Just this past week, I was having a discussion with someone about the value of church. This time I decided to do more listening than talking and I can say I was very intrigued by the points that were made. I wholeheartedly agreed with most of them, though it did not deter me from my belief that church is essential to those who desire to operate in the things of God.
The discussion was about why people attend church for years and never move on the faith that they claim to hold so dear to them. How can people be under a Word for so many years and continue to live unsatisfied with where they are in life? If you truly believe that faith is both acting and believing… why are so many of them not doing either? I went on to explain that though it may not look like they are where they should be, you have no idea how far they’ve come. One also cannot neglect the importance of free will. I don’t care how many checks people hand you, if you never cash them or make a deposit at the bank, they’re just slips of paper. The lack of action on your part doesn’t affect the value of the checks, you just won’t reap the benefit until you do your part. I could go on about the conversation but I’d rather bring light to an article that I read just a few days after that put a lot of things into perspective. God is truly always there to reaffirm what we believe, even when we least expect it.
The article comes from Essence.com by Paul Carrick Brunson, whom I’ve had the pleasure to meet. He is true example of stepping out on faith and seeing things come to pass that far outweighed the scope of his imagination. Check out his “9 Ways to Keep Believing:”
Believe In Yourself and Your Plan ~by Paul Carrick Brunson
Growing up, many people told me, “Paul, one day you’re going to be on Oprah’s daytime talk show. One day, you’re going to sit on that famous couch.” I heard this so many times. I truly believed it with all of my heart. I became obsessed with “getting on Oprah’s couch.” Then, a year before Oprah’s final season, I saw that time was running out and the window was closing. I wasn’t going to be interviewed by the Queen of talk after all, I realized.
Now, let me show you how God works: Last week, Oprah visited me at my office in Kingsland, GA. She sat on “my” couch and I interviewed her. Of course, this is all for our upcoming LoveTown USA show, premiering on the OWN network this summer, but the point is, God’s plan for us is greater than we can imagine. Our job is to believe it!
That said, believing in ourselves and our plan is not easy. If you’re having a hard time believing in your greater purpose, here are nine ways to help:
Identify Your Values
What do you live for? It’s hard to know where you’re going unless you know who you are. Identify and prioritize your values. It’ll be clearer to you what you need in life (and therefore, what’s most important) opposed to what you simply want.
Train Your Belief System
Everything you will have in your life will come about because of your belief that they’re possible. The first step to training your belief system is to use affirmations. Affirmations like “Why am I so confident? Why do I believe in myself? Why do I trust my intuition?” are empowering questions that focus your mind on why you are, in fact, confident.
Watch Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address
It’s one of the most inspirational speeches I’ve watched on having faith in your purpose. This video is a different kind of soul food!
It’s important to realize that no one has ever fallen while stepping out on faith. I think about this single point daily.
Toughen Your Skin
No one ever succeeds without being rejected (many times). Expect to hear the word “no” time after time, and you’ll be ready to overcome, time after time.
This is critical towards bolstering your self-esteem, which is an imperative part of stepping into your purpose. Next time someone gives you a compliment, resist the urge to dismiss it, or think to yourself that the person didn’t mean it. Instead, imagine it is true, and you might just find that it is.
Surround Yourself With People Who Believe In You
Jim Rohn says you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with – he has a point. The common denominator I find in people who excel is that they surround themselves with folks who not only excel in their own right but believe in the potential of their friends.
Fake It Until You Make It
This begins with simply speaking confidently and assertively (even if you you’re not). By simply speaking in a strong manner, you will see you have greater control over your ability to influence. As a result, your actual confidence will grow.
Force Yourself Into the Habit of Believing
Some people are born with an innate self-confidence, but most of us are not that lucky. It’s a good thing we can teach ourselves new habits. Most experts agree it only takes 30 days to change your behavior. Just like a good exercise program, use the suggestions I gave to map out over the next 30 days what you will do daily to boost your “belief muscle.”
Tuesday with Bianca