The Rebel With a Cause Now a Hero!

I was thinking about the Martin Luther King holiday and at what an amazing significant holiday that it is!  I have witnessed through the years the direct results of the great sacrifice that this one man-made through his fight for civil rights movement that means so very much to each one of us today!

Dr. King had a dream, he had what many at that time seemed to be an impossible dream  for it to become a reality.  He peacefully carried out his mission and was met with violence by those who were fighting against that very dream yet through his death he ended up being the victor!

How many times throughout history  a simple truth gets pushed down, persecuted, squelched only in the end to grow ever more in strength and those who previously were accused of being the betrayers end up living on to become great leaders of causes and heroes of humanity.

When I think about this man and the changes that he has helped to bring about in this country, it gives me hope once again that there will be a better day, we will prevail we will succeed in getting through these tough days, as long as we hold onto the dream, and we push forward in faith knowing that victory is assured! I have a dream!

How Blessed Can One Be?

“The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings.”–Eric Hoffer

I count myself to be very blessed!  I am just so very thankful for what I have, and it isn’t really all that much if you were to measure it in wealth or in possessions.  It would be near impossible to describe to you the joy that I feel to have wonderful kids and now adorable grandchildren that you can enjoy watching grow and progress!  What greater joy can there be really?  I find it extremely exhilarating to be able to hold in my arms an adorable child, embrace a son or a daughter that you can be there for in their time of need.

Recently time has been a bit tight for me to fit in all that I would think necessary to do and so I have felt a bit troubled and despondent of the fact that I have not had the time to do all that I deem necessary.  This evening I stopped and was thinking about this and I came to the conclusion that it is a huge waste of energy to get all down about such a trivial thing and I started to count my blessings!

For one I have a great family, another is that I have amazing friends who have always been there for me.  And then I have you!  Yes, you who have taken the time to stop by and read this post.  You have no idea how much you mean to me and anyone else that you may have blessed by visiting them even for just a moment!  You mean so much to so very many people who you have no idea at all how important you are.  Yes you, so stop looking around trying to figure out who you are..it’s you!

I am blessed because of you!  So allow me to express my appreciation to you for just being you! Thank you!

Do You Feed Your Body But Starve Your Soul?

“Treat your body like a temple, not a woodshed. The mind and body work together. Your body needs to be a good support system for the mind and spirit. If you take good care of it, your body can take you wherever you want to go, with the power and strength and energy and vitality you will need to get there.” –Jim Rohn

Most of us wouldn’t think about skipping meals if we don’t absolutely have to for one reason or the other.  When it is meal time we are pretty consistent with stopping whatever activity we are involved in to go and feed our bodies. It is pretty simple, our stomach sends a message to our brain and lets it know that it really would like to have something to eat!  An area that we can tend to be weak in is feeding our souls or minds with the proper frequency and diet.

Our mind is always seeking input, sort of like E.T. it is always sending the message “input..more input”.  Much of what we “put in” will have a direct effect on us and our spirit just as maintaining a proper balanced diet when we eat our physical food.  The more you eat “junk food” the more you begin to notice the effect that it has on your body.  You begin to get sluggish, despondent and the more noticeable consequence is when you begin to gain unwanted weight. We tend to gravitate towards junk food or fast food out of “convenience” because we simply do not have the material time available to stop and eat a more healthy meal…or so we think.

At the end of a long day, much the same as the convenience of stopping for a fast bite, we just want to relax and spend some time “chilling”.  Often this means sitting in front of the boob tube and taking in what ever happens to showing at the time.  Some are more “careful” and watch the news faithfully, several times a day.  This may seem important, but the only problem with this is that the “news” that is shared is most often chuck full of negative stories that will end up running through our minds once we lay down to “rest” in preparation for the next challenging day!  Just as the junk food will begin sending all that unwanted nutrition-void contents through your bloodstream!

It is VERY important to take into consideration what you fed your mind, and in particular before you lay down to take your rest or sleep at night.  Your mind will continue to work while you are asleep, and what you have fed your soul will eventually begin pouring forth from your mouth, through your actions, in your attitude and overall perspective on life!  You have heard the expression “you are what you read”, well this is absolutely true, and not only, you are also what you watch, and what you hear as it all gets absorbed into the fiber of your being!

So be mindful not only of your physical diet which, if you are, you will be able to remain healthy physically.  But be just as mindful of what you feed your soul in order to remain healthy mentally and spiritually! Your body usually follows where your mind is going, so it may even be more important to watch what you put into your head.  Input is very necessary for your mind just as food is for your body, in both cases you need to pay attention to what you allow in!

Do you feed your body and soul with good balanced and healthy diet?

When Push Comes To Shove

When push comes to shove, it ain’t the science that’s going to lift you up-it’s the belief, the spiritual side of life, that’s going to lift you up, no matter what religion you are.–Kristie Alley

Have you had situations in your lifetime that something comes up, an emergency. a tough bend in the road, something that surely if you had the choice you would certainly choose not to do?  And then, out of nowhere, certainly not within you, you got the strength to get though it all despite you not having the strength to deal with it at all!  I know I have, many times, and some of you might even say, “yeah everyday that I wake up to go to work this very thing happens!”  Ha!

There certainly do come times in our lives that we, within ourselves are simply not able to handle what comes our way!  An accident happens, you are needed to jump in and lend a hand but you know that you are simply unable to stomach having to perform emergency care, but then you make it through the moment.  All the mommies in the world probably have tons of stories like this, having raised kids, things don’t always go smooth when around kids, they have this knack for getting into trouble and tight spots and are often in need assistance!

We are actually all totally capable of doing much more than we might personally believe to have the faith for, but when the time comes, when push comes to shove, there is this extraordinary strength that kicks in just in the nick of time! It is the “mind over matter” the “power for the hour”, and most of us know it has to do with faith in something greater than ourselves!

We often find ourselves in situations that could use that extra bit of faith to get us through it all, but we fail to call on that strength from within, we tend instead to give in to our fears and will look at the circumstances and succumb to defeat! The problem lies in thinking too much about something and talking ourselves right out of having the faith.  The situations that I mentioned above are things that happen when there is no time to think, you just have to act and strange as it may be, it is as though you have grown wings to fly!

This strength or faith, is like a muscle that, if you don’t exercise it, if you fail to use it regularly, you will not have the strength you need on a daily basis.  It is always there, just as the muscles in your arms are there, but they are only as strong as you will condition them to be, and to condition them, you will need to work them….regularly.

We don’t need to wait for an emergency to use them and enjoy the benefit of flying higher, we can do that more often.  This is when you have to believe that it is possible.  Because if you believe that something is possible, than for you it IS possible.  Nothing and no one can convince you to the contrary!  Don’t wait until push comes to shove! Just jump!

Have you experienced things in your life that you had previously thought impossible, but when the time came you were surprised of what you could do?

The Moody Blues

It is hardly possible to build anything if frustration, bitterness and a mood of helplessness prevail.–Lech Walesa

We are all different as human beings but at times we can be different ourselves at different times depending on the mood we are in!  Our mood can affect how we perceive things and what opinion we might have about a movie, a meal, a conversation or the even the political situation.  From one day to the next you can feel a certain way about life in general, go to bed and wake up the next day and have a totally different outlook on life!  There are circumstances and even the weather that can affect how we react to things as well, so it can sometimes be hard to say what we truly feel about certain things without giving it a little time to sink in and consider it more thoroughly, even our feelings for another person.

There have been times that I have watched what to some was a “funny movie” and I was not really in the mood when I turned the DVR on to watch the same movie perhaps a few days later.  To my son it was totally hilarious, to me by the time I watched it, in the mood I was in, it was utter foolishness and not funny at all.  Then time would go by, and I stumble upon the same movie and am in a less serious mood and this time around it had me rolling on the floor.

Now that we are entering into the winter months, and in the area where we live it is known for the fog that sets in for days on end.  It is cold, damp and what I consider miserable and I get flash backs of the time I lived with a house without the proper heating and I almost immediately have a sense of hopelessness and despair!  Others might feel the cool air and they are immediately reminded about the fun they had on a skiing trip in Colorado and they are immediately inspired!  We are all susceptible to mood swings and to being affected by our surroundings, it is not just women who are subject to mood swings.

The problem is, when we are dealing with life changing situations like the one we are all now facing with a multitude of problems, if we lack that sense of hopefulness, and allow ourselves to be affected by our current mood, it could cause us to make some big mistakes!  In order to make progress, it is all important to take charge of your feelings and emotions and have the ability to see things as they really are, not from the perspective of our current mood.

The current economical turmoil and political instability in many parts of the world could cause many people a sense of despair!  This is when it is important to have faith, faith in seeing something that is not there, at least not yet!  At times the reality is not that pretty, but if you are able to see things through the eyes of faith, what they could become, then you can have the confidence that it will all work out in the end!  The stock market either thrives on faith, or drops on the lack thereof.  It is really a matter of whether or note investors have confidence in its future or if they have a doubt, that is what makes it fluctuate!  Even the economy has its “mood swings”!

Is it hard for you to control your mood?  When you are in a “good mood” doesn’t everything, even your “problems” take on a different dimension?

Accepting Differences–Without Forcing Them On Others!

The end result of your life here on earth will always be the sum total of the choices you made while you were here.”–Author Unknown

For the record, yes I do believe in God, and I believe that He has placed us here on earth to make choices, choices that we alone can make and that even He has limited Himself in such a way to allow us to choose.  I also believe that with every choice that we make in life that we will then be left to live with the consequences of those choices and that what might be OK for one person does not necessarily mean it is for another.  There are so many differences between us, and thank God for that, there is male, female, tall, short, blonde, brunette, dark skin, light skin, the list is too long to enumerate here and I lack the time.  Well in the end there is just about every flavor on earth to satisfy everyone, if we just learn to accept them.

We are blessed with what I will call here “the majesty of choice”, a gift given us at birth that no one can take away from us but ourselves through our own choice to relinquish it according to our own will (or unless it is taken from us through some act of war).  There are choices that we make that are “good” choices that will bring us to greater and more wonderful things in our lives, as there are “poor” choices that may bring us to hard places and difficulties that, had we chosen the other way, perhaps things would have ended up better.  If you are able to discover this on your own, without outside interference, then you will be convinced beyond any shadow of doubt whether your choice was the better of choices. But “a man convinced against his will, will remain of the same opinion still”  In other words, if a man is coerced into believing something, or there is an attempt to push him to believe in a certain way, he will never be totally convinced until he personally chooses of his own volition!

We live in a society that is so diverse at this point that there is no way that you can place boundaries where one person is totally wrong and the other is completely right in all his ways.  If we cannot learn to accept others for who they are, instead of insisting that they be just like us, then we can move forward in unity despite our differences.  There are so many things that others do or lifestyles that others have chosen that I do not agree with, but it doesn’t give me license to condemn them or to criticize. I just choose to agree to disagree.

What I have a hard time with is when people make personal choices, and want to be accepted for who they are, but then they go beyond seeking acceptance and begin to impose their lifestyle on others.  Take for example homosexuality.  I do not agree with it, but I am willing to accept homosexuals for their personal choices and if they are happy with their choice, then fine.  But what I am not in agreement with is how their cause has not stopped at acceptance only of their personal lifestyle, but it has gone way beyond to the point in the attempt to rewrite how we should live our lives as a society.  Schools as early as kindergartens have felt it necessary to advertising that they are “gender neutral” which begins to make subtle suggestions in the minds of impressionable children that “maybe” they are homosexual.  To me that is way overboard and is exactly the same of what they accuse the “hardline religious” for being dogmatic. It is an example of the proverbial pot calling the kettle black.

As for my sexuality and what goes on in my bedroom it is NOYB as for your sexuality, it is NOMB, and I am perfectly fine with that, so what I am trying to say is, respect, and be respected.  Live and let live, because at the end of the day, we have to decide for ourselves.  So as for the myriad of choices that we make in our lives, be they religious, sexual, careers, habits, free time, etc.., they are all personal choices and should never stand in the way of our walking hand in hand as people, or a nation.  And please, do not force your choices on others, share how you feel, then leave room for others to choose on their own.

This is just one example, that I feel strongly about and it is not meant to attack homosexuals, but rather to suggest to anyone who has chosen a certain lifestyle, live it for yourself, share with who voluntarily wishes to do the same, just don’t push it on others who do not agree.  Agree to disagree, join hands and look for common ground.

As usual, your thoughts are always welcome.

All Smoke And No Fire?

“There may be a great fire in our soul, yet no one ever comes to warm himself at it, and the passers-by see only a wisp of smoke.” –Vincent Van Gogh

To have fire you must have a spark, in order for it to become a hot and flaming fire, all of the conditions have to be just right.  A good mixture of oxygen set at just the right quantity will help to feed the flame and keep it burning bright and hot which helps eliminate smoke.  Same thing goes for an idea or an inspiration.  They come as a spark that potentially could light into a fire, but if not fed a good dose of oxygen, they can tend to only produce an ugly smoke.

There are different kinds of fires, there is the good fire that we use on a daily basis to cook and to heat our homes in the colder months of the year, and there are the bad fires that go out of control and burn down, damage and destroy.  It isn’t something that you want to play with but rather it is important to use with caution and learn to harness it once you get it going!  There was once a saying: “If you get on fire people will come to see you burn!” Naturally used as a metaphor, if you get inspired and do something exciting, it will draw people towards you to want to join in.

I know a few people who are just full of great ideas, or at lest they truly seem great.  They have more ideas than a dog has fleas, but they end up just talking about them and don’t get around to actually doing something with them.  This is like the match that starts off great, gets lit but then because of a lack of oxygen it goes out and only produces smoke.  Smoke can be annoying and tends to repel rather than attract.  Another problem that can arise is when you light the match and then too much oxygen is thrown on it in the form of wind and it gets blown out.

Back to people with great ideas, which one are you.  Do you have ideas but then don’t put feet to them to at least see if they might produce a good fire to warm yourself and others? Or do you have a great idea and start talking about how you are going to do this that or the other, but then end up doing nothing?  Then the last problem, do you have a great idea, but then allow yourself to be discouraged from even trying because everyone around you is blowing out the flame of your enthusiasm?

Don’t be all smoke and no fire! Don’t only talk about what you are going to do, or be overly cautious that your enthusiasm runs out and you are left smoldering instead of burning.  And do not allow others to discourage you through their doubts to the point they, with all their good intentions, end up blowing out the flame!  Take that idea, get it burning bright and hot and use it to change the world, or at least the world around you!

Believing is Seeing!

“By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.”–Franz Kafka

The act of believing is so powerful and most of us think we need to see something or touch something before we believe, that is like putting the cart before the horse. If everyone were to have had this philosophy, we would still be using horses as our main means of transport.  We would still have to carrier our messages on pieces of paper delivered by a reliable person. We would still be living in the dark ages!  Thanks to a great number of people who simply believed in what they were doing, perused it with a passion and ignored those who ridiculed them, we are blessed to have some many new and revolutionary ways to travel, communicate, and live more conveniently due to their perseverance and faith.

The most exciting thing about this is that we are all privy to this same power that can catapult us into being successful and achieving our goals and dreams! There are a lot of hurdles along the way once you take the road of faith. There are a series of steps that you need to take in order for everything to fall in place. Step 1, begin to desire something with you whole heart! Step 2, believe that you can obtain or achieve what you have desired! Step 3, make specific goals and plans with specific dates within which you plan to achieve your desire, be sure to write this down on paper and read it each morning when you wake up. Step 4, stay true to your plan, take action accordingly!  Step 5,  do NOT allow the poison of doubt and discouragement play any role in what you set out to do. Remember it is YOU who has to have the faith for what you want, it is YOU who have to achieve the goal and therefore you will need to guard yourself from comments from others that might discourage you in any way!

Belief has a tremendous power so much so that you can achieve your greatest dreams. Have you heard of Steven Spielberg?  Of course you have, one of the most successful movies directors of our time. He wanted so much to be a director since he was a child having filmed different short films with his little camera.  But how he got into Universal Studio is a classic! First he went on a guided tour as many of us have done to the studio.  He left the group whilst there, and after his stay he left the gate making certain to wave at the guard.  He continued to return through the same entrance each day for three months always waving and greeting the guards and he even located a vacant office that he listed himself under.  He became acquainted with the head of TV production Mr. Sid Sheinburg and showed him his work that he had produced as a college student the Sugar-land Express.  He so impressed Sheinburg that he was then hired at the studio but his true breakthrough came a year later when he was able to convince all that he was the best guy to direct the Movie series Jaws. Talk of perseverance!  For more inspirational stories and for a real life changing reading, I highly recommend that you get the book “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill

Do you need an important title first…no, do you need a great diploma…not necessarily..  you need great faith and determination, and the guts to see it through!  Go for your dream, don’t let anyone get in your way, befriend those who can be an encouragement to you!

 

What is Faith?

I am now reading and re-reading an amazing and very well-known book by Napoleon Hill called “Think and Grow Rich” (which I highly recommend) in which he shares the success stories of many a great and successful person who have acquired wealth by initially have a great desire to accomplish what they wanted in life.  I am a firm believer in the power of faith, desire or will power or whatever you might wish to call it.  It is also the power of positive thinking, reminding yourself that you are going to make it, that you can make it will certainly help you to eventually “make it”.  In essence, this is a natural law of nature itself, implanted here by God Himself.  It is my personal belief that we weren’t just randomly thrown here on planet earth to simply exist but rather to learn all that we can and apply certain natural laws laid out there ever since the beginning of time. By following these laws of nature we open the door to great success as if possessing a key.  Throughout his book, Napoleon repeats the word desire  sharing the power that it has.  The numerous examples that he wrote about of having a desire to achieve or obtain something, the person in question was able to receive it.  Desire is what moves us emotionally to do something about obtaining, to be able to obtain we have to believe that somehow we are going to be able to receive.  It is having faith, or believing beyond a shadow of a doubt.

The Bible gives us a comprehensive definition of what faith is in Hebrews 1 the first verse: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”  Isn’t that amazing, it depicts faith as something that is there, a substance, a tangible goal or a reality and then it goes on to explain that this substance that is evidence of our desired possession that is not yet seen.  It takes an awful lot of courage to reach out and grab something that is not visibly there to grab a hold of.  However, many people tend to stumble on this point by casting doubt on things that they cannot see, saying “I don’t believe in anything that I cannot see”.  This is a bit silly though as there are an awful lot of things that are not visible but they do exist!  Who has seen electricity? Yet it is a power that obviously works and we use it all of the time every day of our lives.  Who can see the wind? Likewise just as electricity, it cannot be seen, however it’s effect we can see in it’s mighty power.

One aspect that I would like to point out though about faith and I will share here another scripture from the Bible that tends to get ignored and that is just as important to this whole achievement and desire and obtaining methodology.  It is in the book James chapter 2 verse 26: “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.In yet another letter in the book of James chapter 2 verse 18  it says “ yea a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works; shoe thy faith without thy works, and I will show thee my faith by my works” There are a lot of Christians and people of other faiths that tend to believe that faith on it’s own is sufficient and that if they just believe that they will receive something that it will just happen.  Well, while it is great and all important to have “faith” it is equally as important to have works as well by putting your faith into action.  A desire, as Napoleon repeats is a wonderful emotion that can motivate us to get up and do something about this desire.  We want something so bad that we will make the necessary sacrifices in order to obtain it.  By taking action towards achieving something, we demonstrating that we indeed believe that we are capable of obtaining it.

Even Jesus Himself in each miracle that he performed asked his disciples to take action, and then He took over to help do what thy were unable to do. When He raised Lazarus from the dead he ordered his disciples “take ye away the stone” from his grave.  Of course they thought this to be a silly thing to do since he had been dead for a while at that point and were concerned for the stench that such a labor would have rewarded them with, and yet through their faith by their works they went ahead to remove the stone. Now if He is omnipotent and capable of raising him from the dead, why did he ask his disciples to move the stone, he could have easily just told it to move Himself?  In John chapter 9 He healed the blind man, and this took great faith on this man’s behalf, he bends over gets dirt off the ground and spits on it, then after this rather distasteful ceremony he asks the man to go wash his eyes of in the pool of Siloam, one of the dirtiest pools around! Again it took action on behalf of this man, and an incredible belief to even listen to Jesus and do what he asked of him.

All throughout the scriptures in the Bible there are conditions that were in place, and if you would like to make an interesting study on this, check out the many references that exist with the words if and then. Here are a couple: Exodus 19:5 If you will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me above all people. for all the earthe is Mine”.   Deuteronomy 19:9 “If thou shalt keep all these commandments to do them, which I command thee this day, to love the Lord they God, and to walk ever in His ways; then shalt thous add three cities, more for thee, besides these three.”

It is my personal conviction that, in order to get reap, you have to sow, in order the earn you have to give, in order to gain you have spend.  You have to take action, that in itself is an action of faith.  How many great business men have taken great risk in investing their money in what ever they have invested in, they had to believe that there was going to be a return.  The farmer, sows the seed, then he has to wait a season to then reap the benefits of his labor. So then, to only sit around praying waiting for the great harvest without sowing first the seed, without making the effort, without “rolling the stone away”, may not be the best course of action!

So, faith is a very important, as without faith we would probably not bother getting out of bed in the morning, it should move you to get moving… to take action, the then you know that through your action you will reap the results of your labor! It is one of the natural laws of science, somewhat as the theory of relativity which Einstein explains.  It is natural, it God created, it is totally functional it is reality, it is the truth, abide by it and you will see that it works!