Focusing on The Meaningful

January 6, 2022

In the past few days, I have seen several messages about a particular topic. You know what that means. God is talking to me again. He is trying to remind me of something. This happens a lot when I am in close contact with Him.

I am being reminded that the circumstances of life, my successes and failures, the ups and downs of this world are not what really matter. What does matter is the love of God. I am being reminded to focus on God, His love, and His kingdom. That’s what means the most. And the ironic part is that, when I focus on God and His kingdom, presence, and righteousness, the other things all fall into place. The circumstances are positive. There are far more successes than failures, and far more ups than downs.

I’ve already seen the positive benefits since I’ve refocused on the meaningful. When I see and focus on God in others, the relationships are good. When I feel God’s presence in me, I feel a wonderful peace that matters far more than any circumstances.

I am not saying that life doesn’t matter. We have every right to celebrate the great times and mourn the bad. However, what matters so much more is the inner world. God’s presence is in you and with you. Place your focus there and you will experience heaven on earth more often than not. I know from experience this is true. Enjoy the blessings 🙂


Two Words to Help You Find Joy

January 4, 2022

One of the main goals people have is to experience joy in life. For some, it is easier than others. One of the greatest questions is how and where to find that joy.

People seek joy in many different places, such as life experiences, relationships, money, and careers just to name a few. Another question is, why do so many people have a hard time finding joy? I have learned and been recently reminded again, that it’s because they are looking in the wrong places for it. I have often been guilty of this myself.

So how and where do we find this joy that is so often elusive for so many? I can sum it up in two words…. Look inside. Look inside what? Look inside you. It’s so simple. In fact I believe it is too simple, which is why so many people miss it. There are verses all over the Bible that state that the spirit of God is in you. Since that spirit is in you, it is a part of you. You are in union with it! And one of the fruits of that spirit is joy.

You don’t have to go looking for joy. It is already in you and already part of your being. You automatically carry joy, along with the other fruits of the spirit such as love, peace, self-control, etc. with you wherever you are.

Knowing you are already the joy you are seeking, the challenge is to switch your focus. Instead of seeking joy, let the joy that already are shine out from you. How do you do this? There are many ways. What has worked for me is to focus on that joy in me, and also to focus my thoughts on the good in everyone and everything else. Another idea is to watch your thoughts. Remove any thought that interferes with the joy that is already part of you. Doing this follows the Biblical advice to take each thought captive. Feed your mind with joyful thoughts. Ones that are good, noble, and praiseworthy, which is another bit of Biblical advice. Remove the ones that have the potential to cloud the light of the joy that is in you.

I realize that this is a very simple, and basic post. However, as I mentioned before, this concept does not have to be complicated. Remember that joy is already yours. You already have it and are it. Instead of seeking it, let it shine forth brightly from you, without any interference. The Bible says it is God’s will that we are joyful always. Why not follow this advice and deliberately experience this joy that is a part of all of us. Enjoy the blessings 🙂


God is Doing Something New…For You!!

December 30, 2021

As I did my Bible study this morning, I was lead to this inspirational reading… “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it”? This is from Isaiah 43:19. Another version says, “Behold, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs forth; do you not perceive and know it and will you not give heed to it”?

I’ve read this verse many times, and it has always inspired me. However, it especially did today. As mentioned in my previous post, I am feeling very optimistic as we end this year and begin the next one. This verse confirmed my optimism! I feel like God is telling me to continue in the direction I am going. He is telling me that He has already begun the great work in my life, and it is up to me to see and seek His blessings.

The same is true for you. God is ready to do a great thing in your life. He promises that! I challenge you to see the great things He has already done, and to look out for the blessings that are coming next, knowing He always comes through.

If you are looking for a bit of optimism this year, I hope this can help. God can and will do a great work in your life. He has actually already started it. Can you see it?


Merry Christmas and a Hopeful New Year

December 29, 2021

First of all, to those that celebrate, a very Merry Christmas!! I’ve been away from this space for a while, though now finally have some down time to return to what I love to do..writing!

I’ve enhanced my knowledge significantly in the past few months, and feel the desire to share. I am also hoping to apply this knowledge to make 2022 an excellent and rewarding year.

Do you ever feel that you are on the verge of amazing things happening? That’s how I feel about the start of this new year. As long as I work hand in hand with God, allowing Him to call the shots and moving in the direction He has me go, I know I will experience greatness this year.

I certainly hope your hope and optimism for this coming year is very high as well. Know that God is with you, and follow His guidance. You will experience greatness as well. Enjoy the blessings 🙂


The Importance of the F Word

March 12, 2021

During the past few weeks, I continue to be shown the significance of the F word. It is very important that I place my attention on it and use it as much as possible. The reason is that…

OK, stop it! I am not talking about THAT F word. I know you were thinking it. Seriously, I try to avoid thinking about and using that other F word. I’m sorry, I should stop now before this blog post becomes cursed. Anyway, there is another word that I keep being reminded of. I’ve written about it, I’ve heard sermons preaching it, and it has been part of almost every reading material I’ve come across in the past few weeks (do you think God is trying to drive it into my head and asking me to share?).

That magical F word is focus. Focus on what? It’s come up several different ways. Mainly, the discussions have been about focusing on positive thoughts. Focusing on whatever is “true, noble, right, lovely and admirable” according to Philippians 4:8 in the Bible. Focusing on who God says I am, not the false thoughts that I have or others may have about me. Focusing on the good in everyone else. Focusing on the fact that God is constantly working for my good. Focusing on the fact that in God I have all things, and all things are possible.

That’s a small sample of where my focus and your focus should be. Another reminder with this and why it is so significant is that what we experience in life is a direct reflection of what we focus on. If we focus on those things I mentioned, we experience situations and circumstances that back them up! If we focus on what’s wrong or what’s missing, that is what we will continue to experience. It’s such a simple formula. Yet so many (and I certainly add myself so many times) try to do things the hard way by trying to change the circumstances instead of the mental focus, which is the root of the problem. I’ve said it many times, but this is so liberating to me because it gives me full control! No one in this universe except for me determines my thoughts. It’s all in my control. Only you control your thoughts. It’s simply a matter of controlling your thoughts (remaining focused on them) and then letting the circumstances play out accordingly. If you like the thoughts, you will like the circumstances!

So keep reminding yourself of that F word… FOCUS! Constantly check in with your thoughts, to make sure they are high quality, just as you want your exterior life to be. The more you do it, the easier it gets, and the more rewarding your life will be. Enjoy the blessings 🙂

 


You Can Quickly Realize Your Heart’s Desire

February 12, 2021

What would you say your greatest desire is today? I’m sure it’s a question you can answer quickly and easily. We all have things in life that we desire. That’s a good thing. We should get excited to think about our greatest desires. The problem is that sometimes people actually become disappointed and depressed when discussing their greatest desires. That’s because they focus on the fact that they don’t have it yet. I certainly understand because I’ve been there myself. However, what if I told you there’s a way to see your desires realized sooner than later?

I will start by saying that sometimes God purposely makes us wait for our greatest desires to be realized. That could be because the timing isn’t right, or possibly because He has something even better in store for us. However, there are many times where I believe we can make the decision that helps speed up the process. I believe often times God is waiting for us to make that decision.

I was doing a Bible devotion recently and came across a verse I’ve read many times. However, it never really got my attention this way. The verse is Psalm 37:4. It says “take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Another version says to find your delight in the Lord. Then He will give you everything your heart really wants. My favorite translation sums it up perfectly…seek your happiness in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.

For me, the key is in that last translation. We as humans tend to seek our happiness from external things. In some ways, there is nothing wrong with that. God has created things on this earth for us to enjoy. I love my family and other things like sports, music, oceans, etc. The problem with that is that all of those “things” can somehow disappoint. My favorite sports team lose. Sometimes the ocean gets rough and destructive. Sometimes the people in my life that I love disappoint me. The bottom line is that, no matter how much I love some people and things in my life, they are not perfect. They cannot always guarantee happiness. On the other hand, when I put my trust and joy in the Lord, He never disappoints. Ever!

There lies the key to quickly realizing your heart’s desires. First and foremost, seek your happiness in God. Spend time in His presence. I recently wrote an article about increasing your joy in life. I wrote that the key to increasing your joy is increasing the amount of time you spend recognizing and enjoying God’s presence. This Bible verse is saying the same thing. When we truly seek and enjoy the presence of God, our joy increases. And God promises that when we do that, He will give us the desires of our heart. And here’s another great thing about this. I believe that when we spend quality time in God’s presence, our desires line up with His will. And when your goals and desires line up with His will, that’s when prayers are often answered sooner than later. God also promises that when we seek Him first, all things are added unto us. We don’t have to worry about how we will get things. We are already taken care of as long as we focus on God first.

Once again I will say that I believe your greatest desires can be realized quickly. The dictionary definition of delight is to take pleasure in or to give joy or satisfaction to. When you take pleasure in what God has already done for you, and you experience joy and satisfaction in spending time with Him, He will bless you! Not only will your greatest desires be realized, but I believe God will bless you way above and beyond what you would even expect. So whenever you can, instead of seeking joy and satisfaction in the external things, seek them in His presence instead. I firmly believe you will see your desires realized sooner than later. Enjoy the blessings 🙂


Please Forgive Me For Being Selfish

February 5, 2021

Happy New Year to all of my faithful readers! As I write this, it is the first week of February, and this is my first post of 2021. In fact, it’s my first post in several months. I really have no excuses for my lack of writing. No major stressful situations going on, even though that potential certainly exists in today’s world. I can’t even say it’s because I can’t think of anything to write because there is plenty to talk about, especially for what I usually write about.

So why haven’t I been writing? As I thought and prayed about this, I was convicted in a major way. I realized it’s because I am just being selfish. My writing gap comes at a time where my readership on this site has grown to the highest level than I’ve ever had. I’ve also received many compliments about how these articles have been a great help to some people. So why stop writing now? I think it happened for several reasons. One is that I still have a tendency to let doubt creep in. I think thoughts like, how could anything I have to say positively affect people? No one cares what I have to say. Can I really help anyone? I not only allow those thoughts in but act on them by procrastinating on my writing instead of listening to God’s voice who says that, since what I have to say is coming from Him, it can have great impacts on people.

I also tend to let laziness get in the way. I do not function well in the cold dark days of winter in Western New York and tend to get a bit down emotionally during these months. Still, I need to stop using that as an excuse and stay active. Writing is one of the ways I can do that.

So once again I will apologize for being selfish. Perhaps some people don’t think my writing is good or helpful. Perhaps it is difficult to become motivated to write. However, I feel like God is telling something. I regularly ask Him how I can be used to make a difference in this world while I am here. I believe He is reminding me to use the great knowledge He has taught me, and make myself available for Him to use me as a vessel to communicate His love, peace, and truth. It’s not up to me to decide whether I am worthy or good enough for a task. It’s just a matter of being obedient. So now I am getting my typing fingers ready, and seeking to communicate what He wants me to say. I am so sorry to keep you waiting. More to come very soon 🙂


Make It Subconscious

October 21, 2020

Last week I was watching an interesting sermon. The pastor was talking about the power of God, and how most people are aware of His mighty, miracle-working power. However, the pastor added that, even though almost everyone is aware of how powerful God is and that He can use that power to bless them, most people don’t live accordingly. Instead, they live as if they are fighting their daily battles alone and relying on their own strength. Obviously, that makes things much more difficult for them.

I can’t sit here and tell you honestly that I always spend my life relying on God’s power. There are still days where my focus is on the problem, obstacle, or the work that has to be done. Instead of being aware of God’s presence and relying on His mighty assistance that is right there with me, I forge ahead in my own weak power (or should I say lack of power). Over time I have learned though, that I don’t have to fight alone, and instead of just knowing of God’s presence and power, I am much more aware to let go and let God. Things seem to always work out perfectly when I do that, and that is no exaggeration. 

I have found that the key to not only knowing God’s power but having the awareness to make use of it, is to lodge His truth and His word in my subconscious mind. I have written other articles recently about Bible references to the heart, and how I believe when those writers talk about the heart, they are referencing the subconscious mind. I reference some of these Bible verses in those articles, but one is “as a man thinks in his heart, so is he” from Proverbs 23:7. This is one of my favorites because it verifies for me that whatever someone believes subconsciously is what they act out in reality. If someone believes deep in their subconscious that they are surrounded by God’s love and power, and have it accessible to them in all situations in life, they act on that belief. The result is a more confident, successful life. Even when negative or difficult situations come up, these people who have the subconscious knowledge of God’s protection, provision, and guidance always seem to get through them successfully. Another excellent proverb (3:5) is to “trust in the Lord with all your heart.” Again, when you have a deep subconscious belief that you can trust God with anything, you live your life more powerfully, and you lack the worry and fear that brings most people down.

I remind you once again that it is great to have conscious knowledge of God’s love, power, grace, and truth. But to really experience those things in your life, you need to make that knowledge subconscious, and deep in your heart. There are several ways to do this. My advice would be to find what works best for you. One way is to constantly affirm God’s word. Find Bible verses that resonate most with you and repeat them constantly during the day. A great time to do this is also at night, right before you are ready to fall asleep. That’s when affirmations and suggestions become subconscious more easily and without resistance. Another thing I like to do is, as I am saying these affirmations, to visualize God’s power around me. I also visualize the successful outcomes I desire. The good thing about that is, if I know and trust that God is involved in the situation, I can feel peaceful even if things don’t work out exactly as I anticipated. I have full trust that it will either work out the way I want or better! One other way to make God’s truth subconscious is simply to pray and meditate. The more you meditate, the more you automatically experience His presence. And God says throughout the Bible that you are always welcome to ask Him for guidance. There is nothing wrong in asking for His help in having His truth securely placed deep in your heart (subconscious mind). He would love to help you with that because when you live a more powerful and successful life, guess who gets the glory? That’s right. God is glorified when you prosper, and “He delights in the prosperity of His child.”(Psalm 35:27).

Remember, once you hold an idea as a subconscious belief, you will automatically act on it. That is how life goes. So don’t just know God and HIs power are with you. I mean, really know it! Make it so that it is a subconscious belief, and you will live in power and excellence during good times, and even difficult ones trusting God all the way. Enjoy the blessings 🙂


The Ultimate Compliment

October 12, 2020

One of my greatest goals in life is to make positive impacts in the lives of other people. That is one of the major reasons I have this blog. One thing I have realized over time is that one doesn’t have to work hard to make these impacts. In fact, there are times in my life where I felt like it was almost automatic. Here’s a situation to demonstrate.

I was at the annual Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto. This was a time in my life where I had become infatuated with the city of Toronto (it’s still one of my favorites today). I was raised on Long Island, so I never knew much about the city. Then I had gone to college about 3 hours away from there and had several opportunities to visit during my college years I learned about the city and fell in love with it. This was also a very exciting time for me because, since I had left college, I felt God calling me to move from Long Island to Buffalo New York. During this trip which was about three years after graduating, I was staying in Buffalo making final preparations for my move there. And of course one of the things that attracted me to Buffalo was its close proximity to Toronto!

Anyway, I was feeling great as I was in my favorite city with some great friends, and I felt very close to God as He was leading me in this period of my life. Here’s one part that really made it special. At the exhibition, a woman was handing out Christian tracks. She asked if I wanted one. I smiled and said yes. The woman looked at me and said, “you’re already a Christian, aren’t you? I can definitely tell.”

When she said that, I was surprised in a way. I’m not usually one who broadcasts my faith, even though I would consider myself to be a strong Christian. However, I quickly realized why she said that. As mentioned, I felt very close to God during that time of my life. This situation showed me that, during those closes times, He not only brightens my world but shines through me to brighten others as well. For me, it was the ultimate compliment that made my day. In fact, it might have made my year. Through my normal actions and just being me without saying anything, someone could tell I was a Christian.

Through this experience, I learned that I don’t have to work hard at letting God’s light shine through me. In fact, I believe this moment was so special to me because it showed me I can let the light shine through me in a way that is most comfortable for me. I’m not one that you would find handing out tracks or broadcasting my faith as I mentioned earlier. Instead, I prefer to lead by example. I like to work with the quote by St. Francis which says, “preach the gospel. And if necessary, use words.”

Through this experience, I realized that for me, you, or anyone else to make positive impacts on the world, the only real effort it takes is to remain close to God. Keep in close contact with Him, realize He is totally in control of our lives, and allow Him to take that control. Follow the advice in I Thessalonians 5 16-17 which provides a simple 3 step process to be joyful always, pray continually, and give thanks in all circumstances. People who study the Law of Attraction closely would say to keep your energy vibration at a high level. It’s the same idea. I believe they go hand in hand because the three concepts from that Bible verse are the highest energy vibrations of joy, gratitude, and closeness with God.

I know that all three of the above ideas were part of my being on that beautiful day in Toronto. I was full of joy. I was thankful that God was leading me. And as I mentioned before, I was in prayer with Him on a regular basis. I present these keys to you if you would like to effortlessly bless those around you. Please know that I am not saying it is wrong to proclaim your faith or to be someone that regularly uses words to preach the gospel or to affect people around you. We need you to do that! I am just saying that, if you want that blessing that I received of having someone know instantly that God’s light is shining brightly in you, it is as simple as the 3 steps above. Be joyful in all things. Thank God on a regular basis for what you have, and even for what He is bringing to you. And stay in contact with God on a regular basis and allow Him to lead you in your life. When you do this your life with be blessed in ways you can’t even imagine 🙂

 


I Want To Sleep Like Jesus

September 23, 2020

An interesting thing happened today. I was reviewing some old articles I had written in the past. I then realized I had some drafts of unpublished articles that I had forgotten about. I came upon this one that I began writing… in 2015!! The article was completely done, but I never published it. Usually when that happens, I believe it’s because God wants to use it for something. I guess it wasn’t supposed to be published until now, and perhaps you are the one who needed to see it! Whether that’s the case or not, I hope you enjoy it…

 

One of my favorite stories in the Bible is one where the disciples of Jesus are on a boat and caught in a violent storm. They are in a panic and are fearing that they will drown. Amidst the panic, they come to their senses and realize that Jesus can save them. But where is He? In the middle of this storm, they find Him in a corner of the boat…asleep! The disciples wake Him up and ask for His miracle-working intervention. Jesus wakes up, rebukes them for their lack of faith, and immediately calms the storm.

If I was one of the disciples, I am sure I would be wondering…”how could He sleep during this intense storm?” I am sure that is exactly what was going through their minds. However, Jesus challenged them. He asked them why they had such little faith and why they were so afraid. I also believe He provided an example of the faith He was trying to promote. There was chaos. A crazy storm that was about to destroy them. Yet He was sleeping soundly through it all. He KNEW that God had control of the entire situation, and all He had to do was say the word and the perilous situation would be overtaken by the wonderful peace that only God can bring.

As I reflect on this story, I realize that this is the faith I want to have. There will be storms around me. However, if my faith is strong enough, I can sleep peacefully, knowing God will rebuke the storm and bring peace. The same is true for you. You may think Jesus is asleep as the storms rage around you. If so, just wake Him up! Ask Him to calm the storm, and He will respond. Even if it doesn’t immediately disappear, He will provide a peace that only He can provide.

Jesus was able to sleep peacefully as the storms raged around the boat He was on. He had 100% faith that the boat would never come close to going down as long as God had control of it. That is faith that He shared with His disciples, and wants to allocate to us. Know that God is in complete control, and you will sleep like a baby 🙂