Be purposeful. Live in the moment.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1 Faith has a way of keeping alive the belief that a greater and deeper level of living is possible. "For he that comes to God must believe that He is and that he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him." Hebrews 11:6.

Faith does not guarantee that a rewarding life will be achieved by simply believing. Why? Because "Faith without works is dead." James 2:14. Action is required. My quest is for a quality of input that expresses itself in full appreciation of all that God has deemed life to be. Faith assures us that life can be fulfilling and profitable (not monetarily;necessarily), but, that is possible as well. It's there for the grasping. You have to get up and be about living with your eyes, your ears, and your heart open and receptive.

Trust me, I am an individual who lives by faith. However, that faith is so guarded that I sometimes squeeze out the component that is necessary for faith to be fully effective. That is trust. I have been guilty of living in survival mode; anticipating that "life is short and full of trouble, (Job 14:1), and that somehow by being extra cautious, not taking risks, playing it safe, somehow trouble would not come my way. Of course, worrying and anticipating problems has not prevented a single problem or hardship from touching my life. Rather, when confronted with such harsh realities, God has been faithful to walk with me and in some instances has carried me through. I see that my own actions prevented me from living an abundant life. Further, I was standing still. No more. I do not know what tomorrow holds, but I know who holds tomorrow. I am trusting Him with it.

I just returned from a cruise last week. It is thought provoking that one can be in a place that is full of activities, life and fun and yet not experience any of it. The ship docked in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. There were two options open to me. I could remain on the ship or get off the ship and participate in the one of the excursions available. In my search of living mindset, I decided that I was going to get off the ship and get involved in doing something. I got my courage up and climbed the Dunn's River Falls, a well known waterfall in Jamaica. The water was gushing rapidly, and some of the rocks were slippery. I had to be present, move with purpose and pay strict attention in order to stay alive, "literally." Wow! What an exhilarating and exhausting experience! You would have thought that I had climbed Mount Everest! I was totally elated and beaming with a feeling of accomplishment. I felt so alive!

I started thinking about all the mental energy that it took to get my mind and body to move in this direction. It's no wonder I fall short in the living life to its fullest department. Now that I am open to examining life, I can see clearly that I have to pump up the interest and energy volume in order to enhance the living experience overall. I also have to be aware of the people in my life and take the time and effort to be present with and for them. The next stop on the ship; Labadee, Haiti. You best believe, I got off the ship!

Remember:

1. Faith sets the foundation for us to believe that we can live.

2. Trusting God relieves us of the pride and the burden of believing that we are in control. "Cast your cares on the Lord and

He will sustain you." Psalm 55:22

3. Get up, get out, get involved. Try something different.

4. Live out loud, on purpose.

Here's to being alive and living each moment with purpose!

Yours, Yvette