Keep Your Eyes Open to See Success

There are a lot of people out there that love to complain.  They complain that life has dealt them a bad hand and blame fate for their problems.  They complain that they can’t get ahead in their career and blame others for their lack of success.  They complain that nothing works out for them and blame just about anything they can.  Sometimes they complain loudly, other times they complain quietly.  But often, they don’t blame the party that’s responsible for their lack of success: themselves.

Sure there are times when you truly have been dealt a bad hand.  There are events that are totally outside of your control.  But we can always control our response to those influences, and we can always change some aspects to adapt to those that we can’t change.

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“Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty; open your eyes, and you will have plenty of bread.” Proverbs 20:13 ESV

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We Can Learn a Lot by Watching Nature

There’s a saying, it’s been around for quite a while, that idle hands are the devil’s workshop (sometimes play things is swapped in here).  The exact origin of the saying isn’t quite known, but the phrase has stuck around for centuries.  And it’s often taken the wrong way.

Be productive by following the ant

“Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise.” Proverbs 6:6 ESV

Fortunately, we have many other sources of wisdom other than a vague notion that the devil is using our hands when we’re not doing anything else.  Let’s consider for a moment what is meant by idle hands, the ant, and the art of being productive.

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An Argument for the Quest for Knowledge

In 2013, American adults read 12 books.  Actually, half of them read fewer than 5 books, and half of them read more than 5 books with the average number read by any given adult sitting right at 12.  That comes out to one book per month.  Each year I make it my goal to read at least 12 books on top of any journals, articles, posts, or newspapers.  If I hit that average, I am reading more than most Americans do.

If American adults are already reading as much as they do, why is this titled “You Need to Read More”?  There are a variety of reasons, and they stem from a quote in a book I recently finished.

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“Whatever in creation exists without my knowledge exists without my consent.” The Judge, page 207 in Blood Meridian

As a human, you should have a thirst for knowledge.  Many Americans have a thirst for knowledge when it comes to celebrities, friends, and family.  They want to know what’s going on.  But when it comes to more practical matters, they couldn’t care less.  They allow things to exist, function, and act without their knowledge and without their consent.

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What Overflows from Your Heart?

I recently finished reading the book “Thinking for a Change” by John Maxwell.  If you have a chance, I highly recommend it.  It walks through 11 different forms of thinking that people seem to ignore, and encourages everyone to think in order to inspire the change they want to see in their life.

What really stood out in the book, however, wasn’t the thinking.  It wasn’t the forms of thinking, how you can get your life together, how you can promote your business, or how you can grow as a person.  Those were all great concepts that I’m working into my life.  What really stood out was his recollection of a conversation with a friend.

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8 Concepts to Keep Your Focus

If you’re like me, you can easily become distracted.  You plan your day, you schedule everything out, and then you end up spending 37 minutes cleaning up your desk instead of working.  Then you have to use the bathroom, and as long as you’re up you might as well get some coffee, and you’re a little hungry so you grab something to eat.  Then you notice that the mugs aren’t quite straight, so you get them in order.  The next thing you know, you’re 7 projects behind.

Maintaining your focus on what matters takes a lot of self discipline.  It can be tough, especially if you work from home.  Fortunately we do have some guidelines.  And if you’re easily distracted by the garbage that is found online (Facebook newsfeeds, cat video websites, adult sites, and the like) then this is definitely something you need to pay attention to.  8 concepts that you can meditate on in order to keep your focus on what you need to get done.

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Your Successful Career Starts with a Prayer

Whether you are working in a field that you love, or toiling away in a job that you don’t really care for, there’s a good chance that you want to experience success.  Naturally nobody ever sets out to fail; we all want our labor to end successfully.  But did you know there’s a way that you can make sure that your plans will succeed?

How to succeed at work

As we looked at last week, success doesn’t mean the same thing to everyone.  But when you’re ready to experience success, this is how it is done.

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Success is Easier than You Think

Success is something that many people chase after their entire lives.  They dream of fancy cars, big houses, bank accounts with more digits than their phone number, and all the luxuries that money can buy.  They read about success, the imagine success, and they sacrifice important parts of their lives because they are chasing after the elusive success.

The secret to success

But what if I told you that the secret to being highly successful is incredibly easy?  What if I told you it didn’t mean late nights “grinding”, or notices that your utilities were going to be shut off, or even that you had to be highly skilled.  Success, it turns out, is much simpler and easier than you think. More »

… Let Tomorrow Worry About Tomorrow

As humans, we tend to worry.  We worry about the weather; we worry about our finances; we worry about our loved ones; and we worry about worrying too much.  But how many of us have wasted a whole lot of time worrying?  And how much good has that done?

Don't Worry Trust God

“And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?… don’t be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.” – Matthew 6:27 & 34

Let’s take a closer look to see what we should be doing instead of worrying.

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It’s not Always Black and White

When it comes to sin, the Bible is clear what is and is not sin.  God sets a baseline for us so that we can strive for righteousness.  But what about those areas where it is gray?  Not the gray areas of sin, but the gray areas of what is righteous and what is not.

righteousness

“It is good not to… do anything that causes your brother to stumble.” – Romans 14:21

Keep in mind that this isn’t an endorsement to make excuses for sin.  It’s not a means of saying, “It’s ok if…” or “At least I’m not…”  This is determining when you should go above and beyond.

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… Do It!

The sermon at Emmanuel Baptist Church yesterday went through a passage in the book of James.  In the passage, James talks about being doers and not just hearers.  As I listened, I realized there are a lot of parallels to everyday life, not just in our spiritual walks.  The sermon applies to personal relationships, hobbies, business, and more.

be-doers-not-just-hearers

“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” – James 1:22

One that that tends to confuse people about this are the choice of words used.  Directly translated they make sense, but if we understand the words and how they were used in the original language, it opens up quite a bit more to the passage.

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