great life

Your life can be great right now. Stop focusing on the things of this world. Turn your attention to the God who loves you. This is how.

What Is Generosity?

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When people think about the topic of generosity what usually comes to mind is money.  More specifically, their money and what they need to give away.  Generosity certainly includes money and how much of your money you give away to help others.  That is only a small part of generosity though.

Yes, generosity is much more than giving away money.  Generosity is about time, talent, knowledge, wisdom, faith and just about anything else that you may possess.  In fact, you are very unlikely to become financially successful unless you learn to be generous in all areas of your life.

Communication Basics

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There are many different types of people and therefore many different personalities.  There are people who are social and people who are not.  One thing that everyone has in common is our need to communicate.  The ability to communicate effectively is necessary for almost every endeavor in life.  We, as a society, have lost that vital skill and it’s about time we learned how to get it back.

Success

We learn to walk by the time we are one; we learn to ride a bike by the time we’re six, about the same time we are starting school. We learn to drive by the time we are sixteen.  We get married, have kids and then retire.  We do this, most of us anyway, without learning about success.  I’m talking about real success.  Some of us may have learned society’s version of success and that is precisely why we are unhappy and unfulfilled.  Of true success, we know very little or even nothing.  Many of us never learn what success is and what it isn’t.  We don’t understand what failure is or what it isn’t.

Trusting God 

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We don’t make money because we are smart or have more ability than someone else.  We make money because God knows that we need it to function in this world.  He provides and we are meant to do certain things with that provision.  We are trusted to make good decisions and when we do, we are given more.  “But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth and so confirms His covenant, which He swore to your forefathers, as it is today.”clxvi  

One of the most harmful traits someone can possess is over reliance on other people.   Being overly reliant on other’s kindness or generosity makes you extremely vulnerable.  I believe that God wants everybody, including you, to be God reliant.  He hasn’t given your ability to produce wealth to someone else such as a long lost relative or a friend who just won the lottery.  You don’t have to wait for unlikely events like these to occur.  You can produce wealth today.   

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When the Israelites became Egypt’s slaves for 400 years, they had nothing to call their own.  Everything they received came from the “generosity” of their masters.  They couldn’t improve their lot in life.  All their initiative and self-reliance was taken away from them.  God however didn’t want them to be reliant on others or even self-reliant; he wanted them to be God-reliant, so he led them into the wilderness. Sometimes we are led into our own wilderness so that we can become God-reliant. 

The freedom from over-reliance on others is a great feeling.  It means that you can now follow God’s plan for your finances without fearing what other people think or say.  I am not saying to reject other people’s help or generosity.  Just don’t depend on it.  Depend on the promises of God. 

God Bless

Michael at R2W

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Material Wants 

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It is okay for you to have nice things in your life.  In fact, it is important for you to have nice things.  Whether it is a car or a house or any type of luxury item, if you are living correctly then you will have these things.  Treat yourself to the things in life that you want.  Remember though do not use credit.  If you use wisdom and practice stewardship, you will be able to get nice things without credit.   

Stick To Your  Health Plan 

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The purpose of this article is to convey the importance of staying well.  You will never grow spiritually if you are out of shape and overweight.  I meet many people who are seeking a successful spiritual life but they often fall short.  Many times, it is the lack of proper diet and physical activity that causes them to fall down.  “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your body.”xcv  I often find that this is an overlooked missing link between a mediocre life and a great life.   

Who Do You Want To Be? 

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It’s a great question, but so few people have actually thought much about the answer.  It’s easy to avoid this topic, especially if you have been caught up in the world’s version of success.  You have probably been too busy to think this through logically but you can now. 

Answer this question now.  Don’t just write: I want to be a good person or a better spouse or a better parent.  Describe your life in detail.  Look at every facet of your life.  Write about your relationships, finances, health, spirituality and any other area of your life that you would like to change or improve.  Why are you doing this?  Because you become what you think about.  The Roman emperor, Marcus Aurelius said, “A man’s life is what his thought makes of it.” 

Create A Health Plan 

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I thought about supplying sample exercise plans and sample diets in this article, but I decided against it.  At first, I thought that if I supplied the plans, then more people would follow through.  As I thought about it further, I realized that if somebody were going to follow through, they would be willing to do the work.  I believe that if it is important enough to you and I gave you the facts, you would do the research and figure out exactly what you need to do.  I did not want to influence your health needs with what I do.  You need to figure out what will work best for you. 

Things To Remember While Pursuing Success 

There are several things I ask you to keep in mind as you are learning to grasp this new concept of success.  These tips will help you to thoroughly evaluate where you stand with regards to real success in your life.  Some of them have been mentioned already and all of them will be mentioned again.   

The first thing to remember is that “experts” complicate things.  This is not to say that you shouldn’t seek help or ask for guidance when you need it.  I think seeking advice is very important.  Plans are established by seeking advice…”ix  I am saying you should ask people who are getting the results you are seeking.  Don’t ask someone simply because they are an “expert.”  Also, don’t avoid asking someone, simply because they are not formally educated on a topic. I remember when I used to pay hundreds of dollars to have the brakes done on my car.  The mechanic would make the procedure sound difficult and complicated.  Then one day, without enough money to get a much-needed brake job, I decided to do some research.  What I found was how amazingly simple doing a brake job is.  If you can change a tire you can fix your brakes.x  I have since saved thousands of dollars because I stopped relying on “the experts.” 

What Success is: The Starting Point 

Photo: Emma Watson

Now that we know what success is not, how do we define what it is?  Maybe what you always thought was true has now been turned upside down.  That’s okay.  That’s more than okay; you are now at the starting point of an incredible journey.  One that may even take you places that you never dreamed you would go.  You may even see some old childhood dreams re-emerge.  One thing is for sure, if you stay on the path you have now begun, and work at it continually, you will have real success.  Most of all have fun!  Dale Carnegie once said, “People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.”