Sept. 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"If you want to learn something new, concentrate on getting that 'right feeling' that is true to yourself. Take the risk of letting go the precious little control you've struggled to gain, letting go enough to immerse yourself in what you are doing. Then - do it!"
 
~ Drs. Tom Rusk & Randy Read

 

THE SEARCH IS OVER!
 
Have you ever read Shel Silverstein's wonderful book, "The Missing Piece and the Big O"? It's a whimsical fable that has touched readers of all ages. It chronicles the search most of us have undertaken at one time or another in our lives to find the one person who can make us whole.
 
As the "Missing Piece" searches, it encounters other "parts." Some of them fit, but cannot roll. Others have too many pieces missing - while still others have too many pieces. The missing piece continues the futile search until one day it meets the "Big O" - a whole (not a part) with no pieces missing.
 
Thinking it had, at last, found its whole, the Missing Piece exclaims, "I think you are the one I have been waiting for - maybe I am your missing piece . . . I was hoping that I could roll with you." The Big O replied, "But I am not missing a piece . . . perhaps you could roll by yourself."
 
How often have we all felt that we needed someone else to be whole (or to roll) - not realizing that we are all in fact already the "Big O." We are already self-contained, have the ability to roll in any direction we like, and need nothing else to achieve every dream we've ever had. Then, unexpectedly, we find that there are others who are also "Big O's," with whom we can share our own "wholeness."
 
If I've lost you with this mysterious tale, go by the library or pick up a copy of this unusual story. Trust me - you'll understand. It's the type of book you can give to a loved one who may be feeling like a "Missing Piece."
Posted in Morning Coffee
Aug. 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"I always wanted to be somebody. Now I realize I should have been more specific."
 
~ Lily Tomlin (from her "One Woman Show")

 

AGE DOESN'T MATTER!
 
Whether you're 23, 43 or 73, ask yourself this wonderfully refreshing question: "What do I want to be when I grow up?" Regardless of our age, it's so easy to lose sight of the specific "somebody" we always wanted to be. What's more, the "somebody" we had in mind in our 20's may be someone different in our 50's.
 
Worse yet, maybe we grew up to be the "somebody" someone else had in mind - like our mother or father. The influence of those around us often prevents us from even asking the question "What do I want to be . . . ?" We try so hard to be their somebody that we don't allow ourselves to grow up at all.
 
So . . . going back to the matter of age, it doesn't matter WHEN we decide who we want to be so much as that we DO decide. It is at that moment that a catharsis takes place, and we rid ourselves of everyone else's determination of our identity. We are free . . . free to become the person of our dreams.
 
Is it easy to develop and maintain our new identity? No. Our day-to-day activities will still attempt to distract us from our new persona. Nevertheless, as artist D. Morgan points out in one of her paintings, "The impossible dream - isn't!" Take a quiet moment today, just for yourself, and ask, "Am I the somebody I wanted to be?"
Posted in Morning Coffee
July 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles he has overcome trying to succeed."
 
~ Booker T. Washington

 

ON-THE-JOB STRAINING?
 
Ever get that “burned out” feeling? You’re operating at maximum capacity and doing a darn good job of it, but the inspiration and the motivation start to wane. Don’t feel badly about it – after all, you can only really hit a slump when you’ve been experiencing a streak of success! Slumps do not happen to “losers,” because frankly, they’re always in a perpetual slump!
 
So what can be done when you hit a bump in the road? Dr. Robert H. Schuller once observed that “when you can’t solve the problem, manage it.” Maybe you can’t control whatever outside forces are weighing down on your ability to move forward. You can, however, take a break and take a step back to look at things you actually can control.
 
If you’re banging your head against a wall, please stop and walk away! If success lies beyond that wall, you’ll have a much better chance of getting there by going around your obstacles and not through them. Walls are not doorways – you need to refresh your perspective and find passage back to your previously winning ways.
 
Perhaps you’ve just gotten so good at what you do that you’ve forgotten “the basics” of your activities. It’s like you’re operating on “auto-pilot,” and there are a thousand little details that you don’t even think about anymore as you carry on your routine. Take some time to “re-train” yourself. Start by pretending it’s your first day on the job and everything is new.
 
New employees who have to learn the ropes often bring a fresh perspective that exposes ways to do things more efficiently. Look through your “apprentice” eyes for new ways of working, and it’s a good bet that your performance will improve, and you’ll find yourself operating with renewed enthusiasm. Now, give yourself a bonus!
Posted in Morning Coffee
June 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"It is a simple procedure to calculate the number of seeds in an apple. But, who among us can say how many apples there are in a seed?"
 
~ Dr. Wayne Dyer

 

WANT ABUNDANCE IN YOUR LIFE?
 
Who among us would answer "NO" to that question? Yet abundance often seems beyond our reach. We see it in others, but do not believe it is in us. We see ourselves as the apple (limited), rather than the seed (limitless).
 
So, what's the first step on the road to abundance? Wayne Dyer thinks it is giving thanks - for what you already have. That might include good health, a new baby on the way, loving parents, a career you enjoy, or money in the bank. You do have a few things going for you - right?
 
Just as the potential of the seed in the apple is limitless, so is your ability to attract abundance. By focusing on what you already have, you begin to deny what you don't. Your attention is drawn away from the scarcity in your life - and towards the abundance that already exists in your world.
 
You may be thinking that when you achieve abundance, you will finally be complete. Therein lies the surprise - that you are already complete. You are never going to get it all, because you have it all already. That's right. If you are not currently thankful for the good in your life, having more of it will make no difference.
 
The secret to abundance then lies within you. Place your thoughts squarely on what you already have, be grateful, and it will expand beyond your wildest dreams. Believe you have nothing until you get more, and you will spiral endlessly downward in despair at how unjustly the world is treating you.
 
Want abundance in your life? Think about it!
Posted in Morning Coffee
May 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"If you're gonna go, go like hell.
If your mind's not made up,
don't use your spurs."
 
~ "Don't Squat With Your Spurs On!" ("A Cowboy's Guide to Life" by Texas Bix Bender)

 

LIVE WITH PASSION!
 
When you're ready to ride, don't wear your Nikes. Put on your boots and spurs, and let your horse know you mean to ride hard. Then - ride with passion.
 
How many times have you thought of achieving a dream - only to spend more time in the dreaming and planning than in the doing? No problem - we all do it from time to time. The old nemesis - fear of failure and the unknown - haunts all of us occasionally, keeping us from reaching our objective.
 
Think back to the last time you took action with a burning passion! Were you competing for a gold medal, fighting for your life under adverse circumstances, or vying for the heart of your beloved? Something was motivating you to the limit, and you refused to quit.
 
So, what's your passion right now - today? Maybe it's an education, a new career, getting in shape, having more freedom, money & status, or closer family ties. Whatever your desired direction in life, put on your spurs, mount your horse, and hit the trail! There's no greater joy in life than putting everything you've got into an achievement - and then realizing you've overcome all the obstacles.
 
Ride hard, buckaroo!
Posted in Morning Coffee
April 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"Cheshire-Puss," . . . said Alice, "would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"
"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," said the Cat.
"I don't much care where - " said Alice
"Then it doesn't matter which way you go," said the Cat.
" - so long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation.
"Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."
 
~ from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

 

KNOW WHICH DIRECTION TO TAKE?
 
Alice had no destination in mind when she began walking - no goal or objective to be achieved. She just wanted to "get somewhere." Might there be a parallel to that simple lesson in the business of everyday living?
 
In the average 168-hour week, chances are good that each of us will sleep for approximately 56 hours. That leaves about 112 hours for work and play. Whether or not we know which direction to take each week, we still have that same 112 hours.
 
If we choose a destination for the week - in the form of some personal or business goal - then set out in that direction, chances are good we will arrive. We will have -0- hours left at the end of the week, and will have achieved our objective.
 
The reverse is also true. When we allow the week to happen to us, vaguely hoping to "get somewhere," yet having no destination in mind, we still end the week with -0- hours remaining. The difference, of course, is that we accomplish no worthwhile objective.
 
How often have we been reminded of the importance of having goals and writing them down? With clearly defined goals, we can build a roadmap to our greatest achievements. Without them, we are like a ship without a rudder, unlikely to even get out of the harbor without ending up aground on the beach.
 
Choosing a worthy destination for our lives is a simple task. We get to choose any direction that excites and fulfills us. Then, once chosen, we need only construct our own "yellow brick road" to take us there.
Posted in Morning Coffee
March 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"We stand at the crossroads each minute, each hour, each day, making choices. We choose the thoughts we allow ourselves to think, the passions we allow ourselves to feel, and the actions we allow ourselves to perform. Each choice is made in the context of whatever value system we've selected to govern our lives. In selecting that value system, we are, in a very real way, making the most important choice we will ever make."
~ Benjamin Franklin

 

ENJOY PRIDE OF OWNERSHIP!
 
Remember the day you made the decision to go to college? What about the day you decided to buy that sporty red car? Surely you remember the day you decided you would get married. What about your present career path? Did you purposely decide it's what you want to do? Do you remember making a conscious decision to have three children?
 
Some decisions are relatively simple. You decide to buy a TV, go to the store, write a check - and it's yours. You own it! Other decisions are also easy to make, i.e. the red sports car, but carry a higher price. The decision comes quickly, but entails both a down payment and a commitment to make payments on time for several years. Again, you make the decision to buy and the car is yours - you own it!
 
At some point in life come decisions that shouldn't have been made, but were, as well as those you should have withheld. In high school, a day of classes skipped may have resulted in grades lower than acceptable to your choice of colleges. Later, a poor choice of friends may have resulted in a blemish on your "permanent" record. As an adult, poor decision-making not only may reduce the quality of your life, but of those you love.
 
Regardless, each decision made is yours to keep - you own it! You also own the responsibilities created by the decision, i.e. following a healthy lifestyle to stay trim, working two jobs to keep your commitment to the mortgage company, giving up poorly chosen friends and activities to provide your children with a happy, nurturing home life.
 
Every decision made can turn positive or negative, depending on the actions taken once the decision has been made. Either way - making the decision is followed by ownership of the results. Does "pride of ownership" appeal to you? Buy it, own it, love it!
Posted in Morning Coffee
Feb. 15, 2019

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"To reach the port of heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it - but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor."
 
~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

 

STUCK IN PORT?
 
Imagine the Pearl Harbor attack of 1941 going unanswered . . . Many of our ships found at anchor by attacking planes went down, never to leave the harbor again. Imagine the economy floundering with interest rates at 12%, and learning that the head of "the fed" has taken a six-month, non-working vacation to Tahiti. Imagine how you would have felt on September 12, 2001 if our president had appeared on TV to tell us how sorry he was about the attacks without announcing action to protect us in the future.
 
We expect our nation's leaders to act in times of crisis, don't we? But - what do we expect of ourselves when a family crisis arises, our sales flounder, or we notice the numbers on our scale beginning to creep upward to uncomfortable levels? Do we set sail, or lie at anchor hoping "someone" will do "something?"
 
Babe Ruth sailed against the wind more often than with it. He is remembered for his home runs - 714 of them - yet he struck out 1,330 times in his career. Best of all, he set sail and got out of the harbor (took his bat to the plate) 8,399 times. Had he stayed safely in the dugout, he could have avoided all those strikeouts.
 
So - what about you? Having difficulty setting sail lately? Perhaps it's time to give your engine a little maintenance, or take out a needle and thread to repair torn sails. You may also want to pull out your map to redefine the direction you'll be taking in coming months.
 
If you've been spending too much time at the "Captain's Table" and not enough time on the bridge with the wheel in your hand, perhaps some planning now will send you full speed ahead out of the harbor and with some exotic port of call in sight. Bon Voyage!
Posted in Morning Coffee
Dec. 15, 2018

Morning Coffee

 

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
Today's true story is all the inspiration you will need!

 

SMALL WORLD!
 
The brand new pastor and his wife, newly assigned to their first ministry to reopen a church in urban Brooklyn, arrived in early October excited about their opportunities. When they saw their church, it was very run down and needed much work. They set a goal to have everything done in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.
 
They worked hard, repairing pews, plastering walls, painting, etc. and on Dec. 18 were ahead of schedule and just about finished. On Dec 19 a terrible tempest - a driving rainstorm - hit the area and lasted for two days. On the 21st, the pastor went over to the church.
 
His heart sunk when he saw that the roof had leaked, causing a large area of plaster about 6 feet by 8 feet to fall off the front wall of the sanctuary just behind the pulpit, beginning about head high.
 
The pastor cleaned up the mess on the floor, and not knowing what else to do but postpone the Christmas Eve service, headed home. On the way he noticed that a local business was having a flea market type sale for charity so he stopped in.
 
One of the items was a beautiful, hand-made, ivory colored, crochet table cloth with exquisite work, fine colors and a cross embroidered right in the center. It was just the right size to cover up the hole in the front wall. He bought it and headed back to the church.
 
By this time it had started to snow. An older woman running from the opposite direction was trying to catch the bus. She missed it. The pastor invited her to wait in the warm church for the next bus 45 minutes later. She sat in a pew and paid no attention to the pastor while he got a ladder, hangers etc. to put up the tablecloth as a wall tapestry. The pastor could hardly believe how beautiful it looked and it covered up the entire problem area.
 
Then he noticed the woman walking down the center aisle. Her face was like a sheet. "Pastor," she asked, "Where did you get that tablecloth?" The pastor explained. The woman asked him to check the lower right corner to see if the initials EBG were crocheted into it there. They were. These were the initials of the woman, and she had made this tablecloth 35 years before, in Austria.
 
The woman could hardly believe it as the pastor told how he had just gotten the tablecloth. The woman explained that before the war she and her husband were well-to-do people in Austria. When the Nazis came, she was forced to leave. Her husband was going to follow her the next week. She was captured, sent to prison and never saw her husband or her home again.
 
The pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth; but she made the pastor keep it for the church. The pastor insisted on driving her home - that was the least he could do. She lived on the other side of Staten Island and was only in Brooklyn for the day for a housecleaning job.
 
What a wonderful service they had on Christmas Eve. The church was almost full. The music and the spirit were great. At the end of the service, the pastor and his wife greeted everyone at the door and many said that they would return. One older man, whom the pastor recognized from the neighborhood, continued to sit in one of the pews and stare, and the pastor wondered why he wasn't leaving. The man asked him where he got the tablecloth on the front wall because it was identical to the one that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war and how could there be two tablecloths so much alike?
 
He told the pastor how the Nazis came, how he forced his wife to flee for her safety, and he was supposed to follow her, but he was arrested and put in a concentration camp. He never saw his wife or his home again for all the 35 years in between.
 
The pastor asked him if he would allow him to take him for a little ride. They drove to Staten Island to the same house where the pastor had taken the woman three days earlier. He helped the man climb the three flights of stairs to the woman's apartment, knocked on the door, and saw the greatest Christmas reunion he could ever imagine.
 
A true story
Posted in Morning Coffee
Nov. 15, 2018

Morning Coffee

INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:

 

When Mrs. Klein told her first graders to draw a picture of something for which they were thankful, she thought how little these children, who lived in a deteriorating neighborhood, actually had to be thankful for. She knew that most of the class would draw pictures of turkeys or of bountifully laden Thanksgiving tables. That was what they believed was expected of them.
What took Mrs. Klein aback was Douglas’s picture. Douglas was so forlorn and likely to be found close in her shadow as they went outside for recess.
Douglas’s drawing was simply this:
A hand, obviously, but whose hand? The class was captivated by his image. “I think it must be the hand of God that brings us food,” said one student.
“A farmer,” said another, “because they grow the turkeys.”
“It looks more like a policeman, and they protect us.” “I think,” said Lavinia, who was always so serious, “that it is supposed to be all the hands that help us, but Douglas could only draw one of them.”
Mrs. Klein had almost forgotten Douglas in her pleasure at finding the class so responsive. When she had the others at work on another project, she bent over his desk and asked whose hand it was.
Douglas mumbled, “It’s yours, Teacher.”
Then Mrs. Klein recalled that she had taken Douglas by the hand from time to time; she often did that with the children. But that it should have meant so much to Douglas …
Perhaps, she reflected, this was her Thanksgiving, and everybody’s Thanksgiving—not the material things given unto us, but the small ways that we give something to others.
Posted in Morning Coffee