family, spiritual

Gratitude

“It is through gratitude for the present moment that the spiritual dimension of life opens up.” –Eckhart Tolle

Gratitude will be on the top of my list from now on. When you’re thankful for the little things, big things will come. Be grateful for all the blessing in your life, and I am about to tell you why.

  • Your body diagnosed with a terminal disease.
  • What do you have to be grateful for? Someone you love just passed away unexpectedly.
  • What do you have to be thankful for?
  • Everything in your life is fabulous. What do you have to be grateful for?

Tragedy strikes your life hard. Finding anything at that moment to be grateful for my appearance would be difficult. Hurt, anger, and emotion cloud our minds. We even curse God for what has happened. I get it, and it’s okay to be emotional, but we have to find our way back to peace.

family, grateful, gratitude

We all get hit in the gut with tragedy, divorce, job loss; you could make a laundry list of things that steal our peace. The most challenging part of this is to find gratitude. If we make it through something horrible, we can make it through anything. NO, some things are not fair. Life in many situations is not fair. The good news is God sees these things; it does not go unnoticed.

Where folks lose God in these moments is “how could God let my son or daughter get cancer” or some other tragedy befalls your life. If God’s all-powerful and performs these fantastic miracles how could he allow drama in my life?

I wish I had a right answer for why some things happen, and some things don’t. Why there is injustice in the world. Free will answers a lot of questions, but certainly not all. We must accept reality, work to find peace and move on with our life. I’m sorry if you have had a tragedy to befall your life. Over some time, the pain will abate itself.

Some loss we don’t want to know “nothing from nothing” leave me alone you don’t know my pain. Families have endured tragedy through the ages. How many sons have we lost to war? How many children have we failed to cancer or disease? None of it is fair in any sense of the word.

What we must with everything that we have in us is find gratitude. I get it you want to scream when you hear this statement. Some things that you must think about to find an answer. Let’s say you lost someone to death. Do you honestly in your heart believe that person would want you to suffer? I’m in no way negating your pain. You do have to ask yourself though would my loved one want me in extreme pain?

Of course, they would not! If I passed away, I don’t want my family to suffer. Yes, we all need to mourn and time will make the days pass easier. Don’t blame God for a natural occurrence. We all have a time that we’re going to die. It’s never going to come at the right time. Celebrate the time you did have with them.

So, we’ve covered the extreme. It’s the hardest thing in the world to do but finding gratefulness amid anguish won’t be easy. Life will go on even if you don’t think it will. If you can see the smallest of things to be grateful. Offer that to God. I wish I had better words to ease someone’s pain.

Being grateful in good times and bad will always be returned with a beautiful blessing or blessings. Life can kick you right in the gut when you least expect it. Remaining grateful will keep your life moving forward positively.

The flip side of this coin is stopping to be grateful when life is roses. Life could not be better work is excellent, the family is good, and your life is moving quickly. Taking time to stop and let God know you’re grateful for the harvest in your life. More importantly, than can imagine is to stop and thank God.

happy, family, joy, peace

Let God know that without him this beautiful life would not be possible. Stay humble in your praise.

For me during this season of my life. When I began to be grateful for my hardship with family, finance and personal experience. Finding the smallest thing to be thankful for was difficult. Then I’m reminded that my life is not as bad as others. You can lose your health in the blink of an eye, the same thing with your job. It can always be worse.

Taking time daily to thank God here are some ideas to get you started:

 

  • You have a job, may not be the one you want but you have a paycheck!
  • You have a car to get to work that runs!
  • If you have kids and they’re healthy. Imagine parents that just found out their child diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer, only have weeks to live.
  • If you’re living, breathing, and healthy. Imagine the same scenario as a child above, but you.
  • Beautiful day outside.
  • The roof over your head.
  • Food to eat at home. You realize how many folks will go hungry today?
  • If you are a husband or wife, being grateful for your marriage.

If you try hard enough, you can find a lot more than just this short list. Plenty of things to be grateful if you search your heart. Keep in mind that if you can be thankful during the hardest times in your life. The blessings you will receive will indeed be life-changing. It’s been my experience that during one of the most challenging times in my life. Being grateful truly helps me find peace.

Coming from an incredibly dark place in my life where everything was in turmoil. By feeling happy again because I’m grateful for what I do have. Small things, big things it does not matter. What matters is that I feel so glad and the real kicker, most of my problems are still in full swing. With a calm mind, however, I am making real progress to cure my problems. Thank you, God!

spiritual

The How Is Not as Important as Belief

“Be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books – especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance every day.” — John Wooden

Adversity comes with a sense of “I can’t do that” or “I don’t know how this will ever change.” What changed for me was believing that the how will come if I understand. You can’t merely want something to turn, sit on the couch and wait for it.

Problems can seem to be insurmountable to the point we don’t see how that anything will change. I heard something that resonated with me. If God can put stars in the Universe, he can probably figure out a way to help your issue. All it requires is a belief deep in your heart.

If your problems are financial for example, you cannot just say, God, I need to pay my bills. You still need to go to work and do your part. How many times in your life has something happened that was unexpected out of the blue.  Believe that God can work miracles in your life.

faith, Jesus, God, hope

What happened to me especially with my financial issues and my relationship was the catalyst I needed for change. I let them go. They’re so big that I could not do it on my own. The mountain was too big for me to climb on my own. In the natural world, I was on my own. This book is teaching you how to live in the supernatural world where God lives. Trusting that behind the scenes he is working to help me.

Worry and self-doubt stifled any progress that I could have made. It made nothing better. My hand in trying to fix everything only made it worse. You can choose to worry all day long if you want. The alternative is let it go, believe that faith does it. Do not worry about the how that’s God’s job. I promise he does not need your help. He does not work well with others; in this, he prefers to work alone. It’s your job to let him.

Little by little my financial worries are dissipating. All my bills are getting paid, sometimes just getting paid. Not sure how I am even going to eat yet I have not gone hungry. My credit is intact, and the phone calls have stopped. I am doing my part every day. God sees that I work, I work with a smile, I don’t complain that there is not enough, and I smile to be a friend to all.

The other day I received an email from one of my favorite Church’s that they were going to fall short of their budget this year. The reasons I understood why. So, I could only give $10.00. I did so joyfully. I left my job to run an errand. Came back a customer caught me outside and asked about a trailer I had for sale. Long story short my commission for this small trailer was $100.00. The deal fell into my lap. A ten-fold return for something I just believed in my heart.

It’s the hardest thing I have ever done, belief in God. Believe in promises from a book written thousands of years ago. Even if you’re skeptical about God, be open to learning something new by studying the word of God to change your life.

What if the story is true. How as a father could you bear seeing your son beaten to a pulp, then forced to carry his instrument of destruction (the cross) to your death? The strength that took to endure is beyond mortal comprehension. I think we can believe after that sacrifice in his word. The word that gives me life.

From all of this, you can rest assured that his promise is real. All you must do is believe. Praise God every day for your life. Thank him and directly through prayer and your excellent work blessing will come. When the enemy says, “see it’s not changing fast, God has left you.” That’s when you can rest assured that just around the bend, just a little further in faith, your life is about to change. All we must do is believe when everything suggests nothing is happening. That’s when you need to sit down relax and enjoy the ride.

Belief must be a total commitment. You cannot just say if you must believe in your heart. It’s easy to say I believe in God. If, however, I do nothing to back up that belief its words nothing more. When you hop up on a chair, you have unwavering faith that it will hold you. What if a spring is Broken just below the surface of the seat cover. You flop down and drive a spring right into your behind, ouch. Every day without a thought or care, flop you go. The real question is how we can believe in something so innocuous so entirely and yet struggle believing in God?

The real question for us all is how do we get unwavering faith in God so that we can flop in his chair? The short answer is prayer and letting go. We must put down the luggage we carry and let God have it. Way easier said than done. With faith the how does come! Imagine the wonder if you could put down the backpack of worry we all carry.

Having an unwavering belief will require that your role with the punches, pardon the cliché. Did I mention this is where the test comes? What you didn’t say anything about a test! What do you think tough times are? A check of your faith, your belief that everything will be okay. OR, you sink into a Pitiful Pearl state of mind. I’m also not talking about major life events like death or divorce. I’m talking about regular life stuff.

Life will throw you test to check your resolve. Okay, you’re going to get over this. We’re always going to have something to contend with in our lives. How we handle issues that get in the way is how God will judge us. Mine alter ego Pitiful Pearl would many times say “just my luck” “why can’t I catch a break” when just handling what comes with grace will get us through quickly.

When God knows that WE know he is in charge, that all things are possible through Christ. Guess what all things are possible through Christ. We can’t see the HOW but what we can see is that God will handle whatever comes down the pipe. Do what is in front of you every day. Remember you can’t sit on your backside and say okay God handle it. You still must get up and go to work, you still must be a friend, you still must be a parent, and life will move on. What will be different is if you are different, meaning if you handle the next season of your life with grace. Or does Pitiful Pearl visit you? It’s a choice you must make.

Keeping focused on believing God has us in his hand when life just kicked you right in you know what. God sees you taking a shot right in the gut but letting him know that yep it hurt but God I’m standing with you. I have done this now many times only to see his grace work in my life. I went from horrible dark places scaring my family for my safety. To realize that if I stay out of God’s way, peace does come to me.

My problems may not resolve themselves as quickly as I would like. I could jump in and start trying to solve problems that are just too big for me to handle alone. Instead, I am using what I am telling you to try, and it works. Nothing happens in the time frame I want. It does happen in God’s good time. When I let God handle my life and realize I may even miss a deadline for some significant life event but allow God’s timing to reveal itself. Somehow even at the brink of disaster, it all works out. Nothing blew up, nothing life changing happened, it resolves itself without my help. I did the work in front of me each day.

The how for me is not as important to me as letting God know that I believe. That in times where I think my world is blowing up, I without hesitation trust him. Am I 100% on this NO! That only makes me human subject to make mistakes. Quickly I will let God know that I am sorry, my forgiveness given to me. Presented in the words of the Bible; you might want to get a copy (study bible).

This chapter will close with this thought. If your child got deathly ill, you would have no problem going to God. In fact, you will probably go to God every moment of every day until your baby gets well. You will thank him if your child pulls through, earnestly you will thank him.

 My point is if you want God to perform a miracle in your life. You don’t have to have a catastrophic event for that to occur. If you want your life to be about beautiful blessings and happiness, go to God every day in faith prayer. Thank him for the blessings you have even if they have not manifested themselves in your life.

Don’t wait as I did until life blows up and now you have a huge mess to clean up. We all go through hard seasons in our life. Would it not be nice to have the tools now to help you weather the storm?

family, spiritual

Drifting away Spiritually

Over the last few weeks, I have noticed a bit of complacency in my own life. While I think it’s okay to feel okay. My life does feel a bit out of step. How to keep grounded in your spiritual journey and not drift. A good title for this article, The Anchor, is Up and we’re Drifting.

The good news for me is that I recognize that I am drifting. It’s a common problem to have everything going okay, and we let our guard down only to find ourselves straying off the path. Hence here I sit!

Being okay is indeed okay. We need to relax our minds to reduce stress, take a moment to simply be at peace. The problem lies in getting too complacent. Forgetting that our spiritual journey cannot only occur in times of our own need. When things are blowing up we can’t then go to God and say save me. It’s not that he won’t it’s that we allowed ourselves to stray from our connection to God.

God, Church, spiritual

So today is my day to get back on the spiritual horse and ride again. Tonight I am going to Church because someone I think a great deal at Church asked me too. Even though it’s the end of the month for me at work, we’re behind and I could use this as an excuse to not attend. I work in the Church bookstore before and after service. They need me to volunteer tonight which is not a regular night for me.

If I pause and look at the invitation to help is God working subtlety to help me recognize where I’m at spiritually. Sometimes, you have to look beyond just a simple request and see if you might be missing the real reason. Me needing to attend Church, be of service to others in the bookstore. These are very important to me and need my fullest attention.

My point to all this is don’t get complacent with God. We all tend to find peace in our lives. This is when we need to continue to worship God, don’t put off prayers, church or being spiritually connected to the source in some way. The lord has nudged me a bit to remind me that he loves me enough to say Bob come back to me, don’t drift so far out.

My heart feels much better knowing that I actually recognize what we’ve discussed in this brief article. Things are okay in my life and God is working miracles in my life all the time. It’s time to say to him I love you, thank you and I am always here to worship you!

If you feel that you’ve drifted a bit. Get back to Church, do something nice for anyone today. Give to a local charity, food bank or dog rescue. Do something to be a blessing to someone today. It can be a small thing just put yourself out there.

family, spiritual

New Day Faith is Key

With the changing season of my life, wow is life opening up. As you know from reading my blog, I have made a very clear choice to try something new in my life. To stand in spiritual faith walk with my soul and not my head that will direct my life. Keep my “will” out and trusting in faith. Of course, I do work to move my life.

Trusting in faith is not laying on your backside eating a pizza waiting for the pilot of your Jet to call and say “hey where are we going boss today?” We still have to get up, work, do things to fill our minds and body with good energy. Focus daily on walking our path with God. So far that has worked out in ways I never imagined.

Sure it hurts the reasons that got me here are painful. I mourn the loss of what I had hoped would be a lifetime. It most days makes no sense to me as to why we can’t make the wrong in our life right. Working from the premise that all things happen for a reason. Then letting go to allow destiny to unfold has been a challenge. This time I am resolute in not losing. God has a purpose for my life, so let’s see what that is.

I wish I could say that God sits at the end of my couch with me and says “Bob this will be your destiny” as he explains it all to me. Sorry, but it doesn’t work that way.

hope, faith, God

The challenge for me has been not to make things happen but allow things to happen. As a salesperson all my life it’s hard not to jump in and sell God this is what is needed right now. Having the ability to discern between my will and God’s will sometimes take a bit of time. Asking myself is this really what God wants me to do? Where patience comes in, and an open heart must be available to receive. The big challenge for me!

What I have done to step up to that challenge is be resolved this time I am not going to lose. That my way got me here, so maybe trying God’s way will change my life forever. That all the promises in the Bible I choose to receive. I’m not a big organized religion person, but I do believe in God. Over the last few years I got away from my spiritual journey, go WAY off the path. Today my feet are firmly planted on the trail.

Decide that it’s a new day. Life will begin to relax for you. Months ago I had a mountain of debt, tax troubles, and seemingly no real way out. Since my decision that I need help, spiritual help, which God needs to pretty much pull the wagon. To his glory, all the financial problems that seemed insurmountable are in fact manageable. Through God’s grace, my credit is fine, all bills paid on time deals made to lighten the burden done.

All I did was work as I should every day. Releasing all of it to God. Told God that this was too big for me to do on my own and asked for help. Help arrived at God’s timing teaching me that the world was not blowing up, that my problems are not the most pressing issues on the planet. When it was time, everything was paid or delayed enough to allow me time to overcome obstacles to my advantage.

Stress over all the problems I just let go to God. Surrender is the hardest part. Our heads tell us to get in the game fix the problems. Our head is what got us here in the first place. Do the work, tell God what you need so you can feel better. Never beg! “Please, please God help me pay my rent.” No, be grateful that he already has. Call it in as though it were already don’t. Grateful!!!

It would be nice to tell you it’s not a struggle to change. It is, and you will go through some real pain, doubt, and frustration. Well before you find real peace. Don’t despair we all did and got through. Many days I have self-doubt and struggle. The times I do feel at peace or do receive a blessing it’s far more than I imagined it would be. Sometimes, God truly shows out in your life! Those are the times when you feel connected spiritually.

Whatever you do never quit, pursue faith with all your soul can muster. The pain is the enemy trying to keep you down. It is not God testing you, it’s the enemy wanting you to be miserable. Do not let anyone sway your journey of faith it’s worth every moment of your time.

Breaking through the tough moments in faith, God finds ways to open up possibilities that you never dreamt possible. I am living proof!

 

 

 

 

 

 

family, spiritual

Lesson Learned

This past week I put myself through a little heartbreak. You ever feel when you want something so much you might be willing to try just about anything. Well, at least what is in reason, I didn’t go that far over the side.

Suffice to say what I thought was something amazing turned out to be garbage. Someone is praying on others. It’s sad to know people are out their that can do such things. Live and learn.

The upside to this is awareness and the fact that I did reach out in prayer asking for guidance. During this ordeal, I kept asking God for guidance so that I would not make a mistake. That part felt good. I know I am ambiguous about what it is, let’s say the what is not as important as the lesson learned.

Those of you that read my work on a regular basis know that my stories are the result of my walk in faith. My stories based on the application of faith and the result.

One area that I do think I did not pay as close of attention to is trusting God to provide. Letting what I want coming in God’s good time not my own. Recognizing this did show me that my decision, my will, getting in the middle of things has the potential for bad results.

relationship, faith, Jesus
Stay in Faith

Good news is that I don’t feel bad, I feel educated. Lessons can take many forms, so don’t beat yourself up. We can take the wrong path by choice or disguised as a good choice. Recognizing it then saying “thank God I caught this not before it gets any further.” Having the experience may stink, but recognizing it for what it was is the real lesson.

For me, if I walk in faith knowing that God will provide for me works out beyond my wildest dreams. Some of the life challenges I face are easier to deal with and get resolved. As long as I stay in faith, it will. Believe with faith, even when you have no reason to have an ounce of faith, I promise you it gets better.

My joy in life today comes from the fact that I can live in peace with myself. I have a higher power than myself helping to guide my life and decisions. In that are happiness and peace. Stay in faith no matter what is in front of you. Realize that the enemy wants you to stay down. Therefore, you will be hit, hit hard with doubt. Never lose sight of the result, that path may take a four-wheel drive tank to get down with many challenges. God kept me from harm before any real harm could occur. For that, I am grateful!

As always I would love to hear from you: