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Summary: Do not settle for less than what you want to acheive because in the Lord, everything is possible.

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SET YOUR STANDARDS

2 CORINTHIANS 7:1 SAYS: “HAVING THEREFORE THESE PROMISES,DEARLY BELOVED, LET US CLEANSE OURSELVES FROM ALL FILTHINESS OF THE FLESH AND SPIRIT, PERFECTING HOLINESS IN THE FEAR OF GOD.”

I REMEMBER AS A LITTLE KID, IN DALLAS, TEXAS, WE LIVED RIGHT NEXT TO A SMALL RIVER, MORE LIKE A CREEK. RIGHT BESIDE THE CREEK THERE WAS A PARK. I USED TO WAKE UP EVERY MORNING, EAT SOME PANCAKES, AND I REMEMBER THAT MY GOAL FOR THE DAY WAS TO GO TO THAT PARK. THAT WAS THE ONLY THING I WOULD CONCENTRATE ON DOING. SOME DAYS I WOULD FAIL TO ACCOMPLISH MY GOAL, BUT THAT WOULDN’T DISCOURAGE ME FROM TRYING AGAIN. ONE DAY, I GOT TO GO TO THAT PARK AND SINCE MY COUSIN, MARIVEL, WOULD LIVE WITH US, OR MAYBE IT WAS US WITH THEM, I DON’T KNOW, WE WOULD RACE TO THE BEST SWING

IN THE PARK. MAN, I WOULD PUSH HER OUT OF THE WAY EVERYTIME WE WOULD RACE TOWARDS THAT SWING, JUST TO GET IT. THEN, MARIVEL WOULD GO CRYING TO HER MOM, MY MOM WOULD FIND OUT, GET THE MAD ANOINTING UPON HER, SHE’D SHARE IT WITH ME A BIT, AND I WOULD HAVE

TO GIVE UP MY SWING! THAT DIDN’T MEAN MY DETERMINATION WAS OVER. TAKING ADVANTAGE THAT MARIVEL USED TO BE A BIT SLOW, OR I GUESS THE WORD WOULD BE NAIVE. I WOULD GO TO THE MERRY GO ROUND, OR THE SLIDE, OR MONKEY BARS, AND THAT MONKEY OF MY COUSIN WOULD FOLLOW ME. I WOULD PRETEND I WAS HAVING SO MUCH FUN ON WHATEVER OTHER THING I WAS ON AND SINCE MARIVEL WAS TRYING TO HAVE AS MUCH FUN AS I WAS, SHE WOULD DO THE SAME THING AND I WOULD END UP LEAVING HER ALONE HAVING “FUN” WHILE I WOULD GO BACK AND GET ON MY SWING! I HAD BEEN FRAMED, I HAD BEEN SUCKERED, BUT I GOT WHAT I WANTED WHICH WAS TO BE ON MY FAVORITE SWING. THE THING WAS THAT I DIDN’T GIVE UP. WELL, MARIVEL ISN’T AS DUMB NOW, BUT SHE DOESN’T TRUST ME AS MUCH, EITHER. I JUST WONDER WHY? NOW, AS A TEEN, MY

GOAL WAS TO FINISH HIGH SCHOOL IN MAY OF 1999. OBSTACLES CAME. I WAS OVERWHELMED BY EMOTIONS AND CIRCUMSTANCES OF WHICH I THOUGHT I COULD NOT CONTROL. FOR ONE, I WOULD SKIP A LOT. EVEN THEN, I STILL HAD A CHANCE, BUT WOULDN’T APPRECIATE IT. WHEN THE

TIME CAME IN WHICH REAL PROBLEMS WERE FACED, IT WAS TOO LATE. I WAS DISCOURAGED. MY GOAL WENT FROM GETTING A HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA TO GETTING A GED. IT WENT FROM A TROPHY AT THE END OF THE FINISH LINE TO A “CONGRATULATIONS FOR TRYING” SPEECH. THEN, IT CAME

TO ME, HOW CAN I BE A SOILDER FOR CHRIST IF I CANNOT BE AN EXAMPLE IN THE EDUCATIONAL ROUND? I NEEDED TO PRACTICE WHAT I PREACHED AND THAT’S A MAJOR ISSUE THAT MANY PEOPLE NOW A DAYS DON’T SHOW. THEY’RE HOLY IN THE CHURCH, BUT HAVE A COUPLE OF HOLES IN THE HEAD.

IF I WERE TO PREACH, “I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME,” BUT WAS ASKED, “WHY DIDN’T YOU GET YOUR HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA?” AND MY ANSWER WAS, “PROBLEMS, I COULDN’T HACK IT.” I WOULD END UP BEING AN “APESTOSO” APESTANDO THE WORD OF GOD! IF THE LORD GOD GIVES YOU NO MORE THAN WHAT YOU CAN HANDLE,

THEN NO ONE CAN LIMIT YOU, BUT YOU, YOURSELF! IF YOU PLAY BASKETBALL, AND YOUR HIGHEST STANDARD, OR GOAL, IS TO PLAY WITH THE NBA, DON’T SETTLE FOR COLLEGE BASKETBALL. DON’T LOWER YOUR STANDARDS. IF YOU WANT A Ph.D., BECOME AN MD, OR A 123, OR WHATEVER ALL THOSE LETTERS STAND FOR, DON’T SETTLE FOR BEING


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