Living well in spite of slavery that still exists!

Many people seem to desire wealth and lots of it. Mainly because it can get you nearly anything that you desire. Depending on how much your desires cost and how much wealth you have, of course, you can truly have almost anything that is available for sale in the world. The really sad and cruel part of this story is that even today, slavery is still prevalent in the world. I know that many will say that it isn’t in the so-called developed countries, but it is. It is hidden behind facades that disguise it so that it doesn’t look like slavery or it is hidden from view altogether, but it is there.

The sad part about this is that we don’t have to have slavery at all. It wasn’t needed even when it was “popular” in developed nations of over a century ago, but it existed because evil existed in their hearts. I say, evil because not only did they treat people as property, to be bought and sold and used as they saw fit, but they also used and quoted scripture out of context to justify do it.

My title is “Living well because **** “, and I know that slavery has nothing to do with living well, but (there’s that word again) people can change and many countries and cultures which used slaves have changed. Yet, slavery still exists. Today, the slave trade is in children and women and men for sex slaves, which to me is even worse than in previous times. I know about the use of slaves as mistresses, but today’s slaves are used by perverted, cruel people (men mostly) who care nothing for their slaves except for how they can used them and abuse them.

Living well in today’s society means finding these people and exposing them or rescuing the slaves that have been taken, against their will, into this life. They did not want it, but they were placed in bondage and all that we see in the news is that some girl or boy child is missing.

Nobody knows where they went or what happened and for many, there will never be any news about recovery or rescue. Everyone will forget about their story and move on after a week or so and they will be forgotten, even today with all of the ways to communicate. What has happened to our society and the people in it that causes us to forget about people and news that are truly valuable as soon as the news is over?

Why don’t we care about each other in the way that Christ wanted us to? Why can’t we at least try to be like Him in our everyday life? Is life that crappy? Is it really that bad to be like Jesus? Yes, in a world where slavery still exists, life is crappy but living for Jesus and like Him makes a HUGE difference in your life and in the lives of those around you! People will see the change in you and in your character and your work ethic. Everything in your life will be changed for the better because of Him. God loves you and He always has!

The subject of this essay, post, or whatever you want to call it is a subject that people don’t want to talk about. Because it is supposed to be in our past and not present in modern times, but it is! The slavery that is present now is more demeaning and cruel than that of over a century ago. Why? Because it mostly involves children being kidnapped and forced into a life of being sex slaves and they end up addicted to drugs just so they don’t feel or care what is being done to them! Yes, the slavery that was perpetrated in America was a crime against humanity, because we are all made in God‘s image regardless of our skin color. But, what is being done by these perverts is worse because it is being done by grown men mostly with young boys and girls, some as young as eight!

I know that I have been writing upbeat articles about how to live and be successful in life, but this needs to come to the attention of many more people than just someone like me and those who read this. If you will forward this to someone who might bring attention to this outrage before it really gets out of hand in our world.

Living well in our culture

The culture that we live in, whatever it may be, determines our focus. What we believe, why we believe and how we believe, regardless of the object of our belief. So, what is your cultural belief? Is it religious or secular? Is it centered around a religion or is it atheistic?

Living well means that we are enjoying life. In what manner we enjoy our life is determined by our beliefs and the morality that we were taught while growing up. There are many who think that as long as you aren’t hurting anyone, it doesn’t matter what you do as long as you are enjoying it.

What is your focus in life? Is it materialistic? Do you think that whoever dies with the most toys wins? Especially if they are expensive toys? OK, if that is your belief then who gets your toys when you die? You can’t take them with you and it is for sure that you won’t enjoy them from that point on. What is the point in a person’s life in acquiring more “stuff”, expensive or not, when that stuff can’t help you in life at all!

Yes, some stuff can impress people but today is that necessary? Some people say “yes”, but why? Do you really need or even want some “thing” to impress people about you or should they be impressed with your character and your life? Truly, they should be impressed with you and your character, not what you are wearing or driving.

Stuff, is just like idols from ancient times. We worship things like cars, jobs, and positions even though many don’t realize that we place far more importance in these things than we should. Many times, we look at the beauty of a car, or the salary that we are getting from our job or the position that it affords us in society and we don’t see that we are putting too much emphasis on those and not on our personal integrity.

Is it possible to have integrity in your sales position or your specific job, whatever it may be? Do you check the advice that you give to others with your conscience, your own moral code before you give it? Have you considered that life and health and your job all follow each other? How healthy you are is reflected in your life, but it also affects your job and your performance in that job. If your health is not so good, then it will show in other areas of your life. If you are having problems at home, regardless of the kind of problems they are, they will be reflected in your job and in your health.

Your faith in God can help in all of these situations, whether you have faith in Him will affect all of these situations because He is the source of truth and conscience in our lives whether we admit to it or not. Many of the wise sayings that are accepted in our culture come from God’s Word. They may not be quoted that way and it may not be shown as the source, but much of the wisdom that is in so-called “self-help” books that are so popular has its basis in Biblical wisdom.

His love and compassion for all of us was and is shown through the grace that is given to us each day that we wake up to a new day. We should cherish it as a gift, thank Him for it and purpose to do with it something which will edify and glorify Him in the process. In doing this, our life will be blessed, our job will be blessed, the customers that we serve will be blessed and our stress levels will be far less than they would’ve been. Think about it.

Successful living is like walking

It is true that this is a recurring theme on this blog as well as in life, but everyone wants to know how to do it don’t they? Can you learn how to do this? Yes, but it takes work. It is not something that you can just get out of a box or from an e-mail, and it is not an instant, overnight fix for a life that is out of kilter.

Just like living a regular life, whether that life is one that includes fame and fortune or one that is full of strife, heartache, pain and otherwise unpleasant things which make such a life miserable, a successful life is one lived while doing what you enjoy doing.

But, there is not an instant fix or an easy way of making money like you see in the emails or advertisements. Contrary to the popular sites and so-called “strategies”, instant wealth without work just doesn’t exist. The idea that you can get something for nothing has been around for a long time and many people have fallen for it.

The point is that along with a successful life, your attitude toward that life has to be on point with your dreams and your reality. If you are trying to grasp a life that, in reality, is out of your reach it is not futile but you do need to step back and take a deep breath. I don’t mean that you need to think it to death, whatever it may be, but you do need to look at your situation and make sure of the direction that you are trying to go.

It may be hard or difficult to do the thing that you are trying to do, but nothing that is worth doing is really easy. I know that you have heard that before but it is true. Getting something for nothing just doesn’t happen, except with your salvation. That is the only priceless purchase that you can make with nothing from you. Jesus paid the price, all that you have to do is repent of your old life and tell Jesus that you want a new one.

Taking the first step toward a life of freedom, regardless of what kind of freedom it is, is always the right decision. But, if you don’t take that step, you will never know how it feels! Being free from debt or sin is not easy or quick. Most people think that when you get out of debt, then you will never be in debt again, but unless you have truly changed your spending habits it will happen again!

It is the same with sin, when a Christian is still a babe in Christ, fresh in their faith, your old habits will come back. The sins have been forgiven, but your life hasn’t been reset like a computer! Forgiveness happens from above, the change in your heart and your character is a process that takes time. Time alone with God, time spent studying His Word and lots of prayer. Nothing is instantaneous, salvation is given to you through Christ when you accept Him but the change in you happens gradually.

Like the man in the book, “The Richest man in Babylon”, wealth comes a little at a time and it is the same with a Christian’s life. It doesn’t happen like turning on a light, but it is like building a home. The foundation is laid first, then the framework of the building, then the flooring and walls are framed in, etc. In a Christian life and a business person’s life, success is also gained by taking steps toward your goal, but you have to take those steps. Some of those are easy, and some are difficult but nothing is impossible.

Can we decide to live?

Deciding to live our lives in relation to our dreams and our hopes is something that we should do, but do we do it? Many people look at their lives literally and think that there is no place for dreams or hope in some people’s lives. They just give up on their dreams and stop chasing them. The settle for a paycheck and a job that they hate or dislike and then they feel bitter and resentful because they chose to settle for something rather than going after what they really want in life.

Living requires action in one way or another. You have to get up out of bed, go to the loo and then eat something so you will have the energy to get through your day. Of course you also have to take a bus ride or drive to work, eat lunch, work at whatever job you may have, then drive home and hope you get there in one piece.

We live in a mixed up world, one that is fraught with pain, hardship, loneliness, fear and anxiety which has caused the drug companies to become so wealthy that they dictate to the government what can and cannot be used or advertised as a “medical breakthrough”.

Can we make a true “living wage” without all of those side-effects described above? Yes, we probably can but will it be fulfilling for us? Will we enjoy doing it or will it be just another way to tell someone a lie about something so that they will buy it from us? Will we…can we do this while telling the truth about what we are doing? Can we make a living while letting others know the truth about what we are doing and why?

For many people, the answer would be “no”, simply because in today’s world you can’t be totally honest about what you are selling and why you are selling it. Whether it is a law firm, a construction company, a candy company or a person selling shoes or cars, you can’t be totally truthful with everyone about the product being sold. And when the truth is missing from the transaction, that is when the anxiety and stress start to show up between the seller and the potential buyer.

The only “product” that I can be totally truthful about is something which I can’t sell or make money from and it is my faith in Jesus and the good news about Him! I can be totally honest and truthful about it because if I am not, then I shouldn’t be a writer or a blogger and certainly not a pastor.

Jesus loves us and came to Israel as a baby so that He could atone for all of the sins of mankind, not just His people. He died for all of us and that is the “product” that I have, this is the Truth that is told in detail in God’s Word. It is not a product that can be sold, but must be given away because God’s grace is free to all! How can we use these principles to live successfully? By following the wisdom that is contained in it and using it in our daily lives and our business.

Think about it, pray about it, look up the book of Proverbs and read it because it does have a lot of advice for personal and business ventures and doing it the right way.

 

Making a living successfully

Can you make a living at something that you enjoy? Yes, you can but you have to find out what that is first.

Make a plan, work your plan, this is advice given by many coaches on sports fields and in business. So how can we do this? First, of course, is finding out what it is that you want to do or can do that you enjoy doing. Can this be something that you can make into a job that you love? I am not sure.

Many people like to do things which are not marketable as products or services so it is possible that they may not be made into a viable vocation. But, think about this for a minute, is there anything in your daily job that you enjoy doing. If it is, then do this in the best way that you can, treat your job or even your boss as someone that you are trying to impress. Many people do this anyway, but I am not speaking of “sucking up” to anyone. I am talking about treating your job and your boss as if they are the most important person in the world. Also, I am not talking about being a brown-nose (nasty term btw), but what I am speaking of is treating your job and the things that you do in it as the most important job in the world.

Why am I trying to get people to treat their job as the most important job that they may ever hold? In the times that we live in today, our job, whatever it is, just may be the most important one that we have. Although, if you are a parent or a teacher or maybe a pastor then your job is already very important. Because you hold the future of those in your care in your hands or in the words that you speak to them. They are learning from you regardless of the way you say the words, or the truth that you are teaching. Children, whether they are babes in Christ or your children or children in school, learn from what they hear and see you doing, so model the best behavior and morals that you can. They deserve it.

Plan your job, your life around what is most important to you. Work your plan to the best of your ability. Give your life to Christ and allow Him to successfully live through your life and your vocation, because if you decide that you are working for Him then you will do your best at anything and everything that you do!

Living successfully in an upside-down world

In the world today many people are living from paycheck to paycheck if they have one. The question is “Do you live for working or do you work for a living?”

Many people would likely say that it is the same thing. I however don’t think so. For example, do you get up in the morning looking forward to getting to work so that you can accomplish as much as you can today because today is a beautiful day? Or, do you get up feeling tired before getting out of bed, and you are almost hating the drive to work let alone the day ahead?

The first example/question would be someone who lives for working because they are doing something that they love to do and they enjoy doing it. It is not a chore or a bore and it is fulfilling to them. The second is a person who is working for a living wage in order to pay bills and nothing more. Their job is not fulfilling and not something that they truly enjoy, instead it is a job that they are qualified to do and they can do it well enough to get paid for it, period.

Which would you rather have? Something that is a joy to do and that you actually get paid for or something that you have to do because you have bills to pay? Most people would choose the first of those, but how hard is it to find such a job? Does a job like this exist for every person out there?  The answer may surprise you.

I will post back tomorrow with more on this. Thank you for reading and please leave a comment or two.