Friday, February 10, 2006

Budget for Education

In your personal finances, besides, rent, groceries, living expenses, tithes and offerings, make sure you budget in education.

Spend a certain amount on self-improvement like language courses, music lessons, dance lessons, rock-climbing, fencing, kendo, business classes or what-not.

We must improve each year despite our heavy schedules.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Divorce, The Necessary Evil

God hates divorce.

But it is a necessary evil, or to put it another way, the lesser of two evils.

Frankly, I do not understand divorce, and I understand divorce at the same time.

First of all, I understand--after having rented a room from a horrible landlady for 3 months--what it is to live under the same roof of a ungracious, rude and petty woman. Her character came through in the way she dealt with the people around her, not just me but also her son, projecting her frustrations, and problems onto him. I stayed out more, watched soccer matches at coffee shops till late and dreaded returning back to my rented room. At one point, I felt like saying, "I finally know why your husband divorced you!!!!". Of course, I kept that to myself. :)

I pity the son even more. For when I can move out, he cannot.

I do not understand divorce because, what problem is there that cannot be solved in a marriage? What problem, what attitude, what object is there that cannot be removed or changed?

So, coming back to the question, what problem is there that God cannot solve? Nothing, except the hearts of men. Because men have free will, He cannot intervene.

Stubbornness, pride, unforgiveness, denial are the obstacles that stand in the way. No one can change a person except him or herself.

So even if one party changes but the other continues to injure the other one, divorce happens.

Jesus said that God hates divorce but allowed for divorce because of the stubbornness of hearts.

It is not in Gods will or plan for divorce, but at times it is a necessary evil.

I once asked a group of friends of mine why are there Christians who divorce? The reaction had a touch of patronisation. They were lawyers, in their course of work they hand encountered many Christian couples who had divorced. The reason for this is that in my mind "Christian" means one thing and another to them.

"Christian" means to me people who truly make Jesus their Lord and saviour. "Christian" to my listeners mean people who have "Christian" written in the religious column of the application forms or who go to church in body but do not worship in spirit and in truth.

I asked another lawyer friend of mine, and he said "Of course! If a couple submitted to Christ, there would never be any divorce."

Therefore, in marriage, Christ must truly be the Lord. The husband and the wife each must submit to God, instead of letting their own pride be their master. When hearts are submitted before Christ, all things are possible.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Making The Intangible Tangible

In Marketing, there is a concept called making the intangible tangible. An example would be a hotel in order to show that it emphasises cleanliness may put a protective paper wrap around the toilet bowl after it is cleaned. Just cleaning the toilet bowl isn't enough, it must be seen by the customer in order for him/her to perceive and appreciate the effort it went through.

Love is an abstract an intagible thing. Just saying "I love you" having feelings for someone or having an intention isn't enough. Al Capone believed that he was a kind and nice person despite ordering the killings of anyone who got in his way. A lot of alcoholics have feelings of love for their families but did not make the intangible tangible and continue in their ways.

It may be enough for yourself, but for the other people, abstract things must be made tangible.

Just like an idea in your brain, remains an idea unless implemented, any feelings and intentions that we feel or think for others must be expressed through the physical world through atoms, photons and sound waves.

"What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead."
(James 2:14-17)

So when we love the people around us, make sure that you make the intangible tangible. Gifts, cards, a thank-you note, a voucher, something that is tangible realizes what was created in the realm of Logos into the physical world.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

HR: Evaluating Others

I am still amazed at the way HR works in evaluating other people. Most general methods in HR for selecting people are so primitive!

1) Age/Years of experience. This is like saying I want 10 litres of Orange. But is it orange juice, orange concentrate, raw oranges, with pulp or no pulp. Years of experience though useful as a general yeardstick is a very bad indicator of performance ability.

2) Last Drawn Salary. Another way of evaluating the worth of someone. But if that person is very good but just unlucky in the promotion sweepstakes or absolutely worthless but just very good at politicking his way up the ladder? I find this one of the most stupidest ways of evaluating someone.

3) Academic Grades. He may be good at studies, but is he good at being effective?

Motivational Jogging Songs

Having an MP3 player to jog with is a good motivator in jogging.

Having some hard rock songs gives you the extra spurt when jogging.

Here's my list of jogging songs.

The Cup of Life - Ricky Martin
Winter Games - David Foster
Eye of the Tiger (Rocky Theme) - Survivor
Reach - Gloria Estefan
Faith of the Heart (ST:Enterprise Theme) - Russel Watson
Song 2 - Blur
The Power of the Dream - Celine Dion
All For One, All For Love - Bryan, Adams, Rod Steward, Sting
Techno Syndrome (Mortal Kombat) - The Immortals

I like the Mortal Kombat theme, it can actually give me a speed boost, doubling my speed when I play it.

There aren't too many Christian songs for jogging, the pace is too slow and can actually slow you down. The best I've used are the following list, however I've to get my hands on some real hard Christian rock like Petra. Recommendations anyone?

All Things Are Possible - Hillsongs
I Believe The Promise - Hillsongs
Give You My Heart - Hillsongs
Every Move I Make - Out of Eden
God of Wonders - Cliff Young
He Will Carry You - Scott Wesley Brown

Sunday, February 05, 2006

The Meaning of Life

The meaning of life differs from man to man, from day to day and from hour to hour.

What matters, therefore is not the meaning of life in general but rather the specific meaning of a person's life at a given moment.

To put the question in general terms would be comparable to the question posed to a chess champion: "Tell me, Master, what is the best move in the world?"

There simply is no such thing as the best or even a good move apart from a particular situation in a game and the particular personality of one's opponent.

The same holds for human existence. Once should not search for an abstract meaning of life.

Everyone has his own specific vocation or demands fulfilment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated. Thus, everyone's task is as unique as is his specific opportunity to implement it.

As each situation in life represents a challenge to man and presents a problem for him to solve, the question of the meaning of life may actually be reversed.

Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, rather he must recognize that is is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life; to life he can only respond by being responsible.

Thus, logotherapy sees in responsibleness the very essence of human existence.

The Entrepreneur's $50 Challenge

Take $50 from your wallet.

Say to yourself, I will turn this $50 into $100.

Give yourself 1 month to do it.

See Matthew 25:14-28