Christmas Present: Put A Tebow On It

Broncomaniacs, If You Can’t Hear God Now, You Might Never

Inspirational leadership requires that you be inspired, first and foremost. So to deliver a fresh dose of inspiration, please pardon me if I bring in the “G-word” today – “God.” Because whether or not you are a fan of the unabashedly-religious Tim Tebow, or of my beloved Denver Broncos (for whom he plays), or even of sports in general… I’m here today to tell you that you are Ebenezer Scrooge, and the Spirits are coming to call.

I don’t mean that you’re a miserly, grumpy old man (though you might be that, too). I mean that you are being visited by Spirits – not in the form of Tim Tebow, but of the truly-miraculous events currently befalling Tebow and his team – the Spirits of Christmas (and Broncos) past, present, and future. And unless you turn even a more deaf ear to the Spirits than did the original Scrooge, you’re likely to gain a new generosity of spirit, a new willingness to believe in the Divine, and (dare I say it?), a new Inspiration.

Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” the story to which I refer, begins by pointing out that Old Marley, Scrooge’s former business partner, was dead – dead as a doornail. And Dickens declares that this fact must be clearly understood, or the rest of the story doesn’t bring you the power it should.

The same is true of the Broncos this year. The Broncos were dead as a doornail, and this was clearly understood by everyone – and I mean EVERY ONE – who follows pro football this year. The team was 1-4, and had to dismiss a proven starting quarterback in favor of an untested, reputedly unskilled quarterback in his second year as a professional (Tebow). Essentially, the Broncos had to start over, a little more than a month into a four-month season. They were in last place. They couldn’t score. They couldn’t stop an opponent from scoring at will. Experts were predicting the Broncos might not win another game. They were dead as a doornail.

Enter Tebow, who’s become famous for his open Christianity, to include kneeling in prayer on the gridiron in a pose that’s come to be known as “Tebowing.” He’s been mocked by everyone – and I mean EVERY ONE – from his bosses to leading media experts – as much for his Tebowing as for his apparent lack of skill as a passer of the football. But a weird thing has happened since Tebow started leading the team: the Broncos have won seven out of eight games with this unskilled neophyte at the helm. In all of those games, the Broncos were big underdogs. In all of those games, they were behind late in the game. And every come-from-behind victory has defied explanation by anyone who’s even a casual observer (let alone a rabid Broncos fan like myself).

Yesterday’s miraculous win over the Chicago Bears, in which the Broncos trailed by 10 points with a little over two minutes left and ended up winning by three in overtime, was so improbable it left everyone – and I mean EVERY ONE – shaking their heads in disbelief. No one can explain the win, let alone its place at the end of a long string of nearly-equal miracle victories. According to the experts, Tebow still can’t pass, the Broncos are still no good, but they’re winning. They’re holding other teams out of the end zone… they’re scoring what they need to score in nearly every game… and now, they’re in sole possession of first place with an 8-5 record.

A miracle is anything that happens which can’t be explained by human reason – good, or bad, as reckoned from your own self-interested perspective. So, since everyone – and I mean EVERY ONE – is without an explanation of the Broncos’ recent success, one must at least consider some possibilities that we, in today’s cynical world, often are very quick (blindingly quick) to dismiss: it’s possible there really is a God, that He gives a crap about YOU, and that He’s sending His Spirits to pay you a critical visitation which might be no less the “one chance and hope of redemption” than the one Dickens’ Scrooge got when his dead-as-a-doornail partner sent some ghosts to bug him one Christmas Eve.

If there really is a God whose sense of humor permits him to speak to all of us through such a silly medium as pro football… if there really is… would that help you explain the Broncos’ (and Tebow’s) miraculous victories of late? God knows the usual stuff (analysis, statistics, prognostication, player evaluation, match-up assessment, etc., etc.) isn’t working… right? So – play along with me here – what if there really is a God who is trying to get your attention? What if He’s willing to go to great lengths – even as far as exhuming a dead football team – to ring your rusty doorbell?

You can see the Spirit of Christmas (and Broncos) future in Tim Tebow, to be sure. However, of all the players in this drama, I think the unusual (OK, miraculous) events of late are intended LEAST of all for Tebow. Perhaps he’s already got whatever message God has for him these days. My guess is that he won’t really get what all this means until he’s a grumpy old miser, many years from now. No, the principal Spirit at work here is the Spirit of Christmas (and Broncos) present.

The Broncos’ run is a lesson for everyone – and I mean EVERY ONE.

It’s a lesson for all the so-called experts, who’ve said all along (and still maintain) that Tebow doesn’t have the skills to be a successful pro quarterback, and that the Broncos don’t match up well against other NFL teams. They’re not wrong. They’re experts. But maybe the lesson for them is that miracles still happen, and they wouldn’t BE miracles if the Broncos (or Tebow) could really claim credit. Sure, the team’s belief in itself is critical… but a lot of teams have believed in themselves only to be defeated by superior opponents. What makes this team different, now, and especially at this time of year?

It’s a lesson for the Broncos fans themselves, who also can’t explain it, but sure are enjoying the ride. I listened to caller after caller on postgame shows last evening, explaining that when things looked bleakest in the fourth quarter of yesterday’s game, they’d promised someone they’d show up in church next Sunday if the Broncos could somehow pull off another miracle win. “And so that’s just where my butt will be,” each said, “but in the early service, of course. I don’t want to miss the next game.” We’re fans, sure, and our belief in our Broncos is irrational on its face. But this 2011 miracle season goes beyond what even the most devoted of us could’ve imagined. Can it really be just luck, or a misunderstanding of the Broncos’ hidden (until recently) prowess?

It’s certainly a lesson for the Broncos’ opponents, who are shocked on a weekly basis with the loss they take at the team’s hands. They have every right to be disappointed – but their disdain for the team that beats them goes beyond the usual disappointment; they know they’re better than the Broncos, but they just can’t explain why they ended up on the wrong side of the final score. Was it really just the mistakes made by each opponent in the closing minutes of each game, every single week of late (save one)?

No, the Spirit of this Christmas present is that, love or hate the Broncos or their devoted young quarterback, everyone – and I mean EVERY ONE – who observes this remarkable Denver season is literally forced to look beyond the rational explanations they’ve assigned to their world and consider whether something more meaningful may be at work. Something like this makes you do one of two things: either you shut your eyes tight and turn away, or you soak it all in and find yourself newly inspired.

If the dead-as-a-doornail Broncos could turn their season around on a dime like this, isn’t it possible I could rejuvenate my business when I thought it was equally dead? If Tebow can go 7-1 when his admittedly-more-skilled predecessor left with a 1-4 record, isn’t it possible I could start closing sales and completing projects like never before? If an exciting young player who doesn’t know any better than to think he can make a winner out of a dead team actually does JUST that… what’s possible for me?

One nod to the Spirit of Christmas (and Broncos) past: John Elway, the legendary Hall-of-Fame Broncos quarterback of yesteryear, has thus far been very public about his refusal to jump on the Tebow bandwagon. He doesn’t see the skills. He doesn’t see the improvement. He doesn’t see a future for Tim Tebow as a big-time NFL quarterback.

Why is that? I’ve always been a big fan of John Elway… but it’s my suspicion that this great Divine message is intended more for him than for anyone else. Here’s a guy who actually had surgery to REMOVE his biceps tendon – a critical body part you’d think one would need to play quarterback in the NFL. But get this: before he lost his “good right arm,” Elway lost four Super Bowls by notoriously lopsided scores. After the surgery, with a “miracle arm” that shouldn’t have been capable of throwing the football the way it did, Elway cruised to two consecutive victories in the big game.

Maybe, for all the miraculous comebacks and surgeries and victories he experienced, John didn’t get the message back then. The grace of God (if any… remember, we’re just supposin’ here) was surely bestowed on John Elway as a player, but he never seemed to know it. He trusted his good right arm, and convinced himself they were his own great skills that made all those glorious accomplishments possible. Maybe – just maybe – Marley has sent him a new Spirit to show him otherwise. Maybe all the things he can’t see today (dance, though they might, right before his eyes) can only be viewed through the lens of his personal past.

John Elway’s inspiration (or lack thereof) is none of my business, and it’s none of yours. That’s between John and his Maker. But the great thing about God (if any) is that He can teach all of us the lessons we need with one silly football team. How many times have I crossed the proverbial goal line and spiked the proverbial ball, proud of my own amazing brilliance and ability, and giving myself all the credit? How often have I doubted the Divine, and trusted instead to my own good right arm? How many victories have left me shaking my head in disbelief, unable to rationally explain the miracles all around me, even when others could see them so plainly?

What a blessing to behold this Broncos season, and Tim Tebow’s amazing run. And what a lesson. One of these weeks, the “luck” will run out, and everyone who shut tight their eyes against the possibility of seeing a miracle will throw those eyes open with a lusty cry of “See, I told you!” That’s okay. What’s happened the last eight weeks in Denver, and on gridirons all over the U.S. where the Broncos played, cannot now be undone. It will always be there, on display in the history books, to be seen by anyone with open eyes.

If you aren’t following the Broncos at all this year, you probably haven’t read this far – but there is some other miracle out there in your immediate vicinity, waiting for you to notice it. For those of us who do bleed orange and blue, though, this particular demonstration of Divinity is near, and it’s current. Let’s not forget it. Let’s keep the lesson well, and draw from it the inspiration of the seasons – both holiday, and football.

Debunking Myths About End-Time Prophecy Presenters: Presentations – Part 1

All Scripture References Taken From The Original King James Version Of the Bible

In order to see the process by which you calculate the Seven Year Tribulation, I must first take you back a bit, give some background information, so hopefully you can better understand how we get from the Prophet Daniel’s vision, (READ Daniel 9:1-27), all the way down to the seven, (7), years of tribulation as foretold in the Holy scriptures.

The book of Daniel is a great starting point, (READ 9:1-5), as this passage of scripture talks about how the prophet Daniel, (by way of searching the scriptures), came upon the knowledge of how many years of desolation, (seventy), would be determined upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and their land. This would cause them to suffer in Babylonian captivity, for their non-ceasing sin of following, serving, and worshiping idol gods. The prophet Jeremiah warned his people, (Jews of Judah/Israel), of his vision, however, the people refused to hear him.

READ Jeremiah (25:1-14), focus on verses, (11 & 12). These particular verses lay out in specifics, (for those looking for that element), the very harsh punishment levied upon God’s chosen people, by the Lord, for their repeated disobedience of his WORD. It is worthy to note, (this chapter also points out), that God is NO respecter of persons, groups or ethnicity, because after he, (God), punished his own people, (Israeli Jews), he also punished King Nebuchadrezzar, (the king of Babylon), and the Chaldeans for their “iniquity” and made their land of Babylon a “perpetual desolation. ” God will chasten those who are his chosen people and those who are not, if we disobey HIS COMMANDMENTS.

Going forward with my original point, when Daniel discovered the profound information I mentioned above, he began to pray and fast unto the Lord for his people, (Israeli Jews), to be spared God’s harsh punishment, while at the same time confessing his own sins as well as the sins of his people. (READ Daniel 9: 3-20 for his prayer). Daniel prayed until the answer from the Lord came, by Gabriel, (vs. 21), who Daniel had seen in his vision.

In verses, (21-27), we get the full account of the message Gabriel delivered to Daniel from the Lord. Here is what Gabriel said, (I PARAPHRASE), Gabriel wanted to make sure that Daniel completely understood the message/answer from God. First he told the prophet that, (from the beginning of his prayer and fasting), God had heard Daniel’s prayers and had dispatched Gabriel with the answer to Daniel’s fervent prayer. He also let Daniel know that he was, (as prophet of God), greatly loved. (vs. 23)

NOTE: Before, I go any further, I’ve got some explaining to do about the way time was calculated, in terms of, (years, months, weeks and days), at the time of Daniel’s and other minor prophet’s visions involving end time prophecy. Spans or frames of time were always calculated using the Babylonian/Jewish/Lunar calendar. These terms are used interchangeably, and I shall do so throughout this article.

It’s worth noting that when referring to time frames or spans in the context of Biblical prophecy, (in the time before and after Christ’s death), one will ALWAYS need to consider the set of circumstances that surround the scripture text. For example, a “week” could refer to days, or even years, I’ll go into more detail before I do, (what I call), calculating down to the last seven years of tribulation.

Moving on, the answer that Gabriel delivered to Daniel was thus; (vs.24), that there was “seventy weeks, ” (70), levied upon Daniel’s people and the holy land of Jerusalem, and that there would be six, (6), things the Jews would have to complete during this timeframe.

“To finish the transgression, To make an end of sins, To make reconciliation for iniquity, To bring in everlasting righteousness, To seal up the vision and prophecy, To anoint the most Holy or the Holy of Holies”

Verse, (25), of the answer to Daniel’s vision goes on to lay out a specific time frame/span between the time the order/decree given, (to the Prophet Nehemiah by King Artaxerxes… Nehemiah 2:1-6, to rebuild the holy city of Jerusalem), until the time of the Messiah’s entrance into the newly built city on his donkey, would be “seven weeks” “and threescore and two weeks. ” This verse also lets us know that the streets, and the walls of the city would be restored during “TROUBLED TIMES, ” in other words a time of “TRIBULATION.”

POINT 1: I would like to point out that in verse, (25), the time frame is split into, (2), separate blocks, the reason for this is not clearly defined in scripture, therefore, I will not venture a guess, I’ll let it stand as it is, maybe some of my viewers can figure or research it out, might be a great exercise. Give it a try, and see what you can find out.

POINT 2: When doing, what I call, (CALCULATING DOWN TO THE SEVEN YEARS OF TRIBULATION), you MUST use a Jewish/Babylonian/Lunar calendar which only has, (360), days per year, (30) days a month, as opposed to the most popular solar calendar we use today. This calendar came into the Jewish population, I believe, when the Jewish exiles returned to the rebuilt city of Jerusalem from Babylonian captivity.

While in captivity, (as Jerusalem was suffering through the 70 years of desolations… per Jeremiah’s vision), the Jews learned how to calculate months by watching how long it took the moon to revolve around the earth. Usually it took between 29/30 days to make the rotation. They brought this method back to Jerusalem upon their return from exile. That is the reason I call this style, the Babylonian method.

Having given all of you more history than you probably wanted to read, let’s get to it… Calculating Down To The Seven Years Of Tribulation. Working off the Jewish/Babylonian calendar here is how Daniel’s (70) weeks of prophetic years will work:


Honoring the Dearly Departed: What Can We Learn About Presentations From a Good Eulogy?

Sorry about the morbid title, but if you bear with me you will find this article uplifting. I’ve been to a couple of funerals recently, and I noticed something about eulogies.

Most of us don’t attend many funerals, and we give even fewer eulogies. You don’t really learn how to give a eulogy in school. So how do we manage to come up with some comforting, thought provoking, or even inspiring words under these difficult circumstances? Most of us model what we see on TV and in movies.

The tributes offered in funerals on TV and in movies are usually pretty good. They should be, because they are written by professional writers. We sometimes see footage of funerals of high profile people on TV. Celebrities like Princess Diana, Michael Jackson, and Whitney Houston come to mind. Those paying tribute to such celebrities are often dramatic and talented themselves. Some of them no doubt have help from professional speech writers as well.

When an ordinary person – meaning someone other than Prince Charles, Elton John, or the President of the United States – gives a eulogy based on the celebrity model, it often sounds pompous. The other mourners are usually very forgiving. After all, they are used to hearing similar tributes on TV, and they understand these are trying circumstances for the speaker.

But the most moving, impactful, memorable, and appreciated eulogies are those that use simple words and no artifice. They are raw and unpolished. They tell stories, they come from the heart, they are authentic.

People at a funeral are not interested in polish. Stumbling over a word, a cracking voice, an awkward pause, and repetitive comments don’t matter to them. They are there to connect with other human beings, and to feel closer to someone who has left them. Real people aren’t as polished as actors. They don’t have to be. In fact, they can’t be, or they wouldn’t seem real.

In my persuasive business presentation workshops I show two videos back to back. The first is Willie Nelson singing “Always on my Mind.” The second is the Pet Shop Boys singing – you guessed it – “Always on my Mind.” I ask the participants to evaluate the performers on a number of criteria: which singer is better looking, better dressed, more polished, who has the better voice, and which version is more danceable. The Pet Shop Boys win on all counts. Then I ask the group which performance they preferred overall. Willie wins hands down every time!

“Always on my Mind” tells the story of a man pleading with his beloved to give him another chance. It is full of heart wrenching emotion. It is not something you would dance to! The Pet Shop Boys could sing the tax code to their techno beat and get the same result: people will want to get up and dance. Willie pours his guts out, and everyone can feel his pain. He is gritty, soulful, vulnerable, authentic.

Speaking to people is a human process. Humans have flaws. When telling a story or giving a presentation your audience doesn’t expect polished perfection. They want the real deal. They want the real you.

Different Ways to Present Your Collected Stamps

Collection of Postage stamps is a way to learn different things such as religion and cultures of the countries around the globe. It is mostly considered as a hobby, but many individuals look into studying stamps for historical purposes. These stamps are very fragile and can be torn out easily, so extra care and prudence is required when it comes to handling of these stamps. Moreover, the presentation counts a lot and if you want to flaunt your hobby, it should be clean and presentable.

One of the important things to be kept in mind while collecting postage stamps is that they should be stored properly, so that the life span of the stamp increases and also they do not lose their quality. Putting them in an envelope is one of the easiest ways that can be adopted by the stamp collectors. Different varieties of envelopes are available in the market, but one which is most popular among the postage stamp collectors is the transparent envelope, as it allows them to look at the stamps without taking it from the envelope.

But there are people, who would like to store their stamps in a sophisticated way and for such people; stock books are a good option. These books are also available in folder forms with transparent pockets, so that you can arrange all your stamps according to their rank or country or color etc. The good thing about stock books is that they provide the user with the durability and good storage capacity. There is one drawback of these stock books that the viewer can only see the stamps in groups and the option for individual viewing is not available.

Buying a stamp album is also a good option for storing and taking care of the postage stamps. This would not put you through the hassle of creating sections and buying threads to tie them up or staple pins to put them together. But the problem with these ready-made stamp books is that there is surely no room for creativity, as it would be difficult to draw out your own sections and put up different stuff to make it look more presentable.

Collection of postage Stamps can also be called as a different form of art for people who would like to create something special and unique, so that they can show off the journey of their hard work to their friends or relatives. This would require some color papers of your choice, a glue, ribbon to tie papers and your creativity. Once you have everything in your hand, you can easily paste the stamps on either side of the paper. This will not only make it more exciting to look at, but labeling or sorting of the stamps is also trouble-free plus they will be safe inside a book that you have created with your own hands. You can always come up with various sorted sections to put your stamps, such as a section for animals, queens or presidents, monuments etc., so that locating the stamp you want to show will be easy.

It should be noted that collection of postage stamps is a hobby that will open your creativity and let you explore things. This way, you will have knowledge about different cities and countries plus how to keep things in order and good shape.

Older posts »