NOTE: This is part two of two. You should first read “Was Jesus the Worst Prophet Ever?“
In part one we described how Jesus of Nazareth was either seriously future-vision-challenged . . . or perhaps we have not fully grasped what He meant when He described His mission in John 10.10 as “to give humans Life. And to give them Life in Abundance.”
So What is Abundance?
Abundance is a mindset.
Abundance is a mindset of peace and a life lived so confidently in God and Self that no matter what challenge, circumstance, or event happens — even if your family lives in . . . Australia, say . . . and your friends all abandon you.
And the IRS wrongfully seizes all your assets.
And you get fired from the job you love.
And you are served with divorce papers. Or receive the telephone call informing you a Loved One has died. Or your doctor confirms the worst after your last test.
You know those times. It seems all the lights in the world have gone out and the world is a very bleak and dark place. You can actually feel the dark pressing down upon you and you wonder if you will ever get out of this cave.
Abundance is knowing that is exactly when you and your God shine the brightest. It is Living in the Certainty that you and God have been here before and you probably will be back here again. And you and God always manage to get out in one piece. . . to bond, and to have some fun together while you were doing it! Ahhh, Life is Good!
Abundance is not faith that God has the ability to do something. Living in Abundance is Living with the certainty that She will do it.
Yes, I know. You wanted season tickets to your favorite sports team and music venue. And a promotion at work. And some credit from your kids once in awhile. It wouldn’t suck to have a tad more money, a mansion, and some fame, either.
Despite what you might have heard whispered in your Church, you can have all these things. Jesus is often unfairly misquoted as saying “money is the root of all evil.” He never said that. Never!
J.C. proclaimed that the “Love of money is the root of all evil.” And in doing so, the Wise Carpenter reveals one of the most profound Truths about human life. We do indeed need a house, we need money, and perhaps we even need some status and fame if we are actually going to make disciples of all nations.
None of those things are wrong. Money is not evil. Fame does not equate to being self-centered. Power . . . well, okay, power you have to be pretty careful with . . . but it is not inherently evil. Just Seductive. But, the Truth is Jesus promised all of these to you. Even Power. “Great Power” in Truth. He knows we will never be perfect in this Life . . . and yet He trusts us with “Great Power.” He is Dying for you to have all of these thing. In Abundance. It was His Purpose in coming to this planet! Be clear on that: He wants you to live in abundance.
And you know why we immediately think of wealth, a nice house, and a fast car as indicia of abundance? Because someone living in Abundance almost always possesses all of those material trappings.
But those material things are not elements of abundance. Fame, fortune, and status are the certain by-products of Living in Abundance.
And that is the hilarious irony of abundance: The person who Lives in Abundance does not need any of those showy possessions or material trappings. He or she usually possesses them because they naturally flow into your life when you Live in Abundance.
But a person Living in Abundance is absolutely confident that they possess everything they need to live, within them. The Abundant Life is a life of self-reliance and one firmly rooted in a deep, meaningful relationship with God. And a Life where everything is designed to further the purpose that God gave them in this Life.
Look at Joseph’s life, Daniel’s, or King David’s: these men possessed the same grit and determination to Live Authentically and be true to their purpose at every point in their Life.
It mattered not whether they were living as shepherds or captives . . . or a potential midnight snack for some hungry felines. They Loved God and pursued their purpose exactly the same whether dealing with Potipher’s Wife or Nebuchadnezzar’s forgotten dream. They lived exactly the same when their fortunes improved, each becoming one of the very highest of the elite of the ruling class of a dominant world civilization. In those period of their lives, each possessed power, fame and money beyond the dreams of avarice.
And, yet, they lived the same as they always had lived: In simple yet confident peace, joy, truth and love.
They lived in Abundance.
They lived in Abundance.
May you Live Abundantly,
This was part 2. Return to part 1: “Was Jesus the Worst Prophet Ever?“
In his 21 Suggestions for Success, H. Jackson Brown, Jr. declares as number one: “Marry the right person. This one decision will determine 90% of your happiness or misery.”
“Marry the right person. This one decision will determine 90% of your happiness or misery.” – H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Why we don’t pay this more attention is beyond me. It should be taught to us in school. Required to be memorized before a marriage license is issued. Printed in large letters at any facility where one might go on a date. It probably should be read to us in the womb.
The only question I have with regard to the veracity of Mr. Brown’s First Success Suggestion . . . is whether his affixed percentage is high enough.
Readers of The Prefixed Life know that we preach about how to make significant changes in life, we must accept 100% responsibility for each area of our life: For our job, where we live, our income level, physical health, etc. But are we really 100% responsible for our Love Life?
What if I am living some place where it is not just a funny saying, but in truth there simply are no ‘good men’ left? Or, perhaps my ex-girlfriend went psycho and slept with every single guy at the bar one night because I implied she wasn’t a good reader? Or maybe my spouse and I argue every single night? Am I really responsible for another person, even when they act irresponsibly? Even if I check with my friends and my therapist and even my lawyer . . .and they all agree I am behaving perfectly while my partner . . . is clearly the one who is mostly at fault? Even then?
Well, no, of course. You cannot control how another person acts. Nor should you — even if you possessed that power.
So accepting 100% responsibility might not ‘technically’ be completely accurate.
But failing to accept 100% responsibility for your love life will almost certainly result in you spending months, if not years, in maintaining romantic relationships that ultimately fail. But that never happens in a vacuum. Those fleeting, ephemeral, unsatisfying relationships bring with them immense amounts of fear, pain, rejection, heartbreak, yelling, regret and left-upright toilet seats.
And all in exchange for what? Not much, in truth. Not in the long run.
Accepting 100% responsibility for your love life will have you weed those potential partners out quickly. Often in a single date. Accepting 100% responsibility will keep you in a space where whenever Prince or Princess Charming walks into your life – and it will not be long after you take full control of this area of your life — you will know it immediately and can start planning your fulfilling life together.
Don’t believe it?
Fine. Look, you can read this article and go right back to lying to yourself . . . if that’s what you want to do. But…wouldn’t it be a whole lot easier to simply admit something is jacked up in your Love Life, figure out what it is, fix it, and find the man or woman of your dreams?!?
And no, I am not talking about “someone who completes you.” That line from Jerry Macguire, complete with the music and emotional anchoring, did no favors to anyone who is single.
You know this. You have always known this: No human relationship that rests on “being completed” is EVER going to work. . . only God makes those relationships work — and look at the headaches He has getting us to buy in to surrendering to that kind of relationship.
NO! You must accept 100% responsibility for your life SO you may become complete! Once you do that, the right person will walk into your life. The perfect person for you. The one with whom you can celebrate your completeness together! Doesn’t that sound a lot more fun and fulfilling? Find the One with whom you can celebrate your completeness together!
You must be complete. NOT perfect! Complete. Anything less will doom your relationship with another human before it even begins. Be clear on that.
And, yes, once you accept this Truth and make a 100% personal commitment that nothing less is acceptable, that you will do whatever it takes to get to that place . . . once we let go of the ridiculous cattle-excrement-laden stories we tell ourselves, our lives begin to change at ludicrous speed.
It is is certainly easy to blame.
It is is certainly easy to blame. Our society practically conditions us out of the womb to learn how to blame others. And how could we not follow this conditioning? We still consider ourselves a “Christian nation’ here in the U.S. Look at the central role blame takes and how heavily it factors into the very first story we read in Christendom, where after taking the forbidden fruit and being confronted by God about it, Adam manages to blame both Eve and God by suggesting the fault was properly attributed to, “that woman You gave me.” Eve, in turn, tried to roll over on the serpent as the primary cause for the appearance on Earth of ‘sin’ and disobedience.
And yet, we usually smirk as we read the Genesis account. Neither Adam’s nor Eve’s feeble attempt to place the blame elsewhere seems particularly credible to us. Is it possible that attempting to blame someone or something else ALWAYS comes across as ridiculous and ALWAYS makes us look exceedingly foolish?
Perhaps after this many years since Adam and Eve it is time for us humans to grow a little bit, evolve if you will, and mature as a species?
We all know, deep down, that all blame really does is keep us mired in mediocrity. We all know that. Why are we so adamant that we wish to continue sucking? Is our pride and ego really that fragile?
Okay. Fine. I am in. Where do I begin?
I admit I am 100% responsible and accept 100% responsibility for my Love Life!
(Click here for Part II of this post)
We are all in this together.
All eight billion of us.
Really. We are. Our fates are intertwined.
Are we going to continue to let government, business interests, and religion tell us who “our enemies are” and let YouTube, Google, and conspiracy theorists pit ‘them’ vs. ‘us’?
What if we refused to accept the suggestion, for any reason, that there was a them?
What if we decided to become adamant there is only an us?
Take a minute to reflect on what the world would be like if each of us decided there is only a we. What if we decided that our family, all 8 billion of us, were in this together? What if we looked out for each other and had each other’s back?
By choosing to focus on what unites us rather than what separates us, we can change the world. In Truth, if we decided to do this, the question would not be IF we could change the world . . . or even HOW MUCH we could change the world.
The only question would be: Would we officially have to change the name “Earth” to “Heaven“? Or, does that happen automatically?
* * *
Everyone has a heart.
Every heart wants to love and be loved.
You never know what every person you meet is going through.
That person passing you in the hall may have just lost a loved one.
The person in the elevator may be suicidal.
You never know the hurt hiding behind the mask.
You never know the battle they are waging within.
You could be standing next to someone completely broken.
So don’t withhold your smile. Never withdraw your good will.
Always provide hope to every single person you meet. Hope may be all that they possess.
Let us connect them with the love in our heart
. . . and with the network of Love all around us.
Take a minute now to decide you will do this today. Be grateful for something. And tell yourself nothing is worth withdrawing your love or your smile from anyone you meet today.
Remember: Life is hard. God is great.
Do your best not to reverse them.
The Truth is that each of us creates everything that is in our Life.
Every single thing: every person, event and circumstance that is in our Life is there because we created it.
I know, I know: If you grew up in Judeo-Christian culture, like me, this may seem shocking. Perhaps even blasphemous. No one is saying you are THE Creator.
But you are A creator.
Everything in our Lives is present because we created it. There are NO coincidences. Luck is something that exists in fairy tales only.
The corollary of that Truth is: when we attempt to resist things, or ‘fix’ our circumstances, or push people or events out of our Life – we deny our creatorship (again, notice the lower-case ‘c’ in creatorship).
But let’s go ahead and explore the obvious parallel: Did you ever notice the way the story teller in Genesis describes God’s reactions during the week of creation? After creating each item, what does God say?
“It is good.”
The storyteller never indicates God said, “Oooh, check Me out! That is perfect.”
On the other hand, He never says, “Ooops. Big mistake over yonder.”
He doesn’t say it. He says after each day’s toil, “it is good.”
When we come to the place where we can survey our Life; when we can assess everything we have created in our Life: the Joy, the Truth, and everything Loving . . . as well as the pain, the ugliness, and what we fear — when we can gaze upon it all and proclaim: “I did that.” “I created all this.”
“. . . and it is good.”
When we accomplish that feat, our entire Life changes.
When we can accept what is in our Life, without blame or condemnation . . . when we reach the place where we stop judging everything, especially ourselves, and Love instead. . .
Guaranteed. Or you will get a refund of 100% of the money you have spent reading this post!