Archive for March, 2011

It has been a good weekend, thus far, in several ways.

Friday night was “Rwanda Night” in the OC auditorium. Lots of culture, celebration, and sharing was in order.

Saturday night, in the very same room, several churches with predominately African American membership came together with MRCC and others for a “unity in praise night”. There was a great turnout.

Admittedly, the evening felt like it got off to a slow start, but it made the ending that much better. One of the vocal groups from the beginning time scheduled did not show up, so the final group (from Eastside Church of Christ in OKC) was “tasked” with adding an extra, unrehearsed, number to their performance.

They did a great job, as did everyone from the evening, but instead of simply adding a song, the director from Eastside invited every group to join them on stage, and they then taught and led all of us through a song that went something like the following (with some admitted misremembered words):

I’m glad I know you
I’m glad you know me
We worship our God
We”re one big family
We lift up our hands
To reach the sky

While the following video clip is not connected, maybe it will give you a little taste of what the song sounded like when sung together by a huge group. It was a good night. We need to get together like that more often.

It is a pretty good weekend, all things considered, and it is not over yet…


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“Don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes” is a famous quote from the Revolutionary War. And it got me to thinking…

We have been studying I Timothy in Bible class on Sunday mornings. This past week, the discussion centered on how things are different in our large churches today, versus the smaller house churches that Christians were a part of 2,000 years ago, and how they communicated, shared, and learned to get along. Then the thought occurred to me: in “the worship assembly” they were probably looking at each other’s faces, not the back of the heads of those sitting in front of them. They could see the whites of each other’s eyes…

1 Timothy 2

Instructions about Worship

 1 I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. 2 Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. 3 This is good and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. 5 For there is only one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus. 6 He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time. 7 And I have been chosen as a preacher and apostle to teach the Gentiles this message about faith and truth. I’m not exaggerating—just telling the truth.

 8 In every place of worship, I want men to pray with holy hands lifted up to God, free from anger and controversy.

So what’s the point for me today? It is probably easier for me to avoid anger and controversy with people I get to know, not just the people I see sitting in front of me.

“Don’t fire till you see the whites of their eyes”, if you have to even fire at all…

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Sean Connery, (the almost original Bond, James Bond), once said “never again” in regards to the question of playing said character in another movie.

Live, Love, Laugh and Be Happy Now is a song our kids used to sing in preschool at church. Seeing my daughter’s luggage tag shown here reminded me of that.

“You never laugh anymore”. “You seldom smile”. The litany of former indictments against yours truly could continue. I have applied myself in recent months to combating said indictments and learning to have fun, hopefully each and every day.

So, my mission continues. May you never, or seldom ever, hear such words uttered in my regard. You see, I’m Bing. Jeffrey Bing.

(insert music and mental image of me firing a nerf gun here).

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This shared quote is something I read in an article attributed to someone named Charles Taliaferro, who is said to be a philosopher.

Attribution aside, the statement stands on it’s own merits.

Simple statement, simple post for the day, profound meaning and purpose to remember…

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It is a good thing that “Bing…” is a non commercial blog, because I’m probably violating numerous copyright laws by sharing the following piece in its entirety, but I want this blog to bless my kids and others, and the thoughts are too important to not share. Thank you, Mr. Boxx.

By: Rick Boxx

The days of unwavering commitment – to one company or to one spouse – seem to be all but gone. Today, people change jobs frequently, for good reason or very little reason at all. Maybe they are looking for a change of responsibilities, or a few dollars more in their paycheck, or the grass just seems greener somewhere else. For whatever reason, loyalty to employers apparently has gone the way of the dinosaur and the dodo bird. The same is true, sadly, for many marriages. Long-term, stable marriages are a testimony to a couple’s devotion and dedication to one another, but today it seems the wedding vows should read, “until divorce do us part.”

This, however, was not the case for my father. After completing a stint in the military, he started a career with General Motors when he was 23 years old.  He was still there the day GM decided to close the plant 29 years later. Even after that, he has faithfully continued to support and promote General Motors products.

As for his wife, he married my mother when he was 19. This year we celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, an amazing feat by today’s standards. When my brother-in-law asked him about the secret to success in his marriage, my father’s reply was simple yet profound: “Just hang in there.”

Commitment in any pursuit is a noble quality rarely found in our culture. Divorce rates, bankruptcy, parental failures and job turnover are all symptoms of the real problem: lack of personal commitment. Of course, at least at the business level, we also see a lack of commitment on the part of companies toward their employees. So in that respect, reduced commitment by employees is sometimes a response to corporate disloyalty.

The fact remains: Today when times get rocky in one’s marriage, the prevailing attitude is that “no-fault divorce” wipes the slate clean. If we manage our money poorly, bankruptcy relieves the pressure and pain. If we make a mistake and get pregnant, we can opt for an abortion that allows us to eliminate any sign of the problem. In the workplace, if times get tough, we quit; conversely, if the company faces adversity, one solution is to get rid of us. 

In reality, these and similar actions may relieve the pain temporarily, but they come at great cost – to the community and to ourselves personally. We have built a culture largely devoid of character, because of our desire to eliminate the problem, rather than exerting the effort to remain committed and persevering to overcome trials. 

Most leaders are desperate for people with commitment. To become a strong, effective leader, commitment is essential. In our workplaces, those of us in leadership roles have an obligation to model integrity by rewarding commitment and perseverance. If we find ourselves in jobs that sometimes become dull or tiresome, we need to persevere, showing that we have the commitment to fulfill our duties, even if they become unpleasant. 

By cultivating and demonstrating more commitment, loyalty and perseverance, we build on the noble foundation that men like my father modeled, and become a true business community again, people who truly care for each other and their companies, rather than wage-earners eager to abandon their posts at the first enticing opportunity. Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away” (John 10:11-12). In other words, only a good leader stays true to his mission, regardless of cost or opposition.

(Copyright 2006, Integrity Resource Center, Inc.) Adapted with permission from “Integrity Moments with Rick Boxx,” a commentary on issues of integrity in the workplace from a Christian perspective.

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We had a tough lesson topic during the evening church service earlier this week: “inappropriate online viewing behaviors” is probably the most polite way to characterize the topic in this family friendly space.

One of the main points was that of accountability for one’s behaviors, and specifically having someone to hold yourself accountable to, aside from God.    So, on the way home, I took the bold step of proclaiming to my kids “I don’t smoke, and I don’t chew, and I don’t look at naughty pictures of them that do (or of them that don’t, as well).     Just my own little effort at keepin’ it real, as is this blog history for the potential future generation.

In the spirit of fully clothed full disclosure, I do have a problem with moderation when it comes to Heath candy bars (love that English Toffee!), popsicles, rainbow sherbert, and clothes sold by guys named JosA.    Just keeping it real…

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A friend and coworker recently was visiting with us about the wisdom and value of preparing, even at the risk of “over preparing”, when planting new trees, shrubs etc.

After digging the hole, filling it with loosely packed rich nutrients is they key, especially when the basic soil is tough and unforgiving.

His point? If your under prepare, the plant will suffer, be stunted in it’s growth, and possibly even die. If you prepare “more than adequately”, you are setting the stage for a strong start, and a lifetime of healthy growth and success.

And it got me to thinking: what works for plants also works for projects, and for people.

Proverbs 22

 1 Choose a good reputation over great riches;
      being held in high esteem is better than silver or gold.

 2 The rich and poor have this in common:
      The Lord made them both.

 3 A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions.
      The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.

 4 True humility and fear of the Lord
      lead to riches, honor, and long life.

 5 Corrupt people walk a thorny, treacherous road;
      whoever values life will avoid it.

 6 Direct your children onto the right path,
      and when they are older, they will not leave it.

 7 Just as the rich rule the poor,
      so the borrower is servant to the lender.

 8 Those who plant injustice will harvest disaster,
      and their reign of terror will come to an end.[a]

 9 Blessed are those who are generous,
      because they feed the poor.

 10 Throw out the mocker, and fighting goes, too.
      Quarrels and insults will disappear.

 11 Whoever loves a pure heart and gracious speech
      will have the king as a friend.

 12 The Lord preserves those with knowledge,
      but he ruins the plans of the treacherous.

 13 The lazy person claims, “There’s a lion out there!
      If I go outside, I might be killed!”

 14 The mouth of an immoral woman is a dangerous trap;
      those who make the Lord angry will fall into it.

 15 A youngster’s heart is filled with foolishness,
      but physical discipline will drive it far away.

 16 A person who gets ahead by oppressing the poor
      or by showering gifts on the rich will end in poverty.

 17 Listen to the words of the wise;
      apply your heart to my instruction.
 18 For it is good to keep these sayings in your heart
      and always ready on your lips.
 19 I am teaching you today—yes, you—
      so you will trust in the Lord.
 20 I have written thirty sayings[b] for you,
      filled with advice and knowledge.
 21 In this way, you may know the truth
      and take an accurate report to those who sent you.
 22 Don’t rob the poor just because you can,
      or exploit the needy in court.
 23 For the Lord is their defender.
      He will ruin anyone who ruins them.

 24 Don’t befriend angry people
      or associate with hot-tempered people,
 25 or you will learn to be like them
      and endanger your soul.

 26 Don’t agree to guarantee another person’s debt
      or put up security for someone else.
 27 If you can’t pay it,
      even your bed will be snatched from under you.

 28 Don’t cheat your neighbor by moving the ancient boundary markers
      set up by previous generations.

 29 Do you see any truly competent workers?
      They will serve kings
      rather than working for ordinary people.

So, I guess the point for the day is “if you are going to dig yourself into a hole, spread plenty of manure (i.e., “rich nutrients”); you never know what might sprout up and grow…

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