If all else fails..

When someone asks what is my secret to always moving forward, this is what I tell them…

If all else fails, try again.

When most of my friends fail, guess what they do? They call me up and talk me through how badly they feel. As a good friend, of course, I listen and give my advice if asked.

Ring ring.

The next day, another call, I answer with optimism, waiting for them to tell me how my advice has changed there life around. Or how better they feel today?

Guess what? Im sure you know what im about to write before I write it.

They tell me the same story again.

A few weeks later. Im sure you get the point.

What’s their mistake? They get lost in the disappointment, the set-back, the worry, the doubt.

We all approach life’s difficulties differently, and who am I to say what is right or wrong but all that I can do is tell you how I deal with set-backs.

I Re-evaluate, change direction, and try again.

If I Believe, Why Do I Still Have Doubts?

doubt

At the moment, the world is in a panic because of an invisible enemy. But there is an even bigger threat that I see.

It’s the infection of doubt.

And if you haven’t caught it, you probably will.

Where ever you go you can see it on peoples faces; they look at you like a rabbit in headlights.

Doubt is not just a Christian experience.

It is a human experience.

So, the issue isn’t whether or not we’re going to catch the infection.

The issue is what do you do once you’ve got it.

How do you prevent this infection from ravaging your faith?

WHAT IS DOUBT?

Many people think that doubt is the opposite of faith. But it’s not. That’s a common misconception. The opposite of faith is unbelief.

And there’s a big difference between unbelief and doubt.

Unbelief is a willful refusal to believe. It’s a deliberate decision to deny God.

It’s making either a conscious or subconscious decision not to have faith.

But that’s not what doubt is.

Doubt is to be indecisive.

It’s to be caught between two lines of thought.

I doubt it

You want to believe that you won’t get coronavirus, but a little question rattles around your head, “but what if I do?”

Doubt will erode your faith. An very soon all your actions will be based on fear

A great biblical example of how doubt can affect you is in the story of John the Baptist.

He’s the man who pointed at Jesus and said,

“Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”

This is the man who baptized Jesus, and he saw the heavens open up and heard the voice of God say, “This is My Son, in whom I’m well pleased.”

He had incredible faith.

But what happened?

He gets arrested.

He gets thrown into jail.

There he comes down with the infection of doubt.

Now he’s not so sure.

Now he’s uncertain.

“Is Jesus really who He claims to be? Or should we be looking for someone else?”

Which is very like most people today.

4-5 months ago, they had a strong faith, but now that faith has been shaken. Church’s are closed. Without guidance, a lot of believers are lost.

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To resolve his doubt, John sent two of his friends to go check Jesus out and ask Him point blank the question,

“Are you the Messiah? Are You the one we’ve been waiting for to rescue the world? Or should we look elsewhere?”

So, his two friends go.

They track Jesus down, and they ask Jesus that question.

“And Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard. The blind receive sight. The lame walk. The lepers are cleansed. The deaf hear. The dead are raised up. And the poor have the gospel preached to them’.” (Luke 7:22)

 

In other words, Jesus is saying, “Go back and tell John about the evidence you have seen with your own eyes that authenticate My claim to being the one and only Son of God and that will renew his confidence and will bolster back up his faith.”

That’s what we must do also. Go back and look at all the times that God helped you in the past.

Them times when He made a way where there was no way. .

It’s human nature to have doubts but when we do we can’t let them doubts into our spirit. We must direct our attention to God and ask for him to strengthen our faith.

To help direct us through the storms in our lives.

Open up to God.

‘Lord these are the doubts I have.’

‘These are the questions I have.’

‘This is what I wrestle with, this is the area that I am struggling with at this time.’

In return He will reach out to you helping you come to a resolution and bolster your faith just as He bolstered the faith of John the Baptist.”

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Some People Have A Faith That Is Built on Feelings

They prayed for something in the past and received it. Maybe it was a job, a loving relationship, or financial security. Resulting in them feeling good.

They thank God and are happy.

Everything goes well for them for many years.

They praise God for all they have achieved.

Then this global pandemic hits, and they go from living a life of luxury to being in debt in 3-4 months.

They are distraught, but their first thought is not to turn to God in prayer. Asking him for help again.

No, their first thoughts are of panic, feelings of anger.

They want to find someone to blame.

Of course, some people will say— but look at all I lost. I had a beautiful house, three cars, two-holiday homes. Now I’m on the verge of losing it all?

Honestly, I don’t know the answer; I can only speak for myself.

When life is going well for me, I can get complacent, I overstretch. I go for that new loan when I know I’m already living beyond my means.

Materialism has a way of taking our attention off God.

It can become more important to impress our neighbours than God. Who gave us all that we have in the first place.

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Going forward

There is nothing wrong with having feelings of doubt or fear at this time, but you mustn’t give them thoughts a foothold. You must learn from any mistakes that you have made.

Everywhere you go now people are wearing masks and gloves for protection from a deadly enemy.

Can I advise you to also have a guard up for an infection even more deadly, the infection of doubt?

Some people have it bad; the only problem is you don’t need to be near them to catch it.

That friend that calls you every day telling you how the current outbreak is getting worse and worse.

They have it bad.

You must make them aware that you don’t need any more fear in your life. If they don’t respect your choice, I advise that you limit your time with them.

Too many negative conversations and soon you will be thinking like them, doubting that God will protect and provide for you.

We need to feed our faith, not our fear.

Pray every day.

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Connect with those that raise you up, that make you smile, that inspire you. That make you laugh.

We will all get through this difficult time.

And we will all be different on the other side.

Now is your time to mould the type of person that you will be.

The power is within your hands.

Be that voice of faith with those around you, and on social media. You may be, the only voice of hope and wisdom that someone hears all week.

Thanks for reading.

7 Wonderful Things that You Gain When You Let Go and Let God Take Control

let god take control

When you try to control too much, life becomes much harder to enjoy.  Sometimes you just need to let go and let God take control. Relax, take a deep breath and be grateful for what you have.

Last week I met up with an old friend, someone whom I care about deeply. Someone I worry about constantly, as they take no care of their health. Over the years I have watched them turn from someone that could run a half marathon to someone that is out of breath walking up a few flights of stairs.

All I want is for them to eat healthier and take some exercise to give them a better quality of life but sadly that’s not reality.

When I reflected on the situation I realise that there is nothing I can do. Because I’m not in control of anyone but myself. I want to help my friend, but they’re not interested in being helped.

So I made a decision, to let go. to surrender.

Not “let go” as in “let them go.”  I “let go” as in I stopped trying to control them, I’ve stopped trying to change them. What is the point of me getting stressed and worried if they are not willing to change.

And this, I’ve learned, is the best way to be in all walks of life…

When you let go of control, you stop trying to change people, and just dissolve into their presence, just noticing who they really are, just appreciating them, faults and all.

When you let go of control you will notice just how much time you spend trying to control. Not just people, but the events in your life.

Don’t get me wrong, you will still get stressed and worry, but you will notice that you snap out of it sooner. So instead of being stressed, for example, for the rest of the day, or week. Your only stressed for a short time.

You’ll start to notice just how much pressure you put on yourself by trying to have everything work out exactly as you would like.

When you let go of control and let God take control here’s what you gain…

1. You fall in love with people for who they really are

It’s OK to disagree with the thoughts or opinions expressed by those you love, but you must accept their opinion. Learn to appreciate different perspectives, lifestyles, and opinions, even if it means overcoming your pride and opening your mind beyond what’s comfortable.

Love is about letting those we care about be 100% themselves, and not distorting them to fit our own ideas of who we think they should be.

2. You grow beyond everyone’s judgements

How often have you been judged?  How often has the direction of your life been shaped by such judgements? Think about it.

How many opportunities have you been denied — or, for that matter, been granted — because someone failed to understand you completely? And how often have  you let other peoples judgements make you upset or stress you out because you thought you could control the way everyone sees you?

The truth is, people will see what they want to see whether you worry about it or not.

It’s time to let go of trying to control how everyone perceives you.

It’s time to let God take control, and just do the best you can.

3. You get to enjoy the peace that’s already within you

Realize that, somewhere within you, there exists a spirit that is eternally at peace. Because inner peace does not depend on external conditions — it’s what remains when you surrender the need to control.

The need for something to be different is nothing more than worry and worries like this only lead us in circles.

Peace of mind arrives the moment you come to peace with what’s on your mind, and this happens when you let go of the need for things to be different than they are. What’s happened has happened, and no amount of complaining or worry is going to change that fact.

4. You learn more about how life really works.

When you attempt to control the uncontrollable you create resistance.  You resist how everything works rather than learning about it.  So here’s a simple challenge for you:  Instead of trying to make things work exactly the way you want them to work, just watch them work today.

You’ll learn much more about human nature and the inner workings of the world.

As you see things working without you controlling them, the way you see what you see will gradually change.  Because YOU will gradually change.  You will begin to understand that things are a little different than you wanted them to be.  And that’s perfectly OK.

5. You experience more of life’s pleasant surprises.

Would you really want to be in control of everything, and know your future every step of the way?

If you’re thinking, “yes,” think again.  Not knowing is one of life’s greatest gifts.

Life is so full of changeable beauty and magnificent surprises.  And sometimes the unexpected arrival of this beauty is almost too much to handle.

Do you know that feeling?  When you get a breakthrough or some good news that gives you the lift you need to restore your faith…

Do you really want to miss out on them moments for the rest of your life?

6. You free your mind from needless worries.

The world around you is going to spin one way or the other.  So why not allow God to bless you in surprising and joyful ways?

Think about it…

What if, instead of pushing so hard to make life happen every second, you decided to let go a little and allow life to happen to you sometimes?

What if, instead of trying to be in constant control, you simply surrendered control to something bigger than yourself?

What if, instead of working so hard to figure out every last answer, you allowed yourself to be guided to the solution in perfect timing?

And what if, there was no solution needed at all?

7. You get more of what you want, by doing less.

When you let go and let God take control instead of trying to tightly control everything, you will be happier and have more peace.

You will notice that things will take care of themselves.  You will have less stress, less worry, and more time and energy to work on the things that matter — the things you actually can control — like your attitude about everything.

Let God Take Control

The mind is the place where the greatest conflict resides.

It’s where… half of the things you thought were going to happen, never did.

It’s where… your expectations always get the best of you.

It’s where… you fall victim to your cravings to control the uncontrollable.

And if you allow those thoughts and cravings to dwell in your mind, they will succeed in robbing you of peace, joy, and ultimately your life.  You will think yourself into a nervous breakdown, into depression, and into defeat.

Truthfully, there’s so much about life that you can’t control, it makes no sense to waste your energy on these things and then neglect everything you can control.

You can decide how you spend your time, whom you socialize with, whom you share your life, money and energy with.  You can choose to love and appreciate the people in your life for exactly who they are.

You can choose how you’re going to respond to surprises and disappointments when they arise, and whether you will see them as curses or opportunities for emotional growth…

And most importantly, you can choose to let go of control and adjust your attitude in an instant, which dictates pretty much everything else.

Thanks for reading.


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Its A Necessary Part Of The Process

process

We can get impatient when it comes to Gods will for our lives. We want everything to work out on our timetable. The truth is, a great deal of time usually elapses between when God calls us and when we’ve fulfilled His will for our lives.

And until we accept that, we’re not ready to go anywhere.

We need to understand that the journey is an important part of the process. It matters to God what you become on the way to where you are going. And following Him in obedience through many unknown, trails, and difficulties is an integral and indispensable part of the preparation.

God uses the journey to teach you faith, refine your character, and equip you for greater challenges that lie ahead. In fact, if you’re in the process of seeking Gods will right now, you’re already fulfilling part of it in your life.

God said, ‘I will instruct you and teach you in the ways you should go.’

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that because you don’t know all you’d like to, you’re not making progress.

Something is happening right now. Your faith is being stretched; your patience is being developed. Your doubts are being confronted and conquered, and your relationship with God is growing deeper. He always prepares us in advance for what He has planned for us.

Yes, the struggle is uncomfortable — but its a necessary part of the process.

 

Thank God for the way that He uses everything to transform you and deepen your relationship with Him.

When Things Don’t Work Out As You Plan

sometimesThe world isn’t going to devote itself to making us happy, and only when we accept that can we begin can move forward. Much of the time life doesn’t work out the way we plan.

Paul wrote, “Whenever a journey to Spain, I shall come to you.” But he never got to Spain; instead, he landed in prison. But it was from there he wrote the epistles. So, your disappointment may turn out to be God’s appointment!

The Bible says, ”In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps” (Proverbs 16:9 NIV 1984 Edition).

Aren’t you glad God is in control of your life? Let the philosophers argue over why life works as it does; just you focus on how to live it!

If you live to be a hundred, what good is it if resentment and regret keep you from enjoying it? And what good is more time, if you’re just wasting the time you’ve got?

Do you know how an oyster makes a pearl? When a grain of sand gets into it shell and irritates it, the oyster wraps the sand in layers of beauty until a pearl is formed.

An unknown poet wrote, “This tale has a moral, for isn’t it grand, what an oyster can do with a morsel of sand? What couldn’t I do if I’d only begin, with all of the things that get under my skin?”

God is at work in what you’re going through today — for your good and His glory. All you need to do is trust him.

Enjoy your week.

Do You feel Held Back By Worry and Have a Head Full Of Doubts?

Two monks were returning to the monastery in the evening. It had rained, and there were puddles of water on the roadsides. At one place a beautiful young woman was standing unable to walk across because of a puddle of water.

The elder of the two monks went up to her, lifted her and left her on the other side of the road, and continued his way to the monastery.

In the evening, the younger monk came to the elder monk and said, “Sir, as monks, we cannot touch a woman ?”

The elder monk answered, “yes, brother”.

Then the younger monk asks again, “but then Sir, how is that you lifted that woman on the roadside ?”

The elder monk smiled at him and told him” I left her on the other side of the road, but you are still carrying her.”

Like the monk, we can easily fall into the trap of carrying our worries around with us. Draining our energy and making us tired. Over the weeks and months, our fears can eventually affect our physical and emotional health leading to a whole host of problems.

It may seem like things will never get better, like things will remain the same as they have always been, but I would like you to know today it doesn’t have to be that way.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. It may seem like you will never overcome your relentless worry or crippling anxiety, but I would like you to know today that you can. But you can’t sit inactive.

It is pleasant to daydream, wouldn’t it be amazing to be without worry or anxiety, but to make your daydreams come true, you have to start walking in their direction. You have to take action.

You have to take the first step, and then the second, the third, and all the steps that separate you from your goal. This is valid for every improvement you would like to make, small or big, relating to your job, health, finance, self-improvement or spirituality.

Take a step today and download my book, How to Stop Worrying, on Amazon. Currently on free promotion. Click on the image below.

Gain the knowledge to strengthen your faith and cast your worries to one side.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy your week.

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Overthinking Kills Your Happiness

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All worries fall into two categories, stuff you can do something about and stuff you can’t. We all spend too much time and waste too much energy attempting to change what we cannot change. It is a major cause of stress and frustration.

If there is somethings you can do, do out a list and get to work. If there is nothing you can do, forget about it and move on, and i good way to doing that is just get busy. Get involving in doing something that take all your attention.

 

11 Powerful Ways to Overcome Self-Doubt

Self-doubt can hold you back. It can keep you from seizing opportunities. It can make getting started harder than it needs to be.

I’ve struggled with self-doubt for many years. I doubted my ability; I thought I was never good enough. And my choices reflected that.

I let self-doubt stop me from pursuing the things I wanted. It held me back from being who I wanted to be. Who I am today.

Self-doubt and negative self-talk became such a habit; I was comfortable with it. They kept me from improving and stuck me in an endless loop of negativity.

Self-doubt and fear go hand in hand. We can become so afraid of trying new things. We fear change because we’re afraid of the unknown, and we are so scared to try something new, in case it doesn’t work out, or turns out to be worse than what we have now.

We can come up with the worst-case scenarios in our heads instead of focusing on positive outcomes. We worry about what could go wrong instead of focusing on what could go right.

Fear and self-doubt can stop us from trying anything new, keeping us in our current situation. We adapt to our circumstances even if those circumstances aren’t benefiting us because it’s comfortable.

To overcome the self-doubt, fear, and lack of confidence, you need to intervene in your own life and take control. And these are 11 ways that you can do so from today.

Cartoon-stop

1. Say stop

When your inner doubts bubble up, be quick. Don’t let them spin out of control or grow from a thought to a stream of discouraging sentences. Instead, talk back to that doubtful part of yourself.

In your mind, voice a positive thought. If the thought says, ” the interview will not go well.” Immediately answer with, “Getting the interview means that I have what it takes.” Stop that negative thought in its tracks. Speak your truth.

By doing so, you disrupt the thought pattern and stop negative thinking from taking over.

reflect

2. Reflect on memories

Be honest with yourself and ask: How many times have I doubted myself or feared something would happen, for it not to materialize?

The answer for me – on many occasion.

Self-doubts like to keep you within the comfort zone.

If you look to the past and see how many times things worked out despite your self-doubts, then it becomes easier to let go of them and to focus on the more likely positive outcome and to take action.

3. Talk to someone about it

When you keep your negative thoughts to yourself, they can become exaggerated. So let them out into the light. Talk to someone close to you about your self-doubts.

They will confirm what you already know deep down, that you are more than capable; you’re just letting fear control your thinking.

By talking with someone supportive you will get a change in perspective.

4. Don’t get stuck in the comparison trap

If you compare yourself to other people, self-doubt can creep up on you.

A better way to go about things is to compare yourself to yourself. Look at how far you have come, and what you’ve overcome.

It to easy to look at everything that you want to achieve; rarely do people look back and look at what they have already achieved. Reflection gives us the added motivation that we need to keep going.

5. Start keeping a journal

Keeping a journal can be a helpful habit for many reasons when it comes to self-doubts, it can help you to remember the positive things, all the successes you’ve made. How you have overcome obstacles in the past can give you great insights if you’re crippled with fear.

When you write down your problem, you will be surprised at how little is holding you back. Plus, writing things down can give you a fresh perspective on the issue, making it easier to find solutions.

other people

6. Don’t worry about other peoples opinions

When you worry about what others may think or say if you do something, then self-doubt can lead to in-action and fear.

The truth is, people don’t care that much about what you do; they are too busy thinking about themselves, their worries, their bills, and their insecurities.

This is one of the most important lessons I have learnt in my life.

7. Get a boost of optimism

Let someone else’s enthusiasm, motivation and constructive optimism flow into your life.

Spend 10-20 minutes with an audiobook, a podcast or a book that increases your faith. Now with platforms like YouTube wisdom and encouragement is only a click away. Instead of turning on the TV, tune into some inspiration or motivation for 10-20 minutes a day.

A daily boost of positivity can help you to shift any self-doubts into optimism.

8. See a setback as temporary

When you have a setback, then you may start to see things through a negative lens. You might even let the set-back fill your mind with doubts.

Negative thinking can stop you from taking action, so instead, remember: You are not a failure just because you failed. Failure is a vital part of success.

Sometimes things go well and sometimes they don’t. So don’t let a failure determine your destiny.

Ask yourself: what is one thing I can learn from this setback? Use the mistake to your advantage and take a better approach.

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9. Don’t beat yourself up about it

A common way to handle self-doubt is to get angry at yourself. Being hard on yourself for a weakness or mistake is not a good approach.

I have found that being kind and constructive is a better choice. So I may ask myself a question like; what is one tiny step I can take to move forward in this situation?

Then I take that tiny step and start to step by step move towards where I want to go.

10. Celebrate that small step and win

When you’ve taken one small step forward – for example, do your first CV/Resume in years– then you have a win. It may be a small one, but it’s still a win. So celebrate it.

This will recharge your motivation and make taking action feel more exciting and fun. And that will push self-doubts aside so you keep moving and getting more small wins.

11. The map is not the territory

In the carrying out of plans, many things can change, so it is essential that you don’t allow self-doubt to creep in.

Your plan might be A-B-C-D, but the journey of life may take you from A-D-B-C. As long as you are aware of this fact it removes self-doubt when your life takes a slightly different turn than you expected.

For example; your plan might be to work within an organisation that campaigns for human rights, but your life journey presents you with a job where your working along side the very people that make the laws; where your influence could make a massive change.

But if you dismiss that job because it doesn’t line up with your set plan then you may never get that opportunity.

Overcoming self-doubt is a process that we must work on each day. I hope the above tips have inspired you in some way.

Thanks for reading.