Three Stories of Jesus’ Birth

Merry Christmas! Jesus’ birth more than 2,000 years ago is both divine and historical.  So many faith traditions point to this, a special day. Let his grace and peace reign in your heart, at home, at work, and in public.  Go spread the joy.

MATTHEW 1:18

The Birth of Jesus. *18 Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, * but before they lived together, she was found with child through the holy Spirit. 19 Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, * yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Continue reading “Three Stories of Jesus’ Birth”

Top 50 Start-ups

Great Linkedin article on top 50.

Why this list of companies is better than other lists of upcoming companies? Because the data Linkedin has available makes for a more clear sense of reality. At least, that’s what they say.

I’m building the office back-room for a Start-up on my current project and I’ve done Start-ups before. It’s fun to see what’s possible.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/linkedin-top-companies-startups-50-industry-disruptors-daniel-roth

My favorite companies and their industry disruption:
– Aryaka Networks, your Verizon and Comcast bills will go down.
– Pinterest, gone hightech is tackling machine learning and AI. I didn’t see that coming.
– GRAIL, Bio-technology with $1 Billion of Bill Gates’ money, that has to be on the list.
– CourseRA, providing education to get underemployed back in the game. Nice.
– Uptake, using sensor data to make decisions, this is coming age of internet connectivity, everything and everyone will be connected.
– Wish, direct access to product manufacturers (many in China), if Americans are the low cost consumers they’ve proven to be this will do well.

There were no healthcare disrupters, hmmmmm.

What companies are your favorite?

Be Connected and Grateful To God

Sunday seems to be a good day to reflect and be at peace. Something that is harder to do now in our connected world. So, why not, for a moment, stop and think about all the good that has come to you.

Me, well, I am grateful to God, he has been exceedingly good to me, my wife Linda, my 3 boys, family, and friends. We are safe, healthy and well fed, we have generously given our time, talent and treasure to help others and tried to follow him every day.

Sunday’s were joyful and peaceful

Sunday’s, when I was young, were spent with my family, Grandparents, and cousins. There was no agenda, no internet, no cell phones, no fast food, no shopping, no texts, no interruptions. The surroundings were peaceful themselves; most stores were closed, traffic was lite. It was around the world a day of rest. Yes, Sunday was a day to meander through, to enjoy, to pray, be grateful and play. We were connected but not to “stuff” but something bigger. God was present, and so was his grace, peace, and joy. I was a happy youth surrounded by family and friends. Continue reading “Be Connected and Grateful To God”

Happiness and Faith

We All Seek Happiness

Did you know the dispensing of mental health prescriptions are at an all time high in the US? What does this mean, what does it say about the citizens of the US? Medication abuse, drug use and addictions of all kinds are on the rise. If mental health prescriptions are intended to cure the rise of the diagnosis of depression, and if we assume depression is a certain amount of unhappy, then we can say, citizens in the US are increasingly unhappy. I would make the stretch that addictions to alcohol and drugs are frequently explained as an escape from an individuals present circumstance the they must not be happy in their present circumstance. Would you agree with how I’ve connected these dots? I’ve made a generalization of course and haven’t considered physical ailments of the mind and body that would be an exception; for now let’s stick with the generalization.

Did you know the percent of people who volunteer their time to local community organizations has dropped from a high of 60% 40 years ago to an all time low of 25%? What does a decrease in serving others mean? Do you volunteer your time for the good of others? Is this decrease in volunteer time somehow related to an increase in “unhappiness?”

How Much Do You Pay For This In Your Healthcare Premium?

Is there a connection between our state of unhappiness and serving others? Is the attitude of one who serves others opposite the attitude of someone with an addiction or on depressive drugs? Are these two attitudes on the opposite ends of the happiness continuum? Only as an economic indicator, as something we can measure, can we say those serving others (not preoccupied with themselves) is opposite addiction and depression? What’s the cost to families, communities and companies in healthcare premium for our unhappiness, addictions prescription solutions? $210 billion per year is one answer; “Growing Economic Burden…” I’ve not vetted this report or double checked against other sources; this number seems to me to be quite low. Is there an alternative to our current method of treatment?

Where do we look for happiness? Is happiness found in things of “this world” like entertainment, wealth and work, honor, power, personal physical pleasure; food, sex, alcohol, drugs gambling excess in all kinds of other things? Do you seek your “fifteen minutes of fame” selfies, indulging in idol chatter?

What makes you happy and at peace? If you were depressed or if your loved one were depressed how would you solve that problem? Is depression on the rise because hoping in the empty promise of seeking happiness in the things we see advertised, things our friends have, or momentary physical pleasures or other worldly things? What’s your “addiction” what’s your worldly addiction that when you get it, it makes you happy? For how long does it make you happy?

VeggieTales Madame Blueberry Trailer

A great line from Veggie Tales, “Madame Blueberry” who is the purveyor of “Stuff” as she buys more and more to satisfy her need for “Stuff”. She is seeking happy at the Stuff Mart Store; she sees a boy with nothing who is happy with what he has. Madam Blueberry asks the Stuff Mart store manager, “I want what that boy has, I want to be happy, where do I buy that?”

As Madam Blue-berry finds out, happiness can’t be bought. We all know people, if not ourselves, who have everything and are still depressed, sad, or just not happy. That’s because things of this world feed the flesh and mind but do nothing for our soul. Our soul doesn’t need stuff it needs God.

Fr. Robert Barron, now Bishop says, “the great task of the church is to teach teh human race how to find themselves precisely in relation to God.” Word on Fire Video on YouTube called, “Atheism and Assisted Suicide”

Consider faith as the answer to pills, pleasure, wealth, honor and power because faith is heaven sent and is a free gift from God; he alone feeds our soul. Give him your heart, mind and soul first. Then, find happiness in everything he’s already given you.

Psalm 23:1-6

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want;
2 he makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters;
3 he restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil;  for you are with me;  your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;  you anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life;  and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Just a thought.