Tag Archives: brian tracy

Producing Better Fruit

Throwback Thursday is a new feature I’m using to help build some margin into my schedule to pursue other writing ventures. Each Thursday I’ll be bringing you a previously written devotional that still speaks encouragement to us from God’s Word.

Brian Tracy is one of the world’s leading motivational speakers for sales people. He has written several books, and is known internationally. One of the things he teaches is the Law of Correspondence. It says that your outer world will always be a reflection of your inner world. That means that your actions are driven by what’s going on inside of you. If there is chaos in your mind and heart, your actions will reflect that and your life will be crazy on the outside too. Our lives produce fruit that is a reflection of what’s going on in our heart.

In Matthew 12:33 Jesus said, “To have good fruit you must have a healthy tree; if you have a poor tree, you will have bad fruit. A tree is known by the kind of fruit it bears” (GNB). Every one of us bear fruit in our lives. The question is, is it good fruit or bad fruit? Our fruit is a reflection of our spiritual health. What goes on in our spirit man reflects in the fruit we bear. To have better fruit, we have to work on our spiritual health.

In my garden, I’ve noticed that the quality of the vegetables it produces is in relation to how much water it receives. When I forget to water it, there will be little to nothing being produced. What is produced during those times is undersized and not very tasty. When I add water, the plants will look differently almost over night. They will bloom quickly and produce a better harvest. It has to be constantly tended to if it is going to continuously bear good fruit.

If we fail to continuously water our spirit with the water that comes from God’s Word, we risk the same thing. Our fruit will be small and tasteless. It will reflect a dry spirit. We must take time to feed our spirit through reading God’s Word and spending time in prayer. If we are ever to escape a chaotic life end the fruit it bears, we are going to have to make time to focus on what’s going on inside of us. In time, our lives will bloom and produce the fruit that’s tasty to others and God.

Photo by Ashim D’Silva on Unsplash

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Being Thankful

I’m taking a break from writing this week, but want to give you a scripture each day to think about as we head into Thanksgiving and kick off the Christmas season

Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.
Psalms 100:4-5 NLT

What can you do today to show God that you appreciate Him?

Take a few minutes to thank God for the things He’s done.

Brian Tracy’s “Law of Thanksgiving” says, “The more you give thanks, the more you have to be thankful for.”

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Better Fruit

  
In one of the sales classes I teach by Brian Tracy, I teach the Law of Correspondence. It says that your outer world will always be a reflection of your inner world. That means that your actions are driven by what’s going on inside of you. If there is chaos in your mind and heart, your actions will reflect that. Your life will be crazy on the outside too. Our lives produce fruit that is a reflection of what’s going on in our heart.

In Matthew 12:33 Jesus said, “To have good fruit you must have a healthy tree; if you have a poor tree, you will have bad fruit. A tree is known by the kind of fruit it bears” (GNB). Every one of us bear fruit in our lives. The question is, is it good fruit or bad fruit? Our fruit is a reflection of our spiritual health. What goes on in our spirit man reflects in the fruit we bear. To have better fruit, we have to work on our spiritual health.

In my garden, I’ve noticed that the quality of the vegetables it produces is in relation to how much water it receives. When I forget to water it, there will be little to nothing being produced. What is produced during those times is undersized and not very tasty. When I add water, the plants will look differently almost over night. They will bloom quickly and produce a better harvest. It has to be constantly tended to if it is going to continuously bear good fruit.

If we fail to continuously water our spirit with the water that comes from God’s Word, we risk the same thing. Our fruit will be small and tasteless. It will reflect a dry spirit. We must take time to feed our spirit through reading God’s Word and prayer. If we are ever to escape a chaotic life end the fruit it bears, we are going to have to make time to focus on what’s going on inside. In time, our lives will bloom and produce the fruit that’s tasty to others and God.

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Determining Your Worth (Video)

Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?
Matthew 6:26

For God so loved the world (You) that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:16

If you are having trouble viewing this video, click here.

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The Law Of Correspondence 

Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but Let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind.Romans 12:2 (GNT)

One of Brian Tracy’s psychological laws is the Law of Correspondence. It states that your outer world will always be a reflection of your inner world. Your demeanor, actions and reactions are indicative of what’s going on inside your mind. Jesus put it this way, “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. (Luke 6:45)” Whatever is going on in your heart and mind shows up in your words and actions. That’s why you can often look at someone and know there is something wrong going on with them.

We try to cover up our hurt, our insecurities, our fears and sins, but they always seem to find a way to the surface. We can try to change our actions, but those on,y last for a little while. Ben Franklin carried a book with him in which he wrote down his vices. He tried to keep track of what he did, when he did it and what triggered it. Then he would do everything in his power to not repeat those things. What he found was that he could only do it for so long before other vices popped up. He was trying to control an inside problem with an outside mechanism.

Because we judge each other based on external actions, we often try to control our own external actions so as not to be judged. The problem is that we can’t do it for very long either before something else pops up. That’s why God doesn’t deal so much with our actions as He does with our heart. He knows that our external actions and sins are a result of what’s going on inside of us. He doesn’t deal with the fruit of the problem, He deals with the root.

Romans 12:2 tells us that God wants to transform our minds so that we won’t conform to the ways of the world. When we allow God to transform our heart and mind, we begin to act differently than before. II Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if any person is in Christ, he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old previous moral and spiritual condition has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new one has come! (AMP)” God takes away our old way of thinking and puts in us a new mind that wants to do things his way. 

If you’ve accepted Christ, but are still struggling with actions that are in conflict with how He wants you to live, pray and ask God to transform your mind. Give Him permission to come in and change your inner world so that your outer world will be a direct reflection of who He wants you to be. Scripture says that man looks at outward appearances (actions too), but God looks at the heart (mind too). He is more concerned with what’s going on inside than outside. It’s important that we stop trying to control our actions as Ben Franklin tried to do and to allow God to change our actions through the renewing and transforming of our hearts and minds. 

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Encourage One Another

When I was younger, there was a Christian group called Prism. All their albums were named after colors. On their “Yellow” album, the had a song called “We Will Always Be With The Lord”. They created the lyrics for that song out of I Thessalonians 4:18. Paul had just described what happens to the dead in Christ and what will happen to believers who are alive when He returns. The Church was under severe persecution when he wrote this letter to them and he wanted to encourage them in their struggle. While most of the Church today isn’t being persecuted for their faith, it’s still a good practice to encourage each other.

It was just a few verses later in I Thessalonians 5:11 that Paul again reminded the believers to encourage each other. He wrote, “So encourage each other and build each other up. (NLT)” He knew that each one of us have a deep internal need to be encouraged. It’s our responsibility to encourage each other as believers and to not tear each other down. If another believer needs encouragement, they should be able to find it within the Church. They shouldn’t have to go looking elsewhere.

A few months back, our small group used one of our Wednesday nights to enact something I learned from Brian Tracy’s “New Psychology of Selling”. It’s called the “20 Idea Method”. You take any problem you have, convert it into a question and come up with 20 ideas as to how you can answer it. This method ignites the creative side of your brain and gives you new ways to do the things you’ve always done. Most people never implement new ideas and therefore get the same results their whole life. You can’t expect growth or progress doing what you’ve always done. 

We asked the question, “What are 20 ways we can encourage others?” The first few answers came easily, but as we got closer to 20, we struggled. We pushed ourselves to keep going until we did. Many people in the group wrote them down or took a picture of the white board we used. Coming up with ideas is great, but the real power is in implementation. When we began to put into practice these simple ideas of encouraging others, it changed us as well. When you encourage someone else, it turns out you get encouraged as well. It’s mutually beneficial. I think that’s why Paul was so clear in his desire for believers to encourage each other. 

If you need encouragement today, try finding someone who is having a more difficult time than you and offer them encouragement. If you are riding an emotional high today, spread the wealth and give out encouragement like you’ll explode if you don’t. There isn’t anyone out there who doesn’t love being encouraged. Each one of us have the need to hear, “You’re going to make it through this and I’ll help make sure of that.” Don’t just look at someone who is struggling and say, “Take courage! It’ll all work out.” Go over to them and offer tangible help. Pray for them. Give them a verse that has helped you. Offer to carry their load. Be a person who listens instead of gives advice. Buy their lunch. Words often fall flat, but actions build up.

I’d love it if you wrote in the comments one way you could encourage someone today. It will give others different ideas on how they can encourage someone who needs it.

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Active Faith

I’ve always enjoyed reading the miracles that Jesus performed. There are a lot of similarities in them. A lot of the times Jesus tells the person, “Your faith has made you whole.” That phrase has always stood out to me because it puts the power of the miracle in the hands of the one receiving it. Other times, Jesus tells the person to go and do something and as they turn away to do it, they receive their healing. Again, it was their action that triggered the healing. In the miracles that I can think of, it’s always a partnership between the person in need and Jesus.

The disciples found five loaves and two fish and jesus fed 5,000. The blind man at the Pool of Siloam had to go wash his eyes for sight. The invalid lowered through the roof by his friends had to pick up his mat. Peter had to cast his nets on the other side. The woman with the issue of blood had to touch the hem of His garment. The ten lepers had to go show themselves to the priest. Each of these required action on the person’s part. They had to act in faith to receive their miracle.

At work, I study Brian Tracy philosophies in sales. One of the things he talks about is the Law of Belief. It says that your beliefs become your realities. He adds to it that people always act in a manner consistent with their beliefs. I immediately translate that to a life of faith. Peter believed if he got out of the boat, he would walk on water. No one else got out of the boat. It makes me think that he was the only one who truly believed he could do it. Each person in that boat acted on their belief. I quickly realized that my beliefs are not what I say they are, but rather what I act on.

There’s a difference in saying I believe in something and in acting on that belief. My actions speak louder than words. James put it this way: faith without works is dead. You could also say, “Faith without action is dead.” The Bible is full of miracles and promises of God that require action on our part. You and I are part of the equation that God uses to solve problems. When we truly believe that He can use us, we start acting in a manner consistent with that belief. We actively become His hands and feet. Until that point, as James put it, our faith is dead.

What has God asked you to do that you’ve been holding back on? Where has He asked you to go, but you still haven’t moved? Put your actions where your words are. Step out in faith and act on what you believe. Peter did and he’s the only disciple that can say he walked on water. It’s time we got out of our boats and started trusting God to do the impossible. If we truly believe that all things are possible with Him, we’ll act in that manner. Believe what God tells you, trust in His Word and put your faith into action. Your life will forever change at that moment.

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Out Of Control

I have a confession to make. I’m a bit of a control freak. I love being in control of what’s happening in my life, where I’m going and how things are going to happen. I like to think through every possible scenario before any situation so that I’m prepared for whatever happens. I don’t like it when other people are in control of my situation. There are too many variables. I don’t like it when I don’t know what’s coming next or how to prepare. It can be overwhelming when I’m not in control of my destiny or immediate future.

Brian Tracy, a sales minded motivational speaker, teaches that we feel good about ourselves to the degree to which we are in control of our lives. When we have everything under control, we feel great. When our lives are spinning out of control, we feel horrible. Each one of us have something different that we associate with control. For some, it’s money. When we have it, we feel freedom and in control. When we don’t, we feel helpless and out of control. We tie our self worth to control.

That’s not how God wants us to love though. I’d like to change it up a bit. I think as Christians we feel good about ourselves to the degree to which we allow God to have control in our lives. Each of us choose how much we trust God and how much control He has in our lives. Some of us only trust Him with our problems. Our prayers only go up when life comes down on us. Some of us trust Him with our money. We can’t take it with us so we might as well invest as much as we can in His kingdom so He can multiply it. Some of us trust Him with our whole lives. We look at everything that happens as an opportunity to grow.

When we trust in money, relationships, our parenting skills, our possessions or anything other than God, we are putting ourselves on an emotional roller coaster. We are putting our happiness in things that we can’t control. When we have money, others pay attention to us, the kids are behaving or we have lots of things, we feel great. But when our bank account is empty, others take us for granted, the kids won’t listen and we don’t have much, life gets pretty overwhelming. We feel about an inch tall and our lives seem out of control.

Don’t put your hope, happiness and self esteem in the hands of anyone but God. Ultimately, He’s the one who is in control in a chaotic world. He’s got a plan for your life if you’ll just give Him control to enact it. Your self worth shouldn’t be tied to your bank account, how others treat you, how your kids treat you, how productive you feel or what you have. Your self worth comes from God and when He looks at you, He doesn’t see a mess. He sees His child whom He loves. He sees His precious creation whom He designed to need Him and not to do things on their own.

He wants you to know that He’ll take care of whatever is eating at you today if you’ll just give it to Him. Whatever you’re holding onto today, so that you can feel in control, is what’s making you feel the way you do. The more you give control of your life to God, the better you will feel about your self and your situation. I Peter 5:7 says, “Casting the whole of your care (all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns) once and for all on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” God sees how you’ve allowed other things to control how you feel about yourself and wants you to give control to Him. You’ll feel better about yourself, your situation and your life.

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The Law of Concentration

Brian Tracy, who is a business consultant and motivational speaker, teaches about many laws of psychology. One of the laws he teaches is the Law of Concentration. It states that whatever you dwell on grows and increases in your life. If you are constantly dwelling on negative things, then negative things will increase in your life. If you dwell on good things, then good things will grow and increase in your life. If we think about things long enough, we’ll look for them. If we look for them, we’ll find them. If we find them, they’ll become part of our life.

As I heard him talk about this law, immediately my mind went to Philippians 4:8. It says, “Friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious – the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.” Paul knew the Law of Concentration. He knew that many of us spend our days and sleepless nights thinking about things that are counterproductive to our growth in Christ. He knew the temptation to think on negative things instead of positive things because he dealt with it himself.

Paul must have wrestled with thoughts of unworthiness from a past that caused so much pain to families. He took parents away from young kids and either put them in jail or killed them because they were Christians. I’m sure he suffered many sleepless nights wrestling with the consequences of his past. At some point he had to make a decision to continue worrying about the lives he wrecked or to think on the lives he was changing. He had to force out the negative thoughts that kept him from being a minister and force in thoughts that were positive.

He told us that we’d do best to think on these things listed above. Why? Because he knew if we thought about them and meditated on them, they would grow in our lives. If we want the best things and not the worst to grow, we have to think about them. If we want the beautiful and not the ugly things to surround us, we need to think about the beautiful things. If we want to live a life of praise, then we’ve got to think of praiseworthy things. Our minds can only think on one thing at a time and we get to choose what that is. II Corinthians 10:5 tells us to bring every thought captive and teach them to obey Christ because thoughts are powerful and grow things in our life.

What’s growing in your life? Have you noticed the correlation between that and your thoughts? What do you want to grow in your life? What is one thing you can do today to help you think more about that than the negative things that are growing in your life? Your thoughts not only dictate what grows in your life, but they also dictate your attitude. When you think on the positive things, then the peace of God will reign in your life. Worry, fear, anger, hate and jealousy all have to leave when you think on the things above. They can’t stay around. You have the power to kick them out of your life because you have the power to control what things you dwell on. Think on good things from now on.

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