Hope for your financial life and beyond

Remembering Boston & A 2013 Goals Update

Boston Marathon BombingHow do you respond when the atmosphere of an innocent event designed to celebrate the human spirit is shattered in a violent moment and people’s lives are turned into a nightmarish hell?

We rush to help however we can. We cry with those in pain. We give of your time and resources to those in need. We never forget.

And we move on with life. We do not let evil believe it has taken our will and our desire for freedom. We stand together. And we speak out like elite American runner Patrick Rizzo did, who when asked if he was worried about running in the London Marathon a few weeks after Boston, had this to say…

“It didn’t deter me one bit…In those sorts of situations, whether it’s an act of domestic or foreign terrorism, the idea behind that is to alter your lifestyle and tap into submission. They picked the most stubborn group of people possible [runners] to try to do that to. We put ourselves in pain for pleasure.” (ESPN – “London Shows Solidarity With Boston”)

We will keep running. We will move forward more resolute than ever before.

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Every Job Teaches a Lesson

Lifeguard Tower“In all labor there is profit, but idle chatter leads only to poverty.” – King Solomon, Proverbs 14:23

All labor brings a profit, as it should. We use that profit to provide the basic necessities for living, to purchase items we want and to create more profit by investing in the marketplace.  The desire to take care of ourselves and build wealth is a huge reason we work each day.

However, the term “profit” can convey more than just financial gain. We also use that term to describe how something is beneficial or will give us an advantage in some way. For example, it would not be profitable for me to drive in the wrong direction on the freeway. It would be deadly!

So in relation to work, personal profit could mean more than just money. Through work we can also learn about ourselves. We learn about relationships. We learn about influence, perseverance, and sacrifice. We learn, in many ways, simply how the world operates.

I’ve had eight jobs in my life and each one taught me a different, valuable lesson. So here are the life lessons I’ve learned from work, from my first job to my present one.

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How Do You Create Time to Blog?

Disclaimer: This post is part very calm rant (over my predicament), part probe (asking advice from you the reader), and part self-help (just getting this out of my mind and thinking it through so I can move on).

HourglassHello. My name is Brian. I’m a part-time blogger.

(I’ve actually never seen standards for what classifies someone as full or part-time. I just assume that because I’m not posting every day of the week that makes me part-time.)

This July 3rd, I’ll celebrate my one-year blogging anniversary. I’ve consistently posted twice a week for the past year. (Which actually was my personal goal.) On a great week I can sneak in an additional post or maybe compile a weekly roundup of awesome posts I’ve read.

I haven’t done many additional posts and no roundups recently because I have lacked the time. That’s frustrating. I LOVE reading what other people write and sharing comments in their blog world. And I love passing on what I think is good content to my readers.

I’ve seen an even more disturbing trend happen in the past month. I’m really having trouble keeping up with my writing schedule. I learned from John at Frugal Rules the importance of putting a blog calendar together. That’s been a ton of help. I’ve got a slew of stuff planned out to write on for months to come.

But keeping up with that calendar with all my other personal responsibilities is the challenge. As a part-timer this is what I’m up against:

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Ten Awesome Manly Activities

All right men…it’s manly activities time. What type of tasks, encounters or impossible endeavors make you want to give a loud Tim Taylor style grunt?

I’ve compiled a list of manly activities for some fun on this Spring Break Friday.  I may even do a few of these today. So read on and add to the list in the comments below. In no particular order here are…

My Top Ten Manly Activities

1. Running a chainsaw

It’s the ultimate in manly activities…destructive, hand held power equipment. Plus, you get to yell “Timber!” and feel like a pioneer clearing the land. My tool of choice is a 2-stroke, gas-powered Husqvarna 455 Rancher 20-Inch 55-1/2cc (with powerbox carrying case of course).

Legit Get Rich Quick Schemes

I have a confession to make. By nature, I am not a patient person. I would love to cash in on a few get rich quick schemes and have a enough money to be financially independent RIGHT NOW. Wouldn’t it be great to know what’s going to happen in the next 10 years RIGHT NOW and have all the problem issues of my life fixed RIGHT NOW?

get rich quick schemesI have learned though the years to monitor my impatience by reflecting on my faith and what God tells me about it in the Bible. Passages like Hebrews 12:1 have been especially valuable to me. In talking about our life journey it says,

…let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us…”

But it’s still really hard to live this way in a culture that stresses immediacy. And we all succumb to the pressure for instant gratification, instant knowledge, instant wealth and instant fame.

Think you are immune? Try living a couple of days without watching cable news, using your microwave and neglecting Facebook. See how you feel.

Nowhere does our culture’s value of immediacy reflect itself more than in our desire to accumulate money quickly. Maybe that is why so many are vulnerable to get rich quick schemes.

Types of Get Rich Quick Schemes

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When Was the Last Time You WOWED Yourself?

Bring Your Best

Can you remember the last time when you completely exceeded any and all of the expectations you had hoped for? Remember how it sort of left you breathless in disbelief? I had one of those days this past Sunday and boy, did it feel good.

As those of you who have been reading here for a while know, one of my goals for the year was to run a half-marathon in under two hours. I’ve been training for the Publix Georgia Half-Marathon in Atlanta since December and was pretty encouraged lately by my training times. Still, there are so many unknowns on race day…like your stomach not digesting the pre-race meal well, getting tripped by another runner or poor weather conditions, just to name a few.

While I felt prepared, you could not have convinced me a week ago that I would be able to pull off this kind of effort.

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Ways We Lie About Money

Have you ever told a little white lie about money? What might a “money-lie” look like? Here are some examples I could think of:

*Exaggerating your net worth or monthly income on a blog post.

Woman Quiet

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

*Saying you got a better deal on an item than you really did.

*Telling someone who asked for money that you didn’t have any with you to give (ashamed to say I’m guilty here).

*Pretending you gave more to a cause than you actually did.

*Hiding or covering up your spending habits. (Guilty here as well and as you can read about here).

*Failing to report income earned in cash on your tax forms.

Why are we so apt to distort the truth? I think the core of the issue revolves around three main principles:

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I’m Turning 40 – Now What?

turning 40Is it taboo to discuss your age on your blog? If so, I’m engaging in a major faux pas today as I announce that it’s my birthday and I’m turning 40. Woo-hoo! Let’s here it for all the middle age guys out there!

I’ve always heard life starts going down hill after turning 40. I’m not sure why people say that. Is it because the average life span in America is 78, so in the mind of most people, your half way home? Is it because people believe the “fun” times of young adulthood – like partying on spring break or at Mardi Gras – are over?

Or is it perhaps that your body starts to catch up with you as more aches and pains come each morning as you roll out of bed?

Now that I’m here, I’m feeling like I don’t want to buy into the pessimism of what I’ve heard.

Thoughts on Turning 40

In the past year, I’ve done three new and remarkable things:

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How Far Would You Go To Get What You Want?

Darth VaderEver been around someone who is never satisfied? It doesn’t matter how much they have they always want more. Contentment is a foreign word to them.

There is a delicate balance between being content and striving for more and the two seem to compete against one another. Being content is an inner attitude that has a lot to do with a peaceful state of mind. Striving for more is an action that outwardly suggests you aren’t entirely settled with your present circumstances.

In all honesty, I’m not sure where the boundary line is drawn. I think, however, I might be able to figure out when somebody crossed the line, like in this story.

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For the Love of Money

VaultI brought this post out of The Vault today to do two things:

1) to remind myself on this Valentine’s Day the trap that awaits when I choose to put my affection in the wrong place and,

2) to introduce a new feature on Luke1428 called “Theology Thursdays.” It is my goal for Thursday’s post to include a spiritual perspective as it relates to our responsibilities towards money, wealth and personal finance.  Hopefully that will be a blessing to you as I share what is on my heart.

So with that introduction, re-enjoy “For the Love of Money” (first appeared on Aug. 3, 2012). 


“Money money money money, MONEY!”

“Some people got to have it…some people really need it…Hey, listen to me, y’all do thangs, do thangs, do thangs – bad thangs with it.

Well, you wanna do thangs, do thangs, do thangs – good thangs with it…talkin’ about cash money…

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Stop Flirting – 20 Signs You Might be Ready to Get Serious About Money

Engagement RingFrom across the room your eyes meet. He flashes a million dollar smile and gives you a wink. He looks away and you think the brief encounter over. But then, he slyly looks back.

Your heart is racing. Clearly he is communicating something, but is this an act perpetuated on you to satisfy his amusement? Or is he testing the waters, seeing where you stand? Does he have something to offer that could change your life forever?

You’ve been preparing for this type of moment for a while now but a part of you can’t believe what you are about to do. With a twirl of your hair and a sideways nod of your head, you motion for him to join you. Without a moment’s hesitation, he heads in your direction.

What should you say when he arrives? Will others think you are crazy for going after someone you hardly know? You’ve spurned his advances before but could he be the man who will fulfill all your dreams?

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