Month: June 2017

Avoiding Temptation

One of the surest things in life is that we will be subjected to temptation. Is it a sin to be tempted? Nope. But it is a gateway to getting in serious trouble with God and our fellow human beings. There are so many kinds of temptation but it really falls into three types: Lust of the eyes, Lust of the Flesh and Pride of Life.

May I present some examples?

Lust of the eyes is when you look at a red Ferrari and you say I want that even though it will bankrupt your family. Lust of the Flesh is intense craving for the chocolate at the Ferrari dealership. Pride of Life is boastfully driving around in that red car with a “you should be jealous of me” attitude. Those are highly exaggerated example – but it helps drive the point.

The good thing is, there are ways to avoid temptation, and here’s a few of them:

Avoid Situations

If you know you will be tempted, avoid it. In driving for example, give way to speeding vehicles and avoid hogging the lane if your speed is 10 mph less than everyone else. Keep 5-10 car lengths away from the car in front of you. You’ll encounter less reckless drivers this way.  If someone cuts you off, do not react in an offensive manner.

Distance

One of best ways to avoid temptation is to keep our distance. For example, if you tend to overeat chocolate, avoid going to the chocolate counter on the Ferrari dealership.

A Friend Indeed

The right friends can help you choose a good path in life. Friends that give you constructive criticism are real friends. Avoid “yes men (or women)” or those who kiss up to you because they want favors. Avoid friends or colleagues with bad habits so you don’t start emulating them.

Accountability

I remember a pastor ask me someone once to go with him to a ministry in a foreign country. He said he just need someone to be around him for accountability. I thought that was a good technique in walking the straight and narrow path.

Troubled People

Avoid contact with people that seems to like trouble. Avoid obnoxious people that are legends in their own mind. Don’t think you can change bad people into good people because good people almost always turn bad instead.

Remove Alluring Things

If you have an object that may tempt you, get rid of it. Don’t worry about its cost. Having a clear conscience is better.

Be A Coward

Being a coward is good when it comes to temptation. By not acting on a bad decision, we tend to preserve the status quo and avoided hurt feelings for ourselves and others.

Procrastinate

One of the ways to avoid impulsive buying or instant gratification is to sleep on a decision. Some people even use the “30-day” rule. If they want something, they wait 30 days. If they still need it (not “want” it), then they buy it.

Prayers

This is the most powerful of all. God promised us that “you will not be tempted beyond your ability” (1 Corinthians 10:13). One of our favorite prayers states “and lead us not into temptation”. Temptation will be around – but we can flee from it.

I hope and pray that this post will be of help to all of you.

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Elimination Round

I am sure you’ve heard of Bruce Lee. A famous quote from him: “It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.” I couldn’t agree more especially with the constant bombardment by advertisers and big time media outlets about how we should upgrade to the next model because our previous widget is over three months old.

The process of elimination does not apply to material things only but that’s a good place to start. I have an example below of a cyclist with too many bicycles (I’m one of them – but still haven’t gotten the time to advertise my bike for sale).

So I put on my thinking cap and came up with a few. I’m sure some of you can come up with more, but hey – whatever you come up with should apply to your own life. I already have my own personal list of things I need to eliminate or decrease.

What can we eliminate?

Bad habits. I could name a few but why bother. I know some of us think we don’t have any but if you ask an honest loved one or friend, they’ll tell you the truth. Once you find out the truth about who you are from other’s perspective – set yourself free and change for the better.

Excess materials. I spend a little time reading comments in bicycle forums. Some people pride themselves in having 10 bicycles in their “stable”. They don’t ask me for money to buy their bicycles but I feel that 10 is too much. If only one person is riding it, why have 10? Does he drag the other 9 while riding to make the workout harder? How about me? I’ll sell at least one bike next month.

Overanalyzing. When we think about tasks or passions, sometimes we spend too much time overthinking that we become paralyzed into inaction. If there is a project, and plans and budget have been worked out in paper, the best thing to do is start. Worst thing is having too many plans, but zero execution.

Entertainment.  The fall of the Roman Empire was due to excessive entertainment. The Babylonian Empire got conquered when they were in a drunken party while the Persians drained the Euphrates River (which passes through Babylon) so their soldiers can walk underneath the fortress walls. Things you can take off: Watching Sports, Playing expensive sports, any high end this and high end that.

What do we get out of our elimination round?  In a word, time. Now we have time to do the things that really matter, like: following our passion, getting some side passive income, studying things we love, spending times with loved ones, reading, sleeping, exercising.  We will have a higher quality life and in the process, save or earn more money, maybe. We’ll have a clearer mind and a better perspective in life. We may end up helping people more. What’s not to like?

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Pig Out

This is going to be a short one I hope – because we’re talking about a very popular food choice. I don’t think we need introduction to pork meat. I liked to eat pork years ago but after learning about it from nutritionists (and Leviticus), I finally quit eating it. At one point, it was even advertised as “the other white meat” and so I thought it was as healthy as chicken breast without the skin.

Years ago, I was in a three week detox diet. The two doctors that helped me in my diet conversion are both vegan. One of the doctors told me to avoid meat at all cost. If I had to eat meat, eat lamb. What about pork? absolutely not!

Why not pork?

I did some research and I was going to give you details but it will get too boring or sound like a scientific essay. I also did not want to gross you out. I promise you that if you do your own research about pork, you will get disgusted with it.

Here’s some quick explanations (I tried to make it to sound cleaner than the articles I’ve read):

Pigs harbor a bunch of parasites. Some of which are hard to kill even with high heat, spices or vinegar. Those parasites happen to live in humans too and it can go from pigs to human or human to pigs.

Hogs are drugged heavily. It’s used for growth and antibiotics. Some chemicals are given to give a nice color to the meat. There’s even a pig farm here in the U.S. that uses chemical supplements to the pig’s diet. That toxic chemical is banned in 160 other countries but not here.

Bacon and sausages does not look like their pork anymore, right? But they’re even worse because they have nitrates and nitrites added to preserve and add a pleasing color. Those additives increase greatly the risk for cancer.

Some pig farms are very crowded. They live in among other pigs and their body waste are not properly disposed. Some are even restricted to a very small space that they can hardly move and their job is to breed over and over. When they get slaughtered some of them die a slow death.

Pigs digest their food in about four hours. Cows in 24 hours. Pigs don’t sweat also. This means the toxins that they ingest stay in their body. Those toxins (along with parasites, bacteria and viruses) are passed on to the pork eater.

I hope I didn’t gross out any of you, dear readers. You don’t have to believe me. In fact, I hope that you do your own research because then you’ll get better informed. But one of my favorite health tips is: avoid eating pork totally. You’ll be healthier!

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