Triathlon Tips – 5 Reasons Improve Triathlon Swimming Will Increase Your Rank Greatly

There are many triathlon tips that say you must be good at every event to win. I totally agree with that because you must not have a major weakness and if you specialize in a particular event it will be even better. I would recommend specialize in triathlon  swimming  because it will give the most benefit compare to the rest.

Triathlon  swimming  is the hardest and the most important area of Triathlon sport because it is the only event that focuses most on technique rather than strength alone. That is why top Triathlon athletic spends a lot of time improving their triathlon  swimming  technique to edge past competition.

Below are the 5 reasons why improve triathlon  swimming  will give you better results:

1. Make you  swim  faster

Well this is the most obvious and important reason you should improve your triathlon  swimming . The last thing you want is to lose out to people in this area and have to play catch up for the rest of the race. Is not good for your race and it is surely not good for your morale if you fall behind too much.

2. Use less stamina yet having good speed

 Swimming  is a bit different compare to running and cycling. You can easily increase speed by moving your legs faster for running and cycling but you won’t get the same result with  swimming . Swinging your arms and kicking your legs as fast as you can might give you a little speed boost but you will get tired quickly. To improve triathlon  swimming  it really depends on your  swimming  technique on how you stroke your arms and kick your legs to gain good speed while not wasting your stamina unnecessary.

3. Avoid muscle pain

During triathlon  swimming  most people just swing their arms and kick like crazy to be the fastest swimmer around. As a result it is natural the muscle is overwork and will cause muscle pain. That is something you really want to avoid because you still got a long race to go if  swimming  is not your last event.

4. Avoid getting frustrated

One of the many triathlon tips is to always keep yourself motivated throughout the whole race but if you fall behind too much in 1 event, sometimes it is hard to maintain that motivation. I can tell you that  swimming  is the number 1 motivation killer of all events. This is because a lot of people don’t get it why the put so much effort but produce so little result and start falling behind the crowd. All this can be avoided by practicing the correct  swimming  technique.

5. Take advantage of the triathlon  swimming  event

While you must be good at all areas to win a triathlon race but triathlon  swimming  is the event that can give you the most benefit if you are good at it. During the event itself you can edge pass competition and yet save up more stamina for the other events. Moreover there are a lot of people that use incorrect  swimming  technique that requires more stamina and less speed.

A Review of Genting Highlands Tour Package With Star Cruise

On-Board the Super Star Virgo luxury liner

We started our getaway with a cruise on the Superstar Virgo from Singapore to Port Klang. We spent 2 days 1 night on board. We departed Singapore at 10:30pm and reached Port Klang the following afternoon at 3pm.

Our cabin was on the 11th floor without a pothole. We were surprised by the welcome gifts awaiting us on the dressing table. The room was cozy and have comfortable beds that will definitely allow you to have a beautiful night’s rest. The cabin isle is long which shows that its a long ship

The meals onboard were sumptuous. There was a choice of Western, Chinese and Mediterranean, each having a separate restaurant. We tried both the Chinese (for breakfast) tim sum style and Mediterranean (for dinner) buffet style. The breakfast was average but good enough to feel you. The dinner was better, evidenced with us going for a 2nd round to eat our fill. There are other restaurants onboard but you have to pay for them and is not included in the tour package

We toured the ship and used its facilities. Our first stop was the spa pool, hot bath and sauna. This was the first time I visited the hot bath and sauna. It was really hot and I had to open the door to let off some steam… Good thing no one was in it. hahaa. There was a theater for live performance. When there was no performance they would screen a movie. There are 13 floors in all in the ship, when you take the lift, it gives you a breath taking view of the beautiful interior. There are 2   swimming  pools, one at the front and another at the rear of the ship. Last but not least we visited the casino. There were many tables for card games, roulette and others. There were many rows of slot machines too. One of the biggest casino on board a ship I have seen thus far.

Heading to Genting Highlands

We arrived Port Klang as scheduled and got off the ship to take the bus ride to Genting HighLands. The bus journey lasted 3 hours. It was like the expressway as there were no traffic lights to stop us. Along the way we got to see the majestic twin Petronas Towers at Kuala Lumpur. After a brief toilet break we started to ascend the hills of Genting HighLands. The road is not as winding as before as there are now 3 lanes going up and down. After an hour we reached the peak and proceeded to First World Hotel . It was already foggy and visibility was poor.

First World Plaza Indoor Theme Park

After dinner, we proceed to the First World Plaza Indoor Theme Park . We were amazed how a theme park could be within a building. As time was limited, we managed to ride only on the:

  1. 4D Motion Master (Fast)
  2. Euro Express (Fast)
  3. Ferris Wheel (Slow)
  4. Funtasy World (Slow)
  5. Reindeer Cruiser (Slow)
  6. Venice Gondola (Slow)

Genting Outdoor Theme Park

The next morning we visited the Genting Outdoor Theme Park. It rainded alittle in the morning, however it stopped. We noticed that some rides have to be paid as it is not included in the entrance fee. We took rides on the following and these are included in the entrance fee:

  1. Boating (Slow)
  2. Bumper Boat (Slow)
  3. Cyclone (Fast)
  4. Dinosaurland (Slow)
  5. Flying Dragon (Moderate fast – Fast)
  6. Grand Prix Fun Kart (Moderate fast – Fast)
  7. Matahari (Slow)
  8. Monorail (Moderate fast)
  9. Pirate Ship (Moderate fast)
  10. Pirate Train (Moderate fast)
  11. Space Shot (Very Fast)
  12. Spinner (Fast)
  13. Super Toboggan (Moderate fast – Fast)

Out of the 13 rides, we had the most adrenalin rush from the Space Shot ride. A word of advise, only ride it with an empty stomach. We left at about 4pm to explore the hotels and casinos

Hotel exploration

We exit from the outdoor theme part main entrance. The shopping path we took connected us to all the hotels like what we have at City Link at City Hall in Singapore. First we visited the Resort Hotel. It looked like it was under some renovation. Next we walked to Genting hotel and then to Highlands hotel . Highlands hotel look the most grandeur.

Casino exploration

We visited the casinos at First World hotel and Genting hotel. We only tried our luck on the jacpot machines and not the card games. It was thrilling and exciting though we did not win anything, its more how long can our $10 last. Haha. Btw, the air of the casinos are filled with smoke and many people tend to light up in there. After dinner we headed back to the jacpot area and later walked back to our hotel to turn in.

Going home

We left Genting at 3pm. It was a 6 hour bus ride back to Singapore. We stopped at Chong Pang Johor Bahru for a light dinner. On the way I noticed that street lamps only appeared when there is a major junction and the rest of the way was mostly dark. Our coach returned by the second link through the Tuas immigration check point which was much faster. We returned home with fond memories of our trip and had the feeling of wanting to stay there longer and not return :D.

What Lies in Our Heart Becomes in the Child

Little Johnny got an F on his math test and his father was extremely upset about it. He asked Johnny what happened.

Johnny replied, “Well, the teacher asked two questions of me; what does 3×2 equal, and I said 6, then she asked me what does 2×3 equal and…”

His father broke in and yelled, “What the hell is the difference!!!”

Little Johnny said, “That’s exactly what I said to the teacher!!!”

Kids really do emulate their parents don’t you find? Probably more so in the ways we treat and feel about other people than even how we interact with our words to them personally. They watch us very carefully don’t they?

If we have prejudices or judgments of others, we really don’t even have to verbally air them, and the child will pick up on that and usually live their lives, accordingly, in that particular way as well.

It’s the thing unsaid, which is the higher power when we live in the midst of children; this appears to affect them most, don’t you think? (I feel a poem coming on…) Unless of course, the child is more highly attuned than the parent, and actually teaches the parent a lesson in living. This happens more than we know as well.

I really believe children are much wiser and more inspired than we could ever imagine. As I’ve said before I have learned more from a child than any adult in my life thus far.Here’s the poem I came up with:

The Small Gardener

It is the thing unsaid that is the higher power

When you live in the world of a child.

Though we talk and teach till we’re blue in the face,

It’s what lies in our hearts that will flower.

When we fear the ‘thing’ we would positively teach

Our fear is the seed that is sown.

For lacking the Light which is always One love,

Fear borrows a power that is not of its own.

The children today are more inspired, I think

Than we with our trembling hearts.

They know not fear till we gift it to them,

With love; yet a secret fear of our own.

How wise are we then when we plant this seed

For the small gardener to water and hoe,

But fear not parents

For the gardener you raise

Is surely wiser than you’d ever know.

Kevin Uhrich; October 25, 2008.

Create Great thoughts – With No Regard to Logic.

Astrology’s Virgo Lucky Days – When Luck and Good Fortune are Yours

People born in the days from August 22nd through September 22nd, have the Astrology sun sign of Virgo the Virgin. You as a Virgo probably know what your basic Horoscope is. But you may not know that certain days, even certain times of day are Lucky just for you. Learn what days and hours each month are Lucky for you and those around you who share your Zodiac sign.

Lucky Moon Phases

The periods of the Moon which are particularly lucky for you tend to match the phase of your sun sign when your birthday falls. Virgos born in the days from August 22nd through August 30th will be especially lucky during the New Moon. Those born between August 31st and September 7th will be lucky during the days when the Moon is in its second quarter. Virgos born from September 8th through September 17th will be especially lucky during the Full Moon. And lastly, Virgos born between September 18th and September 22nd will be luckiest during the Moon’s fourth quarter.

Virgos Lucky Calendar Days

Numerology tells us that Virgo’s celestial number is (8). And Virgo’s ruling planet, Mercury, has a Numerological value of (4). Combining these numbers gives us the sum of (12) which reduces to (3) using fadic addition. Thus, Virgos have a special affinity for the number (3) and tend to enjoy good fortune when the day of the month is a value which likewise reduces to the value (3). All Virgos will be particularly Lucky ob the following days of every month: the 3rd, 12th, 21st, and the 30th. In addition, Virgos should look to play the number (3) in games of chance during these times. Also, games where groups of (3) cards of dice are used will tend to favor Virgos.

Lucky Hours for Virgos

If you were born under Virgo, then the hours of the day which will favor you are those when Mercury rules the sky. If you know when sunrise occurs, you can use the following table and calculate your favorable hours for that day.

Sunday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 3rd, 10th, 17th, and 24th hours past sunrise.

Monday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 7th, 14th, and 21st hours past sunrise.

Tuesday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 4th, 11th, and 18th hours past sunrise.

Wednesday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 1st, 8th, 15th, and 22nd hours past sunrise.

Thursday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 5th, 12th, and 19th hours past sunrise.

Friday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 2nd, 9th, 16th, and 23rd hours past sunrise.

Saturday: The luckiest hours for Virgos will be the 6th, 13th, and 20th hours past sunrise.

Virgos Lucky Partners

In partnership games, Virgos need to try to partner with someone born under one of the following complimentary Horoscope signs: Pisces, Taurus, Cancer, Virgo, Scorpio, or Capricorn. This will bring you your best chance for success.

Combat Flashbacks

A fact is a fact. Memory is a fact. War is a fact. Unfortunately for many veterans the latter two facts collide. Every soldier at some point leaves the battlefield, but the battlefield never leaves the soldier. After soldiers return state side, and stand down from 24/7 battle readiness, vivid images of missions they experienced begin to flash in their minds. These mental images are normal and are termed “flashbacks”.

Neurological research has proven that the brain processes traumatic memory differently than non-traumatic memory. The human brain’s job in reference to non-traumatic memory is that of order and closure. Simply put, the brain receives all the information from an event; it processes all the images, smells and sounds, achieves closure with the associated emotions and then put the event into long-term storage for future retrieval and replay.

When the brain is faced with an intense traumatic event, the processing is put on hold as well as the closure of associated emotions. The brains normal function of order and storage is not achieved and the imprint of the event remains active. At some point, the brain will bring the imprint back to consciousness in order to process the event, make emotional closure and integrate it into long-term storage.

Soldiers from every service are highly trained professionals and when in battle mode, their brain responds and functions differently. In the heat of battle a soldier’s brain is so focused on completion the mission that there is no time to process its impact or make closure.

An example of this can be seen through the experience of a close friend of mine who returned from the Vietnam War. He was a well decorated and was involved in many battles during his two tours in country. Initially his transition back into civilian life went smoothly. He lived with his wife and went back to work in his chosen profession. He lived in a large city where the police relied heavily on helicopters to patrol and less on squad cars. One evening it all changed. A police helicopter began to circle low over neighborhood looking for robbery suspect. That night the police helicopter triggered him into a combat flashback. In his mind he was back in Vietnam. He felt that he along with his brothers-in-arms were under attack. He ran to his closet, pulled out his rifle, ran outside into his backyard and began to fire at the police helicopter. After that he had more combat flashbacks, slept less, became more anxious, and used illegal drugs to attempt to stop the images. On another occasion his wife woke up with him holding a knife to her throat telling her to be silent or they would be found. She left him the next day and did not return. Two months later he lost his job. Stories like this one were not uncommon for Vietnam Veterans.

Many stories just like the one above will happen again and again. America has a new generation of veterans (289,328) that have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan wars and each one have brought back their combat memories. 106,726 (36.9%) veterans received mental health diagnoses. 62,929 (21.8%) were diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In these days of specialization, why isn’t there a teachable skill that would target one memory at a time and help a veteran to process through their combat flashbacks one by one?

Well there is. A guided protocol called Rapid Reduction Technique (RRT) was developed to reduce the effects of traumatic flashbacks and memories for women who have been traumatized as well as abused women. The RRT has been used and studied with this population for the past 9 years. RRT has been successful helping survivors reduce the intensity of the flashbacks, help in the processing all the images, smells and sounds, achieves closure with the associated emotions and facilitate storage into long-term memory. RRT is a teachable and safe skill which works on one memory at a time. RRT is based on revisiting, not reliving or re-experiencing. Flashbacks are an attempt of the brain to achieve order. The RRT protocol teaches a survivor to bring a reoccurring flashback up to consciousness safely, work with the emotions associated with them and assist the brain in

One year ago a pilot study was conducted to see the effectiveness of the Rapid Reduction Technique. The study looked at seven (7) areas of intrusive traumatic flashbacks and memories. Those areas were; inability to function, strength of memory pain, degree of triggering, level of emotional, physical, spiritual and audio pain. 66 women in an inpatient setting with diagnoses of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) participated. All 66 women were experiencing dysfunction in their lives due to flashbacks and memories from childhood and adulthood trauma and abuse. All areas studied showed a significant decrease in level of pain related to their chosen flashbacks or memories.

Within the studied population of the 66 women there were 2 veterans of the Desert Storm War and 1 contractor who served support for the military during the Iraq War. All three had chosen combat or war time memories and reported significant reduction in the intensity and associated pain.

Let’s look at the case of one Navy veteran in the pilot study. Her family had a long line of members who had served in the military. She served 10 years in the military and saw combat in the Desert Storm War. Her flashback was a result of one of her combat experiences. While part of a large supply convoy traveling into Iraq, the trucks she was responsible for got off route. Separated from the main convoy and making a course correction, they were ambushed. In the firefight, she was wounded; another officer was killed along with ground soldiers. Reinforcements helped them to win the firefight, get the trucks and fallen brothers-in-arms out. After months of physical rehabilitation an honorable discharge with commendations and return to civilian life, flashbacks of the ambush began to surface. The reoccurring flashbacks caused her to experience agitation, guilt, bouts of deep depression, constant anxiety, and shame for not completing her mission. She was overwhelmed with severe regret for not being home all her soldiers back alive. She went through years of psychiatric hospitalizations and medication, yet the flashbacks continued. Her everyday life became dysfunctional, relationships failed, sleepless nights and unable to hold a job. Her days were full of anxiety, fear, and pain.

During one of her hospitalizations, she had the opportunity to volunteer for the Rapid Reduction Technique pilot study. She picked her ambush flashback to use in the study. On her pre-test, on a scale of 0 to 4, with “0” being no pain or ability to function due to her flashback and “4” being intense pain or inability to function, she rated all study areas at 4. The only area not rate at a 4 was spiritual pain. She stated that the ambush flashback had caused a “loss of dignity, honor and direction”. Reporting on the post-test at conclusion of experiencing the Rapid Reduction Technique on her ambush flashback, she rated all 7 areas studied at “0”.

What grew out of the pilot study from the success of the 2 veterans and one contractor participations was that Rapid Reduction Technique had possible military application. A military guided protocol called Rapid Reduction Technique – Combat (RRT-C) was developed that would help male and female soldiers. RRT-C has already helped two male Vietnam Veterans.

One of the two was a 62 year old male Vietnam Veteran who had his voice box shattered when he was shot in the neck during a battle at the age of 19. Years after his return to civilian life, he started to experience severe flashbacks of that battle. He reported that the flashbacks would cause him to have increased physical pain in his neck as well as emotional. He went through years of anxiety, fear, worthlessness and a feeling that he let himself and his buddies down by being shot. His life became very dysfunctional. He lost his marriage, and his ability to hold a job. He said he felt “worthless, disgraced and an outcast.” He gave up and isolated himself from society. He resorted to drugs and alcohol to medicate his pain and cope with life. He went through years of being homeless with many admissions to psychiatric hospitalizations and substance abuse programs. Though difficult for him to communicate with others through his electrolarynx, he volunteer to experience the Rapid Reduction Technique – Combat. He reported at the conclusion of his RRT-C experienced on his combat flashback was that the emotional, physical and mental intensity of the flashback was significantly reduced. Week later, his memory of the battle only came up if he recalled it and when he did not experience any pain. He gratefully stated “for the first time in my life since left Vietnam, I am finally free.”

Of course Rapid Reduction Technique-C is not a cure for PTSD, and more study on the RRT-C should be done, but there is promise. RRT-C has proven so far to be effective skill for veterans. It can be taught to veterans so they can take command of their combat flashbacks and finally complete their mission, one battlefield memory at a time.

7 Things to Do and Learn on Your Palm Springs Vacation

1 Hike the canyons of Palm Springs

Palm Springs is a hiker’s paradise, which is evident by the many hiking trails mapped out in and around its numerous scenic canyons and gorges. Here the diversity of wildlife is as contrasting as the breathtaking landscape. From catching a glimpse of the rare and endangered Bighorn Sheep to watching the clever antics of the smallest desert creatures, the canyons of Palm Springs are a must see for any visitor to the area.

Tahquitz Canyon is situated on the Agua Caliente Reservation and is one of the most beautiful desert attractions to be found in Palm Springs. Boasting of a spectacular 60-foot waterfall, rock art, ancient irrigation systems, abundant native wildlife and plants, a hike through this unique and diverse canyon will not be forgotten any time soon. Palm Canyon features fifteen miles of mapped trails that gives hikers an intimate glimpse of the area’s indigenous flora and fauna situated against a contrasting, rugged landscape of rocky red and gold gorges and the barren desert lands in the distance. Here you can hike, explore, picnic and horseback ride against the breathtaking canyon backdrop.

2 Tour the oases of Palm Springs

A beautiful contrast to the barren desert landscape are the many lush oases of Palm Springs. Consisting mainly of tall Fan Palms, the oases offer more than just respite from the extreme desert temperatures, which descend upon the area daily. The oases of Palm Springs are intricate ecosystems boasting of numerous different kinds of plant and animal life including snakes, rodents, lizards and spiders.

Thousand Palms Oasis is situated on the Coachella Valley Preserve and straddles the San Andreas Fault line. Consisting of emerald green undergrowth, soaring Fan Palms and the endangered Valley Fringe-toed Lizard, the Thousand Palms Oasis is the perfect place to start your tour of the Oases of Palm Springs. The Oasis of Mara, formerly known as Twentynine Palms Oasis, is located in the Joshua Tree National Park. Once revered as an “Oasis of Fertility” by the natives, this oasis is indeed a fertile ground for many types of flora, fauna and wildlife.

3 Entertain your whole family in Palm Springs

What once has been known as a Mecca for the retired, the rich and golf enthusiasts, Palm Springs is beginning to show its inner child. From museums and amusement parks to miniature golf and arcades, there is no end to the family-friendly attractions to be found in Palm Springs.

Located on East Palm Canyon, Camelot Park boasts of activities and entertainment to keep the whole family occupied for hours. At the center of this whimsical attraction is a fantastical castle surrounded by video games, miniature golf, go-carts, bumper boats and much, much more. The Living Desert Wildlife and Botanical Park is located on Portola Avenue, and is full of amazing wildlife and creatures that will be sure to amuse the adults and children alike. Featuring species such as coyotes, the endangered bighorn sheep, cheetahs and meerkats, the Living Desert is a must-see attraction in the Palm Springs area. The park also boats of a discovery center where children can watch demonstrations and have hands-on interactions with small creatures such as snakes, turtles and tarantulas.

4 Tour Palm Springs by bike

There is no better way to get up close and personal with an exotic destination like Palm Springs than by leisurely strolling through the many lush oases and barren landscapes typical of this desert paradise. But hoofing it through the miles and miles of desert attractions in and around Palm Springs can take a great deal of time and energy. That is why it has become very popular to tour Palm Springs by bike, and there are several mapped bike tours and guides dedicated to this popular activity.

One of the most popular bike tour agencies in Palm Springs is Big Wheel Bike Tours. They offer several different courses which range in difficulty from beginner to Advanced and can vary in length from a couple of hours to a full day. Many of the courses meander through breathtaking landscapes and popular tourist attractions.

5 Palm Springs Casinos

Boasting a handful of casinos all featuring low and high-stakes gambling, fine dining and other luxurious attractions, Palm Springs is prepared to take care of all of your gambling wants and needs. In fact, the only hindrance that you may find when it comes to Palm Springs casinos is deciding exactly in which casino you want to place your bets.

No matter what your gaming preference or budget, there is a gaming facility in Palm Springs to meet your every need. From high-stakes Poker and slot machines to Bingo and Blackjack among others, you will find plenty to keep your gambling hand occupied during your stay in Palm Springs. Some of the many casinos in the area include the Palm Springs Spa Resort Casino, the Agua Caliente Casino, the Fantasy Springs Casino and the Trump 29 Spotlight Casino.

6 The Native Americans of Palm Springs

Palm Springs is a desert paradise with sparkling waters, tree-lined canyons and bubbling hot springs. This rich, desert oasis has been the site of civilization for thousands of years beginning with the native inhabitants of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. For centuries, this band of Native Americans lived off of the bounty to be had in this unique desert, ecosystem.

The region was ideal for habitation, and the Agua Caliente took advantage of the resources in the area and survived by living off of the land. They used multitudes of desert plants for food, clothes, medicine and hunted game such as deer, bighorn sheep, rabbits and other small animals. They also used an elaborate irrigation system to aid in the production of crops that were brought by the Spanish including corn, squash, beans and melons.

Sadly, in 1862 a small pox epidemic brought about by the influx of whites into the area almost completely wiped out the Agua Caliente altogether. In 1925, only 50 Agua Caliente remained. Today, there are 240. They still hold the majority of the land in the Palm Springs area and run successful casinos and other tourist attractions in the area.

7 How Palm Springs was named

The first non-Native American to settle in the Palm Springs area was Judge John Guthrie McCallum. Arriving in Palm Springs in 1884 from San Francisco with family in tow, McCallum worked alongside the Native Americans to build a 19 mile stone-lined ditch from the Whitewater River Springs to irrigate the dryer parts of the area.

Continuing throughout the 19th century, numerous explorers, colonizers and soldiers came through the desert and remarked on the lush oasis to be found in the Coachella Valley, but no formal name had been given to the site. Often referred to as Palm Springs, Agua Caliente or Palm Valley, it wasn’t until 1890 when Harry McCallum wrote his address as Palm Springs that the region came to be known under those terms.

From Cloudy to Clear

This has been the summer that nothing seemed clear. The fight for our house wasn’t made clear until July. For a year and a half my husband and I were unaware that we already lost due to the neglegance of our very own lawyer! While we are still in the house, we wanted to enjoy our pool one last time. But, since we couldn’t empty it and start over, we relied on chemicals to clear the water up. No matter what we did, there was an accumaulation of silt and calcium that couldn’t even be vacuumed out. Knowing it had enough chlorine, I still got in to enjoy it. It was frustrating not being able to see the bottom, but I just had to jump in and get wet. We have to learn not to let set backs keep us out of the game.

This experience has shown me something about life. Even when we do everything we can possibly do, things will still get cloudy and we can’t see the whole picture. Life’s contaminations will constantly keep things stirred up but we still must jump right into the middle of it and trust that God will clear it up. If we wait for every little thing to be free from contaminates, we will be waiting a long time. As a child of the God Most High, we learn very early on that this life is not about our comfort. If we have heard the true word of the gospel, we know our favor from God is not based on our “good works” alone. They must be accompanied with faith. This faith is a hope for the things we can’t yet see, but know they are coming. If we didn’t have this kind of hope, we would forever remain lost in a clouded view, not knowing which direction to turn.

Face it, the world is full of sin and contaminates whatever it comes in contact with. But a born again believer can go out among the filth and carnality and not be affected by it. This is the new nature that God gives His children when they come to Christ. It’s nothing we can do, it’s what He has already done. Christ has taken full power and authority over Satan and his minions. He’s a defeated foe, therefore Christ has taught us not to be afraid. We have His name to call upon and Satan has to flee. It’s our job to prepare our minds for an upright and righteous walk amidst the cloudiness of this life. Satan tries to keep things stirred up and discourage our walk. But when we know Who it is we serve, we no longer focus in the natural, but rather the spirtual. Just like my pool, I refused to let the visibility of the water keep me from getting in. Nothing bad happened to me. Our walk with Christ is all mind over matter. We must set our minds on things above, not the things in this world.

“Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:13

Peter is telling us that no matter how cloudy and uncertain the things of this life appear, we must tie up all loose ends of our thinking. The hindrances of the world, must be rejected. We must hope on the things we can’t see, we must stay focused on the future grace of God. A sober spirit is a person who is determined to remain steadfast, have self-control and keep a clear mind. Moral standards must be kept. In other words, keep our priorities straight, don’t become intoxicated with the allurements of the world. And for those of us especially undergoing suffering, should unreservedly live for the future, anticipate our full salvation at Christ’s return.

“As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written, YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.” 1 Peter 1:14-16

God would never ask anything of us unless He knew we could do it. Being holy is the essential part of what defines a Christian. This new life style and conduct radically contrasts our pre-salvation lifestyle. Our holiness is expected of us because it sets us apart. It lets the world see we are different. God’s Word must be treated with respect and reverence. When others can see Christ in us, this brings Him glory.

And just like the filter in our pool, it pumps constantly to purge out the impurities that are circulating around. It can’t get them all, but it remains diligent in its attempt. Just as this filter endures, so it is expected of us to endure the pure Word of God. This is the only filter we have to purge us from cloudy living. God’s Word is the only thing that will save. It keeps our souls from becoming stagnant. If the pump were never on in my pool, the condition of the water would become foul, no matter what kind of chemicals we added. Similar to this. it’s how God’s Word works in our lives. Even if we sat in church every Sunday, unless we worked His Word, our lives would also remain stagnant. His Word only works if we work His Word. This is why James told us to be doers, not hearers only.

“This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 1:19,20

No matter what else is going on around you, as a believer it’s your duty to respond positively to Scripture and eagerly attain every opportunity to know God’s Word and His will for you. We can’t expect to lose our temper when things don’t work out the way we think they should. But how is this done you might be wondering. James tells us this:

“Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls.” James 1:21

Putting off sin and filthy living is a choice. It’s like taking off a coat. No one can make you, but you will be cooler without it. Just because the world is sinning, doesn’t mean you have to. Don’t be like the man who just hears what is right and chooses not to do what is right. Hear God’s Word, and do His Word, even when it looks cloudy. The good that will come of your hope and faith will soon become clear.

“But prove yourselves doers of the word, not merely hearers who delude themselves.” James 1:22

James is warning Christians not to make the serious mistake of miscalculating their spiritual walk. God is not impressed with our church attendance unless it makes a difference in our lives and those around us. He promises that if we remain strong, confident and obedient to Him, He will clear up the cloudy views in our lives. Just jump in, remain hopeful for those things you can’t yet see.

By the way, after three long months of waiting for my pool to clear up, I finally saw the bottom of it the other day.   Swimming  season is now about over, but because we never gave up, we can say it cleared up. I’m confident that the situation over finding another place to live is about to clear up as well.

When God presents you with a cloudy view, take a leap of faith!

Scripture taken from the MacArthur Study Bible, New American Standard version.

A Mothers Day Reflection

My mother is a rare gem. Kind of like the Hope Diamond, only with a much keener sense of fashion. Standing at 6 foot with blonde shoulder length hair and a ready smile, she is able to melt hearts of the young and old.

At the risk of sounding like a cliché, my mom is the best. There is nothing she wouldn’t do for us. Growing up with 2 older siblings, mom worked hard to support the three of us and managed to get her teaching degree. Working thirty hours a week, taking 18 units at a time, no matter how many long hours she worked or studied, she always found time to vacuum the “fido” (spiders, to common folk) from under my bed. This nightly ritual has become a beloved “private” joke.

Another fond memory comes from something that’s not so pleasant. Whenever I had an upset stomach, without fail, my mom would sit in the bathroom with me and make sure my hair was out of my face while my head hung over the toilet. To this day, whenever I’m sick, I still wish my mom was there to hold my hair.

Coming into adulthood and a marriage, with all the responsibilities, I often find myself wanting to just go home and have mom make me hot tea and lend a shoulder to cry on. One can always dream of going back to relive those days and, as I have said, my mom will live for many years in the precious memories of my life. No matter how old I get, in her eyes, I will always be her little girl.

So, not only on Mother’s Day, I say raise a glass and toast the most respectable (and hardest) profession in the world. Here’s to you, Mom. I love you.

Pros and Cons of Using a Laptop With a Backlit Keyboard

Perhaps one of the most underrated features of high-end laptops today is the LED backlit keyboard. There are some people who wouldn’t buy a laptop without it, and other who doesn’t even know it exists as a feature. We’re going to dig into the pros and cons of owning a laptop with this kind of keyboard so you can make the decision for yourself.

Positives: Reasons In Support Of Using a Laptop with an Illuminated Keyboard

1. The most obvious reason: You can use your laptop in the dark!

Many people aren’t able to type without looking at the keys, and if you often find yourself on your laptop in bed at night (with the lights off), having an illuminated keyboard can be a big help.

2. You’re probably using a better computer when you have a backlit keyboard.

One other good reason for owning a laptop that has a backlit keyboard is you’re probably using a better computer when you have a backlit keyboard. This delivers the additional advantage of having other components that are considered “high-end” or “high performance”, which is certain to protect against making the mistake of buying a computer that runs slowly and doesn’t perform well with games (if you’re into that)..

3. It just looks cool.

And then there’s the fact that having an illuminated keyboard is aesthetically pleasing. This is important since it makes you feel good about your purchase, and perhaps allows you to further enjoy whatever it is you’re doing on the computer. Once you take that into consideration, then it seems sensible to own a laptop that has a backlit keyboard.

But that is the good side of laptops with illuminated keyboards. There is also a negative side. Here’s a discussion of some of the negative aspects.

Cons: Points Against Buying a Laptop with a Backlit Keyboard

1. They’re often more expensive.

If you are shopping for a laptop that runs well and is affordable, you might find that these laptops often more expensive. That’s clearly a bad thing. It could be enough reason for avoiding buying it at all.

2. They use more battery power.

This is fine if you always use your laptop plugged in, but if you travel a lot and expect to use the battery power often, you may find yourself with limited usage time.

3. You simply don’t need it.

A final legitimate reason to avoid buying a laptop that has ones of these keyboards is that you simply don’t need it.. Everyone should consider this point very carefully, considering that it can result in be a reason to steer clear of these computers. You may be better suited spending the money on other features that are more useful to you. owning a laptop that has a backlit keyboard

So that is that. These are the disadvantages and benefits of purchasing a laptop that has a backlit keyboard.. It certainly is not ideal for all of us, yet it definitely is good for some. Hence, think diligently about the reasons mentioned above. Hopefully your final decision process will be aided greatly by the pro and con information brought to you here.

The Health Benefits of Playing Tennis

It has been called the ‘sport for a lifetime.’ Perhaps this is because it is an enjoyable game for people of all ages. Another reason may be the sheer number of health benefits that regular players have. In reality, it is probably a combination of the two. Tennis is a remarkable game with varying levels of simplicity and complexity. For the amateur, it is a fun way to spend an afternoon, and for the professional, it is a nuanced art form that requires the player to be on top of their game both physically and mentally. Let’s see why this game is so beneficial to a person’s health and learn more about the classic game in the process.

What the Studies Found

Medical research has found out some truly incredible things about people who play just an average of three hours of tennis a week. These three hours need to be moderately vigorous in terms of activity. If you play to win, even if you are just out having fun with some friends, then you are doing just fine in terms of effort. In a study conducted by Ralph Paffenbarger, researchers found that three hours of tennis per week reduced a person’s risk of death by any cause by 50 percent! This study examined over 10,000 participants over a 20-year period.

Dr. Joan Finn and her team of researchers at Southern Connecticut State University found that players had higher self-esteems and were more optimistic. Additionally, regular participants were less depressed, anxious, and were less tense. A University of Illinois study concluded that, thanks to the high-level of physical exertion and mental strategy required from the sport, regular participation in tennis matches fosters a continuation of brain development even in older patients.

It Is A Lot of Fun and Can Be Done By Anyone with a Racket and Ball

The problem with a lot of sports like hockey, football, and   swimming  is that they often cost a lot of money to participate in. Tennis can be played anywhere there are courts, and there are public courts all over the country. All you need is a racket and a ball, which are affordable for almost everyone interested in participating. The best part about this game is that you can still play even if you are on your own. All you need in this scenario is a brick wall. You will be able to work your shots, both forehand and backhand, and the ball will return to you every time.

Is it any wonder that this incredible sport is known as the sport for a lifetime? The benefits of participating in only three hours of this game a week are incredible. You won’t even notice you are working out!