Archive for the Positively Speaking Category

“Final Column” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Final Column" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Well, this is it:  my final Positively Speaking newspaper column. I launched it 26 years ago after being in Hayward only a couple of weeks.  Since I had written a column for teens in California called “Teen Talk”, I brought a few samples to the editor, Gary Pennington, to see if he would like something similar for the Record. He enthusiastically gave me the invitation to write, and so my column, “Teen Talk” began.   The first week someone complained about it, but Gary shut them up and stood with me.  I’m so glad he did! After a few years,

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“My New Adventure” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"My New Adventure" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Next week will be my last Positively Speaking newspaper column.  I’ve cranked them out weekly for nearly 26 years (with quite a few re-runs along the way) but now it’s time to move on to a new chapter. This is a bitter-sweet season in my life as March 12 will be my last Sunday as pastor of Hayward Wesleyan Church. No, I am not retiring.   I have accepted the invitation to join the faculty of Southern Wesleyan University in Central, South Carolina to prepare the next generation of pastors.   By doing this, I’m multiplying my influence far beyond a local

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“Think Sarcasm is Funny? Think Again.” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Think Sarcasm is Funny? Think Again." // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Today’s column, was written by Dr. Clifford M, Lazarus, co-founder and director of The Lazarus Institute in New Jersey.   It is reprinted here with his permission. ———————– If you want to be happier and improve your relationships, cut out sarcasm since sarcasm is actually hostility disguised as humor.  Despite smiling outwardly, most people who receive sarcastic comments feel put down and usually think the sarcastic person is a jerk.  Indeed, it’s not surprising that the origin of the word sarcasm derives from the Greek word “sarkazein” which literally means “to tear or strip the flesh off.”  Hence, it’s no wonder

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“Whose Neighbor Am I?” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Whose Neighbor Am I?" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

One day, a rule-bound lawyer, hoping to get a checklist to prove he was good enough, approached Jesus and asked, “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” Like a wise rabbi, Jesus didn’t give an answer, but countered the question with his own question, “What is written in the Law?  How do you read it?” The lawyer was thrilled, because he knew the answer to that one!  Proudly, he rattled off something he learned in the synagogue as a child years ago, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all

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“Bring Your Best Self to It” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Bring Your Best Self to It" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

I recently was invited to South Carolina to interview for a faculty position at a wonderful Christian university.  They are looking for someone to lead their program to train pastors. At this point, they are still in the interviewing process and have not yet made their selection.  If I am the one chosen, it will be a very unconventional decision.  A person in this role normally has a PhD and a long career in academia.  I have neither.  But I do bring a wealth of practical experience, positive energy, and pastoral perspective. As I prepared to go, I expressed concerns

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“A Life that Preaches” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"A Life that Preaches" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Daddy was a preacher.  On Sunday mornings, he thundered truth from the pulpit — and sometimes the thunder came in a whisper.  He whispered a word of grace which quietly entered our hearts and then thundered in the inside. Some preachers yell because there’s no substance.  It’s loud, but hollow and doesn’t sink any further than the earmuffs.  But Daddy’s message always sank deep into the soul and then exploded. He wasn’t eloquent.  Reading was a struggle for him, and he never attended seminary.  Sometimes, he felt inadequate.  But Daddy was equipped.  Although he never finished high school, he was

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“Live the Adventure” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Live the Adventure" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

You can’t enjoy the summit if you don’t climb the mountain. You can’t parachute and stay in the plane. You can’t take the dive if you don’t get off the board. You can’t enjoy the story if you don’t open the book. You can’t steal second with a foot on first. You can’t score a touchdown and stay in the huddle. You can’t ski the hill if you don’t take the lift. You can’t take the train if you don’t buy the ticket. You can’t catch the fish if you don’t cast the line. You can’t sing your song if

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Forget Yourself into Greatness // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Forget Yourself into Greatness // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

“Love your neighbor as yourself.” “Who is my neighbor?” “Anybody in need.” “How do I love my neighbor?” “With actions that help.” “What keeps me from loving my neighbor?” “Selfishness.” “How can I stop being so selfish?” “Forget yourself into greatness.” Consider these words from William Arthur Ward of Texas Wesleyan University: If you are wise, you will forget yourself into greatness. Forget your rights, but remember your responsibilities. Forget your inconveniences, but remember your blessings. Forget your own accomplishments, but remember your obligations. Follow the examples of Florence Nightingale, of Albert Schweitzer, of Abraham Lincoln, of Tom Dooley, and forget yourself

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“Change Is Life and Life is Change” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Change Is Life and Life is Change" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

For many years, I’ve driven the same winding road through the Ohio countryside to visit my mother. One village on this route seems firmly determined not to change. Year after year, I drove by the same buildings, businesses and homes.  Nobody added anything new – not even a coat of paint. In our fast-paced culture where change occurs faster than the speed of light, it felt somewhat comforting to drive through this meager hamlet so committed to yesterday.  Very few people these days appreciate heritage and historical context. The folks in that community were committed to keeping everything the same.

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“Words Matter” // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

"Words Matter" // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Today’s column was written by my friend, Ron McClung, Assistant General Secretary of the Wesleyan Church:   Words matter. So in this New Year, how will you measure your words so they have the greatest benefit? Someone suggested six very important words: “I admit I made a mistake.” That can be hard to say. We all know we’re human and when we catch our own mistake, we would like for people to give us a little grace and not make too big a deal out of it. However, when someone else notices our mistake first, it’s a little harder to

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