"If you go to a tree with an ax and take five whacks at the tree every day, it doesn't matter if it's an oak or a redwood; eventually the tree has to fall down."
"Write your goals down in detail and read your list of goals every day. Some goals may entail a list of shorter goals. Losing a lot of weight, for example, should include mini-goals, such as 10-pound milestones. This will keep your subconscious mind focused on what you want step by step."
"Working with people from all walks of life, from full-time moms to CEOs at large companies, I've distilled many universal truths about success. There's a secret I've learned that works quite well at helping you to achieve what you want: Decide what you want."
"Successful people maintain a positive focus in life no matter what is going on around them. They stay focused on their past successes rather than their past failures, and on the next action steps they need to take to get them closer to the fulfillment of their goals rather than all the other distractions that life presents to them."
Go big! There is nothing I dislike more than passive people that are constantly whining and pitying themselves and put the blame for their miserable life on others. People that have no fire or dreams and visions inside, that wait for others to provide for them and pull them out of the mud. What a life is that. Dare to go for the alternative: Life is a daily adventure. Go big! Dream big! Your dreams and visions should never bee too low. What's the point if you have a tiny goal and reach it - as opposed to having a huge goal and reaching "only" fifty percent of it - which is still way beyond option #1. Stop pitying yourself. If you keep on blaming others for what's going wrong in your life, there will never be any change or progress. You canl only change yourself. Other people usually are beyond your reach and responsability. Have visions! See yourself standing on top with the medal around your neck! Get the feeling for it and act as if you already have it! Don't be shy asking others for help. Most of all: Go new ways. Things will never change if you always do what you've always done. Don't be a copy of somebody else as everyone around you is already taken. Find your own way and learn to think and act completely different from everybody else! God has provided each one of us with passions and talents. Go for it! What do you have to loose - as opposed to the many things you could gain! And if you stumble and fall on your butt, get up again! There is nothing wrong with falling, but a lot with staying on the floor! Get into the ring and become a fighter! God needs courageous men and women who know what they want and are willing to give it their all to get it! Go big -and go now!!
"By taking the time to stop and appreciate who you are and what you've achieved - and perhaps learned through a few mistakes, stumbles and losses - you actually can enhance everything about you. Self-acknowledgment and appreciation are what give you the insights and awareness to move forward toward higher goals and accomplishments."
"I believe that people make their own luck by great preparation and good strategy."
"I generally find that comparison is the fast track to unhappiness. No one ever compares themselves to someone else and comes out even. Nine times out of ten, we compare ourselves to people who are somehow better than us and end up feeling more inadequate."
What I Have Learned
This is a letter D. wrote to us after having been in a Homosexuals Anonymous online-group for quite some time:
I have exercised a lot of self control for about six weeks and now in the past two weeks I have been inundated with knowledge. Some of it is encouraging and some of it depressing.
My wife's hurt and pain at my hands has been far greater than I realized. Some of that hurt may not ever heal. What healing will happen will take a long time.
I have learned that I am a sexual addict, that I have used sex like a drug to escape, that escape has caused shame and separation from emotional connection with others, which has created an intense need to escape which has led to a vicious cycle.
I have learned that porn is a false intimacy without the risk of real relationship.
I have learned that the appeal of risk free false intimacy comes out of a deep self loathing and an expectation of rejection and abandonment and that these expectations flow out of my interpretive memory of and lessons of my infancy and childhood.
I have learned that I have traded real intimacy with real people for false intimacy in the form of fantasy or porn or masturbation.
I have learned that the bible likens that to storing water is leaky cisterns.
I have learned that only Jesus can give me living water that satisfies.
I have learned that my emotional dependency is not an issue that originates in my father but in my mother.
I have learned that many of the things I am upset with my father about were decisions participated in by my mother.
I have learned that I have mother as well as father hunger.
I have learned that the emotional issues are going to be harder to deal with than the sexual issues.
I have learned that what I have done with friends is classical emotional dependence, it is destructive, selfish, manipulative, and just really really wrong.
I have learned it is a compulsion that is driven both psychologically and spiritually and I don't have a chance of overcoming it on my own.
I have learned that I may have strong sexual drive toward men for the rest of my life and may have to work really hard at controlling those urges and my lust for the rest of my life.
I have learned that I may have this deep need for someone (male) to love me (non sexually)for the rest of my life and as a result have to work hard to keep relationships balanced for the rest of my life.
What I have Learned
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.
I learned from my reaction to the testimony of one of the guys at group that if I had ever been offered an emotionally close friendship with someone and then that someone then wanted more, that I probably could not have resisted. I have learned that I long for that kind of emotionally close friendship where another guy pursues me. I have learned that I am a narcissist - that I want someone to worship me - and that I am sexually drawn to a person who looks a great deal like I looked at 18 - except for higher percentages of muscle to body fat and larger endowments. That may simply be the result of watching porn and seeking out idealized versions of myself. I have learned that I am deeply sensitive to the idea of rejection by any of the guys at group, far more than I would have imagined. I think this is deeply rooted in my desire to be emotionally dependent on another - to hand over to another power over my own sense of well being. To have someone be my mommy and hold and protect me and love me unconditionally. I have learned from the above that I long to be emotionally dependent on someone. I have learned that emotional dependence is arrested development much like homosexuality is but instead of arresting development at five or six or ten that it is arrested at about two with the kind of trust a child is supposed to learn from the mother never learned and so is infinitely more difficult to overcome. I have learned that what I really so intensely desire and truly need is a legitimate need - an emotional connection, intimacy with others, and that this is going to be really difficult. I need close satisfying healthy relationships in order to heal but I currently cant experience a relationship that is close enough to be satisfying and yet is still healthy. I have learned that there is a constant conflict in me between defensive detachment and emotional dependency. The former creates walls between me and others to protect me from being hurt while the latter causes me to abandon my autonomy and seek my meaning and purpose in some special "other". I have learned that emotional dependency for me sounds like Satan whispering in my ear. It is basically a lie that I believe about the other person, the situation, and what that other person can do for me and what that other person should do for me. That voice is beginning to be recognizable as someone other than my own voice or the voice of God. I have learned that I have had a twisted view about what normal guys achieve. I imagined that when a man falls in love with a woman that the emotions he experiences have the same intensity as my neurotically driven emotional dependency and the sex has the same intensity as my neurotically driven sexual addiction. I always thought that combination was the romantic ideal available to normal men. I think I now realize that would be crazy and a doomed relationship. I have learned that I have no idea what a healthy sexual or emotional relationship looks like, well I have an idea it is just that I don't see how it could be very satisfying. I have learned that it is a mercy that God did not zap me and cure the surface problem of SSA because I could never muster the courage and strength to deal with these other issues if God did. I have learned that I do have friends, good friends, more than one, and that although I constantly hear voices telling me these friendships are not what they should be I also know that they are very good and that almost all of the logical rational criticisms I have of those friendships are not rational at all but lies. I have learned that keeping those thoughts that my friends are not really friends of any quality but mere acquaintances is just as difficult a mental discipline as not having sexual fantasy. I have learned that when I am in really close fellowship with Jesus, where I sense His intimate presence and I experience that daily, none of this is really all that difficult to deal with, and when He is not present and I am not in close fellowship with Jesus that all this is impossible to deal with.
(used with permission)
one of the most important lessons I had to learn it here: it is not so much the end/the goal that counts, but the learning process.
If God would offer us freedom on a sillver plate, we would not appreciate its worth.
Through the long and painful process I had to go through He brought new friends into my life and gave me some incredible experiences. We simply have to go through it and suffer all the emotions and pain involved. Like Jesus had to suffer. If we follow Him, we have to partake in His suffering.
I am reminded of the story we used to hear when I was a kid about the frog whom had fallen down a well. Every day he would make great effort to climb out. He would gain so much then he would fall back a bit. But eventually, because he was determined to get out. he kept striving towards his goal and eventually made it out.
Christ knows that we will have days when we will fall back some. But He also is honoured and glorified when we make the attempt to strive forward towards the goal of being holy. And of course He is always there beside us to give us that extra boost, that extra nudge as we strive to be like Him.
No Spirit of Fear!
Sometimes life gets tough and we get down on ourselves and beat up on ourselves. Satan loves that because he sees you being defeated, then he works on you to believe the lie that God has abandoned you. Don't believe it. God loves you more than we can even begin to imagine. His love to us is immeasurable. If the scriptures are true and sure, and it says in scripture that He loves us and will... " never leave thee, nor forsake thee. " Heb. 13:5 (King James Version).
Satan will try to make you believe the opposite is true if you let him. Don't believe the lies and don't let yourself down by beating up on yourself. Trust Him whom is true and sure.
Yes, be a fighter, only losers quit. You are not a loser, for God made you in His image
"for in the image of God has God made mankind." Genesis 9:6 (New International Version, ©2010)
"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." 2 Timothy 1:7 (King James Version)
This morning driving down the highway on my way to church I noticed that the highway department had very recently painted the center line anew with its bright yellow markings. What caught my attention was not the newly painted center line, but the evidence of where drivers had crossed the center line (allegedly) passing other vehicles. Funny how fresh paint leaves evidence of misdeeds. It was quite apparent that both 4 wheel vehicles and transport drivers alike crossed the center line passing others on the double solid line and on curves.
I recently read where someone said that these markings and the posted speed limit signs are suggested speeds and suggested places to pass or not pass. Well although I might laugh at such a remark, it is no laughing matter at all. These markings and signs are there not for a suggestion, but for our safety. They are also unspoken laws for which we are to obey. Where there are solid double lines painted on the road, it is not a suggestion, it is the law. Why, because to pass another in these places is to take the risk of having a head on collision with another vehicle. They are there because there is not sufficient visibility to pass another especially near curves and or hills.
I do not know how many times I have seen folks disobeying and taking a chance passing at unsafe places. I have come close many times to getting involved in an accident because someone else was too impatient to wait to pass at another area where it was safe to do so.
In scriptures, God also has given us His laws to live by. These are not suggestions. These are laws. And likewise as above, they are there for our protection, for our safety.
Since the days of Adam and Eve, man has disregarded Gods laws and gone his own way as if God was only suggesting that we do as He says. Proverbs 14:12 spells it straight for us. It says: “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death”. NKJ When we disobey highway markings and road signs we are risking not only our own lives, but also the lives of others. Likewise when we disobey the ways and laws of God, we also risk our lives and the lives of others.
However, there is also one major difference between man’s highway laws and God’s laws. Whereas we can disobey the road signs, and perhaps get away with it because the law is not watching, when we disobey God, He sees all. You cannot get away with your sins. He may not punish you immediately or even within a year. But be sure you sins shall catch up to you.
“Behold, ye have sinned against the Lord: and be sure, your sins will find you out.” Numbers 32:23 b KJV
God will indeed visit your sins some day and you will indeed pay the price.
When we disobey the road laws we may get caught, perhaps pay a fine, perhaps do jail time. This is only a temporary punishment. But if you disobey God, the punishment depending on the situation could be eternal. Is it worth the risk of disobeying God? Eternal punishment is obviously not a temporary punishment. It is forever and forever and forever. That is a very, very, very long time.
Tell me, is it worth the risk of disobeying God only to face the possibility of eternal punishment, of eternal banishment from His presence in the furnace of hell, forever being tormented with no chance of relief from pain and torment? Is it worth the risk of facing God and having Him say to you; “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels” Matt.25:41 KJV We shall, to be sure, one day stand before God and give an account of our lives.
Perhaps your sins are not so severe. But still. If you continue in your sins, you will one day be punished and God will take away your portion of rewards. Is it worth the risk?
Which of the following will hear Jesus say of you?
Luke 6:22-26 King James Version (KJV):
“22 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake.
23 Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.
24 But woe unto you that are rich! for ye have received your consolation.
25 Woe unto you that are full! for ye shall hunger. Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep.
26 Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets”
Perhaps we shall be of those if we obey to whom it is said:
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Heb 12:1-2 (KJV)
“Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear” Heb. 12:28
As for me I would like to be receiving the good reward.
“And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” Rev. 22:12 KJV
So think about it. Is it really worth continuing on in your sins only to be found out and punished by a fearful God?
Hebrews 10 (KJV):
“10 For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect.
2 For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins.
3 But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year.
4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.
5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me:
6 In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure.
7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.
8 Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law;
9 Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.
10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
11 And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:
12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
13 From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
14 For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
15 Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before,
16 This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;
17 And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.
18 Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.
19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;
21 And having an high priest over the house of God;
22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)
24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,
27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.
28 He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:
29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?
30 For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people.
31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
32 But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of afflictions;
33 Partly, whilst ye were made a gazingstock both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly, whilst ye became companions of them that were so used.
34 For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance.
35 Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward.
36 For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.
37 For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry.
38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.
39 But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.”
King James Version (KJV)
"24 And Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel to Shechem, and called for the elders of Israel, and for their heads, and for their judges, and for their officers; and they presented themselves before God.
2 And Joshua said unto all the people, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood in old time, even Terah, the father of Abraham, and the father of Nachor: and they served other gods.
3 And I took your father Abraham from the other side of the flood, and led him throughout all the land of Canaan, and multiplied his seed, and gave him Isaac.
4 And I gave unto Isaac Jacob and Esau: and I gave unto Esau mount Seir, to possess it; but Jacob and his children went down into Egypt.
5 I sent Moses also and Aaron, and I plagued Egypt, according to that which I did among them: and afterward I brought you out.
6 And I brought your fathers out of Egypt: and ye came unto the sea; and the Egyptians pursued after your fathers with chariots and horsemen unto the Red sea.
7 And when they cried unto the Lord, he put darkness between you and the Egyptians, and brought the sea upon them, and covered them; and your eyes have seen what I have done in Egypt: and ye dwelt in the wilderness a long season.
8 And I brought you into the land of the Amorites, which dwelt on the other side Jordan; and they fought with you: and I gave them into your hand, that ye might possess their land; and I destroyed them from before you.
9 Then Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab, arose and warred against Israel, and sent and called Balaam the son of Beor to curse you:
10 But I would not hearken unto Balaam; therefore he blessed you still: so I delivered you out of his hand.
11 And you went over Jordan, and came unto Jericho: and the men of Jericho fought against you, the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; and I delivered them into your hand.
12 And I sent the hornet before you, which drave them out from before you, even the two kings of the Amorites; but not with thy sword, nor with thy bow.
13 And I have given you a land for which ye did not labour, and cities which ye built not, and ye dwell in them; of the vineyards and oliveyards which ye planted not do ye eat.
14 Now therefore fear the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the Lord.
15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.
16 And the people answered and said, God forbid that we should forsake the Lord, to serve other gods;
17 For the Lord our God, he it is that brought us up and our fathers out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage, and which did those great signs in our sight, and preserved us in all the way wherein we went, and among all the people through whom we passed:
18 And the Lord drave out from before us all the people, even the Amorites which dwelt in the land: therefore will we also serve the Lord; for he is our God.
19 And Joshua said unto the people, Ye cannot serve the Lord: for he is an holy God; he is a jealous God; he will not forgive your transgressions nor your sins.
20 If ye forsake the Lord, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he hath done you good.
21 And the people said unto Joshua, Nay; but we will serve the Lord.
22 And Joshua said unto the people, Ye are witnesses against yourselves that ye have chosen you the Lord, to serve him. And they said, We are witnesses.
23 Now therefore put away, said he, the strange gods which are among you, and incline your heart unto the Lord God of Israel.
24 And the people said unto Joshua, The Lord our God will we serve, and his voice will we obey.
25 So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day, and set them a statute and an ordinance in Shechem.
26 And Joshua wrote these words in the book of the law of God, and took a great stone, and set it up there under an oak, that was by the sanctuary of the Lord.
27 And Joshua said unto all the people, Behold, this stone shall be a witness unto us; for it hath heard all the words of the Lord which he spake unto us: it shall be therefore a witness unto you, lest ye deny your God.
28 So Joshua let the people depart, every man unto his inheritance.
29 And it came to pass after these things, that Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died, being an hundred and ten years old.
30 And they buried him in the border of his inheritance in Timnathserah, which is in mount Ephraim, on the north side of the hill of Gaash.
31 And Israel served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that overlived Joshua, and which had known all the works of the Lord, that he had done for Israel.”
32 And the bones of Joseph, which the children of Israel brought up out of Egypt, buried they in Shechem, in a parcel of ground which Jacob bought of the sons of Hamor the father of Shechem for an hundred pieces of silver: and it became the inheritance of the children of Joseph.
33 And Eleazar the son of Aaron died; and they buried him in a hill that pertained to Phinehas his son, which was given him in mount Ephraim."