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Auto Repair Shop Owner's Daily Dose 14: Faith and Decisions (Faith)


Faith and Decisions by Rick White, President 180BIZ

In this episode, I’ll talk about our faith in different parts of our lives, about being able to tap into something bigger and greater than we are. I am not the most religious man. Lord knows I've got a mouth sometimes. I am perfectly imperfect and at the same time, I have such faith.  I think that is what's helping me get through everything that I've been through in my life.  It got me through two divorces and bankruptcy.  When I went through those divorces, I couldn't understand why.  I would ask God, “Why am I going through this?” Then fast forward 20 years and I'm helping other people stay married. I'm helping other people go through the pain of divorce. I'm helping other people find love. It’s all because I went through that pain.

I think what is really screwing with us right now is that we are all so self-reliant. We have been brought up or taught ourselves that our success is completely on us.  If it is to be, it’s up to me. I believe that we must take action, but we shouldn't get our sense of security from outside circumstances or outside situations and events. If so, we’ll be on a constant roller coaster. It means we feel great when things are great, and we feel horrible when things aren’t going so well.  I don’t think that's the way life is supposed to be lived. Do you? I am going to share with you the reason why I'm bringing this up today.

In the past week, I've been working with shop owners that are making decisions based on fear.  I read a book called Peaks and Valleys by Spencer Johnson.  One of the things that really stuck with me is that you never ever, ever make a decision in a valley. Why? Because it's always going to be a reaction. It’s always going to be a retreat. I have to be completely transparent here. Out of all the daily doses, this is the scariest one for me because there's that little voice inside saying, “Who are you to share something of faith? You are a sinner, you are weak, you are bad.”  But I truly believe this is why God put me on this earth. It’s to help others. So, I'm thinking about making decisions in fear. I’ll give you four things I want you to do.

  1. As you feel that pressure cooker inside growing, you feel more and more stress buildup inside, pause.  Just pause.  Take a few deep breaths and stand up tall.  As we get more frustrated and stressed, we tighten up. We breathe more shallowly.  And, causes more stress and more anxiety to build up. So, the first thing I want you to do is pause and take a few deep breaths.
  2. Then pray. And by pray I mean remember who's really in charge. We are not in charge. We have to have something that gives us certainty outside of circumstances, situations, events, and results. For example, if you just had a great week at the shop, you feel in control. Then the next week you have a less than desirable week, you all of a sudden feel unsure. Your house is built on sand. So please, I want you to pray. I want you to pause, step back, let go for a second and then pray. And what I mean by pray is tap into that power that's greater than you. I believe in God, I believe in Jesus, and I am so grateful for the love that they have for us and for me. I'm not worth that. So, I want to share a couple of verses with you.

    Matthew 6:27 - Can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? And we all know the answer is no, but we do it all the time. Remember that worry is payment on a debt we may never own. It robs us of our joy. It robs us of our day. It robs us of the moments with the people in our lives. I am not a biblical scholar so I’ll probably butcher this, but understand it's coming from love.

    Psalm 23: The Lord is my shepherd. I lacked nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside quiet waters. He refreshes my soul.  If we let him, he guides me along the right paths for his name's sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley. And folks, this is pretty dark right now, right? Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil. For you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil. My cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. That is powerful. And that's the Old Testament.

    And then another one that really hits me is Matthew 11:28-30 - Come to me all you who are weary and burdened. Does that sound like a lot of us right now? And I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is late. I think that really means to let go. To recognize what we can and can't do. And then to give, you'll deal with what we can.

    It says in the Bible that God takes care of the birds. He's not throwing the worms in the nest. The birds must go out and get them. We have to take care of ourselves. We have to step up. And we must recognize what's outside of our control.  We talked about the Circle of Control, Circle of Influence, and the Circle of Concern. When we're focused on this virus, when we're focused on fear, when we're focused on this being forever, and we're focused on all this can do, we're focused in the Circle of Concern and it doesn't help anyone.

    So I want you to pray. I want you to get back in touch to find security, not in yourself, but in God and in Jesus, in your higher power, whatever that might be. I want you to find your sense of security in there. So then what I want you to do is hopefully you're going to be centered, you're going to feel better about what's going on, and then you can start to plan.
  3. Prepare. Make your decisions, plan, and prepare.  You’ll be in a better state of mind if you do numbers 1 and 2 first.  You’ll realize that this is just a moment and God has you in the cup of his hands.  God has your name tattooed in his hands.  You are so loved by God and you are precious to him.
  4. Talk to someone.  Don’t bottle all the anxiousness up inside because it will get worse. So, talk to someone.  But be careful who you pick to talk to.  Don’t talk to someone who is afraid.  If you have a concern, and you talk to someone who is afraid, you’re going to develop panic.  And panic needs a network to grow.  You must be intentional about who you talk to.  Talk to someone who has faith and believes that everything will be okay.  Someone who has a plan and has thought it out, someone to ground you.  If you need help, please reach out to me. I want everyone to get through this.  You will become what you feed yourself.  We know that I eat donuts every day of my life, I’m going to end up with a problem.

Paul said, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable. If there is any moral excellence, and if there is anything praiseworthy, dwell on these things.”  Give yourself the gift of feeding your mind positivity and hope and faith and belief. That doesn't mean walking through a garden and pretending there are no weeds. That's not real. Faith is understanding that there are weeds but knowing you can do something about them and knowing that there's somebody bigger and better than all of us.  That bigger and better somebody has us in their hands and has a plan for us.  It says in the Bible that God will turn beauty from ashes. This virus sucks, and what it's doing to us sucks, and it's going to take some of us to step up and be that hero, to be that ordinary person who will step up in extraordinary circumstances or situations and be the bright light.

I want to thank everybody for being here and I'd like to end this with a prayer.  Dear God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Please protect those that have this deadly virus. Please keep us safe, keep us smart, and keep us positive. Help us to be the light in the world, to spread your love, your word, and your sense of peace and calm. I ask this in your son's mighty name. Amen.

Remember, Pause, Pray, and Prepare. And then if you need to find someone to talk to, get yourself grounded, get yourself thinking the right way. Again, you're going to make totally different decisions.

God bless.


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