Showing items filed under “Ralph Sawyer”
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Let me stop you right there before you fill in the blank...and fill it in for you...a lover of my country.  As I grew up in Texas, then Oklahoma, my education was replete with teachers and fellow Americans who loved their country.  While most were quick to make note of the many challenges and problems we still had...there had been no nation so blessed by God which had in turn been a blessing to so many people.  The people I grew up around, regardless of their color or gender or ethnic background had a deep love and respect for our Nation and were unashamed to say so.

If you have a little trouble remembering why we are so blessed to live our lives in America...for there has been an onslaught of negative and derogatory assessments given by the liberal media over the last 20-25 years...let me remind you of some of the wonderful traits of the people of America...for in the end is the people that make up a nation.

Because we are a nation founded upon the ethical and moral principles of the Judeo-Christian faith and the Lord God of the Bible, our foundation has been rock solid.  We have been a nation of people under God.  While not everyone in our nation has professed Christ or followed Christ, the foundational principles, both moral and ethical, based upon the Scripture and found throughout our founding documents, led the people of our nation to develop compassionate hearts with the intent to pursue the dream of freedom for all people.  That American dream, pursued by the writers and signers of the Declaration of Independence was rooted in the Bible.  The proclaimed freedoms of that document seemed impossible at the time to be able to be achieved according to the wisdom of the nations of the world.  And yet, I would say, from the beginning, the dream of freedom for all had been a beacon of hope and encouragement to oppressed people all over the world.  For in spite of our failures and faults, of which there are many, thousands are standing in line all over the world trying to get to America.  There is a reason for that.  We should remember that.  You may have noticed that if people do not like us, we have no electric fence trying to keep them in.  Perhaps we should resurrect that old slogan.  “America, love it or leave it”.  I am thankful to live in a nation that pursues freedom for all.

Because of our foundational beliefs, the people in our nation, on the whole, have proved to be the most generous nation in the history of the world.  America has shared her faith and her wealth with the distressed and hurting throughout the world.  If there is a famine, tsunami, earthquake, a flood, or any list of distressed or disasters, the people of America are touched in the heart and have rushed to those people in need with compassion and help.  We pour billions of dollars each year into helping those who are in need.  I’m thankful to live in a nation that is marked by that quality.

I am thankful to live in a nation that for the most part seeks to identify and deal with the problems she faces.  With a free press and open communication, and because of that the whole world is aware of our sins, we do not sweep them under the rug, but in time, we address them, and seek to correct them when needed.  If poverty exists, if racial tensions erupt, if riots occur, the whole world knows.  Some nations seek to hide their issues.  We do not. Dissent is permitted.

If fact, dissent is one of our most cherished rights.  In many countries of the world it is forbidden, but not in America.  Constructive dissent (heavy on the constructive) is the hallmark of our priceless freedom.  Yes it is true, in our day there is a danger, for when dissent becomes high jacked by those with questionable intent and violence become the rule of the day, it is no longer dissent but has become anarchy.  As Americans, for the most part, we reject violence and the erosion of our liberties under the guise of dissent that promises all things to all people but delivers only chaos.  I am thankful to live in a nation where we have this freedom.

You know, after World War II, we were at the pinnacle of our power and our strength.  No other nation had nuclear weapons.  We could have tried to become the new Roman Empire by conquering the world, but instead, the people of our nation, Americans, never thought once about that pursuit.  It just wouldn’t fit in with who we had become, with the foundational values, derived from the Judeo-Christian faith, instead...we voluntarily stepped down and started rebuilding the lands and the economies of our enemies.  I am thankful to live in a nation characterized by one of these ethics, found in Romans 12.

 Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10  Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11  Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12  Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. 13  Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. 14  Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15  Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16  Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. 17  Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18  If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 19  Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20  To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Romans 12:9-21 (ESV)

I know you can come up with a list that far exceeds the one I have shared...there are so many reasons to love our OKAY to love your country and to salute it.  The Scriptures are replete with the admonitions that instructed believers to show and give respect to their leaders and the nations in which they lived.

Salute all them that have the rule over you, and all the saints. They of Italy salute you. Hebrews 13:24 (KJV)

We can be thankful that at this time we can still turn to the only book that can provide the answers to the questions of life...the Bible.  It will help us to face our failures and faults so that we might continue in our weakness and frailty to depend upon God and love Him with all of our heart and love others as we love ourselves.

No nation or people are taller than when it is on its knees before God.  Thanking Him for His blessings and knowing that a spiritual revival in our nation could solve the many problems and challenges we face as we pursue the dream set forth by our forefathers so many years ago.

You can be a blessing to your nation by rededicating yourself to the Lord Jesus. Pursue the Word of God and the Savior of the World, Jesus Christ, by which we are truly set free.  Free to love, free to serve, free to overcome, free to live its fullest.  Free to be thankful for where we live.

Take a little time this week and be thankful, and unashamed, and honest, and on this Independence week declare your dependence, with gratitude, upon the Lord God Almighty. May God bless America!

Posted by Ralph Sawyer with
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On the edge of my seat again waiting for the aspiring entrepreneur to make a decision about whether or not they were going to take the offer given to them by one of the investors that sit on a panel of investors who are looking for businesses they can hook up with and make a lot of money.

When I’ve watched “Shark Tank” I’ve been amazed at the variety of product and business ideas that people have come up with...people have a lot of smarts and a lot of talent and have really come up with some good opportunities for investors to invest in.  Of course, the goal for the investor is to hook up with someone that will turn their investment of money into more money for them.

 For the entrepreneur, they must decide how much of their company they are willing to give up to the investor, and soon to be partner, for the money they are asking for.  It appears that, for the most part, the more money that is requested by the entrepreneur the greater percentage of their company must be given to the investor. 

They ask for a certain amount of money...say $500,000 and in return they will give the investor 10% of their company...then they pitch their product or business to a panel of five or six investors and then the negotiations begin...sometimes no investor wants any part of the business...sometimes all of the investors are trying to make a deal and they compete against one another to secure the business partnership.

The investors bring a lot to the table, not just money, but as a partner helping to steer the new businesses in the right take the next step of make the most money.  It’s good for the new business owner and of course, good for the investor, as they want the best return they can receive from their investment of time and money.

When the entrepreneur has a very valuable business and several investors are interested they must decide what it’s going to cost them to receive the investor as a partner.  How valuable are they...what benefits do they bring...why should they commit themselves to that partner.  Is it worth the cost?

The investor wants to know that their new business partner is going to give 100% of their time and energies to the company...they want to be assured that they will do their best to grow the company and make money.  That’s their end game...more money.

Usually, the investors ask for more of the company than the entrepreneur started our example, they might ask for 20% of the company for the $500,000 and then a decision must be made.  Are they, the entrepreneur, willing to enter into the partnership with the investor...where they will be on the same team from that point forward?  Are they willing to part with the 20% of their company...the cost...for the benefit...the $500,000?

Some people just can’t make the decision...they are paralyzed...they just can’t seem to understand the value of the investor to their company...or they just don’t believe the investor brings that much value to their company and say “no” to the offer.  So they freeze and lose the deal or they just say “no” because they don’t see the value...and they must go it on their own for the time being...when...going it on their own... just hasn’t been working good enough...or they wouldn’t be there trying to make a deal and get the help and experience they so need.  They just can’t or won’t make the necessary commitment that is necessary for business’ success.  I don’t know how many times I’ve yelled at the T.V., “C’mon man...take the deal...are you crazy?  You’re turning down just exactly what you need!”

But I must admit I sweat just as much and sit on the edge of my seat just as often when I observe people like you and me when we are unwilling to make the necessary commitment to enjoy abundant life...we turn down just exactly what we need from Jesus Christ.

Jesus said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10 (ESV)

Just think about some of the highlights that Jesus offers!

  1. ..eternal life in heaven.
  2. Answer to the questions of life.
    1. Where did I come from?
    2. Where am I going?
    3. What am I here for?
  3. Abundant life.
  4. Family

Just think about what it cost Him to be in the position to make that offer... He gave His life by dying on the cross as a substitute for us, satisfying the just demands of a righteous God...that He might provide a way to heaven...when there was no other way.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6 (ESV)

Just think, He offers us life...we die without Him...and then He promises to never leave us or forsake us so that we know how to make the most out of the life He has provided.

But so many...just can’t or won’t make the decision to receive the free gift of eternal life...and follow Him as a disciple.   They’re afraid of what their commitment to Him might cost.

And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. Luke 9:23 (ESV)

I sit on the edge of my pew and I’m screaming inside...”C’mon man...take the’re turning down exactly what you need in your life.

How about you?  Have you taken the offer...or still just considering...a disciple of Christ...or not...which means you just have to go through life on your own...How’s that working for you?

Make a commitment!  Commitment to an investor is scary...when you don’t trust the investor.

Do you trust Christ enough to commit to Him...for salvation...and for living life?

I’m sitting on the edge of my seat,  “C’mon’s not even a four letter word...don’t turn down exactly who you need for living your life to the max.

Posted by Ralph Sawyer with

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