Step 4 to Finding Real Happiness: A Deep Spiritual Connection to God

Over the past few blogs, we have looked at how to find real happiness and joy. To read those blogs please click the links below:

Step One: If You Want to Find True Happiness, You Must Do Something

God Did Not Create Us to be Alone/Step 2: Find Someone

Step Three to Finding Real Happiness: Feed Your Mind

Today we will look at the fourth and final step: connect spiritually. The ultimate happiness in life is not discovered until we connect spiritually. The first part of a spiritual connection is to come to know and love Jesus. However, there is more to deeper spiritual connection than just knowing you will go to heaven when you die. There are several practices to help you grow into a deeper spiritual connection with God. There are four that are foundational to spiritual growth and connection.

connection2Bible
Spiritual connection is limited at best if we are not reading the Bible. The Bible gives us direction, connection, and affection. The Bible is the primary way God speaks to us. He wants you to hear his voice, listen to him. The Bible is not so much a rule book as it is a love letter from God. Open it up and find out how much God loves you.

connection1

Prayer
The Bible is the primary way God speaks to us, prayer is the primary way we speak to God. Reading the Bible and prayer is how we have conversations with God. No relationship can grow without authentic communication. If our spiritual connection, our relationship with God, is going to grow, we must have authentic communication with him through reading the Bible and praying to him.

connection

Fellowship
If we are going to grow in our spiritual connection, we must grow in our connection with other people who desire to grow in their spiritual connection. That sentence may be worth reading again. Jesus established the church, which is our primary place for getting this type of connection. I know, I know, some of you are saying “the church is full of hypocrites and they have lost the meaning of true spirituality”, and there may be some truth to that. However, we often do not hear the positive side of the church. Churches really are most responsible for the positive change that has taken place throughout history. We have done some things very wrong, but we have done much more right. If you want more input on that subject please read “An Open Letter to the Church”.

The church is what Jesus established for his followers to come together for a deeper spiritual connection with him. With all its faults it is still God’s chosen vessel for deep, spiritual relationships. If we want to grow in our relationship with God we must grow in our relationship with other followers of Jesus.

Giving
If we are to grow in our spiritual connection with the ultimate giver…God…We must become givers ourselves. Giving can be our time, talents or treasures. Better yet, it should be all three. One of the best ways to find real happiness is to become a giver. Psychologist Alfred Adler put it this way, “We could be cured of depression in only fourteen days if every day we would try to do something good for somebody else.”

connection3

I encourage you to schedule time to read your Bible. If you do not understand it then look for a different translation that is easier to understand. Here are some of my favorites: New International Version, The Message, and The Voice. If you do not like reading then listen to it. You can get it on CD or even look it up online for free.

Set aside a time of prayer. However, do not limit your prayer time to just scheduled times. Be open to spontaneous prayers as well. My wife and I have scheduled times when we talk, but we are not limited to those times. We spontaneously talk throughout the day as well. It is the same way with God.

If you are not already part of a church then I encourage you to find one. Please do not just attend, get involved. If you can find one that has a strong small groups environment it may help your connection even better.

Look for opportunities to give of your time, talents, and treasures. Give to your church, give to your community, give to your favorite cause, just be a giver. To some extent the more you give, the happier you will be.


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_MG_6842cropTommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message. You will look like a rockstar for hiring Tommy Lanham!

Check Tommy’s availability or leave him a note:

Step Three to Finding Real Happiness: Feed Your Mind

garbage.jpgWhat if I came into your house with a pile of garbage and dumped it all out on your living room floor? What would you do? You may call the police or you may take matters into your own hands and begin pounding some sense into me.  You would at least tell me to “Clean it up.” Depending on how quickly I responded to your demand, you may revert to one of the other two options.

The garbage on your living room floor can be cleaned up with some focused attention. But what about the garbage we pour into our minds on a daily basis? That is not so easily cleaned up. Be careful what goes into your mind.

Over the last two blogs, we have looked at two steps to finding real happiness: Step one is do something and step two is find someone. Today we will look at step three…feed your mind!

garbage 4Most people do not read a single non-fiction book after they finish school. We fill our minds with junk on the radio, T.V., the internet, and numerous other sources; but we do not take the time to fill our minds with good, positive, productive information. If we want to find real happiness, we must become life-long learners.

How many of you believe everything you read in the Bible? Now, how many of you believe everything you read on the internet? Now, I ask you, how many of you spend more time reading what you don’t believe than what you do believe?

I would encourage you to become life-long learners. Read or listen to something that will help you grow and move in the direction of your goals. If you do not have any goals, then maybe you could start with reading GOALS: Godly Objective Assuring Lasting Significance.

garbage 2

Learn more about whatever it is you do in life. If you are married, read or listen to some books on marriage (The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman) or go to a marriage conference. If you are a parent, read or listen something on parenting (Scream-Free Parenting by Hal Edward Runkel) or go to a parenting class or conference. If you want to grow spiritually, read or listen to something on spiritual growth (The Bible) or go to church. Wherever you are in life or whatever you are doing, learn more about it so you can get better.

I am a speaker and a life coach who helps people climb to their God-given potential. You know what I read and listen to the most? Books and audios on speaking, coaching, and reaching my God-given potential. Those things not only feed my mind, they feed my soul.

If you want to find real happiness, I encourage you to do something, find someone, and feed your mind. Begin or continue your lifelong quest for learning. You may have finished your formal schooling, but if you want to find real happiness and joy, you must never finish your education.

What is the next book you are going to read? Class you are going to take? Audio you are going to listen to? Whatever it is, write it down (message it to me below if you want) and then take action! Buy it, pick it up, press play, whatever you need to do please do it now!


Follow to this blog to get motivation, encouragement, and accountability to help you reach your God-given potential!

Subscribe to the YouTube channel to get notified when new videos are posted!


_MG_6842cropTommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message. You will look like a rockstar for hiring Tommy Lanham!

Check Tommy’s availability or leave him a note:

An Open Letter to the Church

church3I love the church and I have been disgusted with the church. The church has been my biggest source of comfort and my biggest source of pain. I have found the best people I know in the church and I have found the worst people I know in the church.  The church has made me proud and the church has made me embarrassed. The church has been my refuge from the world and it has brought the world to me. The church has taught me the Bible and I have, at times, had to learn the Bible despite what the church was teaching me. The church has shown me Jesus and the church has shown me Satan.

The church has fallen short of its calling. Even though the church is the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12), it is also inhabited by people. As the church, we are to be a fellowship of people who are the body of Christ. At times, we represent Jesus well and at other times we fail miserably at it.

church6Tony Campolo says, “The church is the light of the world, and like any other light sometimes it attracts bugs.” The longer I am in ministry the more I understand that quote. The church is both great and pitiful at the same time.

The church is this walking paradox that is the greatest source of positive change in this world as well as the greatest obstacle to change. We are often clueless to how much the church has influenced so many great characteristics of our culture. We simply take these characteristics for granted today. At the same time, there are some in the church who fought the very changes that have made such a positive difference in our world.

church5I love the church. It is my biggest source of comfort. It is where I have met the best people on the planet.  It has made me proud.  It has been my place of refuge.  It has taught me the fundamental truths of the Bible. The church has shown me Jesus and Jesus is all these things and more to me. Without the church, I would not have met Jesus. Jesus gives me life to the full, an abundant life, a real eternal life and a more and better life than I ever dreamed of.

So, thank you church! The many churches I have been a part of over the years. The one that birthed and raised me, the ones that taught and groomed me, the ones that have inspired and empowered me, and all the ones that will continue to work in my life as long as I am on this earth. I will never turn my back on you.You are not always perfect, but neither am I. One of the big reasons you are not perfect is because I am a part of you. With all your spots, blemishes, and shortcomings I would rather be a part of you than any other group of people this world has to offer.

So, church, no matter what happens, I will never leave you nor forsake you!


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_MG_6842cropTommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message.

Check Tommy’s availability or leave him a note:

 

What EXACTLY Is It You Do For a Living Tommy Lanham?

Hi!  I’m Tommy’s wife, Tammy.  Something Tommy and I have in common is we both struggle with a short answer when the inevitable question comes up “So, what do you do?”  I, personally, homeschool a 6th grader and 8th grader, am the chief marketing officer for my husband’s business as well a the owner of Tammy Lanham Images, specializing in photography and marketing for entrepreneurs and small businesses.  See – not really a very short answer, is it?

So I sat down with Tommy Lanham and interviewed him to try and get a better idea of how to market him.  I’ll let you listen in:

So Tommy, what is it you do for a living?
I used to say I was a speaker and life coach. The ppotential 2roblem with that answer is that many people have no idea what that means. It is such a vague description of what I do. It is like asking a mechanic what he does and him answering, “I lift hoods and twist wrenches.”

Give me the short answer.
I help people climb to their God-given potential. Although some think I’m a comedian, I love puns and that my full-time job is keeping my wife happy.  All of that is true, too.

Who is it that you help?
Organizations, churches, ministries, marriages, and individuals.  Hungry ones.

I was recently working with a coach myself and together we came up with,  “I serve those who hunger for their God-given potential.” This better identifies who I work with. People who are content in their day-to-day life probably have no interest in what I have to offer.

hunter

Who will benefit from working with you?
Those who hunger.  Businesses who want to be more successful, more productive, more peaceful.  Organizations who are ready to move forward and really crush it.  Churches who want to go beyond the status quo.  People/organizations who have big plans but don’t know how to move forward with those plans.  Those who are ready to make changes, ready to discover what God has in store for them.

Those people are much less likely to get sidetracked when the climb becomes difficult. Because it will get difficult. If you do not have that inner hunger, all the skill, motivation and coaching in the world will not help you.

How exactly do you work with people?
I do one-on-one coaching, I travel and speak, offer motivational keynotes, present partial and full day training for organizations and events.  I have three popular presentations “Great Minds Think Together” “Organized Dreaming” and “The Climb” that can stand alone or build upon one another to create an unstoppable recipe for success.

Explain to me “Location / Destination / Navigation”
That’s the three programs I just mentioned.
1.  Location:  Step one is figuring out your own location – your starting point on your GPS. Who are you? Get an understanding of your organization’s strengths and weaknesses, personality, spiritual gifts, your present state, etc.  This helps give you an understanding of where you are starting. You cannot map out where to go until you find out where you are.  This self-awareness is discovered and examined in my program “Great Minds Think Together.”  It is the foundation of my 3-step program.

2.  Destination:  Where do you want to be?  What do you want most out of life?  This step is all about discovering your organization’s purpose and future. In this program, you create a vivid picture in your mind about where you would like you or your organization to go. What kinds of goals are you setting?  Get specific about your goal or dream. Do not say, “I want to increase productivity.” That is like telling your GPS, “I want to go north.” That is not a destination. In this program, I help you get specific. My program “Organized Dreaming” helps you set goals with razor sharp focus. It’s a great tool on its own but it’s also an incredibly effective tool when coupled with the foundational program in step 1.

3.  Navigation:  Once your GPS finds your location, and you enter the address you want to go to, then and only then, will the GPS calculate a route for you. Then you can follow the direction to get to your destination. Sometimes you may need to re-calculate along the way just like a GPS does, but that does not mean you abandon the destination. It just means you may need to make some adjustments along the way. The program “The Climb” is the motivation, empowerment and the guide along your journey that helps you navigate which step to take next.

There you go! A simple three step process. Location + Destination + Navigation = your GPS for success in getting from where you are to where you want to be!

So, what is it you tell people when they ask what it is you do?
I am leading an enthusiastic revolution against the mundane.  I don’t think they always get it.

You get up on a Monday morning.  What’s your first hour look like?
I send out reminder emails to my coaching clients of their upcoming coaching calls this week. I do any last minute preparations for any groups I’ll be speaking to during the week and check my calendar for upcoming group presentations or travel.

Then I eat a bowl of cereal and kiss my wife good morning.  Remember, gotta keep my wife happy.  😉  The same things any leader of a revolution does, right?


Follow to this blog to be sure to get motivation, encouragement, and accountability in your inbox to help you reach your God-given potential!

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_MG_6842cropTommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message.

Check Tommy’s availability or leave him a note:

 

How to Speed Up the Climb to Your God-Given Potential

Whether you are leading a business, church, family or simply leading yourself, there are specific ways to be more successful. I have used this acronym before because it is so helpful in getting from where you are to where you want to be. To be more successful and better reach our God-given potential, we must FACE it: Focus, Action, Correction, and Example.

  • Focus
    Again, whether we are leading a business, church, family, or simply leading ourselves, we must develop focus. What is the specific purpose of my business? Why does my church exist? What direction do I want my family to go? What is my personal life purpose? Be specific. The more focused we are the more likely we are to hit our target.
  • ActionFACE
    Take action! Yes, we will mess up and fall flat on our faces from time to time or maybe even often. That is OK, just take action. Nothing ever happened from people just sitting around thinking about things. It is great to dream as long as we get up and do something about it. Take action.
  • Correction
    After we begin to take action and fall flat on our face, let’s ask this question, “What can I learn from this?” Every time we fail we have the opportunity to begin again more intelligently. Make the needed corrections and then take action again.
  • Example
    The best way to shorten the learning curve is to find an example to follow. Find a business that is where we want to be and learn from them. Find a church that is reaching people and growing the way we would like to grow and learn from them. Find a family that is the kind of family we would like to be and learn from them. Find someone who is where we would like to be in life and learn from them. Find models to follow in our endeavor to climb to our God-given potential.

If we focus, take action, make corrections, and follow good examples it will speed up our climb to our God-given potential.


Follow to this blog to be sure to get motivation, encouragement, and accountability in your inbox to help you reach your God-given potential!

Subscribe to the YouTube channel to get notifications when I post new videos!


_MG_6842cropTommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message.

Check Tommy’s availability:

 

 

How to Drastically Improve Your Communication

Often times the biggest breakdown in companies, churches, and marriages is communication. Poor communication negatively affects everything else. Communication tends to break down because we all communicate differently.

Each personality style has their own unique way of communicating. When one style is communicating one way and another style is expecting them to communicate their way it creates chaos.

We must be aware of our own communication tendencies as well as the communication tendencies of others. Leaders will make the proper adjustments in their own communication. While some people, who refuse to adjust their communication, will just complain that nobody understands them.

What are the communication tendencies of each style?

Theart_PNG691he security seeking style-The Hearts-are concrete communicators. This means they communicate very deductively. Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, then tell them what you told them. Hearts want to hear three steps and a conclusion. They understand what they can hear, physically feel, and taste. Hearts also need a connection of what you are saying to a person or a task. Hearts like to accomplish tasks and they like community. If you can connect what you are talking about to a specific task or to a group of people it becomes more meaningful to a heart.

bodyThe thrill-seeking style-The Bodies-are also concrete communicators. So, they also like things explained very deductively. Step one, step two, step three, and so on. However, the difference between the bodies and the Hearts is that Bodies need to enjoy the conversation. They need to be excited or drawn into what is being said. Create excitement and you have their attention

soulThe identity seeking style-The Souls-are abstract communicators. They can often begin to daydream if the conversation becomes to deductive. They need to hear concepts and ideas as much or more than cold hard facts. With Souls, you sometimes do not have to say the point to make the point. A matter of fact, Souls often prefer to discover the point on their own. Souls are not much for meaningless chit-chat. They want their conversations to be meaningful and with a purpose.

mindThe knowledge seeking style-The Minds-are also abstract communicators. They need concepts and ideas as much or more than cold hard facts. However, they also need to be stimulated mentally. If your conversations are shallow or “same old, same old” then you will lose the attention of a mind. They need to be mentally challenged. Also, if you are making any “out of the box” claims (a place Minds actually enjoy) you better be able to back it up. Minds are also not much for chit-chat. They prefer to get the point and see where the point takes them.

As you communicate with people at work, at church, with friends, or in your marriage. Try to identify the communication style of the person or people you are communicating with. Make the proper adjustments and you will begin to see drastic results.

What adjustments can you make in your next conversation?

After reading today’s blog, what personality style do you think you are?  Comment below by clicking on “leave comment” and then at the end of the week, after reviewing each personality type in more detail, you can see if you were right!


Subscribe now to be sure to get motivation, encouragement, and accountability in your inbox to help you reach your God-given potential!


_MG_6842cropTommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message.

Check Tommy’s availability:

 

Do American Christians Show Compassion Like the Jewish Jesus?

Sometimes it can be difficult. Some of the obstacles to being a compassionate follower of Jesus may be immaturity, self-centeredness, or moments of frustration. Probably the biggest obstacle to a compassionate Christian life is the misunderstanding of what it means to be a follower of Jesus. Jesus was the embodiment of compassion.

      Christians think we are supposed to take back America or win the culture war, make sure homosexuals do not destroy marriage, keep America moral and pure, right? 

       But wait – that was not Jesus’ purpose for Israel. And dare I suggest, maybe it should not be our purpose for America.  

       Jesus judged the religious crowd, not Israel’s patriotism to a long forgotten time that may or may not have ever existed.  If we are to judge, let us judge ourselves, the “religious” crowd… the Church.

      If America is to become great it will be because of Christians’ compassion, not their control.  know-compassion

 

_MG_6842crop     Tommy Lanham is a dynamic, award-winning speaker who has been training individuals and organizations to reach their God-given potential for 25 years. With a unique blend of Ziglar motivation and ragamuffin faith, Tommy delivers powerful, life changing messages filled with humor, hope, and enthusiasm.

Tommy will empower, entertain and energize audiences to achieve extraordinary results and live a life beyond what they ever dreamed possible.

Tommy is dedicated to helping you make your next event the best you’ll ever experience. Your audience will laugh, learn and be inspired as he mixes enthusiasm and humor with motivational stories to deliver a high content message.

Contact Tommy to book him for your next event!