Posted in Building Relationships

Ring the Bell

I read a great deal every day.  Some of what I read is for spiritual growth; other materials are for professional growth.  At the end of the day, however, I get to read for pleasure — not every day, but on those special days when I have enough left in my tank to blend consonants and vowels into words, I read a little poetry, a few political cartoons, and 20 or more of my favorite blogs.

Yesterday I read an article written by one of my favorite bloggers that made me pause. What Rick wrote touched me deeply and caused me to examine my life’s work and purpose. I’m grateful to have discovered what God wants me to do. He hasn’t revealed everything to me yet, but what he has shared with me, I  embrace and do my best to please him. That’s my only goal — to hear him say Well done. 

If no one remembers me, perhaps they will remember my contribution to the world. ~Michelle Malone

Everyone has a purpose, and we all want to feel valued. Consider for a moment what you have contributed to the world. Have you made a difference in the lives of others, or is it time to ring the bell?  Not sure what I’m alluding to? Take a little time to read Rick’s article — The Bell Ringer, and may it resonate with you. If you have not yet found your purpose, I pray that it is revealed to you in due time so that you, too, will hear Well done.

Author:

I started this blog as a means of chronicling my journey of Servant Leadership, but I believe that it has taken on a deeper purpose. As visitors read about my every day experiences as seen through a spiritual lens, I know that they’ll take the meat of my messages — the scriptures — and nourish themselves. I’m sure they’ll remember the stories and get to know me as a result, but the anecdotes are merely the vessels that store the meat. My hope is that you find encouragement here, and when you do, please share it with me. Encouragers need encouragement too.

15 thoughts on “Ring the Bell

  1. That’s a great thought and a great reminder. I’m trying to focus my heart and mind more on things that matter, including being positive! I’m positive that I want the world to see Jesus through me. They won’t remember my name but I want them to remember Him!

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  2. I am not in any way trying to be antagonistic. Everyone has the right to choose their faith. I am Buddhist. There is not a breath in me that believes in a power outside myself that knows me, understands me or has a plan for my life. Most people believe what they were
    taught and look no further. I left Christianity at 18 because I didn’t see people “practice” their faith and it was primarily made up of praise and praying for this entity to fix their problems. I wanted to study and find the answers that showed proof in my life, not just have blind faith. I found the answers in Nichiren Buddhism and oddly it teaches many of the same lessons as Christianity, except long before the Bible. I think over thousands of years many parts of different religions came from the same longing for the same answers but over time and repeated telling stories change and take on new meanings. Buddhists don’t consider God as being external, it is a life condition we strive for as we learn the lessons we need to learn. Ill use one example. In Buddhism, we believe our lives are made up of the continuity of cause and effect. What happens to our lives is the effect of causes, even though we may not understand the causes we made. Some are easy to see. We consider the law of cause and effect to be absolute, just like gravity on earth is absolute. Christianity has the same teaching -You reap what you sow – but from what I’ve heard and read it isn’t a lesson that carries much weight. It’s not very important. A pastor in his writings online recently told his followers not to worry about that phrase, even though it is mentioned dozens of times in the Bible. He said it didn’t matter because Jesus died for their sins. So anyone reading that is understanding it doesn’t master what they do, how they behave etc.because the are saved. Why strive to be a better person now while you are alive if you are saved from repercussions? During this political election year I have heard many “good” Christians full of so much hate for a variety of reasons. So I think, is this what it means now to behave as a Christian? Or are there just too many kinds of Christians? I only know that I have never met a Nichiren Buddhist, or a member any sect of Buddhism that spouts the hate I see in the media from Christians every day. And there are many millions of Buddhists in America alone, yet not one of them have said “I am a Buddhist and our teachings tell us that these other people ( gays, Muslims etc) are wrong so we have the right to hurt them, put a gun in their face in a restroom, kick them out of our country, ridicule and beat them up and more, because the Bible says it’s wrong. What is wrong with these people? Where did these Christians come from? I am not saying it is all Christians, but surely you have seen and heard this behavior, but not once have I heard ANY Christians say, “Wait a minute! This is not what we were taught. This isn’t Christianity. We are not to hate people – for any reason!” But no one says anything. All Christians are very quiet and that is scary. This is not a “Christian” Nation. It is a nation of many religions and is promised to have freedom of religion in our constitution. But Christians, and only Christians have the need to have it recognized as such. Faith is personnal. It should only matter how it affects the lives of you and perhaps your family. Your faith doesn’t affect me and shouldn’t affect law.

    Sorry, I got a bit long winded.

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    1. There are so many things I can respond to; however, I’ll simply say this: no two people are exactly alike in any way–how they live, how they act, or who the serve. Using the political culture to bash Christians is unfair. How many devout Christians are given a public forum? I worked in Media years ago. Good people don’t get good ratings. I’m glad that you have found peace in how you serve. I, too, have found peace and serve a God who lives everywhere, including within me. Thank you so much for sharing your faith. Now I want to learn more.

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      1. I understand that so much of it comes up in the political arena and that really isn’t a fair
        representation of reality. Surely, though, other Christians who are not the ones spreading so much negativity see it happening, too, I would think someone would at least try to explain this isn’t the way all Christians feel and it doesn’t represent the majority. Unfortunately, negativity sells and this election has been appalling in people bashing. Yet, because nothing is said, those of us who aren’t Christian only see the negativity and it makes it seem as if it is condoned or at least tolerated. I don’t see Christians even trying to use the public forum to say,”But this is not the way we all are. We don’t condone bashing lgbts. We don’t all hate Muslims. This is not what what we were taught. We were taught to love people. There has been no love. No one is standing up for people and Trump has told people it is okay to hate. What I see on facebook makes me cringe. We all need to come together and help put a stop to it. Our country is being ripped down the middle.

        There will never be a world religion. The times it had been tried ended up with many dead. No one can make people believe something they don’t. Respect and understand goes much farther. But I think people are afraid to do that and fear it would be blasphemy if they studied another religion, our be afraid of being swayed. But if people understood more about other faiths they would probably be less afraid of them. People see only one side of the Muslim faith, and they are vicious. They don’t see the other side. Burn the Mosques. People should stand up for those being persecuted regardless of their faith or sexual preferences because they are people first.

        There are many sects of Christianity, Buddhism, too. Most think of the Dalai Lama or Zen because that is in the media, but it is very different from the Buddhism I practice. I have no Buddha statutes. We don’t worship the man.We worship the teachings. The man alive today who heads our organization, but is not idolized is Daisaku Ikeda. If you wanted to read about him that would be be a good introduction. To Nichiren Buddhism – not for purposes to convert, but for understanding. Only when we can have open dialogues can the people come together.

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        1. Sonni, I love learning and consider myself a life-long learner, so I will definitely explore more. I agree with 90% of what you’ve written, but I caution you to understand that perception is not always reality. If you’re watching mainstream media, don’t expect to see Christians or any faith-based believers advocating for non-violence. You will see just the opposite. You will also see extremists on both sides like member of Westboro Baptist Church and the KKK. The rest of us serve in our respective communities. Unless you live where we live, you won’t see that. Please consider the big picture. I won’t discuss it further, but I do appreciate hearing your perspective, and I respect fairness.

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