It took me many years to realize that I didn’t always have to wait around for life to happen to me.
It was a mindset that kept me in places that I knew well. My mind adapted to whatever my surroundings were at the time. I rationalized everything that was going on around me as being part of my life. In my time as a criminal, I was like a feather in the wind going wherever the wind took me. In those days I had one single goal in life, and that was to pull down cash.
Life began to change for me when I made a decision in 1996 to get out of the life I was leading. I was no longer going to just go where the wind blew me, I was making a path against the wind.
In 2005 when I had accomplished my return to a normal upstanding citizen, I set new goals for myself. I wanted to write a book, and make money legally. It turns out that was a terrible blueprint for my life.
I wrote the book and I became a successful businessman. Yet, I had a feeling that there had to be something more to life. I changed my plan again, deciding to pursue something I had a passion for instead of just working to make money. I also decided I wanted to take a stab at becoming a successful Hollywood screenwriter. So, I started training people at a gym and began working in Hollywood writing screenplays.
This one question kept coming up in my mind, what do I really want? I kept telling myself money and a good life. I knew that was not a real answer, it was a copout.
No matter how my plan changed, I still felt like I was missing my purpose. I did a lot of soul searching. My motto had always been “I am the master of my fate,” and felt like if I could just steer myself in the right direction, all would be well. It turns out that was the problem. I had to let go of my control over my life and put my trust in God’s plan for me. That might sound like giving up to some, but the truth is I had to work twice as hard once I decided not to always do what felt good to me, or what I wanted.
In Los Angeles, I had all the connections I could ever want. In Illinois, I have few. I live in the country. Yet, I have discovered that I have everything I need right here, and the few people I am close to enrich my life daily.
I finally know without a doubt what I want from life. I want to do God’s will, have a great relationship with my wife, improve the lives of those I have the opportunity to train and write books.
To have a great relationship with my wife, I have to constantly work on my attitude and my behavior. I tend to think I know everything, and the truth is I don’t.
I wrote my second book, and I have learned a lot of patience in the editing and rewriting stages.
I dropped the distractions of wanting money and fame, and have instead started living my life investing in people: the people I train and the relationships that are meaningful to me.
2 Corinthians 9:6
The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.