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13 posts from January 2007

January 07, 2007

HIV/AIDS in Swaziland, Africa

It's only two months until my next trip to Swaziland. Our team will leave the US on March 2nd and return on March 13th. We will be visiting multiple 'Orphanage Care Points' where we have current projects, seeing new ones, ministering in baby rescue shelters, and going to several AIDS hospitals.

It is true that HIV/AIDS is one of the greatest pandemics known to civilization. "Somebody is infected with the HIV virus every 8 seconds, equivalent to 11,000 infections worldwide every day, while another 8,000 infected people die, the two agencies said in a joint annual report "2006 AIDS Epidemic Update". Read about this further at Alertnet.org.

Sub-Saharan Africa, which recorded 2.8 million new infections, still bears the brunt of the AIDS scourge, with 24.7 million people living with HIV, according to the recent UN 2006 AIDS Epidemic Report. But Swaziland has suffered worse than all of the contries with an infection rate that soars about 45%.

We'll go to partner with other great organizations, like Adventures in Missions, and rebuild the country one life at a time. Tomorrow I'll discuss the impact HIV is having on Swaziland and what it is doing to ravish the country.

January 05, 2007

What to do When You're Overwhelmed?

Septoct_06_048 So, the New Year's Resolutions have already lost their luster. You can't just change at the drop of a hat and you're still you. You're overwhelmed with life either because there is too much going on or too little going on (like my last post). What do you do?

1. You surround yourself with people in your life who will speak truth to you. On the right is a picture of me with my 'adopted dad.' A man I love, respect, and who speaks into my life regarding my blind spots. My wife is in this category and my brother-in-law.

2. You select a group of close, intimate friends who know you. You can't BS them and they will tell you who you are whether you like it or like. This creates a place of safety where you don't have to hide and you can receive the words of those who care about you. A great resource to read about how to create an intimate group of close relationships is Samson and the Pirate Monks by my friend Nate Larkin that comes out in February.

3. You make a commitment to cut out the excess bagage in your life. There's a leadership principle called the 80/20 rule. 20% of the things in your life create 80% of your success. That means 80% of the things you spend your time on only give you 20% of your successes. Find the top 20% of the things you are good at that yield the most results and cut the 80% of things that are flat-out wasting your time.

That's my New Years Resolution!

January 03, 2007

Next Year's Words Await Another Voice

Vacation_06_part3_019This is Lilly, our 3 year old. She fell asleep while we were on vacation right after she ate an early dinner. Ever feel like you need a vacation after your vacation?! That's what I'm feeling like! A New Year awaits with new challenges and new opportunities. For me it means:

(1) taking the entire family to Africa for a month

(2) writing 4 books with due dates of Feb 1, March 1, June 1, and December 1 (don't even ask!)

(3) opening China for Children's HopeChest (new site, check it out)

(4) 25 speaking engagements already on the docket

All of this means one thing is on the horizon: CHANGE!  Change_1Change is good, change is necessary, but change can be frightening. To be successful at what matters most to you in life, you have to be willing to change. What do you need to change to accomplish the goals most on your heart for 2007?

Some things will need to become a priority and some things will need to go. The big shift I will need to make this year is to learn how to live like a writer. These books aren't just going to appear out of thin air...though I secretly with they would!

This quote from Lisa's site is comforting to me: "For last year's words belong to last year's language and next year's words await another voice." - TS Eliot

Here's a toast to us finding another voice...the world is waiting!