Hello again, Gang!
The following is a comment I left on Brendon Burchard's blog page, in response to a request that his readers share with him, and each other, what we think the meaning of life is. I wrote this answer, and was so impressed with myself that I copied it to share with you. At the end, I will put a link to Brendon's blog. He's one I think you should get acquainted with. He has much to say that we all could learn from. Dave
Brendon, you asked us to comment on the meaning of life. I could direct you to buy my 6-vol treatise on the meaning of life, except I haven't written it yet. In the meantime, here's a piece of it:
Love your neighbor as yourself.
Of course, that is only helpful if you know what "love" means. My personal definition, cobbled together after decades of listening to preachers and teachers around the country, is this: Love is an attitude (not an emotion!) of willingness to give of yourself and your resources to meet the needs of another. Boil all that down to a two word definition: "Love" means meeting needs.
I could leave it at that, but I'm not going to. I don't know if you read this stuff yourself or if you have an assistant who weeds out the crazies, in which case maybe your assistant will see some of the following before it hits the shredder, but as long as I'm deluding myself that I have Brendon Burchard's attention, I can't waste such an opportunity as this.
If I were sick, I'd appreciate someone offering to drive me to the doctor's office, or pick up my medicine at the drugstore, or pick up dinner for the kids while I took a nap. But right now, I'm not sick. But someone around me is sick, or hungry, or lonely. Loving my neighbor is as simple as reaching out to do for them what I'd like them to do for me if I were in their shoes. I can't change the world, but I can help the next guy out.
"What if you don't love yourself?" There have been times in my life, lots of time, in fact, when I thought, and said, that I hated myself. Of course, I didn't really hate myself. I may have hated my job, or my boss, or my wife (previous wife; I love!!! my current wife). In fact, what I hated were the bad decisions I had made that brought me to such a lousey place in life. I didn't atually hate myself. I wasn't standing in the rain trying to die of pneumonia! I was actually trying to take care of myself. I ate food that I liked, slept in a warm bed, watched really enjoyable TV shows (hours on end!). So my advice for those who "don't love themselves?" Think about this: If you're cold, do you put on a sweater? Then find somebody who's cold, and give them a sweater. It's that simple.
We are put on this earth to be God's family; that relationship was interfered with, and now God is on a search-and-rescue mission. Each of us who return to the family are commissioned to go out and rescue somebody else. "Love your neighbor as yourself" is the battle cry of the rescue mission.
Sorry, but it's your own fault; you hadda ask!
Hi gang -- Great to be with you again. Just a short note this time to tout a video I just watched last night. You may have heard of Frank Kern -- he's one of a small number of Internet Marketers that has become, in the last few years, known as a "Guru," meaning he has been so successful in business that others want to know how he did it and how they can duplicate his success. He has a blog with a number of free videos that give away a lot of his secrets, and of course he has launched a number of training products that people pay HUGELY for, but here is a link to a 2 hour video where he lays it on the line. It was difficult for me to find, and you do have to log in to see the video, but the info on this video is absolutely vital! I can't stress enough the value you will get out of this thing. Be warned, however, that Frank is not a Christian, and the event at which he is speaking is a secular seminar for marketers and business people, and the language used is coarse in places. Anybody who is at all involved in a people-to-people business, not only sales and marketing, but evangelism, teaching/preaching, even personal relationships, will benefit greatly from the info on this video. Watch it through to the end, and be prepared to take notes and probably watch again. This thing is worth it.
Here's the link:
When you've seen the video, please leave a comment here or by email to let me know who you are and what you thought of it.
Cheers, and God bless.
Guys, I know it's been a while, and I know you (if anybody's out there) think I fell off the earth. I haven't, yet. I have, however, been deep in thought for some time, preparing for my next foray into the murky depths of blogsylvania. (That's my word, and I don't want to see anybody stealing it!) Truth is, I'm preparing a series of articles that promises to be worth the wait, so brace yourselves. In the meantime...
...just a quick word from the Pulpit on the subject of parenthood. That is one of the joys of life that has eluded me lo these many years, to my eternal (or at least temporal) sorrow. However, although I'm not a parent, I can just dimly remember being a child, and that'll have to do.
The question is, how would you, as a parent, respond, if, when you called little Junior in for supper, he refused to come in? You call and call, he stays outside by the door, refusing to come to the table, or even go wash his hands. You beg, you plead, you threaten, and finally you ask him for the reason. Why doesn't he come in to eat supper? And he responds, it's because he is unworthy.
Unworthy. After all, haven't you, Dad, or of course, Mom (equal billing), spent virtually the entire day telling Junior how naughty he is? How disappointed you are at his conduct, at his lapses into pre-potty-training behavior, at his immaturity in general? How tired you are of having to clean up after him, pick up his clothes, make his bed, put away his toys, cook, sweep, labor to provide for him, and this is the thanks you get???
Any of this sound familiar? And yet, here it is, time for supper, and this little semi-domesticated house ape (I don't remember where I got that line, but I love it!) has the prunes to look you in the face and say he's unworthy of the food you have worked so hard to prepare??? (Don't think of it as murder, think of it as retroactive abortion.)
Of course your kid does no such thing. Kids just don't think like that. You know, and so does your kid, if he were sophisticated enough mentally to think about it, that your providing for his needs, food, clothing, shelter, bath-room privileges, even love and affection, is not predicated on his performance. All that you do, the pleasant as well as the less pleanant, like the scolding and discipline and constant and repetative admonitions about his behavior, are all meant for his good. All you want out of life is for Junior to be a good little boy, well-mannered and polite, a credit to his long-suffering parents. And isn't that the only true goal of parenthood? A well-behaved child?
In a word, no.
Turning your precious little bundle of tax-deductible joy from a selfish, self-centered fun-killer with a screaming, eating mouth at one end and a poop-machine at the other into a healthy, happy child who plays well with others and speaks only when spoken to, who combs his hair and washes his hands without being reminded to, and doesn't need help with his homework, is not your goal, and neither is that the goal of your Heavenly Father. God's intention, from the day He put you into that child's life, was to produce, with your help, an adult human being who knows in his heart that he is a worth-while, loved, member of God's family, with a purpose and a destiny of his own.
And that, by the way, is God's goal for you as well. He isn't interested in populating the earth (or Heaven either, for that matter) with toddlers and infants who behave themselves and don't get in the way. He is trying to produce mature sons and daughters who will go out into our communities and work-places and reproduce after our kind. As long as you see yourself as a "child" in God's kingdom, you will not be the son or daughter He desires you to become. You have a place to occupy and work to do in the kingdom, and God loves you too much to leave you in the playpen.
You crawl until you learn to walk. When you learn to walk, you don't sit down, you grab a bicycle and move to the next level. God is much less interested in today's behavior than in the person you are becoming.
In the coming months, expect to see some activity on this blog page, with corresponding activity on Facebook and Twitter as well. The subject of personal growth, spiritual and otherwise, has formed itself into a motto (I was tempted to say "mantra," but I was afraid of sounding too New Agey): "Be, Then Do." In the meantime, that's the latest from the Pulpit. Feel free to leave a comment.