Archives For February 2014

Strange Magic

Brad Stanton —  February 27, 2014 — 2 Comments

Snapshot_20120128_5This is an ancient story with a powerful moral for a better life:

The wife of a dead man cried out to a powerful man, “My husband is dead, he owed money to people. Now they are coming to take my two boys as slaves to pay off the debt.”

The powerful man replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?”

“Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a small jar of olive oil.”

He said, “Go around and ask all your neighbors for empty jars. Don’t ask for just a few. Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each is filled, put it to one side.”

She left him and shut the door behind her and her sons. They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. When all the jars were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another one.”

But he replied, “There is not a jar left.” Then the oil stopped flowing.

She went and told the man, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.”

I heard this story when I was young and said to myself, wow, what would I have done if I was in that situation? If I had a lot of faith in what the powerful man said, I would get dozens of empty jars. The more jars I got, the more oil I would get, and therefore more money.

What would you do if a powerful man told you to go get empty jars and fill them from one small jar that you had in your house?

Some would not believe magic would happen, they might get mad at the powerful man and say “Hey, I asked you for money and all you do is tell me to pour out my oil into other jars? What a waste!”

Other people would go to the store and spend every penny they had on jars, and ask every friend for their jars too. Other people would be somewhere in the middle, getting half a dozen jars or so.

What would you do?

Jesus said that if you have faith the size of a mustard seed nothing will be impossible for you. Seems hard to believe, doesn’t it? Very few people believe it. Very few Christians believe it.

I have had the privilege of seeing countless miracles around the world. Seeing all those miracles made me realize there is enormous supernatural power in the world. Some call it magic.

So if you want to be honest about the answer to my question, what would you do if you were that woman, you would look at how you respond to what Jesus said in Mark 9:23 “Everything is possible for one who believes.”  Or John 14:14 You may ask me for anything in my name and I will do it. If you believe these words, you probably would have gotten lots of jars. But if you believe these words, you can still get lots of “jars.” If you have faith, opportunities to do great things for God will present themselves to you. You can not only serve God and help others, but you will be rewarded here on earth and in eternity (forever). If you have a choice between blessings that last forever or last for a short time, pick forever. You are probably thinking, “Duh Brad.”

John 15:7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you

John 16:23  I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

The problem is we have prayed dozens of times, maybe hundreds of times and didn’t see answers to our prayers so we assume the words of Jesus are either untrue or we are misunderstanding them. But stop and think about it. The apostles spent 3 years with Jesus, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It took them that long to develop faith that enabled them to perform miracles. If you think you can spend just 30 minutes with God each day and get that kind of faith in just a few years, you are pretty arrogant. Sorry to say it that way. Faith takes years to develop. But it is worth every single minute of the time it takes to develop faith because Jesus really did mean what he said in John 14:12 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.

I have seen enough miracles that I can promise you these words are true. When I pray, I see more and more miracles every year.

Every penny I make from my book “Keys To Powerful Prayer” goes to spread faith, hope and love to people around the world through this blog and charity. https://www.createspace.com/4540174 Doing the research for this book really changed my life for the better. CreateSpace is an Amazon company. Or read sample pages of the same book as an ebook on Amazon entitled “Amazing Power of Prayer.” http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008EOCODK

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神 爱 你,并 且 为 你 的 生 命 有 一 奇 妙 的 计 划。

“He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” ~Jim Elliot

“No matter where you are, no matter how difficult things might appear to be, you are always being moved toward magnificence. Always.” Rhonda Byrne

God adores you and is guiding you and communicating with you every hour of every day. In fact, his Spirit, the Holy Spirit is helping you every second of every day. Of course he speaks to you through the Bible, but he also guides you with your conscience. It is through something that we feel, or that we know is true or right that he guides us.

Contrary to what some people think, God is not judging you. We know from the Bible that God is bragging on us in heaven. That’s what he did for Job in the Old Testament. Sure, God does discipline us sometimes, but just because it is for our good. He is a heavenly father who loves us more then we love ourselves.

Love, joy and peace are some of the fruits of the spirit. When you don’t feel joyful it means you are thinking about things you don’t love. When you think of things you don’t love it ruins your peace and causes negative emotions.

Tune in to communication with God as much as you can. The more you do it, the easier it gets and the more often you can do it. God is always there, loving you and guiding you, but you have to listen.

It has been said that God cares more about your character than your comfort. But he cares more about your happiness than you do. Just as an earthly father makes a child get up a go to school even when it is cold outside, God disciplines us to do what is best for us.

Does this sound selfish? Well, if all we care about is ourselves, then yes, it is. The only way to truly be happy in life is to love God because that is the purpose for which we were created. A man usually doesn’t like wearing women’s clothes in public because he was not created that way. A greyhound doesn’t like being in the house all day, he likes to be outside where he can run. Fish don’t like being out of water because they were created to be in water. If you don’t love God, you are not doing what you were created to do and it leaves an empty hole in the soul. It leaves discomfort or loneliness, dissatisfaction of some kind.

Loving God puts you on a higher plane. It not only pleases God, but it also makes your spirit stronger. Your spirit lasts forever, your body only lasts for a short time. Jesus told us to store up treasure in heaven because it lasts forever and we don’t have to worry about losing it.

When I was a kid I would spend all my money on fireworks on the 4th of July. All the money I saved would be blown up in a matter of days. It was fun, and it seemed worth it, but now I want to save treasure that will last forever. It would be foolish to work only for money or fame or anything that lasts this lifetime only. This life is over as quickly as the blink of an eye in the grand scheme of things.

Every penny I make from my book “Keys To Powerful Prayer” goes to spread faith, hope and love to people around the world through this blog and charity. https://www.createspace.com/4540174 Doing the research for this book really changed my life for the better. CreateSpace is an Amazon company. Or read sample pages of the same book as an ebook on Amazon entitled “Amazing Power of Prayer.” http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008EOCODK


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神 爱 你,并 且 为 你 的 生 命 有 一 奇 妙 的 计 划。

Do you believe that you reap what you sow? In other words do you actually get the results that you caused to come about by your actions? I include a fun mental exercise at the end of this post. This post will be hard for many people to understand.

Negative thoughts bring about some sort of negative consequence. Negative thoughts are those dealing with the fearsome foursome:

1. Fear  2. Anger  3. Depression  4. Guilt

It is said that all negative thoughts fall into one or more of these four categories. For example, worry is a kind of fear. Shame is a form of guilt. Sadness is a form of depression. Frustration and lack of forgiveness is anger.

These negative thoughts cause the body to make toxic chemicals flow into the bloodstream. They also tend to bring about more negative thoughts, more intense negative thoughts. If a person keeps thinking negative thoughts it almost always causes him to do negative things or say negative words that can cause serious problems. A business speaker said that negative thoughts can put enough toxins in the blood stream of a man or woman that if you drew a sample of blood and injected it into a rat, it would kill the rat.

If we sow positive thoughts we get stronger and more loveable. To think about things that we like, love or are attracted to is sowing positive thoughts. We are able to deal with pressure at work better, handle relationships better and just about every aspect of life. Love is the most powerful force in the universe. Love makes a person stronger and happier. This is true for every person and it is true all the time.

Isaac Newton said that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. This is a law of nature that has been proven for hundreds of years in physics. But the amazing thing is that this is just another way of saying you reap what you sow. Some call it the Law of Attraction or Karma.

People who are successful in life (by just about any definition of success) are the ones who think positive thoughts and therefore use the power of love. Some achieve great success through hard work and talent, some have little talent but apply lots of hard work and the power of love.

An Olympic athlete competes because he loves the sport or he loves the idea of becoming a champion or he loves being in front of a crowd of people. He/she has to somehow be attracted to a sport. That person has to have faith, or you could call it confidence, that he can do well at the sport, otherwise he won’t be willing to do the work required to be successful.

If you want the life of your dreams, visualize it every day, love the idea and have faith. Be willing to love your work so that you work hard. The more you visualize it and love the idea, the stronger you will become. Think about things your like, food you like, places you like, things you like, TV shows, music, movies, sports, food that you like.

Many believe that everything that happens to you is a result of what you sowed, or planted in life with your thoughts, words or actions. Some don’t want to believe it because it puts too much pressure on them. Others want to believe it because it means that they can control everything that happens in their life. What do you think? Leave a reply and let us know.

Exercise:

Imagine for five minutes that you really can control everything that happens to you by reaping what you sow. What would you sow? How would you live your life? What would you do and think about? Many of the most respected life coaches say that you really do control your life. If you believe in God, and that he has the power to control everything and that he loves you, it becomes easy to believe that you reap what you sow, and reap only what you sow. Why did the Apostle Paul emphasize this point so much? Galatians 6:7 “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.”

Ten Keys to Success https://bradstanton.com/10-keys-to-success/

Hope and attitude

Brad Stanton —  February 21, 2014 — 3 Comments

200 (5)Step 5: Hope and attitude. These two are very important. Most big US companies realize that attitude is one of the most important qualities in a person. People with hope and a good attitude are the ones that do a great job.

Hebrews 3:6 NIV But Christ is faithful as a son over God’s house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast.

Hebrews 11:6 NIV And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

Attitude
Chuck Swindoll
The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.
Attitude to me is more important than facts.
It’s more important than the past, than education, than money,
than circumstances, than failures, than successes,
than what other people think or do.
It’s more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill.
It will make or break a company, a church, a home.
The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day
regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day.
We cannot change the inevitable.
The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have,
and that is our attitude.
I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me,
and 90% how I react to it.
And so it is with you.

Persistence
Author Unknown
Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not…nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not…unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not…the world is full of educated derelicts.
The slogan “Press On” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

The Serenity Prayer
Reinhold Neibuhr-1926 (maybe)
God grant me
the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the Courage to change the things I can,
and the Wisdom to know the difference;
Living one day at a time;
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace;
Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is,
not as I would have it:
Trusting that you will make all things right
if I surrender to your will;
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with you forever in the next.

Goals. I write about this because after studying goals I found that people who have clear, definite, written goals are the ones who are successful. A study showed that the 5% of people who graduated from Harvard with clear, definite goals were more successful than the 95% who graduated without goals.

First, pray about your goals.

Second, write them down. A goal is not a goal unless you write it down and put it somewhere you will see it often. More in two days.

My book “Keys To Powerful Prayer” is now in paperback. https://www.createspace.com/4540174 Doing the research for this book really changed my life for the better. CreateSpace is an Amazon company.

Have a happier life

Brad Stanton —  February 19, 2014 — 2 Comments

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“You will never amount to anything if you keep drawing all the time!” Walt Disney’s father told him this as a child. Guess he was wrong-his movies have been seen by most people in the world and are famous in most countries. He started his movie company as an artist.

Ideas for quitting any bad habit, including over-eating.

Step 3: Step out of denial. (Continued from 2/17/2014)
One of the most important ways to change our behavior (in this case our thinking) is to realize that we need to make changes in our life. Most people deny they have problems that need to be changed and in doing this they bring problems upon themselves. That is why I write a lot about this portion of the five steps.

Denial disables our feelings. When we deny we have a problem we can’t think clearly because we can’t see the mountain that is in front of us. Denial tends to cause anxiety. We often regret the past and worry about the future. Live today. Don’t worry about the future, God will take care of that. Don’t regret the past, there is nothing we can do about it anyway. Make a clean start. Don’t let the heavy loads of anxiety hold you down.

Matthew 11:28-30 NIV
28“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Philippians 4:4-7 NLT
4Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again–rejoice! 5Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon. 6Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

To step out of denial we need to ask those who know us best what our problems are. This is a very difficult thing to do. Ask them to tell you in love and be gentle, not blaming or criticizing. After they tell you what your problem is, be ready to work on it and really change with the help of the Holy Spirit.

Step 4: Realize that we, by ourselves, are powerless to overcome the problem. Turn the problem over to God.
Have you heard the old saying “Let go and let God?” It really does work, but it takes time and effort to really turn a problem over to God. The Bible says that willpower is actually the Holy Spirit’s power.

In the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, the first step is to admit that we are powerless to overcome the problem. This is not just for alcoholics. In fact, this is for everyone who has any kind of bad habit, and lets face it, we all do. Everyone has habits that they would like to change. Everyone has done things they regret and feel embarrassed about. We all have skeletons in the closet. But when we admit that we can’t fix the problem in our own power and that we need help from God, that is when the Holy Spirit can come into our life and really change things.

Matthew 5:3 NIV
3“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

To be poor in spirit is the opposite of being arrogant. To be poor in spirit means that we understand that we are not all powerful, only God is. He is willing to help us if we ask him. We understand that we just can’t do it by ourselves. There is plenty of evidence of that, years of failure, right?

Romans 7:18-20 NIV
18I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do–this I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

Notice this says that nothing good lives in us. Well, of course we all have a good part and a bad part in our selves. The good often battles the bad. It is like two dogs fighting. It turns out that the side of us that we feed more will grow stronger and win the battle. How do we feed the good side? By prayer, Bible reading, doing good deeds, helping people. How do we feed the bad? By doing bad things. Once we become a Christian the bad side of us is killed. We are no longer a slave to the evil in us. Read Romans chapter six, seven and eight carefully. Memorize parts of it and it will change your life. Read those three chapters every day for 30 days and you will have a new attitude about your life. You will be transformed. I memorized all of chapter six and most of chapter seven some years ago. It was worth the time and effort.

“Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them-a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have the skill, and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill.” ~Muhammad Ali-world champion boxer.

Doing the research for this book really changed my life for the better. My book “Keys To Powerful Prayer” is now in paperback. https://www.createspace.com/4540174 CreateSpace is an Amazon company.