Launch Into the Deep and Cast Your Net

The school bell has rung, class is now in session.

It is human nature for us to want to do things our own way because ultimately, we believe we know what is best for us. This is especially the case in our area of expertises. Did you know that sometimes, even an expert could still use some help?

This reminds me of Simon Peter. He was a Professional Fisherman, who had been doing it most of his life. He knew the proper weather conditions for fishing, and the proven techniques to use in order to catch fish. One day, he was out on his boat with Jesus, on the Lake of Gennesaret, also know as the Sea of Galilee, and Jesus had been teaching from his boat most of the day. After he finished teaching, he told Simon Peter to launch out into the deep, and cast his net.

Simon Peter was a little exasperated by the directive, and replied that he had already been working all night and caught nothing. He also could have been a little upset because he was a Professional Fisherman by trade, while Jesus was a Carpenter. Not to mention, there had been large crowds around most of the day, so the fish were probably scared away.

*Important Point* Have you ever been in this predicament? Felt as though you had been working diligently for, or towards something, only to receive nothing in return? If you have, then you understand how annoying it is for someone, who seemingly knows less than you about the subject, tells you to keep continue trying. If someone is telling you that right now, you have two choices. You can continue trying, or give up. Which one will you choose?

Choose one

Simon Peter decided to try again, and replied saying, “Nevertheless, at your word, I will let down the net.” Choosing to believe Jesus’s word, created an opportunity of abundance. Simon Peter ended up catching so many fish in the net, that it started to break! He had to solicit help from their partners in a neighboring boat. Each boat became so full, they almost began to sink!

Because Simon Peter chose to ignore the obvious and listen to Jesus’s word, he was rewarded with catching so many fish that he couldn’t contain it all. Simon Peter believed the word and not his circumstances.

*Take Away* We can work very hard, and for a long time without ever seeing results, but when Jesus directs our work, the results will be inevitable!

Wellness Tip: Eat and Drink more antioxidants, they protect your cells against free radicals, which may play a role in heart disease, cancer and other diseases. Free radicals are molecules produced when your body breaks down food or when you’re exposed to tobacco smoke or radiation. Foods high in antioxidants.

The school bell has rung, class dismissed.

No Fishing in the Sea of Forgetfulness

The school bell has rung, class is now in session.

Over a year ago, I wrote a post about the Spirit of Anti-Progress. If you would like to read it, there will be a link at the end of this post.

Another enemy of progress that I would like to focus on is self-condemnation. The root word of condemnation is condemn. The definition is below:

Key words that stood out from the definition are:

Disapproval

Punishment

Criticize

Castigate

These are severe words that have a negative connotation attached to them. Imagine if you constantly subjected yourself to self-disapproval, self-punishment, self-criticism and self-castigation. How far would you go physically, mentally or spiritually?

Progression IS

Progression is seeing a goal in front of you, kicking the ball into the direction of the goal, and scoring! Progression is seeing the goal, missing sometimes, but doing your best to win the game. Progression is also taking the strategies learned from your losses, and using them to play better the next time.

Progression IS NOT

Progression is not entertaining self-loathing thoughts on a regular basis. Progression is not telling yourself that you are incompetent every other second because you made a mistake. Progression is not perfection.

The failures of yesterday happened either by accident, or on purpose. The failures may have been the result of something out of your control. The good news is that it does not have to define who you are today, or what you will do from this point on. Everyone has made mistakes in their past, even done or said things they were ashamed of; the key is to not allow the feeling to carry on into the next day.

There are two encouraging scriptures I would like to share: The first passage points out that when God forgives sin, He no longer remembers it, and the second passage says that God cast all of our sins into the depths of the sea. This occurs whenever we repent of our wrong-doing. The Sea of Forgetfulness is a metaphor relating to these two passages of scripture.

Hebrews 8:12 (KJV) 
12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more. 

Micah 7:19 (KJV) 
19 He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. 

These passages should bring us comfort because if God forgets our transgressions after we repent to him, why should we continue to condemn ourselves over them?

It is toxic to repeatedly play negative thoughts about your past, yourself and others.

Toxic Thoughts

Allowing negativity in your mind will eventually brew an environment of anti-progress. Why? Because in order to progress, you have to be in the mind frame of goal setting, and developing steps towards those goals. Continuous thoughts about things that have gone wrong yesterday, is an enemy to progress.

Takeaways

Get out of your head. (Stop letting your imagination run away from you, not everyone is against you. Sometimes you may be wrong about your conclusions of another person. Do not let your negative self-talk, conversations rule your mind so much that you lose sight of what is happening in the world around you.)

Monitor what you put in your ear and eye gate. (In the age of Social Media, we have to be aware that most of what is displayed is negative, or meant to invoke a negative response. Be mindful of what you read, listen to and watch. If it does not add to you, it may be taking away something valuable.)

Do not dwell on past failures. (Learn from them, and carry on.)

Surround yourself with people who support/build, instead of tearing down. (You have heard of the ole English Proverb, Birds of a feather flock together. It is only ok to keep people in your close friend circle if you all are planning to fly in the same direction. Otherwise, politely keep them in the outer courts.)

We all have failed at something, but that does not mean we have to remain at Camp Failure. Stop the self-condemnation, you have too much to accomplish in your life to focus on yesterday. It is time to start thinking about your next steps right now!

When I was a teacher, I remember having students compare and contrast SMART Goals vs the Regular Goals, and it was a game changer for them. Try using it towards your next goal, it will make a huge difference.

SMART Goals

The school bell has rung, class dismissed.

Wellness Tip:

Get enough sleep (and wake up with water)

The body restores itself and regenerates naturally when we sleep. Wake up with water. Your liver works hard at night! Rehydrate in the morning (before having coffee) with one to two glasses of warm lemon water.

“Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do. “ ~Pele

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