WOW! I can't BELIEVE It today would have been Michael Jackson 56th Birthday if he had only live to see it. On this day August 29,1958 Michael Joseph Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana. My mind can't believe he is gone when I woke up this Morning and turned on the T.V. the music channel that I was watching was taking time out of there regular programming to Salute the KING OF POP that's truly an Honor for a Man that meant so much to Millions. It's seem like only yesterday when I hear his music, his music puts a BIG Smile on my face. So as we ALL Celebrate the Life of Michael Jackson I just want to leave you with a story that was written by Zack O'Malley Greenburg for Forbes Magazine.
If Michael Jackson were still alive, tomorrow would be his 56th birthday. And though he passed away more than five years ago, fans across the country–from his onetime home of Las Vegas to his birthplace of Gary, Indiana–and around the globe will be celebrating the King of Pop as though he never left.
In many ways, he hasn’t. Songs from his latest posthumous album, Xscape, have been soaring across the summer airwaves. And from a financial perspective, Jackson couldn’t be more alive: he’s raked in over $700 million in the past half-decade–the most lucrative stretch of his career since the late 1980s–and has out-earned every living act measured by FORBES over that span.
Yet amidst this Jacksonian renaissance, a few stubborn narratives persist in corners of the mainstream and tabloid media, even as his image and finances have undergone something of a metamorphosis. That unfortunate reality is one of the more fascinating ones I’ve observed since releasing my book, Michael Jackson, Inc., earlier this summer.
The book has put me in a unique position to observe such trends. Thanks to the magic of the internet—Google GOOGL +0.22% alerts and Twitter TWTR +0.65% updates, in particular—I’ve been able to find most of the reviews of the book within hours of their publication.
As a writer, I’ve been mostly pleased with the reactions to Michael Jackson, Inc. It’s been covered by outlets from Billboard to Vibe to the Chicago Tribune. Amazon named it Book of the Month in Business & Leadership and USA Today dubbed it one of “the hottest titles this season,” while Kirkus called it “a useful, informative examination” and Ebony said it “offers a perspective fans around the world may have never seen.”
But in a couple of cases, the reviews barely addressed the book at all; rather, they merely seemed like excuses to rehash old arguments and heap judgment on the King of Pop. Quite a few would be better characterized not as reviews of Michael Jackson, Inc., but of Michael Jackson himself.
For instance, the Wall Street Journal review began with the writer’s opinions of the King of Pop, describing him as “a minor god,” “a tricky deity,” “perhaps a child molester” and so forth (never mind the fact that Jackson was cleared of all charges leveled against him).
The Washington Post, meanwhile, focused on Jackson’s “oddball exploits and alleged crimes,” complaining that the book “leaves out the juicy stuff to focus on the pop icon as a business entity” (despite the fact that delving into the finances of Jackson’s career is the title’s stated purpose).
To be clear: as an author, I’m thrilled that such publications took an interest in my work, and I certainly respect the right of fellow writers to state their opinions, even if I disagree with them. But it amazed me that those refrains still often surround any exploration of Jackson’s life and legacy, even one focused on his finances.
Those sorts of attitudes have been noticed by others who’ve studied Jackson in depth, from my friend Joe Vogel, author of Man in the Music, to the late James Baldwin, who famously wrote:
The Michael Jackson cacophony is fascinating in that it is not about Jackson at all. … He will not swiftly be forgiven for having turned so many tables, for he damn sure grabbed the brass ring, and the man who broke the bank at Monte Carlo has nothing on Michael. All that noise is about America, as the dishonest custodian of black life and wealth; the blacks, especially males, in America; and the burning, buried American guilt.”
Jackson indeed turned many tables. And though few will deny his eccentricity, his many accomplishments include serving as the Jackie Robinson of the music video era. He forced MTV, once the province of white rockers, to add the work of black artists to heavy rotation, beginning with “Billie Jean.”
By buying the Beatles’ publishing catalogue in 1985, Jackson flipped the paradigm of artist-as-employee on its head, replacing it with the notion of artist-as-owner. He then pioneered new ways of monetizing superstardom, launching his own clothing line, sneakers, video games and more–paving the way for modern celebrity-moguls like Jay Z and Diddy.
Though those narratives are making progress, they haven’t sunk in across all corners of the press. As journalists, we have a duty to push aside subjective notions and focus on the objective truth. In the case of Jackson, it seems for many observers the subjective has settled over the years like sediment at the bottom of an ancient ocean, forming a solid mass still sometimes mistaken for objectivity.
Five years after Jackson’s death, some of those layers seem to have been worn away, judging by the resurgence of his work–his earnings provide unmistakable evidence of a shift. Given his continued impact on global culture and the business of entertainment, it seems likely that trend will continue, but there’s still a ways to go before the objective fully overcomes the subjective.
That’s a good goal to set as a future birthday present for the King of Pop.
Here are some of my Favorite videos by Michael Jackson
As we are gearing up for the Labor day weekend we are at the end of Summer as we know it we have had a BLAST! this Summer with ALL that has transpired over the course of this Summer so as we take time to spend with family and friends let's reflect on How God brought us ALL through the wilds of this Summer. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. —Luke 6:37
If you’re like me, you seldom read the full text of contracts for online services before you agree to them. They go on for pages, and most of the legal jargon makes no sense to ordinary people like me.
I was quite surprised, therefore, when a friend from Africa made me aware of this one-of-a-kind service agreement for online software. Instead of a wordy license telling people how not to use it, the developer offers a simple blessing urging people to use it for good:
May you do good and not evil. May you find forgiveness for yourself and forgive others. May you share freely, never taking more than you give.
At first I thought, Wow. Imagine if more terms of service agreements were written as blessings instead of legal documents. Then I thought, The agreement Jesus makes with us is like that. He offers us forgiveness of sin, peace with God, and the presence of the Holy Spirit. In return, all He asks is that we do good (Gal. 6:10), forgive as we’ve been forgiven (Luke 6:37), and love others as He loves us (John 13:34).
The beauty of Jesus’ agreement with us is that even though we fail to live up to the terms, we still receive the blessing. —Julie Ackerman Link
Bestowed with benefits daily,
Sent from the Father above;
Mercies and blessings abounding,
Gifts of His marvelous love. —Anon.
As we have opportunity, let us do good to all. —Galatians 6:10
Bible in a year: Psalms 126-128; 1 Corinthians 10:19-33
In Luke 6:20-49, Luke recorded a sermon by Jesus that is similar to the sermon recorded in Matthew 5–7. Some scholars believe it was the same sermon, while others say that Jesus taught in two different settings. In Matthew, he taught it “on a mountain” (5:1), while here, Jesus taught these same truths “on a level place” (Luke 6:17).
OK Some many of you may know that I have been a HUGH Prince Supporter all of my life and I'm so EXCITED about this new TRUCK LOAD of Funk and Soul that Prince is getting ready to dish out this Fall. It's be almost 4 years since our Purple King Prince has release an album the last album that was release by Prince was 20Ten but that was NOT release her in the United State but it was release Overseas in the London Daily Mail. If you knew how Prince operated you would know that he has be dropping hits of Purple Funk and Soul for quite sometime now, but this Fall expect 2 new albums from the Purple one himself one that's called Art Official Age which is his own personal CD and the second one which is by is ALL Female Rock Band called 3RDEYEGIRL PLECTRUMELECTRUM these album's will be release on September 30. So I just want to WARN you that this is only the beginning there is more to come from the Purple Mastermind himself so ALWAYS keep your 3RD EYE open because I'm telling you there is definitely more in store for ALL the PURPLE HIPPIES that have been waiting for quite a long time for some new music from PRINCE. As many may know I'm over the MOON and filled with so much EXCITEMENT and JOY to experience this Next Chapter of musical GREATNESS brought on by none other than Prince himself. I'm Thankful and Grateful to GOD for the life and the music that Prince as given us these 40 plus years, I'm looking forward to the next 40 plus years of PURPLE FUNK ,SOUL, LAUGHTER, FAMILY, and FRIENDS. Here is ALL the buzz on Prince and his 2 Brand New Albums.
3RDEYEGIRL on Good Morning America
Listen to Prince’s brand new single ‘CLOUDS’ featuring Lianne La Havas
All good things come to those who wait...
2 New Albums on their way!!!
And 'Art Official Age' to be released 29th Sept. pre-order now on
We are starting the new week with alot to be GRATEFUL for and as we begin this new week let's keep in mind the attitude of gratitude. A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father. —John 16:16
I don’t know how it works where you live, but when I have to call for a repair for one of my appliances, the company says something like, “The repairman will be there between 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.” Since I don’t know when the repair person will arrive, all I can do is wait.
Jesus told His followers that He would soon be leaving them and they would need to wait for His return in “a little while” (John 16:16). After His resurrection, they saw Him again and they hoped He would be establishing His kingdom on earth at that time. But He told them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority” (Acts 1:7). They would have to wait even longer.
But they were to do more than wait. Jesus told His followers that they were to “be witnesses to [Him] in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (v.8). And He gave them the Holy Spirit to empower them to do this.
We still wait for Jesus’ return. And while we do, it’s our delight, in the Holy Spirit’s power, to tell and show others who He is, what He has done for all of us through His death and resurrection, and that He has promised to return. —Anne Cetas
Dear Lord, we love You so much. We want
our words and our lives to be a witness
of Your goodness and grace. Please use
us in ways we never thought possible.
Wait and witness till Jesus returns.
Bible in a year: Psalm 119:1-88; 1 Corinthians 7:20-40
YES! Today is Friday another week has come and gone as we take time to reflect on this week here is some words of wisdom. Unto the upright there arises light in the darkness; he is gracious, and full of compassion. —Psalm 112:4
In the African country where my friend Roxanne lives, water is a precious commodity. People often have to travel long distances to collect water from small, contaminated creeks—leading to sickness and death. It’s difficult for organizations like orphanages and churches to serve the people because of a lack of water. But that’s beginning to change.
Through Roxanne’s leadership and the unselfish gifts of some loving people in established churches, clean water wells are being dug. At least six new wells are now operational, allowing churches to be centers of hope and encouragement. A health center and a home for 700 orphans will also be able to be opened because of access to water.
That’s the kind of love that can flow from believers in Christ when we have experienced the love and generosity of God. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13 that if we don’t have love, our voices clang on people’s ears and our faith means nothing. And the apostle John says that if we have material possessions and see others in need and take action, that’s evidence that God’s love is abiding in us (1 John 3:16).
God desires that we deal “graciously” (Ps. 112:5) with those in need, for His heart is gracious toward us. —Dave Branon
Be not weary in your serving;
Do your best for those in need;
Kindnesses will be rewarded
By the Lord who prompts the deed. —Anon.
Kindness is Christianity with its working clothes on.
Bible in a year: Psalms 110-112; 1 Corinthians 5
While there is no designation of the author of Psalm 112, the common speculation is for Davidic authorship. It may well have been written as a companion to Psalm 111. In both songs, the verses are written in alphabetical order, and both share the theme of the characteristics and life of the person blessed by God. Psalm 111 focuses on the God who blesses, while Psalm 112 focuses on the person who is blessed.
Here is this month CCFA Newsletter. Letter from Rick Geswell, CCFA President & CEO
Rick Geswell, CCFA President and CEO
Great news – we have an incredible $90,000 match challenge! Thanks to the generosity of Mark and Lisa Schneider, whose children both have IBD, every donation made by 9/15 will be doubled up to $90,000. This match opportunity is in honor of all the kids out there who are currently struggling with IBD.
Together with the Schneiders, we can raise a total of $180,000 towards critical research for treatments and cures. Help us meet our $90,000 match and improve the lives of everyone living with IBD – make a gift today.
Going Inside the Gut
Did you know that approximately 90% of the cells on and in your body aren't you? They are the trillions of microscopic bacteria and viruses that make up the human microbiome. The gut's microbiome has an incredibly complex mix of bacteria, viruses and fungi, and CCFA's innovative research has identified a link between these gut bacteria and certain genes in IBD patients. But there's more to be done. Watch the video.
IBD and College
If you or a family member is headed off to college, you may be concerned about IBD management while at school. We recommend developing a 504 plan with the school's disability office. Though these plans do not require the college to establish guidelines accommodating the student, the regulations prohibit discriminations in admissions and require academic adjustments to be made in order to eliminate or prevent discrimination. Many colleges are willing to establish plans to help students – look into it!
Work Up a Sweat for IBD
Do you want to win entry into the pinnacle of endurance events with Team Challenge at the 2015 IRONMAN World Championships in Kona, HI?
Enter your bid today!
AUGUST 2014 ISSUE
The Difference between IBD and IBS
IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) and IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) both affect the gastrointestinal tract, but they are not the same. IBD is a group of chronic, long-term inflammatory diseases in which the body's own immune system attacks the digestive system. Approximately 1.4 million Americans have IBD.
IBS, which affects over 40 million people, is a condition that disturbs the movement of the intestine's muscle lining, causing uncomfortable symptoms. Remember, IBD patients can also suffer from IBS. Learn more.
Double Your Support
Donate by 9/15 and your gift will be matched, dollar for dollar, up to $90,000. Don't miss your chance to double your support for IBD treatments and cures – make a gift today!
Team Challenge Participants
Treatments Webcast Archive Now Available!
If you missed our live educational webcast last month titled What's Best for Me? Treatment Options in IBD, you can now watch the archived recording of the program at your convenience. Learn more about various IBD treatment options and the information you'll need to make the choice that's best for you. Watch now.
Will You Take Steps this Fall?
Take Steps is gearing up for our fall season with over 45 walks scheduled across the country. Become a team captain, recruit your friends, family and co-workers and walk for IBD treatments and cures with the people who matter most to you. Please register today!
IBD Clinical Trials & Other Studies
CCFA provides a comprehensive database of studies, clinical trials and other research on Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. One recently added study is:
• A Phase III Randomized, Double Blind, Placebo-controlled, Multicenter, Parallel Group Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of Fixed-dose Combination RHB-104 in subjects with moderately to severely active Crohn's disease conducted by RedHill Biopharma
Deciding whether to participate in a clinical trial is an important personal decision, best made with a full understanding of the drug development process and a participant's role.
Here we go the New week begins let's go through this week with strong optimism with these words. Surely I am coming quickly. —Revelation 22:20
In a German prison camp in World War II, undiscovered by the guards, some Americans built a homemade radio. One day news came that the German high command had surrendered, ending the war. Because of a communications breakdown, however, the guards did not yet know this. As word spread among the prisoners, a loud celebration broke out. For 3 days, they sang, waved at guards, and shared jokes over meals. On the fourth day, they awoke to find that all the Germans had fled. Their waiting had come to an end.
A number of Bible stories center on waiting: Abraham waiting for a child (Gen. 12–21). The Israelites waiting for deliverance from Egypt. Prophets waiting for the fulfillment of their own predictions. The disciples waiting for Jesus to act like the powerful Messiah they anticipated. Jesus’ final words at the end of Revelation are “I am coming quickly,” followed by an urgent, echoing prayer, “Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” (22:20). For this, we still wait.
Here’s the question I ask myself: As we wait, why are we so often fearful and anxious? We can, like the Allied prisoners, act on the good news we say we believe. What is faith in God, after all, but believing in advance what will only make sense in reverse? —Philip Yancey
Faith looks beyond the shadow
Of dread and doubt and fear
And finds the Savior waiting
And always standing near. —French
Waiting tries our faith and so we wait in hope.
Bible in a year: Psalms 100-102; 1 Corinthians 1
After writing of the events that will precede Jesus’ second coming (Rev. 4–22), John assured his readers of the certainty and nearness of Jesus’ return by quoting Him two times: “I am coming quickly” (vv.12,20). John then adds a personal plea, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” (v.20).
FRIDAY is in the House. Yes we have made it to the end of the week here is some words to reflect on as we head into the weekend. “He is not here; for He is risen, as He said.” —Matthew 28:6
I sat quietly at the graveside of my father, waiting for the private family burial of my mother to begin. The funeral director carried the urn that held her ashes. My heart felt numb and my head was in a fog. How can I handle losing them both within just 3 months? In my grief I felt loss and loneliness and a little hopeless facing a future without them.
Then the pastor read about another graveside. On the first day of the week, early in the morning, women went to Jesus’ tomb, carrying spices for His body (Matt. 28:1; Luke 24:1). There they were startled to find an open and empty tomb—and an angel. “Do not be afraid,” he said to them (Matt. 28:5). They didn’t need to be afraid of the empty tomb or of the angel, because he had good news for them.
Hope stirred when I heard the next words: “He is not here; for He is risen, as He said” (v.6). Because Jesus had come back to life, death had been conquered! Jesus reminded His followers just a few days before His death: “Because I live, you will live also” (John 14:19).
Even though we grieve at the loss of our loved ones, we find hope through the resurrection of Jesus and His promise that there is life after death. —Anne Cetas
Thank You, Lord, for comfort and hope.
What would we do without You? Your death
and resurrection provide all we need for
this life and the next.
Because He lives, we live.
Bible in a year: Psalms 91-93; Romans 15:1-13
The “other Mary” (Matt. 28:1) in today’s account is apparently the same woman described as “Mary the wife of Clopas” who was at the cross and burial of Jesus (27:61; John 19:25). It appears she was the mother of James “the Less” and Joses (Mark 15:40), and despite sharing the same name, she was a sister of Mary, Jesus’ mother (John 19:25).
Starting off the New Week with.Then one of the scribes came, and . . . asked Him, “Which is the first commandment of all?” —Mark 12:28
Few people take time to study the US Internal Revenue Service income tax regulations—and for good reason. According to Forbes magazine, in 2013 tax codes surpassed the four million-word mark. In fact, the tax laws have become so complex that even the experts have a hard time processing all the regulations. It’s burdensome in its complexity.
The religious leaders in ancient Israel did the same thing in their relationship with God. They made it too complex with laws. The growing burden of religious regulations had increased to the point where even an expert in Moses’ law struggled to understand its core. When one such leader asked Jesus what mattered most in the Commandments, Jesus responded, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:30-31).
The law of Moses was burdensome, but faith in Christ is simple and His “burden is light” (Matt. 11:30). It’s light because God was willing to forgive us and love us. Now He enables us to love Him and our neighbor. —Bill Crowder
I love Thee because Thou hast first loved me,
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now. —Featherstone
God’s love in our heart gives us a heart for Him and others.
Bible in a year: Psalms 81-83; Romans 11:19-36
In Christ’s answer to the scribe in Mark 12:29, He quotes the “Shema” from Deuteronomy 6:4 which states, “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.” The title “shema” is from the Hebrew word for hear. One source says this statement of the oneness of God is recited twice each day by observant Jews and is the most important part of Judaism’s prayer services.
We have come to the end of the week it's FRIDAY YES! I am so EXCITED about embarking on the weekend but before we do let's take a moment to reflect on this week with this. Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. —Genesis 6:8
According to an African fable, four fingers and a thumb lived together on a hand. They were inseparable friends. One day, they noticed a gold ring lying next to them and conspired to take it. The thumb said it would be wrong to steal the ring, but the four fingers called him a self-righteous coward and refused to be his friend. That was just fine with the thumb; he wanted nothing to do with their mischief. This is why, the legend goes, the thumb still stands separate from the other fingers.
This tale reminds me that at times we may feel we’re standing alone when wrongdoing surrounds us. In Noah’s day, the earth was filled with violence; every thought in every heart was “evil continually” (Gen. 6:5,11). Yet “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (v.8). Fully devoted to God, Noah obeyed Him and built the ark. The Lord, in His grace, spared him and his family.
We too have been shown God’s grace through His Son Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. We have every reason to bring Him honor and stand strong for Him in our daily lives. He is always near, even abiding in us, so we never really stand alone. His “ears are open to [our] cry” (Ps. 34:15). —Jennifer Benson Schuldt
They show their colors when they stand
For what is true and right;
And those who venture all on God
Are pleasing in His sight. —D. DeHaan
It’s easy to stand with a crowd; it takes courage to stand alone.
Bible in a year: Psalms 74-76; Romans 9:16-33
As we are starting our New Week let's start it off with words of encouragement to help support us through this week. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells. —Romans 7:18
In a Fernando Ortega rendition of “Just As I Am,” Billy Graham’s voice can be heard faintly in the background. Dr. Graham is reminiscing about an illness during which he believed he was dying. As he mused on his past, he realized what a great sinner he was and how much he continues to need God’s daily forgiveness.
Billy Graham was putting an end to the notion that apart from God we’re okay. We can feel good about ourselves, but that confidence must come from the knowledge that we’re greatly loved children of God (John 3:16), not that we’re very good children (Rom. 7:18).
The first step in becoming a truly “good” person as a follower of Christ is to stop pretending that we’re good on our own and to ask God to make us as good as we can be. We will fail many times, but He will keep growing us and changing us. God is faithful and—in His time and in His way—He’ll do it.
In his final years, the writer of “Amazing Grace,” John Newton, suffered from dementia and lamented the loss of his memory. Yet he confided, “I do remember two things: I am a great sinner, and Jesus is a great Savior.” When it comes to faith, those are the only things anyone needs to know. —David Roper
The Lord has promised good to me,
His word my hope secures;
He will my shield and portion be
As long as life endures. —Newton
God’s grace accepted is God’s peace experienced.
Bible in a year: Psalms 66-67; Romans 7
The Christian life is one of struggle with sin and growth in holiness. On this side of heaven, we will not be totally freed from this struggle (James 3:2; 1 John 1:8–2:1). In today’s text, the apostle Paul writes of the war between good and evil that wages within him. Elsewhere Paul explains, “For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want” (Gal. 5:17 niv). Yet we can take comfort in the fact that Jesus delivers us from this “body of death” (Rom. 7:24).
We have come to the end of our week so let's take a moment and say to are selves just how Grateful we are to God for watching over us and protecting us from any hurt, harm, or danger throughout this week. I will sing of Your power; yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; for You have been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble. —Psalm 59:16
As we entered a town in Australia, we were greeted by a sign that declared: “We welcome all who are seeking refuge and asylum.” This kind of welcome seems to resonate with the Old Testament concept of the cities of refuge. In the Old Testament era, cities of refuge (Num. 35:6) were established to be a safe haven for people who had accidentally killed someone and were needing protection. God had the people establish such cities to provide that refuge.
This concept, however, was not intended to be simply a practice for ancient Israel. More than that, cities of refuge reflected the heart of God for all people. He Himself longs to be our safe haven and our city of refuge in the failures, heartaches, and losses of life. We read in Psalm 59:16-17, “I will sing of Your power; yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; for You have been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble. To You, O my Strength, I will sing praises; for God is my defense, my God of mercy.”
For the hurting heart of every generation, our “city of refuge” is not a place. Our city of refuge is a Person—the God who loves us with an everlasting love. May we find our refuge and rest in Him. —Bill Crowder
How oft in the conflict, when pressed by the foe,
I have fled to my Refuge and breathed out my woe;
How often, when trials like sea billows roll,
Have I hidden in Thee, O Thou Rock of my soul. —Cushing
Refuge can be found in the Rock of Ages.
Bible in a year: Psalms 57-59; Romans 4
According to the superscription at the beginning of Psalm 59, this psalm was written to the tune of “Do Not Destroy,” which is also the tune of Psalms 57, 58, and 75. David wrote this psalm when Saul had sent assassins to watch David’s house (1 Sam. 19:11). David’s wife Michal (Saul’s daughter) helped him escape (v.12).