Why to Stop and Talk and Say Thanks

90 Seconds Will Give Someone the Most Meaningful Part of Their Day

Most of us don’t have time to stop and talk. We just can’t afford to. After all, we’re paid to produce, we have tasks to perform, and slowing down is counterproductive. But there’s an exception.

Why to Stop and Talk and Say Thanks

(Photo courtesy of Unsplash.com)

Not long ago at work I was in the middle of a very busy day, walking through a department I seldom set foot in. I saw a coworker working alone at his computer—totally in the zone. I kept walking and then it hit me, I wonder when the last time somebody thanked him for the good work he does?

A dozen good reasons to just keep walking raced through my mind, and I literally walked out of the room.

But then I heard another voice.

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10 Accountability Questions to Grow Your Christian Life

In the workplace, in our churches, and in the government, we expect accountability. And yet in our personal lives, accountability often strikes us as a negative thing.

10 Accountability Questions to Grow Your Christian Life

(Photo By Joshua Earle. Courtesy of Unsplash.com)

That’s natural, I guess. Even in the Christian life, we expect others to do what’s right, but we often give ourselves a hall pass because our motives are good. Yet in holding this double standard, we can miss a huge benefit of growing in the Christian life.

In a previous post, I shared 3 benefits to having an accountability group. Committing to a group who will ask accountability questions really is nothing more than asking others to encourage you in the essential areas where you want to succeed in the Christian life. More than anything, accountability questions help you to be who you really want to be.

Here are the 10 accountability questions my group asks each week as well as a link for you to download the list.

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3 Benefits to Having an Accountability Group

For the past 10 years, I have met weekly with 8 other Christian men in our neighborhood for Bible Study, prayer, and accountability.

3 Benefits to Participating in an Accountability Group

(Photo: My group)

I recently commented on Michael Hyatt’s blog about the accountability questions our groups asks each week, and he encouraged me to blog about it. Honestly, I had never thought about that, but it makes total sense.

Too often, accountability takes on a negative slant as we picture ourselves surrounded by pointing fingers and a spotlight of condemnation.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

I want to share with you 3 benefits to having an accountability group that can help you in our Christian life.

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What to Do When Feeling Depressed (and What Not to Do)

It started when we were kids. We still deal with it in today. We fail to receive love, and we drag bruised emotions behind us for years, still aching for affirmation.

Before we know it, our attitude becomes: “Who will make me feel good today?” Oh, we won’t say that, but we seek it. The result? We get to feeling depressed.

What to Do When Feeling Depressed

(Photo by Photodune)

It’s not only relationships that challenge our joy. I remember reading about a woman who suffered from a disease of chronic fatigue. She decided to perform on herself the ancient procedure of trepanning—the cutting away a section of the scalp and drilling into the skull. After the operation she made a statement.

I was prone to occasional bouts of depression and felt something radical needed to be done.

When you’re feeling depressed—for whatever reason—and you need to do something, here’s what you can do.

And what you should never do.

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The City of David’s Strength and King David’s Weakness

In King David’s day, the city of Jerusalem stood as a renovation and expansion of Jebus, a site the Hebrews never occupied in the territory of Benjamin.

The City of David’s Strength and King David’s Weakness

(Photo: The City of David at right, opposite the modern village of Silwan. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Those who come to Jerusalem today for the first time are often surprised to learn that the original Jerusalem, “The City of David,” sat on a mere ten acres just south of the Temple Mount. Hardly impressive, it looks like some third-world neighborhood.

Steep slopes surround the City of David and gave it in a strategic advantage during any military threat. So much so, the inhabitants of Jebus felt confident “David cannot enter here” (2 Samuel 5:6). But he did, and David made the site his new capital.

The steep slopes became King David’s military strength.

But the slopes also played into his moral weakness. Here’s how.

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Why You Can’t Afford to Stay as You Are

A couple of months ago I noticed the “maintenance” light come on in my car. That meant the oil and filter needed changing. I thought, Yeah, I’ll do that soon. Right.

Why You Can’t Afford to Stay as You Are

(Photo by Photodune)

About a month went by and I thought: You know, I need to deal with that. I forgot again. It wasn’t until a couple weeks later I finally got it changed. I put it off because I’m a busy guy—and hey, oil and filters can always wait another day.

But then another warning light went off. This one was serious.

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Downside Up: Transform Rejection into Your Golden Opportunity

Downside Up: Transform Rejection into Your Golden Opportunity [Book Review] (Thomas Nelson, 2013)

When I first picked up this book, I assumed it would be a lighthearted look at rejection. (Though, I’m not sure how.) It wasn’t.

Instead, Downside Up connected with the ugly reality we face in relationships. In some way, rejection has cut us all—leaving scars of all sizes—and some of us still bleed every day in our work, marriages, friends, churches, and even written correspondence.

Sometimes others’ rejection of us is intentional, but occasionally, it also represents our own inflated sensitivity. Regardless, the rejection we feel is real. By the way, I guess I could feel rejected as a man that the book seems to address women primarily (as does the promo video above), but there’s a lot here for men too.

Tracey Mitchell’s book does more than examine rejection from these various avenues of entry. Each chapter concludes with elements that I found the most helpful parts of the book:

  • Chapter Principles—if you read nothing but these, you’d get a good, general sense of the chapter’s contents as well as some great takeaways for application and renewing the mind against the raw feelings that rejection often brings. Super, super stuff here. These little nuggets are the best part of the book.
  • Words of Wisdom—offers a simple Bible verse that relates to the chapter’s theme. Good for memorization and even better for meditation.
  • Power Quote—a quote from various individuals that says in a few words something worth thinking about.
  • Plan of Action—offers a direct application to do what the book’s title says we should do with rejection: turn it upside-down.

My opinion was turned upside down after I read Downside Up.

If rejection is something that’s eating you, you’ll find encouragement here.

Tell me what you think: How do you deal with rejection? To leave a comment, just click here.

By the way, I received this book from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com® book review bloggers program. The review is my honest opinion. The FTC requires I tell you. See 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

How to Fix Your Relationship Problems

A father walked into the room to see his young son with his hand inside an expensive vase. The boy explained that he had dropped a penny in the vase. Now his hand was stuck.

The dad tried everything to free his son’s hand, but it was no use. It was wedged tight. Finally, the father grabbed a hammer to break the vase.

How to Fix Your Relationship Problems

(Photo by Photodune)

“Wait, Daddy!” the frightened boy said. “Would it help if I just let go of the penny?”

That story shows more than the mind of a naïve child. It illustrates the baffling priorities  we cling to—no matter how old we get.

You know what I mean. We often find ourselves at the breaking point of something valuable because we refuse to release something trivial. We cling to our pennies and break our vases.

And very often, those vases are our relationships.

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Judge Not, Lest Ye Be Judged—What Jesus Meant

Thankfully, He told us what He meant so we don't have to guess.

The best-known Bible verse used to be John 3:16. But our culture has a new favorite. In fact, it has become the trump card played to justify any and every lifestyle. It’s even a quote from Jesus.

Judge not, that ye be not judged.

Judge Not, Lest Ye Be Judged—What Jesus Meant

(Photo by Photodune)

The phrase is often quoted as “Judge not, lest ye be judged.” While the meaning is the same, it’s interesting we have learned the wrong wording from the 1611 King James Version. It should be: “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” The verse often is taken to mean nobody has the right to judge anybody for anything at any time.

The problem? The verse has a context. Jesus told us what He meant.

When Jesus spoke these words on the slopes surrounding the Sea of Galilee, He wasn’t saying never to judge. He simply warned about doing it the wrong way—by telling us how to make judgments the right way.

And believe me, it ain’t easy.

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I Call Shotgun [Book Review]

All godly fathers want to pass on a love for godly truths to their children.

I Call Shotgun is a collection of 64 “letters” from authors and fathers Tommy Newberry and Curt Beavers to their sons.

I Call Shotgun [Book Review]There are plenty of imitation sources of wisdom that are ready to offer ungodly alternatives to our children. By design, fathers are essential to impart godliness in their words and their actions.

This book purposes to impart wisdom through words.

“You only get one shot at life, son.” That’s a great summary of the book’s goal: to equip a son for life.

The introduction is necessary reading in order to make sense of the book. For example, without the introduction the text messages suggestions appear as pull quotes and don’t always relate to the content surrounding it.

Although the book is written from fathers to sons, the authors address other fathers in the introduction this way:

We are confident that you want to equip your son with the understanding and wisdom to succeed in the world today. We wrote this book with you [fathers] in mind.

Some Great Navigation

The letters serve as a catalyst for fathers to write their own letters to their sons, in order to help pass on a godly heritage.

The book’s title, I Call Shotgun, probably refers to the common phrase that requests someone who’ll ride beside the driver—perhaps as a navigator. The subtitle reflects this implication: Lessons from Dad for Navigating the Roads of Life.

Here are a few parts of the book I liked that offer helpful navigation for life:

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