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Archive for the 'Life Lessons' Category

No More Facebook

Posted by Mike on 12th February 2011

Deleting my Facebook account.I never did spend much time on Facebook.  I liked that I was able to connect with some old friends through Facebook. Why leave? In the end, Facebook is a virtual world that I don’t want to be a part of on a personal basis. Yes, I do want to be involved with my friends and family. but not through the public vehicle of Facebook. I will still keep my LinkedIn and Twitter accounts. Letters? Emails? Phone calls? Visits?  Yes, those I will like very much!

In case you want to leave Facebook too, here is a guide on how to delete your Facebook account.
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Freedom, Life Lessons, Productivity | No Comments »

Credit Card Freedom

Posted by Mike on 15th September 2010

Last month, I closed all my credit card accounts.  I sent the following email to a friend of mine.

I’M COMPLETELY FREE OF CREDIT CARDS!

I have not a one to my name or business.

It was fun calling them all and closing the accounts.  They all wanted to know why. My reasons, when I shared them, totally baffled them!

He replied with the following:

THIS IS FANTASTIC!!!!   You are now in the 15% of households with no credit cards. Ironically, as recently as 1970 only 15% of households had a credit card.  What a run it has been for the banks but a disaster for most families.  Keep up the good work!!

I used to think that having credit cards and paying them off each month was OK.  My friend tried to convince me that having credit cards would increase my spending and limit my ability to control my spending.  At the time, I didn’t agree with him.  However, when I decided to leave my corporate job, I needed to cut my spending in half.  That was when it really hit me.

It always surprised me when my credit card bill arrived, how it was always bigger than I expected. I was always able to pay it off, but it was a disappointment to do so and have to miss some other goal I had set with my money. Now that my credit cards are gone and all the bills paid off, it is a wonderful feeling to not receive those bills every month.

I will admit that it has been an adjustment to not just put it on my credit card when I needed or wanted to buy something.  It takes more planning and discipline to manage the budget this way.  But, isn’t that what I am trying to do?  I will also say that I am getting pretty close to cutting my spending in half from what I used to spend.  Pretty amazing, huh? Maybe it is true what I have heard, that you will spend 40% more with credit cards than without.

Posted in finances, Freedom, Life Lessons | No Comments »

What is made in America today?

Posted by Mike on 11th June 2010

My wife was doing laundry with our children and started writing down where the clothing was made. Not much was made in the U.S.A.

  • Czech Republic
  • Singapore
  • Honduras
  • Bahrain
  • Jamaica
  • Mexico
  • Taiwan
  • Jordan
  • Guatamala
  • Haiti
  • Brunei
  • Nicaragua
  • China
  • Dominican Republic
  • India
  • Darussalam
  • Canada
  • Costa Rica

Yes, there was an item Made in the U.S.A., but it was about 25 years old!

The people of the United States have lost the capability to produce their own clothing and many other necessities. What will we do if war comes to the world? I can answer this for you.  We will suffer.  Our nation used to be able to produce anything we needed from the natural resources within our borders.  Sadly, that knowledge and infrastructure has been lost.

I remember, back in the 80’s, when Wal-Mart tried to spur American manufacturing.  Sam Walton penned this letter to spur a change in the United State’s ever-widening trade deficit. The following quote is underlined for emphasis in the letter.

Our Wal-Mart Company is firmly committed to the philosophy of buying everything possible from suppliers who manufacture their products in the United States.

U.S. manufacturers could compete if there was a corporate will to do so. Sadly, the next quarter’s bottom line and the laws of our country almost mandate that our manufacturing capability be moved outside of the country.

I believe that hard times are on the horizon, perhaps even war.  Anyone have a good loom for sale?

And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you; — I Thessalonians 4:11 (KJV)

God bless, Mike

Posted in Freedom, Life Lessons | No Comments »

The truth shall make you free!

Posted by Mike on 16th January 2009

I came to the realization today, that I now understand a foundational truth from God.

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. — John 8:32

It’s really sad that it took 27 years as a believer to get to this point, but perhaps I am just that dense or stubborn.  I praise God that he gave me the time to get here.  I no longer have to fight my flesh because it died with Christ.  I didn’t have to fight it all these years, but that is what I was doing.  Yes, I needed to understand and believe the truth that I was crucified with Christ and my flesh is as dead as Jesus was.  My place is with Him and that is the truth, whether I knew it or not. I know it now.  I am grateful to my Lord.

I am not the same anymore.  I am right with God.

For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.  For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. — Romans 8:13-15

God bless, Mike

Posted in About God, Life Lessons | 2 Comments »

Validation

Posted by Mike on 14th November 2008

This short film takes about 16 minutes to watch. It’s definitely worth it!

Posted in General, Life Lessons | No Comments »

Need I say more?

Posted by Mike on 21st July 2008

Quoted from the Associated Press.

“I never thought I would hear myself saying this,” Dobson said in a radio broadcast to air Monday. “… While I am not endorsing Senator John McCain, the possibility is there that I might.”

What happened to?

Earlier, Dobson had said he could not in good conscience vote for McCain, citing the candidate’s support for embryonic stem cell research and opposition to a federal constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, as well as concerns about McCain’s temper and foul language.

The lessor of two evils is not a vote of conscience or beliefs. It is a pragmatic approach that furthers the decline of the United States. The Christian voting block is a large and powerful one. We can choose (and vote for) a candidate that will work hard to further a platform that is aligned with Biblical values. Read the platform of the Constitution Party.

It’s time to leave the Republican Party behind. Read the Promoting a Culture of Life section of the 2004 platform. For six years the GOP controlled the House, Senate, and the Executive Branch. Did they strike down abortion? No! I was shocked when I heard the chairman of the Iowa Republican Party admit on a radio program that he hadn’t had time to read the party platform!

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20 (KJV)

Don’t pick the lessor of two evils. Vote your convictions, Christian. It is your civic and moral duty.

Posted in About God, Freedom, Life Lessons | 1 Comment »

College and making a wise investment

Posted by Mike on 23rd May 2008

A little over a year ago, I put out a blog entry called The College CBA. Recently, Vox Day put out a post called More doubts about college. Then, there is an interesting discussion on the Promised Land blog for the post called Where Have All The Daughters Gone?. In it, the observation is made that college and career seems to be the preferred path for homeschooled daughters. Not to leave the sons out, based on my experience, there are many opportunities in the trades. (If you are service-oriented and do a good job at what you promise, you will do well.) I think it is most important that a young man prepare himself to support a wife and children, if he plans to get married. Once again, the bar is not very high for a young man to excel and set himself apart. A job well done or a quality product, or service, are not well known any more. A lot of opportunity is waiting and I do not believe that many of those opportunities absolutely require a college degree.

Posted in Freedom, Homeschool, Life Lessons | No Comments »

The College CBA

Posted by Mike on 16th February 2007

I was reading Don Tennant’s column in Computerworld today and the following quote from Michael Dell caught my attention. Don writes:

In that 2000 interview, I also asked Dell what the best decision he ever made was. “Dropping out of college and starting the company,” he said. “That was a good one.”

Looking at how things have turned out for Michael Dell, in the business world, you would have to agree.

Michael Robertson (of mp3.com and Linspire fame) wrote a thoughtful piece called The Biggest Gamble of Your Life (Is College Worth it?).

By all accounts, college isn’t for everyone.  Do what you love doing.  If that requires college, then by all means, do your best there.  Do the full analysis before heading off to college by default.

Posted in Homeschool, Life Lessons | 1 Comment »

Applying Life Lessons, Gained Through Experience

Posted by Mike on 8th October 2006

I was reflecting today about the past few months, and then years, and the experiences I have gone through. There have been many highs and lows. All in all, these have been growing experiences. Several major things have happened and I feel that it will be good to share some of them over the next few weeks.

I am a project manager by profession and a father by choice. Naturally, I will have observations to share that impact all facits of my life. Here is a short list of the things that have happened over the past few years, which I will be writing about. (In general, when I say “we,” I am referring to my wife and me.)

  1. My wife and I had two miscarriages.
  2. We helped plant a church and then God moved us out.
  3. We became licensed foster parents.
  4. We foster parented, and then adopted, a brother and sister.
  5. I was reassigned job responsibilities, at work.
  6. We are still working at blending two new children into our family that now totals seven.
  7. I have taken two FMLA leaves, to work on family issues, related to adoption.
  8. We started a new business venture called Ten Foot Table Incorporated.
  9. We moved our family to the country and started farming.
  10. We have struggled to find support from our extended family.

I don’t want you to think that the above list is a list of complaints, because it is not. We have been blessed in everything that has happened. I do believe what God says in Romans 8:28.

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 (KJV)

I look for the good in thes experiences. I search to see the truth in what has been taught me. I try to use my 20/20, hindsight, vision to reflect on what I have been through. I try to learn and become a doer of what I learned. I try to move forward in a better way.

I am a little afraid blogging about these things. For that reason, I will be careful about what I say. I want to share what I have learned, not complain about what I have been through. With these thoughts, I will strive to make these posts positive ones. I pray that it will benefit somebody. I know it will benefit me.

Posted in Life Lessons | No Comments »