The way we see other people is often a reflection of how we see ourselves.
In fact, it is our most extreme reactions to other people that are often the most revealing. When we are intensely jealous of someone to the point of hatred, there is usually a reason. When we cannot stop comparing ourselves to someone else, there is usually a reason.
That reason is that there is something about them, or their lives, that we secretly aspire to have.
We might deny it, we might try to hide it, we might villainize them and victimize ourselves in order to feel better about it.
But in the end, when we are totally preoccupied about who is better than us, more attractive than us, more successful than us, or happier than us, it is always because there is a huge, gaping hole within us that we do not yet know how to fill.
We fill it with action.
We fill it by showing up.
We fill it by no longer neglecting our true desires and our deep needs.
We fill it by going after the life we really want.
We fill it by rising to the challenge, adapting to the competition, and becoming the absolute best version of ourselves.
Do you know what happens when you start showing up fully in your own life? You stop caring about who might be better than you.
When you think you look the best you possibly can, you stop caring that someone might look better. When you think you are doing the best you possibly can, you stop caring that someone might do better. When you think you are being the best you possibly can, you stop caring that someone might be better.
That insecurity almost always comes from our subconscious awareness that we are not doing all that we are capable of, and that person is. Instead of pointing out our own fault, we project it onto them, shaming, belittling, or trying to make them seem to be less than what they are.
This is not effective.
This does not do anything but make us seem petty and small.
Throwing shade at someone else’s light does not make you shine brighter, it only reveals the darkness within you.
The truth is that you don’t actually want to be better than other people, you just want to feel like you are enough, and you are never going to feel like you are enough if you aren’t showing up and trying to do what you truly want to do.
Worthiness is both something we are born with, and yet, something we must prove to ourselves over time. Nobody wakes up with profound confidence, it is something they build by getting out into the world and showing themselves that they are capable of what they desire.
The same is true here.
Someone else’s beauty does not make you less beautiful, someone else’s success does not make you less successful, someone else’s well being does not make you less healthy.
There is enough shine for everyone, there is enough success for everyone, there is enough goodness for everyone.
Instead of fighting to have someone else’s taken away, it’s time to start chasing your own.
When you really start showing up as the person you want to be, you’ll never again fear that you aren’t measuring up to someone else’s standard, because you’re measuring up to your own — and that’s all you really want anyway.
This is a guest post from Briana Weist.
The value of a smile is so priceless, yet it is the cheapest, easiest, most rewarding and most sincere gift to anyone that crosses your path.
A smile makes a person’s day, anybody’s day, even a stranger’s day. A smile is infectious. Start infecting people with your smile today.
A smile is nature’s best antidote for discouragement. It brings rest to the weary, sunshine to those who are sad, and hope to those who are hopeless and defeated.
A smile is so valuable that it can’t be bought, begged, borrowed, or taken away against your will. You have to be willing to give a smile away before it can do anyone else any good.
So if someone is too tired/ grumpy to flash you a smile, let him have one of yours anyway. Nobody needs a smile as much as the person who has none to give.
Image credit: Pinterest
You can’t avoid suffering. You can’t avoid pain. It’s a given and life becomes so much easier when we accept that reality.
The more you care about someone, the more you’ll hurt when they let you down. The more you’re passionate about something, the more heartbroken you will be when you lose it.
Ironically, the things that bring us joy are also the things that bring us pain. The people we love are also the people who break our hearts and that’s the essence of life.
You won’t find something you love given to you freely without an ounce of pain or suffering. The journey to happiness and love is full of suffering and pain. You won’t fall in love with someone until you’ve seen them at their worst, learned how to forgive them and accept their difficulties.
Ultimately, we’re only fooling ourselves when we say that the things we love shouldn’t make us suffer but they do. I love my job but I lose sleep at night when I mess up and I can’t forgive myself for the smallest errors because I actually care about my performance.
I’m more sensitive when I have feelings for someone and more likely to take their actions personally. I love my friends but it hurts when we don’t talk as much or lose touch because of our responsibilities.
While the level of suffering is not the same for each, it’s still suffering but to me, it’s better than suffering at a job I hate or suffering because I’m with someone I don’t adore or suffering because I have no friends. In this case, I’m picking the things and the people I want to suffer for. I’m picking who’s worth my pain. I’m choosing the lesser of two evils.
But to sit there and say you can avoid suffering is one big lie and to expect that the things you love or live for will not make you suffer is also delusional because it’s always the things we love that have the power to hurt us, whether our careers, our friends, our families or our relationships and there’s nothing you could do that would change that.
Essentially, what you should be asking yourself is who’s worth suffering for and what’s worth the pain? Essentially, life is more about picking your battles rather than avoiding them.
Because you can play it safe instead of trying and taking risks and you can try to avoid pain or heartbreak by stopping people from getting too close to hurting you but you also miss out on living your best life when you shelter yourself from the tough experiences that could change your life. You sit on the sidelines watching life pass you by, which is the worst kind of suffering in my opinion.
You suffer more when you choose not to participate in life. You suffer more when you refuse to let the pain make you grow. You suffer more when you shut people out. You suffer more when you lead a lonely and banal life.
This is a guest post.
I hope you know that you always have a choice.
I hope you understand that you are capable of changing your life even if the odds are against you. I hope you know that there are people out there who are willing to help you and guide you until you make it on your own. I hope you know that the kind of happiness you’re looking for is not out of reach.
I hope you still remember what happiness looks like, what it feels like and what it means to you because life has a way of making you forget and life has a way of making you believe that you don’t deserve it. I hope you still have the courage to fight for that happiness and fight for that life. I hope you don’t make settling a habit just because it’s easier. I hope you don’t make pain a permanent friend just because it’s been with you for a while. I hope you understand that pain is there to make you grow instead of making you suffer.
I hope you know that you always have a choice.
I hope you don’t give up on your love story just because all your previous stories ended in heartbreak. I hope you still believe in the kind of love that softens your heart and makes you trust again. The kind of love that brings out the depths of your emotions, the beauty of your soul and the kindness of your heart. The kind of love that doesn’t remind you of everything that’s wrong with the world. I hope you find the kind of love that restores your faith in romance. The kind of love that stands by you and makes you feel at home.
And I hope you have the courage to leave the kind of love that poisons your heart. The kind of love that forces you to hide who you are or play games or question yourself. I hope you can still take your heart back from those who destroyed it.
I hope you know that you always have a choice.
But more than anything, I hope you never give up on yourself. Your dreams. Your happiness. Your ideas. Your feelings. Your voice. And I hope you know that they matter. Please don’t discount them. Please don’t forget them. Please don’t let your mistakes define you.
I hope you can forgive yourself. I hope you don’t forget your worth because of a few mistakes or a few people who couldn’t love you. I hope you read this and remember that you’re here to evolve. You’re here to learn. You’re not here to be perfect. You’re not here to do everything right.
I hope you know that you always have a choice.
And I hope that in the coldest of moments, you choose to show the world your warmth. And in the midst of all tragedies, you choose to show the world your faith.
And through it all, I hope you always choose yourself.
This is a guest post from Rania Naim.
Originally posted by Adam Morris.
Your walls are so high. Your heart is surrounded by a fortress that is impossible to penetrate. At some point in your life, someone hurt you. You let someone in and they rejected you or betrayed you or hurt you. It could have been family or friends or maybe a lover, but someone caused you to doubt love. So, brick by brick, you built that wall until you couldn’t even see outside it. It has protected you, but now it is keeping you from love, from living fully. It’s keeping you from healing and allowing yourself to accept the love you deserve. Not everyone is like the person who hurt you. But hear this: it’s okay, and it’s time to tear down the wall and to let love back in.
You’ve been strong for so long. Life came at you hard. It took you to rock bottom, and then even a little farther down. You hardened your heart and stood firm. You fought and you clawed your way past the hardships and struggles, and you found the light at the end of the tunnel; you came out on top. But along the way you got so strong that you forgot how to feel, how to let go, how to not be strong. Your shoulders hurt from the burdens you carry , and you’re tired. You wish you could just stop and relax for a minute, but you’re scared of what might happen if you do. So hear this: it is okay, and it is time to give yourself permission to feel again. Let yourself cry and be vulnerable. Lay down the burden you carry and rest. Let go of the past and move forward into the future. It’s okay to not be strong all the time.
You have held on so long that your arms are tired and weak. You’re holding on to dead weight, to people or relationships that are not matching your effort. You hold on because of love or memories or a sense of responsibility. They are dragging you down and it’s tiring. If they don’t care enough to put in effort, why should you? You’re pouring yourself into their lives without being refilled in return, and it’s leaving you empty and drained. But hear this, it’s time, and it’s okay to let them go. Let them go and feel the weight lift. Let go and invest in those that match your effort and commitment. It’s okay to let go of toxic people that aren’t adding to your life, no matter whom they are.
The pain and the baggage and the people from your past can’t keep you down unless you let them. The rejection and abandonment you suffered doesn’t define you. They teach you lessons; they make you stronger. But if you hold on too long, it will callous you and prevent you from living your best life and from finding the joy and love and peace that you so deserve. It is time, time to let go and grow. It is time to choose yourself, time to love and invest in yourself. And it is more than okay that to let yourself do so.
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If you haven’t been living under a rock for the last 30 years I’m pretty sure you know who Bruce Lee was. 😁😁😁
If you have, then you may be interested to know that Lee was a very famous martial artist and actor who sparked the first big interest of Chinese martial arts in the West in the 60’s and 70’s.
But besides being an awesome fighter and iconic figure Lee also had some very useful things to say about life.
Here are 7 of my favourite fundamentals from Bruce Lee.
1. What are you really thinking about today?
“As you think, so shall you become.”
Perhaps the most basic statement of how we work. Think about what you are thinking today. What do those thoughts say about you? About your life? And how well do they really match your plans for your life and your image of yourself?
It’s easy to forget about this simple statement in everyday life. It’s easy to be quite incongruent with what you think on an ordinary day compared to how you view yourself and your goals.
A simple external reminder such as a post-it with this quote can be helpful to keep you and your thoughts on the right track.
An brilliant and beautiful expansion on this thought can be found in James Allen’s “As a man thinketh”.
“It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.”
“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.”
If you want to improve your life then it’s tempting to want to add more. One problem with this may be that you don’t really have the time or energy to do more though. And so your efforts to improve become short-lived.
Adding more and more just creates more stress, worries and anxiety. Removing clutter and activities, tasks and thoughts that are not so important frees up time and energy for you to do more of what you really want to do. And as the clutter in your outer world decreases the clutter in your inner world also has a tendency to decrease.
This has the added benefit of making it easier to actually enjoy whatever you are doing even more while you are doing it.
Adding more thoughts and thinking things over for the 111th time may create a sense of security. It’s also a good way to procrastinate and to avoid taking that leap you know you should take. And the more you think, the harder it gets to act. Perhaps because you want to keep that comforting sense of security and avoid the risk of wrecking that feeling.
Thinking has its place. It can help you plan a somewhat realistic route to your goal and help you avoid future pitfalls. Overthinking is however just a habit that will help you waste a lot of time. It’s more useful to replace that habit with the habit of just doing it.
3. Learn about yourself in interactions.
“To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person.”
The one person that is the hardest to get to really know may be yourself. Studying yourself while you are alone may result in some insights. But it’s also likely to produce a lot of made up thought loops and doubts in your mind.
A good way to really learn more about yourself is study yourself in interactions with other people. How people react and act in these interaction can over time teach you a lot. And what you think and how you react can perhaps teach you even more.
What you see, feel and hear in other people may be a reflection of you. The things you learn by thinking this way may not always be pleasant, but they can be enlightening. They help you to see yourself and also how you may be fooling yourself.
And these powerful insights can be very valuable for your personal growth. So, in interactions with others, try asking yourself: what is reflected?
4. Do not divide.
“Take no thought of who is right or wrong or who is better than. Be not for or against.”
This is a very useful and powerful thought. It is also one that obviously is hard to live by. Why? I believe it’s because the ego loves to divide and find ways to “add more” to itself. It want’s to feel better than someone else. Or more clever. Or prettier. Or cooler. Or wiser.
How can you overcome this way of thinking and feeling?
To me it seems to boil down to not identifying so much with your thoughts or feelings. That doesn’t mean that you stop thinking or feeling. It just means that you realize – and remember in your everyday life – that the thoughts and emotions are just things flowing through you.
You are not them though.
You are the consciousness observing them.
When you realize and remember this it enables you to control the thoughts and feelings instead of the other way around. It also enables you to not take your thoughts too seriously and actually laugh at them or ignore them when you feel that your ego is acting out. When you are not being so identified these things you become more inclined to include things, thoughts and people instead of excluding them.
This creates a lot of inner and outer freedom and stillness. Instead of fear, a need to divide your world and a search for conflicts.
To learn more about this I would recommend Eckhart Tolle’s books like “The Power of Now” and “A New Earth”.
5. Avoid a dependency on validation from others.
“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”
“Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory.”
The ego wants to add because it thinks it’s not enough. One way of doing that is by craving validation from others. We want to feel smart, pretty, successful and so on. And the validation makes you feel good for a while. But soon you need a new fix.
And the problem with being dependent on validation from other people is that you let other people control how you feel. This creates a rollercoaster of emotion in your life.
To find more emotional stability and to take control of how you feel you need to get your validation from to a more consistent source. Yourself. You can replace the expectations and validation of others by setting your own expectations and by validating yourself.
And so you validate yourself by thinking about how awesome you are. You don’t sell yourself short. You appreciate how far you have come and the positive things you have done. You appreciate your own value in the world. You set goals and you achieve those goals. This builds confidence in yourself and in your abilities. These things will help you to build a habit of inner validation.
Now, showing off. Why do we do that? To get validation from others. However, this need for validation often shines through and that is why a thing like bragging seldom works. Instead of seeing the cool and successful person you are trying to project people just see the insecure and needy person looking for validation. And your bragging falls flat.
6. Be proactive.
“To hell with circumstances; I create opportunities.”
It’s easy to get locked into a reactive mindset. You just follow along with whatever is happening. You do what the people around you do. You react to whatever is going on.
And so you get lost in your circumstances. This way of thinking doesn’t feel too good. You tend to feel powerless and like you are just drifting along.
A more useful and pleasurable way of living is to be proactive. As Bruce says: to create opportunities despite the circumstances around you. This feels better and provides better results (no matter if that with your blog or business, while dating or when it comes to your health). But on the other hand it’s also more difficult. It’s easier to just drift along in the reactive stream of life.
And if you want to be proactive then you may have to take the lead quite often. And that can be scary.
Still, living proactively is so much more rewarding and exciting.
7. Be you.
“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.”
Just being yourself is a hard thing to do. You may do it sometimes. And other times you may forget or fall back into old thought patterns. Or you may imitate someone else.
And that comes through too. And it may work.
But I believe that being the real you will work better. Because there the genuine you is shining through. Without incongruency, mixed messages or perhaps a sort of phoniness. It’s you to 100%. It’s you with not only your words but you with your voice tonality and body language – which some say is over 90% of communication – on the same wavelength as your words. It’s you coming through on all channels of communication.
So I’m not saying: “yeah man, you should just be yourself because it’s the right thing to do etc”.
I’m saying that I think being your authentic self – the one where you do little dividing, the one that needs little validation from others, the one where your ego is not running the show and trying to get something from someone – will give you better results and more satisfaction in your day to day life because you are in alignment with yourself.
And because people really like genuine and people really like authenticity.
Who and what you listen to is shaping your life.
Who said you are not good enough? Who said you won’t make it? Who said you can’t ? Who said you’re not smart enough? Who said you’re not pretty enough?Who said you don’t fit in? Who said you’re not loved? Who do you believe? Who are you listening to? Who is responsible for living your life?
WHAT DO YOU SAY?
The voices you are listening to dictates how you’re living your life. The voice you give your attention to and you hear above the noise. If the voice is uplifting, affirming, challenging and empowering – life. However, if the voice is degrading, demeaning, discouraging and leave you doubting yourself – death. It could be your parents, siblings, boss, friend, family, present or ex partner, teacher, or yourself? The person behind the voice influencing your thoughts (if not your own) doesn’t have to be in your life to still impact your life.
Their voices are like seeds planted in your min, taken root and producing thoughts of doubt, fear, low self worth, and limiting belief . Every day we’re faced with choices and our actions within that day usually is connected to which voice we listen to. What’s the pull?
If you’re living your life based on anything that keeps you locked in fear with a bruised or damaged self-image, you have to take action to stop the self-destruct. You have the strength and ability to break the cycle and begin a new chapter to experience a better outcome by choosing to start cultivating the art of paying closer attention to who and what you’re listening to.
It’s never too late to buy into what will feed and nourish your soul. Turn that energy of drain into gain.
It’s time to start saying NO to what isn’t serving you and start saying YES to what will serve you well.
You get to choose, step into owing this area of your life. The courage you need to do is present, it shows itself when you take action. To get started I encourage you to answer the questions listed at the beginning of this article. Listen to your inner self. What is the message your heart is telling you? Once you do, self-awareness rises to identify your who and what. The next step you’ll begin the process of re-establishing your truth about yourself by turning your heart and ears towards what will nourish your soul.
Rise strong from the inside out.
Leopards hate water. Their natural habitat and innate instincts are not meant for being in water.
Yet, when they are hungry, they will go against their very nature in order to feed.
Their “survival instincts” kick in and make them go above and beyond. They transcend the boundaries meant for their species.
So the question is: as a human being what are ‘you’ doing to break free from your comfort zones?
What kind of instincts are you willing to employ in order to fulfill the natural needs and innate necessities for yourself and your family?
If a mere beastly animal in the world has the courage to defy nature, its natural habitat and environmental limitations to ‘value’ its needs, why can’t you?
Faithfulness! What does that word mean to you? It might mean trust, loyalty, closeness, truth or maybe perseverance. Sure, all of those words encompass the meaning of faithfulness but I believe that the true foundation of the word is belief; a belief in something greater than I can see or comprehend. How many times can you go back and recollect times when you displayed pure faithfulness in God and believed he had your best interest in mind? Those times when you thought all was lost and there was no hope left. Only later did you see his plan unfold and he revealed to you the areas of growth and weeding that had to take place. Areas you didn’t even know about but God could see. Do you ever remember saying to your children or remember having been told as a kid, “This is going to hurt you more than me” whenever you were about to get disciplined? As the kid you’re thinking “yeah right! On what planet are you from?” But it’s true. And how much truer is it for our loving Father in heaven? Do you think he enjoys seeing you go through pain and anguish? No. He designed us to walk side by side with him in the Garden of Eden. I love this verse in Exodus 34:6, “The Lord passed in front of Moses and said, “I am the Lord. The Lord is a God who shows mercy, who is kind, who doesn’t become angry quickly, who has great love and faithfulness.”
Again, how often do you think about those times God pulled you through those scary, hard, dark, uncertain times? When you publicly declare that Jesus is the Lord and Savior of your life you better make sure you have your chin straps and mouthpieces ready because it’s about to turn into all-out war. But guess what, (Spoiler Alert) the war is already won! It was won 2,000 years ago on an old rugged cross and an empty grave. Do you have faith that that is the case? Do you have faith that God has your best interest in mind? If not go back and remember those times God showed faithfulness to you.
I know this isn’t ground breaking information and that I am stating the obvious, but I think it’s the obvious that we overlook and tend to just go through the motions with. We, and more notably men, want to over-complicate things to make ourselves feel more important or smarter than everyone else. That wasn’t God’s design. He made Christian living simple. Notice I said simple and not easy, because Christian living is not a walk in the park. But guess who is walking with you step for step in full faith that you will come out of this stronger than ever? Jesus… “The Lord is a God…who has great love and faithfulness.”
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him – Hebrews 11: 6
Ever since I was a little boy, I have been enamored with sports. I have spent a significant portion of my time on earth playing and watching sports. My favorite sports to watch are those that involves my football club playing, wrestling, and basketball. Actually the last game between The Golden states Warriors and The Toronto Raptors was a wide screen viewing with friends.
This game was supposed to have been an easy win for the Toronto Raptors, but it was not easy at all. In fact, the game was not decided until the final play. It was an up-and-down emotional roller coaster. One minute I was jumping up and down in excitement, and the next I was so frustrated that I had to pray just to keep from having an outburst of anger. As I sat there fighting through my emotions and wondering why I get so stressed watching these games, the Lord took the opportunity to teach me something.
In that moment, it dawned on me that I was never nearly as nervous or emotional while playing sports as I now get watching them. I have played in games where my team won by a substantial margin and games where my team lost badly. I have played in games that came down to the last play or the final inning, and in several of those games I was entrusted to take the final shot or throw the final pitch. I can’t remember one of those moments when I was as nervous or frustrated as I sometimes become now just WATCHING other people play.
What God impressed upon me is that I wasn’t as nervous when I was playing, because I had some control of the outcome. It doesn’t require faith when we have control of a situation. We all feel a little bit better when we have our hand on the ball, and we at least get to try to affect the outcome. However, in those moments when things are completely out of our control and we have no say in the outcome, we feel helpless. It is in those moments that we have to trust God the most.
The bottom line is that, as human beings, we want control. We want there to be a formula that, if we follow it, will result in life working out in accordance with what we think we deserve. But faith is defined as “confidence in what we HOPE for and assurance about what we DO NOT see.” That definition does not say, “confidence in what we KNOW FOR CERTAIN is coming and assurance about what we have already seen.”
There are parents who work diligently to raise up their children in a Godly way, only to watch those children make poor decisions that negatively affect their lives. There are devout followers of Christ who obey his commands, and what they receive in return is rejection and persecution from the world around them. There are loving and caring people who devote their lives to serving others, who still have to deal with loss and disappointment in their own lives. In all of these situations, it takes complete and utter faith to maintain trust in God, and to not venture down our own path where we have the majority of control. It takes faith in the midst of the struggle to lift our hands towards heaven and to say, “Nevertheless, not my will but yours be done.” It is one thing to trust God when we are still clinging desperately to our ledge of control, but it is quite another to have faith when we let go and feel like we are free falling towards the ground without a parachute.
I would be willing to bet that there are people reading this who have reached a point of desperation. There are people who have received poor news about their health, people whose marriage feels like it’s collapsing before their eyes, people who have lost loved ones, and so many more unfortunate circumstances of life that are outside of our control. Our natural tendency might be to just give up and quit, to throw in the towel on the good fight of faith. However, I want to pass on some good news today. It’s always those moments that we depend on Him the most in which God’s presence and grace are the most tangible in our lives. Throughout scripture we see people with their backs against the wall, who feel like there is no way out, and then God shows up in mighty ways. If you are going through a tough time right now, it’s not time to give up. It is time to press in. It is time to lift your hands up to God in faith and say, “Nevertheless, not my will, but yours be done.” Your circumstances may have forced you to a place where you had to let go of that ledge and trust God. The good news is that you can, because He loves you and cares for you!
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The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun. – Jon Krakauer
You have all the answers to your questions and you have the solutions to your problems. Even the things that are out of your control, you can still choose how to react to them and how to respond to them.
You have the power to walk away from certain people; people who don’t see the greatness in you, people who don’t believe in you and people who don’t see you for who you really are.
You are capable of distancing yourself fromanything that doesn’t motivate you or make you grow. You’re allowed to change the terms of your life according to your own conditions.
You have the power to move on from heartbreak and find solace in being single or wait for someone who wants to love you the way you deserve to be loved. You have the strength to live without someone you thought you couldn’t live without. You have the power to leave even if they got used to you staying. You’re allowed to speak up even if they got used to your silence. You’re allowed to start using your voice.
You have the power to redefine yourself instead of defining yourself by your failures or your mistakes. You have the power to choose the direction you want your life to take without following anyone’s map.
Sometimes things take time, sometimes it takes patience, sometimes it takes sacrifice — but it always needs you. It needs your voice, your beliefs, your strength, your faith and your resilience.
You’re free to see the world with your own eyes and paint your own colors. You don’t have to use someone else’s glasses. You don’t have to buy someone else’s painting.
You have the power to reinvent yourself and change, as long as this change is coming from within, coming from your own voice, from your own feelings, from your own soul and your own depth.
And what you choose not to do can be just as important as what you choose to do. Because this is your life. This is your destiny. And you’re still here for a reason. You’re not here to be stagnant, you’re here to evolve.
Submitted by Julie
Growing up i remembered my weekly “career” announcements. Anchor woman, flight attendant and teacher, among many, many others.
Each week i heard ” you can do that. You will be good at that”.
That was my mom and dad.
Throughout life, i learned that not everyone believed in me the way my mom and dad believed in me. It was during those times i would hear those words the loudest. I dug deep and gain success.
I have 2 children of my own now and i echo those words of encouragement to them everyday. I often tell my nieces and nephews, as well as my co-workers that same message.
These words will be passed along from generation to generation, as i listen to other family members tell their children and even my boys telling that to each other.
Most often when we think of what passes from one generation to the next it consists of artifacts and genes.
I will pass these words on and i know they will carry on for each generation to come.
After all ” I CAN do that!”
False Evidence Appearing Real, or Fear is running rampant through our world today. We have a fear of attacks from extreme religious groups, economic down fall, the ongoing presidential election, and not to mention the fears in our own little worlds. Do we have enough money to pay rent? Am I going to lose my job? Is my kid going to get bullied today in school?
In my opinion, fear is the ultimate weapon of the enemy. He uses fear to keep us from tithing, speaking out in the name of Jesus, and it even keeps us from fully worshiping in church. To me that’s a sign that fear has snuck too far into our everyday lives if we are afraid what people will think of us if we raise a hand during a worship song in church.
Fear by itself isn’t conducive to our spiritual walk with the Lord. But when fear is mixed with other godly virtues we create a healthy dose of fear that motivates us to draw closer to him. Let’s start by looking at what Solomon, the wisest man to ever live, said about fear;
Proverbs 9:10 – “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”
Here we have fear mixed with humility and faith. We have faith that there is a higher being than us (God) and humility to understand that he is in control and all knowing. It’s just like in school; when we realized or understood that the teacher in class knew more about a subject than we did we were more likely to come to them for help. God works in the same way. He not only created everything in and around us, but he also lived with us. God fully understands everything we go through and yearns for us to turn to him for understanding and wisdom.
Philippians 2:12 – “…continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling”
Fear mixed with the reverence of God can be a great motivator. Never cease seeking the Lord and his word for we do not know the day or hour which God will come back. What a glorious day that will be which I don’t want to miss, and I don’t want you to either!
When we have a healthy balance of faith, humility, reverence, etc.… with fear we are able to see the change God wants to make in us. Whether that’s asking for forgiveness for a sin(s), changing an attitude or lifestyle, or becoming more consistent in our spiritual disciplines. The fear of the Lord should motivate us as Christians and not paralyze us or cause us to stay as we are. If the fear in your life is not motiving you to draw closer to him, then it is not from God. Rebuke that fear in the name and blood of Jesus Christ and break the hold fear has on you.
Dear Father, please show me the areas of my life that need changed. Use a healthy dose of fear to motivate me to change. I want to give you everything I have and I can’t do that without you. You have my heart and I am yours forever. You are my strength, my rock, and the one I hold onto. You hold everything in the palm of your hand but yet you still make time for me. How beautiful is your unfailing love and how blessed I am to call you mine. Thank you father. Amen!