Optimism

I believe you need a kind of optimism in life…

Not that things will just work out …

But that you control your own destiny …

Your decisions matter…

Social media and newsfeeds and still, others…

Would say otherwise …

But these places work off of the extremes of the individual response …

That’s the algorithm…they are not speaking for the rest of us…

That’s all the algorithm understands…

I recently left social media for that reason…

Where else but here and now ?

Are we able to humble ourselves before Divine Providence and take on our day

Unleash the power of the individual…

To create our own lives …

Our own outcomes …

Now, as a father, as a leader….

Who would want to be lead by a critical negative doomsday sayer?

We must lead …

Having the courage to begin

The optimism

To cast a vision

Yes, understand the reality

Of where you are

But we are not staying here

We are moving forward

And we are building a life we can be proud of

We control our own destiny

Our own outcomes

Why wait?

begin

Our sons and daughters are watching

Our history compels us

Those who came before us

And opened shops and invested their time and savings

And turned that into industries

Railroads

Retail

Lives that were built with courage and sacrifice …

These stories are our stories …

Still today …

Move forward

Lead

What else is there?

The future is too great

We’ve been blessed so much

We must be good stewards

Me must lead

We must create our lives

Begin

What else is there?

-E

What got you here …

What got you here won’t get you there…

a known phrase in business…

also applies to life I believe.

You want to see someone wilt in front of you, become defensive, and just shut down…

criticise them.

It’s been called a lot of things,

Nagging, henpecked, micromanaging…

But what about the voice used when talking to oneself?

I was good at this one thing …

But what got me here won’t get me there…where I aim to be and where I’ve set my goal…

I must become good and go from good to great and this means growth…

I have to undertake difficult things…uncomfortable things…

——-

Everyday there’s countless distractions, grooming us on how important we are…and how much more we deserve …

We have the best economy in the world, the global 1 percent is us…30k something a year and that’s the GLOBAL 1 percent …

We’ve never had it better…

But am I aware or am I just coasting on autopilot?

Just showing up …waiting for my annual raise …

Just showing up …

Waiting for my annual vacation

Just showing up waiting on my “passive income.”

Just showing up …

Like I did in baseball

Knowing I’ll get a photo and a trophy at the end of the year …

Just show up …

Where’s the burden ?

The weight

The work …

Hard conversations …

The practice field where the sweat and the blood and the scars and the bad habits are broken and new ones formed…

Practicing basics …

so well understood …

That we don’t move or compromise on them …

This is where values are forged

This is where we don’t compromise

This is where we look at ourselves and we understand …

Life is a series of stages …

What got us here won’t get us there…

We must be growing …

What else is there?

– E

Steps

We use algorithms we don’t understand

We play and post every day

These things influence us

And we can’t even see it…

We say we want relationship

But I wonder what our relationship with anger is?

How does it relate to us?

What role does anger play in my life?

When I feel it rising…

Or maybe my thoughts of conflict

How do I deal with it?

How do I handle conflict?

Do I return to the table ?

Do I build back?

What’s the base value ?

What am I building ?

Am I learning and growing

Improving from last year ?

Last week?

Just yesterday?

Maybe there’s more room here…

More room to grow

-E

Begin today

When Dietrich Bonhoeffer began his school of ministry… his colleagues came to tell him he was too extreme…too radical…just calm down…Relax…take it easy…

Bonhoeffer took them up the hill…and looking out over the valley there was a Nazi training camp…pointing to his school of ministry he said to them “THIS….must be STRONGER than THAT…”

This must be stronger than that.
——
When I think about marriage and fatherhood…
I know I have a picture in my head of what these things look like…
The awesome responsibility,
——

Christ felt that weight …
He stumbled and fell three times carrying his own cross…

He prayed until his sweat became blood…

Job cries out “though he slay me!! …”
“Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him!”

———
This must be stronger than that…
Than all the things screaming for our attention…
Than streaming , internet, apps, alcohol, shortcuts…
Everything out there and within …
——-
Christ said to Peter, “upon this ROCK I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
——

We are appalled at education and schools but then we hand our children phones with access to the world eternal…
——

I don’t want to just be a dad…
Who gets a trophy just for showing up…
Bare minimum…base value…here’s your card for best dad of the year…

There’s a foundation to be made …
There’s leadership we are called to…

I want to be a father…
A mighty oak within my family …
So there …all the time … that there isn’t a question in their mind as to the stability…
Nor the consistency of my presence …
Like the fact that the sun is going to rise tomorrow…

This must be stronger than that…

Begin today…
Begin…

What will I leave behind?
Maybe
We are called to be mighty oaks within our family legacy …
Steadfast …
Proven…
Faithful
Leaders …
Is it too late?
Begin today…
What else is there?
-E

Hope

In case no one told you lately…
You CAN do hard things …
You can get sober …
You can get control of your finances …
Save and invest…build wealth for your children and change your family legacy…
You have a future …
Without addiction and bad habits …
Who’s going to raise your children?
Lead your family?
Streaming services?
Apps?
Or
You…

You get to decide…
Decide …
Build …
Change your legacy…
It’s hard …
But it’s worth more than you realize or can even imagine …
Lift that weight
Carry that responsibility …
Be unfazed by any headlines …
Control the controllable …

Greg Maddux could have pitched faster …but he chose to have more control …
He was in his pitch…
Take control of your life and lead ….

Decide …
What else is there?

-E

More than enough

“In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has”— Proverbs 21:20


“No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”

Hebrews 12:11


Imagine having more than enough…
Imagine being disciplined
Focused
I’ve spent 20 years in grocery
When I left to come to my current company
They didn’t just jump to take me
They interviewed me twice
And told right you front
“This may not be for you, the culture, the standards, it’s not for everyone.”
Right now there are 7 million men refusing to join the workforce …
I remember the housing crisis
I remember the stacks of applications
It scared me
I wanted more than enough
I wanted security
I wanted ownership
I wanted to stand and grow
Discipline is hard
But it’s more than just adventure and experiences
It’s slow
It’s painful
It’s sacrifice
But it’s worth it
You’re worth it
And you get to decide
-E

Intention

“Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.”

Proverbs 4:25,26

Be content where you are, knowing you’re building something to leave your children…

I paid off my credit cards …
I’ve been smart and I’ve been real, real stupid, I’ve been debt free and I’ve gotten right back in it.

Working for a debt free company opened my eyes to the freedom that brings in a new way and how it has to be intentional, everyday…

So many things really are about lifestyle…
How you choose to live and work…
It has to be intentional…
Nothing just happens…

Now when I look at my son, I know he is watching everything I do…not just what I say…

It has to be a lifestyle …

“You not only have to be right, you have to look right.”

– George Jenkins

Time

Seneca said, “It is not that we have a short space of time, but that we waste much of it. Life is long enough, and it has been given in sufficiently generous measure to allow the accomplishment of the very greatest things if the whole of it is well invested.”

We need a long term vision and we must pass that to those coming after us…
We must bring our best everyday…why would we bring anything less than our best?

It takes a sense of urgency
A lifestyle
New habits
Someone said we could retire with millions BUT it takes ownership and commitment and time.
Nothing happens overnight.
Move forward …
Long term vision and accepting reality…
Where we are and the role we play in it…
And then an action based plan to move forward…

What else is there ?

-E