Focus on Your Good Bits…


fokusIf you are like me and I prefer to assume you are because then I will like you more :-), you have learned to focus on those few areas that you need to improve rather than all of the things that make you awesome! It’s sort of like a sickness isn’t it? You spend 16 of your waking hours doing what you are supposed to do and 5 minutes saying something you shouldn’t have said and then spending another hour ruminating on why you said it and that you really shouldn’t have said it. Sound familiar? Wouldn’t it seem reasonable to applaud yourself for 16 hours of solid effort and to pay little attention to your one mistake? Indeed!

The world we live in, rife with media input, has done a masterful job of tricking you and me into obsessing over anything that may hint at imperfection. “My belly is too fat!” which discounts  the fact that the ideal “belly” belongs to a 16-year-old with the metabolism of a racehorse. Or my hair or my eyes or my feet are too large or my cankels etc., etc. Whether it be physical imperfections (assuming there is “physical perfection”) or problems with our character or a propensity to sin (so-called) or just plain ol’ ability to actually make mistakes, we have universally bought into a gigantic scheme that gets us to focus on what’s wrong with us instead of focusing on our good bits…

So you might be asking, why does it even matter? Well, it matters because incessant focus on what is wrong with you leads to one perpetually long, unhappy existence. “I’m no good” “I’m not okay” “Why can’t I be like such and such” all presume a condition that may not actually exist. What if you are very, very similar to most human beings? What if the things you think and say and do are remarkably like the things most people think and say and do? What if, huh? What if that hour you just wasted obsessing over the “dumb thing” you said at the staff meeting was forgotten by everyone at the staff meeting 5 minutes after it ended? Pointless me thinks…

But here is another thing to consider that trumps even a wasted unhappy life. If it’s true that what you focus on expands, then focusing on what is wrong can only lead to more and more of “what is wrong!”  Chew on that for a moment… If, unbeknownst to you, the things you focus on in life are conspiring to come your way, then it seems focusing on what you don’t like can only produce more and more of “what you don’t like.” Are you beginning to see the large-scale scheme I was referring to earlier? Let’s say you are a pretty good person, according to your own estimates, but you have a few weaknesses. So you spend inordinate amounts of time working on your weaknesses. Sure, it seems noble because you are, after all, working on them. But, here’s a thought, have you ever known a successful person that spends more time working on their weaknesses than what they are good at, who remains successful? Probably not, right? Successful people, while fully aware of their weaknesses, choose rather to focus on the things in which they excel. Obsessing over weakness serves only to exemplify weakness. How many good-hearted people have you met that can’t go 5 minutes into the conversation without telling you something that is “bad” about themselves? Or conversely, how many people have you met that even dare to mention something they are good at? World-wide sickness, my friends.

A wise man named Eric taught me long ago in a conversation about child rearing, that the way to get your child past their problems is by highlighting the things they do well! Think about that for a moment. Your child is sitting there quietly watching TV and you don’t say a word, but as soon as they get rambunctious, you want to give them a lecture, thereby reinforcing the behavior you don’t like!  What works for children works for adults, except adults no longer have their parents to guide them in the way in which they should go.

So the solution, weary travelers is to decide to stop focusing on what is wrong with you. The Good Lord, who knows everything, is well aware of your imperfections and loves you just the same and always will! He’s not unhappy with you, so you owe it to yourself to follow suit. Focus on the best parts of yourself. Focus on the good things you have in your life. Focus on the miracle that is your life and in so doing can begin to appreciate what you do have and not obsess on what you don’t have.

If you will become determined to focus on the good, then you will find the good has actually been pursuing you all along. Let that good catch up to you by being so grateful for the life you already have.  And for an added bonus, try focusing on the good in other people as well. Shoot, you may just find yourself surrounded by a lot of wonderful people.

Focus on your good bits!

Just some good thoughts…

Loose Threads…


Quotation-Marilyn-Brant-day-rest-Meetville-Quotes-143182You know what you need to do with those loose threads, right? Snip ’em, burn em’, yank ’em, do something, just don’t leave them there dangling, annoying you all day. Funny how something so small and insignificant can make such an impact on your mind. Similarly, loose thoughts; thoughts that we sort of let hang around, dangling, uninvited yet apparent, impact our lives in a profound way. We often find ourselves out-of-sorts, anxious or restless with no earthly idea why. We know we don’t feel peaceful, satisfied or assured, but the cause escapes us. And to make matters worse, we start looking for the cause in our surroundings or in our spouse, job, house etc. But in so doing, we miss the mark by a hundred miles. The real cause is likely a loose thought or number of loose thoughts we failed to snip, burn or yank out.

Assuming you’re not drunk, it’s likely you are somewhat aware of the thoughts going through your mind. I mean you are the one doing the thinking after all. And, for a thought to have any type of impact on you it has to have registered at some level. So, it’s not so much what you thought but rather what you did or failed to do with those thoughts. Intentional living is all about doing something with those rogue thoughts. Amazingly, three or four unchecked vagrant thoughts can alter your mind and your mood in a subtle yet powerful way. Imagine you just woke up and a number of ill-defined thoughts are running through your mind. Your throat has been sore lately and since you smoke cigarettes it’s likely to be throat cancer. I mean you saw that Terri lady talking through that talk box. Randomly leading to, “It’s good that we have the money to make our patio an awesome place and wow, once all the flowers and bushes are inside the curbing it will be a showplace. But, it won’t matter much because shortly after you start inviting people over to enjoy it, you will be dead.” Followed by, “Things have been going very well lately. It’s shame that such a tragedy is coming!” As strange as this sounds, this was me yesterday morning. When I finally got up I was irritated. I drove to work talking to God about why I “always” seemed to feel restless and pondering why I couldn’t relax. I arrived at work still melancholy, still restless and wondering if something at work was bringing me down. And I began to work. Several hours later, while taking a mental break, it hit me like lighting a candle in a dark room. “Remember this morning Tony? You pretty much assigned yourself a death sentence. Who is happy and relaxed if they think they are going to die soon?” Ahhhhh, loose thought, unsnipped! So, I snipped that mutha******* with some good thoughts (that always involve God)!

As incredible as it sounds, it really is that simple. But, when your living the unsatisfied life, it never seems that way. Some folks have been victim to their own unchecked thoughts a lifetime. And worse, some will even argue adamantly that “we don’t need no thought control!” Well, you do need thought control my friend, at least enough control to kick out the occasional intruder. You do realize that just because you thought something doesn’t make it true right? Thoughts, even incredibly believable, strong thoughts are still just thoughts. And when those thoughts are against your best interests; your happiness, they must always be annulled. Failure to check them; failure to address them leads to stolen days and ultimately stolen lives. It’s that serious and it matters that much.

I think, if you are honest with yourself, you will recognize that whenever you let your thoughts “run wild,” or have one of those days when you take a mental vacation, you are never the better off for it. Ever have a weekend where you had absolutely nothing to do and did absolutely nothing? You know that a weekend like that was stressful at best. It’s not that you needed to be busy or overloaded with activity, but rather that you still needed to pay attention to your thoughts and still needed to check them if needed. Ha…you thought you were just feeling bad for being lazy. Lazy in activity maybe, but lazy in watching your thoughts, that’s what got you!

All of us, no matter what has happened in the past; no matter how we thought and what we let go and didn’t let go, can only live in the time period called, now! Now is always all we have folks. So, why not decide right now to pay better attention to those troubling thoughts. Decide that when you are feeling bad, no matter how that shows up, you will take the time to track down those rogue thoughts and handle them as the lies they always were! Your life; your day to day existence is worth that my friends. Contrary to the philosophers you don’t have to give up your happiness for even one minute. Life isn’t full of ups and downs, it’s full of thoughts, checked and unchecked.

Chickety check yourself before you wreck yourself!

Just some good thoughts…

 

 

Decide Already…


2441There is a great conundrum in life that holds you back from being the person you would really like to be. You have these wishes; these dreams for yourself that you fondly imagine, but you are waiting for something to happen in order to bring them to pass. In short you are waiting, waiting, waiting. You’re waiting for the “right” time; the “right” circumstances; the “right” situation. As for me, I fancy myself as a writer. I mean I love to write, right? But finding the “right” time to write, I can’t get right!  Right? Or, I’m waiting for some inspiration or good feelings or some passion. But here’s the thing, inspiration doesn’t start until I decide to write, whether the time is right or not. (Okay, okay I’ll get off the write/right pun…) So…Life is like that my friends. You are waiting on life to happen to you and life is waiting on you to happen to it! You are waiting to finally decide and life is waiting for your final decision. Oh the conundrum!

Yeah I totally get where you are coming from. You want to decide on something, a direction; a future; an end to “that thing,” but you feel like there’s a bunch of stuff to line up before you can decide. Therein lies hidden the catch. The starting point for making anything happen is the decision. The feelings come after the decision and never before! Again, because you have to get this point, the starting point for anything is the decision! You decide fully and the feelings, the inspiration, the desire, all follow in accordance with your decision. So you muse, “Well, how come you call yourself a writer and have already decided you are, yet struggle finding/making time to write?” The simple answer? I really want to be a writer; really love writing; honestly believe I can write, yet haven’t fully decided I’m going to do it yet!  LOL Yes I’m that honest… You see, a fully resolved decision has no plan B, no turn back point! Procrastinating, hoping, wishing, waiting all point towards an un-finalized decision. Make the decision!

You can change, revolutionize, or drastically alter any aspect of your life from your health status to your personal prosperity simply by making an informed, serious, fully resolved decision. Your job isn’t to worry about how it is going to happen or when or where and in what form! Your job is simply to decide. The details of your desire are preceded by your decision. Decision comes first! Okay, let’s just say you are full of fear. It’s easy to be that way because not only is the world a very scary place, but the media does a supreme job of pointing out all possible dangers from what you eat to where you live to even the air you are breathing. Before you realize it you can become afraid of your own shadow. “Frit to death and done note” according to the wisdom of my British Mum. You find yourself living in fear most of every day. You can’t relax. You’re restless and anxious. You live in the perpetual fear of WHEN the other shoe is going to drop with disaster on its heel! (that was funny!) You don’t like the fear. You wish you could stop it and get over it once and for all. And, you can by deciding. Decide by God that you are sick and tired of being afraid and running from what might happen and just acquiesce in the idea that you will deal with “it” when/if “it” comes! And, if you will truly resolve yourself to the idea, you will find that life is ever waiting and conspiring with you to bring it to pass. No fear. It works this way with anything you want to do; want to stop doing etc., etc. For real!

You don’t believe me? Okay, find someone tomorrow and ask them if they could do anything in the world they wanted to do, what would they do? Now, I don’t mean play in the NBA if they are 50…LOL I mean anything they would do “today” if they could. Listen carefully to their answer. Then ask, why don’t you do that now? Then get comfortable because you are going to be there awhile listening to all of the reasons they have to wait; get more money; finish their schooling etc. Notice if you hear any indicator that they have already decided fully and completely. Then come back and read this blog with an increased vigor. The truth about this awesome life you and I are privileged to live is that we can change anything in it if we will only decide to do so.

If your life isn’t turning out the way you planned (and whose does?) then get quiet, do some serious thinking and make some real decisions. Your good life is still waiting on you!

1. Decision

2. Desire

3. Details

4. Deliverance!

Just some good thoughts…

Clearing the Inversion Air…From Your Relationships!


inversionLiving in Utah, we are often subjected to inversions. The inversions occur because we live in a valley and all of the pollutants get trapped in the air making it difficult to breathe. There’s not enough air flow, absent a storm, to remove the gunk from the atmosphere resulting in a serious health risk! So how does this apply to your relationships? Before we proceed, read the above again…

For a relationship to be healthy, you have to be able to talk; talk about anything. And generally, it’s best to talk about the offending situation the moment it blips across your radar screen. You know exactly when that remark or that attitude or that look sent you a message that didn’t agree with your mental harmony system. You know, right? So why would you put that message on the back burner or worse fear the repercussions of bringing it up? In fact, with people you care about and especially those you love, you owe it to yourself and them to always bring it up. Often young married couples, for fear of offending or worse, losing the object of their affections, choose silence, only to discover later that the initial offending issue not only comes back, it comes back with hair on! Bring it up. If it leads to a big argument, so what. It’s better to have the mother of all arguments than to pretend you are okay when you are not okay. It’s better to have the war and come to an agreement than to avoid the war and live amidst the constant skirmishes. Peace often comes after the war, right?

Like an inversion, allowing pollutants to stay in your mental air risks the health of your relationship. Maybe you need a quick storm or two. Maybe. People often seem to think that harmony in a relationship comes from letting things go. Oh sure, there’s nothing wrong with compromise, as compromise helps maintain a relationship, but letting things go is always bad news. Being married for many years now, I can tell you with complete confidence that every issue you bury under the guise of keeping harmony is going to come back with a vengeance and unreasonably all together in one moment of time. That one fight on that one bad day will turn into a floodgate of unresolved issues seeing the opportunity to finally get out of your heart. And like a pressure boiler that takes on more pressure than it can handle, it’s gonna blow boy and blow at catastrophic levels. So take my advice and speak up often.

None of us want to hear the things we have done wrong or hear extolled to us our faults and our failings. None of us look forward to that conversation ever. But always hidden within that conversation, if we have ears to hear, is some gem of truth that speaks to our hearts. In the middle of all that anger and yelling and accusation sits a little minuscule, almost unnoticed piece of truth that alerts our battered heart of some wrong done; some sensitivity walked over; some selfishness we have engaged in. And when we see it; when we finally see it and feel remorse over the thing we have done, healing takes place; a healing that transcends many, many infractions. That my friends, is the point of the discussion, the fight, the argument, or whatever. In a sense you are kicking up the winds that will eventually blow that inversion out of your way so you once again see clearly. How many relationships have come to an end because we didn’t love enough to say what needed to be said? How many breakups could have been avoided if we had the honesty to say what really was.

Now to those of you who have already loved and lost, I offer the following. There’s a bible verse that tells husbands to love their wives and be not bitter again them. Bitterness comes unannounced from a multitude of unresolved hurts be they ever so slight. Bitterness is born of the small many, not of the large few. But once bitterness takes root, it takes on a life of its own and permanently blinds a heart that once could see and feel and experience. In it’s bitter state it is now poisoned and goes on poisoning everything it comes into contact with until it ruins the person completely. Don’t let that be you. Stop rehearsing the past hurts, the wrongs done to you, the pain. Stop carrying around in your memory those unbearable weights. Instead allow yourself to start again; to start over. Resolve in your heart that you will never allow that to happen to you again. If you can still speak those words you have buried for so long, speak them, though the hearer be long past listening or understanding. If not, speak them to God alone and be now done with it, forever… You are worth that.

Inversion air is hard to breathe and puts your health at risk. Poison cannot exist where there is fresh, clean air. Clear the air between yourself and the people who you care about. Speak up about the things you hold most dear. Forgive where forgiveness is needed and be the person you always wanted to be. You can. You should. You owe it to yourself.

Ah what is that I’m feeling? The feeling that comes from finally breathing a breath of clean, pure, fresh air… And it feels so good!

Just some good thoughts…

Fear is a Decision…


imagesWVWZPDZMI know what you are thinking… Man all this dude ever writes about is fear! Well, that’s for good reason. The number one problem you have, recognized or not, is fear. Fear is what holds you back. Fear is the great thwarter of dreams and plans. Fear is the cause of your negative effects. Fear!!! So, indulge me yet again and hear what I’m saying. Fear has ruined more men’s lives than all other things combined. Fear isn’t just that terror that shows up when you see a bear. Fear is often much more subtle than that. It shows up as hesitation and procrastination; anxiety attacks, frustration and even anger. And, you have got to kill it off man, if you want to be happy. So, more stuff to think about, right?

Shocking statement number one – believe it or not, fear is actually a decision. That’s right! It’s not something that just happens and you have to wait it out. Nope! It’s a decision you are making. You (your mind) is presented with some negative variable; some dreadful potentiality, and depending upon how well that threat relates to you as being possible, fear follows. You aren’t really afraid of the mountains blowing up while you climb them, but maybe so if it is a volcanic mountain. So, how fear hits your mind will always be somewhat relatable to you and your experiences. That shows you that something sinister is behind it. Anyway, when you get confronted with that fiery dart of negativity, you have a decision to make. Oh, you don’t feel like you need to make a decision, but you do. You have to decide IF that thing can happen to you. And sadly, the more you mull it over in your mind, the more ground it gains and the more believable the fear becomes.

To win the contest, and it is a contest, you have to believe that whatever is presented is not going to happen to you. This is where God enters the picture. If you believe in God and His love and protection of you, you can dismiss that fear by claiming a promise in God’s Word that counteracts that fear. Side note – every potential fear that you will ever be confronted with has an antidote in God’s Word. Or, if the promise escapes you, you can always pray about it and even ask God for an answer of peace. Without God the world is going to be a very scary place. In fact, absent any belief in God’s ability to do things, you can pretty much be assured of a life full of fear.

There is another aspect of fear we should consider. Those particular fears that have been plaguing you or have been following you around for a lifetime, are the worst types of fear. You can spot them fairly easily because they represent the sole cause for where you struggle the most. It’s not the circumstances, your upbringing, your family, your lack of money or your gene pool. It’s fear! The reason that they are clinging to you like a hair shirt is because they have gained a stronghold in your thinking. Yes, they started as a foothold, but because of your insistence on allowing them entrée, they became a stronghold. In the military when we speak of the enemy having a stronghold, we mean he has a strengthened, fortified position. Well, fear in like fashion, is an enemy (something sinister) that has built a fortified position in your head. Now, hear me out because this might make you angry. The reason that you still have certain fears is because of your ego. (Argghhh – I know!) You are stubbornly clinging to what you think you know is true, because you just know! Even if God Himself told you audibly that it was just a lie, you wouldn’t believe it because you know better! I mean after all, haven’t you heard the news reports? Have you not studied the latest scientific research? Are you asking me to completely disregard the current medical findings?  Yes, yes and no, of course not! What I’m asking you to consider is that there is something, someone far greater in ability than men and what men say. Isn’t it even remotely possible that what the world promotes as true cause and effect isn’t really the cause that produces the effect? (Let that simmer…) So, the reason certain fears defeat you on an epic, chronic level is because you are refusing to let them go. You, my friend, are refusing to change your mind and just decide they aren’t true.

Fear is always a lie; always wrong and always an illusion. The enemy works hard to get you to fear because fear is believing for something to happen in the negative. And believing equals receiving, as the saying goes… Thus, the first step in overcoming fear is to admit you have it. If you catch yourself telling some scenario over and over that you aren’t afraid of it – you are. Once you acknowledge it by being honest with yourself, you are finally on the way to overcoming it. Next find something good that God says concerning it and cleave to that. Every time you think of your situation or condition, claim that promise until the fear is gone. And finally, get sick and tired of being sick and tired. Make a decision! Decide you are over being afraid of ____________, and move ahead. You will find, surprisingly, that once you stop giving “it” airplay, it just sort of dies out. It dies out because it was a lie to begin with!

Now, if you are still saying you have no fear, I hear you… Say on my brother! But a life of peace, tranquility, abundance and health is waiting for you on the other side of that mountain; that mountain made of clouds. Choose life…

Just some good thoughts…

The Energy Hypothesis…


artworks-000050761535-iurtbh-originalI’ve always found it intriguing how different terminology appeals to different people. When I talk about good and evil, eyes glaze over, but when I talk about good energy and bad energy, oh yeahhhh, now we are talking! So, as not to disappoint, this blog is all about energy.  

All of life is energy! All of life requires energy, uses energy and depletes energy. Obviously working at a physical job takes a lot of energy; physical energy.  Yet interestingly, feeling tired after a long day’s work is more about our mental state than it is about the amount of work we have done (I feel like I should say that again!). Thoughts also require energy and give off energy. Just think about that for a moment… When you hang out with certain people you feel as if your energy levels go down (i.e. drained) and certain folks, just the opposite.  Ever felt a bad vibe (vibration-energy)? Negative attitudes and dreary mindsets represent depleted energy levels and as such need to feed on an energy source, you! And while you nod and smile say it is going to be okay; offering your wonderful advice from your heart, down, down you go! Can you see it? That’s not to say you shouldn’t give what you have, but we all recognize the “depleters” who aren’t interested in solutions, but rather, only in energy feeding!

So, here’s thought to ponder… Imagine that God is pure energy; good energy; love energy. And consider that if you can somehow get your mind in tune with that energy, you can become unlimited in your own energy level. You can tap into an energy source that is unlimited. Good energy reportedly (well, this is my hypothesis) vibrates at a higher rate than bad energy. Good thoughts, positive thoughts, expectant thoughts increase your energy level. Have you ever noticed how good thoughts seem to snowball into more and more good thoughts, and good results? Now, while you are still imagining, imagine that negative thoughts; critical thoughts, angry thoughts, lower your energy levels. Have you ever spent a day angry or frustrated? How much energy did you have at the end of that day? Or maybe, have you ever spent a day complaining about how such and such did you wrong; treated you bad, etc., etc.? Wears you out doesn’t it? (I’m tired just writing about it) And now maybe, the ultimate energy suckers of all time; fear and worry! When you are afraid, your energy levels slow to a standstill. Ever spent a night worrying?  How long was that night? Fear indulged brings your life to a standstill.  And no-one, with all of their intellect and analyzation skills, ever solved anything while they were afraid!  No-one! Instead, they foolishly cooperated with the great opposer of life and suffered as a result.

In life, to accomplish and to produce and to make an impact, we need energy; lots and lots of energy! People often claim that they don’t have as much energy because they aren’t as young as they used to be. And to that I would suggest, being an older fellow, older folks don’t think like young people. Older people, after having lived a few years and gained some life experience, are afraid of every damn thing! It’s sort of like living a few extra years provides more and more evidence about what can go wrong! Okay, I digress! Producing in life requires energy. If we are going to accomplish something we are going to face obstacles; opposing forces, and to beat opposing forces necessitates greater energy levels than the obstacle represents. So we have two choices. We can find ways to tap into a greater power source or we can find ways to stop our own energy levels from being depleted.  Wait, I guess we also have a third choice!  We can succumb to the negativity of the world and decide instead to sit at home, watch TV and bitch about the person we could have been! So, assuming you want to win in the game of life, what should you do?

Surprisingly, number one leads to number two. Tapping into that higher level energy source isn’t complex or arduous. Religion is arduous because trying to make imperfect flesh spiritual is impossible! But tapping into the source of all energy and power is as simple as changing your mind. If All-Power is loving and good and positive, then deciding to think lovingly and positively and well puts you on the same wavelength with that power! And as you become committed to love and thinking (just some) good thoughts it becomes harder and harder to think fearful, angry, frustrated thoughts, which happen to suck the very life out of you and your energy levels! Number one leads to number two!

Are you tired of being tired? Are you sick of feeling frustrated or irritated because life isn’t working out how you planned? Why not learn how to tap into the greatest power source of all time, the One that reflects energy to the sun? And while you are at it, why not learn how much your thinking affects your energy and take yourself to task about what you will and will not think about? If you do this you will find that you will have enough energy to do everything you have always wanted to do! In fact, you will have so much good energy that you will be able to reach out and give it to other people! Nothing works like love does; nothing!

Just some good thoughts (energy)…

 

Do the Pebbles in the Brook Make it Sing?


506540766_f3360bfacc I’m sure you’ve heard the expression, “It’s the pebbles in the brook that makes it sing,” right?  In other words, without those little obstacles located throughout the water, we wouldn’t enjoy the sweet sounds of the water flowing down stream.  And while I love the metaphor, (who am I kidding, I love all metaphors! :-)) there’s something in that message we have to keep straight.

I recently read a post on a friend’s Facebook page that basically derided our incessant focus on happiness for a more “realistic” focus on “real life” complete with sadness, difficulties and obstacles.  In other words, without the hardships and negative sides of life we could not be complete and whole.  And that little beauty got me thinking…  I mean, if the pebbles in the brook make it sing, maybe we need the negative side of life in order to enjoy the good?  I mean, how would we know the good, if we didn’t know the bad?  I mean, how can we appreciate our health without experiencing times of sickness and pain?  Hmmm…  Quite a conundrum it seems.

“Don’t get it twisted!”, he exclaims with righteous indignation, spilling his glass of wine!!  Goodness is never dependent upon bad to do its job!  The Yin  and the Yang are a philosophers invention, that while recognizing the duality of life, fails to see the reality behind it.   You see, there’s a gross generalization that is sweeping the earth today, namely that everything that happens comes from the hand of God (or the universe or the earth) etc.  And that generalization gains access to your mind by counting on the fact that you won’t look any deeper than the cliché!  How many times have you read something like, “God is allowing all this evil to come upon me because He knows I’m strong enough to handle it?”  Or, “God must be using this horrible suffering to teach me a greater lesson!”  Egads!  God doesn’t need evil to make you a better person.  God doesn’t use negatives to make us appreciate the positives.  Again, egads!  Wouldn’t that be like me refusing to feed one of my children when they were hungry to make them appreciate the value of having food?  People go to jail for that kind of behavior and yet we say it about God without even flinching.  Can you honestly imagine (think now, don’t just go back to what someone told you before) that a God of pure love would purposely “eff” with you to teach you a lesson?  Maybe give you a little cancer to make you humble?  Or worse, kill the people you love for some mysterious reason you will understand later in the great by and by?  Really?

God says His people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge.  Not understanding the spiritual world leads to a lot of heartache and pain.  There are two spiritual forces at work in the world today, one for good and one for evil.  And it may be a bitter pill to swallow, but God never did anything evil to anyone ever.  He is light and in Him is NO DARKNESS AT ALL!  The reality is that we have all been sold a bill of goods.  We have become trained to expect bad things to happen and thus without knowing open the door to all kinds of calamity.  “Hey, you win some, you lose some.”  “That’s just life.”  “Maybe it was just his time to go.”  What all these things have in common is a vague belief that life was supposed to be some good and some bad.  Some happiness, some suffering.  Yet, God is incapable of evil, so what gives?

In the beginning, God placed a man and woman in paradise.  There was no suffering.  There was no death.  There was no evil.  There was no fear.  Yet when they chose an evil alternative (as folks often do) evil was introduced to the world.  And we are still living under the effects of that evil to this day.  But, there’s a day coming when there will no longer be any such thing as evil, so how can we conclude that good needs evil to function?

You get it?  The pebbles in the brook do make it sing, just as God is able to work with our many obstacles and challenges to help us sing.  But, God doesn’t need the pebbles, He just works with what is!  God would never test you with evil to make you stronger or build your character.  However, He is able to strengthen you against that evil which does build character.  But, don’t get it twisted, He doesn’t need the negatives.  In fact, He would rather we learn without all the pain, but us humans tend to be quite hard-headed (and hard-hearted).  So, He works with what is.  (Isn’t God grand?)

So I’m beseeching you, don’t allow the logic of the world to convince you that suffering is normal; part of life or necessary!  You don’t have to pay the price or go through the bad to get to the good.  You don’t have to accept sickness and disease as normal.  Evil isn’t normal it’s an aberration!  God intended for you to be happy, healthy, prosperous, vibrant and full of life!  He doesn’t need obstacles, harassment and suffering to get you there, He just needs you to believe what He says!

At the end of the day, what makes us whole and complete and entire is love.  ‘Whole things’ aren’t full of cracks and potholes.  And while we may experience the negatives of life, just remember they are never God’s will and if you will look for Him, He will always show you the way back to love; back to peace of mind; back to His perfect wholeness.

Can you hear that gentle splashing of the water on the stones?  Nah, it’s just my wine I spilled earlier… 😉

Just some good thoughts…