You Can Set A Higher Standard (The Chipmunks Story)

Tony Evans. The impact of a lowered standard leaves its scars no matter what race, income bracket, or community a person is in.

3 Things You Can Do to Live by A Higher Standard

Sitting at the kitchen table today I watched as chipmunks scurried around the backyard on their daily routine. As I have been doing for the last few weeks, I stepped out onto the back porch and put some nuts for them to eat. Initially I did this with some pistachios thinking that chipmunks have a higher standard than squirrels. They’re dainty and cute, right? But, today I put out some walnuts. LOL. And, the day before yesterday it was peanut butter sandwich crackers (the sweet kind)… so much for higher standards!

Anyway, I would put the nuts into the planter vases outside hoping to catch an animal on camera eating from the planters. I wasn’t able to until to get one on camera but I have been able to watch them eat from the planters the last couple of days.

It seems that the chipmunks have a routine they follow that begins about 10 am. So, I was sitting at the kitchen table this morning eating a bowl of cereal and patiently waiting for Alvin and his brothers to arrive. It was a good morning.

Alvin and the Chipmunks

ALL DAY FORAGING

I have become attached to watching the animals work in the backyard. The robins hunting for insects and worms. The smaller birds playing at my neighbors bird-feeder. The squirrels foraging. And, of course, the tiny chipmunk scurrying to and fro. They never seem to slow down. One speed: git ‘r dun!

I love how animals hold themselves to a higher standard. All day they’re looking for nuggets. Scratching for nuggets. Hunting for crumbs. They put in work because they’re hungry now. Here’s the thing…

They get enough to feed them today and enough to stash away for a rainy day. They keep on stashing so they have enough left over for the winter because they live by a higher standard. YESSIR!!

In my watching, I have noticed some things that I want to share with you today. Before getting into my other points, I should probably point out the fact that these are some of the smallest animals in the yard but they get it done. All day they are foraging and picking up nuggets. It kinda reminded me of myself lately. All day I’m reading and studying. Writing and working. Picking up nuggets of wisdom that I can make use of in my life.

I’m filling my head with nuggets. Why can’t you do the same? Keep coming back I’ll keep bring what I find home to the nest.

BRING THE BOUNTY BACK TO THE NEST

One thing that I notice is that unlike most of the other animals, the chipmunk seems to bring home most of what it finds. I’m not confident that they don’t eat some of it but they do keep the good stuff in their cheeks. I have learned that going around and trying to tell everyone the good news that swells in my heart isn’t always the right thing to do. Most people don’t hold themselves to any standards… let alone a higher standard. But, I do! And, so do you or you would have stopped reading by now.

Sometimes (more often than not) I’m better off bringing the good stuff home and sharing with people who are hungry for it. I’m better off keeping my mouth shut and bringing the bounty back to the nest. I’d rather share with people who hold themselves to a higher standard.

That doesn’t mean you have it all. You may not have the fancy cars or the big homes or the schnazzy corporate title (and I’m not against having any of that). You hold yourself to a higher standard because you have a dream and a vision. You are ready to quit playing around with people who have little to no standards and make some serious things happen for yourself with the grace of a Power greater than yourself.

Yeah, I’m talking about you, family!

It’s not that I don’t want to say something when I hear someone complaining about their boss always ragging on them for this, that or the other. And, it’s not that I don’t have a comment when someone tells me over the phone that their boyfriend once again did some crazy mess that they have done  time and time again.

Watch What You Say

My thing is that I know that my words won’t be heard because most people simply want to whine and moan but not put in work. So, I bring it in to the nest and let you reap the lessons of my findings. Maybe you don’t need the stories yourself — at this moment — but you can definitely store them up for the winter. For when you feel like the world is cold and lonely (and we all feel that way sometimes) you have some nuggets of wisdom that I brought home for you to store up. In those moments, pull up these posts and nibble on some good food for thought.

I brought them home especially for those that would appreciate it, family. Because you hold yourself to a higher standard.

Keep some of the good advice — that YOU find — in your cheeks and bring it home to the people who will benefit the most from it.

LEARY OF SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY

Sometimes  I get up from the table, open the back door and watch the little furry angels scampering across the yard. As soon as they hear the door opening they freeze. They stop moving. Focus. And, run in opposite direction at the slightest hint of danger.

That kind of amazes me because I would think that they would take off as soon as they heard the door but they don’t. They stand up on the back feet and stare me down. If I make a sudden move they’re gone. Why would they do that? Why would they stop, look, and listen before making a move?

It’s a habit for them to take defensive action when their work is threatened. But, the habit is to assess the threat before taking action.

Did you get that?

I said they make it a habit to stop, look at the situation, and listen to what’s going on BEFORE taking action.

Too often in my past I would lash out at people for even a perceived threat, let alone an actual threat. Most of the time, I was wrong in my actions but I didn’t want to face the facts. I didn’t want to listen. Because, I thought I knew it all. I wasn’t holding myself to a higher standard and, therefore, I was constantly on the defensive side (because of a lack of faith, a lack of belief in myself, a lack in my thinking).

We don’t know it all, family. Take the time to stop, look and listen to what’s going in your life before you fall into your defensive habits of giving up, of going for a drink, of smoking a blunt, of starting an argument with your loved one, of walking out in the middle of an agreement. I’ve done all of them and more. But, the overriding fact is that I was giving up on myself and giving in to whatever sin or vengeful act that I was accustomed to doing…

Instead of taking the time to make a significant change in my attitude and thought process. Instead of holding myself to a higher standard… a standard that was drilled into me as a child. But, that’s just my story. I made a change. You can, too.

You can’t cross burned bridges but you can forge new paths in your new life. That’s your focus, family… building a new life where you are committed to fortune and dedicated to service.Chipmunk Eating Peanut

If you have made it a natural part of your routine to gather nuggets of wisdom, keep the good stuff in your mouth and bring them home to the nest, you will find it easier and easier to make smarter decisions when faced with a threat to your peace. That, family, is living at a higher standard. Take the time to assess your threat — perceived or otherwise — and take the best course of action.

D Arlando Fortune
Keep it as simple as A, B, C’s; 1, 2, 3’s; and, do, re, mi’s

PS. I had to make one more statement here about one of my favorite cartoons. I mean, I couldn’t talk about chipmunks without revisiting Alvin, right?

Did you ever notice how Alvin and his brothers worked hard every day making music, listened to their father advice, and always worked as a team. That’s the type of community that we promote hear. Don’t worry I’m not calling my self the father of advice. I’m suggesting that there is a power greater than us that moves mountiains for us to prosper in ALL that we do. And, I for one have had some mountains moved. I’d like to tell you about them and how you can have yours moved, too. No religious talk… just work!!

PSS. Subscribe to this site and stay plugged in. It’ll only cost you your name and email address so do that NOW!

Words of Inspiration (The Neighborhood Fireworks Story)

Linda Proctor. We are both receiving every good that comes into our life from the same source. There is only one source of supply. That is Spirit… everything comes from Spirit.

How to Get Inspired: 3 Steps to Take Towards Divine ‘Words of Inspiration’

Write Useful Stuff cartoonI came into my office this evening to begin writing. I wasn’t sure exactly what I was going to write about but I knew that it was going to be powerful.

Now, that probably sounds arrogant.

And, it is.

But, you may not understand the position of power that I am writing from.

I came into the bathroom (the ‘second office’) to write without a definitive topic in mind because I had faith that something important was going to come through me and onto the page that you are reading. It’s very simple to me. I go through a process that we discussed a few days ago: I asked for divine words of inspiration.

I have the three steps that I use below so be prepared to take some notes on those steps.

Back to my story though…

I was sitting in here reading over an email from a very inspirational writer when I heard these explosions going off outside.

boom, pop, pop, pop

I didn’t pay it too much attention and continued reading. The email went on talking about how we are all celebrities in our own right…

boom, pop, pop, pop

I keep on reading but there’s a curiosity beginning to swirl around in my head as to exactly what was carrying on outside.

It’s in those nudges from childhood that our celebrity exists,” says the writer…

boom, pop, pop, pop
The curiosity got to me, family. So, I went outside to check things out. I live in a good neighborhood so I wasn’t sure what kind of racket was going on at almost 10 o’clock at night. I open the back door and peer out over the backyard and into the yards of my neighbors.

Nothing happening.

I shut the door and begin walking towards the front thinking to myself: Maybe I was hearing it wrong.

I open the front and look out over the tops of the houses in my neighborhood.

Still… nothing happening. Disheartened, I return to my second office and sit down to finish reading my email and to write today’s post.On Knees in Prayer

Once I completed the email, I pushed my laptop away from, bowed my head, and said a short prayer.

As promised, here are the three steps that I took…

KNOW WHAT YOU WANT

When I bowed my head down to ask for divine words of inspiration I had no clue of the specifics of today’s topic. What I had was a general idea.

The general idea doesn’t change too much for me. I wanted to deliver an inspirational story. I wanted to affect some level of change in the lives of all those who my words touch. (That’s why I ask you to post your comments and to share these posts with your friends and family.) Don’t be selfish with the blessings that pass through me. Think about what would happen if I was selfish… if I didn’t put words to paper when I was inspired. Ya see, I knew as a child that I was destined for greatness.

My parents had a lot to do with nurturing that flame but I didn’t take heed to their lessons for a good ten years of my life. I had some moments of clarity when I did write but often I was lost and claimed to be on my own path.

I was though. Don’t let anyone tell you that your path is not the path you are supposed to be on. But I warn you to take heed of the warning signs when you’ve gone too far.

Those detour signs are there for a reason!

Step one is decide what kind divine words of inspiration you need.

Then…

ASK FOR WHAT YOU WANT

This may be the difficult part for many of you. I know you’ve been told to go get what you want. You’re probably saying to me right now “I’m a grown man or I’m a grown woman and I don’t need help from nobody or nothing.”

You’re right.

And, you’re wrong.

(This is just the way I see things. Take from it what you will and leave the rest.)

You’re right in that you DO have to go get it yourself. However, I’m asking you to take a moment… right before you go out to go get it…

I’m asking you to humble yourself enough to ask for inspiration

…to ask for the things you want to manifest in your life (today, short term, and long term)

…to ask to be able to recognize the opportunities your looking for when they present themselves

…to ask for the strength to bite into the negative energy that is thrown at you, swallow it down, and turn it into fuel

If you take the time to do this step towards divine words of inspiration, then you put yourself in a position for acceptance.

ACCEPT DIVINE WORDS OF INSPIRATION

Family, we know what we want. We asked for it. And, now we have to accept the hints and clues that we see.

This step takes some faith. It takes some trust in your gut feeling. I realize that that may be strange for all of you reading this that are acting on pure willpower every day. This concept of divine words of inspiration may be completely foreign to you.

I’m telling you there are going to be times in your life that you need that little extra from somewhere! You’re going to be sitting there trying to decide what your next move is… You’re looking for direction on the internet. You ask your trusted friends or family for advice. You sit down to write out a plan and you still don’t know what to do and then…

boom, pop, pop, pop

You get distracted for a moment and it sparks your curiosity. But, no, you can’t get sidetracked. You gotta figure out what your next step is.

boom, pop, pop, pop

You can’t take the curiosity anymore. You go check out what’s in your past for some answers. But, nothing’s happening.

You look at what’s in front of you but you don’t see the answer.

It’s in that moment, especially, that I want you to go sit down, bow your head, and ask for divine words of inspiration.

boom, pop, pop, pop

Just like the fireworks that were being shot off into the night in my neighborhood today. You put a little flame on the end of the rocket, step back, and let it go. When your rocket gets to the end of its fuel…

boom, pop, pop, pop

Fireworks Explosion

It explodes! It releases its beauty, wonder, amazement, and joy. It showers you with divine words of inspiration, family. Then you…

GET TO WORK!!

D Arlando Fortune
Keep it as simple as A, B, C’s; 1, 2, 3’s; and, do, re, mi’s

PS. Those are the three steps that elevate me to a position of power, family. Use these 3 steps to divine words of inspiration daily. A final note, say ‘thank you’. You don’t have to say it to some religious entity. It’s my belief that acknowledging a power greater than you is plenty. So, say ‘thank you’!

PSS. Take the time to read through some of the other posts here on this site. As you come across some that you feel need to be shared then do it! And, be sure to sign up to the email list so that you are the first in line to receive updates.

Sit Down For A Minute (Not Going to Jail Again)

Jim Rohn. “It all starts by making one little change and adding to it every day. You can’t start changing what’s going on around you without first changing what’s going on within you.”

Every time that I went to jail and told to sit down for a minute, I had a spiritual moment each time I decided that I didn’t want to go to jail again. I would drop to my knees asking for forgiveness for what I had done. Mind you, I wasn’t asking to be saved from some certain circumstance. In fact, there was a discussion I had at one point during a ‘session’ over whether or not a person could be free while locked up.

I was of the opinion that a person was definitely more free within a jail cell than he or she was outside for the simple fact that the person no longer had any responsibilities.

While locked up: food was prepared and brought; a place to sleep was provided; TV was available; a library for further education was available; and, there was plenty of time to meditate on life.

I began citing different people who, when told they had to sit down for a minute,  had found peace of mind through the isolation that being locked in jail had brought them.

No, the person locked up did not have the freedom to physically get up and go whenever he pleased. My point was that the person had the opportunity to find, in forced isolation, a spiritual freedom almost like none other opportunity.

He could sit down for a minute and contemplate on the pieces of his life that needed correction. He could rid his mind of the belief that he needed complete control in order to be free. He could accept that there was much more to life than the activities that landed him there in the first place. And, he could find safety in a power greater than himself which is where I began today’s discussion.

Now, how often do you think that plan works out?

The bad news

Don’t get me wrong, family…

I do NOT wish incarceration upon anyone that is not deserving. But there comes a time when we all need to “sit down for a minute” (because I’m not going to jail again) and figure things out.

The sad part is that most incarcerated individuals re-enter society with a clearer perspective — but that perspective is on how to become a better criminal. Most do not come out with the intent to go back to doing the same old activities. Things happen that lead them back to a point where a crucial decision must be made.

It’s at this crucial moment that individual decides whether the life he dreamed of when he had to sit down was important enough for him to accept it as a true possibility. I’m telling you from experience that if the individual has not made a decision to stand up and step out into a better life then he will be told to ‘come on back and sit down’… again.

Life doesn’t discriminate in this learning thing. In the words of my Southern roots, “It’ll learn ya.”

What do I mean by that?

You already know the answer but I’ll spell it out: You will continue to be tempted by the same things in your life until you learn how to deal with them in a productive and progressive way. That’s why I was supposed to ‘sit down for a minute’ so that I could learn from my adversary, build a new belief for myself, and create a new plan of action.

So, I ask you, family…

What adversary do you keep facing?

You are going to have to identify what is holding you back from your greatness. I’m not asking you to dwell in your past. I’m telling you to identify the temptation that is going to confront you again when you have stepped out of your temporary imprisonment.

Wait a minute…

You’re trying to tell me that I’m in prison. But I haven’t committed any crime. Well, you tell me…

Is it a crime to continue mentally beating yourself up for things in your past that you cannot change — that’s battery.

Is it a crime to kill your dreams simply because you don’t understand how you’re going to become THAT person — that’s murder.

Is it a crime to step on and pull other people away from their dreams when they are following the path they believe has been laid down for them — that’s theft.

Is it a crime to allow your boss to pimp you out for your talents and keep the money because he knows what best for you — that’s prostitution.

Is it a crime to tell yourself that “I’m too dumb”, “I’m too fat”, or “you can do that, but I will never be able to do (fill in the blank)” — family, that’s libel and slander!

I know I went on a bit of a tangent but understand that your biggest adversary is your own thoughts. Realize that you have asked your true self — your spirit — to sit down for a minute because you were not mentally ready to take on your life (you hadn’t made the decision that you were not going to jail again).

That pain your feeling is your spirit. It’s in pain because it’s been trying to tell you that there’s a better way.

Identify the thoughts that keep leading you back to the same situations, the same conditions, the same people, the same results, the same life…

Then, answer this question…

What belief do you need to build and program into your mind?

Maybe you don’t know what belief you need to build and that’s okay. All that means is that it’s time for you to begin studying. If you want some change in your life… if you truly want that change then you gotta go find the answers.

The answers don’t come to the people who sit around and wish. A great man said “seek and ye shall find”. That word seek is a verb. You have to actively seek out the beliefs that you need. You have to actively seek out the steps that you need to take in order to make it to the next level. You gotta MAKE it happen for yourself.

Here’s an important note: the very fact that you have read this far into this post says that you are seeking. You have begun making that ‘one little change’ as the opening quote says.

It is then, and only then, that providence will step in to show you that you’re on the right path.

Finally, ask yourself…

What action do I need to take to create this new path in my life?

Let me clear something up here.

The last question required you to actively step out and ‘seek’ your answers.

In this step, you are going to create a new path for your life.

You figured out your adversary.

You figure out what new belief that you needed to overcome your adversary.

Now, you take action so that you can create a new life for you in spite of your adversary. Take these steps and watch how better prepared you are to meet that adversary head on when it comes up.

Ya see, family, when I was put in jail the first few times I didn’t use my time wisely. Oh, I sat down and thought about what had got me there. And, I thought about what I wanted to be, to do and where I wanted to go when I go out. But, I didn’t make a plan on how to confront and overcome my adversary when I ran into it again.

I thought that I would be able to avoid life’s lessons. That’s not how this thing works. You are going to have to face these adversaries over and over and over and over until you defeat them or give in to them.

I’m not giving in to ANYTHING that’s trying to hold me down! And, with the God, that I know, I will be set free! I don’t want to be told to ‘sit down for a minute‘ again.

Where you at, family? Answer those questions.

D Arlando Fortune
Keep it as simple as A, B, C’s; 1, 2, 3’s; and, do, re, mi’s

PS. If this message has inspired you to take some new action in your life that I’m grateful that my words have hit there mark. Don’t keep it to yourself, though. Share this post with your friends and family that are going through some things.

PSS. If you are looking for a speaker for any occasion than respond to this post and leave a comment below.

For Storytellers The Right Story Makes ALL The Difference (Unless You’re Wrong)

I subscribed to this man’s YouTube channel today. Apparently, I’m a little behind on ET The HipHop Preacher’s page. I didn’t know how much work he has been putting in to getting his message around the world, to becoming an INTERNATIONAL speaker. But that’s what the right story will do for you family.

Just think…

The right story will elevate you whether you want to be elevated or not. The story that ET used on YouTube that brought a lot of attention to who he is was a retelling, in his own words, about Socrates and his student:

There’s a story about a proud young man who came to Socrates asking for knowledge. He walked up to the muscular philosopher and said, “O great Socrates, I come to you for knowledge. Socrates recognized a pompous numbskull when he saw one. He led the young man through the streets, to the sea, and chest deep into water. Then he asked, “What do you want?”

“Knowledge, O wise Socrates,” said the young man with a smile.

Socrates put his strong hands on the man’s shoulders and pushed him under. Thirty seconds later Socrates let him up. “What do you want”? he asked again.

“Wisdom,” the young man sputtered, “O great and wise Socrates.”

Socrates crunched him under again. Thirty seconds passed, thirty-five. Forty. Socrates let him up. The man was gasping. “What do you want, young man”?

Between heavy, heaving breaths the fellow wheezed, “Knowledge, O wise and wonderfu…” Socrates jammed him under again.

Forty seconds passed…

Fifty…

“What do you want?”

“Air,” he screeched. “I need air!”

“When you want knowledge as you have just wanted air, then you will have knowledge.?

M. Littleton in Moody Monthly, June, 1989, p. 29

The retelling of this story was the right story for the group of athletes that ET was giving the speech to. And because of YouTube, that video — delivered by a great storyteller — went viral. Oh, what the right story will do for you!

Question: What stories are you choosing to accept into your life? What stories are you creating in your life?

I was on a conference call earlier today listening to a phenomenal woman tell the story of how she has made a habit of stepping up to every challenge that life presents to her. (More on her in a later post. I want to get her story right and present it properly to you!)

Last night I listened to a young man recount how the internet has changed his life because he finally listened to and understood the story “Three Feet from Gold”.

This is what I do EVERY DAY!

I’m working hard. I’m working so that I can listen to, learn from, and apply as many life lessons as it will take for me to become the best storyteller that I can become. I’m building a mental database. So that I can pull the right story, at the right time on any occasion. Without sounding like Grandpa…”in 1952, right before me and your grandma started having kids…”

Grandpa Stories

Because I know how YOUR story affects my life. I want to put the same inspiration into the people that I meet, the people that read this blog, and the people that watch my videos. I crave to be more so that I can do more. That’s what the right story does for you… it builds value!

I have found that strength all around me… in my bookcases, stacked on the floor, and on my nightstand.

Now, this is just my opinion but if you take the Bible at its core you will see that it is a collection of stories.

Stories written about what people have seen.

Stories written about what people have done.

Stories written about what people thought and felt.

We can use this book (The Book) to learn that what we are going through is not new. The biblical characters say this is what happened to me and this is what happened to me afterward because of the inspiration I received from here and the actions I took after being inspired. They have left a living testament to the fact that what they went through in their lives then, at its core is similar to what we may be going through now.

They say here is my story presented to you in this book (The Book). In it, is the history of man — as they knew it.

The thing that makes it a religious book is that history became HIS-story. And, guess what…

We are living the same story — HIS-story — but in a different time. Which makes my story and your story the RIGHT STORY.

I say all of this to bring home the point that, no matter what you think about the Bible, simply reading anyone’s biography will teach you about yourself and what possibilities surround you when you have opened your eyes to them.

I mean almost every story you read, family, could and can be the right story.

Both the good stories and the bad stories are needed, family.

But take this with you: your story can be either a testimony or a warning. I suggest you make your life into a testimony of success, wealth, health, and happiness.

Make your the right story.

Enjoy your weekend. Much love, family…

D Arlando Fortune

Keep it as simple as A, B, C’s; 1, 2, 3’s; and, do, re, mi’s

PS. Have a safe and happy weekend, family. As you spend time with you friends and family, I urge you to take some time and listen to good news. Remember, the right story will change your life!!

PSS. To continue getting updates to these posts take the time now to give us your name and email. Stay tuned for a new video next week.

Faith Is Just That Simple (The Phone Call)

I cannot make people change, anymore than people can make me change. I must, therefore, accept you for where you are in your life as I want you to accept me in mine. I can offer advice, guidance, consultation but in the end it is up to you to change you — it is up to me to change me through my beliefs and my faith.

faith is just that simple, family

we teach people how to treat us

Phone ReceiverI had settled down to prepare to write for the evening when I received a call from a lady friend. she and I had been in an intimate relationship, off and on, for years. at this particular moment the relationship was in the off side of the chart (number 4, I believe). anyway, we were having a great conversation! I’m happy that we are able to have conversations like this — that do not end up in a verbal fight.

during our conversation, my father interrupts to ask me a question regarding one of our properties in Texas. I look up so that my eyes can meet his and show him the respect he has earned but I guess something in my tone or demeanor upset him. he immediately asked who I was on the phone with.

after my response he turned on his heels, corners of his mouth drawn down, and walked away stiff-necked and visibly upset.

I later asked him the reason for his apparent disappointment with me.  to which he responded, “whenever you get on the phone or you’re around that girl you act as if you need to poke your chest out when I talk to you!”

I didn’t know what he has talking about in this instance. but I think I was made aware of his meaning today. the possibility of people changing their states almost instantaneously during interactions with certain individuals is what I think he was describing.

the conversation that I had with a good friend, Jen (now married… sorry I don’t have your name for this), opened my eyes to this level of consciousness within my own spirit.

this was only one such eye opener I experienced as we conversed today.

she reminded me to take these steps when I recognize myself in that state — in that space of fear or misunderstanding. she said “that she drops her head and asks God to ‘Come and take this away from me, please?'”

faith is just that simple!

you’re open to everything when you’re feeling good

I related to her how I know that I am destined to speak in front of thousands of people (at a time) and show them how to change their lives. I know that this is God’s plan for me. she reminded me, in her own words, of something that you hear me say often: God uses lives of victory.

but she cautioned me to be careful on my stage and in my journey. she reminded me that the enemy (in whatever form it chooses to take) will find a way to tempt me in all things.

she offered some more steps that she takes during these moments.

she said for me ask myself “is this serving me or is it serving God?” that I should, in all things, be conscious of my choices and be ever-aware of “the enemy that’s playing in your playground”. she made the last comment in response to my telling her that I love the good feeling that I get when I’m in front of people speaking.

after hearing her response, I reflected on the moments that I have had that ‘good’ feeling. what I discovered in my self-reflection was that although I consistently had a good feeling when I spoke in front of people, there was a distinct difference in the feeling itself… depending on the moment.

what?!

feeling good is feeling good, right?

Feeling Good

well, here’s how I can explain the difference. after some occasions I would feel this great energy welling within me and I could feel strength surging through my muscles and fibers. after other occasions I would feel this tremendous source of power that was flowing through me. it felt separate from me yet it wasn’t. it was a feeling of profound peace. family, there is strength in peace and understanding like none other… call it faith.

on the one hand, I felt as if I could take on the world. while the other hand, experiences felt as if the world was already mine.

I could remember most of what I said during the physical and emotional moments of strength. I couldn’t remember a damn thing I said during the SPIRITUAL moments of strength. (yeah, I used profanity and spirituality in the same sentence. so what?)

I’m not sure that one is better than the other. I believe that both are needed. however, the one determining factor between the two was whether I asked God for the words to say.

faith is just that simple.

I plan to do both from here on out. I will work myself into a powerful physical and emotional state AND I will ask my spirit for the right words. that will be a message on steroids!

I think that also means that I should do the same for my writing. the state I look for when I write is quiet and focused. I may start with a plan but then the breath of life I strive to put into my words begins to flow. if I let it do it’s thing, the spirit of my life, as I know it, comes to life on the page. YESSIR!!

faith is just that simple.

faith can be a simple thing to get

I asked her: what was it that made you make that shift in your thinking?

she said: My son

faith is just that simple

“fear is not faith,” she said. “faith means that I no longer have to worry.”

family, I know that to be a fact! looking into my past I have enough evidence that I was saved by grace.

“I’m a single mother with a child,” she said. “there were times that I didn’t know where I was going to go. but He made a way.

“when I was trying to take everything into my own hands I only got so far before I started messing things up. I had to learn to let God take care of things. when I am doing things that are in line with what He has planned for me then things will work out”

faith is just that simple

family, understand that my plans are to serve God, as I understand Him. I may not like the immediate results that He gives me but…

Simple Faith

I love the plan

I love the journey

I love the acceptance

I love the happiness

I love the joy

in a nutshell, I love the life that He has opened up to me. whether or not I or anyone else likes the bad and the ugly of it,  I have faith in the good and the beauty of my life. that is what is promised me. it has been that way for generations and it will continue to be so.

why do I have to have the both sides? you ask. I don’t know. like Jim Rohn said, “I’m asking you not to sign up for that class. Don’t sign up for these, ‘Why is this?’ classes. It’s just the way it is–like winter following fall and spring following winter.

faith is just that simple

 

faith IS just that simple

 

when you’re thirsty and you want a drink of water? I hope that you find water to quench your thirst.

when you’re hungry and you want a bite to eat? I hope that you find food to satisfy your hunger.

when you’re ignorant and you want to understanding? I hope that you find the words to empower you mind.

both thirst and hunger are signs that you are liking some form of nourishment. a lack of water manifest itself as a feeling that we have labeled thirst. a lack food manifests itself as a feeling that we have labeled hunger. we have been both been thirsty and hungry, family. the books I read and the people I associate with fulfill my need for understanding.

but, I also know that I have had moments when I was thirsty and water didn’t help. there have been times when I was hungry and food didn’t work. and, there have been times when reading a book or seeking counsel didn’t fulfill my needs either.

it was during those times that I operated on faith. remember that ‘fear is not faith’ so I sit back in faith to allow God, as I understand Him, to take the lead. it is in these moments when my spirit it lacking that I find my faith filling me back up.

family, faith is just that simple.

D Arlando Fortune

Keep it as simple as A, B, C’s; 1, 2, 3’s; and, do, re, mi’s

PS. I really got into that one didn’t I? I hope that you have found a lesson for yourself through my recounting of the phone call. Jen has a great story. I would rather her tell you herself than I tell it. maybe you got something more from this story. if you did, then leave your comments below.

PSS. if you are looking for a way to use storytelling to market your product or service fill in your name and address here.

Have More Spirituality (in 12 Steps)?

Dr Robert Schuller. “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?”

Wow… Just thinking about the power of that simple question gives me goosebumps! What could you do? What is your true potential? A lot of us have gone through things that we definitely do not care to remember. A lot of us have done things that we will not repeat to others. A lot of us want to know that others have gone through similar things and have come out much better having gone through them. It is my hope that the 12 steps presented here along with some of my musings on some pretty important people in my life will help you along your path to having more spirituality. First, I would like for you to think about this quote from the movie “Silver Linings Playbook”.

“It hurts to look at the clouds, but it also helps, like most things that cause pain.”
Matthew Quick, The Silver Linings Playbook
We can get stuck thinking about what could’ve been and about what should’ve been. And, in doing so, we end up just like that… stuck! I know that there is a silver linings, family. I live it every day.
Dr. Robert Schuller believed this also. He went so far as to have a show called “The Hour of Power” just to prove that there is a silver lining. During these show, Dr. Schuller would interview people from all across the world. These were ordinary people who had accomplished extraordinary things. He wouldn’t just focus on their extraordinary accomplishments, though. He was much smarter than that.
He had his guests tell the WHOLE story. He asked his guests the tough questions about their struggles, their hardships, and the hurdles they overcame in order to stand victorious. (Remember: God uses lives of victory.)
His strategy was simple: show people the bad and the good.
It’s in the story that people learn about themselves. And, so it is when we hear people’s struggles and eventual success in spite of the struggle that we imprint life lessons into our own minds.

Some Storytelling Humor

Zen Master with a Hot DogZen Master Has A Hotdog

So the Zen master steps up to the hot dog cart and says: “Make me one with everything.”

The hot dog vendor fixes a hot dog and hands it to the Zen master, who pays with a $20 bill.

The hot dog vendor puts the bill in the cash drawer and closes the drawer.

“Where’s my change?” asks the Zen master.

The hot dog vendor responds: “Change must come from within.”

12 Steps…

Dr. Schuller was a master storyteller. I have to believe that all the storytelling helped to shape the lives and attitudes of his own children.
That is the reason that I have included the following 12 steps in this post. I am not talking about the traditional 12 steps of AA or NA. I am referring to spiritual growth and about how to have more spirituality in your life.
Have a look…

12 Steps for Spiritual Growth:

 1.  I will admit that I am powerless over my hang-up and that my life is unmanageable.

 2.  I will acknowledge that God is greater than I and that he can bring restoration to my life.

 3.  I will turn my life over to God.

 4.  I will make a searching and fearless moral inventory of myself.

 5.  I will admit to God, myself, and another human being the exact nature of my wrongs.

 6.  I will make myself entirely ready to have God remove any defects from my character and bring about the necessary changes in my  life.

 7.  I will humbly ask God to remove my shortcomings.

 8.  I will make a list of the people I have harmed by my past behavior and become willing to make amends.

 9.  Wherever it is possible, I will make direct amends to the people my behavior has harmed.

10.  I will continue to take personal inventory o my life on a regular basis and promptly admit when I do something wrong or lapse back into old behavior patterns.

11.  I will seek to know more of God.

12.  I will seek to carry to others the glorious message of teh possibility of a spiritual awakening.

(pulled from “12 Steps for Life-Changing Power: Dump Your Hang-Ups Without Dumping Them On Others” by Robert A Schuller)

These 12 steps were created by Dr. Schuller’s son. He continues to build people’s lives in his own way.

I have been to a good amount of 12 step meetings. Aside from 12 step plan that these meetings offer, I am continually inspired by the stories that I hear from people who have surmounted seemingly overwhelming odds just so they could tell their story and save someone’s life and in the process manifest more spirituality.

That’s the message behind this post…

Be Empowering!!

Keep looking for the stories that will help you reach your destination.

Answer the question, “What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?”

Once you have answered that question for yourself, go find people that have gone through similar situations and read their stories, listen to their struggles, and absorb the attitudes that encouraged them to succeed.

Next, create your own story by taking massive action towards achieving it.

Finally, show your appreciation for having accomplished your goals by telling other people in a similar struggle.

D Arlando Fortune

Keep it as simple as A, B, C’s; 1, 2, 3’s; and, do, re, mi’s

PS. Take action on “Be Empowered” section ASAP! Better yet take MASSIVE action immediately toward the life that you want for you and your family. Take these 12 steps with you on your journey towards more spirituality. And, refer to them when you have doubts creeping up from your spirit.

PSS. I am committed to continue bringing useful content. Don’t wait to hear the good news. Follow me and spread the word, family!