Archive for March, 2014

25
Mar
14

Your “A” Game is useless without your “Be” Atitudes

Ben CarsonOur “A” Game refers to what we bring to the table displayed in our outward performance. Our “Be” Atitudes are derived from the Sermon on the Mount found in Matthew 5 and convey a series of blessedness based on our inward characteristics. Charlie “Tremendous” Jones said, “Knowing how let’s you drive it; knowing why drives you.” Our outward accomplishments are meaningless without the right inward intentions.

Last Friday I had the pleasure and honor of not only meeting, but dining alongside Dr. Ben Carson. We talked about everything from parents who made us read and write book reports growing up, to publishing, to speaking, to marketing, to mentors, to retirements and, yes, even to future callings. But what stood out most to me was how genuinely brilliant, yet humble, this man is.  He was not boastful, he displayed no hint of ego or hubris, and he exhibited extreme control, not only of the facts, but more importantly, of his emotions.

Dr. Carson is blessed because he is poor in spirit. He acknowledges his spiritual condition and the influence of God in his destiny. When I asked him about running for President, he replied, “If it’s God’s will.” He is aware of his God-given talents and places all of the decisions for their use in the hands of God.

Dr. Carson is blessed because he is meek.  Meekness is all about self-control and a quiet friendly composure which does not become embittered or angry under any circumstances.  It is an active attitude and a deliberate acceptance. “Angry people are selfish people” he said.  “It’s not about you; stay out of their slime pool.”

Dr. Carson is blessed because he is pure of heart. When I asked him about how he maintains his composure when untruths are levied against him, he shared how God dealt with his bad temper when he was a teen, healing him of a flaw which nearly put him on the road to prison.  He commented, “When God fixes a problem He doesn’t just do a paint job. He fixes it.”

When we look at leaders we tend to remember the visionary earth-movers, the fiery orators, the discerning decision-makers. But let us not forget the brilliant leaders who have changed the world through their inward spirit of humility and servitude: Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Mother Teresa, Abraham Lincoln, and the greatest role model of all, Jesus Christ. And in my book, I count Dr. Ben Carson as one of them.

 

21
Mar
14

50 Shades of Blue

50-Shades-of-Blue (1)In celebration of a life well lived, I paws to recognize one the greatest influences in my life, Mr. Blue. Mr. Blue is my soul dog, my once-in-a-lifetime dog, the companion who has stayed faithfully by my side through the tumulus last thirteen years.

People often mourn the death of a pet with great intensity, and they feel a bit strange about it, as if an animal is unworthy of such emotion.  I only saw my father cry twice in his life and one of those times was when he had to put his German Shepherd, Jessie, to sleep.

The reason we mourn the deaths of our pets so deeply is real, and is not to be discarded lightly. The love of an animal is unconditional. There are no bad times. When we lose humans, it is a mixture of sadness and, let’s be real, relief. That’s because there are good times and there are bad times. Not so with a soul dog. There are only good times which make it infinitely harder to let go.

The love of a dog is so rich, so real, so all-encompassing that it takes us to a divine level. Now I do not mean to deify or suggest that a dog is a substitute for a human or for faith, but I have come across countless humans who have told me stories of how their dog got them through the death of spouse, a divorce, or some other tragic circumstance.

Mr. Blue is one of those furever companions. He has brought such richness to my life that it is hard to even formulate the words to describe it. Those of you who have met him know what I’m talking about.

In August of last year, when Mr. Blue was twelve years old, he was diagnosed with lymphoma.  I was absolutely devastated.  We immediately embarked upon a sixteen-treatment chemotherapy plan. Mr. Blue went into remission immediately and things looked bright until his sixteenth treatment when he relapsed.

I’ve been through divorce, the death of a parent, and war (twice), and I can say this is the most devastated I’ve been. The oncologist moved him onto his second regimen of drug protocols and within a week Mr. Blue was back in remission.

He is doing remarkably well. He knows what I am doing for him. He has regained weight and is spunky and snarky, almost puppy-like. And as long as he has this quality of life we will continue on this journey. Every night I thank God for another day with Mr. Blue.

This experience has placed me in a state of thankfulness for the here-and-now, something I was sorely lacking in my life. In celebration of a life well lived and in the transformative power of a dog’s love, I invite you to join us in a special time of sharing on April 7th in the Charlie “T” Jones Conference Center where we’ll celebrate Mr. Blue’s life and continuing legacy!




Tremendous Tracey


CEO Tremendous Life Books. Book Evangelist

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