Monday, January 15, 2018

ARISE in your OUTLOOK

Twelve men were sent out on a strategic fact-finding mission to gather intelligence about this purpose promised place which they were told they would conquer.   

This purpose promised place was truly all that God said it would be!  Look, they even returned with a foretaste of the fruit of the promise.  This was a great report and their Outlook is great!

But, along with the great Outlook came a few facts.  Strong enemies, large obstructions and…. Doubts! 

“We can’t do this … we can’t attack this … they’re bigger and stronger … we’ll be devoured … there are already giants in my promise place … and I seemed like a tiny little grasshopper in my own eyes next to them!”

Doubts! Doubts only see giants, problems, impossibility, and obstacles. Doubts leave God out of the equation and we make us forget, He is the one that set this purpose promised place before us, in us! 

Doubts cause us to look in at ourselves as grasshoppers.  Surely if I see myself as a grasshopper, everyone else does also. 

What is your purpose promised place?  Your marriage, the business, financial freedom, the family!  What seemingly impossible situation (your giant) did you face in 2017 that caused you to shrink back?

Question:  In the middle of facing your giant, did God send someone into your life to encourage you, “surely you will conquer and this purpose promised place is in fact still yours!”  Whose report did you believe?  

Arise.  Don’t run away in fear, face your giant head-on.  Refuse to continue wandering that mountain of doubts.

Arise. The impossibilities you faced in 2017 were actually opportunities to trust God. 

To overcome the “grasshopper syndrome”, you must change your OUTLOOK!  No more focusing on the difficulties of that situation, it is time to remember what God said.  Arise.

YOUR marriage, your family, your business, your finances, your health, your PURPOSE PROMISED PLACE, will you fight for it?  It is still yours, you can still conquer, but you must fight.      

Arise, change what you are looking at and fight ….  

Imagine a child who suddenly bumps into the neighborhood bully which he has been avoiding all year long.  The child trembles as he looks downs to avoid the eyes of this bully.  But suddenly he senses something deep within himself which causes the child to look up.  He is not looking up at the bully he is looking past the bully and there is his dad walking up behind the bully.  The child is no longer intimidated by the bully because he has shifted his gaze from the bully to his father.

Change your focus, change your OUTLOOK! That situation may be tough, but you are no grasshopper.

Arise!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Arise from 2017 & Emerge in 2018


“What is the word for the year?” I was asked on New Year’s Eve.  “Hum, not sure” I sheepishly replied.   


How could I not be sure on the last day of the year?  Every year starting with the Jewish new year until the end of our calendar year, I have listened intently within myself for that ONE word, but this year I heard two.  

ARISE… It is time to Arise.  My challenge with this word? Well, the challenges I faced in 2017 should have brought me to a place where I did arise.  To begin 2018 still saying arise felt a little defeating.  Well, then comes the second word…

EMERGE… This is the year to Emerge.  Oh, I liked that!!! Emerge feels so powerful (and the word for 2017 was POWER).  Yes, I liked emerge, but what about arise?  Let’s look at the meaning of each word:

Arise:    
To get up, as from a sitting or prone position; 
To awaken, and get up; 
To move upward; 
To come into being; originate.

Well, there is no big surprise there!  Let’s now look at Emerge:
To come forth into view; 
To come into existence or notice;
Move out from something and become visible. 

Wow...I got it!!!!

2017 brought us many new trials and challenges.  We found ourselves facing situations that we never faced before, and we didn’t really have anyone to walk us through.  These situations were uniquely designed for US!!!  Yes, tailor-made, so stop rebuking the devil.  

Allow me to illustrate:  
It was New Year’s Day and we had a house full of sleeping people.  My alarm went off at 4:30 AM.  Prayer, Devotion, Exercise (yeah right).  As I lay there, my mind said, “get up”!  Eventually, I did after hitting the snooze button three times.  "Oh darn, now I don’t have time to exercise."  What happened?  My hearts intent was to do what I knew would be beneficial for me, but I chose to delay.  Eventually, I did ARISE, and I noticed my night scarf was lying on the bed. I was sure my hair was quite disheveled without even looking in the mirror. I decided I would start breakfast and everyone would be waiting for me with expectation!

Now came the critical decision--Should I fix my hair, brush my teeth, and wipe the sleep from my eyes? OR Should I just EMERGE from my bedroom without doing due diligence! Hmm.

Taking a more personal note, the week of Thanksgiving I spent five days in the hospital.  The last day was the day after Thanksgiving, and I was upset that I missed the holiday with my family.  I was perfectly able to Arise out of my hospital bed, roam the halls and talk with other patients, so why couldn’t I go home. It looked like I was better. It felt like I was better!  But, I had to stay one day longer because the doctors wanted to ensure the medication had done its ‘due diligence’.  I had to wait one more day before I was allowed to Emerge!

So, what is the primary difference between Arise and Emerge? One is to get up, but the other is to come out…. in victory!!!

In 2017, you & your spouse may have endured some of the hardest times in your marriage.  Did you Arise from what you went through, or did you just get through it?  

What did that illness teach you about yourself? About others? About your own mortality? Most of all, what can you now teach others?  

If we begin 2018 only thanking God the year is over, and declaring what this coming year will be, without looking at lessons 2017 taught us, we will have missed it.

You fought many battles in 2017, don’t leave your spoils behind!!! 



Saturday, April 29, 2017

Before you Walk Away


So you think it is time?  Time to “Just Do It”, Time to “Just Jump”!  Time for full-time ENTREPRENEURSHIP! 

Recently, I read an impassioned writing by a young woman giving her thoughts regarding “4 Reasons To Quit Your Job To Be An Entrepreneur”. 


Oh, how I wish I could sit down with her over coffee, my treat of course, to discuss her four points:    


1. Recognition and R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Yes, you want respect. You want to feel validated in a way thus far robbed by the corporate world or regular day-to-day job you live in.”  

Well, my dear, the first person that needs to recognize, respect and acknowledge your accomplishments is YOU!  If you are needing validation now, you will find yourself chasing it for a long time.  Focus on walking out your destiny, then the recognition will come.  There is no greater respect than self-respect! 


2. Control

“Most entrepreneurs finally take the plunge when they become sick and tired of not controlling their own destiny."

Control or do you mean “decision making”? 


In entrepreneurship, yes the decisions are all yours!  Right, wrong, or indifferent the buck stops with you.  But, if it is actually ‘control’ you believe you have, think again. The new master and overseer of Control is called “Time”.


3. Freedom

"Wouldn't it be nice to work from the beaches of Costa Rica or the slopes of Aspen? Owing your own business – you can do pretty much whatever you want; whenever you want! "

Wow!  This does sound great!  But, back to Time…You must master Time, or Time will master you.   Yes, you have the freedom to work from the beaches of Costa Rica, but most likely your computer is with you to conference call back to the U.S.  

With Freedom comes responsibility!  Responsibility is called Time-Management!

4. Financial Rewards

"Goodness – lest we forget the money and financial opportunities. Do you realize there is no better way to create wealth for yourself then by being an entrepreneur?"

Now THIS is true! Before you Jump, do your due diligence: 


Research - Identify your competitors; what makes you unique in this field?

Personal Expenses - Along with rent, utilities, food, clothing, etc., be sure to factor in the costs of health and life insurance provided by your current employer.


Business expenses - Along with your personal expenses, you will need money for the business.


Identify Potential Partners - Who is your Tribe? Don’t try to go it alone.  You need people--the right people.


Consider Your Strengths and Weaknesses – Honest assessment.  If you have trouble identifying them, ask somebody.  


Consider your work habits - Do you enjoy working on your own? Do you get lonely without others?  


Entrepreneurship does offer a number of benefits.  Yet, with greater freedom, financial rewards, control and respect comes greater responsibility!   


Remember, what you walked away from may not be where you left it if you need to go back.




Wednesday, April 12, 2017

You Are the Gift!

Hey there.

Have you ever found yourself in this place? 

Wondering…Questioning ….Yearning for the time and opportunity when your unique gifting (talent) will be utilized in a capacity that not only impacts the lives of others, but also leaves an enduring imprint in the earth?   

Yet, generally it is not your gifting that is being used. It's you.


Now, before you clam up and shut down, let me explain.

Many have yet to recognize the difference between the gift that you ARE and the gift that you HAVE.

The gift that you ARE works non-stop.  Its availability is predicated upon your intentional willingness to simply be available.  God has set within you an eternal "switch" (for a lack of a better word), that can be triggered at any given moment, and in any given circumstance.   

The gifting (talent) that you HAVE works a little different. Its availability and use oftentimes comes through training, reading, studying, mentoring and life experiences.  Yet, even with all of these listed preparations, it still may not be put to use. 

Don’t fret, your gifts will truly make room for you, in time. Most likely you are in the waiting period, also known as PROCESS, for gift development.  I am a witness that process generally creates great frustration, because it appears that what you have is not needed in your current place.

“So, what is the purpose of this gift that I have if it is never being used? "

Glad you asked?

To profit withal wherever and whenever God needs it.

When it seems God has shut you down in the arenas in which you just know your gift (talent) would be most useful, remember the gift was given to you by God, and He knows when and where IT will be used…so you won’t be. 

The dichotomy is that at the same time that God halts the gift you have, he will create arenas that place the gift you ARE on full display. 

“In this God? Now God? Going through what I am going through now?” 

Yes, because that gift you are is in a beautiful container with a bright bow on it, and it must be dismantled!  All will gather with anticipation as the gift is revealed.    

Warning!  The container holding the gift may be unintentionally damaged during the opening, especially in young hands. Yet, no one considers the discarded container afterwards because it was not the focus. It completed its purpose, which was to contain the gift until it is unveiled.

So, don't retreat. Don't complain. Most of all, don’t count yourself out! Just continue to perfect your giftings (talents) through process, and the gift that you Are in obedience.

~ His timing is something no man can hinder or stop.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Don’t trip, it’s only Change

Is it hot in here?   

You don’t feel that? Oh it's just me?  Another one, ugh! Stop tripping, it is only the Change.

What exactly is a hot flash?  The exact cause may not be known, but science says that it happens when our reproductive hormones and our body's thermostat (hypothalamus), become more sensitive to slight changes in body temperature.

Wow…It seems my body is declaring the changes we see in this world today--And it is uncomfortable and it's HOT!

The Boomers, Busters Gen-X and Millennials: We all fit on the corporate body of America and the world, and wherever we sit on the timeline of life, one thing is certain…Change! 

It is the Change we like, and the Change we don’t!

As a buster myself, I often fought with my Gen-X daughter to get a good “corporate” job.  Build that pension...maintain life insurance…GROW UP!!!!

What took me a while to see is she had grown up, but things had changed.  Gen-X was the generation that if they could not find a way in what the buster established, then then they would make a way--And make a way she did!

Many of the Gen-X billionaires are examples of those that found their own way:  Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, Computer maker Michael Dell, Yahoo's Jerry Yang, and Google's Page and Brin. 

Wait…another hot flash!  Change!!!

Enter in the Millennial, who hate to be labeled that way! 

Millennials…werk, werk, werk!  If Millennials don’t like what the establishment (usually a boomer or buster) have set in motion, then they will change it!  

That is what you are supposed to do, right?  Protest, right? It worked before, so it will work again, right? So, they will do it big, do it fast, and be done! 

So, why is it not working? Why aren’t the protests working?  

Well, they are protesting against the boomers, and those old hormones don’t die easy.  Who can help them, show them?  Gen-X could definitely be that bridge for change, but wait, they already found their own way. 

Yep...another hot flash! This one is a little longer and a lot bigger. Change.

Millennials ~ Tribes over Traditions that is their mantra! Who raised them? Where did this come from?  

Is it because a two parent traditional family was not their norm, so they created one.      

Now these Millennial families/tribes have crossed the traditional boundaries of culture, race, gender, and religion.  

We will now see a white protestant woman protesting with signs that say “black lives matter”, because that is her family…her tribe. 

Yes, change has happened, and one thing that is constant in life is Change!

For the last 8 years we have had an African-American president that represented this country and his race with grace and dignity.  

Eight years ago there was a 16 year old boy or girl who is now 8 years older.  It will be their voice, their opinions, and their" truth" will set the stage for what is next.  

But don’t trip…It’s only Change.

Monday, January 2, 2017

A Fresh Start

I love the beginning of the New Year! It is a fresh start, a do-over.

Give yourself this gift: the privilege of embracing your fresh start with a fresh outlook and fresh ideas.

While thinking about this fresh start, I am reminded of certain super heroes and their superpowers: Captain America, the Flash, Ironman. It always seems that right at the 12th hour, the main character in the story gets a do-over. Just when everyone counted them out they rise to the occasion!

So in this story of your life, you may not know what the next chapter may bring, but one thing you do know--YOU ARE THE MAIN CHARACTER of this production.

2016 was relentless. There were so many we had to say goodbye to, and there are quite a few new people and situations that we have to embrace.

If you had known or if you had the opportunity to pre-read the plot of 2016, I am sure you would have… held them closer, removed it or them earlier, and/or committed to your purpose with greater passion. Most importantly, you would have held on to your own super Power!


Power - the ability to act or produce an effect 

Power - permissible authority

Power – the moral strengthening

Power – virtue of one’s own ability and resources through a state of favorable circumstances.

Power! Year after year we have given over our power to fears, doubts and insecurities--To people, situations and circumstances. No more!

As we sit down and create our vision boards, re-evaluate our vision statements for our families, our personal affairs and our businesses, we should first embrace ALL that 2016 brought to us.  2016 was necessary to bring you into a greater understanding of the next chapter in the story line of your life. 

The fact that you made it to 2017 is proof of the untapped power within you. This year, together we will explore all our untapped potential and untapped
POWER.

The story of your life just became more exciting.

Happy New Year and welcome to your Fresh Start!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

CELEBRATE THE WINS!


CELEBRATE THE WINS!  What does that mean exactly?

It means YOU must take the time to celebrate you! 2016 is almost over and some can’t wait! We already hear ...

*  I'm moving on and moving up!
*  It’s time for my greater!
*  2017 is my next!
*  New adventures, greater connections!
*  Adding in new networks and cutting out some fake friends!


WAIT!!! PAUSE!!! STOP!!! BREATH!!!!

Many of these statements may very well be true, but 2016 is still here, right?

I would say stop and smell the roses, but it is the first day of winter and the buds are gone; but even the thorns are reminders of the beauty that was once there.

Being the consummate overachieving, goal oriented, type-A personality that I am, I was recently challenged to do just this. Stop and Celebrate my Wins! 

This year I did have quite a few “wins”, I just had to stop focusing on the thorns.

In 2016, I met and made some wonderful friends through various social media platforms. Just being “Intentional” opened many doors. 

And yes I said “friends".   It IS still okay to have and be friends!

Let me give you counsel in my Grandmother’s voice, 

“Honey, when you hear people say they don’t need friends, or don’t trust in friends, those are individuals that have not healed from the thorns”.  

The challenge with friendships today is that often times they are not built on trust but usury; and we haven't learned to place proper boundaries around our friendships.

In 2016, one week before my 55th birthday I earned an associate’s degree in Religious Studies. This had been a dream of mine for over 25 years, and I forgot to celebrate. I just moved on … no more of that!

In 2016, my reputation preceded me, and I received my largest speaking engagement to date! Through this experience I gained even more “friends”.

In 2016, I established my first 501c3 organization (More to come on this), partnering with some trusted, professional, godly women who are … won’t repeat the f-word. (Wow, when did friend become a dirty word?)

In 2016, after 25 years, I was accepted as an undergrad at Regent University. I just finished my first semester. Hold on while I check my grades …. GPA 3.83! Go me!!!!

Oh, not a cake walk--up at 4:30 am to study, off to work an 8 hour job, home to finish my non-profit paperwork, sleep…what was that? How did I make it these last couple of months? My friends! Those that encouraged me when I didn’t think I could do this, those that listened to me as I read my papers, and specifically those that had to explain what a "rubric" was!

Here is the key on "friendships" --All of the above mentioned are different people! There really is not just one individual that can fill all of these needs.  That is what God is for!

Yes, there were many Wins this year…and there were many thorns. So I guess I shall celebrate both!

I would love to hear about your Wins! Did you stay employed when others were laid off?  Did you restore a broken relationship that you and others thought it could not be restored?  After he left or she left did you survive it? Do you still have a portion, tiny as it may be, of your right mind? Those are all Wins!  I would love to hear about your Wins.

So now, I celebrate YOU! You are also my WIN! Merry Christmas.