Category Archives: Enlightenment

Prioritizing Your Priorities!

I reached up on the book shelf above my creative desk and pulled one of the leather journals down to take a glance. As I fingered through the pages, among the scriptures, gratitude lists and task, my eyes fell onto a heading labeled My Top Ten Priorities. I smiled, because I can vaguely remember making the list and also because I feel like I maybe have made a little progress over the last five years. I thought I would share the list with you, in the hopes that it might encourage and maybe even inspire you to think about your own…

“For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.” -2 Timothy 1:7

MY TOP TEN PRIORITIES:

1.) ADVENTURE – Life is not supposed to be boring and it’s really not boring, if we are paying attention. There are amazing things happening everyday all around us. People to see, places to go, experiences to have and life to enjoy. I think one of the greatest lessons I have been learning is that everyday is an adventure, if I’m ready, willing and able…

2.) BALANCE – This is one of those lessons that we always know we need to learn, but always seem to have a hard time learning. We may get it right for a day or two and then before we know it, BAM – it’s all messed up again. This is not a “one and done”, this is a work in progress. But balance is very important if we want to keep from drowning in this life…

3.) FAITH – This has always been foundational to me, even in the times when it is not high on my priority list, because I am nothing without it. Believing in God and that He has a plan for my life is vital to everything else falling into place. Without this, nothing else works…

4.) FAMILY – The old saying is: “You can’t live with em and you can’t live without em” And most of us have discovered this to be very true. I love my family, immediate and extended. As different and crazy as some of us are, I really wouldn’t have it any other way, because our crazy is our normal and it’s really a pretty sweet blessing…

5.) FUN – All work and no play will make you boring and bored. Every now and then, we have to let our hair down and enjoy ourselves. Sometimes we need to run out and dance in the rain or maybe go jump in the lake. We need to enjoy ice cream, hot chocolate and a good joke. When was the last time you laughed so hard, your belly hurt???

6.) GROWTH – Whenever we stop growing, we begin dying and it is often a slow and agonizing thing. My greatest growth seems to have taken place over the last few years. The older I get, the more I realize and understand just how much I don’t know that I thought I did know…

7.) HEALTH – Three areas are important: Physical, mental and spiritual. If we don’t take care of all three and work to enhance all three, we will become sick and our quality of life and living will be impacted in a very big way. There are very simple, but powerful things we can do to be healthy in all three areas and we need to make sure that we are doing our part.

8.) WISDOM – You can have all kinds of education, knowledge and learning and still be a fool. Have you ever met an educated fool? Wisdom is the proper us of knowledge. We not only need the knowledge, but the common sense to use it in meaningful and productive ways…

9.) SERVICE – God gives to us so that we can give to others. When we take the gifts and talents God has given to us and share them with others, God is glorified and we all are blessed. Ministry really is what makes the world go round…

10.) PASSION – To me this is love on fire! God is love and we are made in God’s image, so we are to be love to. Love is not something we say. Love is not even something we do. Love is what we are, if we are being what we were created to be. If we are love, then the doing and the saying are taken care of…

A Majority Of One!

It is hard to recognize the world we are living in now a days, because it has become so destructive, disillusioned and divisive. We look for things to disagree on and grab hold of things that will drive a wedge between us and others. We walk around with a chip on our shoulder, praying someone will try and knock it off, so we might have a chance to knock them off. It has gotten down right ugly and doesn’t look to be turning around any time soon.

The really sad thing is that we see this in places that it used to never be expected. We see it in churches, families and friendships. Now a days it seems the least little thing can become bigger than life and destroy what it took years to build and develop. In the Bible, we find Jesus praying for just the opposite for those that chose to follow Him. He prayed that we might be in agreement, unified and together as one. He knew that we are stronger together than a part.

“20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” -John 17:20-23

There is great power in our getting past our differences, which are usually not really a big deal anyway. Division is a tool of the enemy used to keep us a part, so that he can deplete us of our resources and sap us of our strength. This leads to our being broken with very little hope of recovery on our own. The real tragedy is that all of this work to block the blessing of God from flowing into and through our life.

It has never been a part of God’s plan for us to attack one another. It has never been God’s agenda for us to go to war with one another. God does not want us bickering, fighting and quarreling with one another. God wants us to come together with Him and with each other, so that we might be one united relationship of supernatural power that can face and overcome the worst the devil and this world has to throw our way.

Below Are Five Suggestions For Doing Your Part To Help Us Come Together As A Majority Of One:

1.) Look For And Yield To God’s Will! This means letting go and laying your will aside, so that you can pick up God’s perfect will as your guiding light and purpose in life.

2.) Deal With Your Own Challenges And Sins! My Grandmother used to say: Sweep off your own porch, before you start trying to sweep off someone else’s.” The truth is that we all have our on battles to fight and once we fight and find victory in ours, then we just might be ready to help others with there’s, not because we are better, but because we are learning.

3.) Practice Humility! If you really want to get good at something, then you need to practice all the time, over and over again. We need to practice humility, because just when we think we’ve got it, we usually get proud of ourselves and blow it!

4.) Be An Encouragement! Everyone needs some more positivity and less negativity in their lives, so why not start with yourself. If you will start, then you might encourage others along the way and at some point you will need someone to encourage you.

5.) Embrace Reconciliation! To reconcile is to become one, regardless of our differences. The truth is: What unites us (JESUS) is stronger than anything that can divide us.

I encourage you to do your part and promise that I will be trying to do mine!

Lessons I’m Learning!

I guess I am probably at least to the half way point of my life or at least very close. Some people call this half time, which means I could possible have a third and fourth quarter left. Some see our lives broken down by the four seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall And Winter. If that’s the case then, I am probably coming out of my Summer and into my Fall. The one thing that seems to be becoming more and more real to me is the learning of lessons and the importance of learning the lessons. When I was younger, the older folks tried to tell me, and while we may listen, most of us have to learn for ourselves and we tend to insist on doing it the hard way.

Through the living of life and in the experience of hard fought battles which culminate in exciting and great victories or bitter and depressing defeat, we are shaped into who we are ultimately become. It is during this times that lessons are learned if we are wise enough to pay attention and learn them, so that one day in the Fourth Quarter Winter of our life, we can share them with the young bright eyes that are thinking to themselves: “I’ll show you!”

“For the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity.” -Proverbs 24:16

The greatest lesson I have learned is that I am still learning and so below I will share a few of the lessons I have learned and that I am learning along the way as I journey through this life.

1. You Are Responsible For You! We like to think we can change things and change people, but the only thing you really have the power to change is yourself and if you are honest with yourself, then there is plenty that needs changing, so open you lift, mind and heart to the supernatural and allow yourself to grow beyond yourself. It really is a never ending amazing journey.

2. Time Is A Precious Gift! When we are young, we think we have all the time in the world. It seems like it takes forever for Christmas to get here, but as you get older is seems that Christmas comes sooner and sooner each year. Don’t waste time, make your time count. It is a gift that we each have a limited amount of and once it is gone, it cannot be replaced.

3. Failure Is Not Final! We are raised to believe that failure is a bad thing and we are embarrassed whenever we fail, but most of the great things that we know, the things that have changed our lives, would have never became reality, if someone had not been willing to fail again and again. Take your chance and give it you best shot. Failure is simply learning another way that won’t work, which gets you one step closer to the way that will work.

4. Don’t Miss The Now! Now is what you’ve got. Yesterday is over, so learn from it and move on. Tomorrow is not promised, so don’t waste your time worrying about it. Today, right now, this moment is what you’ve got, so make sure that you make it count by getting the very most out of it.

5. There Is No Such Thing As One Size Fits All! What works for someone else, may work for you and it may not work for you. The reality is: Whatever advice, direction or instruction you’re given, you have to figure out how it works with you, because you are unique and special. This is why it is so important to get to know yourself, who you are , what you believe and why it matters to you.

6. Instinct Is A Gift, Don’t Ignore It! Some people call it a gut feeling, some call it intuition, some call it a sixth sense. Whatever you call it, you can’t afford to ignore it. Live you life long enough and you will discover that your instincts are better than you’ve been led to believe. You are continually taking in information, without even realizing it and just when you need the guidance, you gut steps up to try to help you make the right decision.

7. Gratitude Is Best Expressed Through Appreciation! God has blessed you with so much, but if you don’t appreciate it, then you could very easily wake up one day to find it all gone. Relationships are a very special gift and should never be taken for granted. All people have something to add to your life, if you are willing to take the time to discover the treasure. Show your gratitude through your attitude of appreciation.

Like I said: In no way am I an authority and I have not fully learned all these lessons, but I am learning them. This of course is not all the lessons, just some from the top of the list that I have been learning and that has impacted my life, living, blessing, success and victory. I encourage you to think about the lessons you are learning and share every chance you get, because it not only makes your life better, it allows your better life to make the lives of others better too…