Forces That Form Your Future
Kevin Gerald


It's something we all have in common.  We're curious about the future, wondering, "What's going to happen in my life tomorrow, next week and next year?"  It's human nature to think, analyze, and study life. Sometimes the conclusion of that study is to worry about the future.  Today, there are so many negative messages bombarding us through the media.  People are worried about paying the mortgage, putting food on the table, whether or not they will have a job tomorrow, putting their children through college, retirement and caring for their families.  These are real concerns of life, but I'm convinced that simply worrying about what's going to happen tomorrow won't change the outcome.

Many people assume that the future is a mystery that we have little or no control over.  Some view themselves as victims of fate, dependent on the next lucky break.  They sing a powerless mantra of Qué Será, Será and plod through life.  The truth is that our greatest power is our power to choose.

When I was in my late 20s, I recognized how quickly life passes by.  I began giving serious thought to my future and I meditated on the ways that it was being formed.  As I began to study my life and the lives of successful people ahead of me, I discovered a number of forces at work that create the life we live.

Once I identify the forces that got me where I am, I can use those forces to my advantage to form my future. Here are a few that I found:

Force of Beliefs
Changing your belief system can change your life.  You can have something right in your heart, but wrong in your mind and no amount of good intentions or right motives will compensate for self-sabotaging beliefs.  Do you think you got the short end of the stick?  Do you believe you have insurmountable adversity?  Do you wonder whether you are a chump or a champ?  Do you believe that you are strong or weak?

- Remember this:  your most dominant beliefs always win.  So choose to believe good things about yourself and your future.

Force of Relationships
Going anywhere substantial is impossible alone.  For instance, when I board an airplane to take me to another city, there are teams of people who are involved in my journey.  There are members of the security team who keep me safe.  There are the pilots I trust to be competent and qualified to get me to my destination.  There are the flight attendants, who make the journey comfortable and more enjoyable.  This team helps me get to where I want to go.  My journey is better, safer and complete because of these people.  In the same way, your life's journey will involve people connections.

- Evaluate the relationships in your life, taking the initiative to surround yourself with people who will help you get to the places of your highest potential.

Force of Habits
Great people have great habits.  The power of our success or failure is in what we do repeatedly.  One does not become a coffee drinker because he or she drank one cup of coffee, or a smoker because he or she smoked one cigarette, or a generous person because of one gift given.  We improve our lives when we change our habits.  Don't put all your energy into getting rid of bad habits.  Instead, focus on developing good habits to replace the bad ones.  For example, giving compliments breaks the habit of being critical, eating healthy foods breaks the yearning for unhealthy foods, and paying attention to time breaks the habit of being late.

- Put your energy into developing good habits.

Force of Words
More than a sound, words are a creative force.  They have the power to bring encouragement, blessing, healing and wisdom or hurt, shame and discouragement.  Words change the course of history.  The words of Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. pointed us toward the goals of justice and equality, and Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death'' speech connected with his countrymen and rallied them to victory in the Revolutionary War.  Words have the power to bless or curse the future.  The people you influence are counting on you to speak words of life, truth and hope.

- Think about this:  how would your life be different if your words were more positive, uplifting and encouraging?

This is what I love about the future:  We can do something about it. These are just a few of the factors that impact our life.  We don't have to feel powerless, pessimistic or anxious about what lies ahead.  I believe we can partner with God to live the best lives He has called us to.  It is never too late to decide that you're going to take ownership of the choices you make in life.  Our greatest power is our power to choose.

Kevin Gerald is a sought-after motivational speaker and author of several books.  In leadership and life, Kevin purposes to locate and communicate wisdom.  He and his wife, Sheila, are the lead pastors of Champions Centre in Tacoma and Bellevue, WA.  His book and message series, Forces That Form Your Future, help us to learn about the things that most strongly affect our lives.


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