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By George Guzzardo

I don't find it very funny that just about every civil liberties organization today couldn't recall the name of the man who has coined the phrase, "All men are created equal."  This man's name who influenced our country's founders on civil and religious liberty is basically obscure today.  Samuel Rutherford has been called the greatest theologian of the "Scottish Reformation", and given credit for influencing the concept of connecting natural law and Scriptural Revelation to limited government. Yet, his name is virtually unknown.

Samuel Rutherford was born in Nisbet Scotland in 1600.  He attended the University of Edinburgh in 1617.  In 1623 he became regent of Humanity (professor of Latin).  Because of his non conformity to King Charles I regulations against the doctrines of the Reformation, he was banished from this position in 1627.  He went on to become professor of Divinity at St. Andrews in 1638 after religious liberties were established by parliament.  Rutherford was also appointed to the Westminster Assembly in 1643 and was a major influence on the Shorter Catechism.

He has been most influential for his writings although he also had a flourishing ministry.  'The Letters of Samuel Rutherford' have become a religious classic and should be a staple in the library for every student of great theological writings. The letters were a result of his caring for his ailing wife and his children's lengthy illness.  His enduring suffering and sorrow developed strength of character and a deepened communion with Christ.  Of his Letters, Charles Spurgeon wrote, "When we are dead and gone let the world know that Spurgeon held Rutherford's letters to be the nearest thing to inspiration which can be found in all the writings of mere men."   His most influential work toward the thinking of rule of natural law and Scripture was "Lex Rex" subtitled, "The Law and the Prince."  In that writing he presented the theory of limited government and

Who are you?


By Claude Hamilton

Building my business was hard. At times, it was overwhelming, discouraging, and frustrating. But it was worth every bit of work, energy, and sleepless night. Because if it weren’t for my business, I may not have ever learned who I really am.

Lana and I really struggled to get through what leadership expert Ken Blanchard called "the Dissatisfaction stage". It took us quite awhile to develop the attitude that we needed to get through that phase, but we did it. And, oddly enough, I think one of my biggest motivators was a statistic that I heard on television one day. The show said that the person who stays home with his or her kids will spend more time with them by the time the child is three, than someone who has a nine-to-five job will over eighteen years. When I heard that data, I just sat there, stunned, thinking about the implications.

Later that day, I told Lana that I really felt like we had to make a change. I told her about the findings, and that I couldn’t stand the idea of missing out on so much of my children’s lives. In the end, we decided that the answer was to continue building my business. If we succeeded, it offered the best of both worlds—time with my family and the financial freedom to do many of the things we wanted to be able to do together.

So Lana and I decided to reapply ourselves and really go for it. We refocused and pushed through the Dissatisfaction stage. And it wasn’t easy. We didn’t see much success in the first couple of years, and throughout the third and fourth years, we were still constantly learning lessons.

But I’m grateful for those lessons, because they made me who I am. As I struggled to make important business decisions, I would often find myself asking, “who am I?”. And at times, that was a difficult question to answer. But eventually I figured it out. I knew that, in a perfect world, I would spend all day at home, with my wife and children. But I also kn



By Tim Marks

Henry Ford wisely said, “Don’t find fault.  Find a remedy.”  Why do people feel the need to point out other people’s mistakes?  Well, it could be they genuinely want the other person to improve.  It could be that they want to help.  Or it could be that they are trying to knock the other person down a few pegs so they themselves feel powerful in comparison. shares, “Criticism is futile, because it puts a person on the defensive and causes him to justify himself.  Criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a person’s pride and arouses resentment.  Criticism is vain, because in judging others, we regard ourselves as more righteous than they.”

For some people, their self-esteem and identity is tied to “being right” and “being knowledgeable”.  They feel that they are a worthwhile person if they are correct, and more importantly, if other people know it.  If you derive your self-esteem from being right… why?  Why is that your source of self-esteem?  Do you feel embarrassed being wrong or making a mistake?  Does that seem rational to you?  Surely you must realize that you can’t be right all of the time.  You only need to be right 51% of the time and you would make a billion dollars on the stock market this year!  If someone was right all the time, they’d have easily developed the cure for cancer, brought peace to the Middle East, and found a solution to world hunger.  Since these haven’t been accomplished, you may want to lower your estimation of yourself being “all knowing” a notch, Scooter.  Again, only one man ever was, and no one ever will be again.  Compulsively correcting people is purely an ego game, and as shares, “One day, you will come to an understanding that in a pretentious game of gratifying your ego, you have auctioned the inner beauty of your soul.”

I have a family member whom I love very much who is, and has always been, right about everything (in their eyes).  It’s a sad condition because it h

Marriage – The Leadership Team Begins at Home


By Orrin Woodward

The sad state of most marriages, nearly half ending in divorce, most others in a tedious state of non-aggression, but hardly any truly happy, concerns me.  I do not claim to have all the answers, nor even most of the answers, but I have learned a few lessons in my 18 years of marriage to one of the strongest willed ladies I have ever met.  In truth, I am sure she would say I am the strong willed one.  Don’t get me wrong, Laurie and I love each other dearly, but that didn’t make our marriage happy or workable in the early days.  Bringing baggage into a marriage, having to be right, and suffering from low self-esteem are not recipe’s for success in anyone’s marriage book.  What are the key principles to apply and what are the principles to avoid in building a happy marriage?  This was the question that led Laurie and me on a lifetime quest to improve our own marriage, and subsequently, hopefully, any marriage in our community.   As God led us to faith in His Son, we started asking questions on what our Biblical roles were as a husband and a wife.

How can two people who love each other enough to publicly profess it in a marriage ceremony end up months, if not weeks after, in a crazy cycle of turmoil and despair?  Who is the leader in a marriage?  What does the leader do?  Is it true that anything with two heads is a freak?  I teach men that they are responsible for the results, good or bad, in their household.  This doesn’t mean they they should be a dictator, in fact, it means nearly the opposite since a leader is defined as a servant.  Yes, I am the leader of my family, but that just means that I am the first to sacrifice when sacrifice is needed, that I am the first to accept responsibility when things go wrong, and that I must develop a plan to rescue my family if they need rescuing. Leaders cannot pass the buck and men have been given the responsibility to lead their families whether that assignment is easy or not.  Just as there cannot be tw

Doesn't Matter, Doesn't Matter, Doesn't Matter


By Chris Brady

Sometimes, things are going to hit you.  Details will try to overwhelm you.  Obstacles will pop up in your path.  That's just the way life is.  And if you're a leader in hot pursuit of a vision, its best to learn to expect it. After all, resistance is what build strong muscles.  Ships are safe in the harbor but they aren't made for the harbor.  Strong sailors aren't made in calm seas.  And leaders are just going to have to develop thick skin.

One little phrase I started thinking to myself a long time ago was, "Doesn't Matter, Doesn't Matter, Doesn't Matter."  What I meant by this was that the goal remained the same, the obstacles were just there to add color to the story.  And maybe I'm just weird (okay, maybe it's more than a maybe) but it worked for me.  It helped me remember that the big picture was still the big picture.  The goal was set in stone and the path in sand.

As long as you've got the vision clear in your mind, and you've got the goal set in stone, perhaps keeping this little philosophy in your head will help you advance.  It doesn't matter what happens, it's how you respond.  Respond appropriately with a little self-encouragement and press on.  As Ghandi said, "Your playing small does not serve the world."  So play big.  Expect obstacles.  And realize that those obstacles don't matter!