Down With Christmas

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Finishing strong for 2016

By Dr. John Ed Mathison
Executive Director
John Ed Mathison Leadership Ministries

Doug Amos is a recognized sports leader in the River Region.  He works with the athletic program at Troy and formerly worked with Faulkner.  He hosts a two-hour sports talk show every day.

He recently created a new hour-long radio program entitled “Strong to the Finish” that airs at 7:00 pm on Wednesday nights at 97.5 FM and 101.5 FMjohn ed and re-airs at8:00 am on Sunday mornings at 97.5 FM and 101.5 FM and on ESPN The Ticket. The byline is “Balancing passion for God with love for Sports.”  My friend Jere Beasley sponsors the program.  I was recently Doug’s guest on his program on November 30.  You can listen to this program on https://soundcloud.com/strongt othefinish (or just Google “Doug Amos Strong to the Finish”).

Strong to the finish – I like that title.  We are now winding down 2016.  All of us set some goals and made some resolutions at the first of this year.  Are we completing them?  We don’t have much time left – will we be strong to the finish, or will we be distracted or settle for something less than what we ought to accomplish?

The Guinness World Records recently designated Israel Kristal as the world’s oldest man at age 113.  He was born in Poland and missed his bar mitzvah – his Jewish coming-of-age ceremony – because World War I was raging when he turned 13.  At age 113, his family, who were Auschwitz survivors, decided it was time to hold this long-overdue bar mitzvah.  His children, grandchildren, and 30 great-grandchildren attended

Israel had a goal, it was interrupted by the circumstances of life, but he never gave up.  I am sure he is the oldest Jewish “boy” to celebrate his bar mitzvah.  He was strong to the finish.

Turia Pitt is an avid physical fitness person.  About 5 years ago, this Australian mining engineer was caught in a brush fire during an outback ultra marathon.  She suffered burns to 65 percent of her body, and she spent 864 days in the hospital.  She had over 200 operations.  She lost the use of 7 of her fingers.

But being a physical fitness fanatic, she set a goal to compete in an Iron Man contest.  Doctors didn’t think she would ever walk again, much less be able to compete, but she had a goal.  She wanted to be strong to the finish.

She recently completed the prestigious Ironman World Championship in Hawaii. She swam 2.4 miles, cycled 112 miles, and ran 26.2 miles.  She finished in 14 hours37 minutes and 30 seconds.  She said she was “really bloody proud!”  She had a goal, and she was determined to finish it.  She did.  She was strong to the finish.

A little girl went with her father through the slums of Chicago.  She saw poor children.  She said, “One day I am going to build a house among the poor people so the little children can play in my yard.”  The little girl suffered from spinal curvature which caused tremendous pain.  She went to medical school but had to drop out because of poor health.  She took courses in social service, and finally was able to secure a house in the slums of Chicago.  She had a dream.  She opened her door to the poor and needy of every race and creed.  She later received the Nobel Prize for Peace.

Her name was Jane Addams, and the Hull House in Chicago put her name in immortality.  She was always faithful to that dream.  She was determined to finish strong.

The Bible says that “finishing is better than starting . . .” (Eccl. 7:8).  At the end of his life, Paul wrote to Timothy, “I fought a good fight, I have finished my course.  I have kept the faith.”  He was strong to the finish.

What do you need to finish in 2016?  It’s easy to make excuses or be distracted. Will that keep you from finishing strong?  Is what you settle for worth it?  My dad used to say “If you don’t finish it now, when will you have time to finish it later?”

Be strong to the finish!

John Ed’s blog posts appear in For His Glory each week.1

Contact: JAM Executive Suite 4,4131 Carmichael Road, Montgomery, AL 36106 Phone: 334-270-2149 Email:info@johnedmathison.org
1Listen to John Ed Mathison's one-minute daily devotional on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/johned.mathison/ and click “PLAY" on the audio YouTube in order to listen.  Or you can go to his ministry page at  https://www.facebook.com/JohnEdMathisonLeadershipMinistries/

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Suze shares her story of another Cry Baby generation job applicant. She wrote this after reading my post, Cry baby job interview on the Blogging Meetup website.

 

I have had a few “Mr Zirkles” apply for work when I had my own business. It simply amazes me that some new to the workforce are so incredibly stupid when it comes to a job interview. I once had a person ask me, before I barely had time to ask them to please sit down if the “lunch hour is really an hour and not some arbitrary time period less than an hour” . when I asked why he needed to know he said “because I take a 45 minute nap after i eat”. he didn’t get the job.

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53 years ago today I was coming out of English class in Shenandoah High School. My classmate and dear Catholic friend Ann Lund came rushing into my arms crying, “Oh, Steve, the president’s been shot. The president’s been shot”. I was shocked and confused as were my classmates who heard Ann’s cry.

We would soon learn from school officials that John F. Kennedy had beeb shot during a motorcade in Dallas, Texas just after 1:00.  The rest of the school day was mass confusion, questions and rumors.  We didn’t have TV at school, so all we could rely on was news we heard on the radio.

It is one of those days etched in our minds we never forget.  Like December 7, 1941 September 11, 2001, July 20, 1969, and January 1, 2000, Y2K.

The events on those dates changed our way of life forever. Regardless of the things that occurred on those days, one thing will never change–God’s love for His children and the eterbal hope we have that one day, regardless of world events, we will live carefree and full of joy with our Father forever.

“Behold, I an with you always.” Matthew 28:20

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8:

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