3 Easy Ways To Predict Your 2017!

I don’t have any supernatural-psychic powers. I can’t tell you who you are going to marry, how long you’re going to live, or if you’ll win the lotto. But I can give you a pretty good idea of what your 2017 and years to come will be like.

Here’s how:

1. Show me your checkbook and your calendar, and I can predict your future.

It’s really not that hard.

Who you and I will be tomorrow we are becoming that person today. Who we will be tomorrow is determined (largely, not exclusively) by what we are investing in today.

Where we are putting our time and money determines who we will be tomorrow. That principle applies to our spiritual life, our personal life, our marriage and family life, our professional life, our finances, our health, and our relationships.

The same principle that applies in nature applies to our future. The seed we sow today will determine the fruit we harvest tomorrow. It’s really that simple.

2. Tell me about your habits, and I can predict your future.

One author  clearly spelled this principle out this way, “People do not decide their futures; they decide their habits, and their habits decide their futures.”

This axiom is so true! The habits we build today will determine the futures we have tomorrow. It’s not our good intentions that determine our future, nor is it a short season of inspiration, and it’s certainly not a stroke of good luck. None of these determine our future. It’s our habits. It’s those things we do day after day after day.

As I recently heard someone say, “Time on task, over time, will beat inspiration every time.” That’s habit.

3. Show me your friends, and I can predict your future.

It’s been said that if you take a person’s five closest friends and average their income, 90 percent of the time that will be the your average income as well. This blog isn’t about money, but the principle still holds true.  The people around us influence us. They either influence us to maintain our status quo, or they pull us down a direction we may not want to go, or they push us and inspire us in a direction we do want to go.

So now that you know I’m not a psychic—and my guess is neither are you—yet you can still predict your future. So reflect on these 3 ways and then consider; what will your 2017 and years to come be like?

If I can help you live a more purposeful and productive 2017, check out my Life-Focus Coaching services and contact me for a FREE consultation.

Anticipating a Purposeful and Productive 2017,
Ken L Roberts

 

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What Are You Working Toward in 2017?
(Here are the top 7 searched on Google)

As we enter into the first weeks of 2017, what areas will you be working toward—to grow in, to strengthen, to rebuild, to start, to restart—for 2017?


Here are the top 7 topics most searched as New Year’s resolutions on Google.

  1. “Get Healthy” – over 62 million searches
  2. “Get Organized” – over 33 million searches
  3. “Live Life to the Fullest” – nearly 19 million searches
  4. “Learn New Hobbies” – over 17 million searches
  5. “Spend Less/Save More” – nearly 16 million searches
  6. “Travel” – nearly 6 million searches
  7. “Read More” – over 4 million searches

Here are my top seven areas for 2017.

  1. Continue to deepen my spiritual life
  2. Spend more quality time with my family and a few close friends
  3. Continue to build my new Spiritual Growth Membership Community
  4. Finish the first full draft of my latest book: Living Like Your Leaving: A Practical Path To A Purposeful Life
  5. Get certified as a life and leadership coach.
  6. Through my speaking, training, writing and coaching – assist more people in their personal and spiritual growth
  7. Through my speaking, training, writing and coaching – help more Pastors and Christian leaders lead well while they live well.

What are the top areas you are working toward in 2017? 

  1. _______________________________________
  2. _______________________________________
  3. _______________________________________
  4. _______________________________________
  5. _______________________________________
  6. _______________________________________
  7. _______________________________________

Please leave a list of yours in the comment section below.


Life-Focus Coaching
If you are interested in personal coaching to help you have a purposeful and productive 2017, then check out my coaching services and contact me. I’d love to help.

Believing for 2017 to be a purposeful and productive year,
Ken L Roberts

 

Please leave a comment:
*PS. The top 7 searched on Google is according to a company called iQuanti

How Would You Rate YOUR 2016? Here’s Mine.

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Another year has passed; a new one has begun. As you reflect on 2016—on a scale of 1 to 10—how would you rate your 2016?


Here’s mine.

On a scale of 1 to ten I would rate my 2016,

9.5!

Here’s why.

  • My first grandchild was born. I’m finding out there’s nothing better than being a grandparent.
  • I transitioned out of my role as a senior pastor for these past thirty-three years into my new role as a speaker, trainer, author, and coach. There’s nothing like getting up every morning and spending my day focused on what I’m most passionate about and what I believe is my greatest contribution.
  • In my transition of roles (noted above), I also moved from Minneapolis, Minnesota, back to Cleveland, Ohio to be close to most of my family and some long-held friends and colleagues. There’s nothing like being at the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing.  Read: Why I Moved Back To Cleveland, Ohio and Why You Should Even Care
  • In the fall of 2016 I started an online Spiritual Growth Membership Community. It’s specifically designed to help people in very clear, easy, and practical ways continue to grow spiritually. I feel like my whole life has been preparing me for this moment!
    Find out more about the launch of my Spiritual Growth Membership Community.
  • I made significant progress on my third book, Living Like Your Leaving: A Practical Path To A Purposeful Life. I’m really excited about this book.
  • I turned 60! Not as crazy about this milestone as some of my other ones, but I know I’m doing what I was designed to do and focused on doing the most productive and purposeful things in this third-quarter season of my life and ministry.  Read: I Turned 60!

So that’s mine.  How about yours? 

On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your 2016?

_____

And why?

Please leave a comment below.

Believing for 2017 to be a purposeful and productive year,
Ken L Roberts

PS. Please leave a comment below. I’d love to hear about your 2016.

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Christmas In A Box! REALLY?

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We like things tied up in a nice, neat package – including the story of Christmas.

But is the story of Advent, the coming of Christ as the Light and Life into our dark and disordered world, really that neat?

We live in a culture, however, where we want “everything tied up in a nice box.” Whether it’s the ending of a movie, the conclusion to a novel, or the story of Christmas – we want God (and the ways of God) wrapped up in a nice, neat box, with a big, bright ribbon tied on top.

But that’s NOT the story of Christmas.

It Pulsates With

Intrigue…Mystery…Confusion…Awe…Uncertainty…

Miracles…Murder…Wonder…Puzzlement…Questions…Debate.

  • A virgin overtaken by the Holy Spirit and bearing a child?
  • A jealous king killing babies just to secure his own insecurity?
  • Angels appearing to shepherds at night?
  • God putting on skin and coming to earth as a human?
  • Three “wise men” miraculously following a star and finding a messiah?
  • A baby born in a stable and sleeping in a manger who later becomes a king?

Now that’s a lot of mystery!

Yet, sometimes, much of our Evangelical theology seems…Too processed. Too packaged. Too perfect.

It feels like we’ve removed much of the mystery.

We’ve become uncomfortable with the unexplainable. We’ve secularized the sacred.  We’ve packaged the invisible. We’ve domesticated the drama. We’ve merchandized the miraculous. We’ve sanitized the supernatural. We’ve humanized the divine.

My appeal to return to mystery and wonder isn’t a plea for an attitude of anti-intelligence in the Church. We don’t need more bad theology or stupid ways of thinking.  We have enough of that.

But after we’ve diced it, sliced it, parsed it, debated it, outlined it, preached it, and tried to explain it…

Let’s step back and once again embrace the mystery and the wonder of it all.

Amazed,
Ken L Roberts

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I Turned 60! A Few Short Reflections and One Heart-Felt Prayer

November 27th, 2016 I turned 60. Yes the BIG SIX…O!

As I cross this important mile marker, I hope these few short reflections and my heart-felt prayer will be helpful as you reflect on your own journey of life.

A Few Reflections

  • Life Is A Gift; Cherish It
  • Life Is Fragile; Handle It With Care
  • Life Goes Fast; Make Every Day Count
  • Life Is An Adventure; Enjoy It
  • Life Shapes Us; Allow It To Shape You Into The Person You Want To Become
  • Life Is Temporal; Prepare For The Life That’s Coming That Will Be Eternal


A Heart-Felt Prayer

God grant me twenty more years of meaningful ministry. Grant me—through my speaking, training, writing, coaching and the way I live my life—the honor of influencing tens of thousands to live their lives with purpose. And as a result may I , along with those I have somehow and in some small way  touched, one day hear you say, “Well done good and faithful servant. Now enter into the joys I’ve prepared for you.”

I pray this in the name of One who gave His life so that I could live an abundant and eternal life.

In Jesus’ name, amen.

Whatever age you are, I pray you’re making your life count and you’re preparing your life for your eternal life that is yet to come.

If I can help, I’d be honored.

Living On Purpose,
Ken L Roberts

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Is Living, Killing You?

melancholyman

Is living, killing you? It’s an honest question.

The hardest job I ever had was when I was sixteen.

I was a “mud man” for a local brick-laying crew. My job was to keep mortar, bricks, and scaffolding supplied for three experienced bricklayers. My day consisted of making mortar, carrying bricks, moving scaffolding, mortar, bricks, scaffolding, mortar, bricks, scaffolding…

This crazy pace continued all day, every day!

Although you’re probably not a “mud man,” the routine of your life may be a grind just the same.

You make breakfast, get the kids off to school, clean the kitchen, make the beds, pay the bills, answer the phone, do laundry, plan supper, go grocery shopping, pick the kids up, go to soccer practice, (or dance practice, or karate class, or Brownies, or Boy Scouts or piano lessons or…), help with homework, referee a sibling spat, cook supper, wash the dishes, help with some more homework, referee another sibling spat, set the alarm and stumble into bed—numbingly aware that the same grind awaits you the next day and the next and the next.

These scenarios may or may not describe your daily routine, but for too many of us our pace of life is very similar to the grind of a “mud man.”

The danger of the dailyness of life is that it can destroy the very heart of life.

Life can reduce us to mere zombies. We stumble through life keeping the body parts moving, but our hearts are barely alive. We’re breathing, but not really living. We’re sucking in air; still taking up space on the planet, but are we really living?

Mark Twain summed up this kind of life when he remarked about the death of an acquaintance with these witty words,

“He died at thirty; they buried him at sixty.”

William Wallace in the movie Braveheart also summed it up well when he famously said,

“We know that all men die, but not all men live.”

So let me ask you,

Are you still stepping toward or even stumbling toward your dreams?
Are you living from a heart full of passion and purpose?

If not, living may be killing you?

If I can assist you in finding and fulfilling your life’s purpose, I’d love to help:

Living on Purpose,
Ken L Roberts

Are you stuck staring at a horse’s rear-end?

horses

Are you stuck staring at a horse’s rear-end?

The U.S. standard rail gauge – the distance between the two rails of a railway – is exactly four feet, eight and one-half inches. A very odd measurement.

And why is that?

Because that’s the measurement they used to build the railways in England, and since it was the English expatriates who built the railroads in the United States, the same measurements that were used in England were used in the U.S. .

And why did the English build their rails with such odd measurements?

Because the same people who built the tramways (pre-railroad days) built their rails with a distance of exactly four feet, eight and one-half inches apart.

And why did the people who built the pre-railroad tramways build their rails with an exact distance of four feet, eight and one-half inches apart?

Because the tramways reused the same jig, tools, and measurements that had been used to build wagons, which used the same spacing between wagon wheels of exactly four feet, eight and one-half inches.

And why did the wagons have the spacing between wagon wheels of exactly four feet, eight and one-half inches?

Because if the spacing had been different, the wagon wheels would’ve broken on many of the old, long-distance roads in England…which incidentally had wheel ruts with the same spacing of four feet, eight and one-half inches.

And why were the old rutted roads built with the same spacing of four feet, eight and one-half inches?

Because the Imperial Roman Empire built the first roads in England thousands of years ago, and the ruts of these roads were spaced four feet, eight and one-half inches, because the Roman war chariot made the initial ruts.

And why did the Imperial Roman war chariots have roads that had ruts spaced four feet, eight and one-half inches apart?

Because the Imperial Roman war chariots were made just wide enough – four feet, eight and one-half inches – to accommodate the back end of two warhorses!

So let me get this straight.

The U.S. standard rail gauge of four feet, eight and one-half inches 

came from 

the rear ends of two warhorses? 

What a classic illustration of doing things because that’s the way we’ve always done things.

My Point:

If you’re stuck in a rut and you’re doing the same old things in the same old ways you’ve always been doing the same old things…

well, it may be time to stop staring at the back end of a horse’s rear-end.

It may be time for some changes, some new challenges, some new growth, some new ideas, some new habits, some new thinking, some new adventures, some new risk. It maybe time to get out of that four foot, eight and one-half inch rut and find a better view.

If I can help get you out of a rut

If I can assist you in finding and fulfilling your life’s purpose, I’d love to help:

Living Life With Purpose,

 

Ken L Roberts

* Material from the book, The Seven Decisions, by Andy Andrews, pages 102 – 103.

 

 

Cancer or a 6:30 Martini: Which Do You Prefer?

martini

Cancer or a 6:30 martini; which do you prefer? Winifred Gallagher had both. Here’s her story and her remarkable discovery.

Her Story:

Winifred Gallagher was diagnosed with cancer. Not just cancer, but a nasty and fairly advanced kind.

In her 2009 book titled Rapt, Gallagher recalls walking away from the hospital after being diagnosed with cancer and having this sudden and strong intuition:

“This disease wants to monopolize my attention, but as much as possible,
I’ll focus on my life instead.”

Her treatment that followed was exhausting and terrible, but Gallagher couldn’t help but notice that her commitment to focus on what was good in her life—”movies, walks, and a 6:30 martini”—instead of constantly focusing on her cancer, was working surprisingly well during that difficult season of her life.

Gallagher writes, “My life during this period should have been mired in fear and pity, but instead it often felt quite pleasant.”

Her Discovery:

Through her experience with cancer, Gallagher set out to better understand what the role that attention plays in a shaping and defining the quality of our life. That is, she wanted to better understand how, what we choose to focus on and what we choose to ignore, directly effects how we feel and how we behave.

According to Gallagher’s experience and ongoing study, plus what decades of research from numerous other like studies –

Gallagher concluded that our brains construct our worldview based upon
what we pay attention to.

If you focus on a cancer diagnosis, you and your life become unhappy and dark, but if you focus instead on an evening martini, (her focus for  delight), you and your life become more pleasant—even though the circumstances in both scenarios are the same.

As Gallagher summarizes: “Who you are, what you think, feel, and do, what you love—is the sum of what you focus on.”

Gallagher’s discovery reaffirms a universal truth that God established eons ago… “As a man thinketh, so is he.”  (Proverbs 23:7)

So The Obvious Question Is:

What are you focusing on?  What are you giving attention to?

How you and I answer that question, to a great degree, determines the direction in life we go and the quality of the life we live.

Living on Purpose
Ken L Roberts

 

*Excerpts taken from the book Deep Work by Cal Newport

Please Leave A Comment: I’d love to hear how you “practice” having right thinking.

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Offering You A Miracle Drug – That’s FREE!

snakeoil1

Okay! I know it sounds like I’m trying to sell you some swamp land I own in Florida, or a bottle of water from the fountain of youth I recently discovered on my latest trip to New Guinea.

But, if there was a drug that

  • added years to your life
  • reduced the risk of having a heart attack or stroke
  • cut your risk of Alzheimer’s disease by more than half
  • helped you relax during the day and sleep better at night
  • doubled your chances of staying drug-and alcohol-free after treatment
  • activated your natural killer cells so you are less likely to get cancer
  • diminished your inflammatory cells
  • increased your good cholesterol
  • got you more friends

Would you be interested?

Well there is something that offers all of these benefits. It’s not a DRUG, but it is FREE!

What is it?

Send me $197 by the end of the week, and I’ll let you know. Just kidding!

No really, What Is It?

Scientific research proves that people who live an intentional, meaningful, and purposeful life experience many of the benefits listed above.

This isn’t a joke. It’s not hype. It’s not the sales copy for an info commercial. It’s scientific research.

People who find and live a purposeful life (a life tied to something larger and more meaningful than our own selfish pursuits) live a better, healthier, longer, and happier life.

How about you?

Are you living your life with meaning and purpose?

It’s an important question. Your health and even your life could depend upon it.

If I can help

If I can assist you in finding and fulfilling your life’s purpose, I’d love to help:

Living With Passion and Purpose,
Ken L Roberts

PS. The research noted above is from the book, Life On Purpose, by Victor J. Strecher

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Why I Cry Watching “The Voice”

thevoice

My wife and I like to watch the TV show The Voice. Wow, what awesome talent.

But on many nights while I’m watching, I find myself choked up—sometimes even a little tear running down my face (which I turn away and make sure my wife doesn’t see!).

Here’s why I tear up.

I often tear up watching The Voice because I love to see people pursuing their dreams!

Every one of us are gifted in some way (mine isn’t singing!), and it’s my personal conviction that our gifts are connected to a dream that we each carry deep in our heart.

Bruce Wilkinson, in his book The Dream Giver, describes it this way:

“No matter where I travel in the world—whether among hard-charging Manhattan urbanites or villagers in southern Africa—I have yet to find a person who didn’t have a dream.  They may not be able to describe it.  They may have forgotten it.  They may no longer believe in it.

But it’s there.

Like the genetic code that describes your unique passion and abilities, your Big Dream has been woven into your being from birth. You’re the only person with a Dream quite like yours.  And you have it for a reason: to draw you toward the kind of life you were born to love!”  

Like Wilkinson, I believe that in the heart of every person lives a dream. We may have to silence some internal voices of self-doubt or remove layers of expectation piled on us by others, but if we listen close enough, or drill deep enough, we’ll find a dream still alive.

Let’s Kill The Dream-Killers

It’s unfortunate, but some find all this encouragement about having and pursuing dreams as nothing more than idealistic romanticism or impractical sentimentalism. Others view it as just another creative way to veil increased selfishness.

I’m certainly not suggesting more materialistic, hedonistic, or narcissistic pursuits.  Evaluating our motives for pursuing certain dreams is important.  But what I am suggesting is that it is narrow (and arrogant) to catalog some people’s dreams as worldly and some as holy, some as altruistic and some as selfish, some as secular and some as sacred.  Fortunately, God is the dream giver, and in the end only His vote counts.

I agree with pastor and author Erwin McManus’s perspective when he writes,

“When you make God your primary passion, He transforms all the passions of your heart. The result of this transformation is that it will be God’s pleasure to fulfill those passions … Your passions become your best compass for your spiritual journey.  When God is your desire, you can trust the passions of your heart.  It is in this state that you can most fully live a uniquely passionate life.”

The Voice, Here I Come

So whether your dream is to become a published author, run the Boston marathon, perform at Carnegie Hall, run a Fortune 500 company, build orphanages around the world, stamp out world hunger, be the world’s best stay-at-home mom, or perform on The Voice one day—if it’s a passion from God, and you’re doing it with a passion to please God, then pursue it.

Who knows, if you ever make it on The Voice, I may be watching that night!

Still Pursuing My Dreams 

Ken L Roberts

 

My Offer To Help  It really is my hope that you are building and living a life that counts. So, as a way to help, below are two services I want to offer you.

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The Voice, U.S. TV series logo used under fair use (commentary)

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