5 Changes You Can Make to Live a Safer Life

All of us want the security of having a safe environment not just for us, but for our families as well.

In today’s post, we’re going to be breaking down five ways that are going to ensure you provide a safer life for you and those around you.

1. Befriend Those You Want to Be Like

As Jim Rohn famously said, “You’re the average of the five people you spend most of your time with.” This is particularly true when you want to live a certain lifestyle. If you associate with the wrong types of people, they’ll rub off on you. Those people don’t have to be alcoholics and drug abusers. Let’s say you have a friend who arrives perpetually late to things. The more time you spend with that person, the higher the odds that you will start arriving late to things. If you want to be safe, surround yourself with like-minded people.

2. Avoid Alcohol

Alcohol can be dangerous for the user and their family. In fact, alcohol can often end up separating the family more often than bringing them together. As far as safety is concerned, alcohol can impair judgment and responsibility, increasing your chances of making a stupid decision that you’ll regret in the future. In the end, it’s best for you and your family if you just leave alcohol alone.

3. Invest in a Home Security System

This is definitely a significant step! A home security system ensures around-the-clock safety for you and your family. It allows you to know if any burglar is breaking into and entering your home, posing a threat to you and your loved ones. By installing this, an alarm monitoring company will be monitoring your house even when you’re not home. According to ADT, you can even monitor your security from a smartphone or tablet. Overall, your family and your home will have maximum protection from intruders.

4. Schedule Regular Check-Ups with Your Doctor

Regular check-ups to the doctor ensure that you are personally safe from any diseases or illnesses. Also, bring your family too if possible. This guarantees everyone is healthy, which results in a safer and happier household.

5. Invest in Yourself

Further education is always a good idea, especially when it comes to living a safe life. Find out further ways to provide safety and security for your family whether it be finances, relationships, health, happiness, etc.

By focusing on the above five steps, you can guarantee that you and your family live a pretty safe life.

Spirit Detox | Devotional

6-Day Spirit Detox | Day 2

When someone decides to detox, they are intentionally removing toxic substances from their bodies.

Our blood tells everything.  When we visit the doctor’s office, they draw blood to see if there are any contaminants. We are triune beings (spirit, soul, & body) and like our bodies, toxins get in and contaminate our spirit and soul.

During this message series, we are focusing on detoxing the three different parts of our being: our spirit, our soul, and our body.

We need the detox because all of us allow toxic substances into our lives, whether knowingly or unknowingly. This week we’re detoxing our spirit, which technically doesn’t “need” detox because it is the part of us that is like God.

Our spirit is already clean and righteous. But the enemy still attacks our spirit, especially in our mind – and our mind feeds our spirit. Three things we must starve so that our spirit can thrive are doubt, negativity, and sin.

Today’s Reading: 2 Corinthians 10:1-6; Ephesians 6:10-20

Today’s Question: What are some of the causes of toxic thoughts in your life?

2 Corinthians 10 tells us, the battle against our toxic thoughts is like none other. It is not a physical battle, but rather it is a spiritual battle that requires God’s help in fighting.

Spirit Detox | Devotional

6-Day Spirit Detox | Day 1 of 6

Sometimes, we need to hit the spiritual reset button.

In a world where we are bombarded every day by messages of doubt, negativity, and sin, it is important for us to cleanse ourselves from things that contaminate our bodies and spirits so that we can grow in our relationship with God.  Why?

Our thoughts matter so much.

Our thoughts matter because what you think determines what you become.

Unfortunately, most of us tend to be held captive by toxic thoughts, rather than focusing our thoughts on God’s truth. For the next six days, I’m encouraging you to read from God’s Word about the dangers of toxic thoughts and how you can replace them with God’s truth.

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 4:1-27

Today’s Question: How have your toxic thoughts negatively affected your life and relationships?

You’re invited to celebrate with us this Easter at the Mars Hill Baptist Church of Chicago.

No matter your background, you will find a warm welcome, uplifting music, children and youth activities, and a clear, relevant message. Watch this quick video to learn about what we have planned for you this Easter.

When you’re finished watching the video, click THIS LINK to win a $100 gift card (who says Christmas can’t come early).

New series beginning this Easter

 

You haven’t finished your life story. What will you do with the blank pages? The choices you make today will lead you one way or another—but when you know who to trust, you’ll always be headed in the right Direction. In this series, you will discover how to See It. Say It. Seize It.

Never Again Return to What Hasn’t Worked

Never Go Back: 10 Things You'll Never Do Again [BOOK REVIEW]

Depending on who you ask, success looks different and has many definitions.

Although some define it differently, successful people have common trains. According to Dr. Henry Cloud, author of Never Go Back: 10 Things You’ll Never Do Again,

Successful people have certain realizations, or awakenings, that change the course of their lives forever in a positive way. These realizations are essential to a good life and are both scientifically and spiritually backed.

He describes ten of those awakenings in Never Go Back: 10 Things You’ll Never Do Again. The first awakening, Never Again Return to What Hasen’t Worked hit me like a ton of bricks.

rp_image-1024x591.jpeg

Never Again Return to What Hasn’t Worked

Make sure that if you ‘go back’ [to an old relationship, an old job, an old way of thinking] you’re not going back to the same thing . . . Remember there’s a reason it didn’t work. If you’re going back make very, very sure that reason is no longer there. . . Ask these questions: Am I different in some way that would make this work? Is the other person different in some way that would make this work? Is the situation fundamentally different in some way that would make this work? (pp. 17-18).

Everyone makes mistakes, even the most successful people out there. But, what successful people do better than others is recognize the patterns that are causing those mistakes and never repeat them again. In short, they learn from pain—their own and the pain of others.

I once heard someone say,

A good thing to remember is this: pain is unavoidable, but repeating the same pain twice, when we could choose to learn and do something different, is certainly avoidable.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, do you agree or disagree?

What To Do When Facing Dark Days and Sleepless Nights

What happens when you combine trust, faith, and hope?  They produce grit.

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, grit in the context of behavior is defined as “firmness of character; indomitable spirit.”

In light of the recent deaths of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, and five Dallas Police Officers, I decided to tweak this definition to be the ability to keep going despite setbacks, even when your efforts are not rewarded.  Grit is what you need when facing dark days and sleepless nights.

Grit (1)

The Dark Side of Success

Beware of the Undisciplined Pursuit of More

There’s a dark side of success and many don’t like talking about it.

It can leave you feeling empty.  If you’re not careful, it can lure you into a false mindset that says, “since I’m so awesome, I can do anything.” The more successful you are, the more opportunities you’ll pursue. This mindset leads you down the path towards “the Undisciplined Pursuit of More,” according to Jim Collins.


The Undisciplined Pursuit of More

Past success lures you into pursuing “more ventures, more opportunities, more acclaim, and more of whatever you see as success,” says author Jim Collins. We behave as if we’re King Midas and believe everything we touch turns into gold. In turn, we lose sight of what we truly value and soon lose passion for these pursuits. It happened to King Solomon and it can happen to you too.

It’s What You Don’t See That Matters Most

3 Essential Traits Effective Leaders Possess

We’re all living and working in an increasingly fast-paced and ever-changing world.

Succeeding and excelling in today’s world requires you to consider certain traits to be effective. In order to thrive in a fast-changing world, effective leaders make and implement decisions, possess agility, and include others in decision-making. Regardless of their respective industry, effective leaders make decisions and implement strategies to implement their decision.

Youth Decision Making Concept, Feet in Red Sneakers from Above Standing at Ground with Decisons Title Printed, Top View

Making and Implementing Decisions

The critical task of leadership is making decisions.  Unfortunately, there’s no way to know the outcome of the decisions we make. Effective Leaders must decide where they’re going and how to get there.

Deciding where to go could be considered the vision. Having the plan to get there is the strategy. Once a leader decides where they’re going and how to get there the next critical task of leadership is implementation.

Ask yourself: What decision am I making and what’s my strategy to implement it?

Pivot: How One Simple Word Can Change Your Life

Starting something new is much easier than transitioning something established.

Currently, I serve as lead pastor of the Mars Hill Baptist Church of Chicago. I succeeded my father, the late Rev. Dr. Clarence E. Stowers, Sr. who served for thirty-six years. The church I inherited was a traditional African American Baptist Church rich with tradition.

After five years of praying, meeting, teaching, leading, and building supportive teams, we transitioned to a contemporary church. During the process, I almost quit, but decided to pivot and stick it out. It was the best decision of my life. In life, you’ll eventually come to a crossroad. When it happens, you must decide if you’ll stick with it, quit, or pivot. How do you know which choice is best? I chose to pivot.

In life, you’ll eventually come to a crossroad. When it happens, you must decide if you’ll stick with it, quit, or pivot. How do you know which choice is best? I chose to pivot.

Top View of Business Shoes on the floor with the text: New Life - Old Life

So What Does it Mean to Pivot

I love sports, and when I hear the word pivot, immediately basketball comes to mind. When basketball players stop dribbling the ball, they must decide which foot is their pivot foot. Upon deciding, they can’t switch feet. Pivoting is the term used to define both the act of keeping one foot in place while moving the other and the actual foot which remains on the ground.

Keeping one foot in place is necessary when a player stops dribbling the ball but wishes to reposition himself for a pass or shot. A player may rotate and move around as long as one foot remains in place, on the floor. The foot chosen is known as the “pivot”, or “pivot foot”, and if it comes off the ground, or otherwise shifts position away from its original spot on the floor, a travelling violation will be called.