Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Change Your Heart Change Your Life

What do you really want? What makes you really happy? I think if we are honest, we want health, good relationships, a meaningful life, and enough. How all those desires or lack of desire works itself out in detail of life will be different for you than for me. Health to one person might mean the ability to run a marathon. Health to another person might mean the strength to find her children a source of joy rather than a source of exhaustion. One person might want 100 friends. Another person might want 4 “real” friends.

There is a famous story about an author who was invited as a celebrity guest to billionaire’s party. Another guest speaking with the author observed, “Our host has made more money in a single day than you have earned in your entire life.”

The author replied, “That’s OK I have more money than he does.”

His friend asked, “How can you say that? He is one of the 500 richest men in the world.”

The author smiled, “I have enough.”

What kind of person do you really want to be? How would that person act in different situations?

In seeking a spouse there are really two questions. What kind of husband or wife do I want? In seeking a spouse it is good to have a list of non-negotiable characteristics and a list of desirable characteristics. Get a clear picture of the kind of person with whom you could share a life. Then ask yourself the second question, “Am I the kind of person this man or woman would want to marry?” If the answer is no, you need to change your desires or you need to work on yourself. From my experience, probably both are true.

Once upon a time two Bedouins met by chance traveling in the desert. That evening they shared a campfire. One of the travelers shared that he had spent the last several years on a quest to find the perfect woman. He related his adventures. In this city he found a beautiful woman who had bad values and little in the way of intelligence. In another city he found a woman who was a diligent worker but was quite ugly. He went on with his story until he announced with joy, “Finally I found her. The perfect woman! She was a good worker, beautiful, brilliantly educated, and Godly.” Then he fell silent.

The other traveler asked, “Then what happened?”

The man sighed, “Nothing. It turned out she was looking for the perfect man.”

I think that if we are honest, we understand that we must give to get. This is true in health. Some effort is required to maintain our health. This is true in relationships, especially marriage.

It is also true in money. Ultimately most bad people, no matter how wealthy, come to bad ends. Criminals are the most obvious example of this truth. A successful criminal must be very smart and very lucky to stay in business. It doesn’t take long for success in crime to attract the attention of the police. Once they know your name they have all the time and resources of the state at their disposal to track you down. Likewise, as a criminal, you need to worry about your accomplices and the competition. Most career criminal end up dead or in prison.

“Neutron Jack” Welch earned his name by firing tens of thousands of workers. It was said that like a neutron bomb he destroyed lives and left buildings standing. He made GE one of the most feared, respected, and profitable corporations in the world. But at what cost? Under his command GE Capital became roughly 1/3 of the company. In 2008 the collapse of GE Capital nearly drove one of the greatest and oldest corporations in the world into bankruptcy. Some legal maneuvering saved the day. GE Capital became a bank, making it easier to tap the Federal Government for a lifeline. Neutron Jack became the laughingstock of the financial world when his second wife, a lawyer who understood her prenuptial agreement, nailed his sorry philandering ass to the floorboards. In one of his books, Welch admits that his children (all by his first wife) want nothing to do with him. Yes, he is still wealthy, respected, and feared, but he has become a cautionary tale of wealth misused.

If over time you consistently give back more to world than you receive, you will be blessed. I really believe that. Give your body good food, enough rest, and an appropriate amount of exercise. It is more likely to reward you with good health. Wake up each morning with the intention that you will give your wife or husband more than you receive. Be a good, reliable, trustworthy friend. Strive to become worth more to your employer than your salary. As God blesses you with wealth, share it with others.


No comments:

Post a Comment