The Unexpected Cure for Doubt

positive thinking tip: When you feel worried or doubtful, dig a trench.

Shovel and trench.I remember the days when my husband and I were trying to live on about $1200/month.  We were both working full time and fighting a losing battle to stay afloat.

We listened to motivational audios that urged us to believe in our dreams, and we knew that we could have any kind of life we really wanted, but when it came right down to it, it was always impossible to see where any extra money would ever come from.

I can see now that at the time, having faith in the face of scarcity was an impossible expectation.  Here’s why:

The thing that made it so difficult is that we knew exactly how much money we were getting, and we also knew just how much our expenses exceeded that income.

If true financial success cannot be achieved without at least some degree of FAITH (believing in something without tangible evidence), how in the world is a person supposed to have that kind of faith when all evidence proves that it’s utterly impossible?

I learned that there are three things that, over the years, helped me build that necessary faith.

  1. Continuing Education – learning new marketable skills and studying the laws of success
  2. Work – investing time, money, and energy in other income streams outside of our regular jobs.  (Even when they didn’t produce a profit – and they didn’t – for nearly 10 years!)
  3. Choosing to Believe in God, and believing that He was interested in our success – and trusting that it was being orchestrated, if we’d just kept moving our feet.

For nearly a decade, we worked and studied and worked some more.  We believed the abundance would have to find us sometime, if we just kept trying.

It makes me think about the early settlers of my desert region:

There were a lot of ditches to dig and canals to build before they were prepared to utilize a flow of water.  I’m sure it took many, many years to put those systems in place.

As you explore your talents and look for new ways to monetize them, just picture yourself digging ditches and building canals.  It’s so easy to think that a massive, sudden flow of money would solve all of your problems, but in reality, that gush could be just as devastating as a flash flood in a valley where the settlers are trying to create a system for a steady, constant supply of water instead.

You don’t want the gush until your systems are in place!

It dawned on me that after my husband took the leap toward full-time self-employment (when we really couldn’t predict exactly where the money would come from like we could when we had a regular paycheck), the more trenches we dug, the easier it was to have faith in God.

Isn’t that interesting?

Having put forth so much unrewarded effort for so long, in the face of scarcity, instead of saying, “I can’t think of a single place the money could come from,”  we could more easily say, “The water could come from any one of the hundreds of trenches we dug all those years!”

Compared to our first few years together, how much easier it now was to finally believe!  How much easier it was to have faith!  And faith is the critical element.  All the work in the world without faith can be just as useless as all the faith you can muster without work.

As they say, “Faith without works is dead.”  Truly without some personal effort, faith is meaningless.  Why? Because you demonstrate your faith BY working! You’re proving your belief in the abundant life by putting forth the effort to get those money-making systems in place.

And, when faith is low, work can help it grow, too.  This is why the unexpected cure for doubt in my opinion is: Education, and WORK.

If you can’t think of where to get the money you need, shift your focus to increasing your knowledge, and get to work finding some kind of meaningful services you can perform for others.

God did not bring you this far to fail now… stay in forward motion.  Your reward is waiting for you!

For a first-class education in the principles of prosperity, join me in the FTMF Program!

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Bleach and Blunders

positive thinking tip: Even a laundry room catastrophe can teach a valuable life lesson.

Big MistakeWhen my oldest son was seventeen, he was given the assignment to do the family laundry for a solid week.

With nine people in the household, that is no small task – especially when (at the time) the laundry room had no folding tables, and no floor space unless you stepped on the piles of clothing waiting to be processed.

(We eventually remodeled to remedy the problem, but I thought you should have a visual of what my son was up against.)

While he was at school, and realizing that he was too busy to keep up on all of it, I helped fold and put things away.  Occasionally, I’d notice an article of clothing that didn’t look quite right.  There were swirly designs on certain shirts, and faded spots on certain pants.

I asked him, “Honey, are you using bleach on the colors?”

“No, mom; I’m only using detergent.”

I thought, “That’s really strange.  Maybe our washer is acting up again; maybe it’s holding bleach from previous white loads and releasing it into the colored loads.”

Finally on the last day of his assignment, he pulled out one of his favorite shirts.  It was navy, but the sleeves were now light brown.

He exclaimed, “What is going on?!  That was one of my favorite shirts!”

“Are you sure you’re not using bleach?”

He pulled me into the laundry room and showed me the detergent.  Or, at least what he thought was detergent.  Sure enough, it was bleach.

He thought the loads would run better if he used the liquid detergent instead of the powder.  However, as he finally realized to his horror: it was not liquid detergent after all.

He had washed an entire week’s worth of laundry for nine people in NOTHING but bleach!

(No wonder why they didn’t have that springtime-fresh smell!)

Here’s what I gained from that experience – besides a few new items of clothing – I noticed that his blunder didn’t get his attention until something meaningful to HIM was affected.

The same goes for our lives and the laws of success.

We might go around violating certain principles, possibly even unintentionally causing pain for those around us, but until our blunders affect something meaningful to US, we may not care or pay any attention.

However, life has a way of getting our attention, and putting us in a position to where we start asking the right questions.

But how much better would it be to remain in learning mode – discovering ALL the principles of prosperity, and practice living by them, even when things are going pretty well, so that we might avoid personal catastrophes meant to teach us the lessons we may be unknowingly disregarding?

Pay attention when that inner voice speaks up and suggests there may be something more to learn.

If it comes and you disregard it, God just may allow you to lose your shirt, so that he can get your attention and so you’ll start asking the right questions.  Sometimes that’s what it takes in order for you to be receptive to the simple adjustment He hopes you’ll make, so that you can live life a little more abundantly.

I think we’re first given hints, a subtle nudge from that inner voice, like when I asked my son if he was doing something wrong.  If we don’t pick up on the hints life sends our way, then we’re on a collision course with an experience that will really get our attention.

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Do the Challenges Ever Stop?

Positive Thinking Tip: When you are down to nothing, God is up to something.

It’s thrilling to discover the principles of prosperity, and it’s especially exciting when you see them work for the first time.

From there, you feel empowered and encouraged to think bigger and test the principles on more significant tasks. But when you face a setback, you might be left wondering, “What just happened here? I thought that if I just live the principles perfectly, the rest of my life would be easy!”

I have an answer for this, and I hope it doesn’t burst anyone’s bubble too much… but we were placed on this earth to grow.

All life is compelled to grow and expand. That is one of the definitions that helps us determine whether something is alive: does it grow?

In order for us to grow, we must have challenges that stretch us beyond our present limits. We must work our mental muscles and exercise our mind, body, and spirit in order to have the joy and experience the success that only comes through growth and expansion. There are few joys that exceed the feeling of facing a difficult challenge, and overcoming it.

The truth is, that if we ever found ourselves without challenges, we would become unhappy and restless.

Remember when you were a child, and your mother tried to teach you how to tie your shoe?

Did it work the first time you tried it? Probably not. And it was probably very frustrating, and likely evoked some tears.

In that moment, there had never been so great a challenge in your life. You wanted to throw in the towel, give up, and if it didn’t make you cry, it probably made you growl in frustration. However, in time, it became old hat for you and you could do it without even thinking.

Then when you were in sixth grade, your teacher probably assigned you a book report that would take several weeks and had to fill up about 4 pages. You had never done an assignment that big before, and it was overwhelming. In time, and after being required to do a number of similar assignments, it was no big deal. What took several weeks could be completed in a day, because you had experience.

Fast forward to college.

Remember those projects that ultimately determined your final grade? Remember the countless hours on the computer? Remember closing off your social life in order to meet that deadline? It was overwhelming, and the stress was unbelieveable. You had never been required to work so hard on something so important! If you were like me, you shed many tears and begged your professor more than once for mercy.

Then for some of you, you started in the work force and had job pressures and bills to pay. Sometimes it was too much to bear. You thought you had it pretty tough until…

You got married and added a spouse to the picture.

Now there were work pressures, bills to pay, and a spouse to please. Who knew that being responsible to one other person could stir things up that much?

Pretty soon, you got into the routine of things, and even though things are tough, you have no idea what tough means until…

You start having children.

Are there words to describe how complicated things became when kids entered the picture??

Now wait a minute… think back to the time when you were learning to tie your shoe. Oh, if only life were that easy now!!!

But remember, at the time, when you were six and you had to figure out how to pull the string just enough to make a loop and not enough to make a knot, it was as though the world was falling apart and it was nearly more than you could cope with.

One day, today’s challenges will look like child’s play as you learn to conquer them.

All that I do through my books and programs is to provide the tools you need to learn how to succeed in overcoming the challenges you face today. Will challenges in general go away? No.

But you’ll be prepared to handle bigger challenges, and you’ll grow in faith, hopefully learning to rely more perfectly on God in all you do.

It seems that life will only get more challenging.

WAIT!

I didn’t say life has to get worse… or even harder, but it will constantly deliver more and more ADVANCED challenges.

As we learn the laws and adopt them into our habits, we become successful at overcoming them more and more gracefully. Every challenge could easily seem overwhelming… but only relative to what we’ve conquered in the past.

Challenges are important because they help us build confidence.

Imagine a child who never gained confidence in learning something simple… what if they were required to hold office as president of a large organization! Each challenge is intended to lead us along to receive all that God would have us receive. Each is an opportunity to overcome and gain increased confidence in the partnership we are developing between ourselves and God.

You can get good at handling finances and attracting wealth. Learning to achieve prosperity is a skill that can be improved. Just as you got good at tying a shoe, this is one skill that can become a strength.

Don’t get discouraged if new challenges show up. It doesn’t mean you are failing. It means you have grown to a point where God believes you can handle something else. It is an indication of His increased faith in you.

I heard somewhere, “When you are down to nothing, God is up to something”. There is joy to be had in the struggle. As we learn to find peace in each whirlwind of trouble around us, that is success. Then, the prosperity you want begins to flow naturally.

Seek peace and prosperity comes, seek prosperity and peace flees.

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