Have Things Gotten Bitter Between You? (Relationships with Sugar Added)


Relationships are often complicated because people are complicated. When a longterm relationship begins to dissolve, it’s not usually due to a big mistakes made or some epic past failure, but rather in response to a multitude of minor slights adding, multiplying and blending into one large, bitter whole! Relationships fail due to words not said, important things not remembered, genuine care and concern not demonstrated. It breaks up and splinters first in the mind, then in the heart from too many missed opportunities to communicate love. And despite all of its associated complexity, can be repaired quickly by adding a little sugar.

The problem with us humans is that we tend to hold on to the negatives and easily forget the positives. How many people still rehearse the cruel words spoken to them by their partner during a big fight from five years ago? How easy it is to compile a list of a spouse’s failings, then read those failings into future scenarios that soon become present? How many of you have simply made up your mind about who your significant other is and as such offer zero possibilities for a new way in a new day? Your boyfriend, your girlfriend has little chance to demonstrate proper behavior while being chained by you to the mistakes of their past.

Understanding relationships is understanding how each of us grow and evolve. People can and do change even after they may have shown you who they are. The point being that who they are isn’t always defined by who they were. Priorities change. Desires change. Happiness and contentment are based on varying stages of life. Change is good unless it is met with a refusal to see the person through a different lens. Maybe your ex-husband is so happy with his new wife because he finally was afforded the opportunity to be someone else. Maybe you needed to get away from your ex-husband so you could be someone else. Wherever you are or whatever you may be facing, you must have some capability to modify your thinking; to get out of your rut; to reframe your expectations.

I think if you are honest, you have to recognize that relationships require commitment on both parts. I’m not referring to your decision to commit yourself to the relationship, but rather your decision to commit yourself to stop drawing negative conclusions. You have to change your own mind, your own beliefs, your own long-held preconceived notions. You have to cease from being mired in perpetual negative expectations. No matter your justifications, your righteous rights, your standing up for yourself and your other stories you’ve made up to justify your shitty approach, you have to flip the script. You have to realign your “self-defense” mentality to one of alignment and loving mutual respect. You cannot make someone else be something else, but you can damn sure make yourself be something or someone else.

In order for a relationship to thrive there has to be some element of love involved and love is best characterized by sweetness. To think that sweetness is somehow weak or pitiful or acknowledging inferiority is to be deluded in regard to the essence of human relationships. Now I recognize that people have hurt you and maybe done and said all manner of terrible things to you, but that doesn’t negate your ability to be kind; to be tender; to be sweet. The alternative is simply to keep living and reliving the same nightmare over and over and over again. Your escape isn’t in finding the perfect guy or the ideal woman, but rather in relocating your heart; the one you had before the damage occurred. The real you wants to give love and receive love no matter how far down you got knocked. It seems risky but in reality there is no risk because love never fails!

Real love; true love; abiding love requires a new beginning, a fresh start. Just as you forgive yourself for your own absurdities and foolishness, you have to be willing to offer your love interest the same privileges. You have to learn to make your evaluations and draw your conclusions based on today in the moment called now. Today is always a new day and carries with it unlimited new beginnings. Sure stuff is going to happen that drags you back to yesterday, but in like fashion you pull your own self back to today. You treat your partner like someone you love in spite of yourself. Just as a soft answer turns away wrath, a soft approach can remedy a whole world of failings. If your love is always based on proper behaviors and the right words you are setting yourself up for a misery that cannot be overcome.

Decide right now to be that warm, loving person you know you really are already. Stop with your defensive approach, your self preservation, ever hedging just in case.  End your failure planning and plan to succeed. In spite of what is going on and what you are experiencing, be sweet; so lovingly, genuinely sweet. In doing so you will find that sweetness and kindness are irresistible and almost impossible to slight. You will find yourself on the high road, unshaken and unaltered in your thinking. You will find yourself living love and giving love from which there is never any need to retreat. You will be loving people how God loves you, unconditionally and without a change of heart.

No matter how bitter or jaundiced you may have become towards him or her, know that there is something you can do. Don’t go to the counselor with an expectation of confirmation for the things you have seen for years, but instead with an open heart regarding what you can do with you to effect a change. Maybe, just maybe it’s you! And if it’s not you, you still have the solemn responsibility to guard and nurture your own heart which is never accomplished in anger, fighting and bitterness of soul! Oh my friends choose sweetness! Add some sugar and see how much better it all tastes!

Just some good thoughts…

 

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How to Escape from Yourself…


Life has many ironies which God seems to have thrown in for good measure, as if to say things aren’t always what they look like. Ironically, sometimes the thing you need most to do in order to alleviate your present dilemma appears to be the exact opposite of what “you” think you should do. Today the world seems consumed with this notion of self and a myriad of things you need to do to best care for yourself. But, what if many of those suggestions are based in error? What if your solution for your problem isn’t at all what you thought it was? What if your best efforts to feel better ( and let’s face it, a lot of what we do or try to figure out is in an effort to feel better) are unsuccessful because the starting premise is wrong? Error only works when you are unable to see it for what it is…

We all want to be happy. We all want to feel good. We all are aware that life is filled with challenges and we all understand that every day isn’t necessarily going to be a blissful experience because of those challenges. But, we also all know what life is like when we feel good and for that we are forever on a quest to feel good. When our mind feels out of sorts; when we feel agitated or troubled; when our experience feels boring or lacking fulfillment, we know that also. We accurately perceive when our energy is down; when our excitement is diminished; when our enthusiasm is missing and in our desperation we turn inwards. Our mission to feel good drives us further and further into ourselves, searching ardently for that thief, that hindrance, that devious bastard keeping us from our pure happiness. “Maybe it’s because of how I have been acting lately. Maybe it’s my diet. Maybe I’m doing something wrong. Maybe it’s my wife or my husband or my job or my family or my…….” Whatever we think it might be and however it affects us, the end result is the same in that our focus and attention is driven and pressed and steered deeper and deeper into ourselves…

It has been said that the deeper you look at the things God has created, the more perfect they become (think snowflakes, leaves, granules of salt, to name a few). Conversely, the more deeply you inspect things that man has made, the more their errors and imperfections become evident. Similarly, the more you focus (or more accurately are driven to focus) on yourself, the more miserable you will become. Oh sure, you think looking inward will lead you to some divine enlightenment you have heretofore been missing. You believe buried somewhere in your subconscious mind is a temple of knowledge awaiting your arrival. But, sadly, you are wrong. All you will find, if you must persist, is more and more unhappiness and the distinct absence of what you have been searching for so diligently!

Your problem isn’t how you feel, though Lord knows it seems like it. Your problem is one of focus or where you are focusing your attention. If I may say it bluntly, you are inspecting your own imperfection and expecting perfection. You are considering your own weakness in an effort to find strength. You are searching for human solutions to spiritual problems and by spiritual problems I mean the real source of your difficulties. As odd as it may seem to you, your challenges are being engendered by something outside of yourself. And that same damnable force behind your troubles is the same one pushing you inward, deeper and deeper inward for a solution that doesn’t exist within yourself. Your efforts are futile, no matter how well intended they may be. The answer isn’t to look within, but rather to look without.

When you finally figure this out, you will begin to see that you were designed to seek outside of yourself for help. Your focus is supposed to be on God from which all good feelings like joy and peace and love, freely flow. In essence you just give all of your human bullshit to God and leave it with Him. You have to get outside of yourself. You have to escape from yourself and all of your associated baggage. You must stop putting yourself and how you feel at any given moment ahead of everything else in life. It’s not self-care, it’s self-sabotage! It’s a deception of gargantuan proportions. The world’s remedies consisting of focusing on yourself and your happiness and your feelings and your problems don’t lead you out of darkness but instead to more and more darkness. Happiness comes back with a quickness as you move the focus away from yourself! True happiness comes when you walk in the light!

If you’ve been around long enough you know that when you stop moving forward in life and start slowing down and looking around you or within you, you are going to find more and more of that which troubles you. You will discern more and more darkness and more and more reasons to be distressed. Stop doing that! Get up mentally and move ahead. Lay your troubles on God and thank Him for helping you discover what has gone south on you. Ask Him to make it clear again and to restore your soul to that grand place you like to dwell in. It is that simple…

When you find yourself unhappy, disturbed, perplexed or confused, don’t look within, look without. Don’t spend another millisecond muddling through the heaviness. Unload it all as you were intended to do and change your subject of focus. Your answers are there, your happiness is there, your enthusiasm and vitality for living are there, waiting for you to find them again. Don’t look within, look without! Your happiness depends upon you escaping from yourself!

Just some good thoughts…

 

Do What Feels Good…


Before you get started down the wrong path, this isn’t some appeal to your hedonistic tendencies, wish as you may. Nor is this some modern day philosophy that promises you pleasure in spite of future pain. Instead this about honoring your feelings for their true purpose, to lead you to something better. This about de-numbing yourself from the grips of societal pressures and expectations. It’s about recognizing when you feel good and wholeheartedly pursuing it rather than falling back to the circumstances that cause you to feel bad. If you have become weary of the see-saw; of the ups then the downs; of the heights then the valleys , this post is for you!

Carefully constructed and intertwined with your mind are your feelings. God has designed for certain necessities to feel good to encourage their continuance and certain behaviors to cause pain demanding their termination. And as simple as it may seem, the world works feverishly to get you embroiled in certain patterns guaranteed to defeat you. Then, in the final analysis, there you sit like the alcoholic or drug abuser, buried and consumed by the very things that promised you liberty. You had many chances to escape, but in your callousness, brought about by your error, you failed to be sensitive to your feelings any longer.

Life for humankind has one basic essence and that foundational essence is control. Learning to control yourself is a class you cannot skip. Oh you can spend a lot of time floundering around in the misty flats, but life will instruct you otherwise if you are still willing to hear. Everything you fail to control will eventually control you. Every “one too many” carries with it a penalty from which it is hard to escape. That which you refuse to control causes you to feel bad just as everything you can control and do control causes you to feel good. A successful life isn’t found in large batches, but is found in the multitude of little handfuls. It’s not the critical decisions requiring your utmost concentration and effort that make or break you, but is instead the seemingly minor decisions that confront you every day!

If you play it correctly, you soon learn there is a rhythm and a flow to life. The secret isn’t to fight and argue in your rebellion, but to acquiesce and adapt. It all falls subservient to one important question. What is it that you need to do next? What activity or behavior does the present situation demand? What thing should you do that will make you feel good about yourself? Do you need to clean the place up? Is there some nagging, aggravating, broken thing you know you need to fix? Is there some unresolved situation or conversation you know you need to have that you have been avoiding? Have you let yourself go in terms of your health or your finances or your creativity or your happiness? Have you settled in to a life of mediocrity? Whatever it is, there it sits like a gigantic boulder impending your path and there you sit choosing to avoid it. The answer to the question of what you need to do next is painfully obvious to you and you my friend, already know what it is!

The search to feel good is the supreme factor in finally becoming happy. Happiness doesn’t come or for that matter last until you begin to make the right choices. When you stumble upon a behavior or activity that leaves you feeling good about yourself, that is an action to pursue. If the sight of yourself in the mirror causes you to flinch, there is something you can do about it. Like my barber said recently, “I control what I eat so I can like myself naked!” (smile) You can substitute that phrase with anything that helps you like yourself! Self-esteem is only found when you do things that lead to self respect. Self-loathing or self-hate come about only by a multiplicity of skipped or prolonged good choices. Take control of anything you can control and see for yourself how wonderful it feels.

Moderation in your life sees to it that you don’t get too high and that you don’t go too low, but there’s lots of space in-between. There is a whole world of joy in-between. Sure you will have times when you chased too much of a good thing. But not to worry, as that will always be very evident to you. Consequently, you will have periods of life where you foolishly sought after the wrong things, and they too will not fail to reveal themselves to you. The same moderation you employ in your behaviors is also required in the way that you think about yourself. Give yourself a break and embrace your new days. It is just as morally wrong for you to beat yourself for some past bad behavior as it was to perform the wrong behavior in the first place. Moderation is the key!

Don’t complicate things unnecessarily! As my Peloton inspiration often says, “It’s not that deep!” Your requirement isn’t to live your whole life in the next moment, but to live your “right now” life in the next moment. Do what in your heart you know you need to do now, next. Stop avoiding your life or waiting for some magical circumstance to make it all nice again like when you were a kid. That ship has already sailed. But like that kid you so dearly miss did, live your life in the moment called now! Do the next thing whatever it is.

I often marvel that the highroad with God isn’t found in complexity and complication, but is found in simplicity; in the many todays that eventually make up our best tomorrows. Grab your life by the balls and control it. Get back on top of whatever you are no longer on top of… You won’t master it by tomorrow, but you will be on the right track, feeling good and doing good. My brothers and sisters, do what feels good!

Just some good thoughts…

The Love Factor…


There is one thing the whole world needs and there is one thing the whole world seeks and that is love. Love is the unifying power of the universe. Love is the answer to every heartfelt question. Love is an unstoppable force. Love is the reason and motive for every human life. Love never fails and God is love. When your life feels off-track or unfulfilled or empty the cause is always a lack of that love. In order to live a real life you need much, much love. You need to employ the love factor!

Life absent love is not a real life. Days spent earning and churning to succeed and get ahead; to outwork and outproduce; to lead the pack; to be the top dog, when lacking love as the motive, end only in a material gratification amidst an empty soul. Rewards gained through arduous effort and toil without love behind them leave a man desolate and unfulfilled. The ambitious drive for success is not wrong, but becomes so in the heart and life of the man without love as the only alternative to love is fear. Fear motivation, though powerful, cannot help but produce more of the same.

People today exist in a world that repudiates love. Love is somehow viewed as soft or weak. Love is considered too vulnerable and is reserved only for the closest of family and friends. Love freely given seems to come with a risk, the risk of possible rejection, ridicule or shame. In order to properly insulate your tender heart you think it plausible to armor your heart with hardness, a tough exterior impenetrable to outside jabs and assaults. You wrongly conclude that a hardened heart cannot be reached and in so doing close yourself off to life’s greatest reality. In your hardness and calloused response you fail to recognize the true sensitivity of life and in no longer feeling, miss everything. On your deathbed all that will matter to you is the people that you love and the people that love you. Your life begins and ends in love.

God in His basic essence is love and accordingly, if you lack love, is the sole thing missing from your life. You don’t need more relationships, you need ONE relationship from which ALL relationships take shape and blossom! Your relationship with Him is not one of faultfinding and bondage under the hand of the moral police, but instead one of unfathomable love, unlimited forgiveness and unending, unearned, divine favor allowing you to at last prosper and thrive! God is the life you once dared to imagine unfolding in infinite variety and blessedness. God is love without conditions. God is tender and kind and able to warm your soul, demonstrating in your life a complete and unquenchable restoration. God loves you first so you can love Him next, ending in your love being extended to the world.

Life on Earth has not gone south because of poor presidents or liberal agendas or the lack of a more simple time. The world has gone astray because of the victory of fear over love. The more you allow the world to make you afraid and conclude there is no solution, the more you help perpetuate the same. You remain powerless to shape the course of the world, but your true power resides in your decision to love. Every deliverance from bondage, every healing, every setting a captive free was done so in love.  In fact, every good thing you ever did, every lasting impact, every difference you made, only did so because of your love. Love never fails and is the antithesis and antidote to fear. Love properly exercised and freely given brightens the hearts of men and adds light to a world engulfed in darkness.

The love factor is an unstoppable force. But, to have a true imprint in the hearts of men, must be initiated and given by you. Love the unloveable. Offer people kindness. Be that sweet soul for people. Decide to care about them and be the one among a thousand that helped them. Don’t give them all your money, give them all your heart! Don’t concern yourself with what the world says. Concern yourself with what God says and in so doing set people free. People don’t need unlimited riches, they need the right words at the right time from a heart of love; from your heart of love. Love has no complexity in it, no wrong motive, no pretense. Love not to be known as a lover, but because you already are…

Living love, working your love factor, you will find that life begins to take on a glow that encourages and refreshes your heart. Things begin to settle down on the inside. Peace will reign where anxiety once ruled. Your concerns will be that of others and you will finally be able to let go of almighty self. And God working in you as the ultimate source of love, will ensure that everything you need will be there before you can even ask for it. Odd as it seems, that is the true design, the Master’s ultimate plan!

Are you unhappy, unfulfilled and empty? Does it all seem so futile and pointless? If so, it does so because your heart has been hardened and the softening is found in love. Get yourself directly to the source. Talk to God and tell Him how you feel. Open your heart to Him. Believe that He is and see if He will not reward and bless your decision. Everything you ever wanted to experience in life is found in love; in God who is love! Don’t be afraid anymore. Use the love factor! Choose love!

I love you.

Just some good thoughts…

 

Are You For or Against Yourself? (That is the question…)


Okay so you have one life, one shot, one go round, one opportunity to live your life. Your life here on earth has an expiration date and each day that passes brings you that much closer to your end date. Once you reach the final paragraph of your story only one question remains. Were you for or against yourself? Did you vote for you or did you vote with the public opinion? Did you consistently think the best of yourself despite your foibles and absurdities or did you regularly draw the wrong conclusions and come up short because of those conclusions? Who you think you are in the depths of your heart is who you are whether you choose correctly or not. Your limitations, your failures, your struggles are largely self imposed, not because of fate or God or life, but because you failed to recognize a vast array of assumptions you have been making about yourself. Are you for or against yourself?

It is incredulous to me, amidst the same weaknesses and foolishness I likewise entertain, how easy it is to think poorly of yourself. Something your dad told you a hundred years ago frightfully maintains the power to live on in your thoughts long after your father has departed. Some early failure or difficulty somehow casts a spell on your future existence forever etching in your mind what you can and cannot do. Once you were labeled insecure or shy or weak or dumb or average, persists despite a thousand pieces of evidence to the contrary! In that I submit to you that those things continue only because you allow them to continue. You have failed to challenge the false beliefs and as such drawn disastrous conclusions about who you are and worse what you can accomplish with your life.

Us humans are thinking machines, running a myriad of things through our heads every day. Much of what goes on in our minds is pure nonsense heavily influenced by the things we see and experience around us. And like sheep that have gone astray, we sort of fall in line with the story. We blindly accept our thoughts as if they contain some type of magical truth serum from which we cannot escape. It’s no wonder we think this way as we have long heard erroneous idioms preaching the heart knows all, implying truth preexists in our hearts. That could not be further from the truth! Your heart knows only what you have been feeding it and if you’ve been feeding it lies about yourself, that becomes your truth. And though it be miles from the truth, it still becomes your truth…

Your defeat and mine comes from a failure to recognize the hundred-fold falsehoods assaulting our minds from sun up to sun down. Our human conclusions are completely devoid of logic. Stealing some item once or twice does not make you a thief any more so than making a good play on the sports field makes you a premier athlete. If you could add up the time encompassing your life, you would see that your mistakes; your lapses in judgment make up a fraction of your total life. Yet, we can spend a lifetime assigning ourself future misery for errors that occurred in milliseconds by comparison. And, we are quick to breeze past our successes though they took many years to produce. Any scientist would quickly point out the illogic of those conclusions. This alone should reveal to you that there is something behind our thoughts, ever working to bring us down to some fate or shame.

Your responsibility (and mine) is to recognize and confront those wrong beliefs. In other words, when you hear the tape playing that says you will never overcome that weakness or will never have any money because all your relatives are poor, or you will never amount to much or you cannot maintain a good relationship, or what the hell ever else, challenge those erroneous assumptions! It doesn’t matter if you have been failing in that area for 50 years, it’s your job to rewrite the tape! It’s not who you are for God’s sake, it’s what you have been believing and you can always change what you believe, that is unless you’ve assigned yourself some harsh fate and refuse to stop voting against yourself!

In the final analysis, you have only one life with which to succeed or fail. You have only one heart, one mind, one shot at this thing! Make the decision; one of the best potential decisions of your life, to cease from being your own worst enemy! Stop telling yourself and rehearsing all that stupid, awful shit! Stop dredging up the “long-dead” past! Stop allowing the terrible things people have said about you, even the people you love and respect, to define you or forever entomb you in negative self-judgment. Some sad people have been carrying around some dreadful thing someone said about them 25 years ago. Back then you may have been a complete jackass. You may have been selfish and self-centered and even caused a tremendous amount of pain, but you don’t have to be that person today! You are not defined by your past, you are defined by what you think about today…

I’m certainly not casting judgment on you or implying I’ve got it all figured out. Like you, I can get caught up in mountains of self-doubt and insecurity, but I thank God for the days when I can see it all so clearly. I thank God for patiently teaching me and shining the light so brightly that I can finally recognize what I’ve been saying to myself and to stop it in that very moment. That same God will do likewise for you if you want it and trust me, you want it!

It’s not selfish or self-centered to vote for yourself! It is simply acknowledging that God gave you the same privilege to control your thinking as He gave to everyone else. Think and say things to yourself that you would say to someone you deeply love because after all, before you can love others you have to love yourself! Love yourself… Vote for yourself!

I love you…

Just some good thoughts…

Who is Driving Your Bus? (Revisited)


There are only two basic motivators in life, love and fear. The life you are experiencing at this very moment in time is built upon the driving force behind your life. Love motivation is incapable of failing. Fear motivation, though appearing to feel safe and responsible, leads only to failure. If things aren’t going well for you it’s time to answer the question, “Who is driving your bus?”

Fear has become so prevalent, so accepted by society that most people think it is normal. Or worse, many people find themselves completely oblivious to the reality that fear is lying hidden behind most of the decisions they make. The world is indeed a scary place. There are so many things that can go wrong, some with catastrophic results. Recognizing, on their own, their apparent inability to control their own lives, people resort to fear of those negative outcomes and then take actions to try and alleviate those fears. Those actions encompass a whole, delusional world of behaviors all offered in response to something that was a lie to begin with. Fear, on its own, is not real. However, once a fear is believed and strengthened by actions associated with that fear, it takes on a life of itself. Most of the failures and difficulties that assault mankind, could have been remedied by a refusal to fear. Fear is indeed man’s greatest enemy.

All that a man receives into his life comes as a result of what he believes in the core of his being. That doesn’t mean that a man is specifically expecting certain negative outcomes, but rather that his belief that those outcomes could happen to him, open the door to all kinds of disasters. Those people you see living well do so by the things they believe for themselves. It isn’t that they are more highly favored than you per se,’ but rather that they maintain an expectation for the good in life and act accordingly. Thinking you were predestined to some sad life of failure and disappointment, isn’t a fate assigned to you by God, but instead some serious errors in thinking that led eventually to a belief. And once negatively believed (fear), the cycle plays itself out in infinite reality. The solution is to stop sending that negative information to your mind. Change your mind. You aren’t being mature, realistic or responsible, you are being afraid!

Free-will to believe is one of the greatest gifts God could have ever given to man. It is God’s solution. It is God’s answer. It is your God-given ability to take back control of your life. It is the most basic tenet of life; believe and fear not. When you disobey and choose fear, either by ignorance or wrong teaching, you receive the consequences of your choice. You receive negative results. You are misusing what God gave you. You are not properly stewarding your mind. For, out of your heart come the issues of your life! You cannot co-exist with fear. It doesn’t matter if anyone knows or doesn’t know you are afraid of things. You can put on the greatest persona ever seen, but in the end, you know when you are afraid and if persisted in it will produce a bad outcome in your life.

Fear can only be overcome by love. Actions based on love never fail to yield positive results. God is love. Learning to believe God’s promises allows God to perform those promises in your life. The dread of something horrible happening to your child cannot be salved by your million-fold efforts to protect him or her. Life is just too big for you to accomplish your mission. In fact, you likely do your children a huge disservice by teaching them to be afraid as well. Instead of worrying yourself into anxiety, you learn to trust God and believe what He says about protecting your family. Then, you act on that belief. You give them to God and leave them in His hands. In so doing and so acting, you have chosen love over fear and reap the blessed result of safe, happy children. You may apply this principle to everything that ever shook you up or took away your sleep.

You may not believe it yet, but God never intended for you to “do life” on your own! You have likely already proven this to yourself. How much failure and disappointment can one person endure? How long can you go on living without any real purpose in life? When is the last time you felt truly peaceful without a care in the world? Your life, if it lacks contentment and joy, is so because you are making decisions based on fear. You, as the playwright, are continuing to write a story wherein you always end up the loser! Then you blame life or worse God for an existence you are producing. But, no matter what has happened to you; no matter where you are today; no matter how far down the rungs of life you have fallen, there is always a solution. The solution is love, God’s love and all that accompanies that love!

Now hear what I’m saying! If you feel like your boss doesn’t like you and that makes you afraid, instead of spending your days fawning and sucking up (fear), believe for a new boss or a new job! If you are worried about diseases, stop reading up on them, stop dwelling on them, stop accepting their possibility in your life (fear). Instead believe God’s promises for your health and don’t give them another thought. (You would be surprised how many fears go away simply by refusing to think about them). If you are scared of not having your needs met (fear), stop telling everyone how poor you are and how you can never get ahead. Instead, confess those positive promises of prosperity in your life and act accordingly.

You see, at the end of the day, you only have one bus to drive and you are the driver! Take back the wheel of the bus! When you live in fear, you give control of your bus over to someone or something else. Instead of negotiating and choosing behaviors based on fear, just get back in the bus and start driving again! Whose driving your bus? I hope it’s you and that you are doing it with love…

Just some good thoughts…

The World Needs More Nice…


As I was driving home from work the other day, I saw a billboard that said, “The world needs more Nice” and while it was likely an advertisement, it spoke a reality worth thinking about. What has gone wrong with people that has caused them to be so damn hateful? Is it the advent of the Internet? Is it the society in which we live or the current political climate? Or is it the natural consequence of a world mired in negativity and unmet needs? Whatever it is, the world definitely needs more “nice.”

Social media seems to have spurned an environment of unparalleled cynicism or at minimum revealed it. Someone posts a problem they’re experiencing and it’s dismissed as a cry for attention. Someone else posts about the good that is happening in their lives and it is met with harsh criticism, as if it cannot be true or else it is a gross misrepresentation. Really? The question to be answered doesn’t point back to the poster, but instead points to the hearts of the critics. What went so badly in your life or what unresolved issue do you harbor that made your heart so hard? What matter is it with you whether some person seeks attention. Why not give them the attention? If they boast of good times and happiness, shouldn’t you rather be happy for them? If their words exaggerate, God bless them for it must be better to exaggerate happiness than magnify negativity! The issue isn’t them, it is you…

The internet offers the world at your fingertips. You have the power to beat down and to lift up. Why not lift up? If you have been a person long enough, you know the trials and tribulations that accompany life. You know what it’s like to suffer heartache and loss. You know how hard it is to overcome certain issues in your life. You likely know how infrequent are your successes and in so knowing ought to rejoice when they happen for others. Your victories in life come not at the expense of other people and when you win it shouldn’t have to be because someone else has lost. If your life is so sad that the only way you rise is to cause others to fall, you need to ask yourself some serious questions! Your computer keyboard, though seemingly anonymous, is not really anonymous as the things you say point to who you really are…

The political climate in which we live is particularly arduous, but when hasn’t it been? If you look to the world for your happiness, you will be waiting for a long time. The world, or I should say the systems of the world, are not designed to make you happy. They are designed to engulf you in a perpetual misery until you finally concede there is no way to escape. But, there is a way to escape and it’s not found in the ways of the world. It’s found in kindness, in compassion, in love… It’s found in seeking to make the world a little bit softer for your brother; a little easier to navigate. It’s found in answers of peace and the promise of better days ahead. It’s found in hope for the future and in learning a superior way. It’s found in God and His Word with restoration, forgiveness, healing and love. Don’t waste your time and your life trying to repair the evil, but instead do good and be good. What your brother needs from you is a break, a chance, an opportunity for a fresh start. If you are going to type something, give him that…

It is a sad testimony that most folks are typically negative. It’s not so much their fault as they find themselves living in a negative society that feeds on what has gone wrong. People are so accustomed to what is wrong that they expect it or incredulously question when good happens to someone else. The good that you enjoy cannot be real good because of the shortage of goodness in their own lives. And instead of seeking the source of your happiness they choose rather to discount your happiness as artificial because of their conditioning concerning what is wrong, or could go wrong, or will likely turn out wrong. Two or three wrongs do not make a right no matter how many times you may have heard it. What makes something right is a change of heart. It is the honest recognition that when life sucks something is wrong and most often wrong in the heart of the sufferer. The purpose of suffering, if there is such a thing, is to encourage you to look outside yourself for the answer. It is to acknowledge that there just might be something you need to learn or understand. It is not to strengthen the walls of your heart in defiance, but instead to tear down those walls with heartfelt humility, expecting a different result.

Somewhere, somehow, we have been talked into a futility. We think that unmet needs are normal; that prayer is just an exercise for the soul; that solutions don’t really exist unless you are lucky or some other unexplainable nebulism. But, solutions do exist. Don’t make your heart harder by tearing others down, but instead seek your own solution. Find out what made your heart so hard. Find out why it feels better to tear down than to build up and make an earnest effort to build up. With all that you are and with all that you can ever be, find out how to make your heart tender again, like the one you had before the world kicked your ass. Be vulnerable. Take the risk. Offer your heart to others counting on the fact that they also have a heart and if your blessing is unrequited, bless them anyway. Love people as you would want to be loved. Forgive people understanding what a stinker you have been at times. Be a listening ear, a source of compassion, a place where judgment is suspended. That’s what people need. They have enough of the criticism, but they haven’t had enough of your love. The world needs more “nice” brothers and sisters and it all starts with you! Be nice…

Just some good thoughts…