Sunday, December 5, 2010

Who's serving who?

I wake in the morning and freshen up for the day... When I have my children with me, I wake them up, and get them going and get them off to school. Other than when the kids are with me? It's quiet... I like the silence of the day (or night). Time and space to read, write, and think...

I have recently however, had a dear friend (and his 4 kids) move in with me due to extenuating circumstances. Its only for a short time as the older of the kids are heading out to serve LDS missions soon, and the Father (my friend) will also be leaving. They have only been with me for a few months now. They are respectful of my home, and have been a joy to have around.

As we gathered today to eat lunch... Two Dads, and kids surrounding the table, it hit me that in less than 30 days...they will all be gone. My home will once again be empty and silent. I admit that I have grown accustomed to having my good friend near. We share ideals and ideas, as we both are learning to quiet the storms that arise from within. To live peacefully in a world with so many things that we could worry about, yet we are both seeing that it's better to let go of the past, not assume the future, but live today, and praise God for the gift that today truly is! We work our own business ventures, raise and counsel our children. We work hard and long on that which to us matters, and we hang and shoot a game of pool when time permits. He has been a wonderful friend. But once again... soon to be gone for a long season ahead. I know that he is grateful for me sharing my home, and he and his family show their gratitude in word and deed... Yet what they do not see is how much I have been the receiver and NOT the giver. They have allowed me to be a part in their loves and contribute. Who benefits more...the giver or the receiver? Giving and receiving are one in the same. Having the powerful spirits of two young men preparing to depart on full time missions, where they will be eating, sleeping, and breathing the gospel of Jesus Christ. What a spirit they bring with them, as they have been here. My son and daughter have been around that and have notably recognized their powerful influence. This family has given me the opportunity to serve and give, they have taught me and my children to believe in and chase dreams. They have shown humility and honor as they have turned to God for answers and guidance. They have been here without any expectations or assumptions... Only positive gratitude and love (which actually makes me want to give more and more).
My heart is saddened as I see them beginning to depart and leave. Yet my heart is also full because I have been given the chance to love and share, more than before. How undeserving I feel when they thank me... It is I that thank them for allowing me to take part in their lives in such a small and tiny way. Small as my contribution has been, I have benefited the most in a feeling of purpose and love. I have been able to see that love is alive and real when we serve and give. How and why do I so easily forget the promise from The Lord. "For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; and whosoever will lose his life for My sake shall find it." (Matthew 16:25)
They have reminded me that this life is about helping each other get to the other side. May we all be less selfish, and more selfless... and strive to be "in the service of our fellow men, as we are only in the service of our God." How sweet is the joy that comes from such...
So I wanted to look around and share a bit... :)

I'll miss you guys so much... More than you'll know!!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Are we telling stories?

I am wrestling with something in my life right now...

Acknowledge what IS and Adjust if needed... As easy as that sounds, it seems too seldom be the common practice. Nope...instead, we quickly become authors and tell ourselves stories to solidify and validate our own position... Are these stories told from a logical and unbiased position? Quite doubtful that they are, since it's only natural to narrate a story from a "pro-self" position. Filled with validations, justifications, filters from one's own past, and most of all...filled with our own EGO. How hard do we all try, in the end, to tell ourselves that we are "right"? There are so many situations in which we tend to tell these stories. Maybe it's something someone did or said to you that caused you to feel unloved or even caused you pain? I was reading in a book called "A New Earth" (by Eckhart Tolle) about the word "grievance"... It's a strong negative emotion connected to an event in the past that is being kept alive by compulsive thinking. One strong grievance is enough to contaminate even your perception of other areas of your life, and (worse) keep you in the grips of YOUR OWN EGO! "The past (itself) has no power to stop you from being present now. Only YOUR grievance about the past can do that. And what is a grievance? The baggage of old thoughts and emotions"...

CARRYING THE PAST
The inability or rather unwillingness of the human mind to let go of the past is beautifully illustrated in the story of two Zen monks, Tanzan and
Ekido, who were walking along a country road that had become extremely muddy after heavy rains. Near a village, they came upon a young woman who was trying to cross the road, but the mud was so deep it would have ruined the silk kimono she was wearing. Tanzan at once picked her up and carried her to the other side.
The monks walked on in silence. Five hours later, as they were approaching the lodging temple, Ekido couldn't restrain himself any longer. “Why did you carry that girl across the road?” he asked. “We monks are not supposed to do things like that.”
“I put the girl down hours ago,” said Tanzan. “Are you still carrying
her?”
(Extracted from A New Earth... Eckhart Tolle)

Let it go! Stop carrying unneeded baggage...blaming and complaining..."poor me". "I was wronged in this way or that way". "I am/was right, and you are/were wrong". There is nothing that strengthens the ego more than "being right". Being right, therefore making someone or something else wrong. You need to make others wrong on order to get a stronger sense of who you are. Being "right", is placing you in a position of imagined moral superiority in relation to the person or situation being judged. It is in that sense of superiority that the ego loves to exist and thrive.

What's the solution..? Be more conscious of the ego. It lives only if we feed it and allow it to live. We must allow others to live,..even if it's in a different way than we would live. Forgive if you were wronged. Yet don't try to just "forgive"... It doesn't work! Forgiveness happens naturally when you see that 'not forgiving' is simply your egos' effort to live. Consciously become aware of your ego and what it feeds on, and forgiveness (therefore) happens. You no longer NEED to feel "right" or superior to others. We are all of the same worth in God's eyes. Allow others to live and learn and wish them hope and goodness. Sometimes things hurt, but how much more we continue to hurt ourselves ten fold.... by retelling the story called "I'm right, and you're wrong"...
End that story...! For the ego is the only author.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Old Friends... Renewed Perspective

A missionary off the coast of northern Africa, on a little island that is still considered Portuguese territory called Madeira... once wrote:
"To register one's spiritual impressions and experiences in books and records, while 'Yet still in the spirit', is not to deny the reminding influence of the Holy Spirit, but to ENHANCE it."
He wrote that in the front cover of a book that he left with me, as he departed his mission, to go home. I have done just what he said and recorded my life in books and journals... My life has been blessed because of it, and now my kids are doing the same. Elder John P. McLay wrote that... He taught me so much, in such a short amount of time... I was 19 years old at the time... 16 years ago.
Today, I had the wonderful opportunity to see him once again and meet his sweet wife (Brooke), and feel closer to God simply by being in his presence. This is a man, that has remained constant in his course, and kept the faith. He is an example to us all of what it means to know and serve the Lord.
It's interesting to reflect on the times that he and I shared as we walked the streets of that little island town called Funchal... We read together, prayed together, and taught the gospel of Jesus together. A time when all there was to do is get lost in the service of others and forget all that was part of "the self". How easily I forget that wonderful promise that when we lose our lives in the service of other, it is there that we find true life and happiness. How easily I am beset with the pride of self, and give way to selfish desires. How much I get in my own way of really living happily as I seem to chaise the superficial.
When you are around someone that is so filled with love and the light of The Lord, it has such an undeniable impact. It's not a feeling of "I'm no good" or "Look how flawed I am"... NO!! People that have that light don't make us feel less of a person at all. They make us feel inspired and so loved, that we just want to be and do better. To reach higher and be stronger in every part of our lives. I have only met a few people that have that type of an impact. John McLay is one of them. When one walks with The Master every day, they begin to emulate the very love and spirit of their Master. Loved, accepted, and understood... Don't we all want to feel those feelings? When I feel that way, I seem to want to give that person everything that I have, and everything that I am. On the other hand... when people make me feel flawed, broken, and unforgivable..? I repel that person, and withhold my very soul from them.
Isn't that what the Atonement is all about? Acceptance... The acceptance of where someone is (flaws and all), never judging, but lifting them to higher ground.

Makes me think about how I want to make others feel when they are around me... Accepted and loved... no matter what. I want to be like John McLay... I really have been so blessed lately with such positive people that have come into my life lately. For this.. I am grateful!
Thank you John, for the reminding influence of your spirit, that make me want to reach higher! I mean it.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I create my life...

I create my life, and the things that happen in my life are a direct result of what I put out there into the Universe. To sit and blame is to avoid responsibility of ones own actions. It's also displays a clear lack of someone's ability to overcome conflict peacefully. People that look at a situation, and don't see that they had something to do with what happened TO THEM...well that's just blind, and immature.
In business... the person that blames everyone else for their lack. It's the governments' fault, or President so an so's fault. They complain and then get mad, and blame everyone else... Their boss is a jerk, they never get brakes, it's ALWAYS someone else's fault!!
Similar in relationships, people blame and complain...and literally feel like they themselves have nothing to do with it.
FEAR is usually the cause of it all. Its scary to have to look at one's SELF and explore for answers. People around us would rather build their own case, point fingers with that UGLY finger of blame, and reenforce that wall that is put up so that nobody can really see in. Their idea of conflict resolution is... "fire those around you, and just fill that space with something or someone else that complies with my simple and shallow perception". Heaven forbid they actually look inside themselves, understanding themselves, analyze how their very situation has everything to do with their OWN actions, and learn how to correct it, and move forward. Nope... They would rather avoid self introspection, and blame instead... "It's their fault for how I feel! It's someone els's fault as to why I'm without financial stability. It's so and so's fault why I'm hurting...it's because they didn't love me enough".
All of these ways of thinking are so prevalent in the world today. In my speaking career, I speak to those that come to my conferences and just complain about how they were wronged in one way or another. All of them feeling a sense of entitlement, that they are owed something. It's ugly to witness!! I admit that it makes me work harder (in my presentations) so that hopefully they will see that there are ways to produce a different outcome, and be in a better place, but it requires work and effort, and one must stop blaming others.
I've seen this in relationships too. That sense of gratitude between two people, quickly turns to a sense of entitlement. Like they are owed something because they showed prior love or kindness in one way or another. The constant blaming gets nowhere! Gratitude quickly turns to entitlement and expectations. When expectations aren't met, they are hurt beyond belief, and now owed. Thus the ledger is born. The ledger is the list of things they did for you (compared to the wrongs that you have done) that they throw at you every time you may step out of line. "I did this, this, and that for you...so you owe me". That is no way to live...to constantly have the ledger thrown at you. We all have a part in what happens us!!!!! It's just a cowards' game to jump to conclusions, build a case with false and unsubstantiated whispers, and not look at themselves in the mirror, and just blame. Then to go to the next worse level, and start with name calling...? Wow, that is one of the biggest displays of the fact that most people never get out of the 6th grade emotionally. They would rather talk crap, gossip (and believe the gossip), and point their fingers and blame blame blame. Avoiding any responsibility of their own in what is happening TO THEM!!! I know how ridiculous that sounds. The thought that one has nothing to do with the pain and hurt that they themselves feel.

We must all take a step back and personally take an inventory of our OWN lives, and things we do and think, that ultimately contribute to what continues to happen to US. Accept and forgive where needed, and emerge with new resolve to remember that WE CREATE OUR LIVES. Accept the responsibility, and not blame others for our own pain, lack of money, lack of love, or lack of anything. We live once, and I'm grateful for people that have come into my life lately that are positive owners of their own lives. They do not hand me their emotional bill to pay. They are willing to pay their own, as i pay mine. :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Simplify Simplify Simplify

There are times when I have felt lost and out of balance in my life. Confused and unclear... In my upbringing I was always taught that when we are feeling lost, we must (in my Mothers words)..."Return to basics". There are basic thoughts, rituals, books, or even places that make us feel safe, where we go to center ourselves...and return to basics. The basics... Peace of mind, spiritual clarity, my children and those I love, basic financial needs, and a plan to move forward to where I wish to be. Taking an inventory of the things in which I involve myself, the people in my life, and even the things I spend my money on... Some of them, I recognize, just aren't needed. Let them go. How much of our time, energy, and effort are spent on things that keep us bound? Debt, for example, is something most people serve their entire lives. The newest car, and then to trade it in 2-3 years later, roll the debt and continue to work to service debt, and never allow themselves to rest. This is an example of what needs to be analyzed, weighed, and simplified. There are other things to that cause havoc in our lives, that we really just do not need. Sometimes it's people, work, things, or even ways of thought... Some of them we just don't need. As far as "things" are concerned...? Own the things you have, if your don't have the money to buy it...don't get it. There is no sense in becoming a slave to "THINGS"... I want to be free to serve those I love, instead of things I really don't even own. As my younger brother says..."Buy experiences, instead of buying crap". Experiences create memories... I like that!!

Anyhow, my rambling thought this morning have taken me to the point of analyzing what I spend my time doing, where I spend my money, and what do I really need. I wish to focus on things that matter, and simplify!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

What a week!!!

What an amazing week! I have spend the week on vacation with my kids, and how lucky I feel that I have such great kids! The beauty that is seen in the wonder in their eyes...as they explore and learn. Something I've always loved to watch... It's in their eyes.
My son is such a respectful sensative little stud! How blessed I am to have him as an example to me. He is always so grateful and quiet, yet almost as big of a dork as I am :)
My daughter is becoming an articulate, adventurous, young woman. So capable and equal to life as she sees it come her way. Always up for the challenge...if her brother can do it?...well she will get there too. Count on it!!
Feeling very blessed and grateful that I'm the Dad to such great kids that make my life have color and purpose!
Love you kidos!!!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

There are things unsaid, yet understood
There are times remembered that only you would know
There are lines from "that movie" which only make sense to me and YOU
and there are ways that I feel inside, that only you would understand
....at least i thought you did
Who knows anymore...?!?
Left to perception and hearsay
Which even I know aren't accurate

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

John Mayer, how do you know me?

When you're dreaming with a broken heart
Waking up is the hardest part.
Yo roll outta bed, and down on your knees
and for a moment you can hardly breathe...
Wondering "Was she really here? Is she standing in my room"?
NO SHE'S NOT! CUZ SHE'S GONE.....

Friday, July 30, 2010

In Control...?

Control... Such an odd word that has both positive and negative connotations to it. The balance between the two is ever so slight and precise, and it think its easy to swing from wanting to "be in control"...yet without being "controlling". Sometimes it's hard to feel that balance. I have some things that are going on in my life right now, where I do not agree with them at all, yet as I analyze how much I should actively participate, and weather or not to get involved more than I am...borders that line of crossing from being in control...to being controlling. I admit that I FEEL like I want to intervene and do it "my way"...but then again, maybe I should allow things to play out and take their natural course and unfold on its own. I also admit that it frustrates me and even makes me withdraw with anger as I watch from afar...

So... I sit down and write, and my anger subsides as I plug in the headphones, and do my "zen thing". I guess as I get older, its getting more and more clear weather or not I should make a fuss over things, or just let them be. Discerning that which deserves my energy to change, and that which I should just accept. I know I can't control everything in my life, because there are moving parts and moving people in my life. Somethings are out of my control, and I don't want to control them all. People will be what they want, and do what they do... I guess in the end, I can only take charge of myself, and allow others to do as they wish.

From the book "Atlas Shrugged" I am reminded of the great Hank Reardon as he stated... "Somethings matter because I say they matter". Things outside what we actually value in our world...do they really matter?

Pick your battles...

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lets take this a bit further

I wrote this in a prior blog entry..."Change is constant, so we must learn to adapt and grow. We must allow the same for others in our lives... We must learn to "put away young boy ways". Some things however, are to be learned and retained and never compromised...like values, and character...but thats a whole other entry for another time."
I wish to expound on it at this time...

"Things to be learned and retained and never compromised... like values, and character". As we learn the way we want things to be, sometimes we allow our values and character to be compromised. How frustrated I get with myself when "I know better", yet still allow situations in the door to happen. Once the universe teaches a principle, soon thereafter comes the test of that very principle. Did you really learn, and not just mentally understand, the intended principle? A chance to pass the test, internalize new levels of living, and advance in life's lessons. We are tested all the time, and I think it's to see if we actually made the intended lesson a true part of our current makeup. It's one thing to recognize, yet another to now apply, and hold strong when the test comes our way again. If we don't learn, and give in to old habits, trust that the universe will bring that very same test our way again, as it tries to shape and mold us in ways that only can be done by The Devine. How much we get in our own ways of our own progress. Part of being human I suppose, and I thank God for second, third and the one thousandth chance I get, to learn and progress.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Love is....

Love is... "The WILL to extend one's self for the purpose of nurturing one's own, or another's, spiritual growth"
: M. Scott Peck M.D.
I like that! I read that the other day, and it has stuck with me for a while. The "WILL" speaks of one's intent. If one has WILL, it doesn't always mean they will be 100% (for nobody is perfect), but they will show actions and clear intent to make a priority and "extend one's self"... Sacrificing and giving up of one's self. At times putting aside one's own needs and desired (not entirely!). All for the purpose of nurturing one's own (love and respect of one's self is necessary in order to love others fully)... or another's spiritual growth. Regardless if others are serving our purposes or not!! Often times, love and acceptance is ONLY shown to another, IF they are serving our purposes and "doing it our way". Is that love? We are taught that we should love ALL mankind. Acceptance, tolerance, and love. Even when and if others are not doing things that serve us. That doesn't mean we are to allow ourselves to be walked on or abused, yet maintaining a feeling of peace and love towards others, and letting go of past mistakes, and how others wronged us...that's part of loving in this life. Even allowing others to move on from their mistakes, is what we must all learn to do. So often couples stack up this ledger and list of past mistakes and "things you did to hurt me"... and when it's most convenient in a fight or to gain leverage, one will throw the list of wrong doings at the other. Holding them in that light of mistakes forever. Allowing ourselves and others to make mistakes, recognize them, learn from them, and leave them behind, and spiritually grow...? (not always easy to do)... but necessary, if we really love someone, or love ourselves, or even love at all!
Let go of mistakes, and learn to see and even remember the good in ourselves, others, and in the world around us. :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Change

Listening to the John Cougar Mellencamp this morning...
"When I was a young boy, said put away those young boy ways"... (good song)! It made me think of life, as we all "put away those young boy ways", and evolve into who we are at this moment, and yet we are still changing to who we'll be tomorrow. To me, to "put away" doesn't necessarily mean it must be ignored or forgotten (unless its a character flaw, that we must see and change),... but "Put away" to me means several things. One would be to save and cherish memories from our past. I often imagine creating rooms in my heart and mind, and to fill them with memories of people and places. These rooms are open to me to visit as I desire, and stay for as long as I wish. To remember, honor (if you wish), and occasionally learn from visiting those rooms that I have inside me. Another meaning of "put away those young boy ways"...would be to learn to grow as I grow in life. To act my age, and be where I AM in life, and participate in things "of my age". It's easy to associate habits with those of a younger age. For example, when a boy is 5 years old, he plays with trucks and make noises... When he's 12 and playing basketball with his buddies, it probably wouldn't go over very well, if he dropped down on the ground and began playing with trucks and making noises, it would be counted as "out of place". Being a teenager, the boy does "teenage" things. However, as we reach into our thirties and forties, when we hear "put away those young boy ways", we associate that with putting away things we did when we were teenagers. But, for me, some of the things I did 2-3 years ago, need to be put away as well. As we get older, we must continually learn that change is going to happen throughout our entire lives.

Growing up and making transitions and changes in life are inevitable... Often times these transition periods can be feared and in the end, counted as a crisis, that we simply are not able to deal with well. Depression hits, and we tend to find ourselves wondering why things can't just be the way they used to be. We fail to realize that change is GOING to happen, and we can either grow and learn, or hang onto old ways of looking at things, and be the victim of what has always been a constant in life....change!
What makes these transitions pleasant, or what makes them to be counted as a crisis in our lives, is determined by our ability and willingness to give up old habits and ways of doing things, for the new.
When we are unwilling or unable to suffer the pain of giving up the outgrown, we tend to cling to our old patterns. Thus failing to truly grow up and experience the joyful sense of rebirth that accompanies successful transition into greater maturity. (Adapted from the book "The Road Less Traveled")

Often times, when change is presented, we resist it. Even when we know its what needs to happen. We resist because the old life is familiar and predictable, as we knew it. When we resist change, we try to stop it. We eventually see that it can not be stopped, we then tend to slip into forms of depression and sadness... "Why can't things be the way they were"? We fail to understand and remember, that things will never remain and "be the way they were"...forever. THEY CAN'T! It's impossible. Time and life march on. As our understanding evolves, so must our actions. As our actions evolve, in turn the world around us will indeed evolve as well. Some times we cause the evolution, and sometimes external circumstances are the cause... Either way, we must learn to make transitions.

We all continue down the path of our lives, constantly learning to give up the old, and "put away those young boy ways", and make room for the new. New ways of thought, new habits, and sometimes new individuals. I'm not just referring to people that come into our lives and then leave. Yet, often times those are some of the hardest transitions to make. The acceptance of someone else into our lives, experiencing the joy of their presence, and then having to let them go their way... That is not an easy thing to do. Yet thankfully, some people become a permanent part in our lives, but we must still learn to evolve and let go of old ways of doing things, old thoughts and feelings, and be open to growth and change as we accept new ways of life and motion. Even people that are permanent parts of our lives will evolve, so we must allow that and be open to it. Constantly giving up the old, for the new. "Go with the flow" is always thought of as just being ok with whatever comes up, no matter what. I don't entirely subscribe to that way of thinking. I feel we can control our direction and navigate our lives toward a specific end. I say "go with the flow" yet do it with direction and purpose! Create a goal, create a plan, and execute it with purpose. Along the way, BE OPEN to adaptation of results. Who knows....?? The universe, in the end, might show you an even greater outcome than you ever dreamed possible. Which I have found is oftentimes the case. The Lord is able to make more out us, than we can even imagine.

Change is constant, so we must learn to adapt and grow. We must allow the same for others in our lives... We must learn to "put away young boy ways". Some things however, are to be learned and retained and never compromised...like values, and character...but thats a whole other entry for another time.
Life changes, and as our we learn better tools to better deal with life, we must occasionally let go of old ways of thinking, old patterns, and habits that don't serve... and make room for better ways of living, loving, and growing. As we navigate through life, we should include the Lord as our partner... So we change to be and do, what he would desire.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Learning as I go

It's early in the morning. Not much of a sleeper lately and I've been up reading. Thoughts running through my mind, as I contemplate the last 2-3 years in my life. I've caused a lot of pain in this world, and it's weighing on me. Sometimes, one must look behind themselves, and see the path that has been left. Is it a path of creating and the building up of life?...or have they left a wake of destruction and grief...heartache and pain? Without being dramatic, I can honestly say that I see both as I look behind me. Sometimes I focus on the pretty pictures that I (along with others) have painted in my past... The wonderful memories and experiences that are now counted as "the good times". As I look at the path behind me though, I unfortunately see the destruction and pain that I have caused too. As I take an inventory and try to learn from past mistakes, I am trying to look at the root of the actions that ended up causing hurt in the world...and even in the hearts of those I love and who love(d) me. The root of it all... was selfish dishonesty. I was a liar! Lying to myself, and lying to others. However, the evil spells of deception will eventually be corrected by the universe itself... :( Over the course of what I call "my awakening" (even wrote a song around it), I have been slowly shown what I have done, what I've done to myself, and what I've done to others... Life has a way of being a mirror, and revealing more of YOU to yourself, through experiences and people around us. Weather or not you choose to look at YOU, or blame others... becomes the next part. This morning I look inward, I choose to see ME, for what I am, and accept what I've done... OWN IT! Correct it, and learn from it... It's more than just saying "yep, I was wrong"... It goes deeper than that. One must get to the root of it all, to change the eventual fruit that is born. I'm learning that the roots are our thoughts...
Thoughts lead emotions; Emotions cause Actions; Actions makeup our lives.
Simple and not in anyway "groundbreaking"...yet must it be more complicated than that? Our emotions are what we notice and see most... "I'm angry, sad, or happy". That is what our emotional body is showing us, so "how I feel right now" is what is most prevalent and noticeable... Yet most of us don't take a deeper look at the roots, which are our thoughts. Emotions can be controlled through the thoughts that we choose to entertain. Our emotions can be signs that we are not being aware of our thoughts. If we "feel" a way we don't want to, then it could be taken as a warning (if we are consciously aware) that we are not controlling our thoughts enough. To be able to control the emotional body from within, instead of only reacting to external circumstances...? Is that really possible? Can we ever truly be impervious to outside influence. Maybe... But I DO wish to have more control over the way I feel this morning. I feel sorrow and regret as I recognize pain that I have caused, and I recognize that. Not sorry for me; yet sorry for those I've truly hurt. Part of change is becoming aware... not easy to have mornings like this where I am faced with decisions I've made... Not all bad, in fact some decisions I've made I am quite proud of. Yet the ones I'm NOT proud of..? Those are the ones I address this morning.
Maybe I'm writing this to just help myself mentally layout a game plan, so I don't have to feel this way anymore. Even still... I see what I've caused, I accept it, and ask forgiveness.
It could have been avoided, with better thoughts and controlled emotions... I am better for having passed through this, yet I regret that my betterment, had to come at the expense of people that I love. God, please mend what I have torn...!!!
Please forgive me...
I guess it's all part of this mortal journey of "Self Mastery"...
Self Mastery begins with thoughts. Thoughts ultimately create our lives.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Hard Things

As I think about the days events, and the hard things I am dealing with... I think about doing "Hard Things"...

A few weeks ago on a Saturday, I woke up early to see my older brother pass by as he was running a marathon. As he passed by he was hurting and about 20 miles into it. I sat there watching my bro, as he was doing a hard thing...on purpose. He ached and winced as he kept going, and kept running. All for the purpose of "doing it", and facing himself. It is self against self, when you run a marathon, it is a question of "keeping going", and not giving up. Giving up is not an option... That is the expected attitude as one takes on a task like that.

Is the rest of life always that simple? Is there a time when switching directions and changing course is "the better thing to do". Or should we always stay "THE COURSE", and to give up is not an option. I think when it comes to personal convictions, principles, and values... YES!!... stay the course and do your best. If you get off course, get back on course, and stick to it. Other areas of life I question...

I guess we must all decide what path we wish to take. Which is not always easy, when one is lost and confused. I admit that I have hurt (not on purpose) people by not being clear and decisive. I have learned much by my mistakes and flaws. I was reading the other day and I'll quote and paraphrase some of it…

"Sometimes in life you meet and even love someone that shows you things you never would have otherwise learned… They in ways are a mirror, the person who shows you everything that's holding you back (your own flaws, faults, and all), the person who brings you to your own attention of YOU, so you can change your life. THIS SOMEONE IS PROBABLY THE MOST IMPORTANT PERSON YOU'LL EVER MEET, because they tear down your walls, and smack you awake... They come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, then they leave. And thank God that they came... Their purpose was to shake you up, drive you to new levels of discovery, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart so wide open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life! Then introduce you to The Divine, and allow God to take over from there".


This is a hard thing to face, and sometimes I feel like i can't even go on... and I don't even want to anymore. I personally feel (a lot of times) like NOT going on unless it's with the one or those I love... It seems too empty and without purpose.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Chillin with my little one...

Woke up this morning an watched the world cup soccer match between USA and Algeria. Donavan scoring the only goal in the last minute of play!!!
"Goooooooaaaaaaal"!!!!!!

So sweet to watch our team win, and make it to the final 16 teams... GO USA!!
Avery and I are just hanging out today, and enjoying being lazy... She wants to write something too:

Avery: Hi im Avery... Matthews daughter. My favorite colors are light Pink, baby blue,and lime green. I am 9 and a half years old. I love to dance, sing, and cook. My daddy thinks Im a good cook. If you where wondering what kind of dance I do i will tell you, I do ballet,ballroom, Jazz, and gymnastics. xoxoxoxoxo Byyyyyyyyyyyyyye.

A kiss from Avery on a victorious morning for the USA! Summer is officially here, and kidos make it so much fun!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day

To my Father, and the men in my life, that took it upon themselves to go out of their way on my behalf as I grew up... There were even small things that were done that I remember as a young man. You remembered my birthdays,... you stepped in when I needed it and bailed me out so many times. You put me on a mission, and encouraged me with your prayers and letters. You taught me to fight and focus on that which I want. You taught me with your good and bad examples, that in the end, teach how to...and how NOT to...in my life.
I write this and thank you for your hand in shaping me... I have much to learn to measure up to most of you, but I am trying. I am "willing" to try and try again, as we all journey in this thing called life.
I watched my brother and his wife today, as they prepare to welcome yet another child into the world. They are an example to me, in being grounded in what's really important. They are a team and truly are co-creators as they create and raise their young family...
I love my brothers, and they are great Dads.
Happy Fathers' Day to all reading, and to MY DAD!! God bless!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Recent Interview...

I just recently did a small interview that is somewhat hiding within this blog... I decided to bring it to the forefront so its a bit more visible, and invite readers to take a look.

Click Here to check it out :)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Home Sweet Home :)

It's Friday and I'm home home home... Love It!! :) So nice to just be home and do "home stuff"!!! World Cup soccer on TV (muted), music playing, got laundry in the works, and I'm making a sandwich with chips/salsa (favorite fresh salsa from Days market)!! Yum Yum!!
Love Being Home!!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

"In the end...Who cares...what does it matter"?

I watch and listen as people talk with friends and loved ones they've had for years. They will recount this or that experience and laugh, and even cry at the thought... yet those golden memories are now compounded and enhanced as they are shared and re-shared. I think of how those experiences, over the years of recalling and retelling, become the gems of life to be relived and retold with those we love. How rich our lives become as the experiences compound with time, and of course the new stories that are discovered... Only to be added into the mix of "remember that ONE time when we...." How special when one is able to have a loved one, with whom they can travel through life and share...
But how altogether more sad it is when people that are unable to share with each other anymore. Hurt and bitterness become the replacement of love.. causing distance and "protecting myself from hurt" become the focus. Walls are then built to cope, and then in the end, love was unable to prevail. Now, instead of "remember when we..."; it only becomes a distant faded past that is (on purpose) ignored...all in the name of moving on, and trying to forget. I say... WHY?!?!
Why do the memories created in love have to be spoiled because of current circumstance? They were once thoughts that filled us with love and a smile, and are they not still the same thoughts as they were before? Can't memories and feelings be allowed to stand as they were? Why can't I build a monument in your honor inside my heart? Why can't I allow those rooms of my soul to forever be occupied by you? When life and love is shared and created, why must I have to let it go, to create room for another? Hell no!! WHY?? I say keep it. All that was and is good, and fills you with love inside...KEEP!!!! God is expansive and forever and so is love. And so I choose to keep what is mine that I was given Min... People become bitter over time if love isn't allowed to prevail. God shows us and teaches us love, and we can either keep it so it lives inside us, or let it go... I want to keep it. Hoard it... and allow it to fill up my soul.
And so I therefore choose to keep you... As the part of me that you are....and always will be. It's NOT your choice!! It's mine!! Living and breathing memories, that will forever be with me. So when my mind decides to visit those rooms that have you in them, I'm going to let it explore all it wants to. Why not smile? "In the end...what does it matter"? Well, to me... it does. You see,... I have to live with me...and I don't want to live in torment or bitterness. I want love to live. It doesn't have to be stifled or ignored, it CAN live... I choose to let it BE!

So as the years pass, and as my mind tells me stories of "Remember when..." I will lovingly recall the stories that are told and retold of you! Thank you....Hi

Thursday, June 3, 2010

NFL Hall of Fame!

We took at bit to see the hall of fame yesterday... Canton, OH baby...
John Elway and The Broncos... Grew up in the Denver area, so I had to commemorate the Elway shrine... :)







Tuesday, June 1, 2010

"Fate rarely calls on us at a moment of our choosing"...
Optimus Prime (Haha)
I heard this the other day, and loved it... I ask myself... do I respond when fate comes knocking? I can say that I have responded at times, and at other times..., I haven't responded at all. I often wonder if that will bring sorrow and regret. Perhaps, but then the question is, how does one know when it's fate calling, or the meanderings of our own minds? Good question to ask, and even better... to find the answers to this one! :)

Monday, May 31, 2010

Rambling thoughts?...Maybe,.. but it's my blog and my place to share... :)

"You are, after all, what you think. Your emotions are the slaves to your thoughts, and you are a slave to your emotions"
:Elizabeth Gilbert

How true it is that we literally are what we think. As I travel on the emotional roller coaster that my life has become, it is comforting to know that I CAN control my emotions, and make choices which determine the outcome of my everyday life. It all starts on that which I choose to focus. That which receives energy...GROWS! I find it to be so difficult at times, to just let go of hurt and pain, and just allow myself to be ok. We tend to stick to that which we know and find familiar... Even if its misery, sorry, and chasing the circles of life.... Why do we do this? Perhaps because we become slaves to our emotions, which are governed by our thoughts, and we never get ahold of our thoughts as we should. I know I should adopt thoughts, and then habits, that allow me to live and feel happy. Lately, there is much that I question in myself. I spend a lot of time alone reading, meditating, and praying. I'm often criticized for it...being alone so much. Being still, listening,and learning is about "self-mastery (to me) and the dedicated effort to haul your attention away from your endless brooding over the past and your non-stop worrying about the future so that you can seek, instead, a place of eternal presence from which you may regard yourself and your surroundings with poise. Only from that point of even-mindedness"(Gilbert)... sound decisions are able to be made.

I have been reading a ton lately, and to those that know me... they know that I love to read and explore. I could be full of "it"...but I feel like I'm learning, and it's fun to share a few things...

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Is it possible to begin to feel... nothing? I've become so numb and empty, and it's been a difficult, and very odd week. Confussing time for me... Change is inevitable, and is always happening. I know that happyness and sorrow...coexist. But where does numb and empty fit in there? Does the emotional body ever just shutdown to disallow a total breakdown? I guess I don't know the answer to that... In an odd and somewhat dazed state...

"sufferring is the most powerful catalist for change, growth, and wisdom."

Hmmmm...but again, where does numb fit in...??
Whatever!!
Time for a change in paradigm...!! Badly needed!!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

In the great state of Georgia... Friendly folks, lush and green everywhere, and sunshine to boot! :-) No sleep last night, but it's going to be a great day? Thought of the day...?
"Everyone if us is always in a crisis, coming out of a crisis, or heading for a crisis. It's part of our exsistance here on earth. Stay your course, be faithful, and focus nonetheless...."
The Noticer

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Kids weekend...

Went out last night... Just me and the Kids. Shopping and then dinner at The Mayan. Cliff divers, fun food, and three dorks (that would be US). :) Love them to death, and looking forward to a fun summer!

photo.jpg
I just spend some time with an angel... She has green eyes, and she warms my heart...

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Road Trip... Grand Canyon

I had the last two weeks off, and just stayed home for most of it. During this last weekend, I went to the Grand Canyon. Very spontaneous road trip. I headed out on a drive and left Provo intending to "head out", but not knowing where... 11 hours later... I was standing on the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Just went alone, and stopped along the way at little shops, and lookout points...Lots of on my own time. Time to think and figure a few things out. There are things that happen in life, and you don't always know why. Hard to see through the darkness and uncertainty, and hard not to ask..."WHY"?
I guess not everything is supposed to make sense all the time. I guess thats what faith is... not being able to see everything, but trusting and believing. It was a good trip, and I took a stop on the way home in Lake Powell, where i stayed for a night, then came home...just in time for Mother's Day. Home to see my Mom, and siblings. Sometimes it's good to get away, and be alone with your thoughts. Refocus, recharge, and recenter a bit...then back to life,... pushing forward with renewed hope. The Grand Canyon, was a good place for me. Grateful for the trip!! Still very lost in some ways, but hopeful in others... :(

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Out in Edmonton, Alberta Canada for the week... Such a beautiful place. I have been reading a book series called "The Great and the Terrible"... If anyone gets a chance to read these book, I highly recommend it! The books make it well known that duality and opposing forces are prevalent in everything. Opposing sides between good and evil... The Yin and Yang... The questions it has caused me ask are: Do my thoughts and actions align with what I wish to create? Do I actively participate in the creation of what's good and wholesome? Do my actions align with where I'm headed? or do i just spend most of my time...burning time, and not progressing toward an overall goal or end. Do I "get by", or do I aggressively pursue a plan and overall purpose? Sometimes I ask myself these "gut check" questions, and am occasionally pleased with the answers, yet other time not as pleased... We all have time, and have various ways to contribute... Do we really contribute to life, or do we just try to "get ours"...? May we learn that there is purpose in giving away, and creating good!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Trust is a delicate thing. Pure at first until proven otherwise. Yet something that must be earned... yet something that can be dashed to pieces in an instant. Is it trust that builds? or one's expectations of others? Whats the difference between "I trusted you"...and.."I didn't expect that from you"?

Trust and expectations are close in relation to each other... I think that trust comes from knowing the person(s) at their core, and knowing their heart... When we place expectations on people, I think they are more about our own selves instead of the other person...
When someone has an expectation of another... and then suddenly they were wrong. Was it the persons' own personal expectation that caused the level of disappointment? or the fact that the person, on whom expectations were placed, isn't perfect and makes mistakes? Then the statements like "I trusted you" and "how could you"... No, this doesn't give license to intentionally hurt or not consider others in our actions... Broken expectations, and breaking trust are two different things. The question to ask is... Do I trust? or do I expect...because of my own perception..? False expectations are sure to eventually be upsetting... People are people, and aren't perfect. So what's the solution? Don't expect! Be grateful for that which is given without pretense or expectation. Just be grateful! In this light, we can avoid the disappointment that people aren't perfect... "I trust you" to me means, that I know you at your core, and love as you are...yet also understand that mistakes will be made, and won't judge you as a whole by your mistakes, but by what I know your heart to be...
We set ourselves up for disappointment when we place false expectations on others... This causes hurt and depression... Please know that "The seeds of depression and hurt can not take root in a grateful heart..!"

Friday, March 5, 2010

I've been in Portland, Oregon for the week. It so relaxing to drive the countryside up here and watch the mountains and the trees go by. So green and lush, and just a wonder to me, to see such beauty. Very thought provoking to me. I drove through a town called GrantsPass... Its a small little place you'll pass on your way to somewhere else. Not much there, but its where someone I love grew up. As I passed by, I couldn't help to think of the places they might have visited and wonder what and who they were when they lived there. Makes me smile :)

On the road, and ready to go home soon... yet what a beautiful part of the world,... and I'm grateful for having passed through...GrantsPass :)

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

THE GUARDIANS ... Our latest project that we are working on is called "The Guardians"... We have already produced the first opening scene of the film, and did so with a budget of $25,000. This is a film where it is shot 100% against a green screen, and everything is then done digitally in post production work. We wanted to produce only the opening of this film, to prove that we could operate in the green screen world, and to show what the films would look like, as we go about raising the money. It is similar in look to "300", or "Sin City"... Two films that did extremely well, and yet cost over $30 million to make. We will be able to produce our movie with the same look and feel for around $2.5 million. As soon as I am able, I will be posting and sharing the opening scene of this film on my site. Stay tuned! and add yourself to the guest list, and you'll be informed as to the latest on this project as it progresses.

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