Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Outwitting the Devil (in You) - Part 1

Guys, I love reading, because after I read just a few pages, my brain will shut down very quickly and lead me to my sweet dreams! LOL

In fact, reading truly teaches me a lot of things and motivates me in different aspects. 

Recently I am reading/listening to an audio book (for the first time) called OUTWITTING THE DEVIL, by Napoleon Hill. I am a fan of Napoleon. I strongly recommend everyone to read THINK AND GROW RICH, a motivational book that can boost your spirit.




Ok, talking back to Outwitting the Devil, this audio book is narrated by a conversation between an interviewer and the devil. It is interesting. They are discussion how the devil can control human's mind through drifting. Drifting can simply be explained as disability to think independently. I will not explain what it is about in detail here. Read it yourself :D 

The purpose of writing this blog post is to record down the methods protecting us against drifting.
There are ten simple methods highlighted by the devil (a cure from the evil source): 

1. Do your own thinking on all occasions. The fact that human beings are given complete control over nothing save the power to think their own thoughts is laden with significance. 

I have to confess, I am one lazy bug to think on my own. Some time, I opt to listening to others' ideas and seek solutions/recommendations from others. This number 1 is already a big slap on my face to wake me up. I need to have my own thinking, or else who am I? For example, when customer asks me some technical questions, I will do little thinking and dial my boss's number to seek opinions. Perhaps I have no confidence on my answer OR I choose not to think about it myself.
Thus, say "No" to this and start thinking independently. Don't be lazy to come out with our own thoughts.

2.  Decide definitely what you want from life: then create a plan for attaining it and be willing to sacrifice everything else, if necessary, rather than accept permanent defeat.

We are brought up by systematic education, most part of the world is practicing this. Study hard, get good grade and get an excellent job. But the question is, is it what we want from life? Most of the people including me do not know our life purposes at some points of time. Fortunately, some do know their purposes in life. Unfortunately, most do not dare to take the leap in faith. Imagine a manager with $ 100,000 annual income is deciding whether to quit his job and start his/her dream business or keep the status quo. What will be your advice? If he/she decides to quit, he/she has to sacrifice the steady paycheck and takes a risk to venture into new adventure.
Even though the sacrifices are/might be humongous, the fulfillment, gratification and achievement will absolutely satisfy our deepest desires.
A definite goal is necessary and crucial in everyone's life. If we know our definite goal in life, we shall waste time no more and work hard to move towards that striking goal. 

3. Analyze temporary defect, no matter of what nature or cause, and extract from it the seed of an equivalent advantage.

Chinese famous saying goes, "Failure is the mother of success". It is not about how hard we fall, but how much we learn from the failure. Temporary failures contribute to future successes. To say this, it is pretty easy. However, the fear of failure has deterred a lot of people from even trying. 

We need to know, failure is not scary, it is an educational lesson. I love what Thomas Edison had said, "I haven't failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won't work". A little positive thinking is required here. In short, don't be defeated by failure; transform temporary failures to be weapons to conquer our future. 


Source: http://addicted2success.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Thomas-Edison1.jpg


4. Be willing to render useful service equivalent to the value of all material things you demand of life, and render the service first.

From personal interpretation, it talks about the art of giving. We always love to take rather to give. Little example, I love lunch treats from others, but I am not really willing to treat them back (for those not so closed one). I have to confess, this is bad. A peaceful world needs to be in balance of give and take. Imagine everyone in this world only takes, then who gives?
We are familiar with the well known teaching "Give First". I believe if we are willing to give sincerely, people will recognize and be willing to render back. Imagine providing services is like a circle, at the end, the first to offer help will get help from others too.
Note: the highest level of rendering is, provide without expecting any return. 

5. Recognize that your brain is a receiving set that can be attuned to receive communications from the universal storehouse of infinite intelligence, to help you transmute your desires into their physical equivalent. 

I notice a lot of books love to cite "Infinite intelligence". This is how they fill the spiritual needs in human. It is very true, human can't live without faith. That's why the world has a lot of different religions. For me, Lord Jesus Christ is the infinite intelligence. All wisdom comes from Him, the creator of this world. Through prayer, I commit my desires and dreams to Him. I pray for wisdom to identify my life purposes, I pray for courage to take actions, I pray for guidance to keep me in check.
The prayers are the communications with God. 

6. Recognize that your greatest asset is time, the only thing except the power of thought which you own outright, and the one thing which can be shaped into whatever material things you want. Budget your time so none of it is wasted.

This is the biggest slap to wake me up. Time is limited and precious; it is our greatest asset. However I love to waste it in my games, hangout and entertainment. I admire those who are willing to sacrifice sleeping time, hanging out time and fun time to work relentlessly towards their aims. Many successful people sleep less (like 4-6 hours), for instances, Barack Obama and Elon Musk. I am fond of this quote from Donald Trump, "How does somebody that's sleeping 12 and 14 hours a day compete with someone that's sleeping 3 or 4?". Note: Sleep is important!
Besides saving time from cutting sleeping time, the wise management of time in the day is imperative. If you have decided to manage your time wisely, I suggest to work on the habits; Reduce slowly the time-wasting activities; Pick up some beneficial habits like reading during leisure time; Occupy free time with some courses to upgrade yourselves. 

7. Recognize the truth that fear generally is a filler with which the devil occupies the unused portion of your mind. That it is only a state of mind which you can control by filling the space it occupies with faith in your ability to make life provide you with whatever you demand of it.

Fear, the number one tool used by the devil, is truly dominating our lives. To name a few, the fear of failure, the fear of losing and the fear of criticism. However, we need to know we are in control of our lives. Fear is not our master. Fear is inevitable, so we need to recognize it and think of ways to overcome it. Let's say we are afraid to start a business due to a lot of uncertainties. What we can do to overcome our fear is to do research and study to clear all doubts and uncertainties. 
Fear is manageable if you are willing to do so. As the writer explained, we can control by countering our fear with faith. Having faith on ourselves is the key. Be optimistic.

8. When you pray, do not BEG! Demand what you want and insist upon getting exactly that, with no substitutes. 

This point has two parts; Pray but not Beg and insist exact demand.

Pray but not beg, sounds like, we do not put down our self esteem when making any request. During the process of seeking help, do not knee down to beg, ask with pride. Nevertheless, I always beg for God's help. Haha. Who cares! I do not need any ego in front of my Abba Father :)
Insisting exact demand is valid when we know what we want. A very firm desire which is unchangeable over time and unshakable over influence of others. Once we know that demand is the best for us, how could we be satisfied with any substitute?
Again, knowing what we want in life is extremely important.

9. Recognize that life is an cruel taskmaster and that either you master it or it masters you. There is no half-way or compromising point. Never Accept from life anything you do not want. IF that which you do not want is temporarily forced upon you, you can refuse. In your own mind, to accept it and it will make way for the thing you do want.

Life is indeed about choices. Choice to be mastered or choice to master. If we didn't want to do any decision or action, we would be mastered by others. On the contrary, if we will to take charge of our lives, we can make a difference. Take myself as an example, I have graduated with good results, followed the norm to get a job and perhaps along this path, I will get incremental pay check. This typical life, I would say, is mastered by others. My bosses and the companies are deciding my future; I am not taking charge of my life. So I always have the ambition to start on my own and take back the decision making rights. Napoleon is right about "Accept it and it will make way for the thing you do want". Perhaps we can refer to law of attraction, power of subconscious mind and etc, I do believe if we desire something so desperately, we will take actions to acquire, achieve and accomplish it. 


10.  Lastly, remember that your dominating thoughts attract, through a definite law of nature, by the shortest and most convenient route, their physical counterpart, be careful what thoughts you dwell upon.

Have you ever experienced, you mind cannot control your thoughts? Simple example, you are sleeping in a dark + creepy room, a lot of scary imaginations and thoughts pop out, and you simply cannot stop them. Perhaps we should do some mind exercises to control our thoughts. One exercise I can think of is; be conscious on your thinking. Once some undesired thoughts come out, stop them immediately through your conscious mind. Soon, we can control our mind better and positive thoughts can emerge well. So our dominating thoughts attract their physical counterpart. As I share in previous point, the stronger the desire, the faster the actions taken, the earlier the physical fruits can be reaped.

Combining all ten in one, that would be:

Be definite in everything you do and never leave unfinished thoughts in the mind. From the habit of reaching definite decisions on all subjects.

All in all, in order to prevent drifting in life, we need a clear and precise direction. Whatever we are doing, they should contribute to our ultimate goals. Focus on what we want and eliminate unnecessary thoughts. Remember that we are in control of our mind. 


Let's work hard and smart towards our goals. All the best to everyone :)


Here is the link to the audio book (Outwitting the Devil): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lcfr6twjk-o&t=4227s

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Christmas Sharing #2 - James 3:9-10

"With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be."

James 3: 9-10 NIV

"Look at her, so ugly still dare to carry LV bag. The bag 100% is counterfeit!". "Go to hell, you stupid idiot". "He will never ever succeed in life, if he did, the Sun would rise from the west!".

These sentences are so common in our daily lives. Judging, accusing and cursing people are what we do best. It is so natural for us to say those words which can hurt and break others' hearts. Often we forget they are made in God's image as well. Cursing them is equivalent to humiliating God. The most interesting fact in James 3:9-10 is, we use the same tongue to praise our Lord. 

Personally, I used to indulge in gossiping about people. Whenever I detected some fresh news, my radar automatically activated its reception. Sometime I shared the gossip I have in order to exchange some other news. However at one point of time, I felt so guilty because I discovered my news were false after sharing with my friends. Gossiping is as bad as cursing because some time we don't even know whether what we share is true fact. Imagine, we praise God with our foul mouths, will God be pleased?

 Thus, we need to be conscious about the words coming our from our mouths. Our mouths are meant to communicate with one another and worship God. We cannot curse and praise God with the same mouth. It is easy to come out with this conclusion, however, it takes a lot of efforts and determination to eliminate our habit of judging, gossiping and cursing. I believe step by step, we can make a change. May God's strength and wisdom be with us. 


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Christmas Sharing #1 - 2 Corinthians 12:9

"But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

2 Corinthians 12:9

Verse of the day! 2 Corinthians 12:9. This carries an important lesson which impacts me a lot. We always boast about our strengths and glories during interview, chit chatting and writing. However, we (at least I) never thought of boasting about our weaknesses. God tells us that His power is made perfect in weakness. I strongly believe no one except Jesus is perfect, we all have different weaknesses. For example, I always have a serious problem of 3 minutes fever. I was so excited about selling phone casings on Carousell in May this year. Successful example of a friend doing this inspired me to venture in this business. Booking some stocks and listing the items on Carousell were fun and interesting at the beginning. 3 months down the road, I was bored with the tedious buy and sell process. The excitement was gone. Eventually, I put up my white flag and left my Carousell account aside. 

I seldom talked about this little business in front of my friends because it was a shame to me. This experience amplified my weakness. So instead of feeling shameful, I should humbly commit this weakness of mine to Lord Jesus. I believe as long as we willingly confess our weaknesses to God, He will hear our voices and lend a hand to us. Just like what 2 Corinthians 12:9 tells us; we should boast about our weaknesses and Christ's power may rest on us. With the wisdom and strength from God, we take actions and eliminate our weaknesses. As people know about our weaknesses and witness our changes, by then, we can be good testimonial of God and share this to encourage others. Every weakness we have is an opportunity for God to show His power in our lives.

Moreover, God teaches us the attitude of humble too. God loves humble people who are not arrogant and not boastful of themselves. Even we have great successful achievements in life, we should not boast about it. Praises from others' mouths are always better and truthful than coming from own mouth.

In this Christmas season, may we learn to be humble and boast our weaknesses instead of strengths. May God's power rest on those boast about weaknesses. Amen