Month: June 2013

Nik Wallenda, Confidence in Christ, and Assurance of Salvation

I was doing my weekly 3 minute review of what I’m supposed to consider important (scanning the news headlines) when I came across an article and video that actually made me open it in a fresh tab.

Nik Wallenda walked across this wire and became the ‘first person to cross the Grand Canyon on a type wire’.

Before I even read the article I started contemplating deep things about myself.  Would I ever do this?  Though I walk with Jesus, do I really have assurance of salvation (ie. If I were to fall from that wire, would I end the fall in heaven?)?

Then I watched the video and was interested to note that most of what he was saying while he walked was “Thank you, Jesus.”  Apparently Nik has assurance of salvation.  Many Christians would probably come down on me hard for encouraging such irresponsible behaviour and quote the scripture, ‘”Thou shalt not test the Lord thy God.”  To them I would say, “When was the last time thou stepped out of the boat and walked on the water?”

The act Nik performed might be perceived as insanity, but I suggest that we evaluate whether some of the things we do are insane.  Some people are insanely safe.  They hate their day jobs but they keep them because it’s safe.  They have always wanted to start a business or try something different but it’s ‘just too risky’.  I especially see this with government employees.  Many of these people take these jobs and all the associated nonsense because they perceive their path as the wiser and safer path (Pension, benefits, job security, etc).  I serve a lot of these fine folk coffee every day and last month another wave of cuts hit their department (it hit at least two major Federal Government departments in our building) and most of them are watching their lifetime colleagues getting picked off one by one – not my idea of safe or stable.

But not our Nik Wallenda.

He, on his own accord, got out of the boat and started walking. Nick took the ‘unsafe’ path and lives to tell about it (with videos on You Tube to prove it) while the rest of us watched from the sidelines.

Good for you, Nik. As tempting as it is to run back to the safety of solid ground, you have inspired me to continue in faith – not only down the narrow and difficult path of life with Jesus – but also in every part of my life so that one day I, too, might be able to kiss the solid rock of security on which I stand and look back on the exciting journey with satisfaction of a life well lived.

 

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Bangus Spanish Style

I’m trying to grow up.  Really, I am.  The problem is that I keep running into things that make my inner 12 year old laugh.  Thanks to a Spanish company, I’ve immatured again.

This blog is only really funny if you are Korean or if you have studied Korean a bit.  It also may qualify as funny if you are into linguistics.  If you find bodily humour or toilet humour funny, this also may be acceptable to you.

In Korean, the word for fart is ‘bangoo’ or ‘bangu’ – the great part is that I don’t know how to Romanize it.  Here is the straight Hangul for you if that helps you:

방구

So, let’s see the different kinds of bangus this company produces:

As you can see from our featured image and the gorgeous lady, you can get Gourmet Bangus.  You can tell by looking at this striking lady that she knows Gourmet Bangus and won’t settle for less.

There are also the Spanish Style Bangus.

 

bangus_spanish_style

 

Don’t forget the Bangus that come straight from the Belly!

 

bangus_belly

 

But without a doubt, this one made my inner 12-year-old crying and gasping for air from laughter.  I’ve since recovered.  I hope your inner Korean 12 year old will laugh as well.

 

bangus_chunks

 

So, forget ‘Oppa Gangnam Style’.  This is “Bangu Spanish Style!”

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$5.81

Do you like the title of this post?  I want that number to be burned in your memory.  It’s very important.

Yesterday a customer came into my cafe and, for some odd reason, had in his possession an invoice of monies owed to the CRA.  The CRA, for those of you who don’t know what it is, is the Canadian version of the IRS, otherwise known as the Canadian Revenue Agency and formerly known as Revenue Canada (I think).  It’s the people who take from the people to give to the government… I fear I may go missing after writing that…

This customer – let’s call him ‘Salim’ to protect his privacy – was somewhat frazzled by this invoice.  ‘Salim’ had filed his taxes like every good Canadian boy and girl should do.  He was confident that he had done it correctly, yet, in his hands was an invoice for $5.81 that he must submit very quickly if he “wanted to avoid interest charges”.

Five dollars and eighty one cents.

The first thing that came to my mind was ‘Where did they get this number and why is the CRA still using pennies when they were removed from circulation months ago?”

What was on Salim’s mind was much more important.  His point was this:

“Imagine if the CRA sent an invoice for $5.81 to every Canadian?”

How many people live in this deserted Northern land again?  I think it was around 30,000,000 last time I checked…  So, $30million x $5.81 is $174,300,000!  That’s enough for a Senator’s travel expenses for an entire year!

I went home that evening and opened my mail and lo and behold one of my businesses was blessed with the very same invoice from the CRA. The only difference is that our  invoice was for $101.34 – a nice random number adjusted for commercial rates – still using the antiquated penny system.

Now on top of the $174 million they just collected from the working class, they just got themselves $101.34 from every corporation!

Salim’s point was very good.  The amount on the invoice in both cases was low enough that it doesn’t make financial sense to research the data.  It makes much more sense to pay it quickly and get it out of your life and off your to-do list.  A company would have to spend hours poring over the filing and that would cost way more than $101.34.  And what happy-go-lucky Canadian would waste even an hour trying to figure out where this $5.81 invoice came from?  Meh!

So great work, CRA.  This looks way better than raising our tax rates again. I’ll have my invoice paid by June 25th to avoid the interest charges.

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Ubuntu – How do you Pronounce the Word Ubuntu- Part 2

You may have read my first article called ‘How Do You Pronounce the Word Ubuntu?’   It got no shortage of fame and created such a controversy out there that I had to fend off the Paparazzi with my bare hands and sleek ninja style.

I like to tell myself that anyways.

What matters is that the subject is still relevant and important.  I was excited to read Disposable Joe’s post over at SighWorld because he takes this topic to the nth degree and ties it in with all the other important components of the Ubuntu project.

With Ubuntu becoming quickly a household name, Joe points out in a very humourous and educational way, why its important that we also pronounce the word correctly.

I hope you enjoy his article and here is the link.

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