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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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Are Pelosi’s “Green Investments” A Conflict Of Interest?

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she is on a mission to save the planet.  She has consistently refused to allow a vote on drilling for oil because she says she believes it is all a hoax.  But maybe Speaker Pelosi has other reasons.

The dcexaminer.com has recently revealed what that motive might be.  The good Speaker owns stock in Clean Energy Fuels Corporation (CEFC).  Have you ever heard of T. Boone Pickens?  Yes, I’m referring to the Texas oil billionaire who is now promoting his new wind-power business on television.  CEFC is T. Boone’s baby.  This project will depend on federal subsidies and, don’t forget, high oil prices along with continued government restrictions on drilling for oil in the US.

Wind power may be useful, but it is not as reliable as the commercials paint it to be.  This, however, is not my point.  Does anyone else see a possible conflict of interest here?  If gasoline prices remain high because Congress refuses to make drilling our number one economic priority, Pelosi stands to make substantial profits in the wind-power business.  She is also in a position to help push federal subsidies toward CEFC.  I wonder how many other national elected officials have invested in this deal along with Al Gore’s carbon credits?  According to the dcexaminer.com:

“A search of Pelosi’s official web site found no announcement of the investment in the Pickens operation. A request to the Speaker’s official spokesman yesterday for information about the investment went unanswered. Coincidentally, Pelosi’s investment came the same month as the House passed the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007, which she hailed as making the Congress over which she helps preside “the most open and honest in history.” There are numerous ways Pelosi could provide assistance to . . . Pickens, including helping secure federal tax advantages. Pickens expects at least 15 percent profits on the wind farm and associated initiatives. At . . . $14 per share value, Pelosi appears to own between 7,000 and 17,000 shares.”

By the way, Pelosi and Pickens are already encountering opposition to their little business deal.  Pelosi’s friends, the radical environmentalist groups around the country, are blocking both wind-power and solar-power production because they believe the wires carrying the electricity would disturb the beauty of the natural landscape and endanger some wild animals.  Who would have thought?

Do You Know Your Life’s Purpose?

“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33)

Eric Liddell, the famous Olympic athlete and missionary to China said:

“As Christians, I challenge you.  Have a great aim – have a great standard – make Jesus your ideal . . . make Him an ideal not merely to be admired but also to be followed.”

It may sound obvious, but the longer I live – the stronger is my conviction that success should primarily be attributed to having a purpose.  Knowing your purpose gives you a powerful advantage in life.  The person who wants to do something great with his life finds a purpose.  Others only look for an excuse.  A purpose adds value to your daily life.  I like these words from Albert Einstein: “Try not to become a man of success but rather try to become a man of value.”  Real success only has value when it is driven by a great purpose.

Abraham Kuyper (1837 – 1920) was a Dutch theologian and politician. After serving as a pastor for eleven years, he founded a Calvinist-oriented newspaper and was elected to the national assembly (1874).  To provide Calvinist training for pastors, he founded the Free University at Amsterdam (1880), and in 1892 he founded the Reformed Churches in The Netherlands.  He was prime minister of The Netherlands from 1901 – 05.

Abraham Kuyper was a man of value.  What was the great ambition that drove him to such achievements?  As I was reading one day, I ran across a quote of Kuyper’s that provides a very insightful observation into his life.  I think of this quote as his statement of purpose.  It has been a challenge to me.  Kuyper said:

“One desire has been the ruling passion of my life.  One high motive has acted like a spur upon my mind and soul.  And sooner should I seek escape from the sacred necessity that is laid upon me, let the breath of life fail me.  It is this: That in spite of all worldly opposition, God’s holy ordinances shall be established again in the home, in the school and in the State for the good of the people; to carve as it were into the conscience of the nation the ordinances of the Lord, to which the Bible and Creation bear witness, until the nation pays homage again to God.”

I close with an old proverb which I paraphrase from memory, “The crowd, the world, and sometimes – even the grave will move aside for the man who has a purpose in life, but the aimless drifter will be pushed aside.”

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