Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Bye Bye Biker

Well it’s happened. I sold my motorcycle and rejoined the ranks of 4-wheeled transportation. It was a calculated transaction that’s time had come. And while I’m going to miss it, it’s okay. You see, while most bike owners have them as “toys” or something to ride occasionally, it was my sole source of transportation. We’ve been a 1 car / 1 bike family for 2 solid years, and while my wife enjoyed riding with me on a trip or two; her preference for leather seats, air-conditioning, tinted windows, sunroof and multi-disc CD player usually got her nod.

So, “Why the change?” you ask. Our family situation warranted it. My youngest daughter will start driving soon, and guess who’s the driving instructor? Yes, it’s my honor, but not on a motorcycle! And while the motorcycle brought me great joy, even in my daily commute to work, at this particular time in my life – a change is required. I would love to have kept the motorcycle, but my income doesn’t allow me to have toys of that caliber.

I’ve blogged before about change, but the willingness to change course when necessary is the point of my blog today. Not everyone is willing. Many are stubborn, or determined might be a kinder word, and refuse to change even when confronted with overwhelming data that makes it obvious a change is needed. Some folks go through life perpetually frustrated because they feel they just can’t get a break from circumstances in their lives, when actually a simple change of direction on their part might help things go their way. If I may, I’d like to share a few ideas that could help all of us make the changes we need to in life.

The first concept is the ability to see outside yourself. While it’s true that we never know what tomorrow will bring; through evaluation, we can estimate where our current course is taking us. Tunnel vision isn’t an asset and shouldn’t be confused with focus; it’s not the same. Be willing to draw back and take an unbiased look at what’s really going on in your situation.

Secondly, is feedback from friends, or as I stated in my last blog – counsel. I have stated in the past and firmly believe that we need one another, and the sooner we learn to help and receive help, the better off we’ll be. We can’t go through life without our actions affecting others; a person who is self-aware takes note of that. Do you bless others or does it seem people avoid you? Even without asking for a verbal opinion, how others respond to you is a clue as to how they view you. People are naturally drawn to others who are honest, fair, and have hope and purpose.

The Holy Spirit is whom I’d like to share with you lastly. It’s been my experience that when things get tough in my life, when I have to work really hard to make the simplest things happen, it’s usually the Spirit speaking to me that a course correction is needed. Conversely, when things are going well, blessings are coming my way and even difficult things are handled with ease; the Spirit confirms in my heart that I’m on track.

So what about you? Are you willing to change when it’s necessary? Do you always know when you need to? Do you listen to counsel from friends? Do you know the Holy Spirit, is He a part of your life? I’d love to hear from you about it. And I’ll be sure to let you know when it’s time to get my next motorcycle!


Thursday, May 10, 2007


Good day to you my friends. Been a couple weeks since I last blogged and the cause for the delay is the usual suspects, the busyness of life and yes…the weather. The continued rain in my area of the world has posed certain daily challenges for a guy who rides a motorcycle every day. But that’s not what I came to blog about today.

Counsel is what I’m talking about. Not counsel such as Denny Crane, the quirky lawyer portrayed by William Shatner in one of my more liked television programs Boston Legal. But then again, the premise is the same. The definition found at www.yourdictionary.com is as follows: n. 1. The act of exchanging opinions and ideas; consultation. 2. Advice or guidance, especially as solicited from a knowledgeable person. The second definition is where I’m headed today.

As I contemplated this subject, I found it rather ironic that my view on this has changed during the course of my life; perhaps your experience has been similar. As a young man, before I had left the care of my parents, advice and guidance was the last thing I wanted, from them especially. I am now on the other side of that coin, and one of the most common phrases I hear from my own teenager is, “You just don’t get it!” I used to feel that way…a lot. In fact, that feeling led me to drug use and addiction. I was convinced that no one could possibly relate or know how I felt and the drugs were an escape and way to numb the emotions and feelings I didn’t know what to do with. More correctly stated – the emotions and feelings I wouldn’t share with anyone.

I now have a completely opposite view of advice and guidance; I know the importance of counsel. Accepting sound counsel helped me to walk away from drugs. Accepting counsel keeps me from walking away from family, friends and situations that get tough. Good counsel is priceless, and can be found in many different places, not just a lawyer to represent you in a court of law. But for the record, I recommend one should you find yourself there.

People who love you often give good counsel because they care about you; they want what’s best for you. Teenagers would do well to learn that lesson early on. There are times in life when a professional counselor may be warranted, a completely neutral voice viewing your situation from the sidelines can give you a perspective you may not have considered. One of my favorite counselors is the Holy Spirit. Before Jesus was crucified, he told those he spent time with that after him would come a helper, a counselor – the Holy Spirit who would lead, strengthen and guide us. I’ve found that to be true.

And the coolest part is that because it’s a spirit thing, that spirit appears in those I love, my family and friends, people who appear in my life and help me. God, in His infinite love for me moves among those I come in contact with and does what He said He would – never leaves me alone. I challenge you today to open your spiritual eyes and look for the counselor that God has promised you, and then listen. I’m sure good advice or guidance is sure to come.