Week 1MKMMA – Success

Success we all want it now and more of it!!!LJW profile pic

But what is it?

Is it that expensive car or house?

The time and energy to do what we want?

The adoration and esteem from your friends and family?

If we asked 100 people to define success no one would give the same answer.

Yet if we ask those 100 people to define failure they would all agree.

“Failure is the person’s inability to reach their goals in life, whatever they may be.”              ~Og Mandino

Today I begin a new chapter in my life.

Gone are the days of attempting to change my results with action. Oh you know what I mean the resolutions that we make to “fix” our results by implementing some massive action for instance;

Our body is carrying extra weight and we cannot even walk up the stairs without getting winded (the result) our action plan would be;

·         Get to the gym and find a instructor , workout, eat less, workout, do not eat that, workout, no not that either, oh yeah did I mention workout

Then our schedule changes, a travel week at work interferes, and those pesky holidays with family and friends. And we find ourselves in the same place after that great “massive action”

We all are always busy attempting to change. Something happens which we do not like and boom we try to change the effect with action. Only to find that we now need another set of actions for what that change has brought. Its own set of hardship and worry.

The analogy that comes to mind is the way western medicine “heals”.

It looks at the “effect” for instance high blood sugars (Diabetes) and says yep by golly we have a pharmaceutical for that. They take the massive action and prescribe a handful of pills you should take. Then consider you healed when the blood work comes back with blood sugars within the norms. Then the side effects of the drug you are taking rear its own set of ailments. The Dr look’s at the effect again and prescribes  another set of pharmaceutical for that.

I know I am being unfair to the caring and committed Doctors who are looking out for their patient’s best interests. Hopefully you get my point. Just to bring it to little more clarity…

 We need to look at things holistically.  I mean if you look at your fish in murky algae filled fishbowl and notice that she has something growing on her scales instead of running down to the local pet store and ask the expert for the cure-all to take the growth off the scales…..

Why not change the water!!!


In order to make any permanent change it is the cause which must be sought.

From Part one of our reading this week I found this statement

{…we must “be” before we can “do” and we can “do” only to the extent which we “are”, and what we “are” depends upon what we “think” }

We can control the cause by thinking. When we think we can see and feel a thing before it happens.

One of my thoughts for the week has been from Og Mandino’s book “The Greatest Salesman in the World” he states:Falure is sucess in progress

“Failure will never overtake you if your determination to succeed is strong enough,”

As I thought upon this my beliefs and feelings began to resound with another principle from Og’s book

‘The only difference between those who have failed and those who have succeeded lies in the difference of their habits.”  

Every conflict in life can be traced to the neglect, violation, or misapplication of one or more of the habits or character qualities that are the expression of perfect love. As we live we continue to surrender our goals and dreams to the years of theses habits and deeds that will rule our destiny and continue us on the road to failure. We have become their slaves.

As I close today let me share a story which came to mind to illustrate this principle.

Michelangelo was selected for the commission to paint the Sistine Chapel by Pope Julius II for the faces he would paint. Unlike many masters of the day whose paintings had faces all resembling each other; Angelo’s faces all had uniqueness to them. His secret lied in use of live models. He would scourer the countryside looking for the right face for the scene he envisioned.

When Michelangelo was visiting his mother (who became the face of Mary) in Bologna he found a baby whose facial air was of love. It was an expression that showed the kind of love that loves dearly, one not unlike the love of God for humankind. He found it in that small boy and made numerous sketches to aid him.

Many years later as Michelangelo was working on the Frescos at the Sistine Chapel he found himself in a fix. The vision he had seen for one of his character’s Judas, was eluding him. The look of a man who sold the Savior for thirty pieces of silver, one who could sit at the table and ask; “Is it I?” as Jesus told his disciples there was one among them who would betray him. Yes a man who had failed and did not understand why.

Michelangelo began to broaden his search into the streets of Rome and then suddenly, one day he found “Judas” in a small, dirty pub. His eyes had unnatural glitter, he was restless and he spat again and again. His body had already begun to sag with age. He spoke so fast that words seemed to fall out of his mouth like coins from a torn pocket. He had gone to Michelangelo to beg for a dinner, but had ended up sharing a bottle with him. When Angelo came out of the pub, he watched as the man asked someone else for two dinners.

Michelangelo asked the man to walk with him and took him to the chapel. Angelo told him what he wanted him to model for Judas. That would make the man immortal. Angelo lifted up the drapes to show him the walls and the ceiling. The man looked at everything with awe. He asked for a large sum of money in exchange for his consent. Angelo agreed to pay him. Then the man asked for an advance which Angelo gave. Angelo would call him to the Chapel for sittings and the man came regularly for a few days. One day, as the man was looking through some old sketches, he asked Angelo about the sketches of the child he had made in Bologna.

Michelangelo shared that he used to live in Bologna years ago and that those sketches where what he used to paint Jesus as a child. The man grew silent and then asked “Do you remember his name?” and Angelo did he said that the child’s name was Marsoleni. The man smiled as he rolled up his sleeve and showed him a name tattooed on his arm: Marsoleni. “I am the same Jesus, whom you are now painting as Judas.

So as a man thinks so is he. Let us seek for true wisdom and think on it. Let us be slaves to good habits.

“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. “For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace …” (Isaiah 55:10-12)

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