Part 2: What is an extraordinary life?

Welcome to Hustle in Faith. This podcast is dedicated to helping you find your trail to a happier healthier you by discussing topics regarding Christianity, health & wellness, beauty & so much more! I’m your host Tosha Johnson.

This is Episode 84. This is part 2 in the What is the extraordinary life series? So be sure to go back and listen to part 1 and check out the journal I created that inspired this series called Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Women of Faith: A 3 Month Guide to Prayer and Gratitude that is available for sale on Amazon.

In today’s episode, we are going to discuss 6 of the 12  attributes that we must embody in order to position ourselves to live an extraordinary life. We’ve got a lot to cover in this episode so let’s jump right in!

Love

To get the full benefit of the love attribute, we need to view love from a parent/child relationship. This way we can get a better understanding of God’s love towards us. God is our parent. Just like a physical parent provides and protects their child, God does the same through His word. God created Scriptures so He could explain to us the meaning of life while guiding us to grow into Christ’s likeness. 

In order to accomplish this feat discipline must be involved. Whether we know it or not, discipline is a part of love. When a good parent loves their child, they will use discipline in order to try and deter their child from wrongdoings. Well, God is a good parent and this is why He does the same thing. When we persist in misbehaving, then consequences for our actions (“chastening of the Lord; a.k.a. discipline”) will come into play. 

At this point and time, we need to keep in memory that our chastening (“discipline”) is done out of love. God said, “. . . As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten.” (Rev 3:19). The book of Proverbs (3:10-12) echos these words by saying, “. . . My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor detest His correction; For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights. Therefore be zealous and repent.”

Joy 

This is an attribute that oftentimes causes the most confusion. Many of the trials we endure will not make sense. Nonetheless, we are told to count it all joy (James 1: 2-8). 

In order to see the joy in our trials, we must have faith that God knows what He is doing and that He will turn our trials into a victory of a lifetime. The only way we can view our situation from the correct standpoint is to stop allowing our emotions to dictate our outlook on life or dictate our actions regarding the matter.

Allowing our emotions to lead us especially when they are not properly trained with the word of God usually leads us to questioning God’s ability and doubting His intentions.  When we allow our weak emotions to guide us; especially, during difficult times, we lose faith and start to think that God does not have the ability to handle our situation. 

Thinking with our distorted emotions, we take matters into our own hands and mess things up worse then they were before. It is at this point and time that we cannot count it all joy. Whenever we go outside of the will of God, we will not be able to count our trials and tribulations as joy. God will not participate in our sinful acts. Therefore, He will not turn our situation into a dream of a lifetime.

In order to count our situation as joy so that God can turn it into a dream of a lifetime, we must NOT allow our distorted feelings to lead us. We have to allow the word of God tell us how to feel and think. When we align our emotions to the Word of God, then we’ll see our situation change and blessings materialize in our life.

Peace

Peace is an attribute that everyone wants and needs in order to enjoy the abundant life Christ came to give us (Joh 16:32; 10:10).  Although peace is what we need and seek, many of us are not willing to put forth the effort to attain Christ’s peace. To experience a peace that surpasses all understanding requires us to focus on the word of God and NOT our circumstances. 

Focusing on God’s word in the midst of our troubles means that we are daily reading, meditating, and properly applying the word of God to our life.  In doing so, Christ will give us a peace that surpasses all understanding. Going outside of God’s word in order to resolve our situation is the reason why many of us do not have Christ’s peace.

The life of King Solomon demonstrates that although we may have riches and possessions without peace (one of the major attributes of Christ), we cannot experience the abundant life. 

Patience

God sometimes allows challenges/storms in our life in order to help us to develop patience. Patience is another attribute of Christ that will strengthen us so we can work within God’s timing. 

We will never know what we are capable of if we do not learn how to handle resistances we encounter in life. 

Instead of asking God to remove our obstacles we should be asking Him to give us the strength, courage, knowledge, and wisdom we need in order to develop patience in the midst of our circumstances. It is patience that keep us from working outside of God’s timing. Whenever we go outside of God’s timing, we  delay and even derail our destiny; which is the plan and purpose God has for our life.

In order to experience the abundant life that Christ came to give us, we must develop patience. Patience works closely with faith. Having these two attributes actively working within our thought life is what helps us to see God’s presence in and throughout our life. Patience helps us to develop the confidence we need to wait on God. In doing so, we will know that God is with us and is willing to help us overcome the obstacles Satan has set in our path. 

Kindness

Kindness is putting God’s love into action. In Luke 10:25-29 we’re told about the story of the Good Samaritan. A man was traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho and he was robbed. The robbers left this man for half dead. A priest and a Levite both came down the same road and went on the other side. A Samaritan saw the man and helped him. The Samaritan bandaged the man and even put Him up in an inn. The Samaritan saw someone in need and He took the necessary actions to satisfy the need.

Demonstrating kindness means that we do not just sit on the sidelines and watch people suffer. God wants us to actually help those who are in need. Good intentions don’t benefit anyone. Only when actions are performed will those good intentions bring the kindness of God into reality. Showing the kindness of the Lord means that we will not be unfruitful in the work of our Lord Jesus Christ. We will treat people the way God treats us.

Goodness (generosity) 

People automatically jump to the conclusion of providing financial assistance when they think of the word ‘need.’ Many of us fail to realize that there are many ways we can show generosity toward others. Regardless of our status in life, everyone can show generosity toward others through prayer, wise counselling, etc. 

One of the best ways that we can demonstrate generosity is praying that the person in need be given the Holy Spirit for guidance and help during their time of need. Asking God to give someone the Holy Spirit to help them is better than giving someone money. If the person praying is in good standing with Christ, we need only to ask for Christ intervention in a situation and it is done. 

In fact Christ said, “Ask and it will be given to you . . . knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”

To show that our prayers will be answered Christ stated, “Which of you fathers if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 11:12-14).

In order for the above prayer to manifest, the person being prayed for must be exerting energy to help themselves (2 Thes 3:10). In other words, we are not to reward the fearfulness and laziness of others.

What we discussed today are the first 6 of 12 attributes that we need to attain in order to live an extraordinary life. We will discuss the remaining attributes in the next episode. 

Thanks so much for listening to today’s episode. Don’t forget to download the free goal setting planner and grateful notes on the website. If you enjoy Hustle in Faith’s content, please consider becoming a supporter by donating to help offset the cost of producing this show.Be sure to connect with us on Facebook and Pinterest. Remember, if you’re everything to everyone then you risk being no one. You never know who will inspire, see you in the next episode!

Part 1: What is an extraordinary life?

Welcome to Hustle in Faith. This podcast is dedicated to helping you find your trail to a happier healthier you by discussing topics regarding Christianity, health & wellness, beauty & so much more! I’m your host Tosha Johnson.

Welcome to Hustle in Faith. This podcast is dedicated to helping you find your trail to a happier healthier you by discussing topics regarding Christianity, health & wellness, beauty & so much more! I’m your host Tosha Johnson.

This is Episode 83. When I decided to discuss this topic it turned out to be a lot more material than what I bargained for so this is going to be a 4 part series. Be sure to check out the journals I created that inspired this series :

Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Women of Faith: A 3 Month Guide to Prayer and Gratitude

Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Men of Faith: A 3 Month Guide to Prayer and Gratitude

Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Adults & Teens: A 3 Month Guide to Prayer and Gratitude

All right, so let’s get into this series…

What is the extraordinary life?

It doesn’t take a genius to see that we live in a very troubled world. I barely even watch the news anymore, because it’s too depressing and frustrating. While thinking about previous conversations I have had with other people and myself, I was reminded of how we can live an extraordinary life in such a sinful world. 

The answer typically given is, “Just follow Christ (John 10:10).” This answer may be obvious to the person who said it but incredibly vague to the recipient if you don’t know what an extraordinary life is and what the blueprint/game plan is in obtaining such a life.


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No one purposefully sets out to live a mediocre life. We all had dreams and aspirations when we were kids and then we got older and succumbed to the mental attitude “I just want to survive.” We allowed the negative mindset of those we chose to surround ourselves with and the negative circumstances we encounter in life to dampen our spirits, our desires, and our zeal for the extraordinary life. 

Sadly, many of us become so distraught with life that we don’t even have the zeal to pursue the answer of identifying what an extraordinary life looks like and how to make it happen for us. Although we can’t stop negative people and circumstances from entering our lives, but we can stop them from holding us “hostage” in our pursuit to be happy. In other words, we can change our mindset so that our goal is to thrive and not just survive in this sinful world.

Just so we are all on the same page, an extraordinary life is when we transform our lives to the point that we embody and reflect the attributes of Christ. To help us to understand what an extraordinary life looks like, I will discuss a few attributes of Christ. There are many more listed throughout the Bible that I will not be able to discuss due to time constraints. However, the majority of the ones that I will focus on are listed in Gal 5: 21, Matthew 18, James 1,  1 Cor 16 and Deuteronomy 31:6.

Attaining ALL of Christ’s attributes are important.  However, I’m going to focus on what I consider to be the top 12. Nine times out of ten, if you’re able to obtain these attributes, it will reduce the time it takes to gain the other remaining attributes.

These attributes are:

  1. Love 
  2. Joy 
  3. Peace
  4. Patience 
  5. Kindness
  6. Goodness (generosity) 
  7. Faithfulness
  8. Gentleness
  9. Self-Control
  10. Forgiving
  11. Wise 
  12. Courage

For the next episode, we are going to take a closer look at these attributes. It’s going to be an uphill battle that we will have to fight throughout our lives to obtain them, but it’s worth the fight.

Thanks so much for listening to today’s episode. Don’t forget to download the free goal setting planner and grateful notes on the website. If you enjoy Hustle in Faith’s content, please consider becoming a supporter by donating to help offset the cost of producing this show.

Be sure to connect with us on Facebook and Pinterest. Remember, if you’re everything to everyone then you risk being no one. You never know who you will inspire, see you in the next episode! 

Are you running away from your blessings?

One of my favorite movies and by the way my favorite play is the Lion King. Even though it’s a children’s movie, there are so many lessons that can be learned from Simba.

One of the saddest scenes in the movie is where Scar kills Simba’s dad. Scar basically tricks Simba into thinking he caused his father’s death and the only thing left for Simba to do was run away. See Scar had to convince Simba to run away so Simba could run away from his blessing of becoming king.

Satan uses this same tactic today. He bombards us with a variety of “tests” that are meant to instill negativity so we can run away from the blessings that God has in store from us.

The most frustrating thing about the situation is that God will NOT allow us to move forward in life until we pass the test He places before us. Regardless of how depressed you may feel or how bleak your circumstances may be, God has a plan for your life (Jer 29: 11-14).

Even if you have been on the run for years, you can still redeem your blessings just like Simba did, but you have to be willing to do the following:

  1. Surround yourself with positive people who will uplift you.  Misery loves company. You’re already feeling down and out, so don’t seek counsel from people who aren’t heading in the direction that you want to go in life.
  2. Admit when you are wrong. One of the main reasons Simba ran away is because he felt guilty. Mufasa, his father, warned him not to go into that part of the land. Simba had no business being in that area.

There are plenty of times in my life where I couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t moving forward until I took a look at where I was and who I chose to surround myself with.  Early on in my career, I chose to go to lunch with co-workers who would often attempt to wear me down about why I didn’t do or believe in certain things. Now I’ve never been one of those Christians that are forcing Jesus down your throat or praising God every 5 minutes.

However, if they asked me to happy hour so I could go get drunk with them (by the way, these are their actual words not mine), I would always say no. By the way, I always thought that the term “happy hour” was an oxymoron because getting drunk seems like an incredibly depressing way to spend your free time.

Anyway, I would always say. “No, I don’t drink,” which led to this whole long discussion about my faith. Now even though I was not trying to change them, they thought that I was “weird” and tried to change me. Again, we live in a backward world. I never understood why my choice to remain sober was an issue, but anyway, I allowed my insecurity to get the best of me and compromised by going to lunch with these co-workers.

God already showed and told me, “Tosha, they don’t accept who you are, leave them alone.”  Yet, I chose to unnecessarily put myself in situations that caused me pain. I was constantly feeling defeated until I started to do my next point…

3.) Remember who I am in God’s eyes. I got tired of feeling defeated. My co-workers were doing everything in their power to emotionally bully me. Constantly blaming me for their own shortcomings, critiquing my work or choice of words, giving me extra busy work, accusing me of not being a team player because I refused to do their job at the last minute, not wanting to sit by me in meetings or giving me weird/ unfriendly looks.

All of this happened because I was truthful in how I responded to their questions, in why I didn’t want to do, believe or behave in certain ways because I was a Christian. Satan goes out of his way to get you to forget who you are.

Simba forgot that he came from a royal background until he took the time to remember the advice that his dad gave him and then received further confirmation from Nala which gave him the confidence to do #4 which is to fight back.

4.) Fight back. I don’t care how far gone you think your life may be. You can redeem the time you have left by fighting back. Don’t accept the negativity that others project onto you. Life and death are truly in the power of the tongue. You have to be willing to fight for your happiness in this world.

In order to win the battle, you must allow God to lead you in your quest to fight back. You’re going to start seeing how those evil people’s deeds and thoughts don’t affect you anymore. Don’t get me wrong, it will still make you angry and you do have the right to defend yourself  (The Bible tells us in Eph 4:26 … “to be ye angry and sin not…”) but their actions won’t leave you feeling trapped and depressed. The reason many of us feel this way is because we know deep down we’re living settled for lifestyles.

Simba knew he wasn’t meant to wander aimlessly through life. He knew he was meant to rule. He got tired of living away from his family. However, he couldn’t step into his destiny until he learned to control his mind. I was trying to fight Satan using my own strength. Once, I went to God and asked Him how to fight back I was able to start winning my battles and defeat those demons.

5. Last but not least, you will finally obtain and maintain your goals through humility. Simba was mindful of all the troubles he wen through in life in order to get to the point in time where he became king. He didn’t allow his newfound power to get to his head. He shared his knowledge and experiences with others.

We must let our light shine as well. There’s nothing new under the sun. There will always be evil in this world, but through God’s grace and power we can defeat them because it is the circle of life.

What is your purpose in life?

Podcast Link: https://anchor.fm/dashboard/episode/e3qmqn

I’ve had some interesting events happen to me within the past couple of weeks that have led me to think about my second act in life and business. I’ve been wondering more and more lately what my purpose is in life. God said in Jer 29:11-12:

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare, and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.  Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you.

It caused me to reflect on some of the situations that I have been in that have been incredibly unfair. It’s caused me to seriously wonder if maybe He hadn’t gotten around to creating my plan yet.

However, after speaking with my mom (she always brings things back into perspective for me) I realized that the reason I was feeling this way is because I was mixing up what society deems to be my purpose in life with what God’s purpose is for my life.

Society’s purpose for me

  1. Society’s purpose is to focus on our career, finding a spouse, making a lot of money, buying a big house and having children.

Yet, even if you achieved all the aforementioned, it will still not bring you peace and happiness. In case you don’t believe me, think about how many celebrities you believe are truly happy. Not many.

The majority of people spend their lives chasing waterfalls. They jump into relationships, careers, etc. because this is what society wants you to do. This will instill Satan’s negative traits inside of you in the event that you aren’t able to attain them. Then you’re left wondering, “What’s wrong with me?”In reality, there’s nothing wrong with attaining or not attaining these things.

The real issue is when you place things such as this above God’s plan for your life. If you really want to find out what your purpose is in life, then you need to get in touch with God’s word. We can only obtain the attributes of Christ when we conform to Christ’s likeness. Only in Christ can we have attributes such as love, joy, peace and happiness.

God’s purpose for me

  1. Our real purpose in life is to grow into Christ-likeness.

When we focus on Christ we can enjoy the abundant life that He came to give us. In other words, Christ came to give us a little bit of heaven while we’re still on earth. The only way we can conform to Christ’s likeness, is to be truthful to everyone we know, be ready and willing to fight whatever battle God requests us to help Him fight. We can only do this by staying properly dressed in our armor.

Once again, our purpose in life is to conform to Christ’s likeness and help others to do the same. In other words, throughout our way of life and God’s word, we are to teach others the truth.  Therefore, we are not to go along with people when they are wrong.

We are to firmly tell them the truth even if we must stand alone in the conversation. We are not to lie to people so we can keep their friendship or so that we can be a part of the crowd. God already warned us that we would be persecuted for following Him (1 Pet 4:12). However, if we draw near to Him we will find the much sought after wisdom and peace that will eventually lead us to our purpose.

Lessons I have learned as a Group Fitness Instructor

In today’s Random Thoughts Thursday segment, I wanted to share some lessons that I have learned since I became a Group Fitness Instructor.

Taking my passion for Zumba and fitness to the next level has been an amazing experience. However, that’s because I made sure to keep in mind the following four things in mind.

Special thanks to the following AMAZING Zumba instructors: Tiffany, Sabina, Jennifer, Sabrina, MarieAnne and Kristina. These ladies have in played a role in my Zumba journey. Thanks for being awesome! 🙂

Thanks so much for listening to today’s episode. Don’t forget to download the goal setting planner and grateful notes on the website. If you enjoy Hustle in Faith’s content (https://hustleinfaith.com), please consider becoming a supporter by donating to help offset the cost of producing this show. 

Be sure to connect with us on our Facebook and Pinterest. Remember, if you’re everything to everyone then you risk being no one. You never know who you may inspire.

See you in the next episode! In order to be notified when new content is available, please be sure to subscribe to my podcast on Anchor, iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify and Google Play Music.