Jamaica is a blessed nation!

I just returned from a brief vacation in Jamaica.  I was so blessed to be there.  Please see below, the letter that I wrote to the Jamaica Observer.  Take some time to give thanks to God for our blessed country!

http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/letters/Jamaica-is-a-blessed-nation_13920875

Dear Editor,

It has been 20 years since I migrated to Canada from Jamaica. Every year that I have returned on vacation, I continue to feel the love and positive energy in this country and to see more and more progress and development.

In my experience, customer service in business places for the most part, is up to par and impressive. The quality of products and services is world class in most places. Generally speaking, the professionalism and civility that I witness and experience are outstanding. Shows in theatres, museums, cultural and entertainment activities reflect a progressively higher level of sophistication and technical competence. Added to this, the streets are clean and public spaces are a source of pride for all Jamaicans. I have stopped counting the number of Canadians who are repeat visitors to our island and who have nothing but good things to say about our tourism product, the quality of service and the friendliness and efficiency of Jamaicans.

Now I am fully aware that the continuing high levels of crime, poverty and corruption are unacceptable. I agree that as a nation, Jamaica could be in better shape. But I feel compelled to appeal to all Jamaicans to stop the unhealthy obsession with negative things while ignoring the tremendous potential for progress.

As a nation, we need to shift the collective consciousness away from blaming the politicians who we elect towards a consciousness that focuses on the real possibility for prosperity that is built on the foundations of the talent and expertise that currently exist in this nation.

There is compelling evidence that we are quite capable accelerating the rate of development and redressing the blight of crime and poverty here. The young principals of Mile Gully and Troy high schools who were featured on television this week, are fine examples of committed visionaries who will shape the future of this country through education. The discipline, order and excellent performance that we witnessed at Boys’ and Girls’ Champs prove that goals can be attained through discipline and persistent guidance of teachers, coaches and mentors. There is much more that I could say to support my conviction that we have so much more positive with which to work here than the negative factors that dominate public discussions that so often include the use of economic data to measure our progress as a nation.

We are truly a blessed nation. Regardless of the state of the economy and the many social problems that prevail, we have come a very, very long way since 1962.

My parting words are borrowed from Eric Donaldson’s Festival Song “Land of my birth” – “Some people say we are poor, but the progress you make is not always how rich you are!”

Give thanks for Jamaica, land we love!

Part 3 : Overcoming obstacles – The limitless potential of the child of God

This is the third in a series of blog posts on The Limitless Potential of the Child of God. In Part 2  I wrote about finding your purpose.   In this, the third and final part of the series, I speak about overcoming obstacles to the fulfilment of your purpose.

A SPIRITUAL PERSPECTIVE ON FAILURE & SHORTCOMINGS

From my own life experience, there have been times when I have failed tests, made mistakes in my job and I have “fallen short of the glory of God.”  Nonetheless, I can safely say that whatever pain I may have experienced is miniscule in comparison to the spiritual growth, the material prosperity and the new, relevant skills and talents that I have either gained or developed in each situation.  All of this consistently paves th way for me to achieve consecutively higher levels of spiritual consciousness and to live more abundantly.  God has never and will never put me in a situation to make me feel like a failure of feel that I am anything other than who he created me to be.  Everything that happens to me heightens my awareness of God’s purpose for my life and propels me to achieve my highest good.  Paul states that “He (God) who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion” (Philippians 1:6)  So this clearly means that there is always room for improvement and the need for more lessons to be learned, and it also means that there is no limit to my God-given potential.

I want to encourage you to grow in the awareness that every life experience – success or failure, adversity or prosperity – is worth having as long as we can understand that through it we are being propelled to a higher level of spiritual awareness and achievement.  Nothing can be more precious than the knowledge of Christ and the limitless power which is available to those of us who abide in Him.  This truth led Paul to affirm that “I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord.” (Philippians 3:8).

MAKING IT HAPPEN

Do not be daunted by apparent failure.  Take what you have learnt from each experience and move on to bigger and better things.  Abandon right now any doubt or disbelief in yourself.  Reject every suspicion that you will always have doubts or that you have limited abilities that prevent you from fulfilling God’s purpose for you here on earth.  You are one with God and endowed with the power of the Holy Spirit.  You are never separate from God.  In Him, you live, move and have your being (Acts 17:28).  Through God’s grace and power, you have access to His limitless supply of power, prosperity and success that God wills for you to have.  As Peter puts it, “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” (2 Peter 1:3).

Erase every negative thought of lack and limitation and integrate Paul’s words in your thoughts and speech “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).  This means that you can do all that God assigns you to do, not what you want to do that is not in God’s will.  So the statement that there is no limit to your God-given potential, is based on your understanding of God’s specific will and purpose for your life.

DILIGENCE

It is essential for us to realize that we have a duty to put our faith into action through diligent effort.  The diligent application of our talents, skills and abilities results in glory being given to God, and His blessings of spiritual and material prosperity.  In Proverbs 13:4,  we are told that ” He becomes poor who works with a slack and idle hand, but the hand of the diligent makes rich.”  Diligent and ambitious thoughts and actions lead to prosperity.  Again in Proverbs 21: 5, we are told that “The thoughts of the [steadily] diligent tend only to plenteousness,…”  We must apply as much diligent effort to the pursuit of material things as we do to gaining spiritual understanding and building up our faith as “But without faith it is impossible to please and be satisfactory to Him. For whoever would come near to God must [necessarily] believe that God exists and that He is the rewarder of those who earnestly and diligently seek Him [out].” (Hebrews 11:6).

It is a fact that those who work hard, achieve success, earn the respect of man and bring glory to God.

“Do you see a man diligent and skillful in his business? He will stand before kings;…”  (Proverbs 22:29)

“Let your light so shine before men that they may see your moral excellence and your praiseworthy, noble, and good deeds and recognize and honor and praise and glorify your Father Who is in heaven.”  (Matthew 5:16)

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