- Obedience doesn't just please the God of Heaven and Earth, but it builds your true character. For some reason as a child rules are really obnoxious. They get in the way of pleasure. Every day I ask my son what his favorite part of the day was and he, most regularly states, "Um, when I played." It is really what every child is all about. The fun part of life. I have yet to meet a child that says their favorite part of life is all the rules that their parents make for them. Rules get more difficult to follow the older you get, but I can assure you that obedience to those rules will not only keep you protected from the ills of the world, but your confidence is strengthened in order to contribute to the good in the world. Even the smallest rules, that seem insignificant and absurd, fuel the character growing within you. Confidence is something you will need ample supply of as you make tough choices in life. Who to marry, what type of education to get, how you will serve the community, and what type of jobs you will create. Everything starts with someone who knows what they want and who they are. I believe that obedience keeps that person strong, in good moral standing, and pleased with who they are.
- Money isn't everything. Blake and I are usually having the "one day" conversation where one day we won't be in school, our kids will be older, we will live in a home we own, and the burden and stress of trying to make ends meet will be a faded memory. Usually this conversation also brings about the understanding that what we want most out of life isn't all the toys and fancy lifestyle the "one days" will bring us, but the experiences the "one days" will enable us to have. It almost always brings us back to the experience we are having right now. Who we are without money is amazing us. We are creative, long suffering, humble (sometimes), tired, but excited. We are constantly learning and teaching. We are creating life and teaching those humans how to be people in a world without money and it works. Stress is hard. It gives Blake headaches and it gives my midsection a few extra inches, but it is part of this time in our lives. I imagine it will follow us to the "one days" as well and peak it's face into the walls of our home in unexpected ways, but we are learning how to handle it and it's not by throwing money at it. We are working out our problems, vocally, to each other and the Lord. Our children are learning how to survive without buying something every time we go to the store.Things are still happening for us without having money. So when we have money, and the one days become our nowadays, we want to make sure we remember what no money made.
- Make choices in your youth that will enable you to be a trustworthy person. Trust will be the most important asset you can have as a businessman, a spouse, and a human. You build trust in yourself and others trust you as you make choices that are good and valiant. These are choices you make with others and more importantly, choices you make when no one is looking. Who are you when no one is around? Trust will secure jobs for you, it will secure your marriage, and it will secure your family. Make sure you can be trusted. The worst feeling in the world is knowing you let people down because you don't have a well of honesty and integrity built up in you. Built up from years as a child that you had to practice being true. If you can have integrity, you will never be alone. The most successful man in the world will never feel success, if he goes home to no one. Loneliness is a hard road to walk. Be someone that can be depended on and trusted in every aspect of your life.
There is so much more to this. I am still trying to figure it all out. Be kind to everyone. Don't talk bad about your in-laws even if they are aliens from a different planet. Don't litter. Keep your home and office organized and orderly. Find time to go to the mountains and equal time to be on the beach. Serve the elderly. Talk to God out loud, whenever and wherever. Do good. Call your mother. Kiss your sweetie goodnight.
Best of luck in all you do.