Everyone has a choice in life and can decide to make the best out of the cards they have been dealt, or they can pout about it and blame others for the hand they have, according to youth and children’s ministry pastor Ricardo Miller. He says it’s up to you.
“2019 is fast approaching – you can either leave your past failures behind in 2018 and keep moving forward with your life, or use yesterday’s failures to fuel your inspiration and keep creating your very own definition of success in the new year.”
Miller, the founder of Ricardo Miller Children’s Ministry (RMCM) identified seven things that he says people need to give up in order to get what they deserve in 2019 – unhealthy habits, short-term thinking, toxic people, fear of judgement, the phrase I can’t, instant gratification, and believing that someone is coming to save you.
Miller said learning is a “forever” thing.
“Habits are developed through what we learn and practice on a daily basis. We always have decisions to make. I want to challenge you to develop healthy habits in your finances, your physical health, your faith and your family,” said Miller. “Will you continue the patterns of old or create new paths that lead to success? Life is 10 percent of what happens to you and 90 percent how you react to it. It’s your choice how you respond to both failures and successes.”
Miller who also serves as family ministry pastor at Pathway of Life Church in Dallas, Fort Worth, Texas, said short-term thinking creates short term results.
“Too much short term, self-centered thinking and a lack of understanding of what is actually happening around you, and in the world creates limitations. Are you thinking in the long or short-term? How far into the future do your life plans exist? Remember – 2020, 2030 and 2040 are coming. What are your plans, goals and aspirations for those decades? While The Bahamas is a relatively young country, our future looks great, and as individuals it is our responsibility that the long-term path of the nation stays strong. What is your contribution to building a better, brighter Bahamas?”
Miller who has been evangelizing children, equipping parents and training children’s ministry workers for more than two decades also said people need to leave the toxicity behind heading into the new year.
“Life is so much better when you learn to eliminate toxic people and prioritize your self-worth and own happiness. It is better to lose supposed friends than to sit in the company of those who create rough seasons in your life by constantly affirming the negative. One of the best decisions you can make in your life is to walk away from toxic people. It is then you realize how much time was wasted with them. It is so nice when toxic people stop talking to you. It’s like the trash took itself out.”
Fear of judgement
The host of the award-winning, globally aired Children’s Ministry Talk Radio show, “Ask The Children’s Ministry Guy” which airs on Fishbowl Radio Network every Monday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Central Standard Time says the world is full of people with fears and loads of judgement – even when they don’t know the whole story.
“People are going to judge you for the good, for the bad and even more for what they do not understand.”
He said courage is not the absence of fear, rather the ability to feel fear of doing something bold and brave and doing it anyway.
“‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One results is understanding.’ – Proverbs 9:10. Don’t be afraid of judgement, be afraid of missing out on the possibilities of experiencing something great if you do nothing.”
The phrase, “I can’t”
He said everyone can do all things through Christ who gives them strength. And that God hasn’t given people the spirit of fear, stagnation or intimidation – but of love, power and of a sound mind.
“You can do it,” said Miller who is also the founder of The Bahamas National Children’s Ministry Day initiative. “Transformation is a present activity. You can make a different choice. It is the small choices and successes, built over time, that cultivate a healthy self-image and a healthy self-esteem.”
The youth and children’s ministry pastor said the need for instant gratification will be the downfall of many as the world is centered around seeing what he termed “right-now” results.
“People can think that quick fixes, fast fame and right-now money are the answer [but] it is unfortunately, creating a generation that lacks the fortitude to last for the long-haul in anything. It is important to know that some of the most valuable things in life are born from the wait. Your promise is coming,” he said.
“The ability to have patience, tenacity and put in effort now for what you want to see tomorrow is key.”
He encourages people to give up the need to have instant gratification and satisfaction.
Believing that someone is coming to save you
According to Miller, at some point people have to stop believing that someone is coming to save them and he said they have to learn how to save themselves.
“It is your responsibility to put in the effort, the time and the work to create a better tomorrow for yourself and for your family.”
The youth pastor said many people are their own worst enemy, or best friend.
“The root of all your problems or successes starts and ends with you. Don’t look at anyone or anything else to be the dictator of your destiny. It all starts in your own mind and heart.”
Heading into 2019, Miller said people have a choice to make – whether to live happily, or to live in turmoil.
“In the end, it is you versus you in 2019 and beyond.”