Saturday, January 31, 2009

End of Era

My wife and I bought our first new car on January 2, 1996. It was a burgundy Honda Accord LX that we babied from day one. And it more than lived up to its reputation for quality and dependability. But it met its demise a couple days ago as my wife was commuting home from work. It was raining and the car in front of her abruptly stopped so she had to hit the brakes, causing her to hit the other car.

Fortunately, my wife escaped the accident unscathed, but our car was totaled, as the attached picture attests. Unfortunately, we had discontinued our collision coverage on it about a year ago to save money so we’ll be car shopping for an extra good deal. We put about 188,000 miles on our old car over the course of 13 years. And I am praying that our next car, while not likely a new one, will be as good an investment as our last one.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Designing Spaces

I am intrigued by other people’s work spaces, as they can be snapshots of insight into a person’s psyche or philosophy of design. As for me, I converted one of our cottage’s spare bedrooms into my work space. My office contains four filing cabinets, three desks, two bookshelves, and one supply closet. I am not sure what that says about me, other than that I am an infomaniac.

As the attached picture attests, I am also a neatnick who likes a relatively clean desk and black, white, and grey hues. For fellow technologists, I use an Apple iMac desktop computer and Airport Express wireless router, a Sprint DSL modem, a General Electric digital answering system, a Radio Shack cordless phone, and a Hewlett Packard scanner and printer.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Coping With Busyness

Contrary to popular opinion, busyness is not next to godliness. While it threatens to dupe us into believing that we are invaluable, graveyards are full of so-called irreplaceable people. We all may be busy but we can cope with busyness by prioritizing our personal and professional lives according to the principles outlined in Scripture.

“Everything is permissible for me,” wrote the apostle Paul, “but not everything is beneficial.” The truth is that there is an awful lot that we could do but it is often a matter of whether or not we should do it. After all is said and done, we want to be able to say “no” to good ideas in order to pursue God ideas. Saying “no” to the rest enables us to say “yes” to the best that God has for us.

I read a card the other day that captures the attitude of many: “Jesus is coming, look busy.” It’d be funny if it weren’t for the fact that many of us act like that. But the good news is that Jesus came to reveal a better way and reminded us: “I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.”

Part of the trouble with living in our fast-paced times is that often we allow the busyness of life to choke out our dreams and destinies, not to mention our purposes and passions. Sadly, many of us settle for being an echo of someone else instead of the unique voice that God created us to be. It is helpful to remember that the concert we are called to play cannot be performed if we only copy other people’s music.