Spread a Little Sunshine…


The Corona Virus pandemic has certainly done a fine job of screwing with everyone’s minds in various proportions. Some folks have taken to buying one hundred toilet paper rolls guaranteeing unlimited wiping for the foreseeable future. Others have seen fit to hoard bread and soup and even the spices. Salt anyone? Oddly, bottled water has reached an epic peak as preparation for Armegeddon marches on! Some geographic locales have locked the populace down entirely for fear of an increased spread. Whatever the reactions, ranging from mild annoyance over lost conveniences to abject terror, ye old virus has done a dandy on the minds of Americans. So, what the hell can you do about it?

First, it is important to put things in their proper perspective. Things like this have been happening in the world almost since time began. There have been world wars and rumors of wars. There have been plagues and other health vexations for centuries. There have been catastrophes of unparalleled proportions. The threat of nuclear annihilation only just recently fell out of fashion. In short, there is always something going wrong, somewhere, to some people. It is all a million variations of the same threat, namely fear. Fear has no logical endpoint, because as soon as one fear is overcome, another pops up to take its place. Fear doubles down on bad circumstances and invites more and more disaster. Fear seeks to convince you there is nothing you can do about a situation; severely limits your options and boldly asserts that God is dead! But, God is not dead my friends and He is inifintely bigger than any dreadful thing that rises up against you. Fear is a liar from the father of lies. Remaining in fear you cannot hope to win. Fear is negative outcomes accepted and believed before they come to pass. Fear is truly your only enemy!

In the midst of trying circumstances, you really have only one responsibility. Stop being afraid. Fear not! Fear will have you engaged in all kinds of crazy shit! (toilet paper anyone? – pun intended) Decisions made in fear are not decisions at all, but rather forced behaviors you neither chose or agreed to. Fear is a bully taking advantage of your mind and your human tendency towards futility. I mean, how much control do you really think you have over world events? What could you possibly do in your little reasoning machine to effect any change over what is going on? You cannot wish away negative circumstances, but you can sure as hell refuse to participate any longer. Do you really think that you or a scientist or the medical profession can have any serious, lasting impact over things that are based in the spiritual realm? The only thing that defeats spiritual negativity is spiritual positivity! In other words, instead of furthering the spread of negativity and fear, you must learn how to spread a little sunshine instead. Literally, shed some light on the subject. Be part of the solution. Wake up, stand up and get out there expecting something good to happen. You may not change the world, but you can change how things are going to work out for you. You are the only thing you can control. Instead of falling in line with the other sheep heading towards the cliff, turn around. Go the other way. Decide, “not me boy” and get out there and live.

It has been my experience that God can turn anything around if enough people can get behind that notion. I’m quite sure God is very familiar with what is going on right now. I’m also sure He loves your loved ones at least as much as you do. If you got sick, I’m quite sure He could heal you. Nothing that ever happens comes as a surprise to God. He has foreknowledge which means He already knows. And because He knows, He also has a solution for you. Your job is not to try and wrangle with fear, but instead trust God and find the solution. The alternative is almost certain defeat. God is infinitely bigger than anything you will ever come up against! Trusting God means making a decision to stop being afraid. Then, in response to that, let that shit go Elsa! (Peloton reference) Walk away from it. Let it go! Don’t worry yourself over it for another second. If there is nothing God can do when faced with a world pandemic, He certainly wouldn’t be much of a God, would He? Well, there is something He can do, but you have to learn to trust Him and let Him do it! Start spreading a little sunshine…

This too will pass. One day you will look back on this time and wonder how you let it get you so shook up. But, you will have wasted a lot of time in churning and stressing over something you had no control over. If you think about; I mean really consider it, nothing you have ever feared was ever within your realm of control. At some point, hopefully, you decided to let it go. Trusting God is always about letting it go. Just as you have enjoyed a beautiful day basking in the sunshine, put that sunshine on in your mind today. Inject some light into your thinking. Stop reasoning with potential catastrophes and walk in the light. Walk in the sunshine feeling the warmth of the One that invented sunshine. There’s a reason sunny days make you feel so happy. It is God, don’t you see it? It is God enlightening and uplifting your life. Sure, we may have some hardships to endure, but just as there are rains and storms in life, the sun always comes back out. It has to…

I, like you, am not sure what lies ahead. I have also considered economic collapse, sickness and mass misery in the days ahead. But, I haven’t considered it for very long! I decided I am going to continue spreading the sunshine, no matter how dark it gets, because my life isn’t based on what things look like, but rather on the promises of God. You too, my friend, can spread the sunshine. Help somebody else out and get your mind off yourself. Bless people, love people and remember God is bigger, much, much bigger… There will always be a way out for us. Believe that and spread a little sunshine instead…

Just some good thoughts…

Inner Disturbances…


A jogger runs on a sunny morning on Sanata Monica Beach, California.

Having just traveled back from beautiful, warm southern California, I can certainly appreciate the blessing and reverie that accompanies a calm, sunny day with absolutely no weather disturbances. Far less frequently perhaps, I’ve been a part of turbulent storms deluged with rain, howling winds and general upset feelings of turmoil and unrest. During storms the accepted notion is to get through the disturbed weather and back to the calm; the sooner, the better. Our ideal state of mind is also found in peaceful, pleasant warmth of thought and as such it is our duty to track down and eliminate the sources of disturbance and turbulence that seek to assault us day by day…

You might be surprised to learn that we all have a mental environment that we maintain day by day. Our mental environment might be best represented by the weather. Our mental weather, like physical weather, is not a permanent condition but rather something that ebbs and flows depending upon where we live (mentally). However, unlike the physical weather, we have complete control over our mental weather no matter what is going on around us. The trouble is that many of you have lived in the bad weather for so long that you have resigned yourself to it being considered “normal.” You’ve accepted it like a thunderstorm and concluded it is just a part of life. You believe it is expected as a human to have persistent anxiety and perpetual worries blowing your mind around like chance wind gusts! Instead of getting to the bottom of the disturbances, you wait and wait for the sun to come back out or produce some artificial sunlight through chemicals and other distractions. You are so disturbed you are no longer aware you are disturbed.

Think back to the times when your mind wasn’t a helter-skelter of confusing thoughts and unusual sensations. Try to recall when you didn’t rashly assume your job was to think your way out of looming disasters, thereby eliminating the need for constant fret and worry. Picture yourself fondly consumed in the moment with no particular inclination to find the surreptitious beast looming behind every corner seeking to bring you woe. Do you remember? You may have been a child or even perhaps a young adult. In some cases you might have even been in middle age yet delightfully caught up in some combination of sublime conditions. No matter the time period, the age or the conditions, those times of sun-drenched days came around and persisted because you were making proper use of your mind. There should be nothing associated with adulthood that requires living amidst perpetual shitty weather! Boiling up with worry, anxiety and fear are not traits associated with maturity or heightened awareness of the pitfalls of life. They are instead just that…worry, anxiety and fear! And like any good student you learned their ways and adopted them for yourself. Someone or something sold you tornadoes and hurricanes so you might be satisfied with thunderstorms and gale force winds, while calm, blessed sunshine was not listed as an option.

The good news is that your weather forecast is entirely changeable dependent upon how serious you are about getting above the clouds. You can learn, no matter what has assailed you in the past, to develop a calm, peaceful, settled mind and experience a clarity that formerly eluded you. However, you, similar to your dealings with the physical weather, aren’t going to be able to do this on your own. You aren’t going to brace yourself up by your own bootstraps and get the job done. Do you know why? Because your limited, finite, senses logic is not capable of getting the job done. Welcome to humanity! The slippery tricks that planted the storm clouds in your noggin’, planted them there based on what you do not know! Instead, if you want to get to the sunshine, the sweet repose, the perfect day, it is necessary for you to get back to the Source of light and sunshine directly. I don’t know what it is about people that compels them to figure everything out on their own. Remember when you knew you didn’t know? How sweet that time was…

Your heartfelt conversation with the One that invented thinking is as simple as, “Lord, I read a thing today that said I didn’t have to live with all this turbulence in my head. (You know how I hate turbulence!) Help me to get back to that sweet place and show me how to do it!” With God, it never needs be any more complicated than that. You’ll discover a fantastic thing when you finally figure out how hard you have been making everything and just ask for help. Children have the good sense not to accept mental disturbances and on those rare occasions when they are troubled, they are going to let you know about it fairly quickly. You see, they are still children of the sunshine!

Today is the day to get your head to California! Now is the time to seek something better for yourself. Stop succumbing to the fear and terror that ravages the planet and your mind. Quit accepting anxiety as a normal condition and the medications that go with it. Believe to experience life as you were intended to experience it. Get to that place because that place exists and it’s not reserved for those who do anything other than believe! Ask, believe and see…

When confronted with the storms of life declare, “Peace be still…” and then go back to sleep… ūüėČ

 

Living in the Sun…


SunshineForestFall in Utah is perhaps my favorite time of the year. The sun is shining, but unlike the summer, the sun is sort of lowering and producing shadows. The grass looks greener, the mountains look more brown, everything just looks so wonderful! Bliss… So,¬†I’ve learned over the years that God¬†often teaches us valuable lessons in the physical realm that apply most vividly to the mental and the spiritual. With that in mind, so I write…

Our mind has been compared to a garden and we have the glorious privilege of choosing the environment in which it grows (or doesn’t grow…). Sunny thoughts encourage it to thrive and produce a bountiful harvest. Dark, negative thoughts choke the life out of it. But glory hallelujah, we decide! So have you ever wondered why, when we get to choose our thoughts, we would ever choose darkness? Why, when we cast the final vote, would we ever pick dark thoughts?? I know, I know, ¬†mentally you are challenging¬†me right now. After all, life isn’t always positive, is it? Bad stuff threatens and some times actually happens. The world is negative; the Internet is negative; the people surrounding you might be negative. Darkness literally surrounds¬†us. All of this is true, but we don’t have to acquiesce to it unless we choose to.

Hey, I’m a person just like you are. I don’t live in a fantasy land and am oh so aware of the challenges of life. I would be lying if I said otherwise. I feel pain, discouragement and defeat just like you do. I know where you are coming from. But here’s something you need to¬†consider deeply. Maybe, just maybe you and I have been trained in the ways of the world. Maybe we have been unknowingly practicing error for so long that it just feels natural now. Maybe we simply assumed that everyone lives this way and it is just part of being a human being. Maybe? Have you ever learned how to do something incorrectly like swinging a golf club or shooting a basketball or typing with two fingers (which I am doing as we speak)? If so, you know how difficult it is to retrain your mind to do it a different way. You have to consciously work at it! It is hard work; very hard work! But amazingly on those rare occasions when you do it properly (thinking of golf swings now) how effortless it feels. There it is man! Effortless and simple¬†is right, arduous and complicated is wrong. How many times have you heard that life is complicated? Well it is, but only because we have been trying to grow flowers in an unlit closet.

Now, back to what you habitually think. Imagine this scenario… Life is going well; you are happy and good things are happening. Tadaaaaa, the sun is shining! Then you pause to think about it and suddenly you find yourself wondering what could go wrong and just when it is going to happen. Enter the clouds and goodbye happy times. Here’s another… You go to the doctor because something hurts. You aren’t sure why and you go to get some help. Since you don’t know what is going on, you now have two choices about what you are going to think. Which thoughts did YOU choose? You chose terminal disease didn’t you? You see, you have been trained to think that way. It isn’t reality you are considering, it is a choice you are making. And while that choice is ongoing, you spend hours and days worrying about “your reality” that isn’t even reality. A week later, after the labs come back, your diagnosis is a minor infection and you are prescribed some antibiotics. You get better, but you can never get that week back you wasted in the shadows. Play that scenario out much longer and you end up never being able to get back the last twenty years you lived mired in fear. Do some folks get diagnosed with terminal diseases? Sure they do. Bad stuff can still happen. But, you my friend can greatly influence what happens by what you choose to think and thus believe.

This might sound silly to you, but I would rather live 50 years expecting the best and being surprised by a bad thing happening than live every day in fear of that one bad thing happening. To go one step further, in the spiritual realm there are also two choices. One is the eternal sunshine and one is a temporary darkness. How you think; what you think; what you choose decides which spiritual influence gains access to your life. Living in a perpetual cloud of negativity, knowingly or unknowingly, introduces you to a world where tragedy and suffering are the norm. Living in the sunshine doesn’t guarantee it won’t ever rain or storm, but when it does you’re still connected to the Source that always makes light shine out of darkness! And, along the way, you are going to¬†get a helluva good tan and produce a bumper crop!

Please make up your mind today that you are going to step out of the shadows and into the eternal sunshine. Start now. Take your mind (get it..your mind) to task and get it into the light. Don’t do it alone though. Talk to the One that worked in me to write this and ask some questions; lots of questions. He will show you what to do in specifics. Heck, He tells me and I’m nowhere near as good as you! ūüėČ

There’s nothing comparable to living life in the sun… Nothing!

Just some good, sunny thoughts!