurch that presented “Feed the 5,000 Day.”  The first 5,000 people who showed up on a particular Sunday morning received a free fish sandwich – bread and fish, get it? – passed out by Ronald McDonald himself.  Large American congregations are nothing if not inventive in their efforts to keep crowds of spiritual… Read more »

The Showdown

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Sometimes the greatest public victories are followed by the most demoralizing personal collapses.  It happened to Elijah – arguably a unanimous first ballot inductee if they ever open a Hebrew Prophet Hall of Fame. In I Kings 18, this scraggly-looking “mountain man” stands all by himself against the vilest monarchs in ancient Israel.  King Ahab and his wife Jezebel have… Read more »