Faith in Action

Posted by admin - Under: Belief in action, Christian faith, Faith, Faith in Action, Faith is a verb, Inspiration, Mark Beauvais

When you think of “Faith” what do you think of?

Most of us think of faith as something we believe in. Others as something we have or possess “Wow, she has really strong faith.”

Truth is, faith is not something we have. It is not intellectual belief. In its origin “faith” is a verb, not a noun, which is different than most of us think. The root word for faith is the Hebrew word “aman” (aleph-mem-nun). It is not a possession or even a character trait. It is a verb. It embodies whole-hearted confidence in action. So faith is an action. It is something we do vs. something we have. Or rather, it is confident belief, acted upon.

Examples come to our mind of people who were known for “having faith.” Abraham, the father of Israel, was known for his faith. Abraham was considered faithful for what he did. God asked him to go, and he went. In his case, his faith was shown in his obedience. Smart guy.

If you’re familiar with the bible, Hebrews Chapter 11 contains “The Faith Hall of Fame.” This is unofficial, of course, because the bible doesn’t call it that; it just lists several examples of those who showed inspiring faith. Although most relate “faith” to the spiritual realm, this is not intended as a religious discussion. Faith is not limited to that space. Examples of faith are all around us. When we drive, we have faith that others on the road will stop if the light is red, go when it’s green, stay in their lane, etc. Absent this, it would be chaos. We could cite many examples of things we take for granted each day that require faith to function – medicine, science, banking, government, currency and more.

When it comes to personal faith, most measure this by belief. Do you believe strongly enough in something or in yourself to see it manifest in your life? This concept has been greatly abused in religious, especially Christian circles. Beginning with “Seed Faith,” ghost-written for Oral Roberts, the “prosperity gospel” movement began in 1950’s American evangelical circles. If the right things didn’t happen for you, if you weren’t prosperous or “successful,” it was because you didn’t have enough faith. This is very dangerous and has led to much twisting of the truth. After all, the Pharisees believed such things.

When writing his inspired letter, James, leader of the church in Jerusalem and brother of Jesus, said this:

“Faith by itself, not accompanied by action is dead. I will show you my faith by what I do.” (my emphasis) James 2:17,18

Strong words! I doubt any of us want faith that is dead. Our “faith” is shown not with mere words, but with action. What we believe must show itself in what we do.

In a world where things gradually slip to more depraved standards all around us, I need to be a person of principle and action who stands up for what is right. If I don’t, no one will.

We are always teaching our children, “No matter what others do, as far as it is up to you, YOU need to do what’s right.” If we’re going to teach our children this, we need to do it ourselves. Otherwise, we’re hypocrites! I don’t want to be a hypocrite. Do you?

Make a decision today to show your faith in what you do, not just by what you believe or say. After all, Faith is an action!

[This is Part 1 of a 3-part series. Next, Part 2, Faith as a Gift]

Destiny – Fate or Free Will?

Posted by admin - Under: Destiny, Dina Beauvais, Fate, Free Will, gifts and talents, Inspiration

In a recent movie trailer, a young man pursued a famous self-help author until one day he found him. His question to the writer: “Do I have a destiny, or is it all free will?”

He was looking for answers. We are like the young man, looking to others for direction. We want answers to life’s most profound questions. We look everywhere, except inside ourselves.

The question suggests that “destiny” is something that happens outside our control or involvement. Of course “free will” is choice – our ability to choose. The young man’s question suggests that one excludes the other. In fact, the opposite is true – one includes the other.

The concept of “destiny” outside of ourselves originated in Greek mythology. The Greeks believed a trio of goddesses visited an infant 3 nights after birth and determined the child’s destiny. This became that individual’s pre-destined fate, and neither they nor anyone else could change it. Further, the goddesses were cold and indifferent, rendering terrible outcomes for many without remorse.

Few would accept such a far-fetched notion about one’s destiny today. However, what remains in our culture is the idea that our fate is somehow pre-determined by outside forces – GOD or otherwise.

Each of us is a miraculous creation, endowed with unique gifts and talents. We are all capable of greatness. Not a greatness to serve ourselves, but greatness that benefits our fellow man and the common good. Discovering and fully utilizing these gifts and talents is our quest.

To become all we are capable of is our ultimate destiny.

We have the power of free will. This power was given to us by the Infinite One – Almighty GOD (The Higher Power, Infinite Intelligence, The Great Spirit,if you like). He has created almost infinite possibilities for our lives.The question we should be asking is: “What choices should I make to direct my destiny, fully using the gifts and talents I possess?”

The power to choose gives us the ability to direct our lives. We can choose one of many courses. Our choices can lead to either positive or self-destructive outcomes. The direction we choose can lead to great contribution, fulfillment and abundance or poverty, crime and punishment.

The truth is, it’s not destiny versus free will, one or the other – it’s both. Our “destiny” is determined by the choices we make in our lives. We become what we choose.

With this power comes great responsibility. We are accountable for the choices we make and their resulting outcomes. Our choices direct the outcomes of our lives. The sum of those outcomes shapes our destiny.

The answer to the young man’s question is simple – your choices direct your destiny. It doesn’t randomly happen to us. YOU have the power over your choices. Therefore, you have everything to do with guiding the course of your destiny.

In another popular recent movie, a wise father speaking to his young son at a defining moment says: “You are fully capable of deciding your own destiny. The question you face is which path will you choose? This is something only you can decide.”

We must look inside ourselves for answers. Who are we passionate to become? The Infinite One has given us the power to choose. The answers do not lie outside of us, out of our control. Fate is not pre-determined. It is not up to others. Our choice, and the actions behind those choices, determine the course of our destiny.

Which path will you choose? What choices will you make? You have the power to decide.

Carpe Diem – Seize the Day!

Posted by admin - Under: Carpe Diem, Edward Marks, gratitude, Inspiration

Every day is a blessing. You are fortunate to have each one. We get a fresh start with the morning sun rise.

How do you start your morning – with excitement and expectancy or with drudgery? Choose to rejoice and be grateful for all you’ve been given – even the challenges! Ask yourself what God is teaching you in the difficult times.

Our troubles are opportunities to persevere and grow in character. These life obstacles serve to make you stronger. So don’t complain about them, relish them! Approach them with zeal and excitement. Once you have overcome them, you will look back upon them with laughter, wiser from what you learned through the experience. Seize the day!

Change Your World

We have opportunities each day to make a difference in the world around us. Choose to be the change you want to see in the world.

Your world is the hemisphere you work, act and play in each day. This is your sphere of influence and life operating circle.

How do you interact with the people you come in contact with in your world? Are you joyful?… pleasant?… or are you self-absorbed? Do you improve the environment around you?… or make people wish they’d never see you again?

Ask yourself, “Do I measure up to the standard I expect in others?” If not, decide to change today! Stop acting in ways you wouldn’t tolerate in others.

Be the difference you want to see in the world. Seize the day!

Seize Opportunities

Look for opportunities around you. It may be an idea for a great business opportunity, or a random act of kindness you can do for a stranger. You may be able to help someone in need or give someone needed words of comfort or encouragement.

Look for opportunities and when they come – seize the day! Once you’re on the lookout for them, you’ll see them all around you.

Who knows, you may get a breakthrough business idea that could change your life. (Ideas are part of the Goldmine within you.) You may meet the man or woman of your dreams. A door may open for a great new career opportunity.

Keep your eyes open and seize the day! Be grateful and choose to have a joyful, pleasant demeanor and personality. Choose to be kind to others, even when you have nothing to gain from it.

Show compassion. Help someone out. Show kindness. Look for opportunites. Seize the day and change the world! Choose to be your best you and be a part of the solution rather than part of the problem. One person can make a big difference.