ARCHIVED ESSAYS FROM OUTSIDE SOURCES
- Author indicated when known -
ARE DONE A CERTAIN WAY?
Start with a cage containing five monkeys.
Inside the cage, hang a banana on a string and place a set of stairs under it. Before long, a monkey will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana. As soon as he touches the stairs, spray all of the other monkeys with cold water. After awhile, another monkey makes an attempt with the same result - all the other monkeys are sprayed with cold water.
Pretty soon, when another monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent it.
Now, put away the cold water. Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one. The new monkey sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs. To his surprise and horror, all the other monkeys attack him. After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs, he will be assaulted.
Next, remove another of the original five monkeys and replace it with a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm! Likewise, replace a third original monkey with a new one, then a fourth, then the fifth. Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs, he is attacked. Most of the monkeys that are beating him have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs or why they are participating in the beating of the newest monkey. After replacing all the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys have ever been sprayed with cold water.
Nevertheless, no monkey ever again approaches the stairs to try for the banana.
Why not? Because as far as they know that's the way it's always been done around here.
And that, my friend, is how company policy begins.
Charles Plumb was a U.S. Navy jet pilot in Vietnam. After 75 combat missions, his plane was destroyed by a surface-to-air missile. Plumb ejected and parachuted into enemy hands. He was captured and spent 6 years in a communist Vietnamese prison. He survived the ordeal and now lectures on lessons learned from that experience.
One day, when Plumb and his wife were sitting in a restaurant, a man at another table came up and said, "You're Plumb! You flew jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down!"
"How in the world did you know that?" asked Plumb. "I packed your parachute," the man replied. Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude. The man pumped his hand and said, "I guess it worked!" Plumb assured him,
"It sure did. If your chute hadn't worked, I wouldn't be here today."
Plumb couldn't sleep that night, thinking about that man. Plumb says, "I kept wondering what he might have looked like in a Navy uniform: a white hat, a bib in the back, and bell-bottom trousers. I wonder how many times I might have seen him and not even said 'Good morning, how are you?' or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot and he was just a sailor."
Plumb thought of the many hours the sailor had spent on a long wooden table in the bowels of the ship, carefully weaving the shrouds and folding the silks of each chute, holding in his hands each time the fate of someone he didn't know.
Now, Plumb asks his audience, "Who's packing your parachute?" Everyone has someone who provides what they need to make it through the day. Plumb also points out that he needed many kinds of parachutes when his plane was shot down over enemy territory-he needed his physical parachute, his mental parachute, his emotional parachute, and his spiritual parachute. He called on all these supports before reaching safety.
Sometimes in the daily challenges that life gives us, we miss what is really important. We may fail to say hello, please, or thank you, congratulate someone on something wonderful that has happened to them, give a compliment, or just do something nice for no reason.
As you go through this week, this month, this year, recognize people who pack your parachute. I am sending you this as my way of thanking you for your part in packing my parachute !!! And I hope you will send it on to those who have helped pack yours!
Sometimes, we wonder why friends keep forwarding jokes, anecdotes or touching stories to us without writing a word, maybe this could explain: When you are very busy, but still want to keep in touch, guess what you do--- you forward a joke or a story. And to let you know that you are still remembered, you are still important, you are still loved, you are still cared for, guess what you get? --- A forwarded joke or a story.
So my friend, next time if you get a joke, don't think that you've been sent just another forwarded joke but that you have been thought of today and your friend on the other side of the Internet wanted you to know you were remembered.
YOUR HUT IS BURNING
The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming.
Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements and to store his few possessions.
But then one day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames with the smoke rolling up to the sky. The worst had happened; everything was lost. He was stunned with grief and anger.
"God, how could you do this to me!" he cried.
Early the next day, however, he was awakened by the sound of a ship that was approaching the island. It had come to rescue him.
"How did you know I was here?" asked the weary man of his rescuers.
"We saw your smoke signal," they replied.
It is easy to get discouraged when things are going bad. But we shouldn't lose heart, because God is at work in our lives, even in the midst of pain and suffering. Remember, next time your little hut is burning to the ground, it may just be a smoke signal that summons the grace of God.
For all the negative things we have to say to ourselves...
God has a positive answer for it.
You say: "It's impossible."
God says: "All things are possible." (Luke 18:27)
You say: "I'm too tired."
God says: "I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28-20)
You say: "Nobody really loves me."
God says: "I love you." (John 3:16 & John 13:34)
You say: "I can't go on."
God says: "My grace is sufficient." (II Corinthians 12:9 & Psalm 91:15)
You say: "I can't figure things out."
God says: "I will direct your steps." (Proverbs 3:5-6)
You say: "I can't do it."
God says: "You can do all things." (Philippians 4:13)
You say: "I'm not able."
God says: "I am able." (II Corinthians 9:8)
You say: "It's not worth it."
God says: "It will be worth it." (Romans 8:28)
You say: "I can't forgive myself."
God says: "I forgive you." (I John 1:9 & Romans 8:1)
You say: "I can't manage."
God says: "I will supply all your needs." (Philippians 4:19)
You say: "I'm afraid."
God says: "I have not given you a spirit of fear." (II Timothy 1:7)
You say: "I'm always worried and frustrated."
God says: "Cast all your cares on ME." (I Peter 5:7)
You say: "I don't have enough faith."
God says: "I've given everyone a measure of faith." (Romans 12:3)
You say: "I'm not smart enough."
God says: "I give you wisdom." (I Corinthians 1:30)
You say: "I feel all alone."
God says: "I will never leave you or forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5)
Pass this on??? You never know whose life may be in need of this today.
There are some weeks that we all feel our huts are burning.
Everything I need to know, I learned from Noah's Ark...
ONE: Don't miss the boat.
TWO: Remember that we are all in the same boat.
THREE: Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark.
FOUR: Stay fit. When you're 60 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big.
FIVE: Don't listen to critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done.
SIX: Build your future on high ground.
SEVEN: For safety's sake, travel in pairs.
EIGHT: Speed isn't always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.
NINE: When you're stressed, float awhile.
TEN: Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals.
ELEVEN: No matter the storm, when you are with God, there's always a rainbow waiting.
:::The following formula/example is a sad commentary
on how (all too often) businesses are operated these days:::
We have all been to those meetings where someone wants over 100 percent. How about achieving 103 percent? Here's a little math that might prove helpful in the future...
What makes life 100 percent?
If: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
can be represented as:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26
H A R D W O R K
8 1 18 4 23 15 18 11 = 98% only
K N O W L E D G E
11 14 15 23 12 5 4 7 5 = 96% only
A T T I T U D E
1 20 20 9 20 21 4 5 = 100%
B U L L S H I T
2 21 12 12 19 8 9 20 = 103%
So, it stands to reason that hard work and knowledge will get you close,
but Attitude and Bullshit will put you over the top.
A man entered my father's diesel-repair shop, said he was a driver from a trucking fleet and suggested, "How about adding a few extra parts to the bill? We'll let the company pay for it, and you and I can split the difference."
Dad refused, but the customer was insistent. "I come through here a lot," the man continued. "We could make quite a bit of money."
Dad said that wasn't how he operated. "Everyone doesit!" the man yelled. "Are you some kind of fool?" Burning mad, Dad asked him to leave and take his business elsewhere.
Suddenly the man smiled and extended his hand for a handshake. "I own a trucking company," he said. "I've been looking for a mechanic I can trust, and I'm not taking my business anywhere else!"
*If you have food in your refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof over your head and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of this world.
*If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish someplace, you are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.
*If you can hold someone's hand, hug them or even touch them on the shoulder, you are blessed because you can offer God's healing touch.
*If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million who will not survive the week.
*If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture or the pangs of starvation, you are ahead of 500 million people around the world.
*If you attend a church meeting without fear of harassment, arrest or torture of death, you are more blessed that almost three billion people in the world.
*If your parents are still married and alive, you are very rare, even in the United States.
*If you hold up your head with a smile on your face and are truly thankful, you are blessed because the majority can, but most do not.
*If you prayed yesterday and today, you are in the minority because you believe in God's willingness to hear and answer prayer.
*If you can read this message, you are more blessed than over two billion people in the world that cannot read anything at all.
*May God's love surround you, enfold you, strengthen and protect you.
*May you walk in peace and pass it on.
TRIBUTE TO THE UNITED STATES
(Possibly written by a Canadian named Gordon Sinclair)
America: The Good Neighbor.
Widespread but only partial news coverage was given recently to a remarkable editorial broadcast from Toronto by Gordon Sinclair, a Canadian television commentator. What follows is the full text of his trenchant remarks as printed in the Congressional Record:
"This Canadian thinks it is time to speak up for the Americans as the most generous and possibly the least appreciated people on all the earth.
Germany, Japan and, to a lesser extent, Britain and Italy were lifted out of the debris of war by the Americans who poured in billions of dollars and forgave other billions in debts. None of these countries is today paying even the interest on its remaining debts to the United States.
When France was in danger of collapsing in 1956, it was the Americans who propped it up, and their reward was to be insulted and swindled on the streets of Paris. I was there. I saw it.
When earthquakes hit distant cities, it is the United States that hurries in to help. This spring, 59 American communities were flattened by tornadoes. Nobody helped.
The Marshall Plan and the Truman Policy pumped billions of dollars into discouraged countries. Now newspapers in those countries are writing about the decadent, warmongering Americans.
I'd like to see just one of those countries that is gloating over the erosion of the United States dollar build its own airplane. Does any other country in the world have a plane to equal the Boeing Jumbo Jet, the Lockheed Tri-Star, or the Douglas DC10? If so, why don't they fly them? Why do all the International lines except Russia fly American Planes?
Why does no other land on earth even consider putting a man or woman on the moon? You talk about Japanese technocracy, and you get radios. You talk about German technocracy, and you get automobiles.
You talk about American technocracy, and you find men on the moon - not once, but several times - and safely home again.
You talk about scandals, and the Americans put theirs right in the store window for everybody to look at. Even their draft-dodgers are not pursued and hounded. They are here on our streets, and most of them, unless they are breaking Canadian laws, are getting American dollars from ma and pa at home to spend here.
When the railways of France, Germany and India were breaking down through age, it was the Americans who rebuilt them. When the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central went broke, nobody loaned them an old caboose. Both are still broke.
I can name you 5000 times when the Americans raced to the help of other people in trouble. Can you name me even one time when someone else raced to the Americans in trouble? I don't think there was outside help even during the San Francisco earthquake.
Our neighbors have faced it alone, and I'm one Canadian who is damned tired of hearing them get kicked around. They will come out of this thing with their flag high. And when they do, they are entitled to thumb their nose at the lands that are gloating over their present troubles. I hope Canada is not one of those."
Stand proud, America!
COMMUNISM: You have two cows.
The government takes both of them and gives you part of the milk.
SOCIALISM: You have two cows.
The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor.
FASCISM: You have two cows.
The government takes both cows and sells you the milk.
NAZISM: You have two cows.
The government takes both cows, then shoots you.
BUREAUCRACY: You have two cows.
The government takes both of them, shoots one, milks the other, then pours the milk down the drain.
CAPITALISM: You have two cows.
You sell one cow and buy a bull.
Then Choose How You Start
Your Day Tomorrow.
Michael is the kind of guy you love to hate. He is always in a good mood and always has something positive to say: When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "if I were any better, I would be twins!" He was a natural motivator.
If an employee was having a bad day, Michael was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation. Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Michael and asked him, "I don't get it! You can't be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?"
Michael replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can choose to be in a bad mood. I choose to be in a good mood.
Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it.
Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life.
"Yeah, right, it's not that easy," I protested.
"Yes, it is," Michael said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It's your choice how you live life."
I reflected on what Michael said. Soon thereafter, I left the company to start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I made a choice about life instead of reacting to it. Several years later, I heard that Michael was involved in a serious accident, falling some 60 feet from a communications tower.
After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Michael was released from the hospital with rods placed in his back. I saw Michael about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied. "If I were any better, I'd be twins. Wanna see my scars?"
I declined to see his wounds, but I did ask him what had gone through his mind as the accident took place. "The first thing that went through my mind was the well-being of my soon to be born daughter, " Michael replied. "Then, as I lay on the ground, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live or I could choose to die. I chose to live."
"Weren't you scared? Did you lose consciousness?" I asked.
Michael continued, "...the paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the ER and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read "he's a dead man. I knew I needed to take action."
"What did you do?" I asked. "Well there was a big burly nurse shouting questions at me," said Michael. "She asked if I was allergic to anything. "Yes, I replied." The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, "Gravity." Over their laughter, I told them, "I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead."
Michael lived, thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully. Attitude, after all, is everything. "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
After all today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.
- Author Unknown -
God: "So, you would like to interview Me?" What are your questions?
Journalist: "What surprises you most about mankind?"
God: "That they get bored of being children, are in a rush to grow up, and then long to be children again. That they lose their health to make money and then lose their money to restore their health.
That by thinking anxiously about the future, they forget the present, such that they live neither for the present nor the future.
That they live as if they will never die, and they die as if they had never lived..."
God's hands took mine and we were silent for while and then I asked...
Journalist: "As a parent, what are some of life's lessons you want your children to learn?"
God replied with a smile:
"To learn that they cannot make anyone love them. What they can do is to let themselves be loved. To learn that what is most valuable is not what they have in their lives, but who they have in their lives.
To learn that it is not good to compare themselves to others. All will be judged individually on their own merits, not as a group on a comparison basis!
To learn that a rich person is not the one who has the most, but is one who needs the least. To learn that it only takes a few seconds to open profound wounds in persons we love, and that it takes many years to heal them.
To learn to forgive by practicing forgiveness. To learn that there are persons that love them dearly, but simply do not know how to express or show their feelings.
To learn that money can buy everything but happiness. To learn that two people can look at the same thing and see it totally different. To learn that a true friend in someone who knows everything about them...and likes them anyway.
To learn that it is not always enough that they be forgiven by others, but that they have to forgive themselves."
Journalist: I sat there for a while enjoying the moment. I thanked Him for his time and for all that He has done for me and my family, and He replied, "Anytime. I'm here 24 hours a day. All you have to do is ask for me, and I'll answer."
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