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June 2007

Virginia Satir and My Telephone

I should think through my telephone greetings more strategically. This one just slipped out today on our home phone, "Good afternoon, Sims' People Factory."

I apologized - sort of - since the person on the other end was, up until that moment, unknown to me. Actually, the explanation, before I even asked who it was or what she was calling for, was most likely more of an imposition. I mused that we are all in the business of building people.

Eventually, I let her ask for my wife.

Andrea was not in the house so I, without prior permission, gave her cell phone number.

Satir And I remembered Virginia Satir.

Wouldn't you at a time like that?

Dr. Satir was the founder of conjoint family therapy, the forerunner of the self-esteem movement, and the author of books on family such as, "People Making" and "The New People Making"

She taught that families were in the people making business and we have a house full of folks being made. She also taught that adults can take responsibility for their own development by the choices they make.

Perhaps her best known quote is an affirmation:

I am Me. In all the world, there is no one else exactly like me. Everything that comes out of me is authentically mine, because I alone chose it -- I own everything about me: my body, my feelings, my mouth, my voice, all my actions, whether they be to others or myself. I own my fantasies, my dreams, my hopes, my fears. I own my triumphs and successes, all my failures and mistakes. Because I own all of me, I can become intimately acquainted with me. By so doing, I can love me and be friendly with all my parts. I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me, and other aspects that I do not know -- but as long as I am friendly and loving to myself, I can courageously and hopefully look for solutions to the puzzles and ways to find out more about me. However I look and sound, whatever I say and do, and whatever I think and feel at a given moment in time is authentically me. If later some parts of how I looked, sounded, thought, and felt turn out to be unfitting, I can discard that which is unfitting, keep the rest, and invent something new for that which I discarded. I can see, hear, feel, think, say, and do. I have the tools to survive, to be close to others, to be productive, and to make sense and order out of the world of people and things outside of me. I own me, and therefore, I can engineer me. I am me, and I am Okay.”

I believe that God is shaping us, but that He will not override our choices to make us what we are unwilling to become. At the same time, we need the freedom and power he provides to shortcut a l.ot of the garbage that is holding us back. Nevertheless, Dr. Satir speaks to my heart about the people making factory that is me and that is also my home.

It is a high calling for family, ministry, business - to help people become all that they can be upon the foundation of what God has already given them to be.

Here are some examples of the wisdom of this remarkable woman:


“Problems are not the problem; coping is the problem.”

 “Feelings of worth can flourish only in an atmosphere where individual differences are appreciated, mistakes are tolerated, communication is open, and rules are flexible - the kind of atmosphere that is found in a nurturing family”

 "We can learn something new anytime we believe we can”

 “Over the years I have developed a picture of what a human being living humanely is like. She is a person who understand, values and develops her body, finding it beautiful and useful; a person who is real and is willing to take risks, to be creative, to manifest competence, to change when the situation calls for it, and to find ways to accommodate to what is new and different, keeping that part of the old that is still useful and discarding what is not.”

 “Life is not what it's supposed to be. It is what it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.”

 And one of my favorites…

 “We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.”

Thanks to ThinkExist.Com

For more information on this extraordinary and gracious woman, visit the Virginia Satir Global Network. Dr. Satir died in 1988.

Stay On Your Toes


On your toes patricia-palma-984528-unsplash

Photo by Patricia Palma on UnsplashStay on your toes.

The admonition is to be alert and take nothing and no one for granted. Live life on tiptoe in anticipation, but also in awareness of  what is going on  over the horizon.

Boasting vs Believing About Tomorrow

We are to make faith declarations and dream statements as freely as we breath, but boasting is another matter. It presupposes that we are self-sufficient and need neither God nor other people to reach our aspirations and excludes gratitude from the success equation of our lives.

Thus, the writer of Proverbs declares (27:1).  "Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day will bring forth." (New International Version)

Of course we do not know. There are variables beyond our oversight and capacity to predict. We do not control other people's choices or the heartbeat of nature. There are larger purposes than our own and we function best when we view our lives as part of a larger plan and submit ourselves to a greater will.

When that happens, the dream that is planted within our hearts is a dream we must pursue and can pursue with divine guidance and power. However, we do not know what valleys of sorrow or storms of trouble through which we must pass.

We cannot boast about the time frame.

All that we can determine are our choices and our beliefs and these we must control or they will be controlled by the circumstance.

You can believe in tomorrow without boasting about it. You can predict your own success without presumption. You can embrace a life of faith without  assuming that there will be no battles to fight or hardships to bare. You can control your decisions without controlling all of your circumstances.

You can choose to be an overcomer without knowing what tomorrow will bring.

You can live in absolute ignorance of the specifics of the future and remain positive if you know and trust the One who holds tomorrow.

Another Form of Dangerous Boasting

One of the principles of network marketing is edification. we edify up-line and down-line. That is also true in the church, ministry, and every business and social endeavor.

Proverbs 27:2 says, "Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; someone else and not your own lips."

On might ask in panic, "How can I be sure that they will? If i don 't toot my own horn, who will toot it?"

Simple. It will be those you have built up in the eyes of others. They cannot wait to build you up. They will have, not only the desire, but the incentive, to increase the esteem others have of you by their own words.

The greater your credibility, the greater the credibility they can give to you when they speak.

third party credibility is the lifeblood of marketing and all forms of networking and it is the right thing to do.

Acknowledging all that as true, we return to the essence of the proverb: humility. It is the humble man or woman who does not destroy his or her own reputation through self-serving bragging. That sort f person undersells and over-delivers.

Dull Stupidity

Don't be stupid.

The word "stupid" is offensive to some and rightly so. It has to do with being in a permanent stupor or daze and letting life pass by without our notice, attention,l or intervention.

I know some really smart, stupid people who wander in and out of stupidity and allow their businesses, ministries, and lives to wander down paths of least resistance through minefields of needless danger with little awareness or care.

That is unnecessary.

Proverbs 27:12 says (NIV), "The prudent man sees danger and takes refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it."

How much trouble in your dealings can you chalk up to inattention to detail?

I know it is boring, especially for "hunters" like many of us. We are ambitious dreamers, focused on our multiple goals who do not want to be bothered with petty problems and possible snags in our drive toward success.

We must choose to be aware of the environments in which we operate or enter into stupors to our detriment.

That is what so many do when they dull their senses with chemical addictions and other forms of addictive behavior.

"If I don't see it," they delude themselves by declaring, "it is not a problem."

Wrong! It is when we don't see it that it becomes a problem. If we see it, especially down the road, we can take positive action and turn the potential danger into our own advantage.

Don't be stupid. Wake up and take the proper refuge.

Sharpen Up

Are you taking full advantage of the opportunities that come to you with arms and legs every day?

You have been gifted with associates above you and below you on charts made by human hands who have the capacity to add value to your life with every conversation and as you observe them.

Some of them make big mistakes, but even they are not useless. You can use them as examples of what not to do.

You can learn from everyone with whom you come into contact.

Proverbs 27:17 in the NIV says, "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another."

How does this happen? Many ways. Perhaps we can touch on a few of them with the word, SHARP.

S = Seeing - We observe the other person's life, choices, habits, techniques, strategies, behavior, and interactions and learn. If we will watch people closely, we will collect valuable information and will observe timeless principles being fleshed out in their lives. Paul once told some of the disciples to follow him as he followed Christ.

H = Hassle - The word means "struggle" or "contest," but we use it to refer to the resistance we sometimes get when we need to reevaluate our behaviors and choices. So it is sort of a struggle that begins within us and continues as others compete with us or challenge us about our behaviors. we get sharper and either change our choices or become stronger in them. Never discount the benefit of a good hassle.

A = Accountability - If we are never accountable to anyone, we will drift into an undisciplined and unproductive life. That is almost always true because God has made us for community and has designed systems of accountability into the framework of churches and businesses. Network marketing employs that principle. So, call your upline or your pastor, or your accountability partner and do it regularly.

R - Respect - We learn respect for ourselves by respecting others, We learn respect for others when we reverence and respect God and His handiwork in fashioning people so magnificently. When you look upon one of those polished pieces of iron with arms and legs, you are looking upon the very handiwork of God. You will get sharper by respecting people.

P - Practice - People give us the opportunity to practice principles, to practice our presentations, and to practice our principles. People sharpen people through practice, interaction, conversion, struggle, and shared labor.

Don't be a loner. If you make the choice to do it all yourself, by yourself, you will suffer unnecessary setbacks and delays. Let other people make you sharper and let them benefit through their association with you as well.

How is Your Fig Tree?

Proverbs 27:18 NIV) says, "He who tends  a fig tree will eat its fruit, and he who looks after his master will be honored."

This is pretty simple:

Do your job.

Do your best.

Then, do better.

Treat your job, if you still have one, like it is your own business and act in the boss's interest as if his or her success if yours.

Even if you are trying to retire with all the energy and ingenuity you have  during your off hours by building your own empire, do your job with diligence and be conscientious.

There will be fruit. Sometimes the fruit will grow in places you do not expect, but it will grow and you will eat it.

Of course, once you get your own fig tree, you will get a bigger share.

Counting Sheep

Some people think of counting sheep as a way of falling asleep. I would suggest it as a metaphor for staying awake and alert.

Proverbs 27:23-24 says (NIV), "Be sure to know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds; for riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations."

Your business or ministry will not thrive, grow, and prosper without your attention. Your people will not become all they can be without your help. Your organization will not be protected unless you protect it.

You must pay attention to what has been entrusted to you.

Your network needs your knowledge and you need to know what is going on.

Technology is your friend. We have phones, e-mail, databases, back offices, and so many tracking tools ... but we need to use them.

We cannot assume that everything will take care of itself and that matters will be OK if we ignore them. We need a hands-on approach while trusting people, systems, and the leaders we train. We have to know what is going on with our flocks.

You are a shepherd over your business or ministry. It is your job to care and guide.

Relaxed leadership is fine; disengaged leadership is disastrous. Inattentive and apathetic leadership hurts your entire organization and all the people in it.

Some of the things that require your attention are:

1. The raw numbers. You need to be tracking the internal trends within your system.

2. The attitudes and morale of your people. Look for subtleties that need to be addressed before they become problems.

3. The trends in your industry and in those societal factors that effect and affect your industry and the attitudes of people toward it. don't be the last to know.

4. Technological advances and innovations. Don't be caught off-guard.

These are just a few of the signposts to which you need to pay attention. The bottom line is: PAY ATTENTION!

The rest of the passage (25-27) is a promise:

"25 When the hay is removed and new growth appears

       and the grass from the hills is gathered in,

26 the lambs will provide you with clothing,
       and the goats with the price of a field.

27 You will have plenty of goats' milk
       to feed you and your family
       and to nourish your servant girls."

Substantive Faith

Faith, according to Hebrews 11:1 is substantive and evidential in an of itself.

Does that suggest that faith in anything proves the thing?

Yes and no.

Yes, faith, because of divine and universal principles set in motion from the time when God first created wisdom, dictates laws of belief and reality. No, because some things are real and other things are not. Truth is not relative, but it is dynamic.

There are realities that can be changed by our beliefs. Mountains can be moved. Circumstances can bend. Choices made in faith between a positive or negative outlook on the moment can change the meaning of the moment. Faith can change the individual who is doing the "faithing." Often that is enough to change the truth of the moment itself.

On the other hand, there are eternal truths and realities outside of our influence that simply are what they are and cannot be manipulated by our beliefs about them. God and His Word are constants in the universe and not even the universe and universal principles can alter them.

In the case of God and His Revelation, the only valid faith response is to conform, by faith to faith in Him and His will. It is unchanging and persistent and greater than our own realities or beliefs about them.

You may call it limits without limitations - the kind of freedom I give my 18 month old grandson when I define parameters within which he can wander at will and in which he feels absolute liberty to explore, express himself, and grow while enjoying, often without his own ability to understand, the safety of my watchful eye and protective gaze.

If he transgresses the limits into the realm of unknown dangers, I am there. As he grows older and more accountable for himself, he will venture forth into areas where I do not guide him. He will hit some walls and consequences which are real. Love compels me to let him grow and discover these for himself.

Even now,I must be willing to let him fall down on occasion. when he does, the ground below him does not move.

Grounding is real whether we believe in it or not.

The faith that the author of Hebrews addresses is faith founded on  foundational fundamentals and in the person of Jesus Christ. With Him are infinite possibilities but also, unbending truths. "Faithing" is what we do when we embrace the reality of God's sovereignty and filter everything we believe through faith in Him. It becomes the substance of all that we embrace and the evidence of all we proclaim in spite of all other indicators to the contrary.

Ask me how I am. I am great. It doesn't matter how I feel in the moment. By faith I know, it is well with my soul.

Go move a mountain!

The Religion Forum
Christian Fellowship Forum

Just a Word

You are the best you there is.
There is no competition.
You can do it better than anyone.
No one can take your place.
Along with that dynamic truth there are two,
Seemingly contradictory, but ultimately
Paradoxical and mysterious:
You are not yet the best you can be ...
Or will be ...
And ...
You can duplicate yourself and your efforts
In others who are  each, individually,
One Of A Kind
Like you.
The keys are ...
Appreciation ,
Investment, and
Stand in awe and wonder at God's creation of you.
Appreciate your own uniqueness and that of others.
Extend yourself beyond your immediate reach.
Invest in people and in your own development.
Commit yourself to the long haul.
By God's grace and power,
You can do it.
You are well on your way and you are ...
Oh So Special!
- Tom Sims

Yes! I Went to the Potholes

For whatever reason, perhaps knowing that Pastor Dave Wainscott would encourage me to do so, I went to the potholes. It was a mile down and a mile back. I was there long enough for all the kids at camp to see that I had made the trek, have a little fellowship, and cheer some of the kids on there hike back.

I'm glad I did it, Dave.

I Am Back

It is good to be back even if no one knew you were gone and even if you enjoyed where you went. Back is a wonderful place and suggests that there is somewhere we belong.

So I am back which suggests the question of where I have been. The answer is: CAMP.

I was at camp with Junior High students for the first part of last week and Elementary aged kids for the second. I was focused, absorbed, and squeezed dry of all my energy. it was a great week!

The key words for today are Focus, Camp, and Back.

Focus is what we give to what we are doing while we are doing it if we want to make the most of the experience and bring something back after it is over. Focus is the energy to stare down the moment and milk it for all it is worth. Focus is what enables us to engage ourselves and others in the importance of the present. It does not preclude multi-tasking and other wonderful ADHD hunter gifts, but it is a necessity for the success of any assignment.

Last week, my assignment was kids. Everything else took a back seat. Here is my acronym stew of the moment for focus:

Find Our Current Usefulness Satisfying.
Filter Out Conflicting  Urgencies Sincerely.
Float Over Crud. Unleash Significance.
Fail Often. Collect Understanding. Soar!

Or we might say:

F is for the Filter that tell us what must be done now and what can wait.

O  is for Opportunities that can be lost if we let ourselves be distracted from our primary goals.

C is for Concentration which is necessary in one degree or another if we are to accomplish our tasks. It is a concentration of energy and attention on where we are and what we are doing.

U is for Understanding the moment and embracing it with our strength, enthusiasm, and passion.

S is for significance. It is knowing and believing in the importance of our current assignment and throwing ourselves into it.

That is focus.

The second word is Camp. The idea of a camp reminds me of a temporary dwelling. Camping is not forever. For that reason, we can suspend normal activities and accept inconvenience. Camp is a short experience that can have long lasting benefits and can create deep and abiding, nurturing memories.

Our camp focus was the needs of the children and their opportunities for a giant leap of development in a few short days. it can happen quickly, but it requires that some adults sacrifice their living conditions, habits, lifestyle, and goals for a short time.

C for Children -Children come first at our camp. Even if you are having a camp-type experience for adults, it is the emerging child in you and them that you are seeking to develop with a new leap of progress.

A for Anyone - Anyone can go to camp and should. what is your "camp?" You might be able to even do it at home, but you need breaks from the routine for the sake of what can be accomplished through such concentrated refocus.

M for Meetings - When you go to camp you need to attend the meetings, meet new people or some new part of yourself. An essential for a good camp is gathering over a cup of coffee with new and old friends early in the morning and sorting out the problems of the world.

P for Pavilion - You will be sheltering yourself in conditions that may not be as comfortable as home because you are not at home. The Bible says that we are pilgrims tenting on earth, that our home is beyond this world and this life. It is good to get away from our luxuries occasionally to refocus.

The last word is BACK - It means that we have a place that is normal for us, where we belong, where we spend most of our time, and where we have a certain pace, lots of challenges, and countless opportunities. It is home.

B for Bed - My Bed is the most comfortable place in the world. I rest better in my own bed than anywhere on earth. Thanks to God for my bed, my home, my family, and my life.

A for Activity - It is my normal activity even though it changes. I make my calendar, schedule my priorities and act toward my goals.

C for Contentment - I am happy to be home. I am actually content as a learned function according to the Apostle Paul, anywhere. But I am most content where I spend most of my time. In these days, we can take many of the comforts of home anywhere we go. it was not lack of Internet access which curtailed my Internet activity in the mountains; it was lack of time. I am not an extremely routine person, but I do value the routines I have such as making my breakfast, studying in the mornings, writing my bulletins, and enjoying the familiar things in my life.

K for Keenness - Hopefully I have returned home sharper in some ways. I did not go to camp for myself, but I cannot help but benefit from it - even as I reflect upon it.

Greetings from Camp Sierra

I have a laptop and internet access here at Camp Sierra, but little time and the kids are our priority. This is the first opportunity I've had to post anything and it will be short.

I'll post something on top of this that is more of a reflection. At the moment, I am considering whether or not to hike 1 mile down to the "pot hole" and shock everyone to death.

I think I might - just doing the unexpected jazzes me up.

The Big Deal about Father's Day

I'll be heading for the mountains till next Saturday, so I won't be posting till then. It's all about camp. From today till Wednesday, we will have 6th-8th graders and from Wednesday through Saturday, 3rd - 6th graders. It is going to be wild and fun.

I am trying to get things in place to leave and it is tough. One of the toughest thins is to say something quick and profound about Father's Day and fatherhood.

On one hand, I say, "What's the big deal?" On the other, I know that it is a very big deal.

Our tendency is to congratulate mothers on Mother's Day and scold fathers on Father's Day.

That is not right. There may be a shortage of active fathers in this world, but there are many, many fully engaged dads, real and surrogate who are active in the lives of their minor and adult children, setting an example of manhood and integrity, and teaching a new generation what it means to live for God and others in a turbulent world.

It is a BIG deal.

B - We recognize the BEST of manhood in a good father. It is the best of manhood because it is an expression of the image of God in Him where he exercises the gifts that flow from the Fatherhood of God through his life and into the lives of his children. When a man is connected to the best God has to offer, he can give his best to others. Men were built for fatherhood and challenged in that role.

I - We celebrate INTEGRITY. My father taught it to me and I have tried to teach it to my children. I try to pass it on to my grandsons and the young men and women I mentor. Integrity is who you are when there is no payoff for doing the right thing, when no one is looking, keeping score, or rewarding your efforts. Integrity is being fully integrated in what we profess, possess, and practice.

G - The big deal about fatherhood is that it is a GOOD thing because it is a GOD thing. It is such a GIANT task that we need God's guidance, strength, and love to fulfill the role. It is such a GRAND thing that when your children have children, you become a GRAND-father. Our model for fatherhood is a Heavenly Father who loves us sacrificially and unconditionally and who holds us to a higher standard than we even imagine for ourselves, shaping us, encouraging us, and training us for GREATNESS.

Happy Father's Day.

I will see you in a week!

Brilliant Simplicity

Fran Briggs is brilliant as she preaches simplicity and duplication.

"Success in anything, including the "exposure" of any business, product and service comes down to creating and maintaining an environment which inspires, designing a dynamic plan, taking daily action on that plan, being tenaciously dedicated to a high level of expectation for specific results, and doing whatever it takes to get what needs to be done, done."
"It's that simple. "

"So don't make it hard."

Then she lifts up the importance of third party validation. Check out her material on MySpace at her page:  Fran Briggs

She reminded me of the scene from Forest Gump where the drill sergeant declares Forest to be something of a genius because he was able to adapt to a system and follow simple instructions.

Sometimes we call it "dumb simple."

To over complicate things is not brilliance. To simplify the complex is.

Chance the gardener in "Being There" with Peter Sellers becomes Chauncy Gardner by saying little and looking interested.  He is sought out for advice and even considered for high office even though he cannot write his own name.

Proverbs 17:28
Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent,  and discerning if he holds his tongue .

It is not that we need to be uninformed, naive, simple minded, and dull of thought, but we must humble ourselves to realize that our ingenuity may not be required for the task of networking as much as our perseverance, faith, hard work, and ability to take a system and not make it something that only we can do because we are so infatuated with our own creativity.

In network marketing, ministry, and any form of organizational development, real brilliance is in duplication, our skills at transferring skills in such a way as to enable the person to whom we are transferring them to transfer them to others.

If you can't duplicate it, you must service it forever - yourself.

We are in the business of building and releasing people who will build and release people. There is a place for your creativity and unique brilliance, but there is also a place for utter simplicity that can be passed on through generations of downline and bring hope to the Forest Gumps of the world ... who I think truly was brilliant.

Henry's Web

My friend, Henry Neufeld  asks a stimulating question on his blog from PaceSetters.

Formal and Informal Prayers - a Metaphor

June 10th, 2007 by Henry Neufeld

Some Christians believe that the right way to approach God in prayer is through a very formal prayer, often a written prayer. Others believe prayers should be spontaneous and express your own thoughts at a particular moment. I have had some excellent times with God both with written prayers, especially the Lord’s prayer and John 17, and with spontaneous prayer.

So how should we approach God?  I would suggest the answer is “yes.”  ... Read More.

It would also be well worth anyone's while to become a regular reader to Threads from Henry's Web.


Be Hungry

Proverbs 16:26 says (NIV), " A laborer's appetite works for him; his hunger drives him on."

It was the year 1975 and I had been married for less than a year. I had recently quit my job on a church staff and had turned down two j-o-b (just over broke) jobs for the opportunity to set my own hours (translate that: work 70 hours instead of 40), set my own limits, and set my own pay in the vacuum cleaner industry.

Only we called them "home maintenance systems"

In the training, our manager had placed a $100 bill under one of the chairs. I did not get it, but I did make the first sale in the group that night and got a $100 bonus on top of my commission.

I sold it to my wife and it still works in our home.

Back in the training, our leader said something I will never forget, something encouraging, uplifting, and comforting, "I hope you are all broke and badly in debt."

I felt my heart warmed ... or was that heartburn?

He meant that he wanted us hungry because without the hunger, we would not care enough. Without it, we would not be desperate enough to get up and do what needed to be done. we would not knock on the extra doors, walk the extra miles, or put forth the extra effort required to beat the numbers game that is sales.

It was raw sales without internet, tools, CDs, business cards, or brochures. We lugged around a huge piece of equipment in one hand and a "premium" gift in the other in hopes of bring invited in for a 1-and 1/2  hour demonstration and presentation.

We had to be hungry. I was starving and I sold 5 that summer including the one I sold to myself. There were two in one day, one in a house without carpet and a "No Solicitor's" sign on the front door.

I love to tell that story. It is my claim to sales fame.

Starvation would have taken deeper hold if it had not been for my wife's j-o-b, some savings, some preaching honorariums, and the five commissions.

but I got the point and gladly accepted the pastorate of two small country churches in August and turned in my home maintenance system.

But selling was in my blood and I have done it here and there ever since, both in the work of the ministry and helping to supplement my ministry in the world. I got the principle of big numbers and applied them to Sunday School enrollment campaigns. I came to understand necessity of appetite and hunger in driving us toward success.

Hunger is the prevention of a negative experience. Appetite is a positive propellant toward a goal or dream that we have so deeply embraced that to be without it is painful, unbearable, and disastrous. it is the kind of pain that works for us because it gets us up and gets us going.

Where do your hunger and appetites lie? If you are not consumed by any, get some.  Otherwise, you will stay where you are, satisfied and stagnant.

Feel those pangs!

NOTE: Sometimes on the road to our larger dreams, we need to generate a financial base to support what we feel called and driven to do and to be. I have found several options for laying that foundation in the areas of network and affiliate marketing. Work from home on your own schedule and make the time you need to pursue your passions. My primary network marketing commitment is Prepaid Legal and it would be an honor to help you build a Prepaid Legal business. To find out more, visit this site: Getting Paid Daily. If that does not work for you, I am now working with some people who are distributing ACT energy drinks as one of my streams of income and helping people set up profitable businesses in that growing industry. Visit this ACT site All of this information and an annotated list of opportunity links can be found on my MySpace page, at the Dream Factory, and here at: INCOME OPPORTUNITIES WITH TOM SIMS

Asked and Answered on AnswerBag.Com

I've been having a little fun today and answered a truckload of questions on Answerbag. Here are three that I had fun with:

What is the glue that sticks together a broken heart?

It is the glue of experience and compassion, of giving and receiving love. It is the glue of loving when love is not returned, of laughter, tears, and time. It is the glue of renewed purpose and passion for life itself. it is the glue of a dream and a mission. it is the grace of God and the friendship of good people. The glue that heals is a composite of all these things, but it is strong and flexible.

You have been offered the opportunity to "build" an ideal president of the United States as a composite of the best characteristics of all the candidates in the field. What will you take from each to construct your model president?

The charisma, freshness and good looks of Obama

The crusty credibility of Fred Thompson

The good common sense of Joe Biden

Wesley Clark's understanding of the military

Mitt Romney's business talents and understanding

The feisty courage of McCain

Howard Dean's outbursts - I liked that about him

The independence of Ron Paul

John Edwards' accent, likability, and wife

Dodd's intellect

Brownback's views on a couple of issues, especially pro-life

Giuliani's administrative skills

Gore's environmentalism

Ralph Nader's irrational perseverance and tenacity, with a touch of sarcasm and sassiness

Jerry Brown (who has neither chance nor interest) because he is not impressed by power

Clinton's campaign strategy and political savvy

Huckabee's integrity

Mike Bloomburg's ability to make and manage money

Gilmore's home state - The Mother of Presidents has been a little barren.

Kucinich for peace and freedom

Reagan's humor and compassion (something from the past)

Carter's understanding of world affairs and appreciation of the complexity of foreign policy (also from the past)

George Bush's aborted dream of utilizing faith based institutions to partner with communities for community development

George H.W. Bush's gracious spirit

Bill Clinton's speaking ability

LBJ's bear hug and humor

Nixon's diplomatic abilities

Truman's honesty and no-nonsense approach

Kennedy's ability to assemble the best people for his team

What is left?

Vulnerability - the ability to admit that you have changed your mind when presented with better facts and that is OK, that you have made some mistakes, that your record is not spotless, that you are human, that you may be wrong, that you have been wrong, that you can laugh at yourself, and that some special interest groups are really making fools of themselves even though you respect their humanity and right to petition their government.

Also missing quite often - respect for the opinions of others and a deep distrust of partisan politics.

Put all of that together with great leadership abilities and the ability to win an election and shazzzam, you've got a great president.

Remember, however, that most great presidents were rather unlikely candidates.

What lame excuse would you use to get out of jail?

Having sat through many court hearings as an observer, it has become my conviction that no excuse works. The best one seems to be, "I did it; I was wrong; How can i make this right?

If that doesn't work, try these:

The house was on fire when I arrived. I set another fire as a backfire in the hopes of saving the house.

The tree was moving toward my car at a rapid rate of speed.

Your honor, I was drunk, I had no idea I was behind the wheel of the car. if I had known, I would have never driven down the street.

What?!?! I have $100,000 in my account? Where did it come from? Is it mine? Can I spend it?

It wasn't me. It was my evil clone. You'd better catch him before he does some real damages. He has all my fantasies and none of my self-control. I can help if you will release me.

Your honor, I am an agent of the FBCIAI, an organization so top-secret that I cannot tell or even know what the initials stand for. I am on a vital mission for our government and the President has requested that you release me. The survival of humanity is at stake.

 I am not as think as you drunk I am.

Ruth Graham - On to Glory



Ruth Bell Graham now knows what we will have to wait to find out. She knows what it is to stand in the presence of the Lord she has loved and served all these years, free of pain, young again, and rejoicing with the angels and saints of the ages. She is home.

I first heard of Ruth's death from some blogger friends and there has been a swelling of emotion in my heart and moisture in my eyes. What a giant among women! I have often wondered how I would feel when I received word of Billy's passing. I am feeling some of that now with the death of this grand and faithful lady. My heart is with Billy and the family and there are tears in my eyes. She was the heroine behind the hero. She held a family together and caused it to thrive while Billy traveled the world. She was a giant among women and a true soldier of the cross. In these recent years, she has been very ill and frail and Billy has been by her side daily, reading the scriptures with her and loving her.

I know he rejoices in her victory and is devastated by the loss.

Here is an excerpt of his statement:

"Ruth was my life partner, and we were called by God as a team," Billy Graham said in a statement. "No one else could have borne the load that she carried. She was a vital and integral part of our ministry, and my work through the years would have been impossible without her encouragement and support.

"I am so grateful to the Lord that He gave me Ruth, and especially for these last few years we've had in the mountains together. We've rekindled the romance of our youth, and my love for her continued to grow deeper every day. I will miss her terribly, and look forward even more to the day I can join her in Heaven."

It is what I call happy/sad to say goodbye to Ruth Graham. Thank you for letting me know. Here is a news link:  Ruth Graham  and here is the tribute from the Billy Graham Evangelisitc Association: Tribute The daughter of missionary doctor, Nelson Bell, Ruth began life in China and  always had the heart of a missionary. She was a prolific and inspirational writer and a devoted mother and wife.

Once asked if she had ever considered divorcing Billy, she joked that she had never considered divorce, murder maybe, but not divorce.

Everyone who knew her understood it was joking. Her humor was legendary. Her pastor's wife wrote:

This is just an instance of her sense of humor. She was always so kind to think of giving me gifts at Christmas—she did this for many people. But one Christmas she gave me a needlepoint pictue with a mule on it, and the words on it were, “If at first you don’t succeed, nag, nag, nag.” She always had such a cute sense of humor. Dorothy Thielman, wife of Calvin Thielman, the Grahams’ longtime pastor in Montreat

She created a refuge for a world citizen to which he could retreat from the limelight and be himself. Without Ruth Graham, the ministry of Billy Graham could not have happened.

Congratulations to Ruth Graham on her graduation to glory!



Network Marketing Update

I am here primarily to write and to encourage people in ministry, network marketing, and other entrepreneurial endeavors. If that is all I do, that is fine. A few years back while I was preparing to turn 50, I asked God what my life mission would be. The answer became clear to me that it was to encourage people to become all that they could be by His grace and power. I do that best as a pastor, writer, coach, and speaker.

I am also a network marketer  - for several reasons:

(1) I believe in creating multiple streams of income in this chaotic world.
(2) I have the entrepreneurial "URGE" in business and in ministry.
(3) I believe in the concept of creating residual income.
(4) I believe in time leveraging so that we work smarter as we work harder.
(5) I enjoy people and network marketing is all about people.
(6) Some of the best educational systems for encouraging people, on earth, are in network marketing organizations.
(7) It is a tremendous outlet for sharing my faith in Jesus Christ.
(8) It is one of the few ways i know for ordinary people to get ahead.
(9) It is something I can put in peoples' hands when I am encouraging them and  ministering to them that can help them with their goals, dreams, and personal finances. Much of my pastoral care during 32 years of ministry has touched to the financial struggles of families. Here is a practical way I can help them, plugging them into a support system while I focus on the more important spiritual issues in their lives.
(11) The field is full of positive thinking people who refuse to give up.
(12) The principle of helping others is vital to success in the industry. You focus on the success of others and your own success follows.
(13) There is an emphasis on teamwork.
(14) I need to be in it, at least somewhat, in order to teach about it.
(15) The principles are universal, transferable, and biblical.
(16) Extraordinary time freedom and flexibility.
(17) you are your OWN boss and it is YOUR business.

My business pursuits are decidedly not number one in my life - my relationship with Jesus Christ comes first, then my family, and God's specific calling on my life as a pastor and preacher - but supporting myself and encouraging others in business are a part of the mix.

I recommend that many people find a home-based business in the network marketing industry, be sensible about it, commit themselves to it, and incorporate it into their lives and ministries. I recommend this for families young people, retired people, and folks who need to supplement their income in ministry. I recommend that they find a product and system they can believe in, a team they like and trust, and a company that is credible.

Some will ask you to give yourselves exclusively to one venture. Others will allow for more.

I will encourage you no matter what organization you get involved with. After all, my life work is to encourage. I would also be willing to sponsor/mentor you in one of my affiliations or one with which I am indirectly associated through my company, Workshops to Go and its associates.

If any of my links intrigue you, check them out. These are good opportunities, but you need to find the one that is right for you. I am not adding any new ones at the moment, but I am happy to recommend you and yours if I see something powerful.

Let me say that every one of these companies owes a giant debt of gratitude to the vision of Amway and Quixtar in creating the concept of multi-level marketing and to Dexter Yager for inventing a training system that is second to none. While I am no longer affiliated with them, if you find a team that is right for you and their marketing plan appeals to you, go for it.

I would love to hear from some of my young friends as well  as pastors and my senior friends.

I am your pastor, encourager, coach, and friend,

- Tom Sims (559-647-2203, [email protected])

The DREAM FACTORY - PastorTomSims.Com 

Tom's Blogsphere - I have quite a few blogs on any number of subjects, lots of affiliates, and

My primary network marketing commitment is Prepaid Legal. it would be an honor to help you build a Prepaid Legal business. To find out more, visit this site: Getting Paid Daily.

I am now working with some people who are distributing ACT energy drinks as one of my streams of income and helping people set up profitable businesses in that growing industry. Visit this ACT site.

Health and Wellness Business - the Next Trillion Dollar Industry
Drink XanGo™  - Mangosteen Journal - a blog on the benefits of mangosteen for health.
Healthy Foods For You - A blog with news and views of nutrition and the nutritional industry.
Mangosteen Health Benefits and Business Opportunity - This company offers a patented product using the whole fruit puree of the mangosteen fruit, rich in Xanthones. They also have a powerful compensation plan and business model. This is one of the fastest growing companies in the industry.
The Three Hour Diet - An affiliate of mine.
Eniva - VIBE - It costs nothing to join and the products are outstanding. Everyone needs supplements. I was impressed with one of the distributors and what I read about the product and the company.
ACT Energy - a solid and growing business with a healthy energy drink as its core product.
PrePaid Legal
Get paid Daily on the Internet - Prepaid Legal is a wonderful opportunity, a solid  and unique product, and an extremely credible company. This is my primary network marketing venture.
Protect Your Identity
Identity Theft Shield
Legal Services for Less than a Cup of Coffee a Day

Other Business Opportunities
Free Ticket to Income for Life - An online business through Global Domains International building on the WS domain explosion.  This may be right for you.

This Tag Thing

One of my favorite readers and fellow bloggers, Kievas Fargo is always so encouraging to me and writes such wonderful posts. He sent me a tag. It is not my strong suit and I am not sure what to do with it, but I will do my best.

I've been tagged: Eight random facts    


 Kievas has tagged me, and I have to find another eight victims. First, here are the rules:

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.

2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.

3.At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.

4. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

Okay, here are eight random facts about me:

  1. I have developed a MySpace habit that has been growing every day.
  2. I once sold a vacuum cleaner in a house without carpet.
  3. I really hate these sorts of online games and usually ignore them - even from people I like.
  4. I am wearing new shoes and shorts and that is a very satisfying experience.
  5. There are two dogs, one cat, two skunks, and several other critters buried in my back yard.
  6. I drive a Buick, which is not nearly as important as the fact that it runs and has air conditioning.
  7. My 25 year old son just bought a car and that is very exciting because I have been demoted from the lofty job of being his driver and am now just his dad.
  8. I have no idea who I will send this to. What is the penalty for being a total flake?

Now, there must be a point to this and I think I will invent an acronym and condition for it - TAG AVERSION  (I'll just do TAG).

T - Temperament transparently  tainted and totally  testy about such things. (No offense, my friend, i'm just a curmudgeon).

A - Actually - pretty fun - this time - don't tell anyone.

G  - Giant grunt  - No words to describe initial reaction and I am seldom without words.

I was beginning to feel that I was doing a lot of preaching here and very little self-disclosure, so this came at an opportune time. - not that anyone wants to know.

On Fear, Faith, and Failure - RIPE-O with TYPEOS

Feeding and Starving

You have heard that fear is false evidence appearing real.

I thought I'd off a few more and it is an exercise for me because I am thinking them up as I type:

Faith-less Energy Acting Proud
Future Entanglements Affecting (the) Present
Failure Exorcising Actual Possibilities

I could go on all day and get better at this, but that would miss the point: FEAR is useful only in  three areas:

1) To protect us in emergencies when we need flight or fight responses.
2) To create a sense of awe, reverence, and worship in us for God so that we can be delivered from all other fears.
3) To remind us not to be stupid and take unnecessary risks with no hope of reward just to show off or make a silly point - and that is not so much fear as #2.

Fear was never meant to be an operating principle in our life with regard to the circumstances and challenges we encounter on  a daily basis. Nor is it to be a steady and constant nagging in our lives, relationships, and planning.

Faith is the antithesis of fear and the resting place for our emotions and decisions.

Fight faith with fear.

Feed your faith.

Starve your fears.

Whichever one you feed will grow.

The other will diminish.

Your choice. 

Starving Fear

There are some simple strategies for starving fear. I will not try to articulate them all here, but I will offer a few.

1) Choose not to dwell on them, read about them, listen to media that validates them.

2) Do not present them in conversation to someone who will advise you to live by them. You normally know the kind of advice you will get from the various people in your life and you often choose who to ask for advice based upon what you think you will hear. Admit it. Get better advice.

3) Replace fear thoughts with faith thoughts.

4) Do the things necessary to feed faith.

5) Face something you fear. Make a list of things you are afraid to conquer and take one at a time. Do what terrifies you and move the fear notation to the faith-victory column.

6) Pray.

7) Enlist a support partner/cheerleader.

What fear will you start starving today?

Let me know if you want me to pray with/for you about that. I WILL!

Feeding Faith

Feeding faith is a proactive and energy rich pursuit and yet, it is a whole lot easier than starving fear because its rewards are so obvious and immediate.

When I talk about feeding faith, I am also referring to your dreams because they are visualizations of which your faith informs you and which require faith to bring to pass.

This is just a starter for you.

1) Feed your faith with truth. If fear is false evidence appearing real and, if faith is the antithesis of fear, then faith must be truth. Feed faith truth and watch faith grow.

2) Feed faith energy. In the same way that you take vitamins and good energy enriched vegetables into your bodies, take faith pills, charged with positive energy. You do that by acting in faith daily. What comes out of you, comes back to you. It charges you.

3) Feed your faith with contact. Visit your dreams often in your mind and in person. Touch things that remind you of your dreams.

4) Feed your faith with excellent input - good books, including the Bible, positive audio and video, good conversation with positive people, and faith/dream-building functions and workshops.

5) Spend time with your support team if you are involved with network marketing. Call your upline every day.

6) Do something every day that is goal oriented.

7) Get adequate rest, nutrition, exercise, and family time. Do not allow yourself to get depressed by "wearing yourself out to get rich." balance your life, renew your energy, and stay fit for faith.

8) Turn on the lights and open the blinds. Dark rooms are depressing and discouraging.

9) Call someone and encourage them today. If you are a network marketer, call your downline.

10) Pray.

11) Smile and accept inconveniences and adversity with cheer. Find some lemon today that you can turn to lemonade.

12) Write something positive. Perhaps you could write a note to a friend to say, "You can do it!"

I'll quit for now, but know this, I always have more to say ...

What will you do right now to fed faith, not just today TIGHT NOW?

Let me know if you want me to pray with/for you about that. I WILL!

My Friends Advised Me

While we are at the feeding trough, feeding our faith/dreams and starving our fears, I have one itty bitty little concern. It is wrapped up in a recurring phrase I hear after people go away to "think about it," whatever "IT" might be at the moment.

They come back and say, "I talked to my friends and THEY advised me ..."

What follows is usually something negative or fear-feeding, any sort of support for not launching out in faith, dreaming a new dream, or making oneself vulnerable to failure or exposure.

I have no doubt that your friends, perhaps good friends and family have advised you to play it safe. That is there job, as they perceive it, to steal your dreams - AND YOU KNOW IT.

You knew it when you CHOSE THEM to ask for advise.

The question is back on you when presented with an opportunity. All things being equal, are you willing to stretch and expose yourself, risk failure, grow, try something new, and become more than you are in order to embrace a credible, honest, and powerful opportunity? If so, seek advice from winners. If not, seek out people who will feed your fears.

I hate to be blunt, but I will do it anyway < :) >

I believe in you.

What If I Fail?

Here is another question:

"What if I fail?"

What if you do?

It is not a matter if you will fail trying or not; it is more at what, how often, when, and what you you do with the failure.

You will fail by not trying, you just won't know about it or learn from those failures - but you will have the same results otherwise.

But learning is a very big deal and knowing what does not work for you is priceless and these are lessons that are never learned without risky action.

I hope you do fail. As John  Maxwell says, "Fail early, fail often; and fail forward."

Let each failure be a springboard toward future success.

You'll have to swallow pride and love of safety. You'll have to risk looking silly and exposed. You'll ha e to work a little harder than most people, dream bigger dreams, and develop a thicker skin, but you will be a more fulfilled and purposeful person.

People who never fail are simply failures.

People who risk, fail, learn, and grow are never failures. For them, as Maxwell says, failure is simply an event.

If your excuse for not attempting an adventure is that there is no guarantee for success, then understand that is a lousy excuse. it is your prerogative to use it, but don't try to convince me that it is a good one.

Nothing is guaranteed except the Word of God and His eternal grace and presence. Frankly, that is all I need. The rest is a grand adventure.

Are you on it with me?

I would love to share it with you.

What say you?


I write fast and furious and make a lot of mistakes, but I post them anyway and discover them later.

I have been online actively since 1992 and I have learned that my tuping ees somtims incerrect and that my speeklink cen be atroshious.

I correct mistake as I see them, but I try not to let the fear of them cripple me or keep me from saying what needs to be said, what is bubbling up within me.


Then Tom, what is the Meta For?

It is for YOU!

Don't be so uptight about making mistakes.

Funny I should say, "upTIGHT" because a few posts ago, I typed, "TIGHT NOW" when I meant to type, "RIGHT NOW."

I could go back and correct it and I am fixing it in my blogs, but I have decided to leave it to illustrate my point.

go ahead and risk making mistakes. Make them blatant so that they can be corrected. I learned this in the study of music in voice lessons and ensemble study. My teachers,  who had both studied with Dr. Williamson at Westminster Choir College said, "If you are going to make a mistake, make a good one so we can fix it."

What are we afraid of?

Not being perfect?

Being corrected?

Looking foolish?

That is an outstanding recipe for a lifetime of big "F" failure rather than for for success built upon little "f" failures.

Do not be afraid of imperfection, criticism, or correction. Starve that fear and move on to faith and dreaming.

Put it out there. Put yourself out there and GROW!!!!!

My stuff is RIPE-O with TYOE-Os.

Come join me.

I am your pastor, encourager, friend, and coach ...

- Tom Sims The DREAM FACTORY - PastorTomSims.Com

Tom's Blogsphere


My primary network marketing commitment is Pre Paid Legal. it would be an honor to help you build a Pre Paid Legal business. To find out more, visit this site: Getting Paid Daily

Just an Encouragement

Life is an adventure of discovery and becoming.
Every reach beyond our reach moves us toward the prize.
We grieve; we grow; we are grateful.
We laugh; we love; we lift each other above the losses and longings.
We live and in our living, we give ourselves to those whose air we share.
We are built for community.
We are hard-wired for collaboration.
We are designed to convene together and dream great dreams and attempt great ventures.
We are intricately fashioned to fathom what is invisible to the eye so that we might understand what is outside the realm of the mundane.
God has made us to encourage each other and be encouraged ourselves.
I believe in your success because I believe in your Creator.
Feed your dreams and starve your fears.
Whichever one you feed will grow.
Your encourager, coach, pastor, and friend,  - Tom Sims


Selling is an honorable profession. Not only is it honorable, it necessary for the well being of economies, peoples, and the needy. Sales facilitates distribution and distribution brings the necessities of life to our doors. If the distribution system were to break down, we would be plunged into a rapidly escalating worldwide crisis of hunger. Our life support systems would come to a halt. Medicines would not be delivered. people would die; others would suffer.

Never apologize for selling. As a direct  or network marketer, you probably have many names for what you do, but the selling part is honorable. You are the life blood of the economy.

You move things.

You are an educator.

You feed, clothe, heal, and provide essential services for the masses.

You encourage people and give them hope.

You build communities.

Solomon develops a contrast between hoarders and sellers. See it in four different translations.

Proverbs 11:26:
The King James Version - "He that withholdeth corn, the people shall curse him: but blessing shall be upon the head of him that selleth it."

The Message - "Curses on those who drive a hard bargain!Blessings on all who play fair and square!"

The New Living Translation - "People curse those who hoard their grain,but they bless the one who sells in time of need."

The New International Version - "People curse the man who hoards grain, but blessing crowns him who is willing to sell."

Selling is, as The Message translates it, the art of "playing fair and square."

There are times for giving things away, but nothing can be sustained that way. A fair and quality product for a fair price is a win-win scenario that keeps production and distribution alive.

Hoarding is selfish and unproductive.

What do we hoard?

Sometimes we hoard information that would help people make better decisions, buy better products, improve their lives, and create a better income and lifestyle.

D.T. Niles said that evangelism is one beggar telling another beggar where he found bread. In a way, so is sales. Not to tell is to let the other person starve for lack of information.

Hold your head up high; you are doing important work. Now, go out and DO IT!

Still Not Ready?

Here is an acronym to empower your resolve: The FAIR DEAL

F = Facilitation
- If you are dealing fairly with people, you are the facilitator of a process that they really want and need to happen. You are a facilitator, not a manipulator. You are helping them reach THEIR GOALS AND GET WHAT THEY WANT AND NEED. Is this not also true of evangelism?

A = Acquisition   - Things need to move from hand to hand along a pipeline from point of origination to point of use. You help that happen by providing the support, information, guidance, and contacts that make it possible. As sales professional, you are a servant in the arena of acquisition.

I = Integrity - People choose to do business with you because they know you, like you, and trust you. Integrity bolsters this trust. You must always do your best to tell the truth and act in an honest, ethical, and forthright manner in all you do. You will elevated the profession of sales, the ministry of evangelism, or even the pastorate by your integrity. Lack of integrity in any of these areas of endeavor is devastating to the reputation of all. Solomon advocates fair dealing. Proverbs 11:1 says, " The LORD abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight."  Integrity always pays in the long run.

Here are some helps for operating with integrity:

  • Under sell and over deliver. Make that a habit. Always surprise people by doing more than you promise, faster than you guaranteed, and with a bigger smile than when they signed the contract.
  • Admit your lack of knowledge and willingness to try to find answers. Don't make them up.
  • Rehearse the truth not a lie. What you say in private will lodge itself in your mind and emerge from your lips.
  • Don't try to elevate your product or business opportunity by cutting someone else's down.
  • Sell only what you can believe in without doing mental contortions.If you do not believe your own message, find one you believe and deliver it.

R = Relationships - Remember that selling is not a product business; it is a people business. work constantly on your people skills and highly value people. Love them. Try to get them the best deal. Serve them. enjoy them. Never see them merely as a means to an end. People can see through that. Make a friend and earn a long term business relationship. All of this works in ministry as well.

D = Dependability
- With all the integrity in the world, if you are flaky and sloppy about your appointments, other people's time, and your commitment to returning calls and correspondence in a timely and courteous many, you will be perceived rightly as undependable. If you have to wear yourself out at anything, make it in the area of promise keeping and respect for the time of the people you serve.

E - Even-handedness - For a deal to be fair, everyone must win. No one goes away thinking he "took" the other. There is a mutual understanding that the seller deserves a fair profit and the buyer deserves a fair price.

A - After-the-sale Attention
- If you are going to do repeat business with someone, it will most often be because you stand by your product and remember your clients after the transaction of the deal. They are, after all, now your friends. Remember them. Stay in touch with them. Do little things for them. Most of all, make sure that they are happy with the deal and, if not, try to fix it.

L = Leverage - In network marketing, we talk a lot about time leveraging. Sales is all about leveraging - time, people, knowledge, contacts, associations, affiliations, and our ability to expedite matters. There is nothing wrong with taking advantage of the power of leverage to improve the product that our clients receive and the profitability of our own efforts and that of our teams. Along the way, you will find people who see the power of leveraging and you can invite them to share its benefits by becoming part of your team.

Go out and do it now and know that you are an important part of making the world go around today.

Andy  Andrews Affiliate Link

Tom's Blogsphere


My primary network marketing commitment is Pre Paid Legal. it would be an honor to help you build a Pre Paid Legal business. To find out more, visit this site: Getting Paid Daily


Sunday Again

I am getting ready to leave for church. Perhaps some of you will join me.

The overlap between principles of missional church planting and entrepreneurial ventures is constantly surprising me.

My message today will touch to some of those keys areas with a focus on missional church planting.

If you are a network marketer, you must employ some of the same skills that I use as a pastor. While you, in that role, are not entrusted specifically with teaching eternal truth and watching over the eternal destiny of souls, you are entrusted with people's lives and dreams.

You are watching over a flock in ways that goes beyond a bottom line and production.

You are engaged in people building. If you build people, you will build your network marketing business.

Pastors could learn a lot from network marketers as well.

As the weeks and months go by, I will be writing on some of these overlaps and hopefully benefiting people in both spheres as well as those, who like me, live in both worlds.

One key to both is placing a high value on people and seeing them not as tools we can use to reach our goals, but as the objects of our service and the focus of our businesses and ministries. It is seeing and loving people as God sees and loves them.

The temptations in both ministry and business delude us into thinking we can use people to achieve our ends. Rather, we are called in both arenas to serve God by equipping people to realize, embrace, and move toward His great dream that He has implanted in their hearts.

My primary calling is to proclaim the Word of God, but more and more I am discovering that He has much to say to those who would people businesses that value human resources and call people to a higher level of living.

I wish you God's best and I will see you in church.



  You can actually be a partner with Andy
  in telling his stories by establishing an affiliate relationship with

Andy  Andrews Affiliate Link    Tom's Income Opportunities


Business Principles
Tom's Blogsphere
Thumbing Through Pastor Tom's Bible
Getting Paid Daily

A Little Candy for a Saturday

We dream; we grow;
We move; we flow;
We laugh; we glow.
While here below,
We live in anticipation
Of pomp and circumstance
And graduation.
We are matriculated in the school of life
Articulated by toil and tears and strife.
We are students of all that passes
Work and play, day by day, our classes.
We are classmates with our fellow creatures.
These also are our students and our teachers.
And this is our assignment:
Absolute and total realignment.
And someday through the pain and stress of it.
We will celebrate the gain and success of it.
We dream; we grow and
by God's grace we move and flow
And laugh and glow
While here below,
We live. - Tom Sims

Live well.
Live Long.
Prosper and overcome.
Be all that you can be.
You are more special than you know and it is an honor to be considered among your friends.

Visit my blogs and sites.
Consider my business opportunities and
Accept my support and cheering for your success no matter what path you pursue.
All the Best - Tom



Lessons from a Penny

I just picked up a penny on my desk - mostly due to lack of inspiration in any other area and I asked myself what messages that small coin might give me.

It is round. I am not sure what the significance of that is except that we tend to make our coins round in this country. I could make more of it, but I am focusing on the obvious.

I do need to be more well rounded in my life.

It reminds us that we as a people, for the most part, trust in God - or like to tell people that we do. This, the smallest of coins, calls me to the greatest of faith.

As Kipling said of his nation, puffed up with power:

"If, drunk with sight of power, we loose
   Wild tongues that have not Thee in awe--
Such boasting as the Gentiles use
   Or lesser breeds without the law--
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!"

It tells us that we as a people value liberty.

At the heart of our national love of liberty is a free enterprise system.

How sad, that we are tempted to sacrifice liberty for expediency and safety. Inconvenience for the greater good is expected. To accept long lines for the well being of all is a virtue.  However, we must be vigilant to guard our freedom and remember the words of Patrick Henry, proclaimed in my own hometown of Richmond,

"I know not what course the others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death."

Men and women have been willing to die for it and have died for it. let us never take it lightly.

As you build your own businesses, you are also fighting for freedom.

The penny reminds us of the nobility of character of a man like Abraham Lincoln who failed many times on his road to success, but kept getting up again until he, the most unlikely of candidates came to the place of leadership where he would steer this nation through one of its greatest crises.

Whitman called him, "Oh Captain, my Captain ... fallen cold and dead."

His legacy tells us that greatness can come from humble beginnings and that great trials, both internal  torment and circumstantial  heartache can fashion great people.

And Lincoln on the coin reminds me to never take myself too seriously. He could laugh and make others laugh.

"A Merry Heart Doeth Good Like a Medicine." - Proverbs 15:13

What could be more humble and insignificant than a tiny penny? yet it is intricate and beautiful and pennies accumulate. Some people do not value small things, but have you ever been just a penny short?

"Do not despise the day of small beginnings." (Zechariah 4:10)

Everything magnificent starts off small.

In certain markets, a once cent fluctuation can make a huge difference in the economy.

On the back of the penny is spelled out, "One Cent."  That means it is one part of one hundred cents that add up to a dollar.

Everything is a part of something else. You are a part of something greater than yourself. We are made for community and collaboration. It is American and it is universal.

Every cent counts.  Believe me, they count them at the bank.

If you keep your penny, you will never be broke - not flat broke anyway.

Ben Franklin said, "A penny saved is a penny earned."

The Lincoln Memorial is on the back and I remember the words of a speech I learned as youngster that are inscribed there: The Gettysburg Address. My great grandfather was there at Gettysburg where so many died, that "government of the people, by the people, and for the people" would not perish from the earth.

Out nation was founded, as Lincoln said, "dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal."

It took a civil war to solidify that idea and prepare the way for it to be institutionalized at the next level where slavery simply could not be tolerated.

There is slavery in the world today and we cannot tolerate it.

There are indignities and cruelties perpetrated on men, women, and children made in the image of God. My little penny tells me that I must care and I must do what I can to stop it and help make the world a better place for all humanity.

My great grandfather was fighting on the wrong side of that tragic war, but Lincoln's legacy and the resilience of the American ideal healed the nation and we are one people once more with one currency and one great dream.

Lincoln was prepared to forgive the South and treat her people generously. While those who came to power after his death were not as open handed as him, they did bring the nation together again.

This penny reminds me that there are stronger things than our many differences, that America is greater than her partisan politics, and that we can heal if we focus on what we share in common.

We are diverse and in that diversity is our strength because it forces us to focus on what is truly at the core of our nation's identity.  We unify, not around peripheral concerns, but around core values. The message on the penny brings us back to what the great American experiment in representative government and self-determination was and is all about.

That penny represents opportunity and everyone has an opportunity for success. You can play the game and win.

And we will need some of your pennies for the common good. You know that; April 15 is much to recent.

"E Pluribus Unum,"  it declares, out of many, one.

These are the words from our national seal of which it has been said,

"The center section of their shield has six symbols for "the Countries from which these States have been peopled:" the rose (England), thistle (Scotland), harp (Ireland), fleur-de-lis (France), lion (Holland), and an imperial two-headed eagle (Germany)."

We come from so many backgrounds, cultures, languages, nations, and families. We are also representative of many regions of this country with varying customs, dialects, and histories. Yet, we are one people, one nation under God.

The penny was once made of copper and now of a mixture of metals that mean nothing to me except that I find the penny to be the most beautiful and appealing of coins because of its bronze color.

It is still one cent, no matter what it is made of.

Emblazoned across the top of the second side of the coin, we read, "Untitled States of America."

We are states with powers that are sovereign in their spheres.

We are united so that we surrender some of those powers for the sake of the whole and for the possibility of interstate commerce.

here we are on the Internet because people can do together what no one can do alone.

If you are in a home based business, it is likely that you are in that business "for yourself, but not by yourself."

We are "of America" which means that a guy named Americo Vespucci  did a very good job of creating a map of a new and largely unexplored continent and that our forefathers put aside their fears and apprehensions to come and explore it.

We are still explorers charting new courses and embarking on adventures into the realm of success and significance.

I can look at this penny and know when it was minted - 1978, and where - Denver.

I know where I was in 1978, finishing up my 6th year of college, married since 1975, pastoring two small churches in western Virginia, and still swelling with pride in America in the afterglow of the Bicentennial   celebration of 1976. In fact, cyclists were still stopping at our little church along the  Bicentennial Trail to rest and refresh themselves.

It was a great time in our nation's history.

In 1978, I was preparing to come to California in 1979, but I did not know it at the time. I would move from one coast of this nation to the next and I would need every penny I could find and that God's people would generously bestow upon me to make it.

Here, at the Western edge of our Continent, I have planted my life and ministry and worked on my American Dream alongside my wife of nearly 32 years. We have raised two sons and are helping to raise two wonderful grandsons.

We try to teach them the value of a penny, to earn it honestly, invest it wisely, give it generously, save it judiciously, and spend it frugally. My wife is better at that than me.

I have only been to the airport in Denver, but I know there is a Mint there and my penny came into its present form there and was disbursed from there.

I don't know where it went from there, how many times it has crossed this land, whether or not it has traveled overseas, how many people have lost it and how many have found it.

It has traveled, as have you and your ancestors. Now you are here and the choices you make from this moment forward will determine where you are going.

This penny has been in many pockets, heard many stories, perhaps even been carried into battle. It has used for good and most likely, for evil. It has years of usefulness left as well.

It is faded, so it has not been pampered.

Oh the stories it could tell.

Oh the stories you can tell.

I told you, I had nothing to write about.

It is a good thing someone left a penny on my desk.

If I can get all of that out of the tiniest coin in our economy ... and I could go on much longer, how do you say that you have no story to tell?

You are a person of great experiential wealth and intricately interwoven complexity. You have a fascinating past and a wonderfully mysterious future.

Tell your story; fight for your liberty; be all that you were made to be.

Live well.

All the best to you. - Tom Sims, Pastor, Encourager, Coach, Friends, and Entrepreneur

What an honor to be counted among your MySpace friends.

You are truly a center of influence and I look forward to networking with you. God bless you today and always.

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Pastor Tom's Journal

Just in case you haven't checked, here are some recent entries in Pastor Tom's Journal:

A Concert with Rich Mullins
Awesome God
A Tribute to Billy Graham

And I have in the sidebar, all but three parts of "Homeless Man," A tribute to Rich Mullins. The rest is here: Homeless Man Part 3

Article:  Make Someone's DAY


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Opportunities and Principles

There are so many wonderful opportunities in network and affiliate marketing available today. There are sound business and compensation plans, ethical companies, and excellent products for discerning individuals to sort through and from which for them to choose.

I promote several of them myself and have been involved with many.

With some exceptions, they are credible businesses which a highly motivated person who is willing to learn the necessary skills can use as a platform for building wealth, security, and freedom. However, no one can do them all and jumping from business to business in search of one magic outlet could be a sign that a person is not learning the necessary lessons of success.

With very few exceptions, these businesses are built on common principles that can be applied to any endeavor. They are also predicated upon attitudes that breed success. In addition, in order for that success to be truly rewarding and fulfilling, it must be more than financial and business success. It must touch something deeper inside of us and develops character.

The principles of people-building businesses are sound because they are spiritual, biblical, and intrinsic. They are profoundly meaningful because, at their core, is the spirit of giving. They elevate the centrality of good relationships and they often point to a relationship with God as the central relationship that every human needs and longs for.

My interest lies in teaching and applying these principles that are described as a TUNE we learn to sing:

T - Transferable principles
- Most people try 3 multi-level companies before they settle on the one at which they are successful. Are the first two a waste of time? In no way. They are schools of principles where a person can learn while they earn (or not earn). Nothing is wasted for the one who is committed to learning and applying principles. Each business has its own learning curve, but no business completely reinvents the wheel. Thank god for those who have laid the foundation. Now build on it.

U - Universal principles
- Network marketing principles are not only transferable, but they are universal in the sense that they are cross-cultural and apply to other disciplines than  network marketing or traditional business. The best lessons of network marketing are about life, relationships, personal development, people skills, becoming a life long learner, ethics, and character. These are universal. They are necessary for 40 hour a week jobs, for ministry, and family life. Even if you never make a dime in your home-based business, take advantage of the training, the books, the audio-visual materials, and the mentoring - for life!

N - Necessary prerequisites
- Every network marketing business has its own uniqueness and learning curve. There are prerequisites for each. One is a humble attitude that is teachable and willing to learn. There is a difference between the two. The first is largely passive and the second is proactive and both are necessary. The necessary prerequisites for choosing the right business are both subjective and objective.

  1. Can you get enthusiastic about the core product? If you are told that the product isn't important, consider that a credibility red-flag.
  2. Do you like the sponsor and his/her sponsor (your support team)? Can you related to each other? Can you learn from someone in that organization? Do they have a good training system?
  3. Is the system clear and duplicative? Can you understand it and communicate it to others and train them to communicate it?
  4. Does the company have a good track record and credibility? What is its reputation? Check it out. Even if it is new, the founders will have some sort of track record you can check on.
  5. Can you "do" the marketing plan? Does it work with your hard-wiring or can you train yourself to make it work for you?
  6. Are there models of success that you can look up to?
  7. Are your sponsors accessible and ready to help you build your business?
  8. How is the online support? Is that important to you?
  9. Who are the people to whom your business/product will appeal? Can you relate to them?

E - Enduring truth - These principles will not change even though specific strategies and methodologies will. Learn them by applying them and soar.

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Evening and Morning

Make a Friend Tomorrow

Before you go to sleep tonight, you will most likely review your plans and appointments for tomorrow. Perhaps you will mentally prepare for them or pray about them. You will think about what you will wear based upon your tasks and appointments, what time you will need to get up, perhaps even, what you will have for breakfast.

May I suggest an assignment for tomorrow?

Make a friend.

Go out of your way to meet someone you do not know and establish a relationship. Do it without ulterior motives or a sense of "prospecting." Do it with an open mind and heart. Do it for no other reason than the knowledge that this could be a significant and mutually beneficial relationship.

Make it a goal and a commitment. Otherwise, it most likely will not happen.

Get excited about it.

You may be about to meet the person who will come into your inner circle of social or business relationships. You may meet the person who needs exactly the kind of friendship you offer or whose insights will take you to the next level of achievement.

You will meet a person of infinite value, wonder, and potential.

You are about the meet someone made in the image of the Creator, someone that God has arranged for you to meet.

All it takes is your willingness and resolve.

Decide to make a friend tomorrow.

Big Day

God has a very big day in store for you tomorrow.
You will conquer fear, despair, and sorrow.
You will rise to heights you've never known.
You will sigh and laugh, and sing and grown.
You will live and celebrate your inspired humanity.
You will rise above the dull, monotony of senseless insanity
To soar, to roar with the voice of the lion, to score.
The door is before you, the voice of God whispers, "There is more!"
Tomorrow is your's to face and embrace with wonder.
It is for your voice to shout the victory, to thunder,
"I am here and I have come to conquer this day!
There is no fear that can sway me or turn me from this way!
I am a soldier or love, a warrior of peace, a child of God.
My strength is from above. My joy shall not cease. I stand on the sod
Of a new day ... tomorrow.


Tomorrow at 7:15 AM is my Toastmaster's meeting - specifically, Fresno's Federal Toastmaster's club which meets at Denny's, between Abby and Blackstone at Divisadero (for those of you in Fresno).

Toastmaster's is the finest educational program for overcoming American's greatest fear that I know. Many people would rather have a root canal than speak in public.

That reminds me, I need to schedule a root canal - but I would rather speak!

In an atmosphere of corporate helpfulness and mutual support, [people start where they are and learn to become more effective communicators and leaders.

When that happens, it pays them - real money - because they can accept assignments they may have shunned for fear and express their ideas with confidence.

You may not have a Toastmaster's club nearby - but you likely do. Whether you do or not, I would encourage you to consider that public speaking is a skill that you would do well to develop on your highway to success.

Evening Prayer

Lord of the universe, Master of creation, Dreamer of all that is, and King of my life.
My Father in Heaven.
Our Father.
I come to the close of another day.
I am weary and spent.
I know that tomorrow holds countless opportunities to touch and be touched and to produce fruit for Your Kingdom of Grace, and that the rest I am about to get is necessary to prepare me.
I am restless as dreamers often are. Yet, it is Your dream that is alive in my heart whether I am sleeping or waking. Conform what is in my heart to Your glorious dream for all that is. May I desire what You desire.
Fashion me in my sleep.
I fancy myself a master who must manipulate the circumstances and control the variables. Yet, I am but as link or a cog or whatever You need me to be in the moment as part of Your master design. I can rest well, knowing that You are in charge and that You will be awake all night tending to the laws of the cosmos and the people You love.
I cannot love them any more than You already do and I entrust them to You.
You are Lord of the universe and Master of my life.
My hope is in You.
My faith and my trust are in You and Your care.
I can rest now.
There is nothing to keep me from slumber.
I place my body, my mind, my spirit, all that is me and all that is mine in Your gracious loving hands and ask that You awaken me in the morning, whether I awaken here or in Your presence and That I might be found useful to You.
In Jesus' Name,

One more thing ...

I went to a graduation today and I realized one thing about myself.

I cry at graduations ...

... especially during Pomp and Circumstance.

I am 52 years old and I am too old to be embarrassed by that. I know what a struggle it was for some of those kids and parents and I am proud of them.

It's their party and I'll cry if I want to.

I may reflect more on that later.

- Tom out  ... and I think I mean it this time.

Vanishing Leadership

It is one of the tasks of a great leader to vanish.

There are many leadership skills involving our hands: the hand up, the extended hand, the hands on demonstration,  the hand on the shoulder and the hand off.

That's right, the hand off with its accompanying attitude of "hands off." It is also called, "the hand over."

In business and ministry, we will find ourselves endlessly serving one task, one location, and one small group of people if we are unable, unwilling, or uninspired to duplicate ourselves and vanish into the woodwork.

Vanishing leadership is real leadership. It mentors, prepares, and duplicates itself in others with the specific goal of giving away a role or task and all the credit and accolades that go with it.

Great leaders are always grooming successors.

By the way, into the woodwork does not mean unavailable for counsel, accountability, and encouragement. It just means that the leader is generous and intelligent enough to know that his or her effectiveness is either severely limited or profoundly enhanced by the willingness and ability to duplicate and vanish.

To develop this idea, let us examine the concepts of "Hands On" and "Hands Off" to ascertain when each is most appropriate in leadership.


We need to keep out hands on a task while we are training new leadership. The extent to which we keep our hands on will be informed by the following factors:

  • H - Help is needed in learning skills, concepts, internalizing the mission, and getting the job done at a minimal level.
  • A - Assimilation of the philosophy and values of the organization are still in formation.
  • N - Negative attitudes, behaviors, and conversational patterns are being "unlearned."
  • D - Dependence on the mentor/coach is constant.

  • O - Optimum performance comes with close supervision.
  • N - Necessity dictates that the tasks be closely monitored for quality assurance.


  • H - Help is still needed, but it can be offered more often from a distance and  at broader intervals.
  • A - Assimilation of philosophy and values is beginning to take hold. The work has moved from head to heart.
  • N - Negative factors are less pronounced, easily recognized, and managed.
  • D - Delegation  of entire projects is taking place.

  • O - Optimum performance is enhanced by trust and disengagement.
  • F - Formation of a sense of ownership by the new leaders in the organization, its reputation, its future, and its excellence is becoming evident.
  • F - Formal recognition of the new leader's leadership abilities and skills has instilled a sense of confidence and accountability.

Each of these requires further explanation and development, but you can get the point. The transference of leadership may be gradual, but it must also be a constant commitment if an organization, ministry, or business is to grow in number and influence.

Good Wishes

I will write later if I can, but I want to get something out so here it is:

I wish for you all a day filled with extraordinary, audacious, and joyful success.

May it be extraordinary because we were never called to be merely ordinary. We were called, fashioned,ad equipped to do the one job no one else in the world can do: be ourselves under God in a world that needs the uniqueness we have to offer.

May it be audacious because audacity is that which is invulnerable to fear or intimidation. May nothing intimidate you on your path to greatness today. Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. May your critics on the highway to mediocrity simply confirm in your heart that you are going the opposite and right way.

May it be joyful because joy is the culmination of a life of grace, gratitude, and generosity. If you can discover the secret of abiding an d overflowing joy in the midst of all circumstances, you will be a success indeed.

All the best to you today and always.

Your encourager, coach, pastor, and friend,

- Tom Sims

Feeding and Starving

Feed your dreams; starve your fears.
Whichever one you feed will grow.

Fears will grow to control you and clip your wings.

Dreams will consume you and cause you to soar.

It is your choice.

You will feed that to which you give the most attention and credit.

If you live by fear, you will live a crippled and limited life. Your best work, your highest aspirations, and your most enchanting creations will go to the grave with you.

If you live as a person of vision, you may not attain all of your goals, but you will attain many and they will live on after you are gone. They will inspire others to dream and create. You will create a ripple that will grow into a mighty tidal wave of dreams and accomplishments.

Feed your dreams and starve your fears. That is my recommendation and below are some ideas for how to feed dreams and starve fears.

FEED Your Dreams

F = Face them. I mean, put a face on them. Find something that represents them that you can gaze upon and be reminded of them.

E = Enliven them. Create activities that remind you of your dreams, move you closer toward them, and let you experience "foretastes" of what it will be like when they come true.

E - Elicit support. Ask people who are positive dreamers to be part of your dream building community. Build them up even as they build you up. Get folks on your team. Someone said that if you ever see a turtle at the top of a telephone pole and he tells you he got there by himself he is either lying or he doesn't understand the nature of things.

D - Determine to pursue them, work for them, and never let them go. Determination will take you from today until tomorrow. It is essential.

STARVE Your Fears

S = Saturate yourself with positive words, thoughts, and deeds. Give negativity no quarter. Make no room for it. Your prior decision to go for the dream has shut out all possibility of fear finding a resting place in your life. You are just too occupied with where you are going.

T - Time them. Go ahead and nod at your fears. Stare them down. Look at them for 30 seconds, a minute, whatever it takes to understand them. When the time is up, say,  "Time's up. That's all I can give you." Then walk away. If there was something valid about the fear, you took time to see it and make provisions. The rest is fruitless.

A - Attack your challenges as one who has the upper hand. Be the aggressor with your fears. Be proactive. Get fear on the run by taking charge of the situations that feed it.

R - Rest in God's promises. He has not given us the spirit of fear. He alone is worthy of our reverence and fear (awe). Reverence Him and let Him take care of all the other fears.

V - Value what is valuable. Your dreams are built upon principles you value. Your fears are largely irrational and based upon a concern that you will be severed from something temporal and fleeting. Focus on what endures and has infinite value. It will starve fear because it will take away all of its "junk food" nourishment.

E = Eliminate that which makes you fearful. I don't know what it is in your life, but there is something that feeds your fears. Identify it and eliminate it.


That is your assignment today!

Doing What Needs to Be Done

Eating Crow

No one likes to "eat crow," grovel, or admit that they were wrong enough to get into a predicament from which they need help extricating themselves. It sears one's pride and devastates one's self-esteem and the quicker we get it done, the better.

Sometimes the choice is between swallowing one's pride and going broke.

Swallowing pride is uncomfortable. Being broke is much worse.

The teacher in Proverbs 6:1-5 hits the nail on the head:

" My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger,  Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth. Do this now, my son, and deliver thyself, when thou art come into the hand of thy friend; go, humble thyself, and make sure thy friend. Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids. Deliver thyself as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler."

Here is the scenario. The son has made promises he can't keep, albeit in good faith, by cosigning on someone else's loan. That person might have been a friend he trusted or a stranger who "took him in." either way, he is now seeing the error of his ways and the danger signs ahead.

Solomon wisely counsels him, "Grovel!"

Go now and eat crow. Do it fast; do it with all your energy. GET OUT OF THAT DEAL!

No one wants to hear this. Part of us would rather go under than bow down. We would rather bluff our way through life than humble ourselves and do what is best for ourselves and what is right by God and man.

Pride will hurt you, my friend. It will hurt you in the wallet and it will hurt you in the heart.

This is a practical reminder from the Proverbs that we are not always right and when we are wrong, the most prudent thing to do is admit it and repair the damage as quickly as possible.

Would you rather be right or rich?

How to get Ahead

Ants have always been a source of fascination for me. Their collective intelligence and capacity for production is amazing. I used to tread water on the deep end of our swimming pool and observe them move in and out from  the cracks  with a precision and organization that could not be explained by the presence of a "queen" buried in there somewhere.

Essentially, their work is unsupervised, without instructions, and self-motivated by something intrinsic to their nature.

They get it done and they get far enough ahead to be self-sufficient as a community.

You never see a frustrated or worried ant.

In fact, if you divert him from his immediate mission, he seems to carry on his larger mission by simply finding another task and doing it.

There is so much to learn from ants. thus, Solomon said in Proverbs 6:2-8:

"Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. "

This teaching is placed in the Proverbs as a counter to laziness. If industry and self-starting are keys to getting ahead, laziness is an expressway to getting behind.

Solomon  writes to the sluggard with the hope that, by observing someone getting it done, he will get with it himself and  be motivated.

It is easy to self-motivate when we see the results stacking up minute-by-minute, hourly, or even daily. it can be tougher if it takes longer to see progress. in that case, we must learn to visualize it and measure it differently.

However we inform our psyches of the benefits of steady, hard, conscientious work, be assured of this, it is worth the effort.

If you want to get ahead, you must work at it and you must motivate yourself to do so.

How to Get Behind

If there is a sure-fire expressway to getting ahead, there is a steep slide to getting behind. Just do nothing. Stay in bed. Roll over for another hour. Be late for work. Miss appointments. Be unreliable. Do sloppy work. Complain a lot. Grumble when you are assigned a task. Move slowly. Frown. Just be lazy.

Solomon understood this and spoke of it in Proverbs 6:9-11:

"How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep? Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man."

Why does he call it a little sleep and a little slumber? Because that is what we call it when we rest excessively. Everyone needs sleep. God designed us so that we require down time. However, the sluggard wants a little more and a little more and a little more.

He never gets caught up.

He is extremely successful at failure and, while he may feel or confess to be miserable, he is unwilling to do anything to change that state.

It takes effort to get out of bed. It takes an inner drive and a shock to the system to wake up and do what needs to be done. it may even be painful for you.

What you have to ask yourself is, "What is the greater pain, getting up or being broke?"

It is really all up to you.

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Tips for Fine Tuning Attitudes - AN

Sometimes I need AN attitude adjustment. I just need to flip the switch from channel zero to channel one and start living on a higher level of thinking. It is possible, but there are some obstacles. It is then that I harness the power of one of many AN remedies:

1. The Complaint CAN - If I keep an actual or symbolic can available, with a lid, I can jot down every complaint that comes to mind and put  it in the can. I CAN it.

2. The Trying PAN - You can have your frying pan for cooking up this and that concoction. I am going to use my Trying PAN for cooking up new ideas and launching new recipes for living. Instead of saying I cAN't, I give it a shot. If it flops it doesn't make me a flop; it makes me an adventurer. Eventually, I will find what works.

3. The Son TAN - Sometimes I just need to bask in the glory of God's Son and fellowship with Him. I have noticed that there are times I catch myself with a raunchy attitude and, with a little spiritual inventory, discover that I have not been still enough to know that God is God. I have been rushing through the most important time in my life, that quiet reflective tANning solon called personal devotions.

4. The Blessing FAN - Often my attitude suffers from exhaust. I have the fan inverted and am trying to suck up all the blessings for myself. Then I am reminded that if I broadcast them to others in all directions, the right ones will come back to me. I need to FAN out the blessings.

5. The Thinking PlAN - One of the problems we all encounter is that we don't plan enough time to think things through or we think about the wrong things or we just don't bother to think the right thoughts. Everyone has a certain amount of control over the subject, content, and intensity of his or her thinking. Philippians 4:8-9 gives us topic headings for constructive thinking. Take one a day for the next week and plAN to focus and think on that quality.

6. The Negative BAN - We just need to bAN negativity from our lives. Refuse to entertain the negative. Shun gossip. Ignore disparaging words. Govern our own words.

7. The God MAN - At the center of our quest for a positive attitude is a helper, forerunner, and example, Jesus Christ, of whom the apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 1:5 to have the same attitude in us that was in Him. He is the key. He is the prototype. He is the one who transforms our thinking.

There is not a single human being who does not need periodic attitude adjustments, tunings, and reminders. A little tuning can make a big difference in our businesses, ministries, and relationships. Use AN as a guide if you like and get back to me with the results.

Listen Before You Speak

Attention is costly. Otherwise, we would not have to pay it. Like any sound investment, paying attention pays well.

The teacher in Proverbs 5:1 says that by listening well to his words of insight, we can maintain discretion and preserve words of knowledge with our lips.

The path to good speaking is from the ears to the head, through the heart, and out the mouth. Most of us listen some, at least peripherally. We listen selectively. We listen with bias, thinking we know what to listen for and extracting tidbits to bolster our own arguments and pitches.. consequently, we lose both discretion and knowledge. What proceeds from our lips is not nearly as instructive, edifying, and truthful as it could be.

Solomon admonishes us to listen well. To pay attention this way costs us time and energy. The cost is in the spelling of WELL:

W - Listen with WONDER - That is jaw dropping, gaping, eyes-wide-open awe and inquisitiveness. we come to the school of life and sit at the feet of our elders expecting to learn, awed by our own lack of knowledge and the vastness of what can be known in the larger presence of what cannot be known. Without wonder and reverence for the unknowns, we have nothing to say.

E - Listen with ENGAGEMENT - That is exemplified in the picture of a student on the edge of his or her seat, staring at the teacher, glancing down at the paper, feverishly taking notes, asking questions, making mental application, and processing the new found knowledge outside of class. Engagement increases the volume of learning exponentially.

L - Listen with LAUGHTER -  I do not mean frivolity, sarcasm, or contempt. I mean with a sense of fun  and enjoyment. Let joy fill your learning. The ancient Hebrews spoke of the law as a thing of great joy and celebration. "To think," they must have thought and said, "that someone in Heaven, the Creator of all things, cares enough for us to give us such practical instructions on how to live in peace, harmony, and justice." Learn with laughter and learn to laugh at yourself when you see yourself in the bad examples. Things will get better.

L - Listen with a LOVE of learning. Cherish the opportunity, every opportunity to listen to the wisdom and insight of others. Ask deep questions and linger long over the words being shared with you. Allow them to go from your head to your heart. Soon they will proceed from your lips and you too, will be a preserver of knowledge.

It will cost you something to listen well, but you can afford it. it pays well.

Living for Others

Proverbs 4:2 - I give you sound learning,
       so do not forsake my teaching.

Consider what is not written here. The book of Proverbs is full of helpful instructions on living a successful life, but someone took the time to write these wise sayings as a father to the son. In giving sound teaching, that person, Solomon, along with others, was giving his life, his wisdom, and his time away to impart the gifts of significance and success to another.

In  so doing, we have, at our disposal and within reach, a storehouse of wisdom that we can never exhaust.

It is the unwritten principle of Proverbs, that as we live for God, we also live for others. The best gift we can give ourselves is to give ourselves away.

Giving Yourself Away

Thanks for being a friend and for building people.

What we invest in the lives of others returns to us in abundance.

We make daily choices to give of ourselves in ways that are uniquely our own or to squander our influence on selfish and fruitless pursuits.

We when give, we receive. It is an divine and eternal principle.

You have chosen to reach out to others and in doing so, you will be blessed.

I am cheering for your success. Let me know if I can help in any way that in uniquely mine to give. I offer coaching, inspiration, business opportunities suited to your own uniqueness, and a listening ear. The ear part is complimentary and the businesses are a partnership.

Whatever you do, it is an honor to network with you. Keep up the good work and visit my blog when you can.

Make a Living or Make a Difference

We choose how we will spend our time. It is a commodity that is not renewable, but with proper stewardship, it can be maximized.

It is ironic, but true, that our decisions about expenditures of time will determine the quality of that time and the effectiveness of our lives. We can give our time in service and reap rich rewards. We can hoard our time and lose it forever.

We can live every moment or bide the hours and days until some moment of good fortune. We can embrace our daily work with joy and a desire to be productive or we can put in our time and just make a living.

We can choose to make a living or make a difference.

When we choose to make a difference, we tiptoe in expectancy, skip with anticipation, and dance with joy through every moment of our days, knowing that we have once chance to pass through that moment and leave the world positively different because of our presence.

If you are "trapped" in a job, liberate yourself by making it your mission of the moment and your launch pad to greater things. Use your time before and after work to create options, but your time at work to bloom where you are planted and make a difference in the world.

You are unique and wonderful. There is only one like you. Only you can accomplish what you have been placed here to do. only you can be what you are called to be.

I am cheering for you. How can I help?

"Who Can I Lift Today?"  - A prayer by Tom Sims
Who can I lift today
From dregs or rags or rubble?
"Who will lift me?" replies the bit of me within me
Whose focus, inverted and cross eyed causes me to
Stumble over unexpected opportunities.
"Refocus!" Shouts the me within me that can see,
Refocus and move forward and ask again the first question.
Who can I lift today and in the lifting, lift myself.
Who can I encourage?
Who can I bless?
Who can I walk alongside and with that one,
Share a burden?
Who can I love?
To whom can I give myself?
Who will be my brother or sister,
Or lifelong friend,
Whom I have never met?
Who will you bring along my path today, Oh Lord,
By divine appointment to change my life
As I give give myself away?
I stand before you on tiptoe, Oh Lord,
With childlike anticipation and wonder,
Waiting for the moment and the person
That you will bring along my way
To lift today. - Tom Sims

Keep On In Hope

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." - Romans 15:13 (New International Version - NIV - Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society )

God is, among so many other things, the God of hope. He tends to reveal Himself by various descriptive names in order to meet us where we are at our point of challenge.

When you feel like quitting, it is often when you are also feeling most hopeless. There is a remedy. In this short simple verse, Paul describes a Daily Double, a Daily Duty, and a Dependable Dynamic.

The reality that He is, for us, the God of hope cannot help but encourage us if we believe and receive the hope He gives. He comes to us with a Daily Double - two qualities come to us in abundance when we embrace His hope: joy and peace.

There is no joy for a hopeless person. There is no reason to arise in the morning. Their is no bounce in his step, no light in his eyes, and no lift in his voice. His heart is heavy because he sees a dark, dim, dreary road ahead for years to come.

He is not hopeless; he just thinks he is because he does not yet know the God of hope.

There is hope for your future, hope for your family, hope for your business, hope for your ministry because there is a God of hope who has never relinquished His position as Lord of the universe. He is not the universe; He is its designer and master. He governs the principles that govern us and He is decreed that where He is, there is hope!

He is the grand deal-breaker when circumstances add up against you. Hopelessness does not stand a chance. If there is a vacuum  in your life where there ought to be joy, trust God.

In today's Proverbs, chapter 3, verse 5-6, we are admonished, "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not on thine own understanding. In all thy ways, acknowledge Him, and He shall bring it to pass."

Jump for joy! Do it on faith. You are about to be filled to overflowing with giddy, grateful joy!

My friend Mahilda just couldn't get it. She scowled and moped all through the day. "I just don't feel any hope," she would complain to any who would listen. Like Paul, her friends started praying that the God of hope would fill her with joy and peace. One day, while reading the Bible, she found this verse, "The God of hope ..."

"If God is the God of hope, and He is present in my life, then I have hope," she thought. And I don't have to feel hopeful to be hopeful. I just have to believe in God. OK! I can do that!"

It made the difference and there was a new bounce, smile, and exuberance in her life and she started to discover opportunities that she had been missing and would have continued to miss. Not only that, her positive attitude made her attractive to people that came into her life and shared her joy, creating a joyful synergy that multiplied.

The second quality that comes to us in abundance when we know the God of hope and He fills our lives with Himself, is peace. Peace is not merely the absence of conflict. Nor is it the cessation of war. Peace is bigger than that; it is the wholeness and well being of a governed life. For the Christian, it is the life governed by God through Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit.

There is no peace for the hopeless.

There is worry, frustration, distraction, despair, discouragement, and bitterness. When there is no wholeness within, there are factions and frictions that develop. There are broken relationships, broken dreams, and broken hearts. The ungoverned heart is never at peace; the hopeless heart keeps its host awake at night in a constant, thought sometimes low level of anxiety and concern.

But the God of hope fills us with peace. We must know Him and trust Him and release our cares into His care.

When He governs us, He speaks to our hearts as Jesus spoke to the stormy waters, "Peace, be still."

There is Daily Duty - a qualification to receiving these qualities within ourselves. we must trust. It is as we trust in Him, and specifically, in Him as the God of hope, that we are filled.

When we are filled, we receive  the inner resources of joy and peace to resist the urge to quit. We keep on because of something inside us. Paul teaches us that the way we internalize these qualities is by the power of the Holy Spirit, God Himself entering into our hearts and lives as we trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

He comes in power and, as Jesus said, as one who walks alongside of us. In us and with us - what a combination!

Like Mahilda, we must learn to take His presence and hopefulness as a matter of faith and begin to act on it.

Trusting God is a daily duty that brings the richest of rewards to our lives.

Finally, there is a Dependable Dynamic that makes it happen, the power of the Holy Spirit. We have already spoken of Him, but this is major.

We can do all the right things all the time, but if there is no power that enforces the spiritual laws and graces that we affirm, there is no hope. We are promised that we will overflow, into other  people's lives and all around, with boundless, bountiful, audacious hope and that the river flowing through us will never run dry.

How does that happen? It happens through the power of the living, ever present, all powerful, presence of God through His Holy Spirit. In Him, we have plugged into the endless source and we never have to economize when we tap into Him.

It takes submission, sincerity, and celebration to fully realize what it means to be filled with Him, but we have a lifetime to learn and now to begin.

Jesus said two things about the coming of the Holy Spirit. One was that in the Spirit, He would not leave us comfortless, but that he would come to us. The second was that because He went to the Father and would send His Spirit, we would do even greater works than He did among us.

If that is not a cause for hope, nothing is - and He is the God of hope. And He sends His Dependable Dynamic, from Himself, to fill us and govern our hearts, setting them free from all despair, defeat, and worry to become great and mighty forces for His good in the world.

You have a bright future because you have God of hope! Don't quit; Keep On!

Links to Some Past Articles

As of today and this hour, I have posted 328 articles on this blog. Here are some highlights since September 2006:

Hand-Holding in Ministry 

Coffee and Honey

Remember the Life-Saving Station

Tools, Drools, and Fools 

Take Some Steps of FAITH

Seven "E" for a Christ-Centered Community

Going RADical 

FAST Thinking 

Taming the The Rhinoceros

What Does It Take to Get Good Contacts?   , 

Temporal Complexity  ,   

Scandals and Sandals   , 

Goodwill  ,   

What Are You Selling?  , 

How to Be Rigidly Flexible About Time   ,   

The Hands of Time  , 

What About Now? ,   

Long Dash   , 

Writing Your Own Ticket  , 

Humility and Confidence   , 

Decisions   ,   

These Are the Days  , 

Setting the Table   ,

Notes and Ideas  ,

Seven Tenths of a Pound  ,   

My New Hero   , 

People Meeting People  , 

Loving People  ,   

Spring Time in Fresno   ,

Losing Heart Is Not an Option   ,

God, the Entrepreneur  , 

Suze Orman on Self Employment

From "The Shoestring Conspiracy(Shoestrings Are Cheap"   ,

New Friends  ,

Fair Shakes and Residuals   ,

Triple Threat   ,   

Yes, the Sky Is Falling & It's OK  ,   

A Little Comic Relief for a Saturday   , 

Locals of Note  ,   

Bob Burg on Winning Without Intimidation   ,

Good Word for a Project Guy   ,   

Wendy Says You Need a PHD!   ,   

"Direct Selling Success in 2007" from"Direct Selling News"   , 

Gerald May 1940-2005  , 

Another quote from Gerald May   , 

Free Lunches and Networking  ,   

Sitting Here  ,    

The Entrepreneurial URGE   ,   

The Holiness of the Ordinary    , 

This Is Not Brain Surgery ... but It Makes Sense   ,   

Working Pastors   ,   

Time and Transformation  ,    

Lyn Perry and Thought Renewal    , 

Keep Your Widgets Polished    , 

Spelling SALES

H.B. London Has Been in My Mail    ,   

Thoughts on The Fellowship of Joy   , 

Sliding Between Parallel Dimensions  , 

Thinking Aloud (Allowed)   ,   

Honor and Horrows  ,

Anna Nicole  , 

Anne Lamott    , 

Entrepreneurial Education ,    

Zipper Down on the Highway to WELATH  ,

Motives   ,   

Proverbs 13 for Work, Wealth and Business   , 

Hi! A. Tuss   , 

Virgnina Tech in the News and In Our Prayers  ,   

Proverbs 12 for Work, Wealth, and Business  ,

More Proverbs on Money and Wealth

Wealth Words from Proverbs 10   ,   

Should You Consider Network Marketing?   ,   

Something  , 

Learning Curves Are for Exercise  ,   

From Fire to Abundance  ,   

Bullet Biting Behaviors ,   

Risk  ,   


Thoughts on Leadership   ,   

How Big?   ,   

Smile  , 

Becoming REAL ,    

What Counts? ,   \

Do SOMETHING! - Today's Proverb for Work and Wealth    

Money - Troubles or Treasures 

A Proverb for Anything 

Spelling M-O-N-E-Y Biblically      

How to Make Someone's Day! 

How To Make Someone's D-A-Y Part Two - Spell It!

The Power of Stories 

 Most Recent Rant on Fresno Famous 

Sliding Between Parallel Dimensions

More recent Entries

Let's Get to Church 

IVA - A Sweet and Real Lady

Musings - But Not Necessarily Amusing   

Differences and Commonalities   


Flip the Greatness Switch,   

The FLOW of Grace  ,   

Nor the Memorial of Them Perish  ,   

Pentecost  ,   

Social Networks - Are they a FAD?

Take Charge and Win    

A Benediction 

The Towel Step

Blog Updates from March

Excerpts from Elsewhere in Tom's Cyber Realm

My Series on "The Secret"  - A Christian Perspective with care not to throw the baby out with the bath water):

The Secret    The Real Secret     The Open Secret               


Blog Archives Prior to September 2006

Pastor Tom's Journal       

The occasional journal of a pastor-writer-motivator observing the wonders and absurdities of life and celebrating the opportunities that abound every day.

        And the most recent until I write another entry today:
             For Those Who Take Life Too Seriously

Pastor Tom's Look at Luke

Pastor Tom's Comments on Proverbs 

Pastor Tom's Roman Road

Adventures in Polecat Hollow

Entrepreneur's Table

The Shoestring Conspiracy

Pastor Tom's Garden of Sermon Seeds & Sprouts

VAST Possibilities

Transformational Communities

The Clogger Blogger

Stream of Consciousness

Pastor Tom’s Community


A little effort is like eating a potato chip. Once you start, the next one just seems natural and then the next and the next and the next. The difference is that the potato chip saps you and leads to lethargy and obesity while effort energizes and brings rewards.

You don't fill your plate with a huge helping of effort and force yourself to consume it all in one sitting. You graze on it. you take small bites and baby steps. If a little is all you have to give today, you pat yourself on the back and rest with the fulfilling knowledge that you have done something toward your goals.

But small efforts lead to large surges of energy and productivity.

Yet, they are simply made up of multiple little efforts.

We are not big block people. Most of us can only carry small loads, but we can keep coming back for more,. Soon the work load begins to organize itself and we start to see results. The results, even small results, give us such a lift that we can keep going.

For five years in a row, our church built houses in Mexico one week every summer. When we would arrive on the site, the task would always seem daunting. The first day always involved mixing cement by hand and laying a foundation. It was seemingly endless, tiring, back breaking work, but we could complete it in one day and one wheel barrel at a time.

We went home late on those Mondays and slept well in our tents after a well-earned dinner.

The next morning we would return to the worksite and were immediately invigorated by the sight of a hard, smooth, finished foundation.

Laying the foundation is always the hard part and every bite of effort is worth it. Give the effort, even in small segments, and reap great rewards.

Here is an acronym for effort:

Energy - Effort is spending energy - little or much. You decide, but there is always something to spend.

Faith - The word comes from the Greek, "pistis," from which we get, "pistol." faith launches us in much the same way a pistol launches a bullet.

Fulfillment - Well spent energy has its own sens eof fulfillment built in. the rerward is present in the deed.

Optimize - It pays to be wise and to spend energy and effort where it is most useful. However, we should not use this as an excuse for delay. Efficiency will reveal itself in the course of doing the deeds.

Reward - There will be rewards for effort. Some are immediate and  most are eventual.

Time - The results of effort are cumulative over time and they are like a geometric progression branching out in all directions beyond our control.

Put out some effort today and expect some results.

Tom's Income Opportunities
Business Principles
Tom's Blogsphere
Thumbing Through Pastor Tom's Bible

Getting Paid Daily

Wit, Wisdom, and Silliness Inspired by Answer Bag


 It is a choice. I choose to be inspired by them because I have opportunities to do as well if I embrace them. Lazy people choose to be jealous. People who are afraid to take risks hate those who do. The remedy is personal change. Circumstances may not change, but people can. If someone feels bitter toward successful people, he/she should get over it and focus, instead, on his/her own movement toward success, however they define it. Another person's success cannot limit me, but it can motivate me.

My response to, “OK at 17, (still am) i was convicted of felony; Possession of Cocaine and now I’m worried about my future with that felony there. Do you think ill be able to get a decent job?”

 Are you done with that nonsense?

If not, you should be very worried.

If you are, you can have a very bright future.

My answer to “Do you believe that music now is as important as it has been in the past?”

Absolutely. Music exists in eternity and is always vital to who we are. It is interwoven into the fabric of the universe through pulses and subdivisions, frequencies, and rhythms. If no human ever sub-created music, it would exist all around us. Music simply is and always will be.

My reflections on the question, “What does ABC stands for? “

Always Be Courteous.
Always Be Cool.
Act By Consensus.
A Big Crooner
A Boisterous Coward
After Bowling Conference  

Actually Being Crafty

and one more, because it is tiring <g> ...

Affectively Botched Configuration
(ie ... You attitude is out of wack.)

My answer to this question: “Would you say you "give as good as you get" or do you let most things slide by without feeling a need to defend or attack?”

 If I "give and I get," then I am surrendering control of my life to someone else's behaviors and choices. I am letting the other person run my life and emotions.

If I must defend myself at all times, then I am saying that what someone else thinks of me or says about me changes who I am or determines how I feel about myself.

Frank Sinatra said that the best revenge is success.

Build your life as if your critics do not exist. Become a beacon of truth for them. Show them that you are stronger than their attacks by having a good day in spite of anything they say or do. That is my philosophy.

Am I always successful at it?

Mostly -- not always. I am a work in progress.

However, when I don't practice it, thing don't go as well as when I do.

I would much rather be proactive in my life than reactive. The Golden Rule is as much for us as it is for "them."

 My answer to an 18 year old who wonders if he is too young to have the credibility to sell real estate and how much he can expect to make in the first year:

Make what you can, but stick with it for the long haul. Don't let anyone limit you or tell you what you cannot do because you are young. Turn your disadvantages into advantages. Listen to mentors. Surround yourself with experienced people. Read about people skills, personal development, sales, and real estate for at least 30 minutes every day. Turn off your radio in the car and listen to motivational and educational audios whenever you are driving. Drink coffee or have lunch or breakfast with a postive

YOU CAN DO IT!!! person at least once a day. Keep lists of goals. Count every "no" as a step toward "yes."

 My answer to what happened to all the missing socks:

he Twilight Zone

There they formed a coalition of mix-matched socks and were animated by a race of invisible shape-shifters. The symbiotic partnership is a thriving example of how entities can work together to form the formless and inform the clueless.

That is my current theory, but it is in flux.

We were asked how to tell a relative that her house was a disaster. I answered:

First you get an asbestos suit and cover it with armor.

Then you psyche yourself up into a really audacious and meddlesome mood.

Then you look up some really cool insults about dirty houses on the Internet.

Next, practice them in the mirror.

Then, forget it. You cannot do it without hurting her feelings or imposing your will on her. I know you mean well, but it may not be taken well.

If you feel she is overwhelmed and asking for help, you can suggest that if she ever needs help with anything around the house, that she should feel free to ask you.

Then wait to be asked.

Now, you know your relationship with your relative better than I do and if you feel she would appreciate your input, and then give it. However, I suspect that if you already felt permission from her to advise her, you would have already done so. <smile>.

Asked if we used our university degree every day, I answered:

 I don't really use my degree every day, but my education is a part of me and I use it constantly.

Do you feel that you are currently living the life you are supposed to be living and that you are doing exactly what you're supposed to be doing or are you still searching?

This was a good question. I answered: Exactly? No. Approximately? Yes.  Moving in the right direction? Definitely. Growing? Absolutely. In the right place, doing the right thing, at the right moment? Yes. Living in the will of God? By His grace.

Asked if there were tactful and kind ways to tell someone they had bad breath, I answered:

Put it on yourself.

Buy some of those breath strips and put one in your mouth. Then offer them one and say, "I seem to need these after every meal and sometimes between meals. It is surprising how quickly my breath gets a little offensive. I guess that's true of everyone."

If that doesn't work, not much else may.

We were asked, “Do you find that most people who believe in Creationism look extremely un-evolved?” I answered:

No, but I have this amazing craving for bananas.

To the question, “How big is your imagination?” I answered:


It is bigger than my present reality,
but it shapes my future reality.

It is greater than my thoughts,
for my thoughts cannot fully contain all there is.

It is far more expansive than my words,
and words cannot express the wonders I see in my mind's eye.

It is more magnificent than anything I have ever seen
for it always takes me to the next step beyond.

It is pretty big.

Someone asked, “What?” I answered:

or even ...
WHAT will be will be.
The WHAT of it is the IT of it or IS IT?



 “If you were to fart in a business meeting and get caught, what would you say to make light of the situation?”

Probably just "Excuse me."

However I heard a funny story of a fellow named Tom, like me, who was teaching a class and someone flatulated.

The expulsion of air sounded like his name in his ear and he kept askin who called his name ... to the point of insisting.

After that, all of the people there started referring to farting as "talking to Tom."

 “How far would you go on a first date?”

 I answered this one from a father’s perspective:

I'd say 5 miles maximum and if it is a young lady I think of as a daughter, with your hands in your pocket the whole time except when you are driving. Preferably, though, being driven by your aged grandmother. That will go well for the second, third, and 25th dates. hand-holding can commence with engagement and kissing - well you can rehearse that at the wedding rehearsal.

Mostly kidding - but not entirely.

“Do you ever feel pressured nowadays to produce enough things to talk about because of everyone always commenting on people's 'banter'?”

This question afforded a wonderful opportunity to interject an observation. Most of us feel inadequate as conversationalist because we have not developed the art of active listening and have not learned how to ask the right questions. Here is my answer:

We were asked how to find lost things. I gave my process:

1. First, I look around.
2. Then I try to visualize the last time I remember having it and where I was.
3. I look there.
4. Then, I retrace my recent steps.
5, Somewhere along the line, I pray for guidance.
6. Then, I ask people when they last saw me with it or if they borrowed it.
7. Then I listen to their advice about where to find it - usually stuff I've already done, but sometimes it is helpful.
8. I walk away and do something else.
9. I come back and do all of those steps again and ask deeper questions of myself.
10. I start looking in all the illogical places like the floor around the toilet (where I have often found my wallet) and places like that.
11. I walk away again.
12. I start looking for something else.
13. Eventually it turns up in either some (a) really unlikely place that suddenly makes sense or (b) some likely place where I have looked before.


Why did Jesus have to sacrifice himself to himself to keep him from sending us to hell?

Whenever you forgive, you sacrifice. You absorb the pain and suffering of what is inflicted upon you. You choose not to relieve your pain through revenge, retribution, or in any other way. You take the penalty on your life. That is what God in Christ did for us on the cross. He simply absorbed the pain, suffering, and justice for our sins. The physical, visible event was an outward manifestation and demonstration of the invisible and spiritual act of forgiving. We tend to see it in judicial and natural terms, but this is really about grace and eternity and God's way of expressing His love. It is relational. He does everything possible to block our way to hell. It is not His intent for us. There is no need for it. All the provision is made.

From the cross, Jesus shouts, "STOP!!! You don't need to do that. you don't need to go there. You don't need to choose that. Come to me and live!"

Of course God could over-rule our free will, but then we could not enter into a love relationship with Him and that would not be loving of Him. We'd all just be Stepford Wives.


When asked the best way to show love to a person, I answered:

Learn their love language and speak, in it, plainly and honestly to them.

Read, "The Five Love Languages" by


Chapman -

the Five Love Languages "We all know that the greatest commandment is to love. However, relatively few of us know how to express our love in the heart language of our family and friends Fortunately, in The Five Love Languages Gary Chapman identifies the five primary love languages and teaches us how to use these languages to express our love. Although this edition of The Five Love Languages was written specifically for couples, the basic principles Chapman explores will apply to all relationships.

Asked for a comeback when someone calls us fat, I answered:

I am blessed with bountiful nourishment and the capacity to store up provisions for a long and desolate winter.

I’m trying to write a song, and I want something a long the lines of you like somebody, then you tell them and it changes any ideas?

Ohhhhh ... awwwww ... oooooo, aw....
I feel Soooooo bad.
Miss what I had...
We once were a friendship connection
But I told you of my affection
Now our love is complicated
And I feel so castigated.
Ohhhhh ... awwwww ... oooooo, aw....
I feel Soooooo bad.
Let's go back to simplicity.
Let's return to the felicity.
I'd rather have you as a bud
Than bury my face in mud.

and that sort of thing ...




The key to not throwing in the towel and quitting on your dream may be as simple as one simple action following a decisive choice.

Decide to do something and then, do something.

In so doing, you will have taken a step. You will have closed the gap between inaction and action and you will have stayed in the ball game for one more inning.

You are staying alive. Sometimes staying alive to fight another day is enough. It's called, "hanging on."

"When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. " Franklin D. Roosevelt


The opposite of keeping on is not so much turning off as it is neglect. “Keep” suggests vigilance and attention. "On" is certainly across the chart from "off", but the pathway to off is inattention. It is not taking the next step of vigilance.


Pace yourself, relax, give yourself a break, but do something for your business or ministry today. Do it consciously and give yourself credit for it. You may fail. When you do, keep this in mind:

"When the world says, "Give up,"
Hope whispers, "Try it one more time.""
- Author Unknown

"Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail. " - Ralph Waldo Emerson

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 15:13 (New International Version)

The pathway of perseverance may not always be dramatic action or massive results, but it will always involve a choice and a response. On that pathway, there is hope. Where there is hope there is joy. Where there is joy, there is energy.  God is the source, but if we are not open to trusting, we will dam the source of our power. The keep on we must move forward.


K – Kinesthetic

The Free Dictionary  defines this as “The sense that detects bodily position, weight, or movement of the muscles, tendons, and joints.” Applied to learning of behaviors it is about doing a behavior until it becomes a part of our lives. Some people call this habit formation. Keeping on involves developing behavioral patterns that become a natural part of our lives.  Trusting is often manifested in touching. Touch your dream; touch the project; touch the challenge. Keep your hands on what you are keeping on.


Touch it with your TIME - Spend time thinking of the desired outcomes. When you are tired from the task, take time to think about why you are doing what you are doing.

Touch it with your OPTIMISM -  Peak to yourself and others with wholesome, uplifting, and optimistic words and ideas. Ephesians 4:29 (New International Version) reminds us:

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful  for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

Touch it with your UNDERSTANDING - Be a student of your mission, dream, and vision. Study it with a passion to learn and grasp the reality in your mind. Get details and concepts. Mull them over and over. Become an expert on your own life mission.

Touch in in COMMUNITY - Stand alone and fall. Stand with others and you keep standing. One of the easiest ways to fall into discouragement and loss of vision is to disassociate ourselves from positive people who build us up. Hang around some people who are on the road to making it and some who have almost . Associate with people who can serve as role models so you can see the fruit on the tree. Talk and listen to people who consistently say, "I can" and keep those who "can't" in the periphery of your circle of influence or outside it altogether. This is one of the inherent geniuses of network marketing and of the church.

Touch it with HOPE - Never lose hope. Always keep hope alive. This is the Spirit's function in your life.

E – Enthusiasm

Literally, from the Latin, enthusiasm mean having God within us. You must remain enthusiastic and nurture the spark of life and passion within you even when you are emotionally and physically drained. That requires connecting to God’s power at the very depth of your being, His Spirit within you. It takes faith and lots of it.

Paul's prayer for the Romans was based upon the reality of their relationship with God and he trusts that God is in them through the Holy Spirit and that God has the capacity to fill them with these qualities.

The person who experience real enthusiasm would be advised to make the dreams and goals of his or her life matters of instense and satisfying prayer - not only when thinking about the outcomes, but when strength is needed for the daily grind.

God is present and God will help and renew your enthusiasm

E - Elevate

There is much to elevate. Elevate your feet a bit for one thing; take a load off and relax.  You must also elevate your mission in your own thinking. Elevate the importance of what you are doing in your own thinking.

Dale Carnegie said,

“Don't be afraid to give your best to what seemingly are small jobs.  Every time you conquer one it makes you that much stronger.  If you do the little jobs well, the big ones will tend to take care of themselves. "

And never feel ashamed of who YOU are. You are a person of significance. Never let anyone make you feel small because of your dreams or life mission :

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss)

P – Persevere

Press on with consistency and commitment. It is all in the PRESS.

Press on with the POWER of God. Apart from that power, we do not have the strength to press anything. Press without stress.

Press on with RESOLVE - Sing with the old spiritual, "A'int nobody gonna turn me 'round." Press or regress.

Press on with ENERGY - Energy is a strange thing. If you don't use it, you don't conserve it. You lose it. If you're not pressed, you'll get depressed.

Press on with SINCERITY - Have a sincere and purposeful focus at all times. We will scatter without sincere and pure goals. Press or digress.\

Press with SUCCESS - The real success is in the journey. Press toward success.

President Calvin Coolidge said,

“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.  Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent.  Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.  Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.  Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.  The slogan “press on” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."


O – Orientation 

The scriptures point us to a righteous life. Righteousness is about right relationships, especially about being rightly related to God and about moving in the right direction. Check your compass spiritually and in every other dimension of life and makes sure that your movement is oriented toward your goal. You are on a path. You are not at your desitination. Don't judge yourself by where you are, but by progress and vision. Orient yourself in the direction of God's best for your life and keep on keeping on - even if today's step is a baby step.

Ella Fitzgerald said,

"It isn't where you came from, its where you're going that counts."


Never quit. Create momentum in your life by simply not quitting. Make that a decision and even if you can ‘t do much, do something. Perfectionism is not your friend. It will whisper in your ear that because you are not the best yet, there is no point. Don’t listen. Listen instead to Sir Winston Churchill:

Never give in, never give in, never; never; never; never - in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense”

There will be some setbacks and step backs. There will be some mistakes and failures. Never mind them.

You were made for a purpose. Keep on keeping on.


Bonus Quotes on Perseverance

Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish. – John Quincy Adams


Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties

It is the curse of talent that, although it labors with greater steadiness and perseverance than genius, it does not reach its goal, while genius already on the summit of the ideal, gazes laughingly about.  – Robert A. Schumann


Perseverance is more prevailing than violence; and many things which cannot be overcome when they are together, yield themselves up when taken little by little.  - Plutarch


Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints. (Ephesians 6:18)


Genius is divine perseverance. Genius I cannot claim nor even extra brightness but perseverance all can have.  – Woodrow Wilson