Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Power of Self Reflection

I am usually the type of guy that is full steam ahead.  I am really big with living in the moment and not being too concerned with what has happened in the past and not being too interested in planning out the details of my future. As of late I have been finding joy in reflecting on past events and past scenarios and discovering what impact they have had on me.  The Lord wouldn’t give us the ability of memory if he didn’t intend for us to use it. How else can we learn if we don’t deconstruct the past and see what worked and what didn’t?

What do I self-reflect on?
  1.   Evernote - I use Evernote as a storage device for capturing quotes, recording sermons and reflecting on my day. By review notes I have created in the past I am able to reflect on my thought process on a specific day and also follow up on action items I swore to do.
  2. Gym Log Journal   I love looking at older gym logs and being amazed at how much stronger I have gotten.
  3. Wikipedia - Almost every chance I get I review the “this day in history” section on Wikipedia. It’s amazing how countries and nations have changed in such a short period of time. (The civil rights movement was like yesterday)

 The only way to grow is through making mistakes and the only way not to make the same mistake again is to reflect on what happened and change your approach.

“You’ll never know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been. 

Do you have a self-reflection time? Thoughts? Comments?

Follow @DrivenDre  

Thursday, May 2, 2013



Materialism is man’s defiant attempt to overshadow destiny with the panoply of cities, the hurling activity of his body, the absorption of his five senses through ceaseless compulsions-with toys and furnishings, games, stones jewelry, and fine processions-with listening and looking and smelling and touching and tasting- with all and everything that servers to stave off introspection for a minute, an hour, a lifetime.

Phillip Wylie, Night unto Night (Preface)

There is a thin line between enjoying the spoils of life in which God has blessed us with and being over materialistic. I grew up neither wealthy nor poor but I have always have had a grasp of the difference between needs and wants. I have developed is the only unspoiled only child in America (I only had a Nintendo growing up, so I missed out on Nintendo 64, Sega Genesis, PlayStation 1 & 2 and Sony Dreamcast…. sorry for the nerdy rant). My parents have instilled in me a sense of being satisfied with whatever you have and I grew up a happy kid.

I am a bit worried for the youth of today always being stimulated with something (iPads, PSP, Cell Phone, etc.). It’s hard not to become materialist when you always have. Once the habit of always having is fully developed in a child’s consciousness there will be no limits for the wants of the child in the future. The youth of today may not even know the difference between a want and need as I learned growing up.

If I were to be blessed to have a family my plan to combat this trend of materialism would be.
1.     Technology Free Day – One day a week without any technology, that means no TV no playing on cell phones or tablets. This will also have to apply to the adults in the house for we are the best example for children.
2.     Charity – You don’t see how truly blessed you are until you dwell with people less fortunate than you. I am not talking about give some change to the homeless man at the train station either. I’m talking about going down to soup kitchen, handing out food to the homeless.
3.     More Play Time - There have been countless days where I have passed a park on a beautiful Saturday afternoon and its completely empty.  This would be unheard of in my teenage years. I remember some Saturdays traveling from park to park to find a court that’s been over crowded.    

Maybe I am just being old school with my thoughts and nothing is wrong with the way kids are coming up theses days.

Am I overthinking? Would you raise your children differently? Thoughts? Comment?

Follow @ DrivenDre

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

NBA Predictions: NBA 1st, 2nd and 3rd Team

NBA First Team
1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team
G CP3 Tony Parker  James Harden 
G Kobe Bryant Russel Westbrook Dwayne Wade
F Lebron James Carmelo Anthony  Blake Griffin 
F Kevin Durrant Chris Bosh LaMarcus Aldridge
F/C Tim Duncan Marc Gasol Dwight Howard


  • 1st team was easy to compile only difficult decision was choosing Duncan over Gasol. I gave Duncan the edge for being more consistent this year even though Gasol has played alot more minutes this year then Duncan. Tim Duncan is the key to the Spurs standing on the top of the western conference as is very efficient for the limited minutes he plays.  
  • No need to hate on Howard being on the third team. As usually the NBA is weak with quality centers and Dwight isn't having his greatest year but he is having a solid year compared to his peers.
  • Most difficult team to compile was the third 3rd so many great players that I had to leave out such as Z. Randolph, P. Gasol, JR Smith (sorry i'm a Knick Fan), D. Williams, S. Curry, D. Lee or P. George. 
  • The toughest call I had to make would be between LaMarcus Aldrige and Brook Lopez. Brook Lopez had a wonderful season and he is the last of the dying breed of low post scoring centers.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Learning from Weight Lifting to become a better Christian!!! 

Momentum - One thing that I have learned from weight lifting is that you have to be consistent and build upon the monument from previous days, weeks and years. I have had a gym membership since about 2007. Between 2007 and today in 2013. I have taken numerous hiatuses from the gym. Without these hiatuses I know that I would've been faster, leaner and stronger today.  The momentum i'm starting to gain now is the same momentum I apply to my Christian life. I attend church events and meetings even when I don't want because I know I need to maintain momentum and grow stronger in my faith.

Pain is okay - During weight lifting or any exercise your body is tearing down muscle fiber which it will repair and refortify to make the muscle stronger for  future use (or your next weight lifting session). Any fiber tears that occur in your body will cause some type of pain. The same principle applies in a Christian walk. In these verses we hear and are forewarned about the hardships and the pain we will have to go through as Christians.

  • James 1:2-4 
  • John 15:18-20  
  • 1 Peter 4:13 
  • Romans 15:4
But as in weight lifting I have learned the pain is only temporary and there is a greater reward for me past this season of pain.

I am stronger today than I am yesterday -  Every time I go to the gym I get better. I may not be able to throw five extra pounds on the bar but my reps become cleaner or my stamina throughout the whole session gets better. The same growth occurs with my walk with the Lord. I get stronger and more confident in God's word everyday and just as in weight lifting there is no point of maximum strength or maximum Christian ism.

The stronger I get the more I am responsible to help - I am far from and Olympic lifter or a strong man competitor but I can hold my own in the weight room. Usually once or twice a week I get asked for advice on a certain lift or get asked to assist someone while they lift a weight. In my earlier days in the gym these interactions never occurred. As I grow stronger in the Lord I notice that I am asked to speak more in public or present a lesson of some sort. I know the more learn and grow in the faith the more is required from me.

We all know about the Great Commission which Jesus demand of from the disciples in Matthew 28:16-20. A key point some people may neglect is the timing of the Commission. The commission was not given to the disciples earlier in Jesus ministry. The Commission was given after Christ dead and resurrected. The disciples at this point have gone through numerous highs and lows on their walk of faith and now were strong enough to receive the Commission and execute on it.

The stronger we get the more we need to help.

Thoughts? Comments?  

Follow @DrivenDre

Monday, March 25, 2013

First things 1st

I always find it funny when people say things such as I don't time to do "X" or I wanted to do "Y" but I ran out of time. I find those statement to be an excuse or a lie we tell ourselves. On a given day we have about 16 conscious hours to get things done give or take a few hours depending on how much sleep you require. In those 16 hours I find it hard to believe that you can't squeeze in activities you truly want to do.

For quick hitting activities such as praying, reading and meditating it only takes a few minutes to get them done and you feel better for the whole day. For the task that take more physical or mental energy such as exercising, writing or studying all that is required is a bit of preplanning and the development of a consistent habit. None the less whether the task is quick hitting of requires more energy it best to do it when we first wake up. When we first wake up our body and mind are recharged, our thought are clear, our willpower tank is full.

When we first start out doing our first things 1st activities in the morning we need not go all out by say thing like:

"I am going to write 2000 words this morning"
"I am going to meditate for one hour this morning"
" I am going to do an hour and a half weight training session at 5am tomorrow"

Setting your first thing 1st goals so high and lofty is a perfect setup for a future disappointment. When we fail at something we become disappointed in ourselves we quit. So why walk down this path when we know where it potentially leads.

Instead setup shorter and smaller goals such as

"I'm going to write for 15 minutes this morning"
"I am going to meditate for 5 minutes today"
"I am going to do an at home exercise video this morning"

Overtime you will start to enjoy your morning time first things 1st routines and add eventually you add more complexity to them.

My morning routine is usually devotion time. Not every morning run smoothly but I have tools to help me stay on track. Trust me my eyes are so heavy some morning that reading the Bible is a very difficult task but that's why I have audio sermons.

So if you want to make sure you get something done do it FIRST before you find an excuse to not do it. It doesn't have to be the whole activity you may only need five minutes worth.

What's your first thing 1st activities? Where are you struggling?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Why I don't need to make 100k a year?

At the age of 21 my goal was to be at least making 100K a year by the age of 30. Being a year away from thirty I am remotely close to this goal but I have also learned that it doesn't matter.

I guess being at the ripe age of 21 my mind was on all the things that a young man that age thinks about  namely money, women and having fun. At the age I am at now I realized that my priorities were all mixed up.

I have learned that my real priorities are now

  1. continuing to grow in all aspects of my life mental, physical and spiritually. Jan Alridge a minster I heard over the weekend reminded me of an old saying  "if you're not moving forward you are moving backwards "
  2. treasure genuine connection you have with people.  In my life I have had many friends come and go. I am often accused of being guarded and not open but that is far from the case. I choose who I call a friend very carefully. I take the saying "you are the average of your five closes friends literally".What is the point of keeping friends around that pushing you to become better. 
  3. be more selfless. being an only child i have a lot of residual spoiled child tenancies  Over the years I have learned that our life goal and mission are to give. Give of your time, energy and talents to the world. 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Are we silent symbol of Jesus?

I was reading a Jim Pena article on and he was discussing about what does your outward appearance saw about your walk with God. I then thought to myself do people know that I'm Christian by the way I carry myself or do they think something else. For the most part I am not concerned how people view me but I do realize that I represent two legacies

  1. I am a Marshall ;and
  2. I AM a Christian (Christ-like).
I find it easier to live up to my family name since there isn't a particular exception I need to live up too. As a Christian however the standard is much higher. Christ has set the bar high for all of us and even though we will never be as holy as Christ we must press and strive for that mark. The World may think that Christians should walk on water and perform miracles but being a pursue of Christ is more than that.

Of course I can get a physical symbol to show my faith such as a cross pendant or tattoo of the face of Jesus but that's not what I'm looking for. I'm looking for something more!!! I want that when you walk into a room  room people feel my presence of God around me. I don't want this outward apperance for selfish reasons I want it because that is my purpose and that is my call. This life in the human body is only a test trail for the what God has in store for us and my goal is too have as many people as possible join me for the real thing after life. 

In order to achive this silent symbol of faith 

  1. Spend more time in the word -  by spending more time in the word I will be saturated with God's wisdom.
  2. Be aware of my body language - I am the type of person whose face expressions and body language gives away exact how I'm feeling. I need to be aware of the signals that I am unaware that I am projection. 
  3. Spend the with the Lord -have you ever noticed that people who spend alot of time together pick up each others tendencies.  Some people even start to look alike, how often do you see pet owners look like their pet. If I want to be a reflection the Lord them I have tut spend time with him.
Thoughts? Comments?

Follow me @DrivenDre