After vacation....getting back into a rhythm

If you cheat it in the dark of the morning,  you'll
be found out under the bright lights
Joe Frazier 

Getting back into a familiar rhythm since returning from a 5 day vacation is usually more like "the tyranny of the urgent"  than "redeeming the routines." This time though, not so much, if at all.

In this morning's quiet-time I found myself drawn back to the Law of Consistency (from Maxwell's The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth )

Motivation gets you going, discipline keeps you growing

Thankfully, some good pause and reflection practice prior to leaving caused me to get engaged and well ahead of some things. Thus, the hard work and learning from prior mistakes kept new mistakes from happening.

And, the routines (efficient or not) were easier to re-engage in!

To that end............



Cathy and I got back last night from a fantastic 4 day cruise aboard the Carnival "Triumph."

Billy Braxdale, of the Braxdale Travel fame, was an incredible host!

Not only did we have a great time with each other, plenty of food and relaxation"s" (can you say "a lot of reading"), we also renewed a couple of old friendships and started new ones.

We also received some really good leadership training from Kerry and Brad Moore, Cash Matthews and Lysa Saavedra!  I'll be posting a bit the next few days from my notes and thoughts, but here's a tip I picked up from Cash Matthews, Founder of The Soloman Group -

To that end....dream BIG!

Blind spots. They're called that for a reason

To see something in your blind spot, you have to either move around, or, have someone point it out to you. Otherwise it's not a blind spot. Correct?

Normally, I need someone to point it out to me, or to utilize some sort of device.

I hate the not-so-not-normal when my blind spot slaps me to get my attention. That attention is usually costly.

To that end......

Some things you just do..everyday (even if you miss a day)

There are certain business things I need to do everyday that I put on my calendar as a recurring item -

  1. Emails to people I met yesterday
  2. add to database
  3. 15 minutes of social media posting. Schedule post for the day, or even week. Retweet/share post of those in my spheres of infuence (I have "follow" lists on Hootsuite to help recognize)
  4. Write 5-10 minutes of a blog post.

This is all done, along with printing out my calendar for the day before I ever look at email.

Thanks to Scott Carley for this "wait to view email" technique.

To that end.....

If I ever write a book on "God and Work" it will be named..

Sacred Work: What If God Designed Work to Make Me Holy More Than Me Happy?

These are some highlights of what I've learned about God's view of work over the past 23 years -
  • God is a worker. Always has been, still is
  • God created man and woman as His co-workers
  • Before the fall, God created work
  • Work is not the result of the curse
    • nature of work is good, not evil
    • work became hard after the fall
  • Through work we,
    • serve others
    • meet our personal and family needs
    • earn money to give to others
    • take what God has made and re-create new products and services
  • Christ's death did not change work, but the worker
    • Ghrist gives the worker the opportunity to be back in the right relationship with God
    • Christ wants to transform me as a worker
  • The Hebrew word for "to work" "to serve" and "to worship" is the same
  • In the New Testament, the focus of worship shifts from the temple to Jesus. Through my belief in Jesus, and with the help of the Holy Spirit whom Jesus sent, I can worship God anywhere.
And, I've learned God wants me to have a proper balance with all areas of my life, including my family and resting.

And prayer. What a difference pausing and praying makes to my work, my life. That time in the morning, on and off during the day, it makes a difference that goes past happy.

So what if work is more about making me holy?

To that end.......

There are still lies I believe!

Excited to hear Dr. Chris Thurman speak today at CRU/Priority Associates-Austin.

God has brought about some incredible changes in my life, despite my kicking and screaming. One of those was getting me to go to a men's retreat in 1990. Dr. Thurman was the speaker that Friday and Saturday.

His subject was "The Lies We Believe."

Forever grateful for how Dr. Thurman allowed God to speak so clearly through him that weekend.

To that end....

What does history have to say about Jesus?

The older I get, the more
relevant is the past.

As I get older I my thoughts go to the past more often. Not just my past, but the past. What does history, non-Biblical history, have to say about Jesus?

Here are some things I ran across this week -

Annuls 15.44 (c. 114 A.D.) - Roman historian, Tacitus, wrote that the founder of the Christian religion, Jesus Christ, was put to death by Pontius Pilate in the reign of the Roman Emperor Tiberius

Letters 10.96-97 - Pliny the Younger wrote a letter to the Emperor Trajan on the subject of Christ and Christians.

Antiquities 18.68 -(c. 90 A.D.) - Jewish historian Josephus penned a short biographical note on Jesus: "Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call Him a man, for He was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as received the truth with pleasure. He drew over to Him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was Christ."

Sanhedrin 43a, Adodoh Zeraj 16b-17a - The Talmud refers to Jesus of Nazareth

Interesting stuff. Huh?

"My name is Andre Agassi.....I play tennis for a living, even though I hate tennis. I hate it with a dark and secret passion, and always have." - from the opening paragraph of his autobiography "OPEN"

WOW! What a shocking statement from an incredible athlete who reached the pinnacle of his field.

How do you feel about your job? Do you hate your job/career, but continue to because of.......? Do you strive to be the best in the world at what you do, yet hate it? Agassi, while he hated playing tennis, he felt he had a job to do, a mission to fulfill. How do you feel about your job, or career? Do you feel you're called to do what you do? Do you struggle with the purpose - the why?

What's the goal-behind-the-goal

What's your goal-behind-your-goal? There's where jazz comes from.
- Paul Martinellie

Seeking clarity about the starting point

Today is the first day of the rest of your life
- Someone

Something else I've been pondering; clarity. How do I get clarity? Ask questions. How do I get really good clarity? Ask good questions. How do I get great clarity? Ask great questions.
And dig through them again, and again, and again.
And get someone to ask them to you. Again and again.
Seems like a lot of work? Yes. But.....what does the alternative bring me? Aha!
Here's some questions I'm asking, journaling, digging through. They can be found in John Maxwell's book The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth, pages 59-64....
1. What is my biggest asset?
2. What is my biggest liability?
3. What is my highest high?
4. What is my lowest low?
5. What is my most worthwhile emotion?
6. What is my least worthwhile emotion?
7. What is my best habit?
8. What is my worst habit?
9. What is most fulfilling to me?
10. What do I prize most highly?

To that end......praying for clarity

Another conversation with Smitty

When one day-at-a-time is just too long you just
pay attention to putting one foot in front of the other.
Very slowly.

Danny - It's not that I didn't appreciate 2012, I did. I do. But I'm really looking forward to 2013.

Smitty - Why?

Danny - God has a plan for me.

Smitty - So? He's always had one.

Danny - True, but I've never thought so much about it as I have been the past few weeks.

Smitty - So?

Danny - You don't get it? You've seen how much more focused I've been and how I've been digging into and pondering over those questions. I'm excited because I'm paying attention. I'm staying focused.

Smitty - Huh?

Danny - Huh? What do you mean HUH?

Smitty - Just what I said - HUH? You said "I've been paying attention and I'm focused" and I said "HUH?"

Danny - Ok. So you haven't noticed. Here's the thing - I've been pausing and reflecting. I've been asking myself some really good questions, becoming more aware of where I've been, who I am, where I want to go, and how I'm going to get there. Stuff like that.

Smitty - Stuff like that?

Danny - Yes, stuff like that.

Smitty - I don't get it.

Danny - What don't you get?

Smitty - You've always reflected. Your brother tells you you think to much.

Danny - Not the same thing.

Smitty - I'm getting tired of this.

Danny - See. That's normal.

Smitty - What's normal.

Danny - You're getting tired of this.

Smitty - Seriously? What does that mean.

Danny - You're just starting to get there and you drop your shovel and stop digging.

Smitty - Ok.....let me ask this...what's different this time? You said you're asking questions, pausing, reflecting. You do sound different THIS TIME.

Danny - God has brought some new people into my life and some new questions. And I have some accountability I haven't had some more. Still working on that, but it's more than before.

Smitty - Are you going to continue or do you just like messing with me.

Danny - Yes.

Smitty - You're an idiot.

Danny - LOL. But I'm having fun. Ok....2012 was a great year, but I'm super excited about 2013 because I've been learning some things from this book called "The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth." It's John Maxwell's 3rd book on "laws" and its insights and instructions are just what I needed to finish up a good year and get ready for a new one.

And, I've met some great people in 2012. I'm excited about those relationships, more new people I'll meet this year and where we'll all be a year from now.

And this book is really driving me to ask some questions I've never dug into before.

Smitty - But you've had a couple of detours right at the end of 2012.

Danny - Not detours. New directions for me and some close to me. That's not a bad thing. God has His plan and it's up to us to serve our purpose. This has changed my vision a bit, but not my mission.

Smitty - Yea, yea, yea. I read your blog post the last couple of days. Not sure I understand it.

But what if I want to get all wound up like you? You sound like you're really into making 2013 a BANNER YEAR. What if I want to do the same?

Danny - Read the 15 laws book and participate in one of the Mastermind Groups I'm hosting.

Smitty - What's a master mind?

Danny - Don't worry about what it is. If you trust me, just do it.

Smitty - Hmmm. I'd like to ask you more about those questions you've been asking yourself but I've spun you up enough for one morning.

Danny - You really do wear me out sometimes. But I still love you. Let me know if I can help you help yourself!

Smitty - Thanks. Don't give up on me!

Danny - I'm not, but you have to do something different.

Smitty - For the record....I have noticed.

Danny - I know you have.