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December 2008
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February 2009

Your Story

Every one of us has a story to tell. Your life is your story. Your story is your life. Like a story, your life has a beginning, a middle, and an ending. There is a theme, characters, subplots (work, family, health, happiness, friendship), trajectory, and tone. What kind of story is your life? A comedy? A drama? A thriller (horror) movie? A romance or a love story? An action movie? A fairy tale? In reality, each of our life stories is an EPIC. It’s a long journey with many scenes, experiences, twists and turns, characters, and smaller individual story lines.... Read more →

President Obama's Speech

Last week saw the swearing in of the 44th leader of the United States of America as Barack Obama officially began his role as president. President Obama's inauguration and speech can be viewed on You Tube by clicking here. A full transcript of his address is available from the New York Times web site (click here). Not everyone likes Obama. There are concerns about his policies on a number of important issues, including abortion (see Jim Wallace's recent article on this). President Obama is not perfect. He is not the messiah. He needs our prayers and God's wisdom. He plays... Read more →

Australia Day 2009

Today is Australia Day- an annual celebration, held every January 26th, of the arrival of the First Fleet in 1788, marking the colonisation of Australia by Great Britain. Having just read the book The First Fleet by David Hill, it is amazing that our nation, as it is today, even got started. England was sending convicts from its overflowing prisons to America when America's sudden independence (on July 4th, 1776) closed that door. Other locations were discussed, with Botany Bay being a last resort. The long trip out from England was marked by frequent crises and challenges, let alone the... Read more →

Back from Holidays ...

Our family has been on holidays for the last few weeks, which was really nice. A good holiday for me is one where I don't wear my watch and I've forgotten what day it is! We had a really relaxing time - eating, playing, laughing, swimming, reading, and sleeping. I even did some water-skiing, something I haven't done for a long time. I still managed to get up - the photo is proof :) No holidays are never long enough (another week or even another month would have been great!) but even good things eventually come to an end. So... Read more →


Creativity – it’s everywhere. Just have a look at the world around you – there is such a variety of shapes, colours, textures, movements, sounds, and even smells. There is nothing bland, boring, or predictable about the world. In fact, there are over 6 billion people on the planet right now and each one of them has a unique fingerprint. Talk about creativity! As you go through your day, ask yourself, “Is there a better way?” and “Could we do this differently?” Admit it when things are no longer working and make appropriate changes. Create an atmosphere around you that... Read more →


One of the characteristics of wise people is that they are open to feedback. Feedback from other people can give us needed insight not only into our own lives but to any issue or challenge we may be considering. If you reject feedback, you will hinder your own personal growth. All of us have things about ourselves that we are unaware of or don’t see. Only by being open to feedback from others can we learn about these areas and make positive changes. Every one of us has weaknesses. Usually other people see them before we do! My theory is... Read more →


Have you been to a funeral lately? If you have, I’m sure you’ve listened to various people give a tribute to the person who has passed away - stories that give you an insight into who the person was and the kind of impact they had on the people in their world. Take a moment to imagine your own funeral. I know it s a bit of a morbid thought ... but it’s worth doing. Imagine that four people are going to give a tribute about your life and the impact you had on them ... a friend, family member,... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.10)

Today we come to our final question. Here it is ... 10. "How Can I Make Sure I Achieve My Top Ten Goals?" One of the challenges in life is not so much knowing what to do but actually doing it. We often experience a knowing-doing gap. One simple key to achieving your top ten goals is to keep them visible. Type or write them up on a single piece of paper and keep them in plain sight so you see them every day. Awareness matters. Reading them every day will grab your attention and stimulate you to action. Plan... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.9)

Have a look through the goals you listed under each role yesterday. Reflect on them for a while. Then move on to our next question ... 9. "What Are My Top Ten Goals for This Year?" With too many goals you will lose focus. Create a game plan that you can accomplish. That way you won't be discouraged by good goals that you don't get around to completing, even though you had good intentions to do so. You don't have to eliminate any of the goals you wrote down. Just select ten that are the most important to you. You... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.8)

Let's move forward now and build on the questions we've already asked ourselves and answered over the previous week. Here is the next question ... 8. "What are My Goals for Each Role?" People who have goals achieve more result in life. That's a fact. People who know where they're going have a better change of getting there. If you don't know your direction, you risk just going in circles, living a life in which you exist but don't really grow or make progress. Education and intelligence are good things but goals are just as important. A goal is simply... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.7)

Yesterday's question was about listing our various roles so that we get a full perspective on our lives. Let's move on to our next question ... 7. "Which Role is My Major Focus for this Year?" Could you create a potential breakthrough in your life by selecting one of your roles as your major focus of attention for this year? Other roles will have goals as well, but where would you like to see the most improvement or the biggest change right now? Are there things that need adjustment? What is missing in your life? Is something getting too much... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.6)

Find another piece of paper and a pen to write with (or open up a document in your computer word processor). Here is is our sixth question ... 6. "What Roles Do I Play in My Life?" Answering this question helps you to get an overview of the various aspects and responsibilities of your life. It helps provide perspective and a holistic view of your life. Roles change over time and in different seasons of our life. Think about this year. Who are you? What are you responsible for? What are you accountable for? Merge some of your roles so... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.5)

Let's continue with our series of ten questions, as we take some time to reflect on our lives together at the start of another year. Our fifth question is ... 5. "What Are My Values?" What drives you? Why do you do what you do? What's important? What matters most? What effect do you want to have on other people? What do you want to be remembered for? Who are you? Who do you want to be? Take a piece of paper and make a list of your personal values. By writing them you strengthen your awareness of them. You... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.4)

I hope you are taking time to think about and answer each question as we move through this process. This investment of time will pay some good dividends in your life for your future. Personal reflection is a valuable exercise. A wise man named Socrates once said, "The unexamined life is not worth living." Let's move on to our fourth question ... 4. "How Do I Limit Myself and How Can I Stop?" Ultimately, our life is shaped by our own thoughts and actions, not by other people or the circumstances we encounter. Life is lived inside out. We are... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.3)

So far you've given a bit of time to reflect on your successes and your failures, joys and disappointments, victories, and defeats. Let's move on to the third question now ... 3. "What Did I Learn?" Look back over your answers to the first two questions. Look at your accomplishments. What can you learn from them? What possible lessons do you see? What were some of the keys to your success? What worked for you? Why were you able to accomplish these things? Now look over your answers to the second question - your disappointments. Any lessons there for you?... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.2)

Today, let's move on to our second question ... 2. "What Were My Biggest Disappointments?" I know this is a bit like reviewing the bad news but it's an important step to take. Pick up your pen and write them all down. Recall the times you disappointed yourself. Remember the times when others disappointed you. What dreams didn't come true? What expectations weren't fulfilled? What unexpected grief or trauma did you encounter? What didn't you get around to doing that you really wanted to do? Where did you fail? Taking time to think about what happened is important. Tell the... Read more →

A New Year - A Fresh Start (Pt.1)

First of all, happy New Year! I hope it is a good one for you. Over the next ten days, I'd like to take you through a process of standing back, taking stock, and then planning the next year of your life. We'll be looking at ten questions aimed at helping you to clarify your thinking in order to ensure that you live your life in a way that reflects what really matters most to you. Pray about each of the questions and think them through as thoroughly as possible. Here we go ... Question #1 - "What Did I... Read more →