How to Enjoy Your Life More

How to Enjoy Your Life More

Is there something you can do that will actually help you enjoy your life more?

If there was a valid answer would you change what needed to be changed?

Maybe you’re cautiously answering, “Well, that depends…”

Have you ever thought about the fact that most folks have so much and enjoy it so little?

That trait is much easier to see in other people-

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2 Really Great Reasons You Should Be Filled With Hope

Maybe is should seem obvious, but sometimes it’s not. That hope filled glow can be seen on children’s faces and in nature’s majestic artistry. Sometimes we see through eyes that are strained with drudgery, pain and struggles. It’s in those times that we need to be filled with hope. And it is in those times that we can’t seem to find any reason to hope.

Nature seems to be waking up from it’s long Winter nap.

Just not feeling it!

The Azaleas beneath live oak trees draped with moss like tinsel are covered with glorious fiery fuchsia colored blooms. The Red Bud Tree has budded with clusters of tiny, happy flowers. Yet the birds seem to be the happiest of all; with all their singing and flitting from tree to ground, building or repairing their nests. Busy, busy winged creatures, preparing for their babies.

The vibrant, sunny colors and creatures are prophesying to the farmer, announcing, what he already knows, “It’s time to plant.” Stirring thick clouds of black and red and brown dust behind him, farmers in the South are already preparing the ground for the seed. Even with modern machinery farming is lots of hard work.

It’s risky work!

It’s expensive to plant a crop.

  • The machinery.
  • The fertilizer.
  • The time.
  • And there’s no guarantee that he will have a good harvest.
    • It’s risky…but a farmer plants because he has hope.
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1 Reason You Can’t Let Fear Stay

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Maybe you can think of a dozen reasons that fear shouldn’t hang out at your house, but I can tell you one great, big, huge, hairy reason it can’t stay at my house.   Before I share this 1 reason you can’t let fear stay, let me tell you how I learned that lesson.

I was writing God’s Laws for Kids, so I was studying Exodus and Numbers 13. I love the Old Testament stories especially anything about Moses. Moses is one of my heroes! My story begins at a crucial moment in Israel’s history.

It was time to take possession of the promise.

It was a promise that God made to Abraham. Some folks may have felt that the promise was old and dusty, like Joseph’s bones…after all it had been passed down and around for well over 400 years. But, Moses showed up one day, with his brother…sent by God to meet Moses, as he made his way toward Egypt. They had both heard from God. It was time-time for deliverance and freedom-and God was going to use them to lead His people out of Egypt.

Not just out, but into the wonderful land God had promised Abraham. (Genesis 15:4-20)


God described His Promise

to Moses  when he bowed before Him at the burning bush.

8So I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and lead them out of Egypt into their own fertile and spacious land. It is a land flowing with milk and honey—the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live. Exodus 3:8 NIV

  • Fertile.
  • Spacious.
  • Flowing
  • With nourishing milk and sweet honey.


They were out, and now it was time to go in…

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Finding Strength

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Many retailers and manufacturers have adopted a “just in time” mentality in regards to inventory. Instead of stocking inventory, it is ordered and received right when it is needed. Sometimes strength arrives “just in time” too!

I am a visual thinker.

That means I almost always want to know what something looks like. Most of the time I picture strength as bold and showy like the bulging muscles that drive a bully’s drawn fist. And, I forget that it can be seen even more accurately in the tenacity of a skinny-armed kid defending his brother.


I forget that strength can look different sometimes.

I forget strength can be gentle and relentless, like a bubbling current tumbling and polishing rocks in a riverbed. Strength that is demonstrated in kind words and deeds instead of hurling angry retaliatory ones. Strength that persists through difficulties. Or, strength that sees the best in people and speaks life into them instead of regurgitating the criticism that everyone else sees.

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What Do You Do With a Broken Heart?

What do you do with a broken heart? No really?

What do you do with loss?

And grief?


Heartbreak of all kinds?

If you follow my blogs you know that I written several times about strength lately.

I haven’t been able to get away from the subject of strength. I am convinced God wants His children to be strong!!! I’ve been working really hard on a post about how to build spiritual muscles that I planned to use this week. It was almost ready when the Florida School Shooting took place. Valentine’s Day this year broke so many hearts. One more time America was shaken with a senseless…insane shooting!!!

After the news broke of the shooting, I felt like I needed a different strength;

a quieter strength,

a calming strength,

a shareable strength.


I can’t explain why bad things happen.

If bad things only happened to bad people, I might try to form an explanation. But the truth is…they happen to the best of people.


And when things happen that I can’t explain,

I default to my core value…

“God is Good! Period! End of story!

I may not understand it, but I won’t blame it on God either. God is way smarter than I am, so I gave up a long time ago trying to give God advice. His ways are higher than mine.


I also know that the Devil is evil and we live in a fallen world.

But the “why” question is simply too big for me to unravel…from the books I read and the Scriptures I’ve searched, God doesn’t seem to offer much of an explanation. It remains a mystery that refuses to fit in any of my neat little boxes.

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How to Live Strong

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How to live Strong.

Live Strong was etched in millions of happy, yellow elastic bands. If you tied it’s message to finding a cure for cancer, you probably still wear yours, but if you tied the mantra to Lance Armstrong it’s doubtful that you do.

Lance Armstrong had it right when he published his mantra “Live Strong”. It caught like wildfire and spread hope throughout the world. His comeback from cancer was inspiring. His victories were record breaking. I refused to believe the dark whispers that leaked into the media. I thought they were empty, jealous attacks. But years later, he admitted his source of strength was covered with lies. He wasn’t as strong as he looked. His rippling muscles hid his weak character. He betrayed his fans, his followers, because when he came to the end of his strength he turned to numerous banned blood doping strategies. And that’s wrong on so many levels.

There is no doubt Mr. Armstrong wanted to live strong.

Strong is a pregnant word.

It’s a capsule packed with meaning. It includes physical strength, but isn’t limited to only that one aspect.

Strong means:

  • Vigorous
  • Fixed
  • Robust
  • Secure
  • Capable
  • Energetic
  • Tenacious
  • Sound
  • Unyielding

Did Mr. Armstrong’s downward spiral start with an excuse or the belief that he was an exception to the rules or maybe he felt entitled?

What about you?

Ever felt you had an excuse to break God’s rules?

An excuse or an exception…

Maybe just a little bit more entitled to what you want than everyone else???

So you broke God’s rules?

Rules that are not there to limit you…but protect you.

Obedience to God requires a heart of surrender to God and that is the surest path to Victory!

I absolutely love how the psalmist explains this truth in Psalms 119.

1Joyful are people of integrity, who follow the instructions of the LORD.

2Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts.

3They do not compromise with evil, and they walk only in his path Psalms 119:1-3 NLT

But this article isn’t about pointing out wrong; I want to point you to strong.

Living Strong was God’s idea.

It’s important that we understand God’s intentions go beyond:

  • Muscles,
  • Races
  • Applause and
  • Prestige.
  • They go beyond:
  • Galaxies,
  • Gold medals
  • Monetary gain or
  • Endorsements; not that there is anything wrong with any of these things.


The Apostle Paul is closing his letter to the church at Ephesus when he says, “A final word.”

Not as an after thought, but a final thought; the thought he wanted to leave them with. So, he’s about to say something important enough for us to sit up and listen.

“Be strong.”

This includes being strong in:

  • Character
  • Faith
  • Endurance and
  • Hope

It also includes being strong through:

  • Pain
  • Grief
  • Storms and
  • Loss


I’m surprised by how quickly I get to the end of my strength…the end of my endurance…the end of knowledge.

Paul knew this truth so, he didn’t stop with what to do…he explained how to do it;

“in the Lord and in his mighty power”.

The key is partnership…staying connected to the Lord.

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.” John 15:4 NLT

But, then Paul drills down to be specific.

Think with me for a minute…have you ever made a pot of chili…and realized something was missing? As you taste the hot concoction a second time, you ask yourself “What does this need”?

There are things you can rule out immediately, without even giving them any consideration. You don’t need coconut, or chocolate chips. As you taste, you know it has plenty of garlic and chili powder…but what it needs is some salt. So you reach specifically for the box of salt.

Paul is saying…Be strong in the Lord AND specifically…

His mighty power.

ACESS His power! His power is accessible to you.

I want to remind you…it’s something I say everywhere I go…and it’s something I have to remind myself daily—Christianity is not one more self-help program.

Christianity is a family partnership.

It is being born into God’s family and allowing the power of the living God to strengthen, guide and equip every area of our lives. It’s not superficial or contrived. Simply put, it’s a singleness of heart and motives.

Our journey is  not a struggle to BE strong. It is learning how to accessing His strength to live out His plan in the Earth!

You wouldn’t consider for one moment trying to use your hair dryer without plugging into the power. It doesn’t work without power. Your life just doesn’t work like it’s supposed to without plugging into the power.

How do you access it?

Ask for it. Believe God for it. Confess and Declare the promises of God belong to you.


A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Ephesians 6:10 NLT


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What Do You Do When You Get Hacked?

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What do you do when you get hacked?

Yes, I know all about being hacked.

i've been hacked. I learned what not to do and what to do when life hacks away at your resolve to win.I have read dozens of articles about what to do when you get hacked.

And…well, I can tell you what I did…but I’m not proud of it and I don’t advise it.

I quit…simply quit.

I didn’t quit on the first time…or the second time. But when the hackers locked me out the third time, I simply quit blogging. I cleaned it up. I installed a clean, fresh WordPress file, purchased a new template, deleted all my plugins and started fresh. The website had to be cleaned up. I couldn’t leave it that way, but the hackers won. For six months I didn’t write at all.

I felt like my life was being hacked too.

Caring for a sick family member. Closing a business. Closing old chapters in my life that were way over due was really hard!

I was white-knuckling things that were precious to me!

But now I realize, those “precious things” that I was trying so hard to keep were clutter keeping me from God’s best.

So, why am I mentioning this now?

Because I got hacked again!

(I am so sorry! If you came to my site on Saturday and had to run a virus scan on your computer, I am so sorry!)

It was a bad hack. But, what I did this time was totally different than previous times!

It couldn’t have happened at a worse time. Life can just slap you upside the head sometimes! This hack was one more slap.

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How Do You Keep From Striking Out?

How do you keep from striking out?

While the answer may seem obvious,

let’s talk about George Herman Ruth first. He was born in 1895. Some say he learned to play ball at St. Mary’s Reformatory/Orphanage and other stories say he ended up at St. Mary’s because of all the windows he broke playing stickball in the streets. When George was 16 years old he was signed on to play with the Baltimore Orioles (Minor League at that time.) His teammates nicknamed George the “Dunn’s new babe” and the nickname stuck.

Babe Ruth was a “give it all you got-slugger” at bat.

He said, “Baseball is the greatest game in the world and deserves the best you can give it.” And he did. But that all-in attitude earned him the unsolicited title “King of Strikeouts” five times. He struck out 1,330 times in his career! Strikeouts are serious failures for a ballplayer.

But his fans and history forgave him for the strikeouts because those all-in powerful slugs also made him the coveted “Home run King” with a record of 714 career home runs. A title he kept until Hank Aaron hit his 715th home run in 1974.

He had a total of 2,873 hits and batted in 2,213 runs, which at this time ranks him #4 in RBI (runs batted in.)

The Babe said, “Never let the fear of striking out get in your way.” Tweet this!

It seems that in the years that have passed since Babe Ruth played ball, ballplayers listened to Babe Ruth and watched how he played ball. That information changed ballplayers.

Babe Ruth isn’t the “King of Strikeouts” any longer! He’s not even ranked in the top 100 list of players with the most strikeouts. He is ranked #123 on the list.

The statistics show that players are playing bolder.

Instead of playing to keep from striking out…they are playing to hit the ball. That has produced more strikeouts, but it has developed some real winners too! Babe Ruth’s home run records have been surpassed by two great ballplayers.

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Are You Looking For the Key to Success?

key to success…

is there really such a thing? Why is it so illusive? And where can you buy it?

Maybe those answers depend on how you define success…and what you’re willing to trade for it.

God straight out shared the Key to Success with Joshua.  So let’s listen over Joshua’s shoulder as God talks to Joshua  in Joshua 1.

Joshua had been here before…

not the location…the opportunity.
The opportunity to possess the land that God had promised Abraham. God brought His people out of slavery to bring them into the Promised Land, but they refused. Now it was Joshua’s promise…Joshua’s opportunity. He had to take ownership of both the promise and the opportunity or he wouldn’t make it.
Joshua was there when they had their chance; both he and Caleb. Although 40 years of dust, heartache and thousands of funerals separated the two opportunities, the scene was still fresh in his memory. The sound of Caleb’s voice trying to calm the frightened people and then the explosion of their anger and rebellion that followed was impossible to forget.
Crossing the Jordan River would be their entry point into the land God had promised. He could see the trees that lined the Jordan River long before seeing the blue waters. The river was at flood stage, not the opportune time for crossing with children and livestock. Why does opportunity always knock at the most inopportune time? Could they do it? They had been so close before; now they were close again. Of all the people (20 years of age and older) that stood at the edge of opportunity with Moses, waiting for the 12 spies to return; only Joshua and Caleb were still alive. Even Moses was dead. Would they possess the land now?
Their Exodus was complete, God had brought them out of slavery, but possessing the land required ownership and partnership.
The job that lay before Joshua was daunting…without God it was impossible.
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can you succeed joshua plan

Can You Succeed?

Can you succeed?

It’s easy to doubt. Doubting is safer and a lot less work, but when your heart is filled with purpose finding a way to succeed is the only route to take. If you’ve ever failed, and actually failure is an important part of succeeding, you can let it stop you or it can fuel your search for your steps to success. That’s where I am. I have goals that have been on my list for way too long! The time has come to accomplish them! How do I succeed? My search took me to Scripture.

I have to start this conversation with an old promise…over 440 years old… a promise that had been kept alive simply by the faithfulness of Almighty God.

Joshua 1 takes us to a pivotal moment in Israel’s history. Moses is dead. The only thing that stood between them and the land of promise was the Jordan River. Joshua had stood here 40 years earlier and failed.

It wasn’t his fault…

it was the people’s fault; their unbelief, their fear and their rebellion kept them from God’s best. This was a new day is so many ways; but would he fail again? All the older folks that had sinned were dead now, except he and Caleb. Joshua and Caleb’s faith and obedience had kept them alive. (And the devil told you your faith is worthless.) The memories of the people’s actions must have been emotional for Joshua as he remembered how it all took place. Would they wimp out again?

The authorship of the book of Joshua is uncertain. The Jewish Talmud credits Joshua as the author. I believe he was the author, if for no other reason than the wording in Joshua 1:1. “After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide:

A historian would have called Joshua, Moses successor, Moses protégé or Israel’s new leader. This verse uses a word that means aid, higher servant or minister. Did Joshua still see himself as only Moses’ helper? It’s one thing to be an assistant, but now the responsibility to lead them into the land of promise rested squarely on his shoulders. In the verses that followed, God was building Joshua’s faith to emotionally and spiritually do the job God had called him to do.

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Five Steps So Your Resolve Doesn’t Dissolve

If you are an adventurer, you start with spreading out your map. (Maybe yours is a digital one?) Then the second step is “Where do I want to go?” What do I want to do? What do I want to see? And finally, what if anything do I want to accomplish? Only after you’ve  answered those questions can you map your trip to your destination. It’s not rocket science…just necessary if you want to arrive at your destination.

Don’t you think your life deserves at least that much attention?

There’s lots of chatter over whether or not to make New Years Resolutions.

I totally understand…

why bother to make them if your not going to keep them?


My answer to that question is

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“You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” Psalms 65:11 NLT

Not Shutting the Door on 2017 Yet

I wanted to slam the door on 2017, but it was like trying to slam a closet door with an avalanche of stuff puffing and oozing out of cracks around and under the door. And like the too full closet,  the door could not be shut until it was dealt with!


2017 ended with two of my grandchildren in two different cities in the emergency room. (All will be fine! They are both recovering at home now!) Praise God!


What a YEAR!

I don’t want to reflect on 2017…I just want to FORGET and move on…

Hope for better things…put the past behind me!


But I woke up with Psalms 65:11 NLT “You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” on my heart

“You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” Psalms 65:11 NLT

When Wayne and I started our prayer time this morning, he mentioned that a verse was on his heart and began to read and then pray Psalms 65:11.


As Wayne talked and prayed, I could picture walking a hard packed pathway. You know the kind, so hard that not even a weed can penetrate the hardness…(that’s hard ground!). But as I looked back I saw where I walked was now overflowing with beautiful, fragrant flowers and plants. It was so thick and lush that I had to push through the fragrant beauty to gather the harvest.


I know, I know…nothing grows on hard pathways, but I believe the word of the Lord which says “even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” I believe that God is still the God of miracles. Nothing is wasted in His Kingdom!


Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” Galatians 6:7 NIV


So for me, I’m not shutting the door on 2017 yet, because I am believing God, Who made the sun and moon and all the universe is crowning 2017 with a bountiful harvest that overflows into my 2018! I am believing God that even my hard pathways will overflow with abundance.

In 2017, I planted seeds of prayer…I planted seeds of obedience and I’m not leaving my harvest to rot…I will eat and share my harvest with others!


And what about you?

You’ve sowed into 2017 too! Don’t miss your harvest!

Happy New Year! I hope it is filled with blessings, joy, fruitfulness and peace. I pray that you will experience the love of God and His presence is ways as never before!

Hey! Thanks for stopping by.

I’m Pat Holland…

I tell stories- who doesn’t love a good story?

But I tell mine for a reason. I want to equip, empower and energize people just like you to enjoy the riches of God’s life-changing Word. So I use stories about people, sometimes myself,  places I’ve been, and life experiences as a tool to make Bible truths so simple you can walk them out in your everyday life.

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