Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘challenge’

Thomas Aquinas stained glass window.

Image via Wikipedia

I am finding more and more the richness of the Holy Bible, the more I learn the more little nuggets of truth I discover. As I was listening to Catholic Talks on CD’s (yes I know I have been on about these CD’s for days’… but I just keep finding something new in them) I have be re-wakened the the depth of knowledge each little passage contains. It amazes me that one word or phrase can contain a life changing truth.

As the owner and creator* of STATIC Solutions, a Catholic company the produces educational materials for middle school youth, I am always on the look out for new ideas, new bits and pieces of truth that can be used to excite and deepen the faith life of the youth and the adults who are charged with imparting the truth. I find that it’s not hard to find that one passage or phrase the hard part is deciding what one.

I have just started to develop some new material, I am in the beginning stage were I need to play the concept out, I need to define what it is I am looking for (or as the case maybe, what God is trying to get me to do). This process involves the selection of the main theme that is to run through the book, what basic idea or truth is the book to depart. It is a long process, one that sometimes takes months or even years, yes I have a few ideas that have been sitting in my head for years.

It’s interesting, because as I listened to the CDs I discovered that I could write whole books, teach a whole class on just on passage or phrase. The depth of that phrase or passage could fill volumes. I could take the simple phrase “I Thirst” or “You are Peter” and build a course around them. This is my new dilemma…. What phrase or word or passage do I use, how do I use it and what do I do with it.

The concept of STATIC Solutions program is to take the youth deeper in to the faith, to really look at one area, to show them the richness of that phrase or person or book. Each of our classroom books look at a subsection of the over all concepts. For example the one of the books is entirely on the Exodus of the Israelites for Egypt. We spend five sessions doing nothing but recounting the Exodus and it’s meaning to us today and it’s part in Salvation History. We dive in to the mindset of the Israelites and Mosses, we place ourselves into the moment and feel the desert heat on our backs and the aches and pains of the long walk. Our hearts break over the sinfulness of Gods people, yet we can see ourselves in the humanity of them all. It is five sessions that truly take us back in time. Each of our course books deals with a subset such as that, rather than covering the whole Old Testament in five weeks or even fifteen, we choose to create an experience that will envelop the youth, take hold of their imaginations and souls and with God grace, create a conversation moment for them.

Our philosophy is why “dump” thousands of years of Salvation History on them, it is better to give them nuggets of truth that will excite them and enlighten them, than it is to drowned them is Christian history. If it has taken the Catholic Church over two thousand years to come to Her understanding of the faith, why should we expect our youth to do it in eight years? Is it not better to give them the thirst for knowledge and truth than to drowned them in it?

So as you can see my dilemma is how to take the beauty of the book of Job and turn it into a five session gem, or to take the phrase “I Thirst” and keep it to only five sessions. The glory of God and the Catholic Church can never be contained in the mind of man, yet alone in books. Yet this is what I attempt to do, this is the calling I have answered and the challenge I am tasked with.

The CDs are examples of this, year of the speakers could have went on for hours and hours, if not days. Yet they were confined to thirty minute or one hour at most. To take the vastness of Gods glory and condense it into a book or talk… The concept is truly, well its just mind blowing.

This is what I love about my faith, the fact that each day I can learn and grow, that a passage I have heard one hundred times before can suddenly take on a whole new meaning.  That the truth of the faith keeps growing or should I say that my understanding of the truth keeps growing. That the smallest of details sometimes are the greatest of truths.

The challenges given to me to create the programs I create are a life lesson in humility and faith, and yes the CDs I listened to reminded me of this very fact. They have created in me a new desire to research and learn and to create. As the STATIC Solutions tag line reads “Educate ~ Innovate ~ Create… that is me calling and one I am willing to answer.

God Bless

Paul

Reasons to Believe: How to Understand, Explain, and Defend the Catholic Faith
1 Corinthians 15:55-57“Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?" The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Brought to you by BibleGateway.com. Copyright (C) . All Rights Reserved.

Enhanced by Zemanta
Advertisements

Read Full Post »

The path of change can lead us in to many different directions; we may start out heading towards one outcome, but end up someplace completely different. This is the risk and excitement of change; we have to be very diligent in our efforts.

 

Many times, in the process of change, we find new ways to change, or to challenge ourselves, and if we are truly open to change we will stop or walk, and explore this new challenge, we will sit with it for a time and discover its potential and its value to us.

 

To use an image to help illustrate this point, let us imagine we are taking a nature walk.

 

We are on a path that will lead us to our end, to the pick up point. Along this path, all is as planned; we walk with not concern for the path we are on is well travelled. We can enjoy the surroundings, with out really having to look at them, because we have seen it so many times before.

 

But is we where to stop and look, we would notice a new path is being formed, a path the veers off the main a little, a path that is not worn, a path that would require me to pay attention a bit more, one that may lead to danger or one that will not take me to my end, the end I originally started on.

 

But we stop, and we stand to the side, we look at this new path and see that it offers a new view, a view of the same forest, but from a different vantage point. We peer around the bend, and see what lies ahead, we tilt our head to hear the sounds, and draw a big breath of new air.

 

The risk is great, but the challenge is new, and the adrenalin is rushing. But now we must choose, do we stay on the same path of change we have been on, it has served us well, and we know the way, and the end is near, or do we forge a new path to change, one that may lead us in directions we did not know or understand.

 

Challenge is risk, the end point can move, but growth only happens when we feed it something new.

 

Paul

Read Full Post »

Delays and roadblocks are a part of life. We have to deal with them in all that we do. Delays at work, but we still must meet the deadline, roadblocks to getting the new house or remodeling the old.

 

Sometimes it feels like that’s all we have to deal with, like we spend more time walking around a roadblock, or catching up from a delay then we do actually doing the job at hand.

 

And to some degree that is true, but how we look at them makes all the difference in the world.

 

At my present job, I am constantly delayed, due to software or hardware issues, but my due date never moves, it is the only constant.  I can choose to see this as an annoyance, or an opportunity. In truth, sometimes it is both, but it’s the opportunity I want to focus on.

 

Delays and roadblocks can cause you frustrations, but they also can push you to your limits, and challenge you to out perform yourself. Make you think outside the box, and allow you to attempt things you would have never thought of before. This to me is the exciting part about roadblocks and delays.

 

Sure, I could choose to use them as a reason not to get my work done, but in the end that only hurts me, and my reputation. By choosing to see them as a challenge, a way to stretch my ability, and an opportunity to think outside the box, I am personally growing, and potentially creating something very new, exciting and different.

 

Sameness builds in to itself sameness. So the opportunities that road blocks and delays offer are wide and veered. In my own experiences, some of the best things I have created have been out of frustration due to time constraints because of delays and roadblocks.

 

I have had many in my current job, and have one now, I know I will be frustrated and a little annoyed, but in the end, I will use that energy to create something new and exciting, something I will be proud of.

 

In the end, it’s all how you decide to handle the roadblocks and delays they can be a blessing or a curse, how do you want them to be for you?

 

Paul

Read Full Post »

We all have dreams, some big and some small, but they are dreams just the same.  Sometimes our dreams are realistic and some are not, but they are still dreams.

 

Dreaming is a part of life; we need them to survive, to grow, and to prosper. If we had no dreams, we would have no electricity, or cars; or much of anything else. We need them to challenge us and to help us grow.

 

I have a dream, one of the best know speeches ever given, and it was a great and grand dream, one the helped a nation to grow, and is still feeding the nation, and challenging the nation in to greater things. But the dream had to be there first, the dream has to stir the nation’s conciseness and excite the minds of all, the dream had to add new colors to the nations fabric, adding vibrancy to cloth of America, but it had to be a dream first, a dream in one persons mind.

 

I to have dreams, ambitions and callings, some to greatness, others to mediocrity, but dreams all the same, some of them have taken root in my being, others have flown off on there own, and yet some never seem to start, they just float in the pool of the mind, waiting for what I do not know, but they are there.

 

It is the essence of dreaming that makes us who we are; it is the ability to create, in our minds, that allows us to create in the world. It is the dream that allows us to be all that we are created to be.

 

Dreams are important to who we are, they define us, and help to create us, and the world around us. They are the essence of who we are.

 

We need to keep dreaming, big and small, we need to keep reaching for that moon beam, we need to lift ourselves up high, and call others to us. We need to allow the dream to penetrate us, deep in our core, allow it to motivate and move us. Allow it to rework our hearts, minds and soul. We need to allow the dream to color our life with fantastic vibrant colors, to shine for all to see.

 

I have a dream is a powerful statement, one that has changed our world, and colored existence for the better, but the dream can not stop there, it must be carried on. We must add to this fabric of life our own thread, our own pattern and colors. We must create a patchwork of dreams that will dazzle and stun all who see it. We must live life full of colors full of dreams.

 

We are here on this earth to create a quilt, and each square, each thread and color must be defined by each and every one of us, and each square must be unique and personal, but shared by all.

 

So dream big or dream small, the size of the dream doesn’t matter, just dream; Add your pattern to the quilt of life, add your colors and stitch and help make this world a better place.

 

Start today, and create a reality we all can prosper and live in.

 

Paul

Read Full Post »