#9 limits = more creativity
most of the time we think that more freedom equals more creativity. but i tell you the less money you have, the MORE creative you have to be with your wardrobe, your meals, your decor, and your gift giving. the most creative you will ever be is when you are making something out of nothing. do not despair when things are limited. get creative.
#10 make mistakes.
never be afraid to fail. be afraid if you succeed every time. first of all because you will be prideful. and that is never a good place to be. i could list all the times that God says that He hates pride in the Bible but i would run out of room and you would run out of patience. but believe me when i tell you that pride never takes you down a good road. so make mistakes, not on purpose BUT because you are trying lots of different things in lots of different ways. do things that you think you can’t do. try. fail. learn. try again. fail a different way. learn some more. i regret the things i didn’t try because i thought i would look foolish. because i might fail. i wish i had tried more things. been less afraid of failure. been more aware of grasping at all the amazing things that there are to try this side of heaven. been less worried about what other people thought. they really weren’t thinking about me at all. they were dealing with their own insecurities. and their own fear of failure. fail in order to succeed. and when you do succeed, do it with humility and grace and knowing that your only real success is in knowing the One who can never fail.
more important than what you have, where you live, what you do... are your friends. you will be rich if you are rich in friends. and not just people who pat you on the back and say “well done” but those who will trip you up and while you are down say, “ummm, you stay down while i tell you a few things” and say it in love. and then help you back up. have those friends. and keep them. praise Christ for great friends who aren't afraid to get in your face. the Bible says, “morons always run in herds.” i mean, you've got to know Hebrew to read it like that, but it kind of basically says that. a herd is a group that will follow each other and not thinking about where they are all going (perhaps over a cliff). wise people put men and women around them who are not afraid to go deep and point out flaws. friend who will question you, question your motives, your behavior, and if you run off track will gently and lovingly (and sometime not so gently) tell you to get your butt back on the track). fools put people around them who sing songs to them and encourage sinful behavior and wickedness. find real friends. be a real friend. it is worth more than gold.
the tie that binds. and gags.
God gives you people to live with, to love, to learn from. and guess what... right now it is your family! see if we all lived alone we would convince ourselves that we have no weird quirks. that we were the only perfect person in the world. then you meet this a handsome young man and you go and get married and then in your first two years you get educated on all your quirks (because we never were the only perfect person in the world. that was Jesus, not you). so first God gives us family to learn to get along. really, that is why He gives us families. not just to annoy you. but to REALLY annoy you. the spiritual word for “being annoyed and still being loving” is “sanctification”. then you get roommates...ones that aren’t like you... it’ll be horrible, but as those two pieces of iron slam against one another, you might just be sharpened. with family or roommates you will eventually have conflict. growth only occurs in community, in real relationships. families, roommates, friends, sunday school groups, they’re painful and it’s hard to find one you like everyone and where everyone like you 100% of the time. why? because we don’t like people to see our junk and that’s what happens when you walk with people. your junk spills out sometimes. all the time. in isolation we live in a mirage. it’s the altar of self and it will kill you slowly. conflict is good. iron sharpens iron. sanctification is hard work. a long journey of obedience and thinking more about others than yourself. and learning to love somebody even when they aren’t like you is good. and learning this with your family is what this time of your life is for. these are the last few years you will spend at home. with your mom, dad, maxx, and rosalea. don’t waste this time. live with your family. laugh with them. and love them completely. let the process of sanctification begin at home. love us even if we are a bit quirky.