Steve Jobs is dead.

It is with a heavy heart that I first pressed my fingers to the keys tonight, knowing that one of the most lauded and respected men in the world. . . is dead.

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He started as a humble adopted son, and started his life in San Francisco. It is unknown why his biological parents gave him up; perhaps due to college stresses, but the move for Steven Paul Jobs, as he was named, proved quite remarkable.

He attended Cupertino High School, and while there, frequented after-school lectures at his favorite Silicon Valley company, the soon-to-be huge, Hewlett Packard Company of Palo Alto. It was perhaps at Hewlett that Steve developed his first real love for computing. He was hired there, along with his life-long cohort Steve Wozniak, for a summer job. He recently recalled a memory of this time, at the unveiling of the new Apple headquarters to the Town Hall of Cupertino; “I just loved biking through those peach orchards on the way to work; I want to bring it back to that.”

Funny to think that one of the world’s richest men began life riding through peach orchards, to work at a future competitor.

In autumn 1974, Steve began attending meetings of the Homebrew Computer Club with Wozniak. He also took a job at the popular Atari, which some many know by the cult hit Pong.

ButIt was in 1976, that Steven P. Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and others, would found The Big One. Apple Computer. Steve somehow managed to push Woz, who is a skilled electronics hacker, to build a computer for them to sell. The Apple 1, as it was called, barely contained enough kick to even start to resemble a modern-day computer, but it was, the first personal computer to become popular.  

In 1983 Steve recruited John Sculley from Pepsi-Cola, to become Apple’s CEO. He famously asked him, in classic Steve snark; “Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me and change the world?”

Words like that later proved eerily accurate.

The following year was a big year for Apple. At an annual shareholder meeting, a reportedly emotional Jobs introduced what would be the very first Macintosh to a well-receiving audience.  Andy Hertzfield later described the scene as “pandemonium.” Somewhat surprisingly, The Macintosh became the first commercially, widely successful personal computer, which also introduced the same sort of graphical interface that we now have become accostomed to.

Yes, Jobs was a very charismatic director for Apple, but in those days, he was seen as something of a tyrant, which led to Sculley, in May 1985, relieving Steve of his position.

Steve later described this time as being the best thing that could have happened to him;“The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.”

Jobs went on to found NeXT Computer, which, after some failing commercial hardware products, went on to produce software.

In 1986 Jobs made one of the most lucrative acquisitions of his career, buying Pixar from George Lucas. It went at $10 million at the time, $5 million of which was simply given to the company as capital. Jobs was named a producer on Toy Story, and along with John Lasseter, went on to create some of the most memorable animated pictures, arguably, in history.

in January of 2006, Jobs and Bob Iger announced that Disney had agreed to purchase Pixar in a transaction of $7.4 billion. After the deal closed, Jobs became Disney’s single largest shareholder with 7% of the company’s stock. Jobs simply joined the six-man steering committee after the merger.

While Jobs was off meandering with Pixar and NeXT, Apple had fallen on hard times. In fact, they were about ninety days from chapter eleven. But that was soon to change.

In 1996, Apple announced that it would buy NeXT for $429 million. After the deal finalized, Jobs came back to Apple, becoming the new de facto CEO. And he was about to really use that power. He quickly went on a terminating spree, cutting all the loose fat. His actual firings were rare, but he managed to get rid of a few key employees that he felt were weighing down the company. Most notably, however, he terminated a number of ongoing projects at Apple, namely the iPad precursor, the Apple Newton.

Over the next decade, Jobs flew; introducing the iMac, and then the first iPod. iTunes released to become iPod’s sibling, and the Apple Store became the hub for which these products would see consumer’s thirsty eyes. Mac OS X was released, and has since become, arguably, the worlds most intuitive, powerful operating system. The iPhone, and iOS became Apple’s swan song in the last few years, and that summary leaves out a huge amount of other amazing products.

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He upended the technological world. Albeit not single-handedly, but he did, he changed the game. He surrounded himself with the best, and set out on a quest to develop the best products he could. We have lived through an incredible part of history being made. Steve Jobs popularized the personal computer, he popularized well-made, beautiful products. Before he came along, everyone believed that to own a computer, you must have a tower, a monitor, and maybe a sneaky desk to hide the nasty tower, made of low-grade, ugly plastic nonetheless.

And then came along the iMac. Jonathan Ive, a lead designer at Apple, and friend of Steve’s was a head on the project. And. . . It looked like nothing else. It eschewed the traditional trappings of a personal computer. A all-in-one, a mouse, a keyboard. And a love was kindled in millions of people. Because you see, they didn’t just fall in love with the looks, or the ease of use, or the applications, or the rock-solid UNIX foundation, or pretty much anything about it. They fell in love with something it offered, that all Apple products, to this day offer; an experience, made not from grunt labor, but from love.

Steve said of the iMac; “We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.”

And people will look back a hundred years from now, and wonder why Steve rocketed to the top like he did. It was a lot of things; but the number one, in my opinion, was love. He loved what he did, with an unwilling, unrelenting fervor. He didn’t cut corners to save money, he gave the public what he would want in a product, what he would want in a personal experience. He was notorious for being incredibly picky, once calling a App designer at Google to change the hue of yellow in his app icon. He was a perfectionist, a follower of clean and simple design. He loved standing on that stage, delivering the next new product, you could just tell; he was quite often criticized for his over-zealous use of adjectives like beautiful, wonderful, and amazing. He took the emphasis off himself, wearing the same understated black turtleneck and blue wranglers for years now. For him, it was about the product, nothing else. He wasn’t ever putting on a show; the iPod, the iPhone, the iMac; they didn’t require it. People sat, and watched, enraptured, in awe, of the innovations, the labor of love pouring out from Apple.

He quite honestly inspired me, a man from such humble beginnings, to becoming, if not the most, one of the most incredible public figures of this century. He repeatedly changed the way we think about consumer electronics, about the way computers and phones work. He understood our needs and our wants, before we even knew we had them. In doing so, he ushered in another revolution, in tandem with the ongoing tech revolution; The Apple Revolution. More people now own an iPod than I care to shake a stick at, the iPhone is sitting on top of the smartphone market, that, ironically, it created. The iPad is still the only tablet to hold a respectable market share. I’m sure you can guess the reason why at this point, but I’ll tell you anyways. Steven P. Jobs.

Perhaps towards the end, death was something of a driving force for Steve, as powerfully evidenced in a June 2005 Stanford Commencement Speech:

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

Steve was a thinker, a doer, an innovator, a leader. He was a visionary, with ideas that changed the world. He will be missed sorely by his many fans, who will miss his zeal, his charisma, his love for his company, and his humble nature. He has inspired millions besides me to do their best in life; to shoot for the stars. And he didn’t make it as far as we wished, or he wished, but he had a damn good run.

Thanks Steve; for everything. I’ll miss you.

“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s what matters to me.”

[The Wall Street Journal, May 25, 1993]

Don’t support Breast Cancer Research

Today I saw hundreds of women walking down the hot sidewalks of Plymouth, wearing pink hats, shirts that screamed; “I Love My Ta Ta’s,” and other irreverent lingo to do with the female breast, even men, wearing bras, walking proudly towards some common goal; “The Cure.”

Well, as moving as it might be to witness hundreds of people coming together to do something seemingly productive, it makes me sick. Because I know what a farce Breast Cancer research is.

Take this little tibit for example; last year, just as Breast Cancer Awareness Month was wrapping up, the premiere breast cancer research foundation, “Susan G. Komen,” came under harsh scrutiny because of it’s donations to Planned Parenthood. (Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that Planned Parenthood is the leading abortion giver in the United States.) Unfortunately for S.G.K., this donation was probably the worst thing they could possibly do to assure the women of the world that they were on the beleaguered march for “The Cure,” as continued research has shown that abortions can, and do increase the chance of breast cancer. The Susan G. Komen was later found to have given Planned Parenthood over 3 million dollars over the past five years. (Source) Bad move, Susan.

Funny, that the leading proponent against Breast Cancer, is also one of the biggest supporters of it. Pray tell; how does this conflict resolve itself?

Finally, it is quite interesting that here we are, still marching for “The Cure,” when breast cancer is completely treatable when found at early stages. Cancer already has a cure, and it requires about the same amount of money you probably already spend on your grocery bill. In fact it is your groceries, as long as your purchase the right ones. Being healthy is usually a reward in itself, but in the case of cancer, it gets a bit more rewarding.

Don’t support Susan G. Komen “For the Cure.”

Well, do, if you are a blithering idiot.

iOS 5.0. It’s coming, and here’s what it will include.

Apple [AAPL] always has come tricks up its sleeve. I’m willing to bet this year, that iOS 5.0 is one of them. Yes, 4.3 is coming down the proverbial pipe, but 5.0 must be not far behind, being that so many issues regarding the current build are so easily fixable. It makes sense to include all of those updates in a clean new release; ergo the new, shiny, 5.0.

Here are my predictions for what the new iOS will look like.

Better Notifications

Let’s face it, iOS’s current system for notifications is, in a word, terrible. What comes to mind when I think about the new notification system is that green or red bar that plays across the screen when you go to the home screen while on a call. This is unobtrusive, and also quite stylish. Another good thing would be to add an icon to the top bar, like Apple did for location-based services. The icon could blink subtly on a predetermined basis, a la the pulsing light on the front of the iMac. Here is a mock-up.

Cleaner Multitasking

The multitasking system implemented in the current version of iOS feels half-baked. I think it will change drastically on all fronts. First, allowing the user to see more multitasking apps onscreen at a time, something akin to wonderful-ness that is Exposé on OSX. Besides that, I would love to see a “Kill Everything” button within the multitasking screen so we iOS users don’t have to perform a series of harried and laborious presses to free up memory. (Honestly, we must look like lunatics.)

Aesthetic Changes

iOS is looking a little old. Even with the face-lifts of recent years, it could use a touch up. One of my biggest pet peeves of iOS right now is the download bar, within downloading apps. I don’t know why, but it seems tacked-on to me. For someone who is constantly downloading new apps, I would appreciate something a bit nicer to look at. Another is the “Slide to Unlock” screen. With all those crazy Android users doing their finger-twister on their phones, I still love Apple’s nice approach to accidental unlocking, but it could definitely use some tweaking. Any improvements here, especially to general UI, would be a welcome addition.

Integration with MobileMe

With the continuing strength of free MobileMe rumors, especially given the fact that Apple just built that huge data center in North Carolina, there will most certainly be some added usability for MobileMe in iOS 5.0. This will probably include ‘in the cloud’ storage options for photos, video, files, and mobile iTunes. Rest assured, anything that requires a 1 Billion dollar data center to work, will probably be good.

Near Field Technology Implementation

There have been some rumors about the inclusion of a new “wireless wallet” which might see itself into iOS by the adaptation of Near Field Communications, in both the iPad 2 and the iPhone 5. This wireless wallet would be something to not physically replace your current one, but augment it, and lessen the necessity of constantly digging deep into pockets for a credit card. N.F.C. will also allow you to read certain things with embedded electronics; (think, holding your phone up to a advertisement for Abercrombie & Fitch, which would then open a link on your phone with directions to the nearest store, and also give you the names and prices of clothing used in the Ad.)

Improved Folders

The folders system right now is a bit lacking. Apple, please let us organize the hundreds of photos and videos on our iPhones into separate albums. Add to that a file system for organizing apps intelligently, without an ugly chrome-rimmed app icon, and without a asymmetric folder view.

Better Autocorrect + Customizable Dictionary

The iPhone has the worst auto-correct system ever devised by man. It doesn’t learn from habits, which means I have to reject the same changes repeatedly, forever, and ever. I also can not add new words to the on-board dictonary. And if I have any Address Book contacts prefaced with the word ‘Mr.’ then I will constantly find myself backspacing when I start typing ‘me’ anywhere. Please Apple, allow us to have something better, perhaps actually usable? And the ability to turn off autocorrect until it is needed, something like a spell-check button, would be positively heavenly.

At-Your-Fingertips-Settings

The current iOS has a UI that, at times, seems to more likely fight the user, rather than help them. This includes the crazy settings app, the notification system, and other general defects.

I would like to see Apple bring in a new settings option, that does not constrain itself to an app. This has somewhat shown itself with the multitasking settings, but there needs to be more of those implemented, and without the trouble of navigating through ten menus. It would be nice to see a settings option that provides a quicker way to shut off bluetooth, wifi, brightness and enable/disable airplane mode. If I want to save some precious battery life and disable Bluetooth when I’m not using it, it takes five taps. The settings menu should somehow integrate itself in the multitasking screen, so that everything is easily accessible while in-app. Another thing that should be included here; user-definable ‘favorites’ folder of settings, or an area within the multitasking screen. I’m sure this would be a popular option, because many people have different settings that they most often use, and this would undoubtably cut down on some of the stress induced while navigating endless menus to find a popular option.

New Gestures

It’s no secret that Apple has implemented some new gestures to effectively produce the same results as the home button did. Goodness knows we all long for the inevitable demise of the home button; the archaic plastic button at the bottom of my device has, many a time become something of a bother. The new gestures are just now showing themselves in iOS 4.3, so let’s hope they fully realize their potential by the time 5.0 releases. I think this could be a major step for mobile computing as a whole, not to mention how cool it will be to have devices that effectively have “no” buttons. This should also help to further my previous idea of a Exposé-esque multitasking, and streamline that whole process like it already is on the Mac. Finally, this will also help to reduce the large bezel, making widescreen viewing much more pleasurable, and negate any “accidental closings” of apps. (Guilty)

Here is an artist’s rendition of a mock iPhone that maintains the same proportions, and yet does away with much of the bezel.

Procedural App Icons

Dynamic apps have been sadly absent from iOS for too long. Besides the calender app, there are no dynamic apps in iOS. Think of the possibilities; the weather app showing the current temp and conditions, the clock app turning like it should. Push notifications for apps, instead of showing that ugly red ticker on the upper right hand corner, the actual app icon subtly animating and glowing.

The current SMS system could use an overhaul as well, and maybe it will see itself in this whole new procedural app icon system, and notification system.

Increased Wireless Capability

The ability to wirelessly sync an iOS device with the Mac has been a long and lusted ability. This should be a given, but with Apple putting Thunderbolt into the new Macbook Pros, might not need to happen after all. With Thunderbolt, imagine syncing ten movies, a dozen apps, and an entire music library in mere minutes.

Another wanted capability is ‘in the cloud’ iTunes. Apple’s recent acquisition of the music service LaLa, points to this being a very real possibility. Apple will most likely continue offering songs at 99c a pop, but add this service for a monthly fee.

Add one more awesome feature to the ‘needed’ in wireless; multiple ring profiles based on GPS location, (work, home, school, movies), would be quite awesome.

New Lock Screen

A new lock screen based on the dynamic app icons, should be a given in this new release. It’s taken Apple long enough, there is no reason it shouldn’t be a part of 5.0. I would rather see the weather moving by on my screen, with overlays of news, notifications, and clock information, than a stupid wallpaper with a unmoving clock at the top. Let’s hope Apple hears our cries for this feature, and all of these features, and implements them well in the new iOS 5.0. (it is inevitable)

What are your thoughts? Do you think my predictions are right? Anything I missed? Let me know in the comments.

on my heart i wear a sleeve that you knitted for me

Photo/Martin Gommel

One prevalent thought on my mind now is anger. Not personally feeling it, but experiencing from outside sources.
So I wondered while pondering this; what is anger, and is it a sin?
Well, the answer is similarly. . . complicated.
Take for example, the Christian worker amidst un-christian co-workers. She tells everyone about her faith, and when they make fun of her for it, they expect her not to get angry because she is “Christian”. So she bottles the anger up inside, leaving the feelings to meld and mingle, turning into bitterness and resentment. Now, has she sinned, even thought she did not get angry? Yes.

The belief that we sin by feeling angry is usually derived from Jesus’ familiar statement in the Sermon on the Mount:

“You have heard that it was said to the men of old, ‘You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be liable to the hell of fire.” (Mt 5:21-22 RSV)

But, some people also counter that statement that Jesus is condemning anger above with the fact that HE was angry himself in Mark 11:15; “And they came to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out those that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the money changers, and the seats of them that sold doves. .”

However, I do not personally believe that Jesus had the ability to be angry as we get angry. God is neither hateful or terrible, he does not ‘anger’ like we do. Humans inherently have a tinge of hate to their anger. If you don’t believe me, look back on some of the instances that you were angry about something. There almost always is an element of hate to that anger.

God hates sin, but He loves us. Therefore within His anger, there is no fault or corruption, no “whats in it for me”, no hate or antagonistic feelings.
If you look up anger in the index of a Bible, you will find many other verses that speak of God’s anger. It is a theme that runs through the Old Testament.

Often that anger is directed against God’s people because of their sin. Sin can provoke God to anger. Jesus was angry with the Pharisees for their hypocrisy and lack of compassion toward the man with the withered hand, Mark 3:5. Jesus was rightly angry at the corruption and cheating that was going on in the temple and the lack of reverence for God and His house, Mark 11:15 again.

But remember this; that anger cannot be hateful; or anywhere near the way we feel hateful anger.

So, I guess we could say it depends on what type of anger it is. If it a righteous, Godly anger, then it cannot be a sin! Does that mean we should prance around being angry about everything that deserves anger? Heck no!

We most definitely can be angry at the injustice in the world, at mankind’s inhumanity to man, angry at those who take God’s Word and twist it till it means something less than God intended, angry, or sad at those who dishonor God’s name by their behavior, angry at the sin we see in lives, including that which we see in our own lives. Angry enough to want to do something to rectify these situations.But the Bible cautions us to ‘Be angry, and yet do not sin,’ (Ephesians 4:26)

Therefore we know it is possible to fall to anger and yet not sin. James 1:20 tells us, “the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.”

Think about the anger in your life. Is it righteous, Godly anger, or is it the more common, human nature driven, self-centered anger?

So is anger a sin for us humans? It absolutely is. But not always, or constantly. We can demonstrate righteous anger, albeit difficultly. So watch your anger, it’s limits and reaches. It can control you, and consume you. And if it is not of God, then it is not condoned by God.

As always, just a thought. Please let me know your thoughts by pressing the ‘comment’ button above.

March 2nd; iPad 2

Finally, the rumors have become true.

Forbes.com reported this morning that Apple has set an event for March 2, undoubtably to unveil the second generation iPad. The event is planned to be held at Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco. Now that the next iPad is within our grasp, the rumors and speculation as to what improvements Apple will make, on the already extremely capable machine are running at a fever pitch. Here is my rundown on what we should be able to expect from Apple’s next tablet. The revolution is at hand people!

Cameras. (Lots of them)

One of the most lacking features of the original iPad was the fact it didn’t support Apple’s coolest new part of the iPhone 4; Facetime. I expect that Apple will include one to three cameras on the iPad 2, including a rear one. The possibilities with a rear-facing camera on the iPad 2 are seemingly endless. The most obvious one is to switch to rear view on Facetime so that someone can see what you see, but the thought of augmented reality apps, taking pictures and drawing on them, scanning things using apps like Google Googles, is just too cool. Just think; whipping out your iPad at your friends place, taking a picture of their favorite book, and seconds later downloading the same one using iBooks.

Better Retina-ish Display

Lets face it, the original iPad’s display is pretty good. But we always want better, and Apple is willing to offer that. The possibilities for a true retina display are slim, because of the drain a massive retina display would have on the battery, but there will most likely be a slight upgrade. Another thing the display could use is the ability to dim itself more. When I read an iBook in the dark on mine, it is way too bright, and I liken it to staring into a 100 watt bulb. So a little dimmer would be appreciated.

Bezel Changes

The bezel on the current iPad is just a little too big for my liking, but if the rumors regarding the removal of the home button are true, then the implementation of home-button-esque gestures using the bezel are quite probable, if not definite. A recent patent made by Apple includes the ability to use swipes and gestures as opposed to standard home button clicks.

Better Speaker

Even though the speaker on the original iPad was good, it certainly left something to be desired. The current rumor is that the iPad 2 has a large speaker grille on the back as well as on the bottom. I am of two minds about this, because I usually use my iPad back down, on a table or flat surface, so I don’t know how much the rear speaker will help, but Apple has pulled off similar speaker-feats previously, namely with the fourth-generation iPod Nano.

Body Work

There is some speculation as to what materials will use for the back of the iPad 2. I just hope Apple goes with the same matte aluminum alloy as it has previously, and possibly make it even more grippy so I can get a better hold on it. The weight will almost definitely be decreased, but the possibility is there that the battery life might go with it. I’m not personally an advocate for a lighter iPad, I like the weight and feel of mine, but if Apple does decide to cut down on the weight, lets hope it doesn’t also sacrifice some of the capability.

Those are my predictions for the next iPad. What do you think? Will it have the ability to fly? To never be recharged? Let me know! Start a discussion!

Signal Fire

Photo Cred/Francisco Diez

For thousands of years, the signal fires along the Great Wall of China kept the people aware of impending attack by the brutal Mongols. There was surely an element of fear associated with them, being that they meant something terrible was about to happen; but I am also inclined to believe that they gave people hope. Looking at the massive Wall during the day, and seeing those towers filled with burning material, it must have been a great feeling. One of safety, assurance, and wholeness.

I wonder, shouldn’t we look at God in the same way? He is our great Protector, Defender, the Almighty, the Alpha and Omega, the first, and the last. Yes, that deserves some incredible respect, but knowing this however, we can also be assured of our path, our eternal life. We can be safe and secure in the awesome arms of our Creator! If there was anything in life that you thought was cool, or awesome, this trumps it all. God not only saved you and me, be He is also here, with all of us, all the time. We should look to God in awe and wonderment, but beyond that, you should also know the fact that He is with you, He cares about you, He loves you, He wants you to be safe, maybe not here on earth, but at least in knowing that the end is coming; and if you have accepted Christ, and you live for Him, you have a one-way ticket to where no one is troubled. That is something to just feel awesome about.

Is God your signal fire?

The eye of God

Words are just words.
They don’t mean much. What if I tried to explain to you the emotions I feel when I watch that episode of “The Office” when Jim and Pam get married? Well, I would start by saying that. . . I love the quaintness of their relationship. Like that point where Pam is crying because her veil is torn, and asks Jim to come and see her. When Jim walks into the room; he’s just taken aback by the beauty of his bride-to-be. She is crying because she doesn’t think she is beautiful, and she didn’t get the right dress, and she couldn’t wear high heels, and her veil is torn, so she feels even more distressed – but Jim sees past all of this, into the woman he loves, he looks at her and “Pam, you are so. . . beautiful. You look just the way I imagined you.”And he cuts off half of his tie to even out her veil. She can’t help smiling, being happy. That is. . . love.
Words are just words though.

What if I tried to explain to you; that which is unexplainable?  Life. That which is so incredibly complex and indescribable, chains of emotions regarding courses of events, a day-to-day battle sometimes, sometimes a daily pleasure. Life.Well, I would start by saying that life is us. We who intermingle, form relationships, share looks and thoughts, we are life, and life is everyone. Relationships are the basis of life. God is at the root of this in my life, in so many ways. He guides us along paths that… may not always be conceivable, or understandable, but he is our Shepard. We are His sheep, meek, unknowing and unable. But He is Grace. He is Steady. He is.. Everything. Beyond our relationship with God and with others, is our relationship with ourselves, our soul. We don’t always know ourselves completely; in fact, I’m a firm believer in the theory of not being fully able to even comprehend oneself. God knows us much better than we know ourselves. Others sometimes, they also know you better than you know yourself. Our relationship with ourselves is who we are. We are extremely moved by our interior self, our subconscious. This is where our drive comes from, our being.

So that all has pushed me to my point; life is what we make of it, individually, apart and together. But there are many universal concepts, such as the ability to love. This is an inherited trait we receive from God; I don’t believe we are born with it, it is a gift. And it can be very differently defined around the globe. But in the end, love is, at its core, something very intrinsic and amazing, ergo; universal. I digress. Even though these concepts and thought processes, perceptions as it were, are fundamentally truthful, there is a very large and defining part of them that is abstract, undefinable, and yet definable. This harkens back to my original topic, the scene from “The Office”. There are portions of love that are yet untraveled for some of us. Myself, I find my theory, my basis of love, ever-growing and changing, developing and embracing, and adapting to situations.
Love, I think, is one part of the human body that always continues to grow, for the entirety of our lives.
I honestly don’t believe that I will ever see the day that my love stops growing. Yes it does need nourishment, or will become stagnant just like many other things. But it does grow. When my grandmother died, my love grew, it changed to fit the situation and time. When I fully accepted Christ in my life, love hit me like a freight truck, immense and endless. When I began to love romantically, love changed in me, developing more avenues, or branches. Even now, love challenges me, forces me in the right direction, helps me do that which is impossible without God. God is love by the way, and love is the absolute core of Christianity, of our faith.
But back to life again. Life is something that you experience in doses. Things come quick, or they go slow. There really isn’t much middle ground. Our brains sometimes can’t fully comprehend what is happening, or we know exactly what’s going on, and are just waiting for that next step to be taken. Life is a mixture of joy and elation, of sadness and heartbreak. That feeling you get when you see the wake of someone who you love. That happy tear falling from the eye of the girl that you just proposed to. The elation you feeling when there is a 4.0 listed on your college grade center. That all-encompassing helplessness when a member of your family is diagnosed with a terminal illness. Life is what we make of it. We can take the best parts, put them together, and be incredibly thankful. We can also cull together all the worst parts, dwell on them, become bitter and hated. We can just detach, when a spouse dies; if there really isn’t anything to live for anymore. Like I said life is what we make of it, or better yet, what we perceive it to be.
I know I deal in absolutes a lot on here. And I know there are a lot gray areas in life, in what I talk about.
But whatever is troubling you tonight; make the best of it. Whatever trial you are facing; face forward. Whatever you are going through; look up.We are called upon by God to rejoice in what He has so graciously given us! Whatever you are dealing with, there is a good side! I know it! God works all things for the good of His people. That means if you love God, if you follow Him, if you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and are interested, or doing relationship with Him: there is Hope! And even to those who do not know God, who do not believe in what I’m saying, who wish to discredit me; there is hope for you too. I believe that God can do a work in you, just as he did in me.
Love is power. A power given to us by God to do good work. There is no end to the things you can do with love, if you only open your heart. God is so awesome to give us this, Himself really. God is love, and love is in us. How cool is that? To know that GOD is inside of YOU! Stop for a minute; really think about that.

As this very moment God is moving you. God is the driving force, the kind and helpful holding hand. So, I hope this inspires you to love; to love harder, more, endlessly, effortlessly, difficultly, powerfully, lovingly, Godly. Or, at the very least, to take life for all that it’s worth. Life is awesome, life is a gift. But only if you choose to receive it.