Going Through Hell

Episode 82

One of the main keys to success is to keep going when you start. I’m sure that you’ve heard the old adage, “If you’re going through Hell, keep going.” Let me explain a few things today that’s helped a lot of people. This has EVERYTHING to do with Living the Freedom Life and I want to share it with you. This is Episode 82 named after those infamous words of Winston Churchill, We are talking about “Going Through Hell” today.  

If you aren’t in it, or been through it, now may be the time to prepare for it. Notice I didn’t say expect it because it really isn’t in the plan for you to experience. 

We are talking about going through Hell today. People who have been there, it’s like a telepathic code, like two war veterans being able to silently communicate about understanding each other’s hardship. Once you go, you know… and you can easily see it in others.

If you haven’t, well all I can say is, “bully for you”. 

Well, I believe there is a great deal that we can learn from history. If we don’t, it has been said that we are doomed to repeat it.

Almost a 100 years ago this week, a 65 year old, chubby, frumpy faced man took on a new job. It would be one of the most infamous feats of the 20th century. The man, was Winston Churchill and the job, was to be Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. When he took the job, the British looked to be done for, by the vicious and victorious German Natzis of World War II. Churchill was in office for two weeks and France was knocked out of the war, only to send 340,000 British troops scurrying to escape over the beaches at Dunkirk, crossing the channel to safety.

The Germans had absolute control over all of Europe and it eerily seemed to be Britain’s fate that they wouldn’t survive. 

Just as in any good story, where all hope is lost and it seems there is no way out, here comes our hero, providing such a wake up call to the greatness that’s inside all of us, that no person can deny.

When Churchill addressed the people that were looking to him to save their beloved nation, he laid out his plan bluntly. He said “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat.” He rallied and told them all the places and situations they would fight and erupted with “we shall never, never, ever give up”. Churchill used language that he knew would rouse the fighting spirit that still remained in the British people. And he activated the entire UK.

As it happened, the Royal Air Force was outnumbered, but that didn’t stop them by beating the Germans day after day, month after month. 

Eventually, they not only survived that time, but they were able to claim victory over those odds, and built back much more that the city that was bombed, but they built back a resilience, they had tested their tenacity, and hope proved to show itself faithful. 

Just like many of you who have been through some things. It wasn’t a one day decision to stop doing this or that. It was consistency of effort with sweat and drive over a long period of time, longer than you thought it would take, but you got through it. 

There are others who are in the middle of something and need to hear that victory is actually an option where everything seems lost and hopeless. 

As Churchill reflected back on that time, he would later describe it by saying, “If you’re going through Hell, keep going.

There is a song by Rodney Atkins that has sprinboarded off Churchill’s famous statement adding 

If you’re going through Hell, keep on going, 

don’t slow down, if you’re scared don’t show it, 

you might get out before the devil even knows you’re there.

While this isn’t a exactly a theological statement, or a statement on religious doctrine, what I hope that you hear today is that even though you may feel that you are under tremendous odds, that you feel there is no way out, keep going. Don’t give up. Please, do_not_ever_quit. Fight for the things and freedoms that’s on your heart.

Listen, as a former Hell dweller, I know it may be hard right now, but you have to keep going. There is a way out. There is hope. In fact, if you are listening to this podcast and you are not going through something difficult right now, would you please pray for those who are listening and they are going through, maybe what is the fight of their life right now. Pray for them.

A Unique Set of Skills

Episode 81

When it comes to New Year Resolutions, by now, there are only four options. Either you are well on your way to accomplishing the task you set out, or they’ve flopped, or you didn’t make any, or, the fourth option is that you just need some encouragement to keep going. This is episode # 81 and you’re listening to Living the Freedom Life.

We have been talking about New Year Resolutions for a few episodes now and though you may grow tired of the topic, we deal with this topic or concept of Resolutions every day. See, in some arenas, it’s called a Resolution, in other circles, it’s called a goal, while sometimes we make (all throughout the year) we make statements like “I need to be more….” fill in the blank here. That is what we do here at Kyle McMurray Coaching. 

After making those well-intentioned New Year resolutions, what do you think usually happens around this time of year? After we are a few weeks in and the honeymoon has worn off, a little reality has set in. We get busy, we begin to make excuses, we start to feel the monkey on our back, there’s little nitpicking thoughts that come. 

This reminds me of the story about an eagle.  An eagle is the symbol of our nation, powerful, strong, wise, majestic and well, something you don’t want to mess with. Like a lion is the King of the jungle, I suppose the Eagle is at the top of the food chain in the air. If you’ve ever been to a zoo and seen an eagle up close, when you see the size of those talons and that sharp beak, you’ll be convinced, there’s not much of anything an Eagle can’t accomplish in its surroundings. They’re equipped to conquer.

I’ve been in the High Country and I saw this for myself in the wild. Do you know the only bird that will mess with an Eagle is a crow? Now, Crows are pretty smart. They’ve been shown to remember human faces and quickly assess what and who is a threat.

Here is what they do. Crows are also very particular about their territory. When they see something as big as an eagle landing on what they feel is their turf, they think it’s a threat and they attack.

In comparison the Eagle is about three times the size of a Crow so the Crow can maneuver quickly and land on the Eagle’s back. 

A Crow will hitch a ride, in mid air and start pecking at the Eagle’s neck to send a message, so to speak.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel as if I have something pecking on my neck when I’m trying to concentrate.

Here is something that I’ve learned from an Eagle in that situation. Even though the eagle is well-equipped to conquer and get rid of the problem, he chooses to fight a more efficient way.

He fights with his unique set of skills. He doesn’t use the same weapons that are being used against him. 

We don’t fight with flesh and blood we fight against principalities. Eph 6:12  

You are made after God’s image. If God is infinitely strong and powerful, then you have your own unique set of skills that He has given you. 

You probably heard statements like “rise above it” and “take the high road”. That’s what if Asian six is talking about. Giving us the ability to rise above it, to put on the armor of God. I encourage you to read the entire chapter of Ephesians 6. because at the end, the only thing that Paul says is give me the boldness to speak as I ought to speak. When we use the armor of God, the word of the Lord, truth, the gospel of peace, all of these things, just like the eagle.

 See, what happens with the eagle is that he begins to fly upwards. The crow is still on his back, but he continues to fly higher. The higher he flies, the harder it is for the crow to breathe.  Soon, the crow will fall. 

Here is where we get confused and fooled. Let’s say we’ve been walking with the Lord for a while. We see His strength in us and we begin to notice our huge talons, our sharp beak and our size. Then one day, we do something as simple as land in an area and take a break. For some reason, unknown to us, here come some crows. We know we have the advantage in the air so we take off flying. The temptation will be to show our strength.

Yeah, there may be times where you get pecked in the neck. It’s annoying and it can hurt. 

But, just like the eagle, don’t waste your time on the crows. The freeing thing is when you realize they don’t have anything you need. 

The oxygen may be thin for them, but this atmosphere is what you’re made for. Just take them to your heights, and watch them fall by the thousands. Just like we read in Psalm 91:7-16.

Spiritual warfare seems so mystical. It’s not. Another thing about spiritual warfare is that it’s not weird. Read Ephesians 6 and you’ll see.

We are out of time, but I want to encourage you that you have a unique set of skills given by our creator. The way you fight back, may not look like what you think it does. But when you begin to soar upward, when you begin using your unique set of skills, you will be Living the Freedom Life.

The Art of Marinating

Ep 80

I want to ask you a rhetorical question. How many times have you been talking to someone, they ask “How have you been?”, and your answer goes something like this… 

Oh man, I’ve been really busy.” Or “Yeah, I just don’t have time for much anymore, between work and family.” 

You’re listening to Living the Freedom Life Ep 80 and today we are talking about being The Art of Marinating.

When we first started this podcast, when we were dreaming up the concept of Living the Freedom Life, I had the thought “We need to make this short, to the point. I’m so tired of listening to podcasts that last 45 minutes and they only REALLY say about 5 minutes of worthwhile stuff. I think everyone is much too busy and they don’t want to sift through the fluff.” 

See, the assumption here is that everyone is so intelligent nowadays, that all we need is a boiled down version, all we need is the Cliff Notes or the Highlights. 

I’m no longer convinced of this. If we are so intelligent, why are we still having such moral failures? Why do we still feel like we’re just floating through life? We’ve lost sight of knowing what it really means to thrive. Why do so many still struggle with such elementary life skills? 

I’m not saying that I’m immune to this. What I am saying is that I believe we have lost the art of marinating. 

I hope you know what I mean by this.

This isn’t a New Concept. Most of us have heard about living in a microwave Society. 

There’s an art to slowing down. 

Not only is there a great art to slowing down, but there’s great power in it as well. 

Yes, rest is important. In fact, it made the top 10 list, you know, keeping the Sabbath. 

Pastor Brady Boyd book “Addicted to Busy- Recovery for the Rushed Soul”. 

It takes a while for a person to get to the point to where you can become prideful in spewing how busy you are. As though it’s a Rite of Passage. Or it shows how important you are. How much people depend on you. 

Actually, it’s quite the opposite. Overworked is the new uneducated. Being busy is just a red flag showing that one doesn’t know how to set boundaries in their life. 

What we’re talking about today isn’t an atrocity. If a lot of people trust you, depend on you, end call on you for advice, that’s a great gift. 

Just like I can throw some chicken, right from the freezer, on to the grill, and it will come out to be a great meal.  However, if we take the time to blend some spices and sauces together and put that chicken in a bag and let it marinate, NOW that will have new meaning.

You see, being busy isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But if we learn the art of marinating, I believe things will be much better, deeper, richer and much more full of flavor. 

When I explain marinating, what I really mean is meditating. I’m not talkin about sitting in the corner with your legs crossed and a fruity hat on your head reciting chants. 

All meditation is, is taking the time to stop, slow your mind down, that takes time. And be intentional about what you’re thinking about. Some people call this practice mindfulness. 

We are instructed to practice this in the Bible.

I’ll have a link in the show notes on the scripture reference in Philippians, but I’d like to paraphrase if I can.

Phil 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

He’s asking us to meditate on these things. So, instead of us focusing on things that are lies, where to focus on things that are true.  instead of focusing on things that are shameful and embarrassing, think on these things that are noble.  instead of trying to figure out how to get the upper hand or the advantage on someone, think on these things that are just.  instead of imagining what the worst case scenario could be, think of things that are pure and lovely.  Instead  of believing the worst intentions, let’s start looking at the things that are of a good report.  if there’s any goodness, and virtue, and if there’s anything praiseworthy, we are to meditate on these things.  That’s what Philippians 4 verse 8 is talking about. 

If we are able to put these things into practice in our everyday life, we will in fact begin to start Living the Freedom Life. If we were able to push out those thoughts and focus ourselves on this scripture, how we are to discipline our fault life into thinking on these things, we will be Living the Freedom Life. That’s our hope for everyone listening today.

Until next time, Living the Freedom Life, this is Kyle.

Rejection

Ep. 79

As we dive into today’s topic… It’s one that I face quite often and I’m sure you do too. Even with our Coaching clients, we find that this is a huge driver to many things we do in our lives. You’re listening to Living the Freedom Life, this is episode 79 and today we are talking about Rejection.

Ah yes. Rejection. All of us have experienced it, there is no need wasting time defining it. That’s why our podcast is short. I want to respect your time. Everyone is busy. You don’t need to spend 40 minutes listening to fluff when we can boil it down to 5. 

Hmmmm, I just realized, that could sound a little like Rejection in certain circumstances.

Rejection is a driving force that can either dig a deep hole in our soul or, motivate us to do things or go places we wouldn’t have tried otherwise. 

I’m going to make a bold statement here, there is only one cure for Rejection. Only one. The only cure for Rejection is Acceptance. 

That doesn’t mean in order for me to be healed, I need to be accepted from the Opposing Red Rover team that always picked me and then laughed when I didn’t make it through the line.

In other words, I don’t need to be accepted by the specific person who rejected me. Most of the time, that is not a reality. Coming to that truth is hard and I don’t minimize it. Because even though I joked about playing Red Rover, we are talking about a serious matter. Rejection is a cruel and powerful thing. As I said, it can either dig a deep hole in our soul, or motivate us into greatness.

When I began to read the Bible, I started where you read all books, at the beginning. At the time, not much of the Bible made sense to me, at all. But I remember when I got a little ways into it, I came across where two brothers gave a sacrifice to God. Cain and Abel. I didn’t really get tied up in why they were giving sacrifices to Him, but I remember thinking that it was a pretty harsh thing to “Reject” one and accept the other. How great it must be to be accepted. 

I had been rejected and I put myself there, in this brother’s shoes, feeling his rejection, and like him, I was angry about it. 

Now, the unfolding of that situation in my heart caused, not a monologue, but a dialogue between God and me. It was one of the first times that I’ve ever recognized it was Him. 

I was asking “Why did you reject me?” When it comes down to it, that’s what everyone wants to know, isn’t it? We instantly start to doubt the type of person we are. Rejection feels like we are some kind of horrible person. We search for some kind of logic to make sense of why we were rejected. Mostly only finding pain.

Rejection hurts. The closer the person is to us, the deeper the pain turns out to be.

Now there are some people that seem to live in the realm of rejection. Do you know someone like that? They get offended about everything. Well, it may mean something entirely different than you think. 

It may mean that they’ve had such a pattern of rejection in their life, that this is where they find acceptance. Even if it means getting rejected all over again. The hope of finding even a shimmer of momentary acceptance at the expense of getting shut down is still better. 

I’ll say it again, Acceptance is the only cure for Rejection. 

There are other people that take rejection and turn it into fuel. They are motivated by it. It empowers them. 

But either path we choose, Rejection is a powerful driving force and acceptance is the only thing that will extinguish it. Acceptance is the only thing that can reverse the damage done by being Rejected.

Wanna know what the Lord said to me when I was reading in Gen 4 about Cain and Abel?

If you know the story, and if you know mine, you will see. But He did the same thing with me as He did Cain. 

First off, He let me live. There was a time where I wanted to die and He knew that. Because of the position I was in, He also knew that I beat myself up for the sin that I’m responsible for in my life. And He made me a promise. The same one that He made Cain. That He will be with me. That no one will kill me. And it turned out for Cain, that he had a wife, a family and was building a city. Apparently, Cain was responsible for great influence around him and he knew that it wasn’t about him. 

Cain found acceptance. God gave me acceptance too. Not just mere acceptance, but He has proven Himself to be a keeper of His promises, He loves us, He wants to bless us, He wants us to live this Freedom Life that we keep talking about. 

I know we’re out of time today, but I want to tell you that if you are feeling rejected, ask God some questions. He just may be waiting to wrap you up in His arms, accept you right where you are, and give you the opportunity to find out how His promises lay out in your life. 

Until next time, Living the Freedom Life, this is Kyle

Resolution, Schmed-jo-lution

Ep 78

How many of you have made it this far? You know, with your New Year Resolutions. Are you still holding down the fort, even though the enemy is circling? Why are resolutions so hard? I know, resolutions are usually things, that I know that I should be doing, but aren’t.

You’re listening to Living the Freedom Life, this is ep78 Resolution, Schmed-jo-lution.

Did you make one this year? A resolution? I can imagine you did. Whether you realized it or not, you probably made a resolution of some kind. 

Why? 2020 was a rough year, in some way or another, it was for everyone. Some of you will, including me, try to give the Miss America Pageant answer and say that there was some good in it. Well of course there was. But as a whole, we wanted to see it gone. The statements may be different, (our resolutions) but none of us want to repeat 2020.

So we make our determining statements and try to choke it down with hope that it sticks. Oh sure, there will be a couple of waves where we muster up some determination, some more willpower to move forward. 

By the way, let me say this, all resolutions aren’t bad. There have been some amazing things accomplished through a New Year resolution. But I want to point out something today that some of you may not realize. 

In the work that I do, by definition, we’ve just described what we call an Inner Vow.

Let me explain what this is and how it happens. 

An Inner Vow begins with a Judgement. A judgement is a generalized negative decision that we’ve made, with a negative expectancy against something or someone. 

Here’s an example, 

There was a girl you liked in 4th grade and her name was Missy,  she was mean to you on the playground and now you no longer like anyone named Missy. That’s a judgment. (No, there was no one named Missy. That name was just used as an example. For all of you Missy’s out there, I don’t have anything against you. This is just an example.) 

It may or may not be about that specific person, it can be a generalization. Another way to describe this is to have a negative stereotype. That is a judgement against a certain type of people and the expectation of what’s in their heart. If you want to elevate this even more, racism is another way to describe this. 

These all begin with judgements. Now, if that’s not ugly enough, let’s talk about Inner Vows.

Inner Vows are determinations, or promises, or an oath we make internally; they are a response to a Judgement we’ve made. An Inner Vow is swearing to yourself that something you feel and believe, that you are now obligated and determined to carry out. 

That sounds a lot like a resolution, doesn’t it?

And don’t get me wrong, not all resolutions are to this extreme. 

What I’m pointing out here is to warn you of an unhealthy harmony that happens in the heart. 

It’s okay to tell yourself “This year, I’m going to do thus and so…” In our Coaching practice; that’s pretty important to have goals. When we take it too far is when we begin to attach ‘who we are’ to that. Does that make sense? Of course it does, yall are smart.

When the success or failure of these resolutions begin to tell us who we are, then that is not healthy. That is not Living the Freedom Life that we so often talk about. 

Whether or not, I am still a child of the King, no matter if I can fit in my flip-flops or not. 

We have tools to help with these things and we’ve made our website as easy as we know how, for you to do that. 

I just wanted to give you a clearer idea of what the progressions are in making resolutions. I wanted to give you some life today. Because remember… We give away what we have, Let’s make sure we receive life. Living the Freedom Life, this is Kyle

What Do You Want to Change?

Episode 77

Look, there hasn’t been much gone untouched by 2020. This year has been a doozy. I’ve seen everything from making sure that everyone eats Black Eyed Peas for the New Year to Opening your Back Door just before midnight to “Let out” everything about 2020 and open your front door to let the newness of 2021 in.  There is a lot that needs to change about 2021. But this time of year sparks that kind of thing, now doesn’t it? 

You’re listening to Living the Freedom Life ep 77 and today we are asking What Do You Want to Change?

It seems that the time is ripe for change. For the love, I’m not getting into politics on this one. I’m talking about the change within you, the change that will actually affect your day to day routines and your life. The change that underneath the surface, you really are longing for, the change that if you are brutally honest with yourself, you’ve been wanting for a very long time. 

That’s why this New Year’s season is so important to us. It’s the season of starting over. Everyone has something they want to change. 

Me? I want to go to the gym more. Oh, I have a gym membership.  I’m not utilizing it the way I should. Oh of course, time management was the first reason I didn’t go, then it became less and less convenient, and here we are. 

The problem with me and the gym is this, I was raised on a ranch. Having said that, if your parents owned a Feed Store and you were working there, and you were taking care of livestock, there is not much time or energy left to go to a gym. You see, that’s how I first learned. 

How we first learn something, sets the trajectory of how we will see similar situations.

Now, I don’t do those things. When I had a gym regiment, I felt great! I actually had more energy, I was limber, I certainly had more strength. Get this,…my body was more responsive to spiritual disciplines as well. So, it was definitely worth my time. You know, the thing that I thought I didn’t have, . . . my excuse was that I didn’t have time! But that was the thing provided for me. 

This is the thing I want to change during this Mulligan season of do overs. Making better use of my time.

The same thing can be true with you. We just have to look for it. 

What do you want to change? I mean really change?

Mine came disguised as the gym. The gym is not really what I wanted to change, well, I do want that to change, but it’s not the thing that I really want to change. 

I’m reminded of a line in the movie Evan Almighty, God : Let me ask you something. If someone prays for patience, you think God gives them patience? Or does he give them the opportunity to be patient? If he prayed for courage, does God give him courage, or does he give him opportunities to be courageous? If someone prayed for the family to be closer, do you think God zaps them with warm fuzzy feelings, or does he give them opportunities to love each other? 

You see, usually what we are praying for, what we really want to change in our lives, isn’t usually the real thing that we need to be praying about. We typically don’t know what we really need. That is why slowing down and having some true reflection time is so important. In the stillness is where God really enjoys stirring things up. 

I think that’s the only place that He can. 

So I need to ask you three things….

  1. Do you even know what needs to change in your life? It’s okay if you don’t right now, but we would like to help you find those things. We are able to help clients do just that.
  2. If you do know what needs to change in your life, do you know how to go about beginning that process? This is where a lot of people get stuck. It’s okay if you don’t know. But don’t let that stop you from pursuing it. 
  3. How do you know when that change comes?  How will you know if that change is real? How will you measure it? We have some things that can assist you in that walk. 

We would love to hear from you. Go to our website, send us an email, just reach out. We’ll respond as quickly as we can.  

We’re out of time,  but remember,  we give away what we have; let’s make sure we receive life.  Living the Freedom Life,  this is Kyle.