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Friday, April 8, 2011

My GPS stopped working! What do you do when that happens?

On Dec 6th, 2006 the world GPS system failed and it was blamed on a supposed solar flare of historic levels which NOAA claims occurred Dec 5, 2006 10:18-10:45 UTC. However, this information was not made public until April 2007. Normally, something this big would be a major news story, but the 5 months of silence was more than revealing. The news networks, military, phone companies, wireless and interactive street mapping products all depend on GPS, so it was not a secret to  any of them. But for 5 months, not a word was mentioned about this "historic" solar flare.[1]

 Last night while driving to see my grandson and daughter, the GPS in our car froze and we were left without directions in a strange city.

That got me thinking, what would happen if the GPS system suddenly stopped working world wide?

 I took a look and found out that it had already happened! At least it is said to have happened. I don’t really believe everything I read on the internet and this is one article that I do think is suspect …sorry to whoever wrote it.

 Consider what would really happen on GPS failure…

 The first effect is that around the world, aircraft would suddenly have alarms ringing and pilots would be having to start pulling out maps and monitoring systems more carefully. They are trained for this so disaster would be averted. The confusion that would occur would hit every newspaper however.

 Then motorists would loose their way like I did last night. Ships would have some problems, particularly those going in and out of harbours, but again the failsafe is a person who knows the harbour is navigating them in and out and knows the harbour better than the GPS. There are backup systems.

 To have GPS failure, a majority of the 30 satellites making up the system would have to fail. Not likely! Perhaps a solar flare could do it, but they were designed to withstand this type of onslaught so it is not really that high a risk!

 So, my commoners conclusion is that its not so bad.

 So how did I work out the failure of my little GPS unit. I prayed and turned in the direction I believed God (and my wife indicated). It was the right way. I then called on backup (phoned my daughter and got directions).

 The important aspect was my first reaction was to pray! When you are in a similar circumstance, what do you do? What would be the first reaction?

 I am glad calling on God was my first option, my wife second, and others third! It showed me I still have a good priority response to things that go wrong!

 Sometimes we need to consider how we react in adverse circumstances and make sure God is part of the process.

I think I passed that little test. Would you?

[1] http://www.divulgence.net/gps_failure.htm

Fri, April 8, 2011 | link          Comments

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Fighting slothfulness? Or just having difficulty waking?

A sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
   he is too lazy to bring it back to his mouth.
A sluggard is wiser in his own eyes
   than seven people who answer discreetly.
- Proverbs 26:15-17

 “You can't imagine what a pleasure this complete laziness is to me: not a thought in my brain- you might send a ball rolling through it!”
 Leo Nikolaevich Tolstoy

 I am lazy at times, aren’t we all?

 The question of whether we have become slothful is a difficult one to answer because if I am slothful, I will probably have found so many ways of excusing my behaviour, that I have an answer for almost every question people pose to try and help me!

 The bible is accurate in saying that a sluggard is wiser in his own eyes than seven people who think about what they say and answer with care! Ladies please don’t think this only applies to men, although I have to say as a guy we are worse at this that you are!

 Making excuses for not doing what we know we need to do, or procrastinating so the time to do it passes and we can no longer accomplish a task is often the result us not receiving enough direction and discipline as a child.

We learn bad behaviours and they don’t get corrected so we never sufficiently internalize how we have to do things we don’t want to. Instead we become the fast mouth masters! We won’t lift a figure to help ourselves but we wag our tongues with ease don’t we?

 It’s difficult once this evil gets a hold on our life and drags into our existence the lack of direction, the junk, the poor ability to structure our environments.

 One thing I have noticed is that often people who have this illness seem to love to have fun deep into the evenings, and fail to get up when they should in the mornings. Sleeping in seems to be a normal problem for this type of person! Have you noticed this?

 So what do we do about this?

 Well we have to overcome our own inertia! That means to get the ball moving, we have to push hard! The first step is to start to structure our thoughts and the first thought to structure is our prayer to God for help.

 We don’t want to ask God to clean up our mess, we want to ask God to show us the first thing to clean up and then pray that we would find the way to do it!

Then we do it!

Immediately, not later!


Yes, right now!

 Once that’s done we repeat the prayer!

 That’s how the ball gets going!

Sometimes it will require repentance, asking forgiveness for overflowing our mess into others lives. We need to do that as well! Sometimes it will require humility! We will need to ask for help that we know is going to come from people we have injured with our behaviours and previous attitudes. Sometimes, we will need to approach annoyed people with gentleness as well as humility as we ask for forgiveness.

 We will need to patiently work at things we don’t want to do and keep going until they get done.

Notice how this fits into God’s plan for us?

 Colossians 3:12Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

 It is good! It is good to move ourselves into a place where we are right with God, admit our failings and make positive changes in our lives.

 That’s my objective today, to ask God what he would like me to change and do it! What’s your objective today?

Oh, and as a parent of a sluggard, remember they learn it through a lack of discipline...so help them :)
Thu, April 7, 2011 | link          Comments

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Before I go to sleep. . .

Man should forget his anger before he lies down to sleep.
Mohandas Gandhi

 Sleep is one of those things we need, and often we need more than we get!

 Even the apostle Paul seemed to suffer from this malady, he says…

 2 Corinthians 6:4-6 (New International Version, ©2011)
Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love;

 I know Jesus was unable to rest as he waited for his time of trial, and yet his apostles slept when he needed them to pray!

 Sleep is important, but having the correct relationship with God and the correct thought life is perhaps more important.

 Often just as we are going to sleep we  pump images and sounds into our minds that are not exactly guaranteed to keep us thinking good thoughts through our dream state.

 How many of us watch a CSI or NCSI, murder, action and thriller type movie or television series just before we go to sleep. Then we wonder why we wake up tired or have nightmares?

 In this case we set ourselves up to be the hero or victim in our dream world, resulting in a dream states of fear and adrenalin.

 When we sleep, our minds change state, but they use the content of our days to fill our night hours with new imagery and sound. We feel, hear and smell as if we were living the events.

 So how can we set ourselves up for a good nights sleep?

 Firstly, we need to establish an emotional and thought state that will trigger similar states as we go to sleep. That’s why our bible suggest forgiving others before we sleep (really doing it not just saying so!).

 It is why reading a piece of God’s word, or praying just before bed is good. It is having loving thoughts and perhaps watching inspiring or uplifting video material, or reading an inspiring magazine article or book will help.

 These actions pay back in that our night is spent restfully and the next day goes so much better!

 Who wants to wake feeling almost as tired as when they descended into the dream world? Not me!

 I want to love well, think well, sleep well and wake well!

 That having been my experience for a while now, I want to encourage you to look after yourself as you head to sleep tonight.

 Meanwhile, let’s give the day to God and get going! Have a good one!
Wed, April 6, 2011 | link          Comments

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

When is “Today”?

God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.”
- Hebrews 4:7

 This “today” reference in the bible is a complicated thing to understand. It comes out of a piece of writing in Hebrews 4 that says…

 1 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. 2 For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because they did not share the faith of those who obeyed. 3 Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,
   “So I declared on oath in my anger,
   ‘They shall never enter my rest.’”

    And yet his works have been finished since the creation of the world. 4 For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: “On the seventh day God rested from all his works.” 5 And again in the passage above he says, “They shall never enter my rest.”

  6 Therefore since it still remains for some to enter that rest, and since those who formerly had the good news proclaimed to them did not go in because of their disobedience, 7 God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.” This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted:

    Today, if you hear his voice,
   do not harden your hearts.”

  8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.

 So what is this saying? It is so confusing isn’t it?

 Well it is about a promise that is re-occuring. The original reference to “Today” is found in Psalm 95:7-8 and it is a psalm of David.

 David was pointing out that 500 years after the Exodus, the promise applied, this was "Today". Then Paul, the assumed writer of Hebrews, points out that we are also part of that promise and his day is also "today". This is still the same time as referred to in this present day. It refers to the promise that we will enter into God’s rest!

 Now Paul wrote that approximately 2000 years ago, but he set’s the time as “today”!

 This is because the time we live in prior to entering the rest is “today”.

 We are not yet in the promised time of rest, it is still to come!

So what are we to do?

 Well Paul gives us some good advice. . .

 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.

  12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

 To enter God's rest we need to let the word of God, Jesus, act upon our lives exposing us to God in a way that opens up our lives to the inspection of God. Then, only by the covering of Jesus protection, will we be found able to enter that rest.

 So “today”, let’s remember Jesus, and that we are in a time where everything we do will be made available to be seen. Each thought action and word! Will we be able to react without shame under the purity of God’s light?

 Through Jesus I trust I will, I hope the same for you!  
Tue, April 5, 2011 | link          Comments

Monday, April 4, 2011

The purpose of pain!

“There is purpose in pain, Otherwise it were devilish.”
Lord Lytton (Edward Robert Bulwer Lytton) ("Owen Meredith") Source: Lucile (pt. II, canto V, st. 8) 

Maybe you are more fortunate than I, and have never experience real pain.

Pain comes in many forms and intensities and I guess that nobody can say to another the exact level of pain they experience.

 My wife is an occupational therapist and often asks people on a scale of 1 to 10 what is their pain level. She finds that what one person considers a 3, is another persons 10.

 Being different on experiencing pain and on being willing to let others know how we feel, we can rarely understand how another feels.

However, when it comes to ourselves, we know!

 This weekend (after three weeks of moving furniture and I moved house and not feeling more than a tired muscle), I bent down to pick up a piece of paper and my back went out. A white hot knife between the vertebra would perhaps have been more comfortable and then on trying to stand up I found the world of explosive pain erupted to new levels causing me almost to pass out!

 Being male I am sure a number of women are saying I am exaggerating, and perhaps you are right, but that’s how it felt to me! Within moments the rest of the muscles in my back contracted into little balls of tense hell in commiseration with the angry back pain.

 Hobbling down the stair to where my wife was, must have been a sight! Bent double, trying not to tip forward down the flight of stairs that look impossibly long, and my only objective being a hope that somehow those loving arms could help me get up right again!

 Well other than compassion, she was unable to do much for the pain and a now over a day later, I sit here typing with anguish on my face!

 So why do we have pain!

Perhaps for the reason that I have experience in the last few hours and previously when I was busy dying of an illness. I talk to God a lot more and I sure evaluate what I consider mundane and normal all over again.

My eyes open with compassion to those who have had pain, and I look with respect at every elderly person I meet.

Pain focuses our brain!

 Pain is not pleasant, sometimes it kills, releasing the pained person into a perfect paradise where pain and suffering is not more, but while we have it, it is a tool that as a minimum gives us the opportunity to learn and better ourselves.

 We should take these times, elusive as they are (thankfully) and use pain to maximum effect, learning how to deal with ourselves in trying circumstances, how to correctly deal with others when under pressure, and listening for the voice of God around us.

 Without this approach, pain is just what most people let it be, debilitating!

 The amazing thing is we all have the ability to learn the lessons from pain without having to experience it. Perhaps if I had, I would not be called to this lesson of life.

 What about you?
Mon, April 4, 2011 | link          Comments

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Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

  • Published: September, 2010
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 208
  • Size: 6x9
  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

Available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, iUniverse.

you can email me at Author@KenXBriggs.com

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This suspense thriller centers on Kiara, a beautiful young woman pursued by a murderous group of people, who relentlessly and ruthlessly hunt her and her sisters. Kiara has no idea why she is being targeted! When Kiara and her family turn to the law for help, this fails. Her pursuers’ powers reach deeply into the political and law enforcement world. Family support for her dwindles when they too have to flee her pursuers. Can Kiara escape the clutches of both the law and dishonest big business? With the media broadcasting that Kiara and friends are dangerous and subversive, can Kiara clear her name and bring her pursuers to justice?



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 RiftInEvil.gifThe town of Zinaville is dropped into a spiral of evil causing a young man and a beautiful but abused woman to launch into an investigation that unveils an evil conspiracy.

A horrific mining accident results in Joshua Robyn's father being killed. Joshua struggles both with himself and his townsfolk as he tries to make sense of an incomprehensible situation. Is it an accident or a murder? Why is there a seeming link to evil? Why is his work environment suddenly threatening? What is the conspiracy about and what are they trying to do? As action moves dramatically from exotic African grasslands to the heart of North America's cities, the plot unfolds and the pace quickens. Will there be time? Why is a beautiful abused young woman in the center of this plot?

Evil tendrils tighten on their lives and the interplay between the visible and invisible world shows opposing forces at work.

Will there be a rift in evil?

Will they be able to stop the evil in time?



Click here to order Rift in Evil (ebook or Paper available)
  • Published: September, 2010
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 208
  • Size: 6x9
  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

Available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, iUniverse. Chapters

you can email me at Author@KenXBriggs.com
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