The strength and integrity of a company or an individual are the associations they are able to develop.

Cornerstone Home Lending is one of the finest companies in the USA to help families finance their homes.

It is a privilege and honor to have Cornerstone Home Lending as a sponsor of Words of Hope.

Valuable life lessons in integrity.

50 years ago a dynamic young man walked into my office to offer his help with our University of Alaska Nanook basketball team. Since he had an engineering degree, plus rowed crew for the UW Huskies, I was very impressed.

Soon I began calling him the “Dysonian Institute” because of his practical knowledge and wisdom.

For 50 years Fred Dyson, retired Alaska State Senator, has been a trusted and reliable mentor.

Dyson is a master of the Socratic teaching method. He uses questions to get you where he wants you to go.

In my first meeting, Dyson talked basketball for about an hour with me. As he stood to leave my office he said, “Can I ask you a question before I leave?’

Thinking he wanted to know more about basketball I replied, “Of course.”

Turned out the question changed the course of my life. In fact, it was and still is to this day, the most profound question I have ever been asked.

With laser focus and supreme confidence, Dyson asked, “Coach what do you think of Jesus Christ? Someday at another time, I’d like to talk about it.”

One pearl from the Dyson Institute is, “If God takes something away from you he will give you something better if you trust him.”

IF, is possibly the most powerful two-letter word in the English language.

Dyson’s Pearl has IF in it twice. IF God takes it away, (we get something better). IF we trust him!

Over the years this pearl of wisdom has been proven to me over and over.

Countless times I have counseled heartbroken lovers who have been tossed aside for another. With tenderness, it is my joy to tell them this may be the best thing that has ever happened to them.

With joy, I have been privileged to be at their weddings with the new love of their lives, that surpasses their former relationship a hundredfold.

With humor, I have delighted them with teasing. Just think where you would be IF you were married to what you thought was the love of your life! (Always good to be able to laugh with those you know love you).

As I write this Word of Hope, I suspect emails or calls from dear friends who gave me the honor of walking through their pain, now living with their 100 fold life partner.

On a smaller scale yet significant from an integrity standpoint. We stopped for a light dinner at a favorite place.

Susie’s hot dish was lukewarm. As I left I gently said to a waiter at the counter, “You might want to make sure your dish is hot for future customers.”  He said, “Thank you”; then departed to do his work.

Standing nearby was another employee. Before you could say Holy Cow she had a 10 dollar bill in my hand. Integrity strikes.

The rest of the story. Our car sales guy was sick about the car Susie purchased to replace her totaled car. Presently in our driveway sits a superior auto for the same price. Shawn delivered integrity in spades. Integrity strikes again. (For the backstory read: Not My Plan).

Clearly, those who trust in Jesus will never be disappointed. My spiritual struggle in 1967 was simple, not complex. IF I totally surrender life to Jesus Christ, He will take away my basketball.

Soon I discovered, only after I trusted Him, was he going to use NBC Camps and not just 10, 20 or 30 fold, but 100 fold.

Gratitude wins every time.

“Be joyful always, pray without ceasing, in all things give thanks for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Easy to live? No!

In fact, it is impossible, unless we die to self each day and believe, “We can do all things through Christ who gives us the strength.”

Sponsored in part by Cornerstone Home Lending