Life is what you make of it. The old saying that life is 10% what happens and 90% what you do about it is spot on. I’ve always thought of myself as a glass-half-full kind of person, but I need to do better. In order to implement all of the self-improvement plans I’ve blogged about this week, I need to change my ways of thinking. I’ve got to set my sights high and reach for what now looks impossible. A little confidence and positive attitude goes a long way, and combined with prayer, God will reveal in my life exactly what I’m supposed to do and what path I’m supposed to take. Everything that’s meant to be will work out in the end.
Pastor Rick gave a profoundly impacting message at church this morning. It was all about forgiving those who have wronged you in the past and appologizing to those you’ve wronged yourself. I think everyone has both of these situations in their lives with at least one person, and I’m no exception. I generally don’t hold grudges against anyone, but there are one or two people who I need to apologize to for certain things. They’re actually mutual situations so I hope that by being the bigger person and reaching out to them to apologize, they might, too. But even if not, it will still make me feel better to right the wrong.
God forgives us for our sins by coming into a relationship with His son, Jesus Christ, and He commands us to do the same to others. He proclaims that there is nothing more essential in life than loving other people, and that’s essentially the basis of Christianity. That being said, I have a bit of work to do to make things right again in my life with a few people.
I’ve been doing a whole lot of deep thinking lately, especially yesterday. I could write a full-fledged post on each topic, and I might do that with some of these at a later date, but I just wanted to share what’s been running through my head over the past week or so. These are all randomly-ordered questions, ponderings, discoveries, and thoughts I’ve had.
– You can’t change other people. You can only change yourself and be a positive example for others to follow.
– When you put God at the center of your life, everything else just falls into place exactly the way it’s supposed to.
– If you try to do too many things at once you won’t get anything done at all. Focusing on one thing will get you a lot farther.
– Why is it that practically everyone I know is in a relationship now, and all over the course of the past month?
– I’ll be getting to that point in a few years when everyone I know is starting to get married, and man, that seems unreal. When did I get to this age?
– I’ll be twenty in July? Twenty? Two decades down. Wow.
– I finally know exactly what I want and that I am once again ready to be in a relationship.
– Am I only good enough to talk to or does she (come on you didn’t think you were actually gonna get a name, did you?) actually want something more with me?
– Why am I always second best, and how do I change that?
– Sushi from the VCU Commons is great at the beginning of the week, but practically a biohazard by Friday.
– I need to nail down what I’m doing this Summer job-wise, and really soon.
– I need to decide on my major for sure by next Fall. Graphic Design, Mass Communications, Film, or Business?
– The old saying is absolutely right: If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
– Running is a great stress reliever.
– Change is constant and life is fluid.
– There are two options: Get in the game or be left behind.
– I need to spend less money on eating out, and that would also help me with my goal of getting in shape.
– I’ve got an incredible group of friends who are more supportive, caring, and genuine than anyone else I’ve ever been around in my life.
– I need to stop making this list and go get ready to head to VCU for my second-to-the-last day of classes.
Glad I got all that out. I feel a lot better now! Comment and share your thoughts.
A friend of mine showed me this video clip yesterday and it was so incredibly powerful it brought me to tears. It literally sends chills down my spine. It’s amazingly impacting. Watch for yourself and see if it doesn’t do the same thing to you. It’s all about a girl’s struggle with so many things that took her away from the unwavering love of Jesus. She’s pushed down by so many negative influences, but in the end she realizes He is always there with open arms to take her back and make her new again. We’ve all done this and I have certainly done this myself, and it’s the most incredible feeling in the world to know that God is always there to catch you when you fall or go astray.
You can check out the video below. It’s done to the music of the Lifehouse song “Everything.” Please give it a watch. I promise it will be well worth your time.
It’s 4:45 AM and I’m up writing because I just can’t sleep. Something’s bothering me and I can’t figure out what exactly. I know bits and pieces of it, but not the entire thing, hence my writing it out to try and get a handle on what it is. Part of it is the fact that I just feel like a hamster spinning on a wheel lately. Why? Because I have so many different projects running (web projects, personal projects, etc.) that I just can’t seem to get finished. I can start fifty of them but can’t ever finish one. Two examples I can think of at the moment are my Downtown Short Pump website and the Deep Run Marathon Dance DVD I need to have completed soon (that one will get done because I have a deadline, but I’m having a hard time getting around to it for various reasons).
The other reason I can’t sleep is I keep having these dreams lately that my life is completely stagnant and not going anywhere. I just woke up from one. Well, I suppose they aren’t exactly dreams, but rather subconscious feelings I have as I sleep because I still feel them for a while when they wake me up during the night. It’s hard to describe, but it’s this feeling that my life is two-dimensional and I’m just going through the motions, doing insignificant, meaningless things just because they’re part of a routine or something. It’s driving me insane at the moment trying to figure out the root of these feelings because they’re not an isolated chain of thoughts. I know the fact that I’m going absolutely nowhere isn’t completely true because I have some things going for me right now, but I have this nagging discontent that I just can’t seem to shake. I really need to figure it out.
One more thing is that everything in my life feels so fluid right now. Sometimes it feels like I’m on one of those moving sidewalks, like at the airport. I’m moving on down the line while everyone and everything else goes on by, or vice versa. Either way I feel out of place in my own life and the worst part is I can’t figure out what I need to do to change it.
It’s not like I’m necessarily searching for something of greater meaning in my life beyond the temporary thrills, because I have really focused on putting God at the center of my life more than ever in recent days. It really is true that by doing that, many of life’s problems seem to be less complex. At the same time, however, I don’t think I’m where I need to be.
There are also moments when I have these very satisfying feelings of thinking I’m just a few steps away from being where I need to be and being totally content in my life, but once again I don’t know what it is I need to do or change to get to that point. It goes much deeper in some ways, but as open and transparent as I am about my personal life, that’s as far as I think I can take it on my very public blog. There’s just only so much you can say without unintentionally offending certain people (and that could happen because sometimes you can’t judge someone’s tone by reading words on a screen as opposed to having a face-to-face conversation).
These are all things I’m going to pray about and ask God for guidance with in my life, as well as talk to other people about. I just thought that if I was awake and couldn’t sleep, it might help to write it all out. At the same time, though, if you’d like to offer up any suggestions via a comment, please do so as it would be much appreciated.
Look around. Mother Nature’s biggest gift to us all this time of year (ha) is out in full force. It’s nasty. It’s yellow. It’s all over everything. It’s tree pollen. Ever since I was a little guy, I’ve always hated Spring because it means one thing: pollen. I used to be so allergic to it that I’d barely be able to function this time of year. I had all sorts of nasal symptoms, not to mention I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t sleep, and the likes. I’ve always wondered why we can be so allergic to something so natural that God put here on this earth, but I digress. But this year I’ve (knock on wood) been fine. Someone told me this is because every seven years your allergies change. Something to do with cell regeneration? I don’t know. I know nothing about that kind of stuff. But someone comment and enlighten me.
Anyway, the stuff is still nasty. It’s all over my car, in my room after I had a window open just one night, it’s turned one of my black cats yellow who just goes on our screen porch, and on and on. It’s everywhere. Of course it rained off and on for two weeks straight but as soon as the pollen came out we don’t get a drop. We need a good soaking rain to wash this crap away!
It’s today that we celebrate that Christ, who died for all of our sins, rose again. Take the time today to remember and celebrate all He has done for all of us and in your own life personally. But it really is something to be joyful about. I know it’ll be a party at RCC this morning at the services (and when I say party, I mean that they really get into it, even more so today than usual, and it’s very impacting and powerful)! Happy Easter, everyone!
This past week, Pastor Rick started his first message about the Christmas Season. The first message was all about giving. He talked about how much giving to God blesses you. One of his points was that you can’t outgive God. He’s talked about this in the past in other messages, and told numerous stories about how people who thought they didn’t have the money to give still gave, and how their lives were transformed and how God provided for them. I am without a job as of last Friday, but after hearing this message, I’ve decided I’m still going to tithe and give to the annual Christmas Offering next week because I’m faithful that God will help me to find another job soon.
Well it’s Turkey Day. I’m off to Home Team Grill in a couple hours to help serve Thanksgiving meals to the elderly and less fortunate with church, then to the family dinner at my cousins’ house. I just wanted to take a few moments to say what I’m thankful for.
First and foremost, I give the utmost thanks to God for all he’s done in my life in the past year. He has blessed me with so much, taken care of all my needs, and helped me change myself for the better in many ways. He has also provided a way for me to use my talents and skills to help others reach Him through my church with the Impact Arts multimedia ministry. Through the church, I’ve also made some great friends such as Anthony and Tori.
I’m also really thankful for my family. People may come and go, but they’re the one constant that’s always there no matter what. I love them very much.
I’m very thankful for my best friend, Jen. She’s always there to talk to about anything, always keeps me entertained with her crazy stories, and is just an overall wonderful person to be around. Sometimes when nothing’s gone right all day I’ll hang out with her, if only for a few minutes, and my whole day is turned around. She has a way of doing that, and I love her a lot.
There are also so many other things I’m thankful for, but these are the top ones. I hope you’ll take some time today to really reflect and thank God for his blessings in your life. Enjoy your time with family and friends, and eat lots of good food!
P.S. – I’m thankful for all my faithful blog readers, too!
Yesterday was Friend Day at Richmond Community Church. Pastor Rick started a new series, “Influence That Impacts.” He had some interesting insights into how we are influenced by other people and how we influence them, as well. I took some notes during the sermon. Here are a few great points he made:
- “We become aware of what others’ influence makes us feel like, not how we make other people we influence feel.” This is so true. We all talk about how others make us feel, but we don’t often think about how what we do makes others feel.
- “It’s not where people are in their lives, it’s what they think they aren’t that holds them back.” Many people are held back by fear, especially fear of failure. Moreover, a lot of people think they can’t positively influence someone else’s life because of what they think they’re lacking or because of a shortcoming. I’ve experienced this before. We all have our downfalls, but we can still have a good influence on other people.
- “Your influence is determined by the choices you make.” If you’re going to have a positive influence on someone’s life, you need to make smart choices and set a good example.
- “There are three types of people, generally speaking- Well Poisoners (those who discourage others from reaching their goals), Lawn Mowers (absorbed in themselves), and Life Enhancers (positively influence others).” This pretty much summarizes people’s personalities if you think about it. People are either going to bring you down or uplift you, or just not care at all and tend solely to their own self-advancement.
This is going to be a great message series, full of insights about how to reach, connect with, and influence others in your life.