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The Squeaky Wheel Doesn't Get the Grease....

THE SQUEAKY WHEEL DOESN'T GET THE GREASE.....

I love Isaiah Hankel's article in Entrepreneur magazine as he states, your problems are proportional to the amount of time you spend complaining about your problems:  The less you complain, the fewer problems you will have. This is because complaining about your problems keeps your attention on your problems. And attention generates force.   Paul mentions this in Philippians 2:14 where he says "Do everything without complaining or arguing."

Complaining negatively affects your brain functioning and overall health. A study in the journal Developmental Psychology reported by the American Psychological Association found that people who vent to one other about their problems for long periods of time are more likely to develop depression and anxiety.  Other studies reported by Stanford University News have shown that exposure to complaints lasting 30 minutes or more peels away neurons in your hippocampus, the part of your brain responsible for problem-solving.

 

COMPLAINING LOWERS SELF-ESTEEM.


The squeaky wheel doesn't get the grease. The squeaky wheel breaks down and gets replaced. 
If you want to attract failure, talk about your problems. If you want to attract success, talk about what makes you happy. A study published in the journal Psychological Science and reported in Science Daily examined how people responded to positive versus negative social media-status updates. The researchers ranked random survey subjects as having high or low self-esteem and collected a set of 10 status updates from each person. The researchers then asked strangers to read the updates and rate how much they liked the person who wrote each set.

An example of a positive status update was, “[I am] looking forward to a great day tomorrow.” An example of a negative update was, “[I am] upset b/c my phone got stolen.”
The study found that people with high self-esteem were more likely to post positive status updates than those with low self-esteem. The study also found that strangers liked people who posted positive status updates more than people posting negative ones.

People with low self-esteem complain, which makes them less desirable to others and lowers their self-esteem further. It's a vicious cycle. The way to stay out of this cycle is to actively build up your self-esteem by practicing habits that prevents complaining. 

 

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RIDING FOR THE BRAND

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RIDING FOR THE BRAND

 In It To Win It..... 

A couple of years ago I joined a friend who own several horses for a morning ride near the lake where he lived.  

As his horse galloped along the river bank, he rode like a gunslinger from Gunsmoke.  he was low and in sync with his horse.  It was a thing of beauty.

On the other hand, my ride was ugly as I bounced up and down.  It was painful and I could remember the epxerience weeks later as bruises on the inside of my thighs healed.  I had a tough time getting in sync with my horse.

Later, I asked my friend, how did he do it and more importantly how could I ride like a pro?  He looked at me with a smile on his face, "It's easy, but it requires training not trying and discipline not just desire."

It stunned me as I thought how many times in life have we tried what required training and desired what required discipline.  Trying is when it is convenient for you, but when you are in training you do it whether you want to or not.  That's discipline.

The Apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians, don't be content to just compete, but compete to win.

What is it that you desired at the beginning of the year, but have given up becasue you only tried?  Training may not be convienent or comfortable but it is necessary to win.

Ride for the brand.

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It's not OK.

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It's not OK.

A couple of friends were waiting for me at a restaurant.

I was running late because when I am working or studying it seems to take longer than expected.

I rushed through the door, a little winded expressing my apologies.

They smiled and said.  "It's OK!  Don't worry about it."

I appreciated their graciousness, but I shook my head.

Sometimes, it can be incredibly powerful to admit to yourself & others,

"Actually... it's not OK."

Like many led people, I have a tendency to go "above and beyond" when it comes to work - rising early in the morning going deeper and deeper barely surfacing to breathe.

There's nothing wrong with this tendency of devotion.  It's one of the things I like best about myself.

But what's wrong is when it is out of balance.

Even if it is OK with them, it's not OK with me.

But I'd never make a firm commitment to do better, without first beginning with the uncomfortable words:

It's not OK. 

It's not OK that I'm (almost) always a few minutes tardy when I'm meeting.

It's not OK to be a few minutes late for church.

It's not OK to be a couple of minutes late picking up the kids.

It's a small thing and yet it's a big thing.

Punctuality and honesty =  growth.

And that's definitely OK.

Let me ask a rhetorical question.  

"What's not OK with you?"

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GG’S GIVEAWAY!

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GG’S GIVEAWAY!

Pastor Gwen has her eyes wide open as she looks for potential prize winners. Keep watching our Facebook, Twitter and Website to participate.  You may just have us pay you a visit at your workplace or home. We are on the prowl, with exciting prizes….

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DO YOU REALLY KNOW HOW YOU LOOK?

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DO YOU REALLY KNOW HOW YOU LOOK?

When you got up this morning you presented yourself to that mirror before you presented yourself on your job.  However, none of us have truly seen ourselves.  The reason that you think you look the way you do is because you have trusted a natural mirror.  But you haven’t really seen yourself.  You have only seen a reflection of who you are.

Isn’t it funny every single day we trust a natural mirror to tell us what we look like naturally.  But when it comes to God’s mirror (the Bible) we have such a tough time trusting a spiritual mirror and what it says on the inside which is a picture of your true self.

Many times we have a tough time trusting what the Bible says because it is easy to trust a natural mirror.  However, would any of you ladies get up in the morning and say, my hair isn’t that messed up.  I don’t need to look into the mirror this morning?

Your spirit is always trying to follow God and convince you that you love Him.  Your spirit wants to know Him and experience more of Him.  So this mirror (the Bible) is just confirming what your spirit is telling you on the inside.  You are a slave of righteousness (Romans 6:1-7).

Put as much energy into your spiritual mirror as you put into your natural mirror.  Then you will discover what you really look like.

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When Life Doesn’t Turn Out The Way You Planned

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When Life Doesn’t Turn Out The Way You Planned

When Daniel was a little boy, a foreign king invaded his homeland and took him to Babylon.  He lived in a place he never thought he would be.  So the questions is:  What do you do when you end up in Babylon?  Babylon is where you find yourself when life doesn't turn out the way you planned.  It may be a relationship did not turn out the way you planned or your finances are not what you thought they would be at this point in your life.

We all live in a world that will try to tempt us into settling for less than God's best.  Researchers say that the factor that causes people to give up is not the difficulty they experience in life.  But they usually say, "there's no point in going on...." There is no reason for me to keep living.

When you find yourself in Babylon; make a decision you will honor God.  Future decisions will be based on this one decision.

The Psalmist writes in Psalm 110:3  “Your people shall be willing in the day of your power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: you have the dew of your youth.” .  Morning represents a new day.  The womb represents one who gives birth.  Every day is a new day and an opportunity for God to speak and in your holiness you give birth.

There were those who did not plan to be living in the condition they were, but God spoke into their womb and they gave birth.  When the womb of Sarah spoke the she gave birth to a promise for all generations including us.  When the womb of Hannah spoke, Israel heard the voice of Samuel.  When the womb of Elizabeth spoke, a nation heard the voice of John the Baptist.  When the womb of Mary spoke, the world heard and is still hearing the voice of Jesus Christ.

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WHEN LIFE SEEMS UNEXPLAINABLE

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WHEN LIFE SEEMS UNEXPLAINABLE

WHEN LIFE SEEMS UNEXPLAINABLE

There are so many things in  life that seem unexplainable.  When we look at these unexplainable things in by themselves, they may not make sense.  One of the challenges in life is that we evaluate the end by the beginning.  In other words, we evaluate how something will turn out based on how it is going at the moment.

Your life is not fragmented or separated. You may not initially see it, but events seemingly independent of one another are working together to produce something greater.

Namaan, the leper didn’t understand why Elijah told him to wash in the Jordan seven times in order to be cleansed, but he was cleansed when he obeyed.

The Israelites didn’t understand God’s strategy when He told them to circle Jericho for seven days but victory followed their obedience.

Joseph experienced many moments in his life, but he understood his teenage dream as he stood in the palace 13 years later.

When, what God has said is different from what you are experiencing, connect with Him, trust Him, and follow Him.  He is working things together to produce something greater.

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ATTRACTED TO LOVE

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ATTRACTED TO LOVE

Over 26 years ago, Gwen and I saw each other for the first time after graduating from college.  When we came into the presence of one another.  She looked at me and said “hi”, I looked at her and said “hi”.  Then I asked her to dance.

I remember that moment well.  I was so nervous, because I really couldn’t dance well.  After taking the dance floor, I didn’t move very much.  I didn’t want to mess up.  So the least I moved, the better I looked.  It was important to me that I didn’t mess up, because I wanted her to get a good impression of me.

The reality of a relationship with God can be like that.  You can be kind of nervous, because you don’t want to mess up and that can cause your relationship with Him to be an obligation, but it is suppose to be a living, spirited dance.

One final word, friends. We ask you – urge is more like it – that you keep on doing what we told you to do to please God, not in a dogged religious plod, but in a living, spirited dance. 1 Thessalonians 4:1-2 (Msg)

Your insecurities have less to do with your past experiences and more to do with your current view of God.  When you give other people a level of trust that should only be reserved for God, you set yourself up for disappointment because no man or woman can deliver like God.  If you don’t  trust Him with your life, then insecurity will be a part of your relationship.

God’s love is never passive, but always passionate; and passion always leads to action.

Enjoy the dance,

Ladell Graham

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WHAT’S ON YOUR MIND?

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WHAT’S ON YOUR MIND?

As we prepare to finish up our 21 Days of fasted prayer, I want to pose a question to you: What’s on your mind?

Throughout the Bible God instructs us to change our thinking, to see with spiritual eyes, to remember that His thoughts are not ours. The early church not only had in mind the things of God, but they went about accomplishing God’s work in God’s ways.

The disciples didn’t out-argue unbelievers, they outlived them.
The Christians did not attempt to overthrow those who disagreed with them. Instead, they outthought them; out prayed them and outlived them. Their weapons were positive not negative.

Today, we can get the word out quickly through our social networks when legislation comes up that is not good for the nation morally or spiritually. We speak up and make a difference. Now that is good.

– But does your work for Jesus overtake your worship of Him?
– Are you more inclined to speak out on fb, twitter, blogs, groups than you are to pray?
– Are you more interested in whose in the White House than who is in God’s house?
– Are you more interested in boycotts than you are the salvation of family and friends?

God’s weapons are radically different from the weapons typically used in moral, political and social battles.

Because of the spiritual nature of this struggle, His disciples understood the spiritual nature of the weapon. (2 Corinthians 10:4) “the weapons of our warfare are not of the world. On the contrary they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”

It only takes a moment to recognize how different God’s weapons are from the normal weapons we use in our social battles. As the early disciples focused on God’s weapons, they prevailed.
– Where is Rome today? There is a place called Rome, but it is no longer a world power.
– Where is Caesar today? There is a salad named after him but most of us couldn’t name an emperor of Rome.
– Where are the emperors? GONE
– Where is Christianity? EVERYWHERE

When God looks at you, He sees potential. You may see a blank canvas, but He sees a finished painting. You might see a Simon, but God sees a Peter. You might see a Gideon, but God sees a mighty man and woman.

Something incredible is taking shape. Lives are changing. A new movement is being born. The world is about to be tipped upside down.

The early disciples did it and we can too!

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LIVING A BETTER STORY!

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LIVING A BETTER STORY!

Everybody has a story and the most challenging stories that are ever told are the ones that change you.  At one time in my life, I was the main character of my movie.  It was written by me, it was directed by me and it was staring me.  But in 1995, I met the real Man who began to tell me a different story about my life.  It was a love story but I was not the main character.  At that moment I made a decision to Live A Better Story.

It was that same night that I heard a song that became a “call to action” for me.

Rise up O men of God, Have done with lesser things. Give heart and soul and mind and strength, To serve the King of Kings. Rise up the Lord is calling, Rise up this is the day Rise up and seize the moment, Rise up O men of faith – William P. Merrill

The bible tells us a story of God’s people where only 1 in a million lived a better story.  Two million were caught up in a bad story.  They were in bondage for 400 years.  All two million had the same opportunity to experience God’s power, presence and protection but only 2 out of 2 million did.  It was only Joshua and Caleb who would be the two who would live a better story.

The two enemies of your story are fear and uncertainty.  Fear is being put in a dangerous situation and uncertainty is not being completely sure how you will get out.  Israel crossed the Jordan during harvest season, a body of water that was much higher than it use to be as the rain and snow melted from Mount Hermon.  They didn’t just come up and cross it, but after three days, they had a lot of time to face the two enemies of every story; fear and uncertainty.  God encouraged them to follow the script that He had written (Joshua 3:1-17).

Living a better story doesn’t come naturally.  Although you know your story is important and you don’t want to waste it.  You don’t get to tell it by pretending it’s just about you.   Your story is a story within His story.  Today, you get the opportunity to tell God’s story with your life.  Follow the script!!!

- Ladell Graham

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