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EAGER TO LOVE!
Book Review
by DAVID BRADSHAW

"As I grow older, I pay less attention to what men say. I just watch what they do."
-Andrew Carnegie

"Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words."
-Francis of Assisi

ETL INTRODUCTION

In Eager To Love: The Alternative Way of Francis of Assisi Friar Richard Rohr, founder of The Center for Action and Contemplation, weaves together a beautiful and healing spiritual tapestry revealing the 'secret' of Francis of Assisi's way of simplicity born eight centuries ago.

This is the third book by Rohr I have read in the last two years, following "Falling Upward" and "Yes, And..." - all of which I have found exceptionally transformational.

Eager to Love offers us important revelations and reflection upon the living legacies of Francis of Assisi and the courageous followers of his simple yet profoundly inclusive "sidewalk spirituality".

My attraction to Rohr's latest work is from the perspective of a seasoned believer seeking to learn more about Francis' "experiential knowledge of spiritual things" (aka first-hand revelation) which Rohr refers to as Christian "mysticism" in a most positive way.

My spirit tells me that this Franciscan way of love, paved by history's most famous and beloved "Saint" Francis, may also serve as a fresh path for many to explore today.

Rohr's passion and life mission is to help others develop a holistic worldview patterned after Jesus Christ simple, yet counter-intuitive, message embodied in the Sermon on the Mount, as walked out in Francis of Assisi's amazing life of contemplation and action.

"Only when we are eager to love can we see love and goodness in the world around us ... Integrity is often a willingness to hold the dark side of things instead of reacting to them, denying, or projecting our anxiety elsewhere," says Rohr in the Introduction.

THE ORIGINAL PROTESTANT

"Francis of Assisi has been called the original protestant," says Rohr, reflecting on the his positive influence upon believers and unbelievers alike.

The words and life of Jesus and Francis challenge us to live in a world without sacred vs. secular distinctions, to see "everything as a revelation of the divine - from rocks to rocket ships," as Rohr puts it.

"Both Jesus and Francis did not let the old get in the way of the new, but like all religious geniuses, revealed what the old was saying all along," writes Rohr.

Readers who accept the death and resurrection of Jesus are called to move beyond mere understanding and thankfulness of this "Divine Mystery" to the next level of setting out on this same path of servant leadership for themselves.

THY KINGDOM COME, MY KINGDOM GO

"Our Christ 'reigns from the cross, but with a new kind of power that looks and feels like total weakness, just as all human suffering and humiliation does. Only those who have joined him there and come out the other side, like Francis and his authentic followers, will understand this. They 'rule' from the edges and reign from what is no longer the bottom," Rohr concludes in Chapter 2, "A Happy Run Downward."

FoA I agree with Rohr's conclusion that most Christians at best split their loyalties between God and Caesar - with our minds controlled by seeking money, status and power. This can distract us from seeking first His Kingdom in our lives, day by day, moment by moment.

"When you agree to live simply, you have time for spiritual and corporal works of mercy because you have renegotiated in your mind and heart your very understanding of time ... time is not money anymore, time is life itself," challenges Rohr.

LOVING THIS DIRTY OLD WORLD

Our worldview frames everything we see, think and believe. If our worldview is clouded with a perspective that the world is evil, we will see evil all around us. If we can learn to see the world (and all the people on it) as sacred and lovable to God, it will change our mindset forever. Our world is no longer "us vs. them", but rather, "us and them".

Francis of Assisi strongly held this inclusive worldview of the 'sacramentality' of nature and all God's creatures. While much of the religious/evangelical world can hardly wait to escape this "dirty old world" to arrive in heaven, Francis saw the splendor of God's present earth as a reflection of the heavenly goodness and love to come later.

"Franciscans, Amish and Quakers are the Christian groups with the least negative baggage in Western civilization," says Richard, due to their emphasis on "contemplative, simple living and peacemaking foundations."

PARTICIPATIVE SEEING & ABIDING

Chapter Five, "Contemplation: A Different Way of Knowing" was one of my favorites. Echoing Doug Sherman's message of "Trading Up" from a self-centered to a God-centered life, Rohr writes "contemplatives surrender some of their own boundaries and identity so that God an see through them, with them, and in them - with a larger pair of eyes."

"Francis told us that we needed to 'give people reasons for spiritual joy' and not just quote commandments to them, write Rohr. "Francis and Clare exemplify a truly 'beautiful morality' ... which shines forth when someone does an imperfect thing," in sharp contrast to rigid moral conclusions so often held by Christians.

"Franciscan poverty" is not just a life of simplicity, but also the practice of letting go of our small vantage point," writes Rohr, recognizing we are powerless and ineffective unless we are abiding in the vine of Christ (John 15:6).

SAYING "YES" TO PARADOXES

"In the practical order, contemplation gives us an inner capacity to live with paradoxes and contradictions ... a new way of processing the moment ... the ability to incorporate the negative ... accepting absurdity and tragedy as part of God's unfathomable agenda," says Richard.

Rohr views the ability to hold and overcome life's many paradoxes as the beginning of training in Francis inclusive, unified or contemplative living, as opposed to denying paradoxes. "Conversion, therefore, is not joining a different group, but seeing with the eyes of the crucified."

"Neither logic nor law can fully achieve this, but participation with and in God can. (This does not make logic or law unnecessary; they are simply inadequate to the work of transformation) ... this mean we all must learn to offer life a foundational 'yes' before we offer our critical 'no'. If we start with no, it almost impossible to ever get back to a full yes." Bonav

Rohr quotes one of Francis most articulate followers, Bonaventure (1217-1274) who sums up how contemplatives "know" things: "The soul itself is an image of God, to which God is so present that the soul can actually grasp God, and is capable of possessing God and of being a partaker in God."

In fact, the book devotes an entire chapter to discussing how Bonaventure "was to Francis what Paul was to Jesus," providing the church with a complete theology and systematic worldview based on integrating contemplation with an extremely active life.

FROM WORSHIP TO IMITATION

"You only know as much as you do," Francis told his first friars. "For Francis and Clare, Jesus become someone to actually imitate and not just to worship. Francis starting place was human suffering instead of human sinfulness," reveals Rohr.

The writing of Francis reflect this; using the word 'doing' rather than 'understanding' 175 times to five. 'Heart' is used 42 times to one use of 'mind'. Love is used 23 times vs. 12 uses of 'truth'.'Mercy' is used 26 times while intellect is used only one time.

"This is a very new perspective and different from the highly academic theology that would hold sway for the next thousand years," explains Rohr. "Francis knew what many educators have now proven - that humans tend to live themselves into new ways of thinking more than think themselves into new ways of living."

FRANCISCAN SPIRITUALITY - THE THIRD WAY

"The Franciscan worldview is not heretical, nor is it a threat, except to the comfortable and the careerists ... Francis put almost all of his attention on issues of daily practice, humble relationships, and a way of life rather than on Sunday recitations of creeds. When you honor both power and powerlessness, you quite simply come up with a third something, a very different kind of power," says Rohr.

"Good Franciscan spirituality always tries to maintain three freedoms; 1) God's freedom to do what God wills, 2) Maintenance of structural freedom, and 3) Contemplative prayer to maintain inner, psychological freedom to do the first two."

"Our emphasis on orthopraxy (simplicity, nonviolence, living among the poor) and in our thought ('univocity' of all being, freedom of conscience) found Franciscans on the invisible edge of the Church, which is exactly where Francis wanted us to be."

Rohr systematically reveals the heart of Francis. "I hope you now see more clearly how Francis cannot be written off as a mere soft and sweet figure ... he was deliberately and consciously undercutting the entire 'honor/shame system' on which so much of culture, violence, false self-esteem and even many of the ministrations of church totally depend."

"This message of simplicity, smallness and downward mobility is rather clear in the Christian scriptures (Phil. 2:7, II Cor. 8:9) ... No wonder Francis called water 'Sister Water, so useful, lowly, precious and fair!' Water always and forever seeks the lower, and even the lowest, place. We let water - the simple universal element necessary for all life - be our teacher here."

DRAWING OUT 'SISTER WATER'

Proverbs 20:5 says "The purposes of a person's heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out."

siswater The insight from wise Christians, such as Richard Rohr, helps to draw out our deep waters and a deeper sense of purpose. We are all called to serve the purposes of God in our spheres of influence, including family, friends, neighbors, and community. The first way we draw the hidden purposes out of others is by learning to be a good listener ourselves, as we see modeled by Francis of Assisi.

Spiritual leaders and practitioners on the front lines of helping transform our "serve me" culture into a "serve others" culture, seek to dig into our rich history to reveal our deepest calling - the pearl of great price - which is to fall in love with our loving Creator and all of His creation anew daily.

In Matthew 5:3-9 Jesus offers us seven basic rules for Kingdom living on earth ...

1 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
2 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
3 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
4 Blessed are they which hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
5 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
6 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
7 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

Francis of Assisi based his 'rules' upon this solid foundation and so should we. Notice Jesus 'rules' carry a special blessing and promise. The power to live like Jesus (and Francis) is never generated by our own efforts, but rather upon the finished work of the cross. Humility, empathy, meekness, righteousness, mercy, purity and peacemaking are all unmerited gifts of God. Praise His name!

Millions of Christians around the world - catholic, orthodox and protestant - today are seeking fresh ways to reach this generation with the message of God's unconditional love. We are called to reach up, reach out and reach back over two millennium to discover what has gone beautifully right ... even when we think it has gone terribly wrong. Richard Rohr's writings are a gift to the body of Christ to prepare for a great season of Kingdom expansion ahead.

Thanks Richard! Your book has made me more eager to love!

P.S. Here is a link to watch a good movie version of Francis of Assisi.


10.9.14 - Celebrating life ... in death!
by David Bradshaw

On Wednesday my wife Leoma and I, together with over 1,000 tear-full souls, celebrated the life of Jeff Allaway Jr. - a life well lived. Jeff Jr., son of Jeff and Ronda Allaway (Big House Inc. ministry) did not survive a fatal car accident 2 weeks ago, yet his spirit lives on in the lives of the many thousands he touched over his two brief decades on earth.

JeffRIP From the moment we arrived at the Marquee Theatre (a popular concert hall in Tempe) it was clear this would be unlike any memorial service we've ever been to. There was a spirit of celebration from the opening song/video slide show, to the heartfelt testimonies from family and friends, to the closing invitation by Jeff Sr.

"It only takes a mustard seed of faith ... Jeff Jr. can't make the choice to come to you today, but you can make the choice to go to him ... to know beyond a shadow of doubt that you will see him in heaven," said pastor Jeff passionately as he held back tears for the loss of his only son.

"This is what Jeff would have wanted me to say ... and I know he is looking down from above rejoicing right now."

We mourn with Jeff and Ronda Allaway the loss of their precious son. We also rejoice that in Christ we can learn how to celebrate life - even in death.

Jeff Jr. was and is a perfect example of the "mustard seed of faith". Although it fell to the ground it will ultimately produce a beautiful tree which will multiply one-thousandfold. Let the kingdom multiplication begin!

It will be interesting to see how our loving Lord uses this tragic event to serve as a springboard to a next season in the Allaway's life of Kingdom service.

Like the U-shaped curve seen in all of the natural world, so our lives are formed by a series of fallings, losses and even failures - in preparation for the next rebirth, rising, gains and successes. "The way up is the way down," writes Franciscan author Richard Rohr in Falling Upward.

Pastor Jeff reminds me of the another unorthodox troubadour from the 13th century - St. Francis of Assisi - who had a driving passion to take the message of God's love for all creatures (especially the poor and downtrodden) to the highways and byways.

"Be praised, my Lord, through our Sister Bodily Death, from whose embrace no living person can escape. Woe to those who die in mortal sin! Happy those she finds doing your most holy will. The second death can do no harm to them." - St. Francis of Assisi, Canticle of Brother Sun


9.25.14 - It is Well With My Soul -Horatio G. Spafford, 1873

Here's a 150-year old hymn done instrumentally by popular recording artist Josh Wilson, who will be performing at AZHungerWalk on Saturday, Sept. 27th. Leoma, Braida and I are participating in this great cause. Sing or hum it with me...

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Refrain:
It is well with my soul,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin - oh, the bliss of this glorious thought! -
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, 'tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

Fare Thee Well - Phil Keaggy


9.4.14-The Kingdom Manifesto -Wolfgang Simson

[Note: I have known Wolfgang Simson for many years. He is a man with a prophetic voice to the body of Christ. His last groundbreaking book "Houses That Change The World" helped millions to rediscover the simple truth. Please ask the Spirit of God to help you grasp God's Kingdom in his new copywrite-free e-book. I know I will.]

Introduction to The Kingdom Manifesto

TKM Many people dream of God. But what does God dream of man? What is his vision for his future with mankind?

His vision can be summed up in three parts:
* Walk with them
* Be their King
* Marry the bride

Walk with them. The book of Genesis describes God as the creator who loves to communicate with man, made in his image.

In the beginning of mankind's history, the Garden of Eden was the idyllic setting for the peaceful, relaxed and protected community of God with man. This is where God would openly speak and even walk with Adam and Eve, like friends.

This original, direct, face-to-face communication between God and man existed as long as humans obeyed God. When they failed, that innocent, immediate, face- to-face communication with God was lost. The innocent friendship between God and humans dramatically stopped. Man tried to walk without God - and has been lonely ever since.

But not only did man miss the walks and talks with God in the garden, God also missed these times with his human creation. The Bible mentions only a few individuals that were different: Enoch walked with God (Gen 5:24). Noah was a just man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God (Gen 6:9). The first time that God told his friend Abraham what he wanted from him, he said: I am God the Almighty, walk before me and be blameless (Gen 17:1).

To walk before God meant to live a live that has nothing to hide from God, a life of integrity and transparency, a life aligned with God and his statutes, laws and covenants. Through Moses, another friend of his, God gave the Law of Moses to his people of Israel. This was crucial, because for God and man to walk together, outside of the Garden of Eden, two conditions need to be met: a) for unholy man to meet a holy God, a sacrifice needs to be made to cover man's sin; b) man is required to follow the laws of God.

Accepting God's forgiveness and keeping God's Law was the required protocol to regain and enjoy his friendship. This friendship would include walking together again: If you follow my decrees and are careful to obey my commands. I will walk among you and be your God (Lev 26:3-12). The post- Eden message of God to man is: I want your friendship back. I want to walk with you. But if you want to come into my house, come cleaned and follow the house rules. Jesus, both Lamb and King, said the same: You are my friends - if you do what I command (John 15:14). The Bible ends with this vision coming into reality: The dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them (Rev 21:3).

The Kingdom Manifesto - Table of Contents
- What is God's vision of us? (page 2)
- What hinders it? (page 5)
- What is the Kingdom of God? (page 13)
- The 20 differences between Kingdom and Christianity (page 20)
- Kingdom Singularity (page 21)
- The solution: What do we do? (page 36)
- When Heaven colonizes earth (page 42)
- The Re-Invention of the World (page 46)
- Next Steps (page 48)

Please feel free to email your comments to me to pass onto Wolfgang.


BACK TO THE FUTURE (Church)
THE BIG PICTURE: Church Reform and Cultural Restoration

8.21.14 - by David Bradshaw,
Idea Factory Press

Two decades ago I had the privilege of assembling a unique multi-media educational resource targeted and U.S. church leaders for Open Church Ministries entitled "THE BIG PICTURE: The Shape of Things To Come", featuring interviews with over 100 top Christian leaders.

Part One is entitled "THE FUTURE CHURCH - Opening Day in the House of God - 65 Leaders Cut the Ribbon to the Church of Tomorrow". This represented our best effort to nudge American church leaders and pastors to glean from the wisdom of a multitude of godly counselors about how to transform the U.S. church into a more interactive and empowering representation of the Kingdom of God on earth. CINK

Over 2,000 copies of THE FUTURE CHURCH audio/print made it into the hands of church leaders during the 1990s and over 25,000 free copies of a one-hour radio special entitled "Christianity in a New Key: A Farewell To The Spectator Church" were distributed nationwide - including 5,000 given away at Dr. Jack Hayford's annual Foursquare Church pastor's conference.

Part Two of THE BIG PICTURE was entitled "The Warfare Series", which featured another 50 top Christian leaders offering new tools to help Christians win the battle for our mind, our money and our government by developing a more comprehensive Christian worldview. About 1,000 copies of The Warfare Series were distributed to brave Christian leaders.

We began with the premise that our theology helps to determine our ideology. In the 1990s Christians around the world were beginning to rediscovering the full implications of the Christ's completed work on the cross, aka "the gospel of His kingdom" - which then empowers us to find our true destiny and begin thinking and planing intergenerationally.

I feel now the time is right to pass on the baton of church restoration and reformation to the next generation. Therefore, I will begin posting free downloadable links to read and listen to THE BIG PICTURE for those interested in gleaning from this multitude of wise counselors, many of whom have now been reunited with the Lord of Lords in heaven.

1. INTRODUCTION 1:40 audio THE BIG PICTURE
2. THE FUTURE CHURCH 25-min. audio preview of The Future Church
3. THE FUTURE CHURCH 256 page transcript of The Future Church
4. THE WARFARE SERIES 25-min. audio preview of The Warfare Series
5. THE BIG PICTURE 25-min. sample audio from The Big Picture
(featuring Ern Baxter, Dennis Peacocke, Steven Fry and Joe Tosini)

My prayer is that these free resources will continue to multiply the kingdom of God in our generation ... and the next! Who knows, a video series including some of these leaders may be the next BIG thing God has in store to help move us all out of our comfort zone.

Meanwhile, I continue to believe that TradingUp.org offers the body of Christ with a vital invitation to change the direction of the American church - from the inside out!


Upsizing GOD Changes Everything!
A Final Life Message From a Dead Poet
8.13.14 - by David Bradshaw, Idea Factory Press

"What's right is what's left if you do everything else wrong."
- Robin Williams (1951-2014)

This week the news of Robin Williams' suicidal death stunned Americans. How could the man so gifted at making boomers (and all generations) laugh so hard they cried together, became so depressed, nearly bankrupt, and hopeless in his prime of life?

WilliamsFamily He was almost universally loved for his spontaneous creative genius that entertained us so richly for nearly four decades.

How could this man of so many words, leave all of his fans and his family without a word, without some record of why?

Perhaps ... he feared confronting his demons of addiction. Perhaps ... he feared the future, having so much past success. Perhaps ... he feared financial ruin was his fate, despite his generosity.

Whatever the reasons, he has now left the land of the living, never again to hug his wife, friends or fans, never again to tell his children how much he loves them and wants only their best. Williams is survived by his wife and his three children: daughter Zelda, 25; and sons Zachary, 31, and Cody, 22.

Fox News reports "Robin Williams' daughter Zelda has decided to quit social media after receiving "cruel and unnecessary" comments online."

Last night Leoma and I decided to watch a Robin Williams movie on NetFlix. We landed on World's Greatest Dad (2009) in which his role was a frustrated, depressed non-published author and poetry teacher who taught at the same high school his troubled, suicidal son attended.

The turning point in Williams character's life came when his son first attempted to hang himself with a belt, then later accidentally succeeded, leaving no suicide note. Without going into detail, I will say this movie had some strong resemblence to the tragic real life outcome of Robin.

One of Williams' closing lines in World's Greatest Dad expresses the deep emotions so many have felt at some point in their life: "I used to think the worst thing in life was to end up all alone. It's not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people that make you feel all alone."

Williams is not alone in his depression, about 1 in 10 or us will suffer from depression in our lifetime, and suicide rates for boomer is almost twice the average. "There is a statistically significant relationship between suicide and unemployment among middle-aged Americans," reports Marketwatch.

HELP FROM HEAVEN: LEARNING HOW TO UPSIZE GOD

"It's a wonderful feeling when your father becomes not a god, but a man to you - when he comes down from the mountain and you see he's this man with weaknesses. And you love him as this whole being, not as a figurehead." - Robin Williams (1951-2014)

Some experts identify the root cause for our cultural crisis in America is the lack of effective, functioning fathers. Father's who are loving, trustworthy and serve as a reflection of a perfect Heavenly Father.

tradingup But how can fathers learn to be good fathers if they never had a good fatherly role model? Religion and the Bible provide some signposts, but who will be our mentor?

Imagine the joy of experiencing first-hand a fresh and growing relationship daily with the Creator of the universe, your loving heavenly Father. Do you think a closer walk with God could help us all overcome thoughts of depression and even suicide? Me too!

The American Bible Society declares Americans have a major "disconnect between belief and behavior". The result: most people live their life unfulfilled and guilt-ridden.

In the summer of 2013, the ministry of TradingUp.org was launched to help solve a widespread problem which has been identified by pastors, authors and theologians for generations: Most Christians have never learned, nor been taught, how to walk with God intimately moment by moment.

"The trajectory of your whole life is determined by one single thing: the image of God that you live your life by," says Doug Sherman, founder of TradingUp.org - which is compelled to serve people who desire a more dynamic relationship with God which are hungry and humble enough to explore a new approach."

Visit TradingUp.org for a short video introduction, free sign up for twice daily email/text messages of Scripture translated into first person, free downloadable leaders guides and his 42-day devotional "Letters From God".

On Aug. 23, 2014 Doug Sherman will begin a new 6-week online series Trading Up Weekly Experience featuring new videos weekly, daily text/email messages, Letters From God and blog. If you would like to participate, please email info@tradingup.org.

P.S. In the end Williams' life message to his family, friends and fans was "I am with you to the end... and this is the end". If the root problem of the world's cultural and spiritual void which is leading so many to depression and even suicide is a lack of loving fathers who have been mentored in knowing their loving heavenly Father, then I believe the dynamic message of Trading Up is a very big part of the solution!


7.31.14 - Giving Thanks To Mom
By David Bradshaw

This weekend I have the joy of visiting my mother, brother and family in Twin Falls, Idaho to celebrate mom's 89th birthday. What do you give to someone who has it all, has seen it all, and is now preparing to enter her nineth decade of life?

Certainly more than a tee-shirt, right?

momis89 Well, I have a surprise for her that I know will bring a big smile: a special video birthday card done by four of her grand daughters and ten great grandchildren! I can hardly wait to see the look on her face! I plan to video her response and share with the whole family.

P.S. A few months ago in this space I posted this thought ... Richard Leider, author of "Life Reimagined" discovered he held the power of purpose in his hands. A simple "thank you" to his Mother on her death bed not only changed his life forever, but also christened her into the next life in perfect peace.

Interestingly, when we are born into this world, often the first words uttered by our mother is "Thank you" to God for a healthy new child. How fitting it is that our last words uttered to our mother can also be "Thank You!" May we learn to live a "Thank You" life toward our God, family and all we touch.


6.11.14 - A FATHER WHO ADORES YOU - LettersFromGod

I am a Father who adores you.

You cannot possibly imagine how much I care about the mental image of Me that you carry with you as you go about your day. Because I want the best for you, I am passionate to help you obtain an ever-expanding picture of My greatness and goodness!

tradingup As a result, I am constantly revealing My true nature to you in My Word, in circumstances and in nature, so you will know the truth. These three things are shouting to you all day. The Holy Spirit is devoted to open your eyes, and help you become confident in the truth about Me, and to help you reject lies you have agreed to in the past.

I want your first thought of Me to be as a Father who adores you. When you think of My infinite wisdom, I want you think of Me as a perfectly wise Father who cares for you. When you think of My power, I want you think of an all-powerful Father who cares for you. Each and every attribute of Mine is a descriptor of the kind of Father I am.

But it will be a daily battle for you to enjoy an ever-expanding view of Me. You will naturally wake up and think highly of yourself and low thoughts of Me. But as you choose to believe the truth and act accordingly; you will find you want to know and follow Me more!

-Your Heavenly Father

John 1:18, Matthew 7:9-11, Psalm 51:6, John 16:13

All 42 Letters From God


God's A Real Brain-Changer!
Angry, Distant, Critical ... or Benevolent Creator?
"Trading Up" means taking small daily growth steps toward greater intimacy
By David Bradshaw, IF Press

5.29.14 - Neuroscientific evidence confirms human thinking processes are positively stimulated by prayer and meditation, yet one study shows 3 out of 4 Christians (19 of 20 non-Christians) still suffer from a shrunken and distorted view of God - which seriously limits their daily relationship with a benevolent Creator.

In the groundbreaking book How GOD Changes Your Brain, Neuroscientists Andrew Newburg and Mark Robert Wallman quote a Baylor University/Gallup study which confirms the vast majority (72%) of Christians in America (Evangelical, Protestant, Catholic, Jewish) are still holding an antiquated view of God as authoritarian, angry, distant or critical.

brainpower The largest percentage (32%) view God is "authoritarian, angry and punishing." Followed by 24% which view God as "distant, uninvolved or a mere cosmic force." Another 16% view God as "critical, pushing believers to favor environmentalism and wealth redistribution."

The study found that just 23% of Christians in America view God as "benevolent, gentle and forgiving. They embrace their Creator as listening, loving and caring deeply." Sadly just 5% of the unbelieving world views God as benevolent.

In their Chapter, Does God Have a Heart? authors Newburg and Wallman conclude the missing link to a benevolent view of God is found in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex, which balances our brain's Limbic (feeling, emotional) lobe with our Frontal lobe (logic/reasoning).

The authors also conclude, Brain scans confirm the ability to construct language and thinking is stimulated by prayer and meditation - which help consciously envision God as loving and compassionate.

Solving the Disconnect Between Belief and Behavior

Recent headlines from the American Bible Society also declare Americans have a major "disconnect between belief and behavior". The result: most people live their life self-centered, unfulfilled and guilt-ridden.

The truth is that our Creator does not require good behavior to enter into a relationship, as Jesus' Parable of the Prodigal (Lost) Son illustrates. Father God stands with outstretched arms toward all willing to come to Him in humility. Our Lord rejoices in seeking us out, in giving to us beyond our wildest imagination.

Fatherlove Although formal religion often demands followers first "BEHAVE, then BELIEVE, then BELONG," Father God reverses the order, saying "You BELONG, just BELIEVE, and learn from Me how to BEHAVE".

Dr. Lowell Ponte, author, futurist and former Reader's Digest editor adds: The language of the Old Testament is Hebrew, which is a familial language. What we non-Jews hear as "Thou Shalt Not," which sounds stiff and formal, is actually the old-fashioned familiar, personal, intimate form used among family members and dear friends.

What a Jew fluent in Hebrew hears is; God the Father talking intimately to his children and saying: "Hey, kids, don't steal. It's bad for you."

God is not authoritarian. He's a parent trying to help his children do what in the long run is best for them....and that does not always mean letting them have their way. It can sometimes mean punishing them.

Think of Garth Brooks singing that "some of God's greatest gifts are unanswered prayers." Sometimes the greatest punishment God could bestow would be to let us have what we, as ignorant children, want.

My wife Ellen is going through this right now with her 88-year-old mother....now at times in second childhood, with Ellen having to become the parent. This sometimes requires asserting authority, the way a parent tells a small child not to run into the street.

That's what human love is. Imagine what it means for God - who sees beyond time and space, knowing as we do not what is best for our souls in the long run.

How many of those questioned in this study/poll think that their own parents were at times authoritarian, critical or distant? Why would they think less than this of God, unless they see His children liberated by the truth of His lovingkindness?

Trading Up From a Self- to a God-Centered Life

TradingUp.org is a ministry designed to help all Christians encounter and engage with God from Sunday morning to Saturday night by taking small steps that result in big life change.

tradingup According to founder Doug Sherman, The trajectory of our whole life is determined by one thing, the image of God we live our lives by. Rethinking your image of God from the ground up will lead to a vastly better life and dramatically shift how you see everything. That is a Trade Up.

Doug is a popular speaker and a published author of several books, his most popular being Your Work Matters to God which has been revolutionary for Christ followers in the marketplace for decades now. He has spent his career engaging God both in the marketplace and ministry which gives him the unique experience to understand and speak into both worlds.

Visit TradingUp.org for a short video introduction, free sign up for twice daily email/text messages of Scripture translated into first person, free downloadable leaders guides and his 42-day devotional Letters From God and new weekly Trading Up experience.


China Surpassing U.S. - Economically and Spiritually?
America's 142-Year Reign As World's Largest Economy Ending
5.1.14 - by David Bradshaw, IF Press

The US is on the brink of losing its status as the world's largest economy, and is likely to slip behind China this year, sooner than widely anticipated, reports the Financial Times.

china-us The US has been the global leader since overtaking England 142 years ago, way back in 1872.

"Most economists previously thought China would pull ahead in 2019." according to the Financial Times.

Why the sudden acceleration in China economic growth and deceleration in America?

"After extensive research on the prices of goods and services, the ICP concluded that money goes further in poorer countries than it previously thought."

So it all boils down to currency valuations and the true rate of inflation. Which is confirmed to be much higher in the U.S. than the official below 2% headlines. Food prices alone are up 19% in 2014.

"The IMF expects China's economy to rise 24 per cent between 2011 and 2014, while the US is expected to expand at only 7.6 per cent, China is likely to overtake the US this year."

Today in America it appears as though economic freedom and liberty are both having a near-death experience. U.S. economic growth has stalled, due to bad policy and leadership, more interested in wealth redistribution than growth.

"When small men cast large shadows, you know the sun is setting," said Nathaniel Lee, English playwright (1649-1692).

Yet according to The Great Withdrawal authors Craig Smith and Lowell Ponte, "As Benjamin Franklin suggested, we have the power to determine whether America's sun is setting ... or rising."

"Ultimately it is in our hand to take back the power from Progressives, roll back the huge government they have tried to impose as our master, withdraw and detox from the Progressive Brave New World drugging and mind control they have done, and re-boot the operating system of the American Framers."

"We need to withdraw from this Progressive toxicity in order to heal America before this poison kills our nation and our children's future," say Smith and Ponte.

To learn more about how you can become a part of the solution, please call 800-289-2646 or CLICK HERE to request a FREE copy of The Great Withdrawal.

Century-Old Seeds of China's 21st Century Revival

At the turn of the 20th century, Watchmen Nee, a persecuted Chinese house church planter and teacher wrote in his classic book Sit, Walk, Stand ..."Christianity begins not with a big DO, but rather, with a big DONE."

The London Telegraph reported last week, "The number of Christians in (atheist) Communist China is growing so steadily that it by 2030 it could have more churchgoers than America." Why? Because Christ alone offers "meaning and spiritual comfort that neither communism nor capitalism seem to have supplied."

We can clearly see over history the seeds of Christian revival are sown by humble, often persecuted men that knew how to draw near to God - willing to "Trade Up" their small life for bigger life in His presence - men such as Watchman Nee, Brother Lawrence and today, Doug Sherman, founder of Trading Up.


"Life Reimagined" - Richard Leider Presentation- MIF
4.17.14 - By David Bradshaw

After 40 years of research, conducting interviews with Americans in their 60s, author Richard Leider concludes that one of every three seniors are presently in transition to a "What Next?" phase of life he explained to a crowded theater of Experience Matters Arizona supporters last week.

Richard's book "Life Reimagined" co-published with AARP, has sparked a fresh emphasis upon preparing 50+ Americans for the next chapter of life - along with Marc Freeman, Encore.org founder and author of the bestseller The Big Shift

reimagine When asked, "What would you do differently in life?" the responses include; 1) Live more reflectively, 2) Take more risks at work and in relationships, 3) Be more authentic. His research concludes that understanding your purpose in life affects health, longevity and peace of mind.

Leider explained that increased life spans from 47 years in 1900 to 80+ years in the 21st century require major adjustments and have sparked a new yearning for purpose and productivity for this previously nonexistent season of life.

Richard discussed personal experiences with other leaders, such as biochemist turned Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard, known as "the happiest man on earth" - who teaches we can train our minds in habits of well-being, to generate a sense of serenity and fulfillment.

Leider shared his Life Reimagined "Manifesto", which includes; 1) The power of choice and freedom, regardless of circumstance, as one of his mentors Victor Frankl explains in his classic book Man's Search for Meaning.

Richard shared a very personal story of how he discovered the power of purpose in his own life when he spoke a simple "Thank you!" to his Mother on her death bed - saying it not only changed his life forever - it also ushered her into the next life with perfect peace.

Leider then shared his three pathways to finding purpose, which include; 1) Be present, by taking 3 long breathes, 2) Look for purpose moments, set a goal of impacting at least one person a day, and 3) Learn to listen, both to yourself and others.

His second Manifesto point is to "Remain curious ... seeing the world with fresh eyes." Personal isolation is fatal during important life passages. He asks, "Who is your sounding board? Who is your catalyst (alive or dead)? Who is your teacher?" He feels perpetual growth is vital.

His third Manifesto point: Take the first small step toward change. To help Leider offers his basic "Napkin Test" formula: Gift + Passion + Value = Calling (G+P+V=C) to determine if you have found your true calling.

The audience of 200+ corporate and business leaders were then encouraged to answer these 3 questions on a scale of 1 to 10; 1) Do you love your life work? 2) Do you have a passion for it? 3) Does it fulfill your core life values? If not, then you need to begin reimagining what your life could be like - and then take the steps to make it happen.

Richard closed the session with a question: "What are the two most important days of your life?" While most responded by saying "birth-day and death-day," Richard said he agreed with Mark Twain's answer: "The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why."

My wife Leoma and I enjoyed the presentation which contained good life principles, based mostly upon biblical principles and truth. We were also struck by the similarity of his central truths and conclusions with the emerging Trading Up movement we have participated with over the last year (minus the focus upon developing a growing intimacy and relationship with our perfect, loving Heavenly Father).

According to Trading Up founder and author Doug Sherman, "The trajectory of our whole life is determined by one thing, the image of God we live our lives by. Rethinking your image of God from the ground up will lead to a vastly better life and dramatically shift how you see everything. That is a Trade Up."

Visit TradingUp.org for a short video introduction, free sign up for twice daily email/text messages of Scripture translated into first person, free downloadable leaders guides and his 42-day devotional "Letters From God". Trading Up resources are complimentary to the public and designed to help all seeking to engage with God - from Sunday morning to Saturday night - by taking small steps that result in big life change!


My Father-Daughter Connection Began With Mom
4.9.14 - by David Bradshaw

As a father of four daughters, I have learned and perhaps earned the right to speak up on the topic of just how special the father-daughter relationship is.

As a proud grand-father of four granddaughters (and six grandsons) I am also discovering of the joy of fatherhood all over again, only this time with more time for reflection.

My youngest daughter (Braida Zoe) recently turned ten. She represents my last and best opportunity to put everything I've learned about fatherhood into practice. Thankfully, we have always been able to have a great time, no matter what we do together because we love and trust each other.

db-bzb Last weekend, we attended our 4th Father-Daughter dance at her school. This is a very important date that we both really look forward to. It is a time to laugh, to have fun, dance and enjoy a meal together in the company of other father-daughter "couples". My only regret: so few of her classmates attended. Perhaps it's a sign of the times, but in my mind, wild horses could not have kept me from attending.

In 2013, I had the privilege of writing a series of television commercials staring Braida entitled "The Simple Truth". We had a blast rehearsing the script, finding the right props and giving it our very best. Thankfully, the ad campaign was a big success, and is even re-running this year. But even if the ads flopped, it would not effect our special relationship.

All of my daughters know they can count on Dad to stand by them, no matter what. But ironically, this is a lesson which I first learned from Virginia, my Mother.

Indeed, the mother-son connection is also profound in many ways. My Mother faithfully stuck by me as a child, even when I did some pretty stupid things. She was my emotional encourager, protector and nurturer - during all of the critical rites of passages in life. But especially during my teenage years.

Recently my wife Leoma and I attended an 8-week class at Paradise Church on "Telling Your Story". It was a great refresher course in how to stir up and record important memories which we can cherish and pass on to the next generation, something we "elders" (50+) are called upon to do with gusto. In the last few weeks of the class our assignment was to produce a short story. I decided to do "A Tribute to Mom", which I will present to her this next Mother's Day.

As we mature we come into greater understanding of just how much our Heavenly Father truly loves us. In my view, this is the square one of becoming a good earthly father. Today if you have any doubt about just how much God yearns for a closer relationship with you personally, I highly recommend reading a few of these Letters From God written by Doug Sherman.

If you are a daughter that has missed out on having a loving earthly Father, reading Letters From God this could be the most important message of your life. Daughters, I invite you to take this quick father-daughter relationship test. [I took the test on their behalf, and discovered they're all "Loving Daughters" ... yeah!)

If you are a father, I pray you will begin to grasp just how vital it is that you invest your precious time, talent and love into your more precious daughter(s).

bzbpainting Michael Austin, author of Philosophy for Everyone: The Dao of Daddy says... "How Dad approaches life will serve as an example for his daughter to build off of in her own life, even if she chooses a different view of the world. What matters in the father-daughter relationship is that Dad seeks to live a life of integrity and honesty, avoiding hypocrisy and admitting his own shortcomings, so that she has a realistic and positive example of how to deal with the world. He should try to model a reflective approach to life's big questions so that she can seek to do the same."

Richard Leider, author of "Life Reimagined" discovered he held the power of purpose in his hands. A simple "thank you" to his Mother on her death bed not only changed his life forever, but also christened her into the next life in perfect peace.

Interestingly, when we are born into this world, often the first words uttered by our mother is "Thank you" to God for a healthy new child. How fitting it is that our last words uttered to our mother can also be "Thank You!" May we learn to live a "Thank You" life toward our God, family and all we touch.


Is the World Economic System Rigged?
4.2.14 - By David Bradshaw

This week brought some rather shocking financial news; 1) Evidence indicates the U.S. stock market is rigged - "front-run" by high-speed traders to push stock prices up in a millisecond, 2) The world's major banks are being sued for rigging the foreign exchange markets over the last decade.

For about half of Americans, stock market "rigging" news is irrelevant because they are out of the market all together, viewing their chances in Vegas (not good) as better than trading stocks.

bankershake

As for banking risks, once upon a time - in Norman Rockwell's "hand-shake-confidence" America - it made good sense to put your money in a rewarding, low interest, near-zero risk bank account.

But today it no longer makes sense to keep all of your savings in a near-zero reward, high-risk bank account. Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte have just released a 32-page White Paper on the subject that identifies 19 major risks entitled Don't Bank On It!.

For example: Did you know your money deposited in most U.S. banks could be subject to limited withdrawal and even confiscation by existing Executive Orders and International Law? Oh yes! And that's just risks #1 and #2!

For over a third of Americans this revelation is also a yawner, due to the fact they have less than $1,000 in savings. Followed by another third of Americans with less than $25,000 in savings. Bad economic policies have resulted in most Americans living paycheck-to-paycheck. Sad but true.

So, if both the stock market and banks are rigged against the public, what if any assets are trustworthy?

More and more Americans are rediscovering gold in the 21st century, which has risen over 300%. Owning tangible assets, such as physical gold and silver coins with a 5,000-year track record of maintaining value can offer peace of mind.

Back to my question, is the economic system rigged against you? The facts say yes, but each must decide on our own.

The world system is bent on wealth redistribution to supposedly help the "99%", but like the little boy who prematurely cuts open a cocoon to "rescue" the stuggling butterfly, yet unknowingly injures or kills the caterpillar's transformation process.

What is God's answer to financial struggle and poverty? Spiritual growth, personal responsibility and a strong work ethic - which are first born by the Spirit, not by the hands of men. If you, or someone you know, is battling to shed their cocoon, keep in mind, true love may require allowing them to struggle for a season, to gain strength to become that beautiful butterfly.

As Richard Rohr's book Falling Upward states, "The way up is the way down."

The beauty of God's economy is that there is no rigging. In fact, the closer we walk with our loving heavenly Father, the more He delights in multiplying true prosperity - love, joy, peace and fruitfulness.

Proverbs 3:9-10 reminds us the Kingdom principle of building wealth (giving) is opposite to the world system (taking, redistributing):

9 Honor the LORD with your wealth,
with the firstfruits of all your crops;
10 then your barns will be filled to overflowing,
and your vats will brim over with new wine.

This passage reveals the key to prosperity is linked to our willingness and obedience toward giving and good stewardship of God's resources. When we understand that everything belongs to the Lord, we can see the joy it brings to Him (and us) to give Him our first-fruits rather than our left-overs with a heart attitude of gratitude.

God wants to bless us beyond our wildest dreams, not just for our own benefit, but so that we can be a blessing to those in need around us, which is a further expression of His lovingkindness to our hurting world - which often feels life has been rigged against them.

Lord, may we learn to reflect the Good News of Your goodness which is always inviting us to embrace to a truthful, "un-rigged" lifestyle - even when our present circumstances may appear otherwise.


What Lies Beneath: Shaking Off Wilderness Years
50+ Trading Up, Living Out, Impacting the World
3.5.14 - By David Bradshaw

NEWS:
"BARNA GROUP'S new research: three-quarters of U.S. adults (75%) say they are looking for ways to live a more meaningful life. only 40% of practicing Christians say they have a clear sense of God's calling on their lives. Nearly six out of 10 all women (59%) say they are dissatisfied with their work and home balance. Women also describe themselves as stressed out (72%), tired (58%) and overcommitted (48%)." -Three Trends on Faith, Work and Calling - BarnaGroup

"AMERICAN BIBLE SOCIETY reports Americans have a major disconnect between belief and behavior. The result: most people live their life unfulfilled and guilt-ridden. Most Christians view reading the Bible as taking your medicine, which is to say less than exciting. The result: Only 13% of Christians read their Bible daily." -Trading Up: A Radically Different Way to Do Life With God

KEY QUOTES:
"For dust you are and to dust you shall return." -GOD, Genesis 3:19
"Life's two greatest fears: Being alone and being known." -JOSH WILSON
"Grant, Lord, that I may know myself that I may know Thee." -ST. AUGUSTINE
"Love the Lord thy God with all of your heart, soul, mind & strength and to love our neighbors as our selves." -JESUS, Luke 10:27
"It is impossible to be spiritually mature while remaining emotionally immature." -PETE SCAZZERRO, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality
"Our great calling for future years is ahead of us, but until we let go of past hurts in our lives, we may not understand or see the plan,"
-JOHN BONECK, 50+ The Emerging Joshua and Caleb Generation
"We grow spiritually much more by doing it wrong than by doing it right. That might just be the central message of how spiritual growth happens; yet nothing in us wants to believe it. Today we live in a "first-half-of-life culture."
-RICHARD ROHR, Falling Upward
"Two pivotal points in our Christian lives; 1) Moving from a life governed by rules, to a life focused on relationship and intimacy, and 2) Removing false images of God based on lies, then rebuilding a true vision of God based on truth."
-DOUG SHERMAN, More Than Ordinary

WHAT LIES BENEATH
"The payoff for shedding baggage of the past is to protect future generations from having to walk through some bad things. And if needed, to confront the lie that your sin is greater than God's forgiveness. To walk in our calling as our Father has intended, our eyes have to be free of personal prejudices, biases and discrimination ... seeing every member of the body of Christ as special." - John Boneck

iceberg Sadly, too many Christians have not fully integrated our spiritual walk with our emotional health. Like a visible iceberg, only about 10% of our true self is visible to others, leaving 90% below the surface, often untouched by the transforming power of our Creator - no matter how long we have walked with the Lord!

In Eph. 4:22 the Apostle Paul reminds us that we must put off the "old man" (or self) and put on the "new man" (or self) - and this is a daily process - like peeling the layers off an onion, which can bring grown men to tears.

RECOGNIZE OUR OWN EMOTIONALLY UN-HEALTHY SYMPTOMS
1. Using religion to run from God
2. Ignoring the emotions of anger, sadness, and fear
3. Dying to the wrong things
4. Denying the past's impact on the present
5. Dividing our lives into "secular" and "sacred"
6. Doing for God instead of being with God
7. Spiritualizing away conflict
8. Covering over brokenness, weakness, and failure
9. Living without limits, yet with boundaries
10. Judging other people's spiritual journey

The goal is deriving our identity from Christ - set free from our deeply held (but often wrong) beliefs still within our old self - often deeply rooted in our family and church background and the surrounding culture.

"The importance of always looking forward become more challenging in the second half of life - due to the tendency to hold on to hurts or losses from the past. When we look forward rather than backward, we see things differently than the world sees them...We declare blessings to future generations...We act as elders providing life-giving words of wisdom based on a lifetime of seeing God's faithfulness in our lives," says Boneck.

The Lord wants our spiritual house to be healthy, whole and prepared for reproducible growth in the future... a new creature - 2 Cor. 5:17. Jesus said "Come to me all you who are heavy laden and I will give you rest" -Matt. 11:28,30 ... He invites us to take His yoke, His burden is light.

WHO DEFINES YOU?
Christ's three great temptations; 1) Power/performance, 2) Possessions and 3) Popularity. Likewise, we are tempted to believe our identity is based on 1) what I do, 2) what I have and/or 3) what others think of us.

In Matt. 3:17, just before Christ's temptation by Satan, God the Father said... "And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." We each need that same foundational identity of really knowing that we are loved and are pleasing to God. We must rest in knowledge that we Belong to God, as our Belief grows, and our Behavior is transformed.

Keys to Progress on the Road out of the Wilderness ...
1) SILENCE AND SOLITUDE - slow down, feel the emotion of devotion. God is emotional, it's OK for us to be also.
2) FIND A TRUSTED COMPANION ... we can all use help in the body of Christ to get free of the pressure of the world system and our own stubborn self-will.
3) GET OUT OF COMFORT ZONE ... finding our true self can be frightening, awkward, even painful. We must confront past bitterness, hurts, grudges.
4) PRAY FOR COURAGE ... overcoming the walls that hold us back is well worth the journey to true freedom, joy, peace that transformation brings!

50+ TAKAWAYS:
- Something BIG is coming, 50+ers are a big part of it - let nothing stop you.
- When God heals our wounds we're no longer at mercy of what others think/say.
- No longer are we quickly offended or hurt, no place for evil comments to land.
- Goal to help protect younger generation from walking down wrong road.
- What might be holding me back from being all God has called me to be?
- Confessing faults to one another (James 5:16) interdependence in Christ's body.
- You don't need to perfect yourself before you can walk in authority as a Christian.
- Imagine helping 10 people remove "religion" and instead walk spiritually!
- When we bless future generations we act as elders in gate, tell of His faithfulness.
- Importance of looking upward, then outward - Write out daily declaration.
- Importance of having the generations connected to each other... why?
- Purpose: many of us will soon have children or friends facing mid-life crises.

WRITE YOUR OWN LEGACY:
Sample: "David's life was a reflection of God's forgiveness, mercy and love to his family, friends and acquaintances. He served his God-given purpose and destiny to his generation and to his God with his whole heart."


Psalm 23: Why Sheep Love & Trust Their Shepherd
2.20.14 - By David Bradshaw

Last Friday in our twice weekly company prayer/care meeting we had a special guest perfectly suited for St. Valentine's Day: Saeed Hosseini, founder of Global 365 Prayer Network, a world-wide chain of 24/7 Intercession with over 111,000 faithful.

Saeed is a humble leader with amazing God-stories to share. His testimony of God's direction in his life and walk over the last quarter century instantly engaged and resonated with everyone in our packed conference room.

Psalm23 Over the last six weeks our group has been working our way through the Psalms using a devotional summary "Spurgeon's Daily Treasury of the Psalms." Psalm 23 has been a lifetime favorite of mine, having memorized it as a child, so I was all ears.

Spurgeon pointes out that the position of this Psalm is important. "It follows the Psalm of the Cross. There are no green pastures, no still waters on either side of the 22nd Psalm. We must by experience know the value of the good Shepherd's blood shed on the cross before we shall be able truly to know the sweetness of the good Shepherd's care."

Within these six short verses we can see the heart of David expressing gratitude to God - not only from the perspective of a shepherd, warrior, and King - but from the perspective of a humble sheep in God's faithful flock.

David compares himself to a creature weak, defenseless and foolish and makes God alone his provider, director and preserver in this poetic Psalm.

The spirit of God illuminated 17 promises of God from this Psalm to Saeed that I want to summarize for you below to continue the blessing moving forward. If these promises are a blessing to you, pass them on. Let us learn to walk in them all!

1. The LORD is my shepherd (David proclaims he's traded up to God vs. self)
2. I shall not want - (I rest in the knowledge that my needs are taken care of)
3. He makes me lie down - (rest in the Lord vital, by choice or by circumstance)
4. He leads me beside still waters - (peace & refreshment from turbulent waters)
5. He restores my soul - (healing begins within, touching our mind/emotions)
6. He leads me in paths of righteousness - (Good sheep yield to His leadship)
7. For His Name sake - (All glory must be given to God or a temporal reward)
8. I walk though valley of shadow of death - (shadows temporary and distorted)
9. I will fear no evil - (His sheep are always loved and protected, no worry)
10. Thou are with me - (God is always very close, we must choose to be with Him)
11. Thy rod/staff comfort me - (love=discipline, rod=correction, staff=comfort)
12. Thou prepare table in presence of enemies - (God permits all at His table)
13. Thou annoints my head with oil - (He's consecrated us to Him for service)
14. My cup runs over - (Abundance is the norm, lack can mark seasons of change)
15. Surely ... - (In Christ we have the assurance of all of His promises!)
16. Goodness and mercy follow me - (Back against a wall? God has your back)
17. I will dwell in house of the Lord for ever - (Eternal outcome = hope today)


Empowered for the most fruitful years of your life!
Paradise 50+ New Series on "Trading Up, Living Out & Impacting the World"
2.12.14 - By David Bradshaw

50+ If you are 50+, live in the Phoenix, AZ area and interested in exploring how to release the promises of God in your life, I would like to invite you to visit Paradise 50+ on Wednesdays 7-8:30pm as we embark on a 12-week study of the important book, "50+ The Emerging Joshua & Caleb Generation" by By John Boneck, Author and 50+ Pastor at MorningStar Ministries. Location: 4242 E Greenway, Phoenix, AZ (602) 992-8999.

Almost 50+ pastor, Kurt Notehelfer, will lead the Wed. night group in worship, study and discussion. Kurt is also leading a Sunday 10-11am meeting at Paradise on a related subject: Tell Your Story!. Together with master story teller Ron Bleed, they will offer new tools to preserve important family stories and memories. "Gain insight into yourself and the struggles, choices, and forces that have shaped your life. Find direction for the rest of your life and share the wisdom and lessons you've learned."

Here is an excerpt from my book review.

INTRODUCTION

"For He established a testimony in Jacob ... which He commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children; that the generation to come might know them ... that they may arise and declare them to their children." - Psalm 78: 5-6

"To Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever." - Ephesians 3:21

By the age of 50+ your diverse experiences in the Lord - both good and bad - have brought to you through the first, second and now into the third season of life. You have been seasoned and prepared to understand your true calling - to model His blessings to all generations - and to then speak that blessing. Talk about a high calling!

At Paradise Church in Phoenix, AZ we are learning the joy of growing and walking in a fresh intimacy with our Heavenly Father, with the aid of the new Trading Up video workshop - featuring Doug Sherman and Mark Bankord helping boomers make small daily steps - from lving a self-centered life to a God-centered life.

If you are ready to gain a fresh perspective on your second half of life mission, and then coached on how to best tell the 'story of your life' with the power of the Spirit of God, then you are going to love this book!

50+ers have been called to bless future generations by creating and documenting our unique spiritual legacy, says author and pastor John Boneck.

John has done the body of Christ (and surrounding culture) a BIG favor in writing 50+ The Emerging Joshua & Caleb Generation - which is destined to give added purpose and power to Christians of every generation.

"We're not retiring, we're refiring," says John in his Introduction. The elder generations have always been called upon by God to bless future generations. This book prophetically declares blessing the generation is not only 'mission-possible' - it is truly 'mission-critical' in this hour of history!

John begins by sharing the commonalities between God's faithfulness to all generations, as reflected in Joshua and Caleb - which he sees as a big part of the clarion call and mission statement for the 50+ baby boomer generation.

PART I: Activating God's Purposes

After receiving a promise from God, have you ever had to patiently wait for the fullness of time to bring it about?

Me too. How about wandering 40 years in the wilderness, which is what Joshua and Caleb were given God's grace to endure before finally reaching God's promise land.

Forty years is almost half our lifetime on earth, but it is a blink of time in eternity. God wants His purpose fulfilled by every generation to carry on His family legacy. Caleb's purpose was to pass God's promised inheritance onto his children - and present-day Joshuas and Calebs will do the same.

"The younger generation needs us, we are called to be their covering...we are to lead the next generation into kingdom life. They can't make it to God's promised land without us," John boldly and passionately declares.

"We are called to live with the Spirit of the Lord at the center of our lives. We are called to train the younger generation in spiritual warfare...to be elders in the gate and a protection for those who seek refuge." ... full book review


Metals Continue "Falling Upward" in 2014 - RMP
1.14.14 - By David Bradshaw,
Idea Factory Press
[NOTE: Excerpt of 2014 "The Timeless Truth About Money"
32nd anniversary Real Money Perspectives newsletter]

2014 holds the promise of either building or destroying your wealth. The choice is yours.

coins Will you hold on to the paper promises of a government spending machine run amok? Or will you make the decision in 2014 to "trade up" to proven tangible assets that have withstood the test of time? Again, the choice is yours.

In 2013, financial "experts" almost unanimously declared the bull market in precious metals to be officially over. But keep in mind, this declaration has been made by pundits every year for a decade now. Each and every single time they have been proven wrong. Following each of the previous EIGHT major price corrections, gold prices have risen an average of 36%.

Gold has been "falling upward" for well over a decade and I expect it to continue as long as we have spendthrift politicians and mainstream econo-morons at the helm steering our nation in harm's way.

Gold prices have risen dramatically in recent years based on safe haven buying by individuals, institutions, and central banks worldwide as well as ETFs and other short-term speculators. Investors around the globe are diversifying their assets into the world's safest asset, gold, the new standard for measuring currencies globally.

Did you know wealthy foreigners have been buying precious metals with both fists over the last year as prices have fallen? It's true. What might investors from China, India and Saudi Arabia know that we in the U.S. could learn?

Zerohedge.com's Tyler Durden reports, "Now that gold's price is not only back at 2011 levels, but is essentially below production costs, demand out of China is off the charts. Demand in India - traditionally the greatest in the world - continues to also at unprecedented levels, although now that official purchases of gold are regulated and limited through capital controls, it is forcing the local population to smuggle in gold through the most innovative of schemes."

I remember back in 2008, when gold prices dipped over 25% from $1,003 to $746/oz. The majority of "experts" held funeral services for gold and gold bulls, yet today gold prices are now up over 62% from the 2008 low!

"Trading up" in life, and in investing, means keeping your eye on the bigger picture.

Far from the chaotic world of Wall Street speculation and manipulation, long-term investors and savers want to insure their wealth is built upon a firm foundation to withstand the storms ahead.

Properly viewed, asset diversification into precious metals should never vary dramatically. Whether you decide to put 2% or 25% into your asset foundation of gold and silver, you make the decision based upon your own comfort level.

If you already have a solid foundation of metals, sit tight and wait for market realities to eventually expose widespread market fantasy. Time is on your side. If you are sitting on a foundation of paper promises, you are at risk of big losses in 2014 as interest rates rise, stocks and bonds fall and real estate slides sideways.

Make 2014 your year to "Trade Up" to the metals of kings and princes - gold and silver! Do it for peace of mind and as wealth insurance against the further debasement of the U.S. dollar, as is covered in both The Great Debasement and The Great Withdrawal books.

When "trading up" to real money, it is much better to be a year early than a day late!

As a bonus, you will likely also sleep better in 2014 - knowing your finances rest upon a solid gold foundation...

Sweet dreams.


1.9.14 - NEWS FLASH!
My daughter Beth-Hope is escaping Wisconsin "ice-quakes" to visit sunny Phoenix and conduct a class in the art of Thai Massage.

beth-hope Thai Massage is the most ancient of all massage therapy and it is done fully clothed on the floor. During the session all major energy lines in the body are cleared and the whole body is stretched. It is a deep tissue massage plus assisted stretches. It's the best massage I've ever gotten!!

-Thai massage is very easy to learn and a great way to share time, give love and relaxation with your beloved.
-If you, or someone you know, may be interested in training, please contact Beth to schedule.
-If you would like to receive a Thai massage, please contact her to schedule.

Beth's Available Dates: 1.9.14 to 1.23.14
Contact info: lotus@beth-hope.com - (414) 916-9011


2014: The real hope on earth
1.2.14 by David Bradshaw, Idea Factory Press

2014 After the magical holiday celebrations - full of giving and spending - comes the sobering math of a new year.

Americans spent less this year in light of the financial uncertainty over jobs, healthcare and debt. ABC News reports 'brick and mortar' retailer sales fell 21% this season - despite efforts to induce Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving - while online sales ticked up 15% this year.

The world is captivated by grandiose feats of economic magic, such as a rising stock market, or housing prices driven by large doses of debt and deception. But recent polls say "2-in-3 call 2013 a bad year."

Creating class warfare and crushing the middle class is the intended political consequence of conjured economic magic, as covered in detail in The Great Withdrawal book and a new FREE DVD, The Timeless Truth About Money.

In contrast, the faith community is called to empower others to "do the math" - to count the cost (and reward) for taking every thought captive to Christ. Our goal and purpose must be to set the captives free - and to model a life measured by much more than the sum of our financial net worth.

This new reality requires a fresh vision of expanding the impact our faith has upon our lives and the others we touch. This high calling requires us to draw closer to our Creator daily for His direction of our life, to continue the process of "trading up" from a self-centered to a God-centered life, then "living it out to impact our world".

Back in 1980, The Alan Parsons Project released a hit song which I think represents a question millions of baby boomers are now asking themselves:
Where do we go from here? ...
Now that all other children are growin' up
And how do we spend our lives
If there's no-one to lend us a hand
I don't wanna live here no more
I don't wanna stay
Ain't gonna spend the rest of my life
Quietly fading away ...

Indeed, most boomers I know are not interested in 'quietly fading away', but would love some help discovering their highest calling and finding their place of service - the goal of Primelifers.org.

At Paradise church in Phoenix we will be taking incrimental steps toward this goal using "50+ The Emerging Joshua & Caleb Generation" book by John Boneck. At our Swiss America company prayer/Bible study we will begin a new devotional on the Psalms using "Spurgeon's Daily Treasures of the Psalms". I hope to have lots of nuggets of truth to share throughout the new year.

My prayer is that 2014 will bring us each to a clearer choice between darkness and light - in our personal life and in our culture. This will require more clear-thinking elders in every community and church to step in to bring healing words to those unprepared for life's "necessary sufferings". Just as King David the Psalmist finally did, "For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep, and was laid among his fathers and decayed." (Acts 13:36).

Forty-five years ago Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and social justice campaigner Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote his final book, "Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?". I believe he hit the nail on the head then, and now. Without a growing sense of intentional community, we will descend into chaos of cultural decline and confusion. Indeed, we are the hope on earth.


2014: What's Under Your Christmas Tree?
How to "Trade Up, Live Out & Impact the World"
12.19.13 by David Bradshaw

"Love is an irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired." -Robert Frost
"My riches consist not in the extent of my possessions, but in the fewness of my wants." -J. Brotherton

bzbtree As our hearts turn toward family and friends during this holiday season and we look ahead to the next year, I am reminded of a simple question Pastor Tommy Barnett once asked, "What's already in your house?"

The world tells us to spend, spend, spend to make those we love happy, but the happiness generated by more "things" always fades fast. In contrast, the joy of appreciation for what has already been given to us can last a lifetime.

Our relationships and memories transcend riches and possessions. They are our "true wealth". And best of all, they are already in our "house", if we make the choice to cherish them, rather than take them for granted.

In 2013 both my church community and business community began learning to "Trade Up" - from a self-centered life to a more God-centered life. From this new perspective we are empowered to live out our faith 24/7 - which then spills out of our lives (and churches) to impact a desperately hurting world.

What a supreme privilege it is to be called to build God's kingdom, rather than just our own. As the popular Christian song "Build Your Kingdom Here" by Rend Collective Experiment says...

"We seek Your kingdom first.
We hunger and we thirst.
Refuse to waste our lives
for You're our joy and prize.
To see the captive hearts released.
The hurt, the sick, the poor at peace.
We lay down our lives for Heaven's cause."

Yes, this year while many Christmas trees will be less full of new "stuff" due to economic uncertainty, but we can choose to highly value the special moments of time during holy-days to share the love, joy and peace of God. The truth is, the older we get, the more community we need and the less stuff.

So, are you ready to experience more of God's irresistible love and passion toward you today? To receive personal "Letters From God" full of truth and light?

I would like to share a FREE gift with you that will help you to begin taking small steps toward in a more dynamic relationship with God in 2014. It is called IgniteYourWalk. You simply sign up for twice daily one sentence inspirational messages via email or text from Doug Sherman, author of More Than Ordinary.

Today God is turning the hearts of fathers back to their children ... on earth, as it is in heaven. Trading Up will likewise turn millions of hearts back to our Heavenly Father in 2014 ... to then bless all generations!


The Restoration of Trust, Part 1 - IdeaFactoryPress
12.12.13 By David Bradshaw

Today Americans' trust in our leadership and institutions seems to be in free-fall. Polls show that 85% of Americans don't trust Congress, 53% don't trust the president, and amazingly, 66% do not trust even their fellow Americans!

Millions of baby boomers are now fearful they may outlive their savings or healthcare and become dependent upon the government, their family or the kindness of strangers.

bokentrust Starting in May 2013, Primelifers.org began boldly trumpeting good news for boomers: "Fear not!" We invite baby boomers to stand on the threshold of a new era of productivity in our lives by making wise choices, creating new habits and cultivating an inspired lifestyle.

But warnings grow ever louder of an impending "generational war" focused on economic divisions rooted in; changing demographics, slower economic growth and a government bent on burying this and future generations in debt while redistributing wealth.

The fruit of this administration's progressive "fundamental transformation" so far is rotten;

* More Americans now receive government entitlements than work full-time.
* Over 100 million working-age Americans are not working, the highest in history!
* The typical American family today earns less than they did back in 1989.
* The national debt is over $17 Trillion, plus $100-$200 trillion in long-term debt.
* Every U.S. taxpayer now has a federal debt liability of $1.1 million and rising.
* 46 million Americans still live in poverty - twice the population of Syria.
* Food stamps have grown from $17 billion to $78 billion annually!
* Welfare spending is projected to rise 80% over the next 10 years!
* Half of Americans have less than $500 in savings!
* 2/3 of today's baby boomers will likely work until they die!
* Millions more are losing their health insurance than are joining Obamacare.

Bottom line: Americans and small businesses now face the most uncertainty in decades. There is a growing undercurrent of disillusionment going on across all generations.

Younger investors as well as older savers are rightly scared that the trillions of debt dollars created by the Fed and government will end badly - pushing up their cost of living dramatically - starting next year!

timelesstruth FYI, all of this mind-jarring information is covered in great detail by former Vice Presidential candidate and national bestselling author, Wayne Allyn Root in an upcoming DVD entitled, "The Timeless Truth About Money," written and produced by Idea Factory Films. [3:00 Sneak Preview]

In this exclusive video presented by Swiss America Wayne explains how to protect yourself from this coming economic crisis by discovering seven timeless truths about money.

"The first rule of investing is capital preservation," reports The London Telegraph. "Gold is the only store of wealth that has a proven track record over thousands of years and should be an essential part of every portfolio. The market price of gold may have fallen during the year, but the fundamentals, characteristics and attractions of gold are undiminished because we remain in times of extreme intervention by governments around the world, the outcome of which is completely unknown."

Decades ago economist R.E. McMaster wisely said: "Government is always religion applied to economics." But 20th century political and economic theory has gradually separated religion from both economics and government, leaving a huge values void.

To fill the void, politicians increasingly view their role, not as elder statesmen, living within their means and concerned for future generations, but rather, as Santa Claus.

"Politicians love to play Santa Claus, but the rest of us pay the price for this....and a much bigger price tag will soon come when people around the world stop accepting Uncle Sam's credit card....and our economy collapses into another government-caused Great Depression," writes futurist and author Dr. Lowell Ponte.

"Saint Nicholas was a real historical person, the Christian Bishop of Myra in the 4th Century. He is remembered for giving gifts, especially for putting coins in the shoes of those who put them out for him. This dovetails with the Bible's description of Three Wise Men likewise giving tangible, practical gifts of spices and gold to the baby Jesus as part of Christmastime's open-hearted generosity and sharing," writes Ponte.

"I plan to follow the example of three Wise Men who followed a star - and who brought tangible, reliable gifts: the spices frankincense and myrrh, and the once-and-future universally accepted global currency, gold, which will gain value as fiat currencies such as today's U.S. Dollar collapse," concludes Ponte.

I agree wholeheartedly, which is why every year for over a decade my children and grandchildren still receive real gold or silver coins in their stockings. FACT: today's dollar is no longer backed up by gold or silver, but instead it is backed up only by confidence in the U.S. government - which is now fading fast.

So how can we baby boomers begin to restore trust and confidence - before the next financial collapse pushes us to the precipice of a complete political, social and cultural collapse? (More on this question next week.)

The truth is, Generations X, Y and Z desperately need our help to find something and someone they can trust to lead them into a brighter future, full of real hope and purpose.

I think Psalm 145:2-4 sums up this fresh call for faith-based baby boomers...

bradshclan 2 "Every day I will praise you
and extol your name for ever and ever.
3 Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
his greatness no one can fathom.
4 One generation commends your works to another;
they tell of your mighty acts."

Merry Christmas from the whole Bradshaw clan!


Lead by Serving -IdeaFactoryPress
11.29.13 - By David Bradshaw
"May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your presence, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer." -Psalms 19:14

This week youngest daughter Braida and I joined Swiss America broker Bill Durham in volunteering to serve food at a Ronald McDonald House Charity located at Phoenix Children's Hospital's Cambridge House, which provides for parents to stay with their children undergoing treatment for cancer.

bzbBillD This experience was especially meaningful for my daughter, as her first act of volunteerism. As she helped with food preparation, serving and clean up I smiled a lot, knowing this is pleasing in the sight of the Lord, as well as teaching her to find happiness in serving others in need. She succeeded in bringing smiles to many faces that night, just as we all bring a smile to God's face when we reach out to those in need giving of our time and talents to volunteer.

2013 has been a very transformational year for many of us in the third quarter of life (age 50-75). I believe God created us to become more reflective, and even sentimental - toward God, family and our community - as we age and gain greater wisdom and perspective on life.

I'm thankful Paradise Church in Phoenix is committed to empowering all ages with a fresh vision - to reach across all generations. Thanks to the life-changing "Trading Up" series by Doug Sherman, (summary below) many are learning to see God more clearly as He really is - a loving Father - in His Word, in nature and in all circumstances for the purpose of sharing our testimony of his faithfulness with the generations to come.

By the grace of God we're making daily progress 'trading up' from a self-centered life to a God-centered life. We're also understanding the awesome power our words have to speak life and blessing! It is by serving that we lead - our generation and the generations to come!

ECONOMY MAY TURN "BLACK FRIDAY" RED, SAY EXPERTS - On this Black Friday 2013 American retailers hope to move their balance sheets from "red" to "black", as Americans rush to to spend and save money - all at the same time.

"Many businesses may stay in the red all of 2013 and deep into 2014 because consumer confidence is at its lowest level since 2009," says Craig R. Smith, a monetary expert frequently interviewed by Fox's Neil Cavuto and other major business journalists.

"The reason is that Uncle Sam is Playing Santa Claus. Our politicians are spending more than $1 Trillion every year more than government takes in as taxes," says Smith, whose latest book is The Great Withdrawal: How the Progressives' 100-Year Debasement of America and the Dollar Ends.

"Our government now operates in the red all the time, funded by the Federal Reserve printing more than $1 Trillion every year out of thin air, which debases the value of our savings, and frightens tax-fearing, inflation-fearing investors and companies out of hiring more workers," says Smith.

"This Friday, I plan to use some of my gift dollars not to buy toys or trinkets, but to diversify with tangible things they can't run off a printing press as they do our rapidly-devaluing paper dollars in Washington," says Lowell Ponte, co-author of The Great Withdrawal.

"To protect my family, I plan to follow the example of three Wise Men who followed a star - and who brought tangible, reliable gifts: the spices frankincense and myrrh, and the once-and-future universally accepted global reserve currency, gold, which will gain value as fiat currencies such as today's U.S. Dollar collapse," says Ponte.

Indeed, precious metals provide an excellent gift buying opportunity, as prices are on target to end the year lower for the first time in over a decade. I especially like giving my family Silver Dollars, as they are very affordable and are usually saved vs. spent.

When people ask my advice regarding saving, I tell them to earn all you can, save all you can and give all you can. In the days ahead we may all be forced to live on less, so why not make 2014 the year to begin living below your means - instead of above your means. This will allow you to save more and give more - both of financial resources and time.


Trading Up Plus: A New Vision - IdeaFactoryPress
11.21.13 - By David Bradshaw
"Where there is no vision, the people perish" - Proverbs 29:18

Last week at our Third Quarter meeting we discussed "An Evening of Encore" as a group and what were our takeaways from the event. Response was across the board - everyone who attended felt challenged to stir up their gifts and talents to get more involved in community outreach.

Pastor Kurt outlined some of the best thoughts, including, "You will get more than your give ... We are not leaving a legacy, we are living one ... teamwork means checking your ego at the door ... and accomplishing great things together will create solutions to our community's greatest needs."

vision We also discussed the importance of recognizing and engaging in spiritual warfare in our quest to serve and support other 50+ers. The enemy of our faith trembles at the prospect of mature Christians working together to advance the Kingdom of God, period. Thus it should be no surprise that the elders in the body of Christ represent the enemy's worst nightmare.

Who and where are the church elders today? Are they the pastors, deacons, or home care group leaders? James 5:13 says they should be the first called for prayer over the sick, "Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord."

In Ephesians 4:13-15 Paul admonishes the elders to grow up, "... to attain the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we will no longer be children...speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things unto Him who is the head - Christ."

We closed with an introduction to the book, "50+ The Emerging Joshua & Caleb Generation - Empowered for the most fruitful years of your life" By John Boneck, author and pastor, Morning Star Ministries in Charlotte, NC. 50+ers have been called to bless future generations by creating and documenting our unique spiritual legacy, says author and pastor Boneck.

"The younger generation needs us, we are called to be their covering...we are to lead the next generation into kingdom life. They can't make it to God's promised land without us," John boldly and passionately declares.

The generation gap is about to be filled by 50+ers who are ready to declare an end to the era of estrangement and begin restoring generational connections. John offers readers his simple "Spiritual Legacy Mission Statement: We will declare God's faithfulness, power and provision to future generations, that they too may know and live in God's love and purpose."

This is a vision and mission I feel strongly is about to quickly spread throughout the church. As Pastor Kurt outlined, 50+ers need to; 1) reclaim our place and call, 2) Be healed of past wounds, 3) clarify distortions of reality (Vision), 4) Get equipped for a calling (Purpose) and 5) Leave a spiritual legacy (MISSION).

Stay tuned, the next chapter of this 'God story' is about to get very interesting!

P.S. At our twice-weekly company prayer meeting Bronwin shared how this story: The Most Important Question You Can Ask Yourself Today changed her life. I invite you to take 5 minutes to read it! We are continuing to bask in Doug Sherman's "Letters From God" at each meeting. It is such a blessing to see and hear how He is speaking into our busy lives through these simple expressions from the heart of God.


Trading Up Plus: Innovative Possibilities
11.14.13 - by Kurt Notehelfer, ParadiseChurch

"The world may be done with us, but we are not done with the world."

This quote, shared by Marc Freedman at the Encore event last Wednesday, captures some of the tension that many of us may be feeling right now. Some of us because we are part of a growing number of people who, in the world's eyes, have moved beyond our prime.

Others of us, because we are feeling disconnected from the church and are unsure of what, if any, role we have to play in the new chapter of life that is unfolding at Paradise.

The reality, Freedman explained, is that "innovation and experience is not an oxymoron." In fact, if we are willing to believe it, our lifetime of experience can bring uniquely innovative possibilities that can impact the world in powerful ways!

Join us for Trading Up Plus on Wednesdays at 7pm as we explore, together, how our collective gifts and experience can be used by God, in our world and in our church, to bring about uniquely innovative possibilities in this season and beyond!


kurtbzbbaptism Tuesday night pastor David Harris and Kurt held a baptism celebration after the All Church prayer gathering. My youngest (almost 10 year-old) daughter Braida was among the group to take the plunge, declaring to the world, the church and her Heavenly Father that she belongs to Him for a lifetime.

"Baptism is an outward expression of an inward faith." said author Watchman Nee.

"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen," were Jesus last words on earth recorded in Matthew 28:19-20.

"For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ," said the Apostle Paul in Galatians 3:26-27.

It is such a joy to experience the wonder of childlike faith from the perspective of the second half of life. Leoma and I are looking forward to Trading Up Plus meetings and will be sharing more soon.


A "REINSPIRED" EVENING of Encore - IdeaFactoryPress
"Trading Up -> Living Out -> Impacting the World"

11.7.13 by David Bradshaw

dblb My wife Leoma and I, together with nearly 20 others from Paradise Church's Third Quarter group and Swiss America's company Bible study attended ExperienceMattersAZ "Evening of Encore" last night, featuring keynote speakers Harvey Mackay and Encore founder and author Marc Freedman.

This inaugural ExperienceMatters AZ.com event hosted at the Heard Museum was an amazing assembly of community leaders and servants. From the first parking attendent's helpful direction to the last encouraging word spoken by Harvey Mackay and Nora Hannah - this was an evening of reinspirement, or, as Mr. Mackay put it "refirement".

Experience Matters Arizona CEO Nora Hannah began the event with an overview of their mission of connecting experienced talent with the community needs. Of the 77 million baby boomers hitting traditional retirement age, 1 million of them live in metro Phoenix. She views the Encore movement as the fulfillment of the social movements boomers spearheaded in the 60s, 70s & 80s. She reminded the 400 event attendees that when you volunteer or give you always get back more than you can give.

Nora introduced Judy Mohraz representing the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust which presented a $50,000 award recognizing an inspiring Encore Career leader who is addressing a major social need in Maricopa County. Judy said she believes that given the size and magnitude of the boomer movement, Experience Matters AZ will eventually "make eHarmony envious," by connecting and mobilizing individuals toward true fulfillment in life via purpose-driven second acts.

Judy introduced author and Encore founder Marc Freedman, who believes it fitting that this county - the original "Mecca" of American retirement dream of the 60s - should again be at the center of a new vision and dream to fill the vast purpose gap amid baby boomers a half century later.

"If you build it they will come," said Freedman, speaking both of the past vision by Del Webb to pioneer building retirement communities in Sun City, as well as ExperienceMattersAZ's new vision to help aging baby boomers plug into community volunteering jobs. According to Marc, so far 9 million have been touched by the Encore message and another 32 million are now also leaning toward it. Mr. Freedman says the biggest difference between happy and unhappy retirees is having a strong sense of purpose and living it out.

encoreprize Mr. Freedman then introduced the VIRGINIA G. PIPER CHARITABLE TRUST ENCORE CAREER PRIZE winner, Micheal McQuaid, "A $50,000 Award for Applying Experience to Improve Social Good".

A tribute video then spotlighted McQuaid's humble dream - which now spans across generations - to help end homelessness in his community, Maricopa County. A dream of using the very best of his God-given talents and gifts to transform society. As a developer and builder of shopping malls, that talent translated into building the Human Services Campus a modern new homeless mall-complex with offices from 12 community services. Brilliant!

Mr. McQuaid is president of the Human Services Campus, which have been "Giving Hope & Transforming Lives" for three decades. Located at 12th Ave. and Madison in Phoenix, their stated mission is: "Using the power of collaboration to create solutions to end homelessness in our community."

"The Human Services Campus offers resources to over 1,000 people per day. Many of these individuals are connected to our services, our shelters, and our programs. A lot of these folks ARE working. However, they are underemployed, working part-time, or in minimum wage jobs that do not allow them to maintain housing at this time." explains their website.

Mr. McQuaid, and his family and closest associates have invested the last 30 years serving the homeless with food, shelter, clothing as well as hope-building. It was a high point of the event when Michael introduced his sons and grandson that will carry on the family tradition - serving the needs of their community and generation as a threefold cord (which is uneasily broken).

McQuaid's visionary approach to ending homelessness involves reaching out with helping hands and bringing people together to create long-term self-sustainability for the homeless population. This outreach is truly a beacon of light in a darkening world. Leoma and I have been inspired to become volunteers at the Human Services Campus.

Next time I will cover what bestselling author and inspirational speaker Harvey Mackay had to say, which was plenty - starting with something his father taught him as a lifetime rule; "Invest at least 25% of your time volunteering!"


TRADING UP "PLUS" - IdeaFactory Press
"Trading Up -> Living Out -> Impacting the World"

10.31.13 by David Bradshaw

As the 6-week "Trading Up" series by Doug Sherman, author of More Than Ordinary concludes, I know my life and scores of other have been deeply impacted. The simple truth presented is that our Heavenly Father wants us to trade up to a much closer walk with Him in all circumstances. I highly recommend Doug's twice daily email/text personal messages available free at Ingiteyourwalk.com!

"Trading Up" has inspired us to better understand... "Trusting God When Life is Hard" ... "God's Passion to Reveal Himself to Us" ... "Embracing the Truth and Rejecting Lies" ... "The Perfect Father - A God-Centered Reality" ... "God's Attributes: -Without Limits, -Always the Same, -Self-Disruptive" ... and "Belong -> Believe -> Behave" (not visa-versa).

What comes next for the Third Quarter group at Paradise Church in Phoenix, AZ? Pastor Kurt Notehelfer suggests the following strategy:

"The next step of the journey, as we learn together, is to follow hard after Jesus and fully leverage our lives for the kingdom. A revitalized spiritual life naturally leads to new and greater vitality in every area of life.

In TRADING UP "PLUS" we will begin to expand the vision for where we are heading by introducing the three primary elements of living life to the full!

1. TRADE UP your relationship with God.
2. LIVE OUT your calling from God.
3. REALIZE your greatest impact for God.

Encore We will continue to practice the daily rhythms of life with God that we have been learning from Doug Sherman and have opportunities to "tell God stories" in community with one another.

In addition, we will begin to explore how the new perspective we have gained, in our relationship with God, leads us to greater clarity and focus about who God is calling us to be and, ultimately, how we can take action to realize our greatest impact for God - in every season of life!

Of course, we will do all of this in community with one another, as a place to both learn and grow, but also a place to debrief and unpack our experiences of stepping out to serve throughout the week.

WED. NOV 6 - "AN EVENING OF ENCORE" - Come along for a "field trip" to hear Mark Friedman, author of The Big Shift speak and, together, gain a broader perspective on our culture and our mission field!

On the following five Wednesdays in November and December we will gather for times of training, small group interaction, and spiritual empowerment to begin learning what Jesus meant when he said in John 10:10, "I have come that they might have life, and have it TO THE FULL!"

I invite fellow 50+ Phoenicians to join us at the ExperienceMattersAZ "ENCORE" Event on Nov. 6th at 7pm at the Heard Museum to hear Mark Freeman and motivational author Harvey Mackay. Then join Third Quarter the following Wednesday at 7pm for "Trading Up PLUS" at Paradise Church, 4242 East Greenway Road, Phoenix, AZ.


TRADING UP: Rethinking Life With God
Session Six: "Trusting God When Life is Hard"

10.23.13 by David Bradshaw

This final chapter of Trading Up is especially important during the difficult times in which we live today. Creating the new habit of seeking God's kingdom first in all circumstances flies in the face of all that the world is telling us.

Doug Sherman shared a great example from his experience as a fighter aircraft pilot and trainer in the Air Force. "Don't trust your self, trust lead" is square one of becoming a good wing man. "Always follow lead, no matter what the circumstance," was his advice to cadet pilots. Why? For everyone's safety.

wingmanfollowslead

The reason the wing man must keep his eye on the lead pilot at all times to prevent confusion and potential panic sometimes caused by an inner-ear disequalibrium which could lead to flight miscalculate during a steep dive in a battle situation.

"Every difficulty, every injustice, every betrayal, every disease, everything that is hard in our lives is redemptive. Most of the wisdom, goodness and power of God is unseen. We have to trust the unseen goodness of as well as admire Him for the goodness that we see,"says Sherman.

Of course God hates pain, disease and all other difficult circumstances that all humans experience, yet God allows them that we may learn to trust in Him alone, instead of ourselves. "Pain deconstructs our ego," says Doug.

This is why the Sermon on the Mount feels so counter-intuative to the natural mind. Becoming poor in spirit ... meek ... merciful ... persecuted ... none of these traits appear to be the pathway to greatness in this world, yet Jesus said these beautiful attitudes (beatitudes) were the fruit of walking in His kingdom.

On Sunday at Paradise Church pastor David Harris spoke on the subject, using Scripture to illustrate the Apostle Paul's ultimate mission and goal; "to have sufficient courage that Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain." (Phil. 1:20-22)

David sums up our response to challenging circumstances as the "Nevertheless Principle - the ABC's of Trusting God are simple; 1) Life is Difficult, 2) Jesus is Lord, 3) I will Rejoice in all things!" When crisis or trouble strikes, don't look around, look up. What is your downside? Certainly not death!

Both early Christians and we modern Christians need to live boldly. When we become a new creature, we are now members of a "fearless faith," says Harris. And this comes from living live in the hand of God, which is our choice. Paul could have thrown a pity party in prison, but instead he understood that God had a purpose for him right where he was... even in chains!

In the end there are really only two types of Christians; 1) those who trust in a loving and unfailing God, and 2) those who trust in man and his logic and earthly knowledge. Only one path leads to life and inner peace in all circumstances.

Doug concluded the series with a reminder that a 3-fold cord is not easily broken. As we begin to see and seek His 1) Wisdom, 2) Goodness and 3) Power... we will be trading up a self-centered life for a God-centered life and are then fit to become vessels of honor to greatly expand His kingdom throughout the earth.

I am looking forward to the next steps of action for our Third Quarter group that will follow this excellent teaching and reminder of God's passionate desire for us to know Him ... as He knows us. Meanwhile, our twice weekly company prayer meeting is continuing to use Doug's "Letters From God" to help this important message sink deep within our spirits.

Pastor Kurt at Paradise is already working on the next steps for our Third Quarter group to help all achieve "life to the fullest" (John 10:10). Trading Up is step one, which should be followed by step two, "living out our calling from God" and step three "realizing our greatest impact for God".

My recommendation for Christian-based boomer groups as a next step to begin walking out your holy calling is to read 50+ The Emerging Joshua & Caleb Generation by John Boneck of Morning Star Ministries.

50+ If you are ready to gain a fresh perspective on your second half of life mission, and then coached on how to best tell the 'story of your life' with the power of the Spirit of God, then you are going to love this book!

50+ers have been called to bless future generations by creating and documenting our unique spiritual legacy, says author and pastor Boneck. Here is a short preview from the book...

"Our society and cultural Christianity have fostered a lot of spiritual orphans, not connected to spiritual parents, although they want to be. In each person, God the Father has placed a spiritual genetic desire to be connected to spiritual parents...We have learned so much along the way, our hearts for them compel us to share the stories of God's faithfulness," writes John, echoing Doug Sherman's call to freely share "God stories" from our daily Christian walk.


TRADING UP: Rethinking Life With God
Session Five: "God's Passion to Reveal Himself to Us"

10.17.13 by David Bradshaw

God reveals Himself to us using three primary means; 1) through His Word, 2) through our circumstances and 3) through His creation/nature.

John 1:18 reminds us that no man has ever seen God, we can see Him reflected in His son Jesus, in His lovingkindness toward us His children. "We can see Him in every molecule of the universe, if we are looking from the right perspective," says Doug Sherman. molecule

A molecule is defined as: "The smallest possible amount of a particular substance that has all the characteristics of that substance." Which means we, as children God, are infused with the substance known as "faith" complete with all the characteristics of our Creator, our Heavenly Father.

This week our 'Letters From God' focus was on "You can trust in My unseen goodness,' and "You only have to take one step at a time." We discussed how to finish our walk with God well, despite the adverse circumstances we face daily.

Who are we (the clay) to argue with God (the potter) when His unseen wisdom is at work in our life-challenges? (see Isaiah 45:9)

Doug shared the story of a canoe trip with his daughter that ended up all wet and very cold. After they got to shore, they laughed and enjoyed the moment, despite having their perfect plan capsized. So it is that we must make a choice when circumstances "ruin" our plan, our show. God wants us to give Him permission to "run the show" of our lives.

As contemporary Christian artist Toby Mac sings in "Steal My Show"... "If you wanna steal my show, I'll sit back and watch you go, If you got somethin' to say, go on and take it away, Need you to steal my show, can't wait to watch you go!"

Another message that liberated all participants in our small group was that God is proud of us, right where we are at. He seeks for us to bask in His love and acceptance, as we make small steps closer to Him, and then to share our rich 'pilgrim's progress' experience with others.

This sharing of our real-time "God stories" or encounters has an amazing collateral effect: it will bring blessing to all who hear or read it and inspire more encounters because everything in God's kingdom that is healthy must reproduce to continue growing.

Reflection: Begin to think of how God is revealing Himself to you in the Scripture, in your circumstances and in His glorious natural world more each and every day. Tell someone about it or write it down in a journal to be shared at that perfect opportunity later. Record the vision! In all things re-joice!


TRADING UP: Rethinking Life With God
Week Four: "Embracing the Truth and Rejecting Lies"
10.9.13 by David Bradshaw

"Our image of God is a mixture of truth and error. Every truth about God has one or more corresponding lies which hinder our relationship with Him and others," says Doug Sherman in the latest installment of Trading Up.

After walking in the truth of God for years, is it possible that we still can fall prey to lies from the enemy about ourself, the world and God? Sadly, the answer is yes. Our self-centered nature can blind us to the truth without even knowing it. We often box God into our own limited experiences.

peopleinajar For example, consider this "Flees in a Jar" story that one of the Trading Up participants at Paradise Church shared in our small group last week.

Did you know that if you put flees in a jar for three days or more, even when you release them from the jar they will never jump any higher than they could when they were inside the jar? It's true. They hit the lid so often they became programmed - thinking their jumping power had a permanent limit.

Likewise, often we allow our circumstances to limit our view of ourselves, our world and our God because we have also become programmed to artificial limits.

Thankfully our God wants us to continue in His Word, know the truth and be set free, Jesus taught us in John 8:31.

"Every problem in life can be traced back to believing a lie," teaches Sherman. Common lies can include ...
-God is not interested in the small details of my life.
-If I work hard enough, God might be pleased and bless me.
-God sometimes fails to keep His promises.

All of these are lies, but subconsciously, we are prone to believe them, because we may see them operating and struggle with them daily.

Today in one of my text messages from IgniteYourWalk came this message: "Here is some fatherly advice. If you can see it, don't trust it. Instead trust Me. I am perfectly wise, loving and loyal. -Jesus"

We live in a world that is driven by the things seen, but the Scripture says we live in another realm - an unseen spiritual realm - which is driven by faith in the unseen. Hebrews 11:1 reminds us, "Faith is the substance to things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

If we are to live lives pleasing to God we must see beyond the physical realm and walk in the Spirit, which is a lifetime journey of taking small steps out of lies and darkness and into the truth and light.

Doug closed the session with the recognition that we are in a battle for our mind. It is our choice to reject lies and embrace truth. "God loves fresh starts."

Lord God, today we yield our heart, mind and spirit to Your Way, not our own way. We want to know you personally and learn to relate to You as our truthful Father. Help us learn to reject the lies all around us and to stop trusting our eyes to reveal the truth. Instead of saying, "Seeing is believing!" - may we instead begin to think and then say "Believing is seeing!".


TRADING UP: Rethinking Life With God
Week Three: "The Perfect Father"
Key Truism: God-Centered Reality "Before-During-After" Challenges
9.26.13 by David Bradshaw

In week three, Doug Sherman offers a couple great examples of how our Heavenly Father is perfect in every way, perhaps in contrast to our experiences with our earthly father.

FlyFirstClass Doug shared of his experience flying with his sons to Rome, Italy and how God allowed his sons to "trade up" to First Class to sit with him at no extra charge.

How special his sons felt during the 9-hour flight to enjoy the best thier father wanted for them. So to is with our Heavenly Father who is hoping we will "trade up" for his best plan for our lives rather than settling for our self-centered plans.

Doug also shared about his first experience driving a tractor and allowing his infant son to sit on his lap and steer, together with his strong hands along side to guide the wheel safely.

This story illustrates the truth that God's wants to control the vast majority of our time and life, in everyday life experiences, but the choice to invite Him remains up to us. He wants us to grip the wheel lightly, and allow Him to do the real steering.

Lastly, Doug challenged us to "trade up" to a God-centered lifesyle during appointed meetings and conversations by remembering to seek His direction before-during-after such life challenges and opportunities. Again his emphasis is upon taking small steps daily and watch the transformation take flight - over the days, weeks and months ahead. AMEN!


Week Two: "What Is He Like?"
Key Truism: God's Attributes: 1)Without Limits, 2)Always the Same, 3)Disruptive
9.19.13 by David Bradshaw

In a world that changes constantly we need to be reminded that our heavenly Father is unchanging in His love, His kindness, His goodness, His vastness, His majesty.

But knowing this is one thing and acting like it is really true is quite another.

AlaskaFog In the video Doug Sherman shares of his trip to the mountains of Alaska to witness the awesome majesty of God's creation. At first the mountain peaks were shrouded by fog.

Did that mean the majestic handiwork of God were not present?

No, they are just not visible to the human eye from an earthly perspective. We need a higher perspective - which is possible when we are seated with Him in heavenly places throughout the daily course of our lives.

Likewise, God's presence and majesty are ever-present if we wait on Him for eyes to see it. The fog of daily distractions from both the world system and religion can often blind us from seeing the truth.

Doug asks, "What makes angels laugh? ... When humans ask for more of God's presence!"

"God's lovingkindness is without limits, it is always the same and it is infinately disruptive in our lives," says Doug. God's perfect plan for an intimate relationship with us towers over our problems, concerns, fears and foibles.

Sherman shares of his disrupted air travel plans as an example. Do we give thanks that He is in control of our time, schedule and life when our plans are disrupted, or do we grumble? Our actions reflect our true beliefs.

I am really enjoying reading the "Letter From God" handbook included in the teaching series. The truth that God is passionate about seeking His children's best is clearly communicated in these 41 short letters, each signed "Your Heavenly Father".

We have started to use the "Letters From God" in our twice-a-week company prayer/care group, investing the time to review the four Scripture references included with each letter to help the truth to sink into our spirit further.

Paradise Church is hosting the video series on Sundays at 8:30am and Wednesday at 7pm (address below). Sunday services at 10a and 11:30a feature companion messages by pastor David Harris. My wife Leoma and I feel this series is the foundation for the next big step of maturity in our walk with God. Perhaps it could be for you too also?

Next week's topic is "A Perfect Father"!

P.S. I just started reading another very good book: "50+ The Emerging Joshua and Caleb Generation" by John Boneck. I have emailed with John, who leads a 50+ ministry with MorningStarMinistry in Fort Mill, S.C. Their goal is to call the boomer generation (50 and above) back to work, affirming them in who they are as fathers and mothers of the faith, and then pass the blessing onto the next generation. So far it is excellent, highly recommended!


New Boomer Group (3rd Quarter) Launches at Paradise Church
Key truism: Belong -> Believe -> Behave
9.12.13 by David Bradshaw

ABSchart Recent headlines from the American Bible Society declare Americans have a major "disconnect between belief and behavior". The result is most people are living their life unfulfilled and guilt-ridden.

The poll found that most Christians "view reading the Bible as taking your medicine", which is to say less than exciting. The result: Only 13% of Christians read their Bible daily.

TRADING UP with Doug Sherman launched last Sunday at Paradise Church with the premise that we each need an enlarged view of our heavenly Father if we are to find true meaning in life.

Session One: "Rethinking God" was a breath of fresh air! My wife Leoma and I attended with great expectations, having read Doug Sherman's new book More Than Ordinary. Here is what Leoma wrote...

The words and teachings that I became aware of from this past weekend session was to humble myself and rediscover God. As Richard Rohr reminded us; On our life journey, we as Christians, need to dissolve our boundaries, feel the suffering of life, learn from it and then lead others.

In addition, as Doug Sherman mentioned; We all fear the letting go of our "egocentric" lifestyles. We must learn to trust Him moment by moment. "Ignite Your Walk" daily email and text messages have helped me grow closer to God and fellowship with Him throughout the day!

I applaud the boldness of Paradise Church pastor, David Harris, for facilitating face-to-face interaction within the service - allowing attendees to fellowship with more than the back of someone's head.

If you like being given the freedom to encounter 'body life' with fellow Christians, this is the place for you! Imagine, a dedicated time to share what God is doing in your work, your life and walk with God.

From ... Behave-Believe-Belong To ... Belong-Believe-Behave

In our culture today, and sadly in much religion, feeling accepted, or that we belong is based upon thinking we must do better, or simply put, we must BEHAVE to BELONG. Morality and strict rules are the key to pleasing God, most think.

But the Bible teaches otherwise; we must first understand that we BELONG, that we are loved, as-is. From this perspective we then grow in our faith and BELIEF. Then our BEHAVIOR gradually changes from "What pleases me?" to "What pleases God?"

After a lifetime of having the world system (and religion) brainwash us to believe just the opposite, the chances are very high that many of us need some deprogramming to walk in this new spirit-led self.

Just before Christ's temptation by Satan we hear the Father saying... "And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased," (Matt. 3:17). We each need to have that same foundational identity of really knowing that we are loved and are pleasing to God.

This is the goal of TRADING UP, as I see it. I invite all Phoenicians to begin Trading Up, Session Two: "What He is Like" this Sunday, Sept. 15th at 8:30AM at Paradise Church, 4242 East Greenway Road, Phoenix, AZ.

Finding our place of service in God's Kingdom is His ultimate plan for our life. It all begins with a change of heart, knowing He is passionate about knowing you. God wants a closer relationship with you. Wouldn't you like to "trade up" from a self-centered life to a God-centered life today? Start here.

Latest Boomer News Briefs


2013: Greetings from the Valley of the Sun!
Here's a ministry fund-raising idea!

INTRODUCTION: For a quarter century I have researched and reported on economic trends from a Christian perspective for Swiss America. In that time I have watched debt enslave and devour American culture. Americans are now urgently seeking answers about the shaky economy, soaring debt and how to survive a rapidly rising cost of living.

GOOD NEWS: I have a fund-raising idea to share with you today which could help expand your budget and outreach by $100,000 per year* or more. I have helped a small national ministry use this fund-raising concept successfully over the past two years. Here is the idea in a nutshell:

1) WHO: Swiss America, founded by Craig R. Smith in 1982, is the most respected national brokerage firm for precious metals in the U.S. and a trusted source of the most comprehensive free educational resources on such investments. Swiss has no unresolved complaints and maintains an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Swiss was the first company invited to advertise on CBN.com and The 700 Club. Craig Smith has been a member of Phoenix First Assembly of God (Pastor Tommy Barnett) for over 25 years and written about by Pastor Barnett in his books. Pat Boone is Swiss America's spokesperson and is widely respected for his integrity, ministry and lifetime achievements.

2) WHAT: To help fund your ministry Swiss America's in-house advertising agency (FAME, Inc) would like to extend an offer to make a donation to your ministry for each referral who either calls us at a special toll-free number or online registrations to receive a free educational kit. Educational kits may include a free book, free dvd, free cd, free White Paper, etc. There is no obligation to purchase anything. Those contacting us simply agree to receive free, postpaid information on the Bible's teachings about economics via our free resources.

3) HOW: Monthly we will provide your ministry with a $25 donation for each new, unique inquiry to Swiss America (name, address, email & phone) requesting our free, empowering educational resources. Our approach is to work with fellow Christians such as yourself to share a monthly or quarterly email blast offer, internet banners and links, and/or radio/TV show mentions and/or live interviews with information that can help the faithful in these times of trouble and testing.

4) SAMPLE FREE OFFER: "Truth About Money" cd and "Re-Making Money" report which explains why and how individuals, families, ministries and nations should and could restore the sound money values of the Bible that America's Founders included in our Constitution.

I would love to work with you to help build His Kingdom and strengthen your ministry with a solid gold foundation, for the sake of our future and our children.

Faithfully yours,

DAVID M. BRADSHAW
Editor, Real Money Perspectives
Publisher, Idea Factory Press
602.918.3296

*Based on generating 8,000 responses to free educational offers at $25/response since 9/2009.

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