It’s Great To Be Alive

April 12, 2013

As I was thinking about today’s writing topic, I thought back to some gifts I received at Christmas when I was a kid. I was big into games and electronics. The two I most remember are my first Monopoly game, and a Coleco Electronic Quarterback game (I waited months for that one). They were both great gifts. Sometimes I won, and sometimes I lost. I don’t like to lose, so these gifts would upset me sometimes. However, I was still very happy to have them.

I think of some of the wonderful gifts I have today, such as my family. They too are great gifts that sometimes disappoint and upset me. However, I still truly treasure them.

My point is…life is a gift. It will sometimes disappoint and frustrate you, but if you treat it as the true gift that it is, you will treasure it and be blessed. Don’t let the difficulties of life get you down. Know that you may lose sometimes, but you were made to win. Like one of my blog’s messages says…life is sweet. Enjoy it!

To drive the point home of treasuring life, I’ve included a link to my favorite Christian song of 2012. Enjoy!


What Is The Most Powerful Question For Success?

April 8, 2013

As a teacher, I strongly believe in the process of asking questions to gauge the knowledge and success of my students. From my experience in life, I also find it helpful to ask myself questions. Like with my students, it’s a great way to get me thinking and see where I stand in certain areas of my life.

In my study of guidelines for success, I have read of proper questioning techniques you can use to question yourself. In fact, it’s quite simple. There’s one question you should ask, and one you shouldn’t.

The best question word to ask yourself is simply…”what”? As in, what exactly do I want? What exactly is the success I am seeking?

In order to reach a goal, you need to know exactly what it is, in as much detail as you can. Once you’re locked in on the “what”, your goal is already significantly closer to you.

Before I share what to do with the “what”, please allow me to share a question you should not spend too much time focusing on. That question is..”how”? People spend too much time and get too caught up on figuring out how the goal will be realized. I understand that this is easy to do. For example, one of my goals is to positively impact thousands of lives a day through my writing. I am not close to that yet. I honestly have no idea how to accomplish this at this point. However, if I spent all of my mental energy trying to figure it out, I would just stress myself out and most likely give up. I know, because this has happened with other goals I’ve had. That’s not the way to go about it.

Let’s go back to focusing on the “what”. The first thing is to be completely clear on what you want. Then pray and ask for it. God already knows what you want, but I believe He wants to hear you say it. Pray in detail for exactly what you want. Then develop the necessary faith by visualizing the success you desire. For at least a few minutes a day, imagine with all five senses what it would be like if you already had your wish. See it and feel it with as much detail, feeling, and positive emotion as you can.

When you focus on the “what” and visualize the desired success, an interesting thing happens. The “how” part of the equation takes care of itself. You will be inspired with the necessary courses of action to take, and then the inspiration to do it. Instead of stressing over the details, you spend your mental energy adding positivity to your being instead of stressing yourself out. Then you have the added energy to carry out the necessary actions. Of course once you reach the goal, your level of happiness reaches an even higher level.

I challenge you to focus on the “what” question instead of the how to reach your goals. Keep your mind fixed on the successful end result. Your “how” questions will be answered automatically. The next thing you know, you will be at your desired destination.

I would love for you to share your “what” goals or success stories of those goals you’ve already reached. Please share here. Have an excellent day : )


How Do You Feel About Your Wishes Coming True?

April 6, 2013

Think of one of your greatest wishes. How would you feel if it came true? That’s the question of the day.

Please don’t think of a one word, 10 second answer. Seriously think about it. How would it feel? What does it look like? Where are you? Who are you with? What are you doing? How does it sound? Can you taste or smell anything? How does it feel to the touch? Play this scene in your mind. Live it, experience it, and feel every positive emotion. It’s a great experience isn’t it?

What you just did is something known as creative visualization. Living out your desire as if it’s actually happening. What you also did was bring that desire much closer to you. How? It’s all part of the Law of Attraction and the power of your mind. The more your subconscious mind sees your wish being realized and feels the excitement and joy of it, the more it believes it. The more you believe it. And when you believe it, you are much more likely to put yourself in the position to make it happen. The Law of Attraction has a lot of factors. Basically, when you feel the positive emotions of your desire being realized, conditions align themselves to make it more likely. I see it a bit differently. I see it as God rewarding your faith, and arranging the situations to answer your prayer.

To make this work, spend as much time as you can today answering the introductory question…”how would I feel when”…you fill in the blank with your wish. Then spend as much time as possible feeling the way you would feel. Focus on those feelings of joy, accomplishment, freedom, energy, or whatever it is. It may not bring your wish today, but I can attest that it will make you more happy and joyful just from the enjoyment of this experience. And when you are happy and joyful, great things happen anyway!

I know from experience that this process works. Not only does it bring more joy to my day, but it brings me to my life’s desires, and I am amazed every time when they are realized! I will also say that if my exact wish is not realized, it either happens later, or I receive something better. The same is true for you. You can’t lose!

I would love to hear about what your greatest wishes are and how it would feel when they are accomplished (notice how I didn’t say if). I invite you to share, and I will certainly pray for their fulfillment. May every wish come true : )


What Has He Done?

April 4, 2013

Ah, the beauty of blogging : ) I say that because what I’m about to write here today has nothing to do what I originally intended. It’s happened before, and it’s one of the quirks of writing that fascinates me.

As far as my intended topic today, that will have to wait. Instead, I write about something I read about twice in today’s Bible reading. Usually, that means God is trying to tell me something. Since He told it to me, I will share with you.

The first reading is from Deuteronomy. Moses is about to die, and he is giving a farewell address to the people. In this address, He reminds the people of all the great things God has done for them and all of the miracles they’ve witnessed. I then read Psalm 78. The message was the same! It was a reminder of the great things God has done for the people up until that time. I will say that I did not purposely read these verses. It just so happens that they were scheduled for today on the one year Bible plan I am using. Coincidence, however? I don’t think so.

This caused me to reflect on my life today. In one sense I have a very happy life. In another sense, I am far short of some of my goals, and I seek greater things. I may be getting a bit personal here, but it definitely helps communicate my point. I take the 6 main areas of my life and what I am shooting for:

1. God – As good as it is, my faith can certainly be better.
2. Family – I am still not the family leader I believe I could be.
3. Money – I am still far from the goals I have set.
4. Career – My dream is to touch thousands of lives a day by writing from home or traveling to speak and motivate others. Not there yet.
5. Health – I want to be in better shape and have more energy.
6. Friends/Extended Relatives – I strive to be a better friend and relative.

Am I complaining about the things I mentioned above? Not really. I’m just saying I am striving for great things. However, as I thought about this today, here is what I was reminded of:

1. God – Jesus died for me, and God is extremely proud of this creation. I am special and worthy in His eyes.
2. Family – I have been blessed with the most wonderful family. Better than I could have ever asked for.
3. Money – I have a house, two cars, computers, smart phones, readily available food and clothing. That means I’m richer than 90% of the rest of the world.
4. Career – Although politics have ruined it, and I strive for greater things, my dream job was to be a teacher. I am in my 10th year teaching, and I write this on my Spring break.
5. Health – I look and feel better than I should for someone my age. Also, I have never had any major injuries or sickness in these first 46 years. Neither has anyone else in my immediate family.
6. I am blessed with the most wonderful relatives and friends.

I don’t say this to brag by any means. I haven’t done anything to deserve it, and they are all gifts from above. I say it as a reminder based on what I read today. Let us look back on our lives and realize how much God has done for us. Let us remember the miracles He has already done as we seek greater ones. Even if your life has been difficult, there are things I’m sure you can find that are blessings.

One final thought is this…it has been proven to me that the more thankful we are for what we have and the more we reflect on what God has already done, the more the blessings continue to pour into our lives. I challenge you to reflect on the miracles you have seen in your life, and the great places you’ve been, whether you can count them on one hand, or you have a long list. Focus on them and be thankful for them. If you do, you can expect more to come. Enjoy!


The Start Of A New Season

April 3, 2013

I actually wrote this post several years ago. However, even thought we’re a couple of days into it, I thought it would be appropriate to share again…

One of my favorite things on this earth (besides my family and friends) is baseball. As of March 31 a new season is upon us. Besides the excitement of my favorite sport being available to watch regularly for the next 7 months, I enjoy this time for other reasons as well. The start of a new baseball season represents several things, such as:

1. Renewal – There is no better time for such a wonderful sport like baseball to start than in Spring. The dead of winter is now becoming the growth of Spring. The grey is becoming green again; flowers are beginning to bloom; the sound of singing birds is returning; warmer temperatures enable us to return to the beautiful outdoors. These are several examples. I’m sure you can think of others that appeal to you.

2. Hope – My favorite team is the New York Mets. If you read the pre-season reports, many are saying the Mets will not do well this year. Unfortunately, they are probably right. However, at this time, there is always hope. No matter how poorly they’ve done in the past or are are predicted to do this year, every team is just as good as the other right now. Every fan can dream World Series. Yes, for some reality hits fast, but for now everyone has a chance. It’s like the New York lottery slogan…”hey, ya never know”. In many cases, the teams that get to the World Series are not the ones people expected to be there in the beginning of the season.

3. Excellent competition – Yes, there are 162 games. However, each one can make a difference in the end. The thing I like about baseball players is they play most games as if it were the last. The results are not always there, but I rarely get the feeling a player or team is not taking the game seriously. Besides, baseball is the type of game I can enjoy on any beautiful afternoon or evening, especially with a bag of chips or peanuts in one hand, and a cold drink in the other.

These are just a few reasons I enjoy the game so much. I love it for what it is and for what it represents. Now the wait is over. So take me out to the ballgame, buy me some peanuts and cracker jack, and PLAY BALL!

Enjoy!


What Kind Of Advice Is That?

April 2, 2013

So you have questions and need advice on how to make great things happen in your life? How effective would it be if the advice I provided was to let someone else do it for you? I acknowledge that it wouldn’t be the best advice.

I am about to be a hypocrite. I just admitted that the above advice would be a very poor recommendation, but I am now providing it to you. Are you looking for greatness and miracles in your life? Continue reading to see why the hypocritical advice provided might be your best option.

As I read about the miracles in the New Testament, I realize a pattern. In almost every case, the pattern is the same. The person simply asks, demonstrates faith, and follows some simple instructions. Then they simply let Jesus do His thing, and the miracle takes place.

If you are looking to accomplish particular goals or if you desperately need a miracle, I suggest you follow this same formula. Pray and state specifically what you want. Have faith and know that with God nothing is impossible. Do whatever you are inspired to do. Then have the faith to leave the rest in God’s hands, and let Him do the rest for you. He is the one that has the unlimited power to make the miracle happen.

As I read these miracle Bible stories again and again, I cannot find a single one where this formula did not result in a miracle. Every time someone asked, had faith, completed their small task, and left it to God to do the rest, they received the miracle they were seeking.

Please know that these same miracles take place today. If you want to see them in your life, you can simply follow the steps outlined above. In God’s time, your miracle will happen. If it’s not exactly what you wanted, it will only be something better!

I would love to hear about the miracles in your life. Please share when they occur. Also, if any of you would like additional prayer, I would be happy to do so for you. In the meantime, enjoy the blessings : )


A Fast Way To A Remarkable Life

April 1, 2013

I’ve been away for the past few days. I attended a Fine Arts competition in Syracuse NY. Members of our church participate regularly, but this year was extra special for me because my 13 year old daughter participated for the first time. A group wrote a song, and she was invited to sing it for them. We were very proud as she did a great job, especially for her first performance in front of a public crowd. If it went well enough, she would have the opportunity to compete in national competition in Orlando. Exciting stuff!

As it turns out, my daughter did not receive the opportunity to move on. Why not? After all, I said she was very good, right? Very true. However, as we waited to see who would move on, the top acts performed again for the large crowd. It was here where I realized why they were moving on. It’s because they stood out from the rest. Some sang, some played instruments, some preached, and some acted in skits. Many performers were very good. In every category, these top performers were different from the rest. They all did something and had something that the others did not. This is why they were so remarkable.

I am lucky that I am able to do several things in life well. Some I do very well. However, through this experience I realized that, for me to take my life to the next level, good and well is not enough. I need to stand out in whatever area I want to take to a higher level. For example, I am a good teacher. My students learn and generally enjoy my classroom experience. However, in order to excel as a teacher, that can’t be good enough. I need to ask, what can I do to make this experience memorable and at the highest level possible?

I love to write, and believe I am a fairly good writer. However, it is my goal to stand out and touch thousands of lives a day. In order for that to happen, I need to stand out in some way. I need to constantly ask myself and others how I can do that. Only in that way can my writing be its absolute best and positively impact as many people as possible.

I challenge you to do the same. What is it that you want to excel at? What part of your life are you seeking to be truly remarkable? To make it happen, find out how you can stand out. What can you do that others can’t?

You may be wondering, “how can I answer that question”? I certainly don’t have all the answers. What I usually do is pray for divine guidance. God has all of the answers. He can and will direct you if you need help. Ask in prayer what you can do to stand out. If you truly seek answers they will come. Then act on the inspiration you receive and make it happen. Keep in mind that, especially when you pray and invite God into the equation, you are actually inviting His light to shine through you. All you have to do is turn on the switch. When you let His light shine, people will definitely notice as His grace is manifested. Another thing that works is to seek answers online through articles, other blogs, and videos. It’s amazing how much you can find out from others with the same concerns and goals.

My daughter and her group performed very well. They were good enough to move on. However, they didn’t because there were other groups that simply did more to stand out. If you don’t already know, please realize you have many talents and many things you can do well. If you are seeking to make your life remarkable, I challenge you to figure out what to do to stand out. Then do it. I have much more focus on this challenge of standing out and letting the Spirit of God manifest through me. I will say that it’s a fun challenge, and I invite you to enjoy it as well.

I would appreciate it very much if you would share what works for you and how you stand out in a particular area. I am sure there is plenty of valuable information and assistance I am leaving out here. It would certainly help other readers if there is any input you can provide. Many blessings : )