Live your best life now.

Live your best life now.

How much time do you have left? Exactly. You don’t know. All you and I can do is plan. Have you been planning to one day live your best life? Have you been slaving away, foregoing fun just to live later? If so, stop it right now!

It is time to do inventory on how you spend your time which equates to how you spend your life. Make no mistake about it. You only live once. You have got to figure out how to work and connect in such a way that you are taking full advantage of your time. Since it is a resource that is unreplenishable, you have to use it wisely. Makes sense right?

Now, how does one truly live? It’s different for each of us. But, what I do know is you and I can live better than we do today, be better than we are today and love better. It’s a choice. So, choose to get up, get out, and LIVE! Live now. Later is not promised.

Not sure where to start?

#doitanyway

The Eligibility List

The Eligibility List

By: Bryce Runge

 

The definition of Eligible is:

 

Fit or proper to be chosen; worthy of choice; desirable:    or

Meeting the stipulated requirements, as to participate, compete, or work; to be qualified!!!

 

These words, Not Eligible, Not approved, Not Qualified all has been thrown in my face for many years on many different occasions and I am sure all of you have experienced hearing these words as well. Some examples would be like trying to get a loan and being turned down “Not approved” or applying for a job and “not being qualified” and the two words that really stuck with me over the past decade were “NOT ELIGIBLE”

When I set out on my football journey 12 years ago, I didn’t quite realize what I was walking into. I knew that I had a dream and a goal to return to the football field and by the way when I say return to the football field, I mean there was a 6 year gap from when I played in high school to when I enrolled in junior college.

After playing my first year of at Fullerton Junior College I was offered a full scholarship to South Carolina and to play for College Football Hall of Fame coach, Lou Holtz, but I wasn’t “ELIGIBLE” mainly in part due to my poor decision making while in high school, barely graduating and not taking the SAT’s etc.

I put that disappointment behind me and went on to play another year at Fullerton and ended up getting a full athletic scholarship to the University of Hawaii. I then made a bad decision to leave early and declare for the 2005 NFL draft. Went through pro day, did well, and shortly after, was flown into Buffalo with the hopes of signing an NFL contract…turns out I wasn’t “ELIGIBLE”.

I’m going to skip over the details for now as to why.

A year later, All American Football league came on the scene and I was invited to work out for “Team Texas”…turns out I wouldn’t have been “ELIGIBLE” and I’ll spare the details on that as well, ha ha!!!

With all the “Not Eligible”, “Not Approved” and “Not Qualified” comments that I was faced with clearly had left me with MANY painful disappointments. I couldn’t and I can’t explain WHY I wasn’t in the NFL and quite honestly everyone around me felt the same way…except for God, because certainly my plans weren’t aligned with His and I didn’t know any better because I didn’t have a relationship with Christ during those years of my life.

In Jerimiah 29:11 we can learn and grasp firmly to His words

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, Plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you Hope and a Future”

As your relationship with Christ strengthens and builds you begin to see things clearer and have a better understanding. However, if you don’t have that relationship, you can’t see anything beyond your OWN desires and then end up banging our heads against the wall trying to figure out why you aren’t eligible, qualified or approved.

In 2 Corinthians 3:4-5: We are to be confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ. It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God.

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The other morning when I was in prayer, begging God to make things right for my son and I and explaining to Him how much it hurts when I’m on the phone with my son and when he starts to cry and say “Daddy, I miss you …Daddy, I want to be with you”

God quickly intervened and said    “Child, I have missed you too”  and when he said that , I literally crumbled and tears poured down my face and it hit me like a ton of bricks, on my knees in tears I asked “God, forgive me of my sins and forgive me for not caring about You for 35 years”

When my son says “I miss you daddy”, I have a better understanding of what God must have felt all those years when I could care less about Him and MORE of others and their approval.

I ran around doing things without a care in the world…and I definitely could care less about God. So every time I put that illegal substance in my body, the multiple times I got behind the wheel heavily under the influence, every girl I became intimate with, the life that I agreed to murder with abortion, everything I stole and every jaw I broke because some guy looked at me wrong… proved that I had NO INTEREST in God. The one who gave me life, the one who created me and this is how I thanked Him; this is how I HONORED Him?

So I question why? How on earth did I escape from all the bad I was doing and how did I not end up dead or in prison, because those that I aligned with, those that I was trying to get on the eligibility list with… guess what, they either ended up dead or prison!

And through it ALL, He was there watching as I disappointed Him, So why God? Why did you spare me?

And again he constantly reminds me

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, Plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you Hope and a Future”

I can only imagine what God was thinking when I was out running WILD, but if I were to come up with something it might go like this:

“Oh child, I am sorry that you feel the need to do what you are doing, it hurts me to see the things of which you do, the need to seek eligibility elsewhere, the need to seek others approval, but know that I love you and I forgive you. Besides, there will come a day, when you hit your knees crying for me, to save you, to heal you, to forgive you and when you do AND you will…I will answer your prayers….because, I LOVE YOU”

I wanted so badly to be “Eligible” and I sought after approval like there was NO TOMORROW. That outside approval is literally an addiction; we work to get approval and when we do, we seek more and more because it feels so good and in the meantime, we become ungrateful, disobedient and self-centered. In 2 Timothy 3:2-5 we can really get a clear picture of this type of behavior “people will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people”.

True freedom never comes until we fully realize that we don’t need to struggle to get from others what GOD so freely gives us.

Knowing that God loves us, knowing that WE ARE ELIGBLE, WE ARE QUALIFED and WE ARE APPROVED tells us all we need to know and as long as we have Gods approval, we don’t NEED any one else’s approval and in case we forget and lose sight of that, remember that Jesus came and said in John 14:27

“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

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God wants our security to be in Him, not in anything else. He is NOT dubious, for he is certain and sure.

In 2 Timothy 2:19,

God’s truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription: “The LORD knows those who are his,” and “All who belong to the LORD must turn away from evil.

God knows that we are not perfect and will never expect us to be either, but what he does expect of us can be found in

Isaiah 55:6-13(MSG)

Seek God while he’s here to be found,     pray to him while he’s close at hand. Let the wicked abandon their way of life     and the evil their way of thinking. Let them come back to God, who is merciful,     come back to our God, who is lavish with forgiveness.

“I don’t think the way you think.     The way you work isn’t the way I work.”          “For as the sky soars high above earth,     so the way I work surpasses the way you work,     and the way I think is beyond the way you think. Just as rain and snow descend from the skies     and don’t go back until they’ve watered the earth, Doing their work of making things grow and blossom,     producing seed for farmers and food for the hungry, So will the words that come out of my mouth     not come back empty-handed. They’ll do the work I sent them to do,     they’ll complete the assignment I gave them.

 “So you’ll go out in joy,     you’ll be led into a whole and complete life. The mountains and hills will lead the parade,     bursting with song. All the trees of the forest will join the procession,     exuberant with applause. No more thistles, but giant sequoias,     no more thorn bushes, but stately pines— Monuments to me, to God,     living and lasting evidence of God.”

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I will tell you this, that in Galatians 6:9 we are taught to “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

We must continue to seek God, continue to place Him first in our lives. Know that we are here because God has a purpose for our lives; He has GREAT things in store for us!!! We must understand that we have HIS approval and we don’t need to struggle with getting on anyone else’s “Eligibility List”.

Have an AMAZING DAY!!!

Bryce Runge
About five years ago, one of my goals was to speak to individuals and to share my story and to eventually begin writing my book, but five years ago I wasn’t in any condition to share that story. Looking back on it now, I realize the timing of it had to be right and it had to be God’s timing. I had to endure a lot, overcome many obstacles in order for it to work out and more importantly I’ve had to allow God to be the author, not me. Therefore, my purpose is to use my experiences, to use my story to truly glorify Christ and to do so verbally with those I come into contact with, through my speaking engagements and in my writing.

Find Bryce at BryceRunge.com

5 Reasons to Do Nothing Today

5 Reasons to Do Nothing Today

We all know life is synonomous with busy especially for us moms (single and not). I have learned in the last few years, however, that being busy isn’t always being productive. So, recently, I decided to take a week off from my usual up “all night creating” while I was at a family reunion in Atlanta Well, I only touched my writing once (that was huge btw). Oh my gosh! It felt like I was living again. I mean not that I don’t have my fair share of “inserted” fun, but this was different. I had no “work” on my schedule. At all. I met so many new family members, got to sight see, and I got rest. Who knew rest was important! (Inserts chuckle)

So, I think you should learn from this self-professed busyer and take a break today. Come on. Try it! Here are 5 reSons I found in Atlanta.

Reason #1:
You will see life differently.
It’s sad, but I miss being present in the moment. I have so many goals that a lot of times I’m there physically but mentally I’m creating a list- to do. It felt good to breathe and see and touch life without a list to complete.

Reason #2:
You will enjoy things you forgot you liked.
So, working a lot had caused me to forget that I actually like to fall out laughing with family well into the wee hours of night. It was rejuvenating to connect like that. There was volleyball, kickball, dominoes, spades, etc. Fun! And, I was a part of it all.

Reason #3:
You will find rest.
In all my up all night action,I also rested. It was good for mind, body, and soul. I slept well and later than usual. Relationships were formed with old and new family members. I was able to relax and get to know everyone without the pressure of work on my mind. I had a calm and a peace talking to family.

Reason #4:
You will be recharged and find strength to dream again.
After taking my break and enjoying life, I came home ready to work again. I feel like I have more ideas and am even more creative. Doing nothing work related did me good.

Reason #5
You will find peace in the quiet.
There was a peace I grabbed onto in the sleeping hours that I can’t explain. It’s akin to the warm kitchen at grandma’s in the winter time with the table full of goodies on Christmas day.

Now, I’m sure your reasons will be different. But, this was my experience. What I do know is you won’t find them unless you give yourself the gift of nothing today. Be good to you.

Sure work needs doing. Find a good stopping place and Do It Anyway.

9 Lessons Life Has Taught Me

9 Lessons Life Has Taught Me

I have come into my own in my thirties. I know a lot of “twenty-somethings” dread the big 30, but it is truly a great time in life. I say this knowing that I am quickly approaching 40. Yet, I still have a few years before I get the “Oh Lordy, she’s 40” cake. But, in all seriousness, I am approaching a beautiful time in life. I want us as women to stop dreading getting older because we learn something valuable each year as we age. We get better with time in appearance, in wisdom, in our careers, and most importantly in parenting. So, I have compiled a list of 9 lessons I have learned in my own life. I believe they will resonate with you.

1. Take care of yourself.
I get better with time. I know you do, too. It’s just a fact that we are more beautiful and confident in our thirties. No longer a babe or a twenty-something finding her stride, we blossom into “grown woman”. I don’t about you, but I really found my fashion sense in my 30’s. I think I looked good in my 20’s but let’s face it, somethings need to be left in the past like midriffs being out and “too short” shorts. (Ikr) After my first child, I immediately felt ashamed of “short” anything. After all, I was a mom now. I really started eating better and wearing makeup (here and there) in my 30’s. I learned how to properly workout. Gone are the days of fine with no work. So, in short, take care of your skin, eat right, exercise, get rest, and leave the little clothes to the little girls. It will bless you now and later.
2. Be authentic.
I know who I am now. I feel like I have always known, yet I was not okay with being different. I was and still am “different”. I never ran with the crowd, never wanted to do the “cool” thing, and now I know that I made the right choice. I can without any qualms be authentic and stare any onlooker in the face and say “So what!”. Take it or leave it. I’m me and being me with my quirks is A-okay.
3. Chase your goals.
I know what I want to do in my career. I have always had a knack for talking. I’m an encourager, and I love to read. I’m curious and research is cool to me. None of those descriptions add up to Spanish teacher, but that’s what I do. I also do other things besides that like encourage single parents and that is a passion I know I’ll always chase along with a myriad if other things. Who says you have to do one thing? That dream that won’t die keeps nagging you for a reason. Chase it. It’ll free you.
4. Create the family you desire.
I know I want a whole family (mom and dad at the helm). I always knew this. I didn’t always make the choices that lined up with what I wanted. I know better now. In life and love, be courageous and ask. No, demand what you want. You’ll weed out who doesn’t belong and have room for who does. Amen.
5. Go when others do not see the path.
Sometimes people will think you’re nuts. That’s okay. That spark in you must be allowed to grow into passion. Chase it. You’ll be happy. When I left mortgages to be a Spanish teacher, my family said “for what?” Now, they can’t help but brag to people who could care less that I have my Masters. I didn’t do it for them. I did it for me. Be comfortable going alone. The rest will catch up.
6. Be brave.
I moved to Texas to chase a dream. It was the best move I ever made. I was fearless as a single mom with small boys. I was fearless because I had peace that God had opened that door. Be sensitive to the direction your life needs to go in, bite the bullet, and go.
7. Be available.
In your growing, chasing dreams and staying fabulous, be available to your babies. My years of working on my Masters are a blur and at the same time a joy. I say a blur because it was hard. A joy because Zi love learning and it’s a big accomplishment. I made it. My boys made it. But to say I was as present mentally as I should have been would be an understatement. Tired was the place I lived. I took breaks and had family time, but it was a time of sacrifice. I made a deal with them that they couldn’t do sports in those three years but after I finished they could. I made good on that promise. It just was not possible to do due to my taking three grad classes every semester and working full-time. I now see I was crazy. Lol! What was I thinking! Praise God we made it.
8. Being alone is better than being in the wrong relationship.
In love, you have to look out for you. Choose the best from the start and you can avoid some unnecessary lessons. I had to grow up in my twenties quickly as a single mom. I didn’t know how to date. But, Lord have I figured it out now! Simply put, If he does not bring peace to me and my house, he is not a good fit. He has to love me and my boys. We come together. No exceptions. I’d rather be alone than spend my precious time on a “temporary man”. Older women are attractive because we’ve figured out what we want and don’t want. Most importantly, we’re not afraid to say it.
9. Do It Anyway
This last lesson is key! Life is hard. Single parenting is hard. Building a company or chasing a dream will be hard. If it’s your dream, you owe it to yourself to see it to the end. Many may not come to help you, do it anyway. Do it alone, with tears in your eyes, broke, tired, hungry, but do it. You’ll find out how strong you are and that God really does make a way.

May what I’ve learned inspire you to keep going no matter what season you are in. Life truly is beautiful and you really rock! Remember that.

Kaydy