“The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation” (Henry David Thoreau). Don’t let that be you! People act out of desperation, pain, anger, fear, greed, desire, envy, necessity, inspiration and pleasure. Let’s raise our standards by taking initiative to dream big and do bigger, while tolerating nothing less than the best from ourselves. Be filled with hope, meaning, and purpose by embracing your vision, mission, why and how, in order to get your greatness out into the world, today.
During a Kari Jobe concert a man spoke about a young boy he observed while on a missionary trip. The child kept tiptoeing up to a volunteer missionary lady and saying, “Hola,” with a great big universal smile spanning from ear-to-ear while giving her monstrous hugs. The boy would hold the woman tight in his arms, while grinning extremely wide, day in and day out. He said, “Hola,” hugged her, smiled enormously large, and darted away. The boy’s behavior began to seem peculiar. Later, the volunteer missionary man found out through a translator that the boy had been bounced from one home to another, over and over, throughout his young life. From the ages of four through twelve, the boy fought to stay alive, while transiently living alone on perilous streets in isolated regions of South America. Finally, the young boy found a home where he became loved unconditionally and consistently, which gave him stability and hope.
“…Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty” (John 6:35 NIV). Nourishing our mind, body, spirit, and soul with truths and life-giving principles keeps our cups plentiful. Worry does not add life, peace, joy, health, wealth, love, or any good thing to anyone. Stop being anxious and let it go. Be grateful for everything, use it advantageously for good, and drive on. The road toward sunrises and sunsets are but one beautiful ride. Replace fault-finding with good-finding and change pessimism to optimism, therefore transforming your life.
“I am leaving you with a gift, peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27 NLV). Moreover, the pain and suffering that child endured and overcame instilled strength, courage, resilience, and compassion into the depths of his soul. The boy cried when the volunteer lady had to leave because she reminded him of his new mom whom loved and cared for him dearly. The boy was immensely grateful.
Furthermore, through World Vision, a 13 year-old boy from Ghana in need of sanitary water, food, shelter, education, and hope is being sponsored. I am not asking anyone for donations to this cause, although start someplace by giving a portion of your money, time, talents, gifts, skills or abilities to a mission, vision, and purpose you believe to be worthy. Ideally, 80% or more of your monetary donation should go strictly toward the helpful cause and not to overhead, such as administration and marketing costs. Investigate and choose accordingly. Giving not only shows that we care, but creates an abundance mindset that we have more than enough. The character built through giving is infinitely more valuable than the act itself.
“Don’t be misled, you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant” (Galatians 6:7 NIV). God knows our heart’s genuine intentions, therefore let’s purify our love with sincere wholesome purpose. We truly do reap what we sow, thus sow seeds of greatness, today.
“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant” (Robert Louis Stevenson). The art of living is sowing seeds of greatness, much more so than reaping. Let serving and giving be pivotal maps that direct decision-making. The byproducts of giving and helping others think, grow, and become their best is cosmically of greater value than monetary gains.
My seven year-old son says and lives by the motto, sharing is caring. We must give to get and receive to give, therefore, let’s start sharing what we have. We must not allow what we don’t have, stop us from giving what we do have. Much more is given back to us in return through acts of sharing, caring, and giving.
The act of genuinely caring builds trust in every relationship. Trust is the foundational glue holding, growing and building all types of relations between people. Don’t allow absence of college degrees, lack of any type of formal education according to societal norms, or any other self-limiting belief hinder you another moment from choosing to do good, right, and unleashing your greatness within.
Furthermore, speaking can be a form of sharing, while sincere listening consists of compassion. In the book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey writes that the gift of empathetic listening gives an individual psychological air. The goal of intentional listening is to be fully engaged and emphatically understand the person speaking; not focused on autobiographically or audibly responding.⁶ Let’s give people the gift of our undivided attention and attentive nonjudgmental ears.
“Ask the experienced rather than the learned” (Arabic proverb). Doing and experiencing something is much more effective than theory alone. Both successes and failures allow authentic compassion and understanding to stem from knowing pain and pleasure first hand. We can seek out mentors that have five to ten or more years’ experience than ourselves to facilitate beneficial guidance, advice, suggestions, and help toward acquiring our aims and overcoming life’s obstacles. Keep in mind that while seeking mentors, by rushing too quickly to the top, our questions might have been answered by people with less experience and wisdom.
Nevertheless, follow class acts and quality people only. Rid prejudices, looking for the good in others. Remember that we can learn from everyone, even if it’s what not to do. Books, podcasts, mastermind groups, and individual one-on-one in-person, telephone, e-mail, or internet platform mentorships can be very effective toward helping reach personal, emotional, health, fitness, social, relational, professional, financial, and spiritual goals. We can all teach each other valuable insights, promoting useful attitudes, behaviors, and leveraged environments (ABLE), in turn, furthering humanity for the better—one person at a time. Don’t worry about who gets credit, just give generously with heartfelt intentions.
Following is a story I once heard about embracing positive mental attitudes (PMAs) through divine transcendent lenses. A woman awoke one day and had only three hairs left on her head. She said, “Amazing, I can braid my hair today.” The next day she arose with two hairs and said, “Wonderful, I will part my hair down the middle.” The subsequent morning one hair remained. The lady said, “Outstanding, now I can wear my hair in a ponytail.” The following day the woman had no hair on her head. She said, “Thank God, I don’t have to style my hair today!” Our PMAs and perceptions impact our lives and circumstances profoundly. Positive attitudes truly can change everything.
“A dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it” (G. K. Chesterton). Stop concerning yourself with other people’s opinions (OPOs). Nothing great is possible without approaching life by pacifistically and relentlessly fighting back, hence forward for visionary ideals. Build your inner fight so strong that corruptible vulgar noise becomes silent impenetrable deafness averting lingering contact with your mind, body, spirit, and soul. Going against the tide, in time, flows naturally with ease. Do not sacrifice or succumb to fleeting short-term gains, forfeiting long-term mastery and perpetual profit. Begin joyfully living your passionate dreams, outside the box of conformity and comfort, today.