Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Use Your Imagination

Your greatest gift.

Perhaps the greatest gift that God gave you is your imagination. I don’t believe it is there just for entertainment value, but that He gave it to you for a definite purpose. Imagination can give wings to your desires and hope to your dreams! Your imagination can take you from the sufferings you may be experiencing to a place of freedom from struggle. It is the most powerful weapon in your arsenal, so don’t let it lie around unused or use it ineffectively without a focused goal in mind. Take flight on the wings of focused imagination!
Imagination is the key to a changing your life from one of defeat and mediocrity to one of success and achievement. How sad to find people everywhere who have been so put down that they refuse to dream. Some have been hurt so often that they dare not ask for anything for fear of another disappointment. To all of you who find yourself in a place of hopelessness I say, dare to dream, and even better, dare to dream big. It takes the same amount of energy to imagine having something great as it does something small!

                                     Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh.

Imagination can kill!

The wonderful thing about using imagination is that it is not hard to do. Everyone can do it no matter your circumstance. Imagination has the power to kill you or bring you the freedom you desire. I remember the story of a worker who found himself locked in a refrigerated truck when everyone else in the yard had left for the weekend.  Believing that the refrigeration unit was on, he scribbled a farewell note to his wife. It read, “It is getting colder and colder and soon I will freeze to death!” When the truck door was opened the following Monday, the man lay dead, huddled in a corner, showing all the signs of having frozen to death! The temperature inside was quite normal. His imagination had killed him.

My course correction

I recently caught myself thinking along certain lines. I had somehow developed the idea and expectation that a client was against me and trying to replace my input in a large project with that of another party. The idea had already formed in my imagination that I was becoming an outsider when I was tipped off by an inner prompting that I should correct my thinking. I immediately started seeing myself in a group photo, standing in the middle of the small group of key players with our arms around each other like a football team lining up for a photo. I felt a strain imagining it at first as the limiting thought cracked broke and made way for the feeling of mutual appreciation respect between us. I could leave the focused image with a sense of inner peace. A few hours later, I received a phone call from a key person in the group, affirming that I would remain in the architectural driving seat as before. Had I not corrected the image, my imagination would have placed me in disfavor with the rest of the team and that could have killed the project!

Your life script

Your imagination will either kill you or bring you the successful life that you want. Years ago I read a something somewhere by psychiatrist Eric Berne who also wrote that wonderful classic, “The Games People Play.”  He suggested that self-limiting decisions are made in childhood in the interest of survival. Such decisions culminate in what Berne called the "life script," Your life plan unconsciously governs the way your life is lived out. You have unconsciously determined how old you will become, what kind of a person you will marry, if you will marry at all, how successful you will become, how much money you will be comfortable earning or accumulating.
Imagine that! You have unconsciously determined how your life will work out in all different departments. Maybe this is you? You may consciously want to live a healthy life but keep killing yourself slowly with booze and cigarettes. You may consciously want to be happily married but you keep marrying the wrong sort of person. How often have we not seen that happen? You desperately want to be married but keep rejecting everyone who is interested or no one is ever good enough! You may have a great conscious desire to be well off but you keep squandering all your money. You are lonely and desperately want friend but keep chasing them off by upsetting them in some way, the list goes on.

Take a hard look

It will help to take a hard look at yourself and consider what your unconscious scripts may be. Ask yourself, how old do you think you will become? How will your marriage turn out? How successful will you become in your line of work? How wealthy will you become?  Ask yourself and wait for an answer from inside. If you don’t know, that is ok too. At least you are learning that whatever the answers are, you can set new sights, have new goals and develop fresh expectations. Life like God can be new every morning. You can change by consciously setting the level of success that you want to have in each area of your life. If you don’t consciously determine what you want in life and set about achieving it in the right way, your unconscious life scripts will determine it for you!

Talent is not enough!

Your natural ability and talent alone will not cut it for you; it will not get you where you want to be. The most successful people are often people of limited ability. Think of how many brilliant people die without ever seeing their dreams realized. One of my childhood heroes Vincent Van Gogh died in the pain of rejection, poverty and defeat by taking his own life. Was there ever a painter more deserving of experiencing the social and financial success and personal happiness that he desperately wanted while he was alive?

Hard work alone will not cut it!

Hard work alone will not do it for you. The hardest working people I always thought, are the ones digging ditches in the sweltering heat. They also tarn the minimum of wages! Further, you can try and try and try to meet the right person or make a relationship work, or success in a new business only to see it slipping away every time. The end of all this is to settle for mediocrity and believe as one young lady told me, “I don’t believe in dreams, they never come true.”

The great Teacher

Changing the life script is the aim of transactional analysis psychotherapy, the brain child of Eric Berne. While I cannot speak on the success of his methods, I do believe that wonderful results can be achieved by applying the Word of God to every situation of your life. This method is the brain child of the Lord Almighty who inspired men of old to write down what they were prompted to by the Holy Spirit. God is the great Encourager, the great Inspirer, and the great Teacher, leading us and showing us the way out of being stuck in pain, defeat, mediocrity and simple boredom.
He instructs us in his manual, the Bible, to be transformed by the renewing of our minds.

Focused Imagination will do it!

There is a difference between focused and wild imagination. To describe the difference, I like the illustration of getting into a New York taxi cab and when the driver asks you where you would like to go, you respond, “I don’t know, anywhere!” In the same way, your imagination should take off with a definite end destination in mind. Having a clear picture of where you want to go is, I believe, God’s purpose in giving this faculty. Your imagination is tied to your free will. You can fly anywhere with it. It the flying carpet in the fables. If you don’t set a direction consciously by imagining with clarity the destination you want to go to, your unconscious life script will determine your final destination. Use your free will wisely and confidently.

Set your course

Determine where you want to go with your relationships, career, health and finances. Imagine having arrived at the destination in each case, just as you would tell a cab driver where you want to go to. You don’t have to tell him which route to follow to get there, he knows the way. That’s his job. All you have to do is to define the end result by imagination. Your spirit working with God will get you there. The Holy Spirit is the cab driver. He will show you the way step by step. He will say, “This is the way, walk ye in it.” If you don’t listen to the promptings you will miss it, so be on the alert. Your job is simple obedience,

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