45 Days of Faith

45 Days of Faith

Episodes

March 7, 2019 5 min
Like most boys, I didn’t grow up playing with dolls but with action figures. My favorite was GI Joe. Like girls looked to Barbie to act out their futures, so us boys used Joe to go to war, to save the world, and to conquer the dirt mound. But in 1984, the brand took a hit because of the Cold War so Hasbro writer Larry Hama created a groundbreaking comic book.
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In Kevin Costner’s 1994 film War, Costner’s young son is beaten up by some bullies at the fair. After they disperse, he sees a couple of them calling out to him poking fun at his inability to find a job after returning from Vietnam. Costner walks over to the young bullies as they back up in fear. He then does something amazing, he reaches out and hands them each a fluffy pink wand of cotton candy.
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Have you ever watched the TV gameshow, “Let’s Make a Deal”? The deal is you can have what the host presents to you or you can risk it to take an unknown prize behind a large door. You might forego the initial offer of four hundred dollars and find a tropical vacation behind the door or it could be an actual goat chewing on grass. In this scenario today, I’m going to be the host of the show and I’m offering you a million dollars.
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In the 1939 classic The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy sets out to find the wizard who can help her get back home. Along the way she runs into a collection of lost souls who are in desperate need of repair. At each encounter Dorothy is so certain of the wizard’s help that she happily invites the other misfits onto the yellow brick road with her to find the one who can heal them all.
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Growing up in my big family, as a kid, I didn’t get much candy. So when halloween would roll around, trick-or-treating was a really big deal! After my sisters and I would get back with our pillow cases full of treats, we would do what most kids would do, we would pour it all out and sort it by size, ingredients, and desirability.
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When I was young, every Sunday night my family would gather around the TV and watch Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom followed by The Wonderful World of Disney. We would wait all week for Sunday night TV, mainly because it was the best family TV we had, but also because it was a great time to get together and enjoy something as a family.
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One of the most embarrassing things in the world is to be caught in a lie. When someone finds out about something you lied about, they have seen inside of you and they don’t like what they see. They’ve seen your selfishness, they’ve seen your imperfection and you know they don’t like it because they are mad at you or disappointed in you for it.
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Growing up when the power would go out, we didn’t have cell phones and the internet to stay connected to the world let alone track weather radar or get updates on when power would be restored. Though as infrequently as we would lose power, I vividly remember two things: the initial excitement of things going dark and then my mother yelling to my father, “where are the candles?!”
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In New Zealand scientists from Duke University studied 1,000 children for eight years, measuring their ability to pay attention and to ignore distractions. 24 years later they took a look at those now 32-year-old subjects to see how well they did in life. What they discovered might surprise you, but the kids who had the ability to concentrate were the most successful of the group.
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My daughter used to love story time at the library. It’s where she went to learn, to be entertained but mostly to meet new friends. Actually, it was my wife who was looking for friends, my daughter had no idea how to build friendships, she just wanted to get the most trains on the Thomas the Train table and win the race. But my wife used those story time moments as ways to find other women she clicked with.
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As a volleyball coach for many years, I know about coaching, and I know that if an athlete wants to get better at her sport she has to practice, she has to work hard at her game and build upon what she’s already good at. While a few of my athletes would complain about practice time, the majority realized that without practice they wouldn’t be able to win a single game.
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I can remember the joy of recess as a kid. It was my favorite thing about school! The games we would play, the bars we would climb, it was a world of adventure within the chainlink fence of my elementary school. One particular game I loved was Red Rover.
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If you’ve ever watched one of the more modern iterations of Star Trek then you know about an incredibly powerful enemy of Star Fleet called the Borg. Nerd Alert! The Borg are cybernetic organisms linked together with a hive mind. Which just means they are former humans who have been assimilated into a colony.
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When I was little, I wanted a dog really bad, any pet really, but my parents didn’t want any more mouths to feed in our big family, so they bought me a pet rock. Yeah, back in the 70s pets that couldn’t eat were all the rage. Gary Dahl, the rock’s inventor, became a millionaire by selling ordinary rocks in little doggie carrying cases.
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When I was little we had a 1969 Volkswagen van that we always took on road trips. I remember it being loud and hot and oh so much fun. We would drive for hours without so much as an iPad or cellphone. To pass the time we would count the different state license plates we would see, or hit each other in the shoulder every time we saw a VW bug (Slug Bug!)
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What’s your major? That’s a question that’s commonplace for anyone that attends college. It’s like a precursor for the full-on adulting question of “what do you do for a living?” In college, before I knew what I wanted to major in, I told people I was a “So-shh” major.
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When I was little I once gave my mom a homemade coupon book for her birthday, many years. Have you ever done that? I put in things like one free back rub, cook a meal, breakfast in bed and doing a load of laundry. This gift was both the easiest and the hardest thing to give.
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Have you ever noticed how when you turn the porch light on in the dark, within a short time, the moths and other insects are drawn to it? You couldn’t keep them away if you tried. It’s as if the light yells out to them, “Hey you! Get over here!” They find themselves unable to resist it.
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Do you remember the Dr. Suess story about Horton sitting on an egg for Mazie and hatching it? Well, if you don't, I'm going to spoil the story for you; Mazie was devastated to see what came out of her egg.
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In the 19th century, French scientist Louis Pasteur discovered sickness was spread through microscopic organisms called germs. Of course, now we know all about germs, just ask any mom who faithfully douses her children with alcohol rub every time before they eat out.
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