Sunday, March 10, 2013

Positive self-talk & 2 sermons that changed my life

Some mornings my thoughts go like this:

Ugh, I don't want to get up.

Thank you, God, that I slept good last night. 

I don't feel good (in response to a blip in health this past week, nothing too bad).

Thank you, God, it's not worse. 

There's too much to do.

Thank you, God, that I'm not bored. 

Brady's calling for me AGAIN.

Thank you, God, for that precious awesome child and that he needs me and loves me and I have this day with him. 

Whew. I have to actively remind myself to quit freaking complaining!!!! I have to over and over, every day, remember to think positive, to see what there is to be grateful for even when life's not perfect.

It can be like that with anything. We can bemoan our life's situations or we can change them. If we can't change them at the moment, then we have to change the way we think about them.

I am telling you as living proof that when you turn negative talk into finding positives, it will transform the way you live. And then it will transform those around you. I have seen it in Brady. Most of the time, as most kids do, he will feel all upset about one situation or another.

But there are times when he just says, "Oh well, at least it's not..." or "Well, at least it IS..." He finds the positive. I always tell him up and down how great I think that is. That one thing can determine whether you have happiness or sadness, and it also affects your health. 

This can pertain to how we see ourselves too:

Ugh, I feel fat. I feel old.

Thank you, God, that I am mostly healthy and that I've made it this far, and please help me to do what I need to to stay healthy. You made me, and because of that, I am beautiful.

I hate my hair. It's too flat. It's too thin. It's too fragile.

Thank you, God, that I don't have a condition that would make me lose my hair. And thank you I haven't found any grays lately! 

I'm not good enough. I don't do enough.

Thank you, God, that I can cook for my family, love them and be there for them. Thank you that I can teach my boy. Thank you that I can fill the role You have set for me in Your kingdom. Help me to see that role every day.

I first encountered this idea when I began going to church by choice, by faith, at 38 years old. Pastor Dan Prine at Edgewater United Methodist Church in Port Charlotte, FL, gave a sermon in which the entire time he was walking down, getting his notes together, putting the podium up, an audio track of his thoughts played overhead. Thoughts about why did he even bother, no one probably listened to him, he didn't reach anybody, he wasn't good enough, he had a hard job, etc. Then he stood at the podium, looked up, smiled and said, "Good morning."

The gathering of hundreds in that old-movie-theater-turned-church had been absolutely silent while the track ran, then totally cracked up when he got up there and said that. We all knew what he was saying. We'd all been there ourselves. You can find that sermon, a really powerful life-changing sermon for me, by going here: and then putting "attitude check" in the archive search and then click on it and click "play."

I have never looked at myself the same way again. Oh, here's another one that changed how I see myself:

Again, go to: and search for "beloved" and then click on it and click "play." This one was just two weeks before I moved myself, my son and my mom from Florida to Kansas. When I got here, amidst stress and guilt and questioning of myself, I listened to it again. It's amazing.

Please, all of you, change how you see yourself. Change how you see your life. You won't believe the difference.

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