DNR ~ Diminished and Reduced…


ekg-001-an-electrocardiogram-heart-monitor-pulses-on-a-blue-grid-loop_r4m_frdh_thumbnail-full01I see depressed people. I see them everywhere. You can easily spot them by their lowered vitality; their lack of activity; that dimness in their eyes. They think that is just how life is and have settled into an existence that isn’t painful but isn’t pleasant either. They have unknowingly become diminished and reduced and need to be resuscitated!

The reason people reach this level in their thinking and let’s be honest, many, many people have, is because at the core of things, at the most elemental level they have been talked into believing things that aren’t true. It sounds simple and cheesy I know, but the things in life that appear complicated are often more simple than you think. Wrong thinking leads to wrong believing which leads to a sucky life! And to add insult to the proverbial injury, you are struggling against a force you can neither see nor discern absent spiritual insight. There is something, whether you believe it or not, that is actively working against your best interest, seeking to bring you down to some level of defeat or mediocrity or loss.

Your opponent is spiritual in nature and works within the systems of the world to bring you down to misery or frustration, to take away the life God has given you, to steal away your energy and passion for living. He does not work alone, but controls a vast network also hidden from view, hell-bent on feeding you some wrong conclusion! It’s called the systematizing of error and it’s damn effective! It’s a cause and effect where the effect did not come from the cause. It’s H2O minus an O. It’s 2 + 2 = 5. It’s an argument where the starting premise was wrong. It’s a scientific formula with an unaccounted for variation. In short, it’s a lie that needs to be challenged.

You may have noticed in your life, in those moments of clarity where you sort of “wake up” to some reality, that as soon as you begin to take steps to remedy a situation, you are besieged with challenges or distractions that take you right back to square one and back to your familiar, yet painful sleepy life! You can tell you are living mesmerized by this deceitful drug by the things that run across your mind. You ask yourself, “Is this all life is?” “Is this my lot in life to get up and go to work and come home and go to sleep?” The answer to these questions is hell-effin no! You’re just being hoodwinked, that’s all! You are being systematically talked out of things that matter. You are being fed lies, albeit minutely subtle lies, that reduce and diminish your existence.

Often, you’ll find that the things you once enjoyed have been taken away one by one without your consent. Or, something convinced you there was something wrong with those things you enjoyed and suggested you give them up. Have you noticed in today’s world, that someone is always telling us about the potential dangers of something we enjoy with suggestions that we curtail what we like to do? Don’t eat this! Don’t touch that! Watch out for those people! Be cautious! Don’t try that because it’s already been done! Pretty soon the whole world will be living on dry chicken breasts and zealously guarding against anything with a little flavor. Don’t you see it? It’s all part of a universal scheme; a system that seeks your personal liberty and enjoyment for life. And, it happened to us because we believed the lies!

The only solution to this world-wide dilemma is to get back to what is true. Stop allowing other people to define your life for you. Stop accepting the things that run across your mind as some kind of gospel. Just because you thought something, even many, many times doesn’t guarantee it is truth. In fact, those thoughts; those wrong beliefs are the source of your difficulties. You are limited by yourself and yourself alone! If you believe you will never have enough money, you will never have enough money, but that’s your sucky choice not mine! Choice – you get it? In your mind, in the secret places, you are making choices day by day. You are gathering information and making a choice. You just have to make sure that what you chose is actually true and not a lie. Anything that diminishes you, anything that reduces you, anything that boxes you in or closes you off is a LIE!

The truth will resuscitate you and bring you back to life. Your Creator is the author of life! As life’s source He will always open the doors and make a way for you! He’s not the god of religion, He is the God of life! He does not seek to take away and limit and reduce, He seeks to give and expand and offer you life more than abundant! You can break out of your rut; your depression; your less than abundant life simply by opening your heart to the truth. God already knows how much life has been sucking for you, so why not let go of everything you think you know and get back to life? You didn’t begin your life depressed and you don’t have to end it that way. Choose vitality. Choose energy. Choose life!

I don’t know about you, but I’m not signing that DNR!

Just some good thoughts…

 

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Fine Lines of Demarcation…


Drawing a line in the sand.  An old metaphor.“I am come that they might have life and that they might have it more abundantly!” exclaimed Jesus while explaining his purpose for mankind. Can you believe it? The reason God sent His son into the world was so that you and I could live a more than abundant life! God’s great promise is a life that is superabundant in every category, every facet and phase! So why do we often find ourselves living a less than abundant life? The answer can be found in the fine lines of demarcation between truth and error.

Error, in order to be believed and practiced, must follow closely alongside the genuine. If the error promoted is too far away from the truth, people will spot it and in most cases go another direction. When you travel you have to move in a certain direction to end up at the right destination. Depending upon how far you have to travel, being off just one degree will cause you to miss your location by a thousand miles. Many people miss the life they wished they could live by a thousand miles.

The truth found in God’s Word provides you with the genuine. The more you can align your life and believing with the genuine, the better results you will experience in your life. But, and its a big but, you have to be very, very, very clear on the doctrine. If you get real close but are off ever so slightly, you will miss the prize at the end. There are forces out there in the world ever working to move you away from the genuine with the goal of steal, kill and destroy. Error steals your happiness, your successes, your results. Error kills your enthusiasm for life while seeking to kill you in the process. Error destroys your accomplishments and potential rewards in the future.

The only way to be assured of the victory is to know what the Good Book says and more specifically, know what it says directly to you. For example the book of Romans, written directly to you, explains how Jesus Christ paid the full price for your sins (your missing the mark) past, present and future. He not only paid for your sins but he also paid for the consequences of those sins. Can you see your more than abundant life alive in those verses? Yet, what does the world teach you? What do the churches teach you? They tell you, you must do “good works” to earn God’s favor in your life. They become adept at condemning you and reminding you where you don’t “measure up.” Oh sure, they agree that Jesus Christ died for your sins, but in the same breath talk about sin, promote sin and laud sin! They ask if you are right with the Lord. They question if you are living your life the right way. But, how could I live my life the wrong way if Jesus Christ paid the price for everything that was ever wrong with me? Can you see the fine lines of demarcation? Can you recognize how the subtlety of wrong doctrine can cause you to spend a lifetime trying to earn something that God already freely and graciously gave to you? Can you discern how your struggle to make yourself right with God leads only to a life that is less than abundant?

Most Christians fail to utilize the power of God because they are still trying to do things that will make themselves right with God! You show me a person operating the power of God in his life and I’ll show you a person who believes who God says he is and has ceased from his own works! In order to get all of the things God says you can get, you have to persuade your mind of the things that God says are true! You have to be damn clear on the doctrine. People aren’t clear on the doctrine because they have drifted away from God’s Word and have been caught up in philosophies and tradition. I don’t blame the people for this, however… If I was taught to associate God with Him evaluating and judging my life, I wouldn’t want to read the book either. I would want nothing to do with that garbage! Yet that pervasive error is the very thing that keeps people from the only book that will actually save them!

It is religion that has done this to people. Religion, ever seeking to exercise control over man, has promoted these wrong doctrines. Religion is ever focused on what man does or doesn’t do. Religion places man at the center of things and blames him for failing to attain. Christianity is just the opposite. Christianity isn’t about what man does, but what God has done for man in Christ! Christianity, true Christianity, makes God its subject of focus. Christianity is God’s solution for a sick and dying world. Christianity is the more than abundant life promised in John 10:10…

I’m not asking you to slap your pastor or go and beat up your priest! Instead I’m asking you dig into that Word of God and see what it says about your life. Read those seven church epistles written directly to you. (Romans – Thessalonians) Stop participating in the good behavior games and learn about the freedom you have in Christ! Learn about all of the wonderful things God has already done for you and made available to you. Find out how to believe rightly and gain access to every good thing you ever wanted for your life! It’s all right there waiting for you folks, as long as you observe those fine lines of demarcation…

Just some good thoughts…

 

Don’t Be Mad at Money…


DollarMoney get’s a bad rap. Money in our society is just a medium of exchange. It’s not magical, nor is it evil. Having it doesn’t bring bad things into your life and there’s certainly nothing noble about not having it. It is simply the modern day method of trade. It is the means to get the things you need in life. So, why are people so messed up about it; even mad at it?

Here’s one place you might get it twisted. You’ve been tricked into associating money with greed, or in other words, something or someone sold you a lie. Have you ever noticed that people who think money is evil tend not to have much of it and when they get it, try to get rid of it as quickly as possible. Here’s a newsflash folks, you need money. Money may not buy you happiness, but it’s a damn site easier on you than poverty. It’s accepted that you don’t need incredible luxury, but if you’re honest, you probably need more than you have.

Did you know that people who are truly greedy never give the concept a second thought? But, there you are chastising yourself for wanting something nice. “Oh, that’s too much,” you say. And why exactly shouldn’t you have something nice? Who convinced you that your value was so low? Do you realize that it doesn’t make any difference to God whether you have a Mercedes or a Ford? Who is the car for anyway? Well, what blesses you? So, why would you think it matters? I submit it’s because you bought a lie. No-one gets anything in life without believing they can get it. The things you enjoy in your life, right at this very moment, you have believed to get. Whether you did it by hard work or by investing or expecting it from your parents, you believed for it. I’ve often mused why the children of wealthy parents seem to become wealthy themselves. Simple. They grew up accustomed to the best and naturally expected to have the best themselves. Lottery winners, generally unprepared for a windfall, tend to lose it quickly, so don’t think rich folk’s only advantage is starting with money!

What exactly is greed anyway? Greed begins where need ceases. Greed is the unbridled urge to acquire things. But make no mistake, greed is not the desire to have your needs met and have them met abundantly. Shoot man, that’s a promise from God. An abundant life is a life of abundance, so you figure it out. To say an abundance of money is somehow contrary to an abundant life is absurd. We aint trading cows honey, we’re using money. Greed has also been defined as having more than you need. So what do you need? Who decides that? You do! Follow my logic for a moment. If someone else defines what you need, where does that end? Let’s say you can afford a modest house. Is that greedy? You could always get a more modest house, right? Or what if you decided to sell that house and buy a larger, less modest house? Are you being greedy now? What if, in your prospering ways, you earn a ton of money? Are you now not allowed to buy a deluxe house? Because,  you don’t need it? Again, who gets to decide that? You see it all becomes very foolish. People are mad as hell at Joel Olsteen because he lives in a mansion. Joel said he receives no salary from his ministry and makes his money via book sales and speaking engagements. Yet, because he speaks a positive message of God’s love for people and preaches messages of encouragement for God, he should somehow live in a modest shack approved by the masses! Whether he needs a mansion or a modest, deluxe home is his business and why on earth should we care so much? Well, we care because our own needs aren’t met and we are still mad at money!

If I read one more meme attributing virtue to not having money, I think I might scream! There’s absolutely nothing noble about not having your needs met. There’s no joy in not being able to do what you really want to do. There’s no happiness in constantly repeating that you cannot afford something or worse, “if I can’t afford it, I don’t need it.” You know debt isn’t the answer, but aspiring for better is a natural God-inspired desire. Your life is worth having the best. Other people have the best, why not you?

Obviously I’m not talking about being poor and doing the best you can to escape it. Nor am I condemning the simple life minus a multitude of stuff. I’m confronting the notion that money is bad or evil and that you are greedy if you want it. I’m challenging the idea that all wealthy people are crooked and somehow wrong because they haven’t bought into the lie. My good friend at work lives in a very wealthy neighborhood and he says those folks are some of the most giving people you have ever met. Hmmmm, something to that maybe?

The love of money is the root of all evil, not the money itself. Money is just money. Evil enters in when you do ‘whatever’ to get it and then use it and the power associated with it to hurt people and utlimately hurt yourself.

So, what is your takeaway prize for indulging in this discourse? You need to change your mental relationship concerning money and take away both the magic and the evil. Money is simply a means of exchange; exchanging your money for the things you need and want. God wants you to live a more than abundant life and you’re gonna need a little cash to get the job done!

Believe to get your paper!

Just some good thoughts…

The Madness of the Mediocre Life…


mediocremajorityLet me start by acknowledging that every person is completely unique in their personal desires and aspirations. What success is for me isn’t success for you. That being said, there’s a huge difference between success in life and the madness of mediocrity.

No-one ever grew up dreaming of being mediocre. Nobody foresaw a life of quiet desperation, feeling stunted, stymied and held back? You sure didn’t start out that way, did you? You began, as we all began, with stars in your eyes and grand thoughts of who you could be.  Then you grew up. The world didn’t change, you did.  You settled. You negotiated for average. You exchanged your A level life for a C level existence. You did it because it was safe. It wasn’t everything you ever wanted but it was some of the things you wanted. When it comes to your one and only run through, and because you have the exact same right to pursue your happiness as every other person, you can still choose the best! You can go for the Olympic gold instead of rejoicing in that you made the team!

Now, don’t get it twisted. I’m not claiming some type of superiority over you. I’ve spent my fair share of time in the misty flats… (Well, it’s not really fair, but that’s how clichés work.) Yet, I have a great advantage that I’m ever privileged to enjoy. Someone lovingly taught me about God a long time ago and I’ve never stopped learning about Him to this day. You see, this whole notion of living an abundant life came from Him. This aint self-help rama-lama, this is real life. God’s plan for you isn’t a litany of rules or pervasive condemnation from failure to follow them. The master plan goes back to the original plan – which is you (men) and some cute gal or you (women) and some hot guy living in paradise. You ever been to Hawaii? Well, that aint Eden! People started out in Paradise, spent many years in the misty flats (see I’m not alone) and then God made available the paradise experience anew. The paradise experience is life in all of its varied and splendid manifestations. It’s life without fear. It’s life with answered prayers. It’s life where Someone a lot smarter than you knows how to get you to live out your full potential. Nothing about God is ever mediocre. Religion is damn mediocre because it’s focused on not doing (living) more than doing!

Lest you conclude that life’s not fair, think about how people typically function. I’ve managed people for many years and am always amazed by an interesting phenomenon. It’s only a matter of time before the workers reduce their job down to the most minimal level possible to still get paid and not get fired. Except of course that one guy. This blog isn’t to him because his life isn’t going to be mediocre. But for the majority, that’s how it seems to go. Now you know, if you are honest, that you have a little something inside of you that says there is so much more. It whispers in your relationships. It beckons you at work. Its inspiration flashes across your mind oh so briefly with glimpses of how your life could be. It’s not only possible, it’s what your life is supposed to be.

How you get there is a whole different story. You don’t get there until you get there. You won’t arrive until you arrive. It’s not a ship coming in, it’s the ship you’re already steering. The cause must precede the effect. You have to first recognize that it is even possible, then (the hardest part), you have to convince your old obstinate; C grade getting; settling for less mind that you both can and will have it. It’s God will already, so you’d be sorta crazy not to make it your will!

Now here is the greatest irony of all ironies. It takes the exact same amount of believing to achieve greatly as it takes to achieve the mediocre. Not the same amount of work, but the same amount of believing expectation. If you expect more, you will do more. You’re not so much lazy as you are misguided. How many people do you know slaving away for some company accepting whatever they get and convincing themselves they’re still blessed? Abundance means abundance and mediocre means mediocre. I remember someone once telling me that I didn’t need a fancy car, just something that ran and got me to work. Now you can sell yourself that story for a while, but in the end you know you want more for yourself. And don’t you go telling me I’m greedy. Greedy people never consider that notion. The ones that think it are usually the ones not getting their needs met; the ones settling for the mediocre life.

There’s no need for me to tell you that life isn’t all about money and possessions. Life is about fulfillment and satisfaction and joy. Are you fulfilled, satisfied and joyful? Then you do the math and figure that one out. The abundant life God promises is available to you if you really want it. But, make no mistake, you’re going to need God’s help to find it. Oh it’s right in front of you, but you won’t see it without some help from the (good) spiritual side. Trust me on that one.

Look brothers!  Listen sisters! This thing is damn short, this run through on earth. Your time, my time is finite (for now). You already know what you want; what you dream of; what turns you on. So learn about our God and get it; do it; experience it. Your only limitation is what you can persuade your mind to believe.

Your success is not my success and my success is not your success. But, success is success and surely that beats the hell out of the madness of the mediocre life!

Just some good thoughts…