Monday, September 13, 2010

Put your mask on first, before helping anyone else

Today I wrote to a friend who recently moved and mentioned the Prayer of Jabez…not really the book, but his actual prayer from 1 Chronicles 4:9-10:

Jabez was honored more than his brothers; and his mother named him Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that you would keep me from hurt and harm!” And God granted what he asked. 

Here, Jabez is asking for God to help himself out, he’s not praying on behalf of others, nor is he praying for trivial or even specific things, just his own well-being.

Now I don’t know why it’s in the Bible, but it’s there. To me it seems like it’s like the flight attendant saying, “Make sure your mask is put on first before helping another with his.” In other words, if you ain’t healthy, you ain’t helping no one.

I prayed this for a while in college. Don’t know why I stopped, but I modernized it. Here’s something similar to what I prayed, I encourage you to pray it:

“Oh that you would bless me and increase my influence, and that you will be with me, and that you would keep me from hurt and harm to myself and those around me!”


Blessings, friends!

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

If I Had a Million Dollars

So there was a story on Public Radio the other day about a former public radio reporter who wrote a choose your own adventure novel about winning the lottery. Also, today a friend and I got on the topic of what we’d do with a winning lottery ticket. So here is my incomplete list:

First off, I would make sure my house and all the houses of my family members are paid for. (~1 million)

Second, no debt for any of us. (~1 million)

Third, retirement would be taken care of. I figure we are now 3 to 4 million down. (~2 million)

Now it’s time to have fun.

Give money to the church where I work, to the one I belong and to the parent organization of both. (~3 million/7 million total)

Give money to the places I volunteer. (~2.5 million/9.5 million)

Give money to the Luther Sem. Music and to MSU music and probably St. Olaf (~2 mill/11.5 million)

Give money in honor of my first music teacher Judy Cooper. (~500,000/12 mill)

Give money to Shriner’s Hospital. (1 mill/13 million)

Get some friends out of debt (2 million/15 mill)

Dump money into a startup company (1 mill/16 million)


Wow! I just blew through 16 million dollars I don’t have. I better go buy a lottery ticket.