Faith Edition - What Does a Canoe Have to Do With It? By Rick White, President 180BIZ
I think we need a day where we can unplug, slow down and reflect. I think that there is a reason for Genesis and the whole seven days thing. I think it's important, to slow down and really refresh, recharge, unplug, and fill yourself back up.
I don't know if you know this about me. I've been very involved with the Boy Scouts my entire life. I've been an Assistant Scoutmaster for 12 years and a Cubmaster for five years. So, one of the things that I was thinking about is that typically we’re either walking or running through life. And if you think about it, there's only one part of you, one point of contact between you and the earth. Now we do that because we have this gift called gravity that helps us to keep our feet on the ground. Most of the time we're able to get through life with just one point of contact. Cause if you think about it, you're walking to open. Good morning. It's either your left foot is touching the ground or your right foot is touching the ground. But that's it. And then what happens is we get into something like this and it really starts to rock our world.
And, and the issue is we don't have enough points of contact. I was thinking about it this morning and suddenly I remembered when I learned how to canoe. Yes. Canoe. That’s when get in the little boat with paddle and go down the river. We teach the boy scouts to always have three points of contact when they're getting an in and out of the canoe. Why? Because the canoe is really shaky. The canoe has a lot of movement to it. And if you try to go in with just your one point of contact like you do on the ground, you're going swimming. We taught the boys to have three points of contact on the canoe at all times. It keeps you steady and you're able to get in and out of the canoe without incident. You stay dry. Trust me. It made me think about what we're going through right now. It’s kind of like getting in and out of a canoe. It’s shaky and over the place. That’s what we need. We need three points of contact in our lives right now. I asked myself, “What are my three points of contact?” And that's what I want to share with you today.
(1) My Faith in God. My first point of contact to get through this virus situation is my faith in God. Not a God that loves me, but a God that is love. I hope that you believe in a higher power. I hope that you have faith in something that's bigger than yourself. Bigger than you. There are things that we can't control. I can let them go. But you might be thinking, “Well, why is God letting this happen?” God gave us an incredible gift of free will. Not another species on this planet has free will and the ability to create. Every other species is hardwired. They can work within a certain parameter to survive. We are the only species on this planet that can think of something and create it. And he gave us free will and still he makes good out of it.
The Bible promises that he is going to make good out of ashes. He will bring beauty. The fact that he loves me, and I don't deserve it. I read something, not too long ago, and it said justice is what you deserve, mercy is not getting what you deserve, and grace's getting what you don't deserve. I think that's amazing. My first contact point is my faith in God. And let me tell you something. I am far from perfect. In fact, Peter is one of my favorite disciples because he had the trash mouth. But I keep working on getting better. Anytime that I feel like I'm apart from God, it's not God withdrawing from me. Romans 8:35 it says, I cannot separate from the love of God. It is me pulling back, not him, not her. Whichever you believe. That's my first point of contact.
(2) Love of My Family. My second point of contact is the love of my family. My wife is amazing. Brenda has been the greatest gift I have ever gotten in my life. It’s the unconditional love that she gives me and the belief she has in me. Brenda is such an amazing person. She is my hero. She is so caring, so others' focused, so thoughtful and smart. She challenges me, she pushes me, supports me, and comforts me. I wish I could be half the partner to her that she is as to me. Next, there’s my kids. I have seven children. The oldest is 39 and the youngest is 23. It's one of those things where I see my kids and I'm amazed that they can walk and chew gum at the same time. But they are such a great bunch of kids. They've grown up to be so amazing. And if I died right now, I would be so proud of who I have as kids.
And then I have grandkids. I joke when I say grandkids are God's gift to us for allowing our kids to survive their teenage years. And I laugh about that. But the grandkids are such a gift. I just absolutely love the grandkids and I want to show them what's possible. I want them to see what somebody can do in this world when they put their mind to it. That's my second touch point. My contact point is my family, the love of my family.
(3) Belief in Myself. My third contact point is belief in myself. Not the belief not in my abilities. Because. I have never, ever, ever dealt with a pandemic. I don't know what the heck I'm doing, but I have enough history in my life to know that this, too, shall pass. I have been in car accidents that laid me up. I have lost businesses. I have gotten screwed over by people. I have gone through bankruptcy. I've been delinquent in taxes. I've been divorced twice. I went through a period of time where I didn't see two of my kids for seven years and that absolutely tore me up. So, I have never dealt with a pandemic before, but I have enough victory in my life where I have overcome it. I have 100% overcome every challenge that's come in my life. That’s 100%. I don't have that number anywhere else. I have 100% overcome every challenge that's been put in my life. And I truly believe that on this side of it, every challenge has been for me. It has happened for me, not to me. There's a reason for it, a purpose behind it, and a lesson within it. Those divorces. As much as they hurt, but I can share my experiences and things that I’ve learned along the way with someone else going through it too.
My thought is on this pandemic is, “Bring it on. Let's go. I got this too!” So, it's not that I believe in my abilities. I haven't developed those yet. I believe in my capabilities. I believe in my resourcefulness. I believe that I will find a way to overcome it based on everything else I've been through in my life. Can you say the same thing?
I hope you can because I think if you look back, you should be pretty proud of what you've been through. They say that when you get a scar or you break a bone, where the skin and the bone heal is stronger than the skin around it. And that's why I believe that life is tough and we're all going to get knocked down and it's our duty responsibility and an obligation to help each other get through life to become more. What are your three contact points that will keep your head above water? That’s what will be the light for yourself, for your family (including your business family), and for your community.
So, what are your three contact points that you're going to lean on and rely upon to get through this in one piece? Not only to survive, but to thrive. The Bible says, I believe it's in Jeremiah 29 11, that I do not mean to harm you. I mean to prosper you. And I probably just slaughtered that. That just tells you I'm a work in process.
If this has been helpful to you, please share it. I truly want to get out there and help as many people as I possibly can. So, I ask you to reflect. I ask you to step back today. Rest, recharge, let go, relax, stop staring at the problem and look at the joy in your life. See your families, see the grace and the gifts that are in your life today. And then just get whole. There's going to be more stuff going on next week. There's going to be more states that are closing down. There's going to be more fear and more tension. We must be the soldiers right now. Soldiers of light. And I know that sounds corny, but I think that's really appropriate. We have to be soldiers of light to help other people around us get through this. I'm hoping I can count on you to share this message, adopt this message, and help me with this message.
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