Advice from Gary Brown

Change this blog from "What Athol Wrote" to "What Gary Wrote," at least for today, because today I post a few thoughts about life from my friend Gary Brown, the poet. (You can sample his work here, here and here.) The last year has been very hard for Gary, and knowing that, when his words arrived via email I thought . . . well, why not read it for yourself and post a comment to tell Gary what YOU think?

A Few Things To Keep In Mind

Be thankful. Rejoice frequently. Pray. Dance. Sing. Laugh often. Live creatively. Repeat.

Fall in love with forgiving others. Simply love them. All of them. Leave all that others think, say and do in God's hands (that's between God and them, whether they know it or not). They simply do not yet know the Truth and that's God's business. Pray for them, give any problems or issues to God immediately, leave them there and stay peacefully focused on your own mission. Keep the big vision handy and do not take this present life too seriously. Actively, tirelessly remember to intentionally give things to God to deal with and stop worrying about them. Stop. No, really... stop.

"Happiness" is based on fleeting circumstances and conditions while "joy" goes deep down to the bone of the soul and could not care less about your changing circumstances. Do not pursue happiness, rather let the gift of God's joy silently overtake you without you realizing it.

God is big, really, really big, bigger than your mistakes, bigger than your successes. Understand that in your pursuit of His will, you can never make a mistake so large that He is not big enough to deal with it, convert it into an unbelievably wonderful event or opportunity. Breathe. Stop giving yourself so much inappropriate responsibility which actually belongs to God. You cannot do His job better than He can, so stop trying. He loves you. He knows your heart. Placed in His hands, He either provides and protects perfectly for you or He is impotent and incapable of anything... you decide.

Do not think you might miss hearing God’s voice or will mistake what His will is for your life. He made you, therefore, He knows how to communicate with you better, faster and more effectively than anyone. In your heart-based pursuit of Him, He won't let you make a mistake that He cannot use to your benefit. He knows what you really need much more than you do... trust that. Relax, He will also not permit you to miss an opportunity or path He has for you. He can get your attention when He wants to.

Never be afraid or too embarrassed to let go of your current expectations... about anything, about everything. Stay available, pay attention and relax as you let Him run His show, through you. Regardless of how good or noble your ideas or plans may be, simply being good or altruistic or even their being helpful or beneficial to others does not make them the right thing for you to be doing at this specific time. Doing what is right is always better than doing what seems "good".

Remember that everything... the joyful and the sad, is simply a test of faith and faithfulness, the end of which can make us more fulfilled. So relax and rethink your "challenges and situations" as they come upon you. Forget the actual nature or degree of the circumstances that bring them on and rather, concentrate on your "reaction" to them. It's all about our response... not the issue or problem itself. God wants us to simply rely on Him more and not blindly run around reacting and trying to fix everything ourselves. Remember: The Problem Is Never The Problem. (It's a wonderful test for own benefit.)

Lastly, redefine what a lifestyle of patience might actually entail. Contemplate the ecstasy of being allowed to actually know God. Remember: Life accelerates the more you slow down... so "be still" and buckle up.

(Copyright (c) 2007 by Gary Brown. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.)

Posted byAthol Dickson at 5:38 AM  


Kay said... August 9, 2007 at 4:44 PM  

Beautiful. I tell myself this stuff all the time. It has more impact coming from someone else.
Thank you for sharing it.
I need it today.

gb said... August 10, 2007 at 11:24 PM  

Thank you for your thoughtful comments. I am glad that someone else might find some comfort in a few of the things I have come to realize.

God's blessings,

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