Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/28/07
“A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains.”
(Dutch Proverb) There are different forms of patience, aren’t there. One has to do with events that happen in our personal lives. Another has to do with how leaders in business and politics handle their responsibilities. Can you think of an example where patience was the right choice for you? ;-) Jack

FROM C.B. IN MI: Patience and/or common sense

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Jack’s Wining Words 2/27/07
“Need sells.”
(Norwegian Proverb) That’s how I like them…short and to the point. I like sermons that way, too. Here’s another. “Trust God, but tie up your mule.” (Belgian Proverb) It’s just common sense. God knows something about locking things up, otherwise he wouldn’t have made the keys of the kingdom. ;-) Jack

FROM G.S.: Peter Drucker: "People give (money) to results."

FROM J.H. IN MAUMEE: I like things short and sweet too... which reminds me of a story we probably told you long ago... but worth re-telling. Just after college when Jeanne and I went to visit David in California, we when to LA and went to a game show. While at the game show... they reminded the audience it was live taping, so we could NOT shout out the answers. Jeanne kept teasing me and calling me a "know it all" saying I wouldn't be able to resist yelling out the answers. I assured her I would not. WELL... as the story goes, one of the questions was "what is the shortest verses in the bible"... and of course JEANNE YELLS OUT "Jesus Wept"! I love to remind her of this story... and I will never, ever forget the shortest verse.

FROM S.M. IN SUNNY FLA: Just a note to let you know how much I am enjoying your proverbs, especially the Belgian one. One of my cousins is secretary of the Belgian Cultural Center in Moline and I have joined and learned a lot from the newsletter. Also we have gotten into my swedish grandparents because a friend of my daughter in Orlando is here for two years with her husband and daughters. She has gotten into the Swedish migration from New York to Minneapolis, and they took the trip last summer. I am plodding through Letters from the Promised Land Swedes in America, 1840-l914 H Arnold Barton, editor, and learning a lot that I never knew before.

FROM B.G. IN MI: Ironically timely, Jack. A lap top and eight microphones were stolen from our sanctuary Saturday afternoon around 3 p.m. We have it on tape. The doors of the church happened to be open for a birthday party in the family center and I had just happened to set up the lap top and the powerpoint projector for Sunday’s sermon. I hate to think that we need to keep the doors locked all the time, but who knows? After all, aren’t we supposed to trust God, BUT TIE UP OUR MULE?!? J

Monday, February 26, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/26/07
“A guest sees more in an hour than a host in a year.”
(Polish Proverb) What does a stranger see in your home and in your life? Are there some things that need cleaning up? “Either eat this soup or jump out this window.” (Italian Proverb) In other words, Mama is saying, “Eat your soup!” Did (Do) you have a mom like that? I really smiled at this proverb. ;-) Jack

FROM G.L.: I think that a "fresh set of eyes" is good. There's plenty of cleaning up for me to do in both those areas, it's ongoing .. isn't it? As for the Italian mother --- Sounds like she was making her children an "offer they couldn't refuse". My mom had a different approach but she did LOVE soup and taught us to love it too! Pea soup and potato soup come to mind.

FROM C.H. ON CAPE COD: The first proverb makes me think of people visiting our churches. What do they see? Also, sometimes the guest or stranger not only sees our hospitality or lack thereof – sometimes they recognize God’s presence or movement in our midst more clearly.

FROM L.K. IN OH: Very much so. Mom was a benevolent despot. I loved her.


Friday, February 23, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/23/07
“A word before is worth two behind.”
(Scotch Proverb) This proverb reminds us to THINK before we speak. Speaking of “behind,” here’s a good one: “There’s no use crying when the crap is already in your pants.” (Finnish Proverb) Those Finns have a way of telling it like it is. Is it better than saying, Don’t cry over spilled milk? ;-) Jack

FROM L.K. IN OH: Hooray for the Finns and Scots! Some babies, even a few adults I know, actually LIKE to have crap in their pants,ha! But they don't cry over spilled milk, either!

FROM THE L. GIRLS IN ILL: This is SO funny. Mary and I were laughing about the fact that we know about 7 words in Finnish and two of them are crap and pants (in that order...used as a noun/not a verb !) We obviously did not attend the early service, spoken in Finnish, with my Grandma at St.Paul's Lutheran Church in Ironwood,Michigan.

FROM C.J.L. IN OHIO: Of's Scandinavian!!!!!!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/22/07
“God is good, but never dance in a small boat.”
(Irish Proverb) In other words, don’t expect God to bail us out when we don’t use common sense. Speaking of sense…”We’re not here to make dollars; we’re here to make sense.” (Heinz 57 Proverb…a mixture of backgrounds) There are some things more important than money in this life. Like the Bible says: “Lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth.” Do that which is sensible and helpful to others. Do you have a favorite charity? ;-) Jack

FROM M.L. IN ILL: i like habitat, friends of the quilt, planned parenthood, local food pantries and homeless shelters. it's a combination of education and primary comforts. everyone is entitled to the basics, especially in our wealthy country. god bless the child who has his/her own.

FROM S.H. IN MI: This and Church World Service/CROPWALK are my favorite charities. I wonder how many people in the U.S.A. realize that the people living in the rural areas of our country are somehow facing many of the same problems of people living in the rural areas of countries overseas. And a lot of people are being impoverished.

FROM L.K. IN OH: God is good; we are good, too, but mistake prone

FROM M.S. IN MICH: Salvation Army, Disabled American Vetrains, Furniture Bank(Pontiac) Homeless ??? (Pontiac)ect.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/21/07
We continue looking at ethnic proverbs.
“He who is afraid to ask is ashamed of learning.” (Danish Proverb) See if you can learn something today. “A donkey’s lips do not fit onto a horse’s mouth.” (Chinese Proverb) Now, what do you think this one means? Each proverb in this series relates to someone who receives WWs. ;-) Jack
Jack’s Winning Words 2/21/07
We continue looking at ethnic proverbs.
“He who is afraid to ask is ashamed of learning.” (Danish Proverb) See if you can learn something today. “A donkey’s lips do not fit onto a horse’s mouth.” (Chinese Proverb) Now, what do you think this one means? Each proverb in this series relates to someone who receives WWs. ;-) Jack

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/20/07
“Charity sees the need, not the cause.”
(German Proverb) Some people have a knack for creating excuses not to give to the needy. The Marshall Plan was one of the bright spots in our nation’s history. BTW, I have a good supply of ethnic proverbs. Tomorrow, I may include more than one. Here are some of your responses: Norwegian, Polish, Irish, Finnish, Danish, English, Scotch, Chinese Japanese, Lebanese, Heinz 57. Let me know your background. ;-) Jack

FROM A PASTOR ON CAPE COD: You need both – people who see the need and the cause.
Charity sees the need and provides people with fish. Those who see the cause will teach them how to fish.

FROM B.S. IN FLORIDA: The Marshall Plan was brilliant. It really proved it's point, no more wars between France and GErmany. It's too bad Mr Marshall or someone of his caliber isn't with us today to help solve some of the senseless fighting going on in our world today.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/19/07
“Fear less, hope more. Eat less, chew more. Whine less, breathe more. Talk less, say more. Love more, and all good things will be yours.”
(Swedish Proverb) I’m half Swedish on my father’s side. The Swedes have some pretty good sayings, but so do other ethnic groups. I’ll be doing German tomorrow. What’s your background? ;-) Jack

Friday, February 16, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/16/07
“Once it’s conceivable, it’s achievable. Don’t give up.”
(Unknown) We can make this a better world. It takes time, effort and a willingness to invest our money. What we need now are people who see the vision and do something about it. How would you go about making this a better world? What’s your idea? ;-) Jack

FROM L.K. IN OHIO: Stop being so cynical for one......

FROM A JUDGE IN MICH: First, to paraphrase a very famous 15th or 16th century writer, we kill all the politicians

FROM GOOD DEBT JON IN OHIO: Napoleon Hill, 1937; “Anything the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve.” Likely source.
Napoleon Hill 1883 -1979 was an American author who was one of the earliest producers of the modern genre of personal success literature. His most famous work, Think and Grow Rich, is one of the best-selling books of all time. In America, Hill stated in his writings, people are free to believe what they want to believe, and this is what sets the United States apart from all other countries in the world. Hill's works examined the power of personal beliefs, and the role they play in personal success. "What the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve" is one of Hill's hallmark expressions. How achievement actually occurs, and a formula for it that puts success in reach for the average person, were the promise of Hill's books.
Hill called his success teachings "The Philosophy of Achievement" and he considered freedom, democracy, capitalism, and harmony to be important contributing elements. For without these, Hill demonstrated throughout his writings, personal beliefs are not possible. He contrasted his philosophy with others, and thought Achievement was superior and responsible for the success Americans enjoyed for the better part of two centuries. Fear and selfishness had no part to play in his philosophy, and Hill considered them to be the source of failure for unsuccessful people.
The secret of Achievement was tantalizingly offered to readers of Think and Grow Rich, and was never named directly as Hill felt discovering it for themselves would provide readers with the most benefit. Hill presented the idea of a "Definite Major Purpose" as a challenge to his readers, to make them ask of themselves "in what do you truly believe?". For according to Hill, 98% of people had no firm beliefs, putting true success firmly out of reach. Hill's numerous books have sold millions of copies, proving that the secret of Achievement is still highly sought-after by modern Americans. Hill dealt with many controversial subjects through his writings including racism, slavery, oppression, failure, revolution, war and poverty. Persevering and then succeeding in spite of these obstacles using the philosophy of Achievement, Hill stated, was the responsibility of every American. Though Hill was more famous, Orison Swett Marden, began the early success literature. 1850-1924.

FROM B.S. IN FLORIDA: I think the answer is education, whether it is at the kitchen table as my Ma taught the entire family, or in Sunday School, or in the schools, public or private. Education,as early as possible, and as intense as possible, using the brightest teachers possible, and especially teachers who have a burning in their gut to get their students to understand and want to understand. I had a physics teacher, oh yes and a math teacher, ya sure many other teachers, Miss ?, damn I can't think of their names, But Mr Ward, and Doc. ? shucks, how can I forget these people, wow, darn it all, I never, ever thought I wouldn't remember their names or I would have tatooted their names on my arms. O.Dr. Winnans was our physics teacher, Dr James Ward was our math teacher, Mz Creswell also. Oh,oh, Mz Keating also. I coulc go on all nite. These people were so precious.Wow

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/15/07
“Humor is a way of saying something serious.”
(T.S. Eliot) I see that Al Franken is planning to run for the U.S. Senate from Minnesota. If that state can have Jesse as governor, they can surely have Al as senator. Do you have a favorite comedian? Mark Twain had a knack for saying serious things in humorous ways. ;-) Jack

FROM T.L. IN ILLINOIS: "Man is the only animal that has the true religion....several of them".
Mark Twain

FROM L.K. IN OHIO: Why, then, all the posturing? Vanity......."all the world's a stage,etc.......and we are merely players (actors)???

FROM G.S.: Jack Benny & Red Skelton come to mind - they never told off color jokes.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/14/07
“A bell is no bell ‘til you ring it. A song is no song ‘til you sing it. And love in your heart Wasn’t put there to stay – Love isn’t love ‘til you give it away."
(Oscar Hammerstein) Do you know the musical where these words are found? What a perfect way to celebrate Valentine’s Day – to give love away. Maybe you also might want to ring a bell or sing a song. Happy Valentine’s Day to YOU!!! ;-) Jack

FROM B.S. IN FLORIDA: Oscar Hammerstine had a real talent. I must confess I don't remember the musical.We are going to a partial musical next Sat. I think. The Music Man. We really like to see,hear it. Especially when Miriam the Libriam sings to, shucks , what's his name, I can see him in my minds eye. Merideth Wilson had real talent. I often wondered if any of these fabulous musical people had any children in whom the genes were passed on?

FROM M.L. IN ILLINOIS: thanks. this is the story that i base mine on. you would love to hear the embellishments of the pre-school clan. i ask them about love, war, marriage, family, ect. one of the best comments this year was from little sarah. she stated, "i would get my dad and we would tell that mean ruler what is right!". children are the best of moral compasses.


FROM J.M. IN COLORADO: I recognize it but can't place it -- my Rogers & Hammerstein is limited to South Pacific and Sound of Music, with a little Oklahoma! Have a loving Valentine's Day -- here we've been hanging paper hearts around the kitchen all week with words about what we each love about eachother. It's been fun and brought lots of smiles

FROM GOOD DEBT JON IN OHIO: Ah yes, one of the first songs about Potential versus Kinetic Energy

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/13/07
“We can learn much from wise words, little from wise cracks, and less from wise guys.”
(William Arthur Ward) The problem here is in the definition of wise. In slang, it can mean:: “Rude, disrespectful and impudent.” Another definition: “Having the ability to discern or judge what it true and right,” can be used in the quote and make sense in each of the three uses of wise. I once heard of a Sunday School boy who referred to the Magi in the Christmas Story as The Three Wise Guys. ;-) Jack

FROM JIM IN NOVA SCOTIA: I had a colleague in PA who is Zoroastrian and at my request was kind enough to tell me something about it over lunch. Dunno anymore if he was the one who told me the Three Wise Men were thought to be Zoroastrians. The Zoroastrians are also mentioned in the Koran and along with Muslims, Jews and Christians are referred to as the "four people of the book", so worshipers of the same God.

FROM REV. JOHN IN MICHIGAN: I think that the biblical understanding of "wisdom" is to be "In tune with God." It is like standing next to a terrific singer in church. Their singing tends to bring you along and help you to be in tune also. We need to hear God and be overwhelmed by His "in tune ness" and be brought closer to pitch ourselves.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/12/07
“You know, my faith is one that admits some doubt.”
(Barack Obama) I’m reminded of the story in the Bible where a father brings his son to Jesus for healing. Jesus says: “All things are possible to the one who believes. Do you believe?” The father replies, “I believe, help my unbelief,” and his son is healed. I’m generally suspicious of those people who seem to have all of the answers about God. ;-) Jack

FROM A JUDGE IN MICHIGAN: AS well we shoud all be.

FROM FRIEND, D.S.: Jack, one of MY favorite sayings from the Apostle Paul, "Lord, help me with my disbelief". Sometimes I feel like I am too analytical but I have a problem with just "blindly believing". The book that I read recently, "Dinner with a PerfectStranger" by David Gregory was especially meaningful to me and answered some main questions that I have had and has made a profound change in me.

FROM TOM L: "Heresy is only another word for freedom of thought". Graham Greene

FROM L.K. IN OHIO: I think sensing God leads to asking about God, not necessarily the reverse. Faith precedes the miracle of begets faith......?????

MORE FROM L.K: Whenever I've had really tough times in life, it came when I was not searching.

FROM REV. JOHN IN MICH: Does that make you suspicious of Jesus? Interesting. There is a message there somewhere...

FROM C.H. ON CAPE COD: I have always wondered whether “doubting Thomas” in fact, truly knew, more so than any of the others, that if this was really true (Resurrection) then NOTHING WAS THE SAME. He knew the stakes were big. So instead of accepting at face value what he was told, he had to doubt, he had to be certain… His doubt was the door that opened the way to a faith experience that gave him certainty!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/9/07
“All appears to change when we change.”
(Amiel) I’m trying to recall when a change happened in my life. Probably at age 16. No, I think that we are continually changing as the circumstances of life change. And that’s what makes it all so interesting. ;-) Jack

FROM A PASTOR IN MICHIGAN: I agree with you. The challenge, it seems to me, is try to hold a community together as people change at different speeds, in different ways.
I guess you and I would call the glue the Holy Spirit. She has a big job, doesn't she? Or, is it he?

FROM DR. JOHN IN MICHIGAN: Heraclitus...Life is like a river....never stand in the same water twice

FROM G.S.: Paul says we're never done growing in Christ. (Boy, doesn't THAT sound religious!)

FROM F.M. IN BAMA: Change and decay in all about I see, O thou who changest not, abide with me~!

FROM B.S IN FL: I am certain you are correct. As our attitude, our experience, our knowledge about any subject changes, we certainly change. Now, how about understanding women??? especially one from Merrill.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/8/07
“A pound of pluck is worth a ton of luck.”
(James A. Garfield) I guess the word, pluck, was used commonly in Garfield’s day. I like it. It means: doughtiness, gameness, intrepidity, mettle and spunk. Do you remember when Mr. Grant said to Mary Richards: “You’ve got spunk. I like spunk?” Try to use pluck or spunk in a sentence today. ;-) Jack

FROM J.S. IN MICHIGAN: We have renamed our Saturday program for kids,
"Saturday Spunk". My suggestion. :)


FROM J.T. IN MICHIGAN: I think that along with eleven other people I had spunk when we showed up for 8:30 am water aerobics last Monday. It was great! Unfortunately my eldest daughter that we were totally irresponsible for going out in the cold weather. I wonder how she'll see it when she's in her 70's and 80's.

FROM F.M. IN BAMA: OK - it is going to take spunk and pluck for me to go for a stroll through the Bon Secour Bird sanctuary today - but it is a day that shouldn't[to be wasted, sitting at a computer!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/7/07
“Joy, temperance and repose slam the door on the doctor’s nose.”
(Longfellow) A happy disposition, moderation in all things and a nap once in a while lead to a healthy life. At least that’s what HWL believed, and that was 100 years ago. How many of these three suggestions are part of your regimen? ;-) Jack

FROM S.H. IN MICH: Dr. MacMaster, 30 years ago, advised getting good exercise (helps one to sleep/nap better) and, especially when one is going through a troublesome time, to aim to stick around positive-thinking people. I have found that helps a person to get their happy disposition back and I also try to be a positive-thinking person when I see some other person is going through a troublesome time. Yep, joy, temperance and repose is a good regimen.

ANOTHER VIEW FROM G.S.: I like the 15 minute nap @midday. Actually, vigorous exercise and Bible study works best for me.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/6/07
“A throne is only a bench covered with velvet.”
(Napoleon) Isn’t this a truly descriptive quote? I can think of many situations where it applies. The Emperor’s New Clothes comes to mind. In church, the altar is a table. The Oval Office is a room. I wonder what was in the mind of Napoleon. ;-) Jack.


FROM PREACHER JOHN IN MI: Yes, but the altar is a table that is consecrated to the use of our Lord...that makes it a Holy Altar and a very special table...

FROM L. K. IN OHIO: He could have said it is merely a place where one can undertake a fundamental bodily function,ha!

FROM C.H. ON CAPE COD: But that bench covered with velvet impacts many lives – sometimes for better and sometimes for worse.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/5/07
“ Let parents bequeath to their children not riches, but the spirit of reverence.”
(Plato) Where did you learn reverence, and what does the word mean to you? This quote also reminds me of these words: “Virtue is learned at mother’s knee. Vice is learned at other joints.” ;-) Jack

Friday, February 02, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/2/07
“Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you.”
(Maori Proverb) This is a good one for Groundhog Day. It reminds me of these words in The Optimist Creed: Look at the sunnyside of everything and make your optimism come true. Give it a try!
And for the Super Bowl crowd: “A good coach will make his players see what they can be, rather than what they are.” (Ara P.) Who are you picking…Tony or Lovie?
;-) Jack

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Jack’s Winning Words 2/1/07
“Every path may lead you to G-d, even the weird ones. The way is foggy much of the time. I suggest you slow down and follow some of the side roads that appear suddenly in the midst.”
(Real Live Preacher) This has been my experience. Some of my best life journeys have been on paths I ordinarily wouldn’t have chosen. Has it happened that way for you? ;-) Jack

FROM MARY L. IN ILLINOIS: spiritually and physically i seem to choose the road less travelled. it has lead me to my most poignant and revealing life experiences. i have learned to trust my heart's compass.

FROM JIM IN NOVA SCOTIA: In other words, when we come to a fork in the road, we should
follow Yogi Bera's advice? FOLLOW UP: Is it really "in the midst" or "in the mist" (as in gorillas)?

FROM S.H. IN MICHIGAN: Talking about weird paths and fog and side roads and your saying some of your best life journeys have been on paths you wouldn't ordinarily have chosen. When I was in high school I was so busy with academics and driving a car was down on the list of what I thought would be fun so, time being limited like that, I and my Dad took the option of him teaching me how to drive instead of me taking drivers ed. One time I drove through a ditch. Anyway I did get my drivers license but then Dad, being old-fashioned didn't actually offer me the car to drive.

FROM B.S. IN FLORIDA: Hi, no I get diverted from the real goal, especially when time is of essence, when I take a side road, but then if one is a researcher, taking a different path may lead to a new discovery, so we have two sides of a coin. both can be beautiful, should you take a chance? At my age taking chances can: break a leg? so shouldn't we place it safe. Older people have less accidents, because they play it safe?
Jack’s Winning Words 2/1/07
“Every path may lead you to G-d, even the weird ones. The way is foggy much of the time. I suggest you slow down and follow some of the side roads that appear suddenly in the midst.”
(Real Live Preacher) This has been my experience. Some of my best life journeys have been on paths I ordinarily wouldn’t have chosen. Has it happened that way for you? ;-) Jack