Category Archives: Uncategorized

Try Once More to Climb Mt Adams

Certain things I can dismiss out of my thinking, in fact, a lot of things. I decide I am not going to think about it anymore, and if it pops into my head, I consciously choose to think about something else. It usually only takes a couple of times of doing that, and it is gone. It is a good discipline to have so that I don’t fret about things. Sometimes some issues resist all my best efforts to dismiss or control, and this goal of successfully climbing to the top of Mt Adams is one; it is bugging the heck out of me! I am not sure if it is my pride or the intense desire that I have programmed into my head over the years not to be a wimp or allow myself to make excuses when I don’t accomplish a hard goal. Whatever is motivating me, when a thought persists despite my best efforts to bury it, I usually go with it, so I am making the commitment and goal to climb to the top of Mt Adams in 2021. If anyone wants to do it with me, let me know, and you can be part of planning the ascent.

In life, as we pursue goals that have a potential for a significant impact on other people’s lives or are noble in regards to God’s plan, failure is common because of the difficulty factor in such goals. The key thing when failure happens is to evaluate what the barriers were and then to adjust and compensate, and remake the goal with those changes built into the strategy of accomplishing it. Adapting to the obstacles, mountains, and unknown problems that regularly pop up into our life is what ”Overcomers” do, that is what ”winners” do, that is what high achievers do.

I regularly hear people say, ”Well, I guess God closed that door in my life”, when difficult things happen in pursuit of a dream in their life. God will occasionally shut a door as a way of guiding us into His will, but most often He opens doors as His guiding method. The bigger the dream, the nobler the goal, the more difficulties there will be, that is a law of life. Our awareness of that law is what keeps many from pursuing big goals and dreams, they don’t normally choose to do things that are guaranteed to bring problems into their life, and that choosing to enter the broad and easy door keeps many people poor in real and significant accomplishments in their life. Some day they will stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ and receive very few rewards from the Lord for the life they have lived.

So, I have mentally gone over every reason that I can think of for not accomplishing my goal of climbing to the top of Mt Adams, and I have established a plan and strategy to compensate for those reasons. If I fail to summit Mt Adams next year, it will probably be because I did a poor job of following my plan and strategy for success. Still, my level of motivation to succeed is high enough, I think, to overcome my natural apathy and laziness regarding the physical conditioning that I will need to do. We will see.

Failed again

Friday three other guys joined me and we drove up to the starting point of climbing Mt Adams and we climbed it up to the 10,000 ft level carrying fairly heavy packs on our backs with tents, sleeping bags, and food. We pitched our tents and slept on the mountain last night and got up very early this morning to climb the remaining 3,000 feet to the top of the mountain. The other three guys with me all made it to the top, but I did not. About a 1,000 feet from the top I simply ran out of gas. On the ride home I began thinking of things to do and change so that I could make it next year. I heard that some old guys use little oxygen bottles to help out at the high altitudes where lack of oxygen is certainly an issue, I could try that. I could do some running in training for the climb instead of just bicycle riding. I could buy a super lightweight tent and sleeping bag so my pack wouldn’t be as heavy. I could plan on staying two nights on the mountain instead of just one, because the decision to turn around before reaching the top was influenced by the thought that I still had to take down my tent, pack my back pack and carry it off of the mountain. Then a thought popped into my mind, “is all that really worth getting to the top of Mt Adams one more time?” “Maybe you should just rejoice over the times you have made it to the top and consider that a chapter in your life that has passed.” Taking risks and doing hard things has been one of the goals of my life, but not just for the sake of saying I did a hard thing, but for the purpose of accomplishing something worthwhile while accomplishing the hard thing. The main goal of climbing Mt Adams in the past was to do something that required a great deal of will power to accomplish. Many of the barriers to summiting Adams are mental so overcoming and conquering those mental barriers was great training to accomplishing other things with my life that had very eternal significance. One of the things I need to consider as I contemplate retiring from climbing Mt Adams is the bad habit that many have of justifying and excusing failures of accomplishing something that is hard and difficult. I don’t want to do that. There certainly is wisdom required to being balanced in life as choices are made. Another added component is that I will be another year older and another year wimpier. I am going to start writing my goals for next year in a couple of months, we will see what happens.

So Much False News and Information

I wrote in my blog yesterday that if you had enough wisdom you would have a powerful sense of discernment and you would know when something you hear or read is off base. It is becoming increasingly important that those who follow Jesus have great wisdom. Her is a short excerpt form a book I am reading ”The Manipulators: Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Big Tech’s War on Conservatives” by Peter Hasson.

Facebook wields enormous power over its users and has no qualms about exercising it. The tech giant collaborated with academics from Cornell and the University of California San Francisco to conduct experiments on the effects that tweaks to its News Feed algorithm had on users’ emotional states. The kicker: Facebook used its customers as guinea pigs in the experiment without their knowledge. In the experiment, which involved a jaw-dropping 689,000 users, Facebook manipulated individuals’ newsfeeds by increasing the share of positive material presented to some users and increasing the share of negative material to other users. In other words, Facebook tested its societal influence by tampering with the emotional states of private citizens without their consent. Facebook’s willingness to manipulate its users’ emotions—and its willingness to study the best way to do so—is important to keep in mind as the company pledges to manipulate America out of political polarization. Facebook has a history of quietly exerting its power to influence political opinions in America without its users’ knowledge. When the Black Lives Matter movement was still in its infantstage the Facebook employees who oversaw the company’s “trending topics” section received an order: push Black Lives Matter, and they did, and the rest is history.

The Wisest Man who ever lived

Every morning, without fail, I pray a prayer of commitment. It is a prayer that I wrote and then memorized. It has changed over the last 30 years since I first wrote it, a little bit, but not much. Towards the end of the prayer I ask God to give me His wisdom, quoting James 1:4 to God as a faith statement, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who will give to him generously and without reproach.” I then make the commitment to God that I will seek for wisdom like silver, or gold, or precious treasure, with all my heart. Again, I have made this commitment and prayed that prayer every morning without fail for 30 years plus. Why? Because I know that I need wisdom desperately, and I am so far from being a “wise man”.

God appeared to Solomon in a dream and asked him what one thing he would like God to do for him, and he asked for wisdom. God was very pleased with his request and made him the wisest man on the earth.

1 Kings 4:29-31 Now God gave Solomon wisdom and very great discernment and breadth of mind, like the sand that is on the seashore. Solomon’s wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the sons of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt. For he was wiser than all men.

Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs, a book full of wisdom principles, anointed by God as a major source of wisdom for each one of us. I read one chapter every day from Proverbs.

But if you read the book of Ecclesiastes, also written by Solomon, you will read the words of a man who had become a fool. You might say, the greatest fool of them all. Solomon did not end his life well, especially for a man who had begun so well with so many advantages over most. Why? I am sure there are many reasons, but I believe a major one is he only asked for wisdom once. Because he had it he assumed he would keep it so he violated his own words, “don’t be wise in your own eyes, lest you become a fool”. Because he had wisdom he did not continue to seek for wisdom or to ask God for wisdom and he became a fool.

We desperately need wisdom to navigate through our times. Those who don’t seek it diligently or ask God for it desperately will be left with natural wisdom, earthly wisdom, and demonic wisdom, rather than that wisdom which comes down from above.

Are You Lying to Me?

Hebrews 5:13-14 For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.

A person can grow in wisdom, but they have to work at it diligently, seek it diligently, and be a learner. There are at least seven different ways to grow in wisdom, and the most important is to read, study, and memorize the Bible. The Bible is the mind of Christ, the words of God, and divine principles for success. The more of God’s Word that has filled our mind and heart the more wisdom we will have.

The passage above says, ”accustomed to the word of righteousness.” ”Accustomed to” obviously means that we read it a lot, it isn’t a periodic, random activity in our life, but an essential discipline. It also says that the person who ”practices, ” will be able to discern whether something they hear is good or bad, true or false. ”Practice” again is routine, regular, discipline for the purpose of getting better.

When we have great wisdom, we will be able to quickly discern when we hear something whether it is accurate or false. We may not know exactly what is not true, but we will have a sense that something is wrong. “Our senses are trained” to discern the difference between what is true and what is crapp.

Very few people are willing to take the daily time required to be become a mature and wise person. The rewards and benefits that come into the life of a person who has diligently sought after wisdom like gold, silver, precious treasure and has become like another Solomon are amazing, and one of the really cool benefits is that no one will be able to fool or deceive them.

In our day and age where “false news”, and “fake news” is so prevalent it would be a great gift to be able to know what is true.

The Joy of Grandchildren

This afternoon I worked on finishing a project of putting an electric motor on a bicycle for one of my grandsons. He had done much of the work on it with me this last week and I drove into Home Depoe to get some machine screws to finish the project this afternoon and then Patty and I delivered it to him this evening. As he barreled down the road at over 20 mph with this very triumphant look on his face I felt very happy. In the midst of all the craziness that is going on that irritates me, and depresses me it is so nice to have a very positive experience and a very warm feeling that comes from family.

Wisdom

God is ”all wise”, He created the world with His wisdom, He created us with His wisdom, and He planned out the history of the world with His wisdom. He loves to give His wisdom to us if we seek for it diligently by faithfully reading the Bible, the mind of Christ, and by seeking it humbly by asking those people around us for counsel whom we observe have more wisdom than we do. Getting wisdom is God’s will for us, and we will bring that level of wisdom with us as we enter into eternity. God wants to be with us, fellowship with us, and communicate with us for all eternity, how fun will that be for Him if we all are a bunch of idiots when we get there. The almighty God of the universe who created everything in perfect symmetry and beauty and holds it all together with His wisdom and might talking to those who can’t even plan their own life, but set their minds on earthly things and are content with money and stuff. God gives His infinite wisdom to those who ask, but only if they are already seeking for it with more passion than gold, silver, and precious treasure. Let me say it again in case you missed it, we will enter heaven with the level of wisdom that we have grown to, at the point of our death.

Giving to the Poor

Patty and I have for most of our almost 51 years of married life given money to people who are in need on a regular basis. Very rarely does anybody come back for a second round, because they appreciated the help the first time so much. When people give to people it builds relationship, and it doesn’t foster dependency. It is God’s system or plan in helping the poor, but the problem is that there are to many stingy, selfish people to make it work. God had severe words for those who ignored the poor amount them

Ezekiel 16:49 Behold, this was the guilt of Israel, she and her daughters had arrogance, abundant food and careless ease, but she did not help the poor and needy.

Deuteronomy 15:7-8 “If there is a poor man with you, one of your brothers, in any of your towns in your land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart, nor close your hand from your poor brother; but you shall freely open your hand to him, and shall generously lend him sufficient for his need in whatever he lacks.

Isaiah 58:7-9 Is it not to divide your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into the house;
When you see the naked, to cover him; Then your light will break out like the dawn, and your recovery will speedily spring forth; and your righteousness will go before you; The glory of the Lord will be your rear guard. Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
You will cry, and He will say, here am I.

Probably very few things that we did as parents was as impactful to our kids as when we brought in a homeless old lady to live with us for 6 months. She was a major pain in the butt, but God used it in all of our lives.

Division

This will be the shortest blog I have ever written because I have already written two today, and I don’t want to bore you.

People are saying that our country is divided, and it is. People say we are divided by race, color, gender, sexual preference, and political party. According to the Bible not only our country is divided but the whole world is. We are divided between those who are fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ and those who are not. The book of Proverbs would suggest that we are divided by those who are wise and those who are fools. The division occurs because those who do not love Jesus as their Savior and God don’t like those who do. The division occurs because those who are fools act like fools.

I got to ride in an ambulance

We were having a barbecue yesterday in our back yard with 3 different of our kids and their familes. Sam was barbecuing sockeye salmon that I just brought home from Alaska from a fishing trip. I got to feeling dizzy and asked Patty to help me walk to the bedroom so I could lay down for a minute, and shortly after standing up I fainted. I guess I was kind of a spooky sight lying there with my eyes wide open, my mouth open, my face white as a sheet, and out like a light. I came to just as the EMT’s showed up and then the ambulance. I really didn’t want to go to the hospital, but I was so groggy I couldn’t put up much of a fight. I fainted because of a drop in blood pressure, my blood pressure was 80/50. By the time we got to the Albany hospital it was back up to my normal 120/80. I think that the reason it dropped was that I inadvertently took two doses of my Parkinson’s medicine within 2 hours when it is supposed to be every 8 hours. I have an alarm on my phone that reminds me every 8 hours and then I mark that I took it, but sometimes I get to busy to mark it down, and then I forget that I took it. I probably will be more careful now, at least for awhile. Man it is a bummer getting old. First-time for me to ride in an ambulance. I think I will make it my last. Being physically out of it, and unable to get my body to do what I want is a very rotten feeling. I got home from the hospital and rode my stationary bicycle for two hours and again this morning, disciplining my body for being so wimpy. I am planning on climbing Mt Adams in one week so I better be getting in shape. The command to be strong is given almost 50 times in the Bible and it obviously isn’t talking about physical strength when it says that. The command to be strong in the strength which God supplies means to manage pressure well, to endure under trials, to not be anxious, or fearful of the COVID virus, and to not get uptight when you get Parkinson’s, cancer, heart problems, or a broken toe. Paul said, ”my physical body is getting weaker but my spiritual body is getting stronger”. That is what I want and will work hard to make happen.