Monday, November 30, 2009

ASKing is easy...waiting is not

This thought just hit me while I was taking a shower...of a truth, ASKing is easy, at least easier than waiting to receive, find or have the door opened to you. As we draw closer to the end of the year, I look back to the different things I either worried about and/or wished for...and there are some I prayed about/for and I'm still waiting for the answers.

While pondering on this thought, I had a quick flashback to when I was praying for a husband...I wanted to get married really early and felt (and expected) God will make it happen. Well, I then had to wait...longer than some of my peers and at the same time not as long as some other peers. As God will have it, since He makes all things beautiful in His time, I was found - by the best man ever...yes he is! Let's get back to the subject...

The point here is that in order to truly win over worry i.e. worry about nothing and pray about everything, we need to "contend" with waiting and be contented while waiting. It's a definite part of life - look at your life: at one time or the other, you have waited (or are waiting) for something - a job, a new job, a husband/wife (just in case men read this blog), a car, a new car, a new outfit, a child, another child, a new home...the list is endless just as our needs are and our needs are as different & unique as we are.

I just feel we should encourage ourselves in the Lord with His Word - now is a good time as any. What verse comes to your mind when you hear the phrase "wait on the Lord"? For me, Isaiah 40:31 (which we'll discuss separately) comes to mind. There are a lot of other scriptures on that subject so I've chosen a few...

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Learn from the Eagle

In reading and researching about eagles, I remembered that over the years I’d received some really nice pieces on Eagles (glad I saved them…for me – never knew I’d ever blog…that’s God for you again)

I’ll share some of the tips I gleaned…you may or not have seen these before just remember, I’m not the author and I don’t know who the author is. I’ve put some changes/additions to the original email and highlights in green and added italics for emphasis.

PRINCIPLE 1
Eagles fly alone at high altitude and not with sparrows or other small birds. No other bird can go to the height of the eagle - they fly the farthest and do it with minimal effort - see Principle 4 belowEagles fly with Eagles; associate with Eagles to become one.


PRINCIPLE 2
Eagles have strong vision. They have the ability to focus on something up to five kilometers away. When an eagle sites his prey, he narrows his focus on it and set out to get it. No matter the obstacles, the eagle will not move his focus from the prey until he grabs it. Have a vision and remain focused no matter what the obstacle and you will succeed.

PRINCIPLE 3
Eagles do not eat stale things. They feed only on fresh prey. Vultures eat dead animals, but eagles will not. Be careful with what you feed your eyes and ears with, especially in movies and on TV. Steer clear of outdated and old information. Always do your research well. Also watch your eating habits - you become what you eat...eating at home always trumps eating out - healthier for your body and pocket.

PRINCIPLE 4
Eagles love the storm. When clouds gather, the eagles get excited. The eagle uses the storm’s wind to lift it higher. Once it finds the wind (i.e. the eye) of the storm, the eagles uses the raging storm to lift him above the clouds. This gives the eagle an opportunity to glide and rest its wings. In the meantime, all the other birds hide in the leaves and branches of the trees. We can use the storms of life to rise to greater heights. Achievers relish challenges and use them profitably.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Sheep vs. Sleep

There is a common saying: “when you can’t sleep count sheep”…I don't know the origin of that saying. I'm guessing it was advice given to distract people from worrying. Belive it or not, I've found the solution to sleeplessness (& it was never a secret)...it's an amazingly simple solution too & one size fits all.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Creatures & Christians

Have you noticed the different creatures God likens Christians to? The ones that come to mind are: Lion, Sheep/Lamb & Eagle…and they are not in any particular order.

Proverbs 28: 1 - We’re to be as bold as lions; Jesus is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah

Psalms 23; Psalm 100: 3; John 10: 1-16 – we are the sheep of God’s pasture; Jesus is the Lamb of God as well as our Shepherd.

Now the only one of the three I haven’t seen an exact biblical reference to Jesus is the eagle. God uses this bird to encourage us in so many ways. Have you ever heard of the “place of first mention” principle in Bible study? One of my former pastors taught us about it…He said that the place of first mention on any word or topic in the bible usually sets the context. With that a the back of your mind, let's look and see the first place the word “eagle” was used in the Bible.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

More Spiritual tips from Shopping trip

Two more similarities between shopping & praying and then on to some of the differences...
#6. People can shop and pray on your behalf; however, to get the "right fit" of some things e.g. shoes, when you go shopping yourself and try it on. I guess you know what I mean - especially if have that "right-foot-challenge" like I do (the lady in the picture seems to have the same challenge too). This is especially true with how much sizes vary from country to country and even from store to store in the same country. So, just as you sometimes need to go to the store to get the right fit, praying for yourself by yourself enables you tell God "where the shoe pinches" - just as you would at the store (if you're there in person). Irrespective of how well-intentioned others are, no one can pray for you better than you can pray for yourself.

#7. Shopping is available to all - indeed it's not the exclusive preserve of anyone. Anyone can pray...if they choose to. To be women of prayer (& power), we need to decide and do!

We could go on and on with the similarities; to balance this out, let's switch gears and discuss a few differences:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Glad to Give

Giving is good ...it is a wellspring of blessing for the giver...the Bible says so over and over again - see:

It is more blessed to give than to receive." (Acts 20:35)

Albert Einstein said: “The value of a man resides in what he gives and not in what he is capable of receiving.”

Ever noticed that the hand of the giver is usually above?

Now that doesn't mean that you are superior to those you give to...it just means that agree with John D. Rockefeller Jr. who advised: "Think of giving not as a duty but as a privilege."

Monday, November 23, 2009

Keep A.S.K.-ing

Let me guess...you may be saying to yourself: "she sure does like acronyms"…pretty creative too huh? Well, what can I say, I’m just like my Heavenly Father – you’ll see how in a moment when I share what He told me A.S.K. means.

Some time ago, while reading Matthew 7:7 in the King James Version, it just “came to life”:

Ask, and it will be given to you;
Seek, and you will find;
Knock, and it will be opened to you.

You see what I mean? Acronyms are God’s idea for helping us commit things to memory – He started everything…

Answers to our prayers sometimes come swiftly or slowly. At yet other times…well it seems like it’s taking forever for the answers to come through. I’m convonced that’s why God gave us those 3 levels of “ASKing”.

I’ll share my understanding of these 3 levels…you may not agree and that’s fine. Please share your own understanding with us – let’s learn from each other.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Spiritual lessons from Shopping trip

It’s so amazing how God constantly uses physical things to teach us spiritual truths when we look, listen and learn. Shopping is not one of my favourite things...ask my husband and those who know me well. Grocery shopping is enough work as it is. In order to go shopping for clothes and other things, I need to really “prime” myself – so I have the stamina to stay the course; and this includes window-shopping.

Well this weekend, I needed to go shopping – possibly the first time I have really had to go shopping – yes I promised my husband I would so I did – the price of integrity.

The first thing that hit me when I was going through the racks is that: prayer and shopping are very similar. I’ll share some nuggets God shared with me...

# 1. Both of them have a window of opportunity...whereas, prayer has a constant window of opportunity (i.e. God is always available to us) we can’t say the same thing about shopping. Let me explain: before I embarked on my shopping trip (indeed it was a trip – it’s the first time in my life I’ve ever done something like that too), I prayed for favour and guidance. I also prayed that God will lead me to the right stores where I’ll get what I need at an acceptable price for the quality I want. The first store I entered had an amazing sale on, which I later found out was their “one-day spectacular sale”- no wonder there were so many people there – including me who was totally oblivious of this event. I went there just in time – it was my window of opportunity.

Purpose in Prayer


Although “Prayer can never be in excess” (C. H. Spurgeon), for our prayers to produce results, they must be "prefixed" by the Word of God...once we know Him & His will, we will pray accordingly.
We must pray on purpose and with purpose.
The first purpose of prayer is to know God. Charles L. Allen

  1. We look upon prayer as a means of getting things for ourselves; The Bible idea of prayer is that we may get to know God Himself. Oswald Chambers


  2. “Prayer is not monologue, but dialogue. God’s voice in response to mine is its most essential part." Andrew Murray


  3. Prayer honors God, acknowledges His being, exalts His power, adores His providence, secures His aid. E. M. Bounds


  4. The goal of prayer is the ear of God, a goal that can only be reached by patient and continued and continuous waiting upon Him, pouring out our heart to Him and permitting Him to speak to us. Only by so doing can we expect to know Him, and as we come to know Him better we shall spend more time in His presence and find that presence a constant and ever-increasing delight. E. M. Bounds


  5. "No learning can make up for the failure to pray. No earnestness, no diligence, no study, no gifts will supply its lack." E.M. Bounds


  6. "Prayer is not learned in a classroom but in the closet." E. M. Bounds

Stop rocking in that Worry chair...

“If you ask what is the single most important key to longevity, I would have to say it is avoiding worry, stress and tension. And if you didn't ask me, I'd still have to say it.” ~ George F. Burns (American comedian and actor; 1896-1996).

Now if you don't want to believe a comedian, who lived to be a 100 years old, take it from a doctor: Charles W. Mayo, M.D. "Worry and stress affects the circulation, the heart, the glands, the whole nervous system, and profoundly affects heart action."

Take rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop. ~Ovid

Each time I've been awake "rocking in the worry chair", I wake up tired...almost too tired to do what I need to to deal with the situation. There's just no point in staying up worrying...won't you agree?

Don't let your mind bully your body into believing it must carry the burden of its worries. ~Astrid Alauda Jesus has already offered to do that in Matthew 11: 28-30:
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good--not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne. (Amplified Bible)
Take Him up on it...you'll be glad you did.

God will never give you anything you can't handle, so don't stress. ~ Kelly Clarkson

God always equips us for everything that will come our way...He's promised us triumph* in trouble in John 16:33

"I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]" (Amplified Bible)
Is everything as urgent as your stress would imply? ~Carrie Latet

"When you find yourself stressed, ask yourself one question: Will this matter in 5 years from now? If yes, then do something about the situation. If no, then let it go." Catherine Pulsifer

These are 2 good questions to ask and the answers will get you out of that "worry chair"...in a heart beat. Rocking chairs are a great way to relax and rest...the place to do nothing...and enjoy it too. Let's do as David did: "I have set the LORD always before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad and my spirit rejoiceth; my flesh also shall rest in hope"** - not be rocked or stressed by worry. God bless you.


* See Isaiah 43: 1-3 and 1 Corinthians 10:13
** See Psalm 16: 8-9 -21st Century King James Version

Stay connected to the UPS

Just this morning, God reminded me that He is my UPS...that's a truth I have held on to for some years and I'm not letting go of it.

Do you know this song:
Rejoice for the steps of a righteous man 
They are ordered of God, they are ordered of God
Rejoice for the steps of a righteous man
They are ordered of God
In the time of trouble, God will uphold you,
God will preserve you, God will sustain you
In the time of trouble, God will lift you up
So rejoice your steps are ordered of God


I believe the origin of this song is Psalm 37:23
The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD, And He delights in his way. (New King James Version)

The steps of a [good] man are directed and established by the Lord when He delights in his way [and He busies Himself with his every step]. (Amplified Bible)

Friday, November 20, 2009

Power in Prayer

In writing on PiP, I decided to "dig for the diamonds" in what others have said about prayer...I’ll share some of them in a series of postings...

Dorothy Bernard said that: "Courage is fear that has said its prayers." That word "Courage" comes up again...so really, there is nothing odd about being fearful…it’s what you do with that fear that matters. You know what I do? I talk to God about it...and that's essentially what prayer is - a conversation (not monologue) with God.

"Prayer is weakness leaning on omnipotence." W. S. Bowd

Oswald Chambers said: "We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties."

We all need Courage to lean on God in prayer; and be able say like Josephine Baker did “I believe in prayer. It's the best way we have to draw strength from heaven.”

The bottom line is that: “All prayers are answered if we are willing to admit that sometimes the answer is "no” (Anon)

Here are 10 other thoughts on prayer…

Have I ever told you...

...how awesome God is? 


Well, He is...


Our God is an awesome God
He reigns over heaven and earth
With wisdom, pow'r and might
Our God is an awesome God


Now that's a song I recommend you learn and sing often if you don't already do so. You know, the Bible recommends that we make a melody in our hearts (Ephesians 5:19)…I also like to sing out too…amongst other things :)
Before I go off on a tangent, let me tell you what happened yesterday...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Just ASK

Let me tell you a bit of what’s been happening to me in the past week.

Remember I got this leading to share about “Worry” a week ago, well I was also (& still am) working on getting out of the “worry chair”. I was challenged by the things God helped us put together for the blog and of course it was time for this physical physician take the prescription.

I also shared about how we need to be careful about what we wish or mentally hope for…

Well, putting these together, God reminded me that the best way to “win over worry”(WoW), is to “persevere in prayer” (PiP).

Ok, I’ll change gears here for a bit and come back on track later…

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Words on Worry

I've chosen a few of my favourite words on worry from the Word of life and matched them with the words of (wo)men...


Matthew 6:34
So do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own. Sufficient for each day is its own trouble.
(Amplified Bible)

So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
(New Living Translation)


Worry doesn't help tomorrow's troubles, but it does ruin today's happiness. ~ Anonymous


Proverbs 12:25
Worry weighs us down; a cheerful word picks us up. (The Message)

Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy. ~ Leo F. Buscaglia

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Grace to Give

For the mighty, even to give away is grace. ~ Aeschylus

We have talked about the Courage to Give and the Gift of Giving…not very easy to digest and/or live by but if you ask me, these are coming at an appropriate time as we prepare for Christmas – the Season of Giving....and it was totally unplanned. I guess that's the beauty of letting God guide you in whatever you do...life has so much more meaning that way - Isaiah 30:21 is one of my favourite verses; look it up and see what you think.

Back to the subject...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Careful what you wish...or mentally plan for

When packing for a recent trip, my husband and I were discussing the number of books I should take...I packed 5 knowing I had long flights ahead of me and he recommended that I take 3. So I took the following:

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Win over Worry

There are two days in the week about which and upon which I never worry... Yesterday and Tomorrow. ~Robert Jones Burdette

Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy. ~Leo Buscaglia

Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday. ~Author Unknown
Question from Sapphire: so was it worth the worry?

A day of worry is more exhausting than a day of work. ~John Lubbock

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Gift of Giving

Like Babara Bush said, everyone has something to give. I appreciate that giving is not the easiest thing especially when it costs us...and believe me there are times when it costs and "hurts" too. Let's start with the "easy" ones.

To me, smiles and hugs seem like the easiest things to give - it's just tough when you're not particularly in the mood to. About smiles, I heard that it takes more muscles to frown than to smile (& it's also more difficult too)...well those sound like good reasons to smile. The best thing about smiling is that "everyone smiles in the same language" (Anonymous). You don't need to know the people you smile at - have you noticed that each time you smile at people, more often than not you get a smile back - even if it is a plastic one. "The act of smiling is a gift that gives a little piece of joy & sunshine to brighten another's day." (Anonymous)      
Smiles go on for miles...purpose to start the "smile tag" each day...pass on your smile.

On to hugs: I love hugs...I give them without thinking sometimes. Hugs are usually a form of greeting between relatives and close friends. (Personally I believe the friends God had given me are "hugs from God"). At other times, a hug just tells the other person, "I care" or "although I don't understand what you're going through, I'm here for you".

Hugs mean different things to different people - and one size fits all. Per the Quote Garden: "a hug is a smile with arms, a laugh with a stronger grip". Start with a smile, it suffices for those you don't know well enough to hug.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Why worry when you can pray?

“Worry is like a rocking chair - it gives you something to do but doesn't take you anywhere.” This is one quotation I have held onto for decades – of course, I forget it once in a while. As I was meditating on it this morning, I decided to find out who the author of that quote was as I’d never known all these years…and guess who? A woman:
Dorothy Galyean*

I know, from personal and current experience, that it’s not easy to stop worrying – it is possible though. It is being "care- less" (i.e. without a care) - God wants us to be "care-less" – He says so more than once

Psalms 55:22:
"Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.
(New International Version)

1 Peter 5:7:
God cares for you, so turn all your worries over to him.
(Contemporary English Version)

Consider living by this principle:
“Worry about nothing - pray about everything”

- it will make a significant & positive difference in your life.

The Message version puts Philippians 4:6-7 this way:
“Don't fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”

Let’s do what another woman does: “Every evening I turn my worries over to God. He’s going to be up all night anyway” ~ Mary C. Crowley

So why lose sleep when God doesn’t sleep? Even I wonder why I do that at the times I catch myself still awake. Now, no one has said it will be easy but this quote from Mahatma Gandhi is quite an admonition: "There is nothing that wastes the body like worry, and one who has any faith in God should be ashamed to worry about anything whatsoever."

Need I say any more? I'll leave you with a song I learnt as a child - which is more relevant now to me (feel free to make up a tune for yourself):

Why worry, when you can pray,
Trust in Jesus and He will lead the way.
Don't be like Doubting Thomas,
Keep trusting on His promise
Why worry, worry, worry, worry,
When you can pray.

God bless us all as we switch gears from worrying to praying.
Reference:
*http://www.walkoutofworry.com/wisdom.html

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Tale of Two Women

Have you watched the film "Julie & Julia"? I had the opportunity to watch it recently. I laughed and learnt a lot too - here are a few of the life lessons I gleaned.

Julie Powell finally had to Courage to Live and pursued her passions - after being encouraged by her husband to follow her dreams...and then she became so self-absorbed and obsessed. It ended up being a counter-productive venture...that's not the idea of being confident and courageous enough to dream, decide & do

Irrespective of whatever your dreams are, you must always have your priorities right...your first priority is your husband not your family... yes, husband before children - if you disagree, we'd love to hear your reasons.

The minute Julie Powell got her priorities right everything else fell in place...

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Shoebox

Talking about love...this is from an email...author unknown (comments in green, mine)

A man and woman had been married for more than 60 years. They had shared everything. They had talked about everything. It pays to marry your friend.
They had kept no secrets from each other except that the little old woman had a shoe box in the top of her closet that she had cautioned her husband never to open or ask her about.
For all of these years, he had never thought about the box, but one day the little old woman got very sick and the doctor said she would not recover. In trying to sort out their affairs, the little old man took down the shoe box and took it to his wife's bedside.


She agreed that it was time that he should know what was in the box.

When he opened it, he found two crocheted dolls And a stack of money totaling $95,000. He asked her about the contents. 'When we were to be married,' she said, ' my grandmother told me "The secret of a happy marriage was to never argue." She told me that If I ever got angry with you, I should just keep quiet and crochet a doll.'

The little old man was so moved; he had to fight back tears. Only two precious dolls were in the box. She had only been angry with him two times in all those years of living and loving. He didn't consider how long it took her to crochet one doll...I wonder if she kep crocheting until she cooled off?

He almost burst with happiness. 'Honey,' he said, 'that explains the doll, but what about all of this money? Where did it come from?' 'Oh,' she said, 'that's the money I made from selling the dolls.' I can't imagine how much each doll cost?


So what should those of us who don't know how to knit or crotchet do? Come to think of it, I used to knit and crotchet years ago...hmm wonder if I should reevaluate what I do in my spare time...


This one of those pieces that we smile (& some smirk) at when we read. There as lots of things and tips to takeaway from this piece...for me (& hopefully for all of us), one of them is that it is possible to redirect anger productively...and possibly make money too :).


This could very well be someone's "trigger" to consider starting their own business. Now if you do, you'll need to have the self-confidence and internal motivation to continue the business and not let anger be your "driving force". You could start earning money from one of your hobbies too...just an idea.


Another takeaway, is for me to do all I need to to make my marriage work and flourish. Bishop David Oyedepo says, you're not married to see if it will work...you're married to see (i.e. ensure) that it will work...and it's a 2-way street and ties in to the Courage to Love - the woman in the story sure had that Courage. My personal desire (& prayer) is that from now and in years (& decades) to come, the story of my marriage will one filled with WoW moments underpinned by Courage to Love amongst other things. AMEN!!!


Friday, November 6, 2009

Secret #3: Courage - (3) - Courage to Love

Courage to Love
So what is it about Loving that requires courage? Hm...good question. Not sure if we can fully answer that question - so will just share some of my TEA - (thoughts, experience and advice).
A long time ago, before I got married, I heard someone say that "love is acting in the other person's best interest". Talk about a tall order!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

And on these...

Some more from the same unknown author (pictures and comments in green, mine)

Ideas won't work unless ' You' do.


Your mind is like a parachute....it functions only when open...

The 10 commandments are not a multiple choice. They are summed up in 2 commandments hinged on "Love" and there so we can all have a better and happier life.
The pursuit of happiness is the chase of a lifetime!
The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts. Someone wisely advised: Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Watch your words, for they become actions.Watch your actions, for they become habits.Watch your habits, for they become character.Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”

If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it. Remember, we have stepping stones all through our lives. If you haven't, get and read "Who moved my cheese?" Dale Carnegie said: "Develop success from failures. Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success."
It is never too late to become what you might have been.

Life is too short to wake up with regrets. Get on with doing!!!

We don't need more strength or more ability or greater opportunity. What we need to use is what we have.~ Basil Walsh

Think on these...

Just got it in the mail-Author Unknown (picture and comments in green, mine)

Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle. Proverbs 31:26 "She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness." (King James Version) Now that's another one of the verses I'm working on implementing in my life.

A sharp tongue can cut your own throat. Remember, the tongue has the power of life and death (Proverbs 18:21)

If you want your dreams to come true, you mustn't oversleep. Taking that a step further, someone wisely said: "When we wake up in the morning, we have two simple choices: Go back to sleep and dream, or wake up and chase those dreams. The choice is yours..."

Of all the things you wear, your expression is the most important. And this is a result of internal impressions - see previous series on Self-confidence...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Courage to Give

Closely tied to the Courage to Live is the Courage to Give. I know this was not on our original list...it just came up. We cannot properly discuss Courage to Live without at least touching on the Courage to Give…

I know this may not be some ladies’ favourite topic…remember we’re here to make ourselves better people!

Looking around and at ourselves (ok, at myself), it’s as if so many of us live our lives taking all we can. It truly takes courage, not abundance, to give. Anne Frank* who died at age 15 said: “No-one has become poor by giving.” This may have been from her personal experience and that is so true.

The Bible says in Proverbs 11: 24-25:
There are those who [generously] scatter abroad, and yet increase more; there are those who withhold more than is fitting or what is justly due, but it results only in want. The liberal person shall be enriched, and he who waters shall himself be watered. (Amplified Bible)

Luke 6:38 and Act 20: 35 reiterate this. I’m almost convinced that was why John D. Rockefeller advised: “Think of giving not as a duty but as a privilege”. The giver always ends up “on top”.

Ask a farmer - I wonder if Anthony Norvell who said “Plant a kernel of wheat and you reap a pint; plant a pint and you reap a bushel. Always the law works to give you back more than you give”, was one. If he wasn't one, he sure knew about the principle of sowing and reaping...one we should all understand and latch on to.

Winston Churchill said: We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.

Ultimately, “it is every man's obligation to put back into the world at least the equivalent of what he takes out of it” (Albert Einstein)

Let’s start with simple ones…and of course progress

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Secret #3: Courage - (2) - Courage to Live

Courage to Live


What does that phrase mean to you? Even I wondered when I felt led by God to put it on the list of areas we'll focus on in discussing this Secret.

We already know that courage is all about being brave and bold in the face of adverse situations - now, who said that is or will be easy? Let's dig in...we're sure to come up with some "Destiny diamonds".

As women, too many times we let things happen to us or watch things happen to us rather than make things happen for us. Irrespective of the hurdles we face – which we all (will) face, we need to be courageous enough to make things happen in favour of ourselves and those in our sphere of influence.

Hard things are put in our way, not to stop us, but to call out our courage and strength ~ Anonymous

Ladies, any and all the stumbling blocks you have in your way should be seen for what they are - "Stepping stones." Stepping stones are "stones placed across a shallow river to form a step-stone bridge so people can step from each to the next and so cross the river without getting their feet wet"* So in fact, stepping stones are your path for "walking on water".

Walking on water huh? Think about it, if you need to get across the river/sea - any piece of water - you sometimes just have to go...whether the water is calm or not. I implore you to take Mark Victor Hansen's advice: “Don't wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful.”

This piece feels like it’s all over the place…I guess that’s how life is - isn't it - juggling various balls and wearing different hats? The bottom line is:
Courage to Live is about:
  • daring to dream and doing what you need to to make those dreams come true; "to accomplish great things, we must dream as well as act."***
  • being a path finder, a trail blazer and stepping up to the plate to "make an obstacle an opportunity."****
See what someone who definitely knows what he's talking about said: "All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them" ~ Walt Disney.
One of my pastors used to say: "after all is said and done, more is said than done." “Well done” is always a better praise than “well said”. Get on with doing...

YOU can do it! Yes YOU CAN!! Believe it and Live it!!! Decide & do!!!!
It takes courage to live up to your dreams - it takes courage to conquer!

References:
**http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stepping_stone
** John 16:33: I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] (Amplified Bible)
*** Quote by Anatole France
****Quote by Linda Armstrong

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Secret #3: Courage - (1)

Secret #3: Courage: Courage means acting decisively, even while taking risk, in whatever way God directs you. Make decisions by design rather than by default. Courage is not one of those things that "just happens"...it needs to be developed, demonstrated and even tested consistently.*

Encarta defines Courage as: "quality of being brave: the ability to face danger, difficulty, uncertainty, or pain without being overcome by fear or being deflected from a chosen course of action."**

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language defines Courage as: The state or quality of mind or spirit that enables one to face danger, fear, or vicissitudes with self-possession, confidence, and resolution; bravery.***

So courage starts in the mind; obviously, this is by no means easy...we all need to be courageous. By God’s grace, together will help each other cultivate and maintain:

  • Courage to Live
  • Courage to Love
  • Courage to Lead
  • Courage to Learn
  • Courage to Lean
  • Courage to Leave
The list is not in any order and is by no means exhaustive...just the starting point...

Before we start sharing our TEA, let's consider a few words of wisdom I found on the Internet: