Do You Love Yourself, Flaws and All?


The other day I was listening to a teaching from my good buddy Mark Wallace. He told a story about an experiment where people were asked to describe themselves to a criminal sketch artist. Then, those same folks were also described to the sketch artist by their friends. Amazingly, the friends’ description of the person looked much more like the person than their own description! Why, you ask? Because when people described themselves they overly focused on their perceived flaws, resulting in an image not even close to how they really looked. So the question that begs is, do you love yourself, flaws and all?

People tend to be brutal in their own estimation of themselves. They have been caught up in a culture that falsely represents who people are and as such have been talked into focusing on everything they are not instead of everything they truly are. They have forgone any recognition of all that makes them unique and wonderful in favor of an obsession with having to be something the world deems acceptable or beautiful or admirable. They magnify their “wrong behaviors” out of all proportion in comparison to their “right behaviors.”  In short, they have believed lies and accusations concerning themselves; failed to recognize them as such, and landed at a place where they don’t even like themselves much less love themselves.

The root of this dilemma stems back as far as there have been people to trip up. The enemy of mankind knows that if you can divide people against themselves, they become weak and easy to defeat. If you can progress deep enough into their psyche they eventually become their own worst enemy hurling internal insults at their own selves and perpetually shaming themselves, the end point of which is self-loathing and a complete loss of self-respect. Oh no-one is going to tell you this, much less admit it to themselves. But, it is a distinct reality of the human condition. There’s so little love in the world because people don’t even love themselves. Or worse, love does not prevail because people have a distorted view of what love is. They think love and self-respect accompany financial success or having a “perfect” body, marrying the right person or getting into the right school. They wrongly assign love worthy acts as something they must do or be in order to be worthy of love. And, in never being able to fully realize those love worthy acts or become, by their good behavior, love worthy people, they eek out love to themselves as if it was a scarce commodity.

Loving yourself is a decision you make about yourself in the same way it is a decision you make about other people. When you have a new baby, no-one has to remind you to love them. When you meet a potential life partner, though you hardly recognize it, you have made a conscious decision to love that person. You didn’t “fall” in love, you chose love based upon certain criteria you already decided. In the same way, you make a decision to love yourself! You cannot say, as some falsely report, that you choose love as long as the behaviors are right or the conditions are right or the time is right. Love, real love, exists above behaviors. It is not fleeting, flitting around based on whether or not the sun is out or the vibe feels good or if that certain someone says the right things. Love is so much bigger and so much more important than that! Love is the most necessary ingredient of the human condition and you need it more than anything else you could ever need!

Do you know where I learned this? I learned it from God. God loves me unconditionally, past, present and future. He loved me into finally loving myself. He continues to love me despite me and for that I am forever grateful. He taught me that love isn’t something you reserve for good behavior, but rather something you decide to do no matter what. Love does not change and alter itself according to the ebb and flow of life. It is not dependent upon conditions. It is persistent and determined and never ending. It is to be freely and liberally shared with others. In so doing, it finally persuades your stubborn heart to apply it to yourself; to love yourself!

You must learn to love yourself, not in a conceited or inflated way, but in the true depths of your being. You decide to love yourself, not because you are so good or so righteous or somehow have achieved perfection, but rather because you are imperfect and not always good and maybe seldom of your own works, righteous. You love yourself despite your frail humanity and weakness. You love yourself even when you falter and fail. You love yourself because your Father in heaven loves you and wants nothing less for you…ever!

You would be surprised to find that the weird stuff you do and think is the exact same weird stuff we all do and think. We are all in this thing together. Your secret sins are no worse than my secret sins. Your propensity towards error is no greater than my propensity towards error. We are all people, wonderfully flawed and unique, seeking in unending revolutions, endless expressions of love. Be yourself! Express yourself. Love yourself, not because you deserve it but rather because you need it. No-one is worthy of love as love chooses its object first and not after.

Decide today to stop entertaining the accusations about everything you are not. Stop focusing in on what isn’t right about you or what things you foolishly have concluded need revision. Instead embrace who you are; who God made YOU to be and give every bit of that loveliness to a love starved and dying world. You are a wonderful, unique masterpiece formed, made and created by God to help other people love themselves too!

Oh my friends, God is love…

Just some good thoughts…

 

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Perpetual Self Analysis… or Better, I Want to Throw Up!


At one time in my life, I was an avid reader of self-help books. I simply devoured the material. You name it, I read it. And amidst all my frenzied study, I felt great. I felt like I had finally discovered the answers to all of my questions. But, looking back at my life, it’s obvious now that my dedicated study was based on one false premise; namely that something was wrong with me; something deeply flawed and in dire need of repair. Self-help promised me discovery. It promised me understanding and liberty from the things that assailed me. It persuaded me that if I just looked deep enough through perpetual self analysis, the remedies were all waiting for me.

Flash forward 20 years and now I want to throw up. Self analysis is a treacherous game that promises freedom while actually offering only bondage and slavery. You don’t become better from self analysis, you become worse. Self analysis purports that inside of you is some indwelling, profound goodness, that if discovered will make all your dreams come true. It suggests that if you can just eliminate enough bad behaviors or thoughts or actions, you will reach righteous nirvana whereby all of the answers will suddenly become breathtakingly clear. The problem is it aint true. It’s the same lie that fuels religion, a more acceptable, code name for self-help. Religion offers that if you can just get “good” enough, God will finally hear your prayers and help you or worse stop effing with you! It implies that all of your problems stem from something you are or are not doing. It seeks to eliminate your spiritual opponent and replace him with “you versus you” with you being the little devil on one of your own shoulders. And while the multitude spends their days embroiled in whether or not they are sinning or did sin or might sin, they have stopped living and succumbed to slavery.

Time spent in perpetual self-analysis is wasted time. It is pure futility in the truest sense of the word. As you probe deeper and deeper into yourself you will find only more darkness, more error, more problems. The Bible says that in your flesh dwells no good thing. It’s the spirit inside of you, once you become born again, that is good. All the rest is you succumbing to a cruel, evil master! All you will ever discover is a “natural man” with sin embedded in his blood line, lost and without hope; without God in this world! Analyzing and judging yourself, for whatever noble cause you have assigned it, is nothing more than you fighting against you. It’s you dwelling on everything that might be wrong with you in an effort to become a better you. Newsflash! You don’t get better by dwelling on and focusing on what is wrong with you. Instead you get weaker, more unsure, more doubtful and generally worse off than when you started. The world won’t tell you this because the world is busy hiding the real source of your problems.

Here is a deep thought! If there was no source of evil in the world, you would never have a problem. Life absent an adversary would work beautifully well in all respects. With no darkness there would only be light. But, this life is not absent an adversary! The adversary is ultimately responsible for every problem you have ever had. The treachery is found in convincing you that you are somehow the source of your own problems. If only you were better here. If only you made better choices. If only you could figure it out. If only your thinking was smarter… If only. Thinking this lie; a lie that has been drummed into our thinking, over and over and over, makes you the problem. It removes your spiritual opponent from the equation. Jesus never sinned, never stepped aside, never made a mistake, yet he suffered. You get it?

Self judgment, which if you’re honest, is what you are doing when you analyze yourself, divides you against you. It splits you up. It causes you to hate yourself. It persuades you to total up, catalog and tally every wrong you have ever done under the guise of making you do right. No-one gets better or stronger functioning this way. You cannot slice yourself into pieces and expect to be made whole. You cannot carve up your own heart and expect a healthy heart! This is the problem with Christianity today. Instead of turning their focus to God and His goodness, most Christians are obsessed with focus on themselves. And in doing so, they are easily defeated. You’ll never believe God to receive His promises with a head full of “what’s wrong with me.”

Your job as God’s lovely little human is to get your mind off yourself! Stop thinking about yourself, dwelling on yourself, analyzing yourself and judging yourself. Stop it! It’s not noble, it’s pathetic and weak! Instead just live your life. God, by way of His wonderful son, fixed everything that was ever wrong with you. He did for you what you could never do for yourself. That’s how wonderful He is, my friend! What He wants from you is a mind free from self-judgment, liberated from self-analysis and walking in the freedom that He gave you! You can read your self-help books. You can learn from anything. But, learn because you are already wonderful, blessed and accepted, no matter what you do or do not do!

You can break free from that nagging, irritating critic that lives inside your head, but it takes a commitment on your part. Stop indulging it. Stop accepting it. Stop buying into it! The troubles you are facing are so because you have a spiritual opponent that seeks nothing but pain and torture for you. It’s not you, it’s him! He gains access but what you will and will not think about; where you will and will not put your focus! Stop throwing up on yourself, wipe off your mouth and walk out in the freedom God gave you! There’s no such thing as self-help! It’s God’s help…

Just some good thoughts…

 

Waiting to Live…


Imagine you found yourself with just three months left to live. After you got past the dread of it all, what would you do? It seems you would seek to spend your remaining time on the things that mattered most. In the front of your mind would be all of the people who you love, with you most assuredly making the commitment to make sure they knew just how much. Your moments would all become precious and you would take nothing for granted. Putting things off for the future would quickly become a thing of the past. You would endeavor to live your last days with all that you are. Well, my friend, you don’t need a death sentence to stop waiting to live…

Most people have become adept at the waiting game. They are waiting for the conditions to be just right. They are waiting to have enough money. They are waiting to reach a certain age or get married or have some kids. They are waiting to feel good or safe. They are always looking to some future day when all they ever wanted will have finally arrived. They are waiting until they get off of work or for the weekend or for that grand vacation next month. But sadly, the majority of your life will be lived in the spaces in-between. Life is found in each new moment of the day. It’s getting ready in the morning. It’s driving to work. It’s getting ready for bed. It’s the mundane and the routine. It’s happiness and struggles, joy and pain. It’s feeling at ease and feeling threatened. It’s having what you need and not having what you need. It’s life and all that goes with it.

It seems logical then, seeing we are all in this thing together, that your job is to learn how to live your life. Your task is to embrace the struggle. Get into the fight. Stop putting off and putting up with everything. Quit waiting for another day. Do the things that matter now. Capitalize on the moments that are now. Use your time available now, not when you get past the next big problem. Choose good thoughts right now, not when it looks like things are lining up. Be happy and uplifting and kind. Love people, bless people, help people! In short, be that wonderful person you really are inside today, not later when circumstances get better; not after you get the promotion; not when people finally treat you right, but right frikkin now, today!

You see, the grand deception is that you will always have more time. You can do it tomorrow, figure it out tomorrow, get better tomorrow. And while you are living with unlimited tomorrows, nothing worthwhile gets done today. Oh you can do important stuff, serious stuff, but do those things really impact your life in meaningful and fulfilling ways? Are those things you focus on today the things that will take your focus when your life becomes very short? None of us have unlimited days (at least not in this life), so our number one priority is to make our days count. Live with purpose, on purpose with all that you have and all that you are! Learn new things. Pursue new goals. Those things where you already excel, excel all the more! Give what you have got to give. All of you! All of the time!

Every one of us is unique and has a special place in the world. No-one can duplicate you and all that you are. But, you have to get busy doing you! You have to move beyond the endless distractions and threats and worries, into something new, namely what you have to offer to the world. What good part of you have you been holding back? What loveliness, what deep love and concern, what passion have you been extinguishing while you wait and wait for that day that never comes? What supreme goodness exists inside of you that you keep waiting to give out? Give yourself! Pour yourself out! Produce what only you can produce. Write it, paint it, sculpt it! Do it! Do it now! If you don’t do it, it won’t get done, at least not in the way you were supposed to do it!

Your mind was designed to thrive in the moments called now. All your energy, your perceptions, your insights, your love, are there for you right now. The thrill in the vast unexplored life exists now. The untapped learning, the excitement of new things, the beauty and unparalleled variety are here right now. But, you can only begin to perceive them when you finally decide to stop waiting to live, waiting to love, waiting for the future, but instead live now! Why not be the best employee; the best husband; the best father or mother; the most loving, kind person, now? Why settle for a 60% version of yourself? Why be satisfied with a C? Why fool yourself into believing you could be all you ever wanted to be, while still holding the best part of you back? Indeed, write the song, invent the tool, start the group, but do it now!

You don’t have to wait to navigate the uncertainty of your time running out soon, to make the decision to live! You can choose to live right now, today! You can go all in! You can leave it all out on the field! You can say what you have always wanted to say, be who you always wanted to be, do all you ever wanted to do, right now with all that you are! Don’t spend another day waiting for a future day to live. Live right now, in this moment, as if it was your last, because in a sense it is your last as you can’t ever get those moments back! Be the person you know to be today! You can! You must! Stop waiting. Live life; your life, now!

I love you…

Just some good thoughts…

 

 

Getting Unstuck (Take It On Already)…


I would hazard a guess, based on my personal experience, age and general listening plus paying attention, that many people get stuck along the way in life. Something happened or didn’t happen. They have endured some affliction. Some gotcha got them or even they may have enjoyed way too much of a good thing for way too long… Suffice it to say, they have become stuck, as in not moving forward, aka stopped in their tracks, fast forward, stagnating away in a perpetual pool of nothing happens. What sticks it to you to make you stuck and how can you escape it?

All of life is on the move. Only dead things stay still. You can either egress or digress. You flourish or you wither. You continue to grow or you begin to die. No matter how you wrap it, life was designed to involve forward action. People, in general, are at their best as long as they are moving towards something. You don’t have to be in a full sprint and at times you are allowed to pause, but when you stop altogether, that’s where the trouble starts. People stop moving for a variety of different reasons. Some find themselves embroiled in a problem for which there appears to be no solution. Others have long given up on their dreams or accepted the falsity that they had no dreams. Some think they are too old, too fat, too dumb, too lazy or too anything that convinces them it’s okay to surrender. For others it may be a mistake they made 40 years ago or even last month. Some are just plain old worn out by life. Regardless of the shape or form it comes in, ceasing from forward movement is always not true!

Full speed living means that you take on an issue as soon as it appears. Like children do so beautifully, you create a large fuss about your needs not being met then not let it go until something happens. Children are persistent. Adults are complacent. Children are honest. Adults lie to themselves to make things okay. Children ask for help right away. Adults ask for help just after all hell has broken loose. The quickest and easiest way to solve a problem is right when it occurs. You take it on and deal with it right now! Letting things go, a national epidemic, allows our difficulties and troubles to become entrenched. Once entrenched, like allowing yourself to weigh too much, is that much harder from which to escape. And, your habits of letting it go must be confronted with that much more resolve, a habit you have not been practicing. Then, no wonder you find yourself stuck! People aren’t talked out of their dreams overnight. They are talked out of them over days and months and years. You can’t become too old or too fat or too lazy unless you have let something go for too long! You are worn out not by life, but by your refusal to fight back. Even mistakes, no matter how egregious, represent a moment in time; one you can never get back.

Each precious day of your life you are in a contest. Your mind is the arena. You can battle and strive or you can give in and retreat, but no matter what you do, you are in a fight. Wishing away the fight won’t end the fight. Ignoring the fight just leads to eventual defeat because you are still getting hit. Numbing yourself to the fight is more of the same. You have to learn to fight back! You have to learn what exactly is going on. If you don’t and many, many don’t, then you lose. You get stuck then whittled away in a shitty existence always wishing you would have and should have etc. And worse, all that crap that’s been threatening you a lifetime starts settling in on you. Can’t you see it? You stopped moving forward. You quit fighting for yourself. You gave in…

Your life is not over, no matter what has happened or where you find yourself! You may have stopped moving for awhile, but if you are reading this, it aint over yet! You still have hope. You can change once you finally learn what has been perpetually kicking your butt! But, learn you must. You aren’t alone in your quest. In fact, you are just like all the rest of us. You are in the contest because all people are in the contest. You may not have been competing very well, but you can learn to compete. You can learn what it means to fight spiritually with spiritual enablements and quit relying on your intelligence, your brain, your extreme rationality. You can see because God wants you to see. All you need is a little humility and a little willingness to ask for help. Or you can sit there, defeated, pretending to be okay, and wait for the end. “Why sit we here until we die?”

The simplest way out of your dilemma is to begin moving forward again. Move forward! Stop looking around you bewildered, confused, distressed and decide to make a move. Take some action. Come to my Bible fellowship. Pray about it and then listen carefully. Read your Bible. Talk to a friend. Do something. Don’t just sit there mentally, do something. You will quickly learn that once you make a move, God makes a move. Once you act, God acts. God won’t make you move (trust me), but He will honor your believing efforts. There is an answer. There are always answers.

No matter how entrenched you’ve become in that giant bowl of spaghetti, know this, once long ago there was just one piece of pasta, from which you could easily escape. You just need to start grabbing at the strands, one at a time until they’re all gone. With God’s help you can do it. You can move ahead. You can the life you have imagined!

Just some good thoughts…

 

Getting Out of Your Own Head…


Have you ever had a scenario play out where the answer to your dilemma was something totally unexpected or not at all what you had envisioned? At times in life, in your personal distress and commitment to solving a problem, you conclude that the more time you spend in resolution activities; the more you expend yourself in searching for a solution; the more you refuse to let it go, the more likely you are to come across the answer. But, what if it doesn’t work that way at all? What if the answer isn’t to keep seeking, but rather to simply move ahead. What if the peace you are after comes not from holding onto but rather from releasing? Maybe you just need to get out of your own head.

Have you ever had the experience whereby the harder you try to remember something the more elusive it becomes, but when you finally let it go, it comes to you perfectly and without any strain. Life wasn’t intended to be brought about by strain. Nature doesn’t strain. Love doesn’t strain. The best things in life come about as naturally as breathing or sleeping. But, if you obsess over your breathing or falling asleep both become impossible and labored. That alone should prove to you that life was not designed to spring forth from strain, but instead the absence of it. That which you do with stress; with ardent pressing; with over-effort fails to deliver the things you need the most.

Your human condition; your ego; your insistence on solving your problems yourself lead only to frustration. Stress and worry promise that if you put in enough time; enough focus; enough persistence you will eventually find the solution. But, has it ever been successful? Have you ever, in the midst of your frenetic worry, been able to get to anything useful or helpful? If you are honest you know that only after you have conceded or in your futility and misery decided to let it go, have you been able to see something you weren’t able to see before. In the absence of troubling worry your answer comes; it always comes as it necessarily must. Anxiety and worry serve no other purpose than to drive you inward and keep you there. In churning and debating and distressing you begin to work against yourself. You cease from helping and instead hinder.

Getting out of your own head is about recognizing just how much time to give a thing. It’s determining quickly whether this issue; this false threat to your existence;  this foreboding series of thoughts deserve your valuable time and attention. Perhaps you have been feeling like maybe something is wrong with your body. In the final analysis if something is wrong it will come forth whether you like it or not. It will reveal itself. No amount of consideration on your part will alter that reality. And, God forbid, you would have to take on and deal with that reality. Your hours spent in dutiful consideration would have no impact on that reality. Instead they would serve only to rob you of the moment that is right now. Day after day, night after night absorbed in worry and fear would do nothing to change  that reality, but instead encourage it. In short, all that time spent in your own head will profit you nothing! Also, I should add, most of the time that dreaded  reality was not a reality at all, but rather a skillfully executed drain on your existence.

Getting out of your own head is based upon understanding just what it is you do and do not control! What part has been assigned to you to manage and what part are you not supposed to try to manage? Trying to manage affairs out of your control is a prescription for heartache and pain. No human that has ever lived has successfully thought their way out of things over which they have no control! Good thinking; excellent problem solving skills; exceptional capacities to discern difficulties are all powerless against things in which they have no power. Dwelling on and living in those variables does nothing more than to keep you captured, a prisoner in your own thinking.

Hidden behind your insistence in solving all your problems with your thoughts is fear. You are afraid! You are terrified that something is going to get you. And you know of yourself that there is really nothing you can do to protect yourself. All of your time spent sincerely seeking a solution to things that threaten you are wasted time, failing to recognize where true protection and guidance come from. Your preservation from the awful things in life come only from God. He alone can preserve you and watch over you. You alone won’t get the job done. Thus, time spent challenging that assertion is wasted time; pointless activity.

Getting out of your own head means to leave your problems; your issues; your dilemmas with God and to move the hell on!  Let it go. Let them go! Get outside your own head. Walk away. Drop it all off. Pitch them all into God’s bucket and if you accidentally take them back, pitch them all in again. Refuse the temptation to solve fear because you aint going to solve it! Fear, always an illusion, cannot be solved by consideration, but only by refusal of consideration. Fear and worry must be starved out. Thinking and stressing and worrying act as food strengthening and encouraging fear towards more and more damage. Thank God for taking care of you and give it ALL to Him! Walk away my friend, walk away…

Your life, though you may not yet be convinced, was not supposed to be focused on everything that could go wrong. You are not equipped to take on the prospect of every bad thing that might assault you. Instead you were intended to give it all to something, Someone much bigger and smarter than yourself! In doing so, you are finally able to relax; to trust; to rely on Someone else to care for you. That is real, blessed life. That is getting out of your own head!

Just some good thoughts…

 

Why Am I Struggling?


There are times in your life in which you just don’t feel right. And if you are like most humans it drives you nuts. It encompasses you. It engulfs you. You find yourself drowning in it. In response to it you do what you’ve been taught to do. You analyze it and you analyze it and you analyze it some more. You think about it all day and you can’t find an answer of peace though you’ve searched your mind from pillar to post. The more you seek the solution the worse you feel. Instead you discover more bad feelings and more logical causes for your dilemma. You just cannot seem to get there no matter how hard you try. Yet, you dutifully persist, confused and dismayed tunneling further and further underground. The deeper you go the darker it gets and you find no relief. Eventually you have to ask yourself in your futility, “Am I doing something wrong? Is there something else I do not know? Is there a solution to my private nightmare?” The good news is yes my friend, you are doing something wrong.

Life in its basic essence is spiritual. There are spiritual causes for the things that plague you. However, spiritual problems cannot be discerned by your five senses reasoning. Accordingly, you are NEVER going to find your answers by searching the senses realm, though you search diligently night and day forever. Instead all you will find is heartache and loss. All you will discover is more darkness; more obscurity; more things that serve to cloud your mind and render you helpless, hopeless, lost… Darkness works most effectively by garnering your consideration. It presents an inscrutable form of bait designed to appeal to your human reasoning. And evil knows it can easily defeat your human reasoning. Oh yes, it is evil! It is at work in the world to steal, to kill and to destroy and it does so by capturing your attention. And, like every worthwhile bait, behind it is a hook from which you will find it hard to escape.

You are struggling because you are being led down the path of unhappiness. It’s a well worn path because of the millions that have tread it down. And depending upon how long each person traversed on that path, the more misery they have encountered in their life. But, it does not have to be this way. There is a way out but the way out is not what you thought at all. The way out seems to stand in absolute defiance to what we have been taught to do. It is very, very difficult to turn that thinking machine off. It is even harder to resist the temptation to track it like a hound and follow it wherever it may lead. But, resist it you must. Temptation, though always veiled and hard to discern, works by finding a way to get your attention and later keep your attention. You escape by your lack of attention. You break free by deciding to change your focus. You make up your mind to look at something else!

The problem you face today is an insatiable drive to get you to focus on yourself. Everywhere and in every way you are being driven back to yourself, your feelings, your thoughts. “Take time for yourself!” “Focus on yourself!” Self, self, self! “You are most important!” “You are number one!” You, you, you! Obviously your needs are important and of course you want to be happy, but your happiness is most fulfilled when your focus isn’t yourself! I’ll say it again. Your happiness is most fulfilled when your focus isn’t on yourself! It’s a trick. It’s a trap. It is a delusion on a grand scale. It is a lie. It seems right and sounds good, but it is still a damnable lie. When your focus is yourself, all you will find is yourself with all of your faults, failings and imperfections. You have to learn to look at something else.

Have you ever noticed how you can be feeling super crappy about yourself or your problems, imagined or real, and then something demands your focus and takes you away from yourself for a bit? Suddenly you don’t feel so bad or your problems aren’t that big anymore. Your issues didn’t get any smaller, but your focus changed enabling you to see things for what they really are instead of what you imagined them to be in your obsessive focus on yourself. Few things feel as good as a full day of work where you actually focused on the work instead of yourself. Or, maybe the grandkids came over and you focused on blessing them for a while! Wow, suddenly things don’t seem as bad as you thought. These little delights serve as valuable clues. You weren’t designed to focus on yourself, save yourself, or fix yourself. You were made to function best when your focus was on others, expecting God to take care of you! Self-focus is a struggle from which you can easily escape. 

Stop, cease, quit looking inside of yourself to find something good. End the endless stewing and churning and burning. Make up your mind to get out of your own mind and live a little. Stop being so damn cerebral! Cease from living in a world where you are encased with an obsessive focus on yourself. Quit it and for God’s sake let it go! Let it go! You haven’t yet been successful in solving you, have you? Well, you aren’t going to, so I will save you a little (or a lot) of time! Instead move that lovely mind of yours towards something else besides you. Help someone. Build someone up. Do something nice for someone! However or whatever you do, move your focus away from yourself because self-focus sucks and leads you down a miserable path! Outward focus, helpful focus, anything but me focus, leads you to something beautiful and worthwhile. It leads you to life and all the wonder and beauty it entails. 

Choose life, choose others, choose to struggle no more!

Just some good thoughts…

 

 

 

Yeah, But What if You’re Wrong?


I’m not sure why it is that human beings have an absolute repulsion concerning the possibility of being wrong about something. Somewhere, somehow we have been schooled to believe that we must always be right, no matter the cost. What makes it more incredulous is the amount of years a person lives in an average life-span and within that relatively brief encounter feel in some way that they have mastered the game of living. It’s as if we’ve connected being right with our self-image and the potential of being wrong admits to a flaw in our character. With that I submit we are likely more wrong than we are right and being able to accept that introduces us to a whole new world of infinite possibilities.

What a person believes about their life is the life they end up living, right or wrong, limited or unlimited. A person’s life is literally the sum total of their prevailing beliefs. As you believe, so you live. If you expect much you live much. If you expect little or meager or survival, you live small, minimally or just barely. The grand irony being what you personally choose to believe is how you end up living. Assigning your life results to decisions made by a higher power or anything outside of yourself is a recipe for disaster. Maybe you are wrong…

Your beliefs and your life are the chicken and the egg conundrum. You think as the egg that your life simply plays out and that you must somehow finds ways to adapt to your ever similar circumstances and conditions. Yet, you fail to recognize that you are in fact the chicken and preceded the eggs. The circumstances you encounter with regularity are simply the natural outworking of the beliefs in which you are persisting. This is a system that cannot fail. Instead of spending your existence in futility fighting against causes you are engendering, you need to acknowledge the possibility that you may have some wrong beliefs. Your wrong beliefs aren’t difficult to spot. They appear infinitely multiplied in those areas where you struggle. If you feel that God is angry with you because of some persistent failing, then it is easy for you to also believe that your suffering is a direct result of your wrong doings. In essence, you have been talked into a wrong belief with a predictable result, suffering.

It therefore appears logical that instead of enduring life in the same blind alleys, you should perhaps entertain the notion that maybe you’ve got it wrong. The beauty of children is found in their open hearts. They know that they don’t know and in so knowing learn, grow and evolve, that is until the world gets to them and begins dictating the limits of their potential or what they can and cannot have. By the time they reach adulthood they have already been programmed for unhappiness by well meaning parents, teachers and adults. And sadly, the older they get, the more fixed they become in their belief system. But, that was not God’s intention for man. God already knows how people think and as such offered them learning outside their own abilities and reasonings with the intent that man would remain humble in his heart like a child and continue to grow and evolve. You don’t need to exhaust yourself in figuring out life, but rather expend your efforts in humility.

The question to ask yourself is what do you believe about life? How do you think life really works? Why are some people wildly successful and others abject failures? What do you think about God? Do you know who God is or are your beliefs based upon a hodgepodge of things people have told you or worse, well meaning ministers and preachers? Is it true that by always doing the right thing your life will work out well or do you know many sincere Christians struggling to meek out an existence? Conversely, how many rotten people do you know living the good life or so it appears? You see, something is wrong in those equations and in not knowing you are powerless to make any meaningful changes.

If I could sum life up, as ostentatious as that idea is, I would sum it up by saying that what you believe is the master key to living. God’s promises both vast and abundant can only be realized by believing. Living a healthy life free of diseases and maladies is more dependent upon what you believe than it is upon how much you exercise or how much red meat you don’t eat. Your finances and prosperity and resources have little to do with how good you are but more to do with what you can believe and expect for yourself. For some a $100,000 salary is a windfall, but for others an insult! No category of your life is exempt from this principle! You don’t so much need to learn how to be successful as you need to learn how to believe to be successful. You must learn how to change your beliefs!

Life with all its manifold beauty and wonder as well as its nightmares and miseries comes to you and is experienced by you in direct accordance with your beliefs. You are not powerless or without remedy. What you lack is understanding. Where you’ve missed the mark is in not knowing what and how to believe. Once you learn to believe and in many cases no longer believe, life opens up to you in a fantastic way. Instead of blaming circumstances and God and your upbringing, you now begin to take responsibility for your own life. You learn to see and recognize where your beliefs should be challenged and in challenging find new, better, true beliefs. In the end or hopefully much sooner, you will find God the author of this blessed existence, the answer to your heartfelt prayers, your only real source of life and blessing and enduring freedom from all that ever ailed you!

You might be wrong about life, but what if you are right?

Just some good thoughts…