If you are getting worn out in life; if you are frustrated with your lack of results; if you need some help; read my blog!

justsomegoodthoughts

If you have been living long enough at some point you realize that you do many things the same way over and over again.  Oh we don’t do it on purpose, but our tidy little pre-programmed brain stores up the information and spits it back out on demand.  So we develop habits; many, many habits that we begin to do unconsciously.  No thought required, naamsayin?  This habit forming part of our brain was designed this way on purpose so that we would not have to constantly reinvent the wheel (or some other suitable cliché.)  Once you learn to drive, after driving for a bit, you no longer have to pay attention to what your feet are doing, for example.  Remember when you first drove a stick?  You played the balancing game where you tried to make the gas pedal and the clutch parallel so you could avoid revving up…

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You Can’t Always Get What You Want? Can you?


If you have been living long enough at some point you realize that you do many things the same way over and over again.  Oh we don’t do it on purpose, but our tidy little pre-programmed brain stores up the information and spits it back out on demand.  So we develop habits; many, many habits that we begin to do unconsciously.  No thought required, naamsayin?  This habit forming part of our brain was designed this way on purpose so that we would not have to constantly reinvent the wheel (or some other suitable cliché.)  Once you learn to drive, after driving for a bit, you no longer have to pay attention to what your feet are doing, for example.  Remember when you first drove a stick?  You played the balancing game where you tried to make the gas pedal and the clutch parallel so you could avoid revving up the engine and/or stalling the engine.  But, after a short stint, your feet figured out the drill and you got where you could do it by touch.  Habit formed…  Well, habits are not only formed in terms of things we have to accomplish physically, but also are formed mentally in how we approach our lives.  We have good mental habits that are useful and we have bad mental habits that are not useful.  In fact, we have some metal habits that are downright destructive (if we only knew it).  And, just like driving the car, after awhile we are not even aware of what we are thinking.

Now, here is where it gets real tricky.  Our habits of thought lead to the things we believe or the conclusions we arrive at in our minds.  And, everything we have in this life; almost everything we experience; and everything we are able to accomplish is conditioned by what we believe.  So, indulge me for a minute.  If you learned a negative frame of mind from your well-meaning momma, or your daddy, or your first boss, or your spouse, or your church where they successfully convinced you, you are a worm, or from the information and opinion shaper box called TV, then I would surmise that your thoughts tend towards the negative.  Such as, “It’s not going to work out because I’ve got bad luck” or “I can’t seem to get ahead” or “One step forward, two steps back!” or “God is testing me because of my sin!” etc. etc.  Okay now even deeper.  If you have been thinking this way for many years now, YOU ARE NO LONGER AWARE of what you are thinking.  Say it again Sam, “YOU ARE NO LONGER AWARE OF WHAT YOU ARE THINKING!”  Those destructive negatives bore down into your heart and now you believe that garbage.  And, now that you believe it,it appears over and over again  like sign-posts in every facet of your life.    And, after it appears you are assured your original conclusion was correct and down the sewer hole your life goes!  Then, while your life is a miserable shadow of what you want it to be, you now find it necessary to convince others that their “blind” optimism is hurtful and they better figure out how the real works and in a hurry!  That my friends, is how this old world operates.  Believing equals receiving (it’s a law that God established) and when you believe for crap or at best slightly okay crap, that’s exactly what you get.

I aint the first cowboy (hey don’t judge me-the name just seemed right) that made that assertion!  Most folks seem to know that we should do our best to be positive as opposed to being negative.  (Accentuate the positives, e-lim-inate the negatives)  But, that’s where this whole habit thing comes in to play.  If these thoughts have become deeply rooted habits, how can we even be aware they are occurring?  I know, it is easy to say you should control your thinking and think about what you are thinking about (I think).  But there is an easier way.  Just decide right now that you don’t know anything!  [Don’t be afraid you will still know how to drive!]  What I mean is instead of going down the same old tired mental paths where you end up at “I don’t get what I want again!” choose another path.  The path has a name and it is called, I don’t know!  I thought I knew, in fact I was convinced that I knew, but now I have become painfully aware that I do not know.  You see, “I don’t know” is now open to new information.  “I don’t know” is now able to see a course he hadn’t considered before.  “I don’t know” is seeking a new answer to his question because the last 60,000 answers DIDN”T WORK!  If you would like a less insulting name, you can also call it humility.  Haha (Slick aren’t I?)  No hold on a second now!  I don’t mean that religious humble pie business where humility is code for you are a lowly worm.  What I mean is true humility to God where you and I are willing to give up our “I already know status” badge that we earned over the years and just consider that we may have something wrong or that we might have drawn a wrong conclusion.

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”—Matthew11:28-30

You know who made this statement?  Jesus Christ himself.  I haven’t met him personally yet (smile) but I can imagine he is a fairly confident guy  (facetious tone included at no extra charge)!   Yet he himself said, “I know this old world is wearing you out and you need some rest (peace).  Learn how I do it, man!  I am meek and lowly in heart (See it?  He didn’t assume he already knew-dadadadadaaaaaa! Horns sounding!)  Then, when you live life this way, your yoke or responsibility is easy and your burdens – light.  Folks, I didn’t write the book!

So, can you get what you want out of life?  Of course you can!  God would have it no other way.  But, we have to step down from that mighty tower of “I already know” that we have been standing on and take a fresh look.  Don’t give up your swag (haha) just recognize the source of it!  You will absolutely find, like I absolutely found, that you can finally take a breath; stop trying to figure everything out and just live… All of a sudden you will get a new idea or finally realize the cause of a problem that you absolutely swore was something else!  It’s life folks; the more than abundant life and that is one good habit to form!

 

 

 

What is wrong with me???


There’s a great epidemic that takes place in the world today!  It is not technically a disease, though it behaves like one.  It is not in the category of a plague, but tends to plague good folks on a regular basis.  It is extremely common, normal and ordinary, yet in reality should be uncommon, abnormal and highly irregular!  Although it appears to come from our interactions with society, it really comes from within and is something we do to ourselves.  Most of the time it has absolutely no value, though it may be disguised as altruistic, humble or honest.  It does not lead to better behavior; improved functioning or greater strength, in fact, it leads to just the opposite!  What is it you ask?  It is people’s incessant, unrelenting focus on “what is wrong with themselves.”

If you think really think about it, no-one has ever become a confident successful person by continually focusing on the things that are wrong with them, have they?  When you are raising children it is very easy to spot the many, many things they are doing incorrectly.  They are children, for goodness sakes!  Yet, if you only ever correct their error and invest no time in building them up; highlighting their strengths; pointing out their qualities, they grow up into insecure, nervous, creatures that are convinced they are never quite right; never quite deserving of good things and that their own opinions are never to be completely trusted!  Absent some good, old-fashioned, deliberate change of mentality, they are destined to become failures in life.  Because they do things incorrectly?  No!  Because their focus is failure and error and mistakes and you can only get those things you focus on most consistently.  For them to receive otherwise would require God to change the entire laws of the universe!   It has been said that we should offer ten positives for every negative we offer to our children.  Maybe we should offer the same to ourselves.  There’s nothing altruistic, humble or honest about dwelling on everything that is not quite right about you!  In fact, such a mindset is insulting to the heart of the great Creator that made you!  Would you consider it logical to conclude that every successful person you have ever met had somehow ceased to make mistakes just prior to achieving success?  Really?  Here’s an earth-shattering newsflash for you!  Most of us humanoids are basically the same in that we have some good, some bad, some virtue, some evil… Naturally we seek more of the good, more of the virtuous and less of the bad and way less of the evil!  Naturally!

So, how can we find more of the good and way less of the evil?  We find it by shifting our focus.  Dwelling on the darkness won’t bring forth the light (said a wonderful man once!)  In other words (because I know you like other words) no amount of wrestling in the darkness makes it get lighter, not now, not ever!  Wrestling in the darkness just leads to more and more and more darkness!  How could it do otherwise?   The simplest way to get rid of darkness in a hurry is to flick on a light!  A very small amount of light gets rid of a large amount of darkness….booms quick!  Incessant focus on what is wrong with you is WRESTLING WITH THE DARKNESS!  (Yelling intended-with a smile) Or said another way (yes another, another way) – strength leads to strength and weakness leads to weakness!  Focus on your strong areas leads to the development of more strong areas (and inspires confidence) while focusing on your weak areas leads to more weak areas (and destroys confidence).

Here are some Bible verses as healthy food for thought…

Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. ~ Romans 12 :21

Don’t spend any time fighting evil with evil (and perpetual dwelling on what is wrong with you IS evil!)  Instead overcome evil with good (just some good thoughts).  How about this one?

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by (YOU) changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. ~ Romans 12:2 NIV

Remember I told you that dwelling on what is wrong with you is common, normal and ordinary.  However, it is not correct!  Doing so just forces you to be conformed to this world with all of its misery, its negatives, its problems!  That, my friends, is not what God had in mind for you.  Life isn’t supposed to be hard, arduous, and difficult with meager victories and even more meager successes.  Life is supposed to be an exciting adventure where you believe God to overcome all of the evil and negativity that is being forced down your throat day after day, month after month, year after year!  Decide to break out of that pattern by changing the way you think!  Refused to allow that disease into your mind!  Shake free from that plague that has been plaguing you!  Change the way you think!

The only sound way to think is to dwell upon  what is RIGHT about you.  Focus on the things you do well.  Sure, you may need to modify and adjust your thoughts and behaviors from time to time, but that continual cataloging of what is wrong with you is just plain evil (or by its other name ~ bondage).  This is why I continue to be an advocate speaking out against religion (not a relationship with God – religion!)  The focus of religion will always be what man is doing and not doing and then trying to control man to do what __________ (insert religious group here) says to do.  Christianity is the polar opposite.  Another great man recently said, “I believe the opposite of love is legalism, not hatred!”  Legalism is code for all the behaviors one must engage in to gain God’s favor and approval.  The truth is that God has already made us lovely and acceptable in Christ Jesus and our job is to simply change our minds about who we are!   Dwell on the good things, the things God has done for you and for Lord’s sake get your mind off yourself and what is wrong with you!

Do you want to be a great person!  Do you want to taste success and victory (or even better live, breathe and sleep in success and victory)?  Do you want to be happy, confident, at ease, lovable and dynamic?  Do you want to break out of the negative habit patterns of evil and get into habit patterns of that good and acceptable and perfect will of God?  Then change your mind and feed it with good, wholesome, healthy food.  Feed it by focusing on all that makes you the wonderful person you are and leave the fault-finding to the critical majority.

So, what’s wrong with you?  Nothing at all, my friends, nothing at all…