Friday, February 29, 2008

The Bigger Picture

Everyday we wake up and go on with our lives. With all that we do though there is a Bigger Picture. I once believed that faith was just a "backup plan." You know in case there really was a Hell and you didn't want to go. Well then you go to church, try to behave, and live your life as a careful person. Through the years I have learned that it is much different then that.

That faith is laying your life down every single day knowing that no matter what situation you are in God will help you get through it. That christians aren't wimpy individuals that are so called "perfect." In fact God wants us as christians to be WARRIORS! He wants us to be strong in our faith and all that we do.

So let me ask you...Would you lay your life, and everything you own down for what you believe? That is the bigger picture. See we as humans only see what revolves around a small portion of our lives. Our neighbors, friends, family, co-workers, or old class mates. What about the guy at the gas station on your way to work? What about the lady or guy that held the door for you today? What about the kid bagging your groceries? Yeah yeah so you are thinking "Josh what about them?"

Have you ever stopped to think about whats going on in there lives? Have you ever wondered what they are dealing with? The only reason I ask this is because I used to never care. I didn't even think twice about the people that I interacted with throughout the day. My life was brought into a whole new perspective when I started caring a little bit more about everyone else then I did about myself.

You begin to see the good in people, you begin to see a glisten in there eye when you have changed there lives just by doing a small act of kindness. It truly changes who you are and really opens your eye to the "Bigger Picture" idea. The little things in life can make your day go from absolutely terrible to truly amazing in no time flat Guaranteed!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Open Eyes... Clear View

At what point in reality do we actually see and realize everything that is going on around us? Is it when we are kids and don't have a care in the world? Maybe its that moment in our lives when we find the person we were meant to spend the rest of our lives with. I think sometimes we wait until everything is going wrong in our lives to be thankful for what we've had all along. The last week has been somewhat rough, and through it all I am grateful for what I have. Unfortunately it took a lot of stuff to go wrong before I realized it, but at least I am on the right track. Emotional drama with close friends, quit my job that was basically my second family, flat tire, moving out of my apartment, etc. All of this was done in somewhat a split second decision. I acted more on emotions than thought and didn't even care. Only to wake up and realize that if you don't have a form of income coming in then you can't pay your normal expenses. I have faith that it will all work out. I am blessed with my new career as a small business insurance consultant, I am looking forward to passing my state exam next week, and my aunt and uncle have blessed me with a place to stay for the time being. With all of that being said what does it truly mean to have a clear view of our lives? Is it the things we do to get by and pay bills? Are we living in a life of hopes and dreams to maybe someday be in a tropical paradise with not a care in the world? What motivates us to get up each and everyday to do something we probably don't like to do? Mainly Money, Family, and the worst one of all Debt. These three things are probably the reason we are all where we are now and not where we'd like to be. Being that I don't have a wife and kids it is very easy for me to go from one job to the next, or one major in college to the next. Sure my family thinks I am crazy and I know deep down they are saying "Josh just get a degree, something, ANYTHING." Two years in college and I have lots of classes under my belt but no degree. The reason for this is because I don't want to be confined to one thing that I may not like doing. Believe it or not this really got to me a while back and I sat down. With all my thoughts and all my ideas. I came up with questions on what I want to do with my life, what I like doing for fun, and what my hobbies were. I put the things that I love to do into a career and then started chasing those for careers. Now I feel like I am in the right place helping people and wanting to better myself. I am going to go back to college and get a degree to better myself in my new career. I am finally where I have always wanted to be. Even though people may not think its the best decision for me, it doesn't really matter. You need to look at what YOU love to do, and what you want out of life. Sure ask your husband, wife, or significant other if they think its a good idea and if they will support you. When it all boils down though do it for you and do it for your family. If you are happy then there happiness will follow. It may be something as little as picking up and old hobby again, or just doing something you love to do but have never had the chance to. MAKE TIME! Most of all open your eyes to your surroundings. Don't wait until what you have is gone, to realize how awesome it was. Realize how awesome it IS and always keep your positive attitude.

The worlds a beautiful place, keep a clear view!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Definition of Love!

Sorry I havent posted lately I wanted to give everyone a few days to think primarlily about what love is, who you need to love, and the positive impact it has on you! Well just a few days ago on Valentines Day I saw what love is first hand. There was a pretty bad car accident that I witnessed and everyone in the vacinity jumped out of there vehicles immediately to help both individuals that they didnt even know. It was just truly amazing! When I got to the car that was hit both drivers were out of there vehicles and perfectly fine. There were about six people who jumped into action and showed hope in the world. A lady and her daughter, a firefighter, a guy in an SUV, and a few other people helping the two drivers. The guy in the SUV called OnStar immediately, the lady and her daughter checked to see if everyone was alright, the firefighter turned on his lights, blocked traffic, and started immediately helping the situation, and everyone was working together. Now that is truly LOVE! Strangers never met before were all trying to do everything they possibly could to help out. Everyone could have easily just called 911 and drove off but instead took the time out of there lives to care. So I dedicate this post to all the people who don't get recognized for being awesome individuals. Also since I wrote the last post I have been trying to practice what I preach more and more. The other day I let a guy go in front of me at the checkout line in meijers. We started talking and the guy was the nicest person ever. It just had a major impact on my life to realize that everyone has a good side, and it is worth my time and everything to show my good side. That small little conversation made the rest of my day go wonderfully. Whenever something wasnt going for me I would think back to how happy he was and how I can impact someones life today. Which made me immediately smile and press on. I can't stress enough how important attitude in life is. If you have a positive attitude and allow God to work in your life then you WILL see results. I try to take a few minutes out of my life every morning before I get ready for my day, and every night before I go to bed to pray. You're all probably thinking well he has a wonderful "perfect" life and its easy for him to say. So I will take a few minutes to share a few recent weeks of my life. I have been living in an apartment for six months now with a buddy of mine that I used to work with. Well he ended up moving out and it was looking like I was going to have to pay more for rent than usual. I have a part time job and basically that means all my money earned would go into my rent, gas, and food. That same week I get recognized for being a great sales rep for at&t but unfortunately not a wonderful employee in there eyes. The company wanted to show that they discipline so they gave me a write up and didnt really explain why. On top of that there was a female that I have liked for a while and I was going to just leave it all behind and go see her for V-Day. Well that ended up falling through for other reasons. It just wasnt looking very good but I trusted that if I kept my head held high and allowed God to work in my life he would. Sure enough it is all changing around. At the office of my apartment complex I spoke to them about the situation and they found someone to take over my lease. I was also fortunate enough to get an interview with an amazing company where I would be doing sales. Oh and the female that I like is still super amazing and is helping me grow closer to God. But in the end the one thing that you must always remember is God will never ever fail you. He will ALWAYS love you. So if next week is the same as this week I am still willing to commit every single thing I have to God. Just take a few minutes to realize that Love is what you make of it. Love is in you, love is YOU, love is everything good, and most importantly GOD IS LOVE!

Hope everyone had a happy V-day and remember that even though Feb 14th is over doesnt mean you should quit loving.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

What is love?

Tomorrow is V-day so I hope you remembered to get your significant other something to show your LOVE and appreciation :). If not I highly recommend you run to the store tonight and get something sentimental. For those of you who don't have significant others... I would just have to recommend to be patient. See the thing is if you chase love you will never catch it, but if you let love happen... IT WILL! I decided to put the weight of my romance in the hands of God. See the story goes something like this. Average kid grows up chasing girls his whole life searching for someone that can make each and every moment with them memorable. Tries, tries, tries and is caught up in the blindness of believing he has finally found her. Well life goes on and after a while of not being together they both realize they weren't right for each other at all. She continues on dating and trying, while he does the complete opposite. He realizes that in order to begin a strong long lasting relationship he must first be happy with himself. See fellas you can't look for the answer in the beauty. Meaning you can't find your answers to who you are, or what you are simply by asking your wife or your girlfriend. Although they love you for who you are and what you are they don't get what us men need. If we can't be happy with ourselves, our jobs, our lives then we can't expect our loved ones to tell us we're happy. Now granted I am not in a relationship with anyone. One thing is for sure though I have realized and learned a lot through others relationships. All through High School, College, and to this day I am asked constantly for dating advice. See the way I see it is before the world stops and begins revolving around you, theres one thing you need to realize. The more you give, the more you receive. If you do something good for someone, the favor will be returned. Ha ha did you think I was really going to tell you how the world would just revolve around you? Well I just did, and its just that simple. Everything will go your way if you just give everything away. You have got to be thinking I'm crazy right about now. First of all I don't mean go and give everything you own away. What I mean is give whatever you can. For example my Aunt: sweetest lady ever she is always giving everything away and even if she doesn't realize it she WILL get everything back tenfold. If someone does something for her she goes COMPLETELY out of her way to do something for them. In return she has tons of friends and people that would be willing to do anything for her. Her husband who is the same way he would do anything to make you laugh and make sure you are always happy. Just absolutely great people and if you would like to return one of the many favors they have given please stop by her store in Howell, Michigan. Its called Stitch In Time. I have many people in my family that if all they had was one dollar and someone around them needed it. They would give that dollar in a heart beat knowing that somehow they would survive. Its just those little gestures like chasing someone down in the parking lot and giving them a pie because they did something nice for you or coming to visit your kid who is five hours away just to show you love him, or just having a positive attitude and willing to give back to the world. The question again is what is love? What do you think love is? Do you think its a relationship between two people? Do you think its something that can alter and change your life? Do you think its the little things in life you do for someone you don't even know? Could love be giving your life for someone you don't know? I believe that love is many things and that there is one love that was given we must never forget. I speak of God in almost every single post and thats because I believe that without him we wouldn't have love. God showed more love then any of us can ever even fathom. John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." Now that is love! Jesus died on the cross for US! We didn't even exist when this happened, and he still did this for us. He did this for EVERYONE! Could you imagine giving your life for everyone? Before he died he said " Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." (Luke 23:34) That is absolutely amazing! Do you ever get mad when you're driving and someone cuts you off? Do you ever get mad at anyone for anything? Well imagine someone doing the worst possible thing and you turning around and giving your life and asking God the creator of all to forgive them. WOW! That is my definition of true love and if you didn't like this post then TOO BAD haha. Everybody have a good V-day and try and do something amazing for that significant other.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

What if you died this second?

The title may scare you but that is not its intent. Every day we go on with our lives and try to ignore how were living and what were living for. Last night I wasn't so ready to die but I did. As I went to the mountains with a bunch of friends I tried jumping onto the icy part of a lake to cross it. I was talking to my friend Nick and in mid air I felt like I was going to make it. At this point my life was fine, I have lived and tried to live for God. There is no doubt that I could definitely do a lot more for him. Anyway last thing I remember is hitting the cold water looking up and seeing my friends standing around the gap I fell through. I immediately tried swimming to the surface but couldn't make it, because I was sinking so fast. It felt like something was pulling me down. After a few seconds the light faded and I was in complete darkness in this icy water. Everything I loved and everything in my life had left me. I knew that I was not going to make it and out of nowhere I had a restful easy feeling about it all. I prayed a little prayer in my head and it was something like this "God take me as I am all yours, nothing in me wants anything but to love you." Then the next thing was loss of air, movement, and all my internal organs quit. I felt a lot of pressure and then I thought to myself whats next? As my life of earthly happiness passed me by... I woke up. I woke up gasping for air and wanting to see God. He showed up in more ways then I can even explain. I believe he gave me this dream to show me a lot of things. To show me that my life of happiness is really nothing compared to what it could be if I just served him. That happiness/contentment isn't something that is merely achieved but instead something that is applied. Also I learned that we need to cherish and live in each moment we have on this earth. The small things in my life that I believe to be important mean nothing when I die. So what I am going to do is try my absolute hardest to live for all the right reasons. Its as simple as being observant of your surroundings. Taking a second out of your day to help someone you see is in need, maybe telling your wife/husband or significant other that you love them, maybe its just smiling and helping someone in your family out, maybe its allowing somebody at meijers to go in front of you at the check out line. It could even be a small prayer for someone around you. Its the little things in life that matter so much we don't even realize it or live by it. WWJD or What would Jesus Do? is a good thing but the real question is knowing what jesus would do what are you GOING to do? What if you died this second? Would you be happy with the contribution you made to the world? Think on this and trust that God has all the answers. Nothing is too big or too small for him. He loves each and everyone of us.

Are you ready?

The question is are you ready? You are probably thinking right now am I ready for what? Well are you ready to be amazed at what is in store for you? Are you ready for what the world has to offer? Living life as a successful person doesn't mean being the owner of a Fortune 500 company. It just means able to live within your means and truly enjoy what life has to offer. Everyone always says well if I had more money, if I just did this, if I just got this or that. 95% of people who say that and end up getting what they want end up wanting more. Why is that? Why is it that so many people believe they need materialistic objects to make them happy? One of my friends a while back told me that money bought happiness. Haha I asked him why he wasnt happy then? Response: I don't have any money. I said again why arent you happy it sounds like you spent it all :). If it buys happiness why is it that famous people are always begging for help and constantly attending rehab centers? Why is it that kids in other countries who barely have enough food to survive are always smiling and having a good time knowing they will eat for a few weeks longer? Simple money doesnt buy happiness it is just an object that many people use to let control there lives. There is a price that was already paid in full for our happiness and that price is Jesus being crucified for our sins. Happiness is simple its the mindset in which you live your life. If you wake up in the morning and your day starts off bad think about the price that was already paid. Do you think you suffer more than Jesus suffered for us? NO! Do you think that all the days of your life can amount to one second of his pain? NO! Dont feel sorry for yourself because nobody is going to want to be around you. Cheer up and you will be amazed at what God will do for you. Are you ready? I bring you back to that question because I truly care. Are you ready to be happy? Are you ready for God to work in your life and the life of the ones you love? If the answer to this question is yes then please please please pray. Pray for the ones who are lost to this concept. Pray for the ones who dont know where to go. Pray for everyone who is hurting and everyone who needs happiness.


Saturday, February 9, 2008

Life Changing!

I thought I was in control of my life... I thought I had everything planned and that if I just got this or I just did that I would be happy. I was far from happiness and I didn't even know it. Trying to listen to family, friends, whoever just to get somewhere in life. But some things you have to figure out for yourself. I wrote a blog earlier today about success... That blog was about reaching success getting to the point where you succeed like it had an end. Do what you love and live in the moment of doing that thing you love. If I ruin every single thing in my life from this point forward I hope that I at least do this one thing right.... and thats to follow my dreams! I might not be the happiest if I ever reach my dreams but what makes me happiest will be the journey :). Tonight I watched a movie and first of all I must recommend it to all who read this article I am writing. Its called the "Peaceful Warrior" and it is by far the best movie I have ever watched. It changed my life because of all the insight it had and all the knowledge that I gained. I now have an understanding of where I am and what my journey is ahead of me.

Friday, February 8, 2008


I have always wondered what I would do for a living and where I might be. My whole life I have planned and tried to control everything that I do. Choosing your career and what you will do for the rest of your life is a HUGE deal! How can one truly only pick one career and be happy with that decision? I started by asking myself questions such as: what do I enjoy doing in life?, If I could get paid to do something I loved what would it be?, what must I do to make a career out of these ideas?, and so on. This was the start to something amazing! I ended up going to Baker College for EKG Technician because well everyone knows that the medical field makes good money, and it sounded like a pretty fun job. When I arrived at orientation after all paperwork was signed I was advised that there no longer was an EKG program and that I would have to change majors. So I decided to go into medical assisting 2 year associates program. After living the college life and not being able to pass the beautiful college girl down the hall up when she asked if I could help her with her homework until 2am. I realized I needed to change so that I could get a good education and have a balanced life. Also in college I was completely broke I had maybe $400 in my bank account. Anyway a long story shortER haha, I ended up getting a job at at&t full time. WOW the highest paying job I have ever made! At the age of 19 I was pretty happy. I still work for at&t but now I have my own company Spark Boards Inc. A snowboarding, wakeboarding, and skateboarding company. I am now happy with my decisions and trying to get the company off the ground. If anyone would like to help me out they can Donate money on the Spark Blog on the right hand side. I finally took my own advice and am trying to make a career out of something I love Snowboarding, wakeboarding, and skateboarding. Moral of the story do what makes you happy and if you make a career out of it you really cant go wrong.