Who Do You Call Friend?

Who Do You Call Friend?

 Marcus Gill

Marcus Gill

 

Let me just tell it like it is. You have to know who you are connected to. Knowing who you are connected to has way more to do with just knowing their name. Some people think that just because they know a person’s full name, and their hidden nickname, means that they know the individual. It’s about know who they are on the inside. You can know a person’s family, all of their background history, and still not know who they are. People have a way of hiding behind a mask of beauty and keeping all of the things that are wrong with them a secret. This is how people like you and I end up getting caught up in relationships and friendships that ruin our chances of being totally successful. I've been in the awkward position many times.

If you are like me, you like to give people the benefit of the doubt. Its nobody else’s fault but our own. Looking back at some of those past experiences that I’ve had, it’s easy to laugh now. Back then, on the other hand, when I discovered that I was connected to people who were on assignment from the enemy to keep me down, I was furious. Thank God for the experience. Had I not gone through those tough times with those individuals, I would be able to encourage others to pay attention to who they call friend.

It’s sad to say, but most of us who have a great calling on our lives have to go through this. Not to say that we have a right to compare our greatness in life top another, but whenever you live a life that requires a little more effort than others, to achieve certain goals, you’ll end up dealing with fake friends. These are the people who pose as if they are really your friend but they are not. I like to call this experience “the false friendship” experience. These people only attach themselves to you because they can see what potential you have. Just because people come into your life and smile in your face, doesn’t guarantee that they are in your life for the right reason.  Some folks invite themselves to your table and look for something free to eat. In others words, be careful that you’re not allowing someone to have their freedom to pull on your greatness at your expense.

You may be calling someone a friend, who only likes being called your friend because it makes them look good in public. I've been there too. Having people to surround you, because it looked good for them. Who are you calling your friend that you should be calling a leach? They just latch on to you so that they can have a free ride to your destiny. Be careful. You are to blessed for this. You are going to, too many great places and you cannot allow the wrong people to come into your life and be a burden. These people are a burden; you don’t even know it and they don’t either. They are just a thorn to your future.

Your real friend will be by your side through thick and thin. Through the good times and the hard times. True friends are standing with you when you win and when you fail. They don’t take sides with your enemies. They don’t get jealous of your success either. The people that are posing as your friends, but are really just latching on to you because of your greatness, will soon expose themselves. This is how it happens.

You see, it’s a great thing when other people can see your potential. There’s nothing wrong with that. The problem comes when they decide that it’s a good idea to become your friend only to benefit them. That their selfish spirit. What will happen is, if they don’t see you giving them what they want in the right amount of time, their true colors will begin to show. They will become frustrated and without them, even realizing it, their start acting as your enemy. They will begin to distant themselves from you. They will become true friends with people who hate you. It’s strange how this happens, but its so true. They will become extremely critical of your good success.

You’ll reflect back and remember how at one time they were your biggest fan. They supported you all the way. When they begin to see that life as your friend isn’t about freebies and handouts, you’ll find out what their true motives were and you will then know that you have been entertaining a false friendship. Here’s a great tip: if you ever notice that this person that you’ve been calling friend, can’t be your friend around other people, there’s a problem. For example, I remember a time I was riding in my call with someone that I thought was my friend. Someone called his phone and asked him about what he was doing at the moment. My supposed friend choked, as if he was caught off guard, needing to make up a lie, and he did. He lied and said he was busy and frustrated at work, when in fact he was riding with me to the music store.

How ironic is that? He couldn’t even claim me as a friend to others. Why? He wasn’t really my friend. This is also a sign that someone that you are calling friend is friend with someone who hates you. Just be careful out there. Don’t fall for everybody’s kindness. Ask God to give you discernment, that you would be able to see when someone is giving you the experience of false friendship. God will connect you with people who have the right motives as it concerns you. He’ll put people in your life that don’t want anything from you but to see you be great.

This is why your connections are so important. Don’t get caught up in the hype of having a large circle of friends. You may have a good 3 or 5, but you know what, as long as your circle is tight, you will all grow and be great together. When there are no enemies on the inside of your circle, enemies on the outside have no power to destroy what’s real.

Enjoy Where You Are Now

Enjoy Where You Are Now

 Marcus Gill

Marcus Gill

 

Take a moment with me and imagine that you’re standing in front of a tall staircase. Now, in this vision, you have a desire to get to the top of this staircase. So instead of just standing there looking at the staircase you decide to take the first step. As you are taking the first step, your excitement about reaching the top of the staircase, causes you to look at the top of the staircase instead of focusing on the step that you’re on and the next step that you need to take next. So, what happens next? You stumble. You have to start over. You keep slipping because it’s impossible for you to take each step correctly if you’re always looking at the last step at the top. So even though the top of the staircase is there for you to reach it, it takes much longer for you to get there because you’re focused on the last step at the top, rather than being focused on the step you’re on and the next step in front of you. Now, let’s come out of our vision and step into our reality.

That sounds just like our lives. We all have a place that we want to be. You have that dream relationship in mind. Those dream friendships with amazing people in your mind. You are planning for your financial situation to get better. You want your body to be healed. You’ve started a business and you can’t wait to see your business expand beyond your wildest dreams.  But you also end up wondering, why it takes so long? I believe that most of us get stymied because we don’t know how to simply enjoy the place that we are in for the now. It’s a great thing to have a vison for your future, but you cannot be so focused on the future that you forget to plan an prepare for the best of your “right now.” If you’re always looking to the future but ignoring your today, you’ll always stumble and your progress with be bewildered. You have to enjoy where you are now.

I'm not telling you to enjoy where you are now so much that you don’t want to grow and get better, I'm just trying to help you to appreciate what you do have. Maybe you’re hoping for a better group of friends. You’ve been praying and asking God to connect you with people who have more influence or more money. Take time to appreciate the people that you have in your life now. God may end up raising up one of your current friend to become the type of person that you dream of being friends with. You may be in a relationship and you have admired the long-lasting joyful relationships of others. You now have a desire to have that type of experience as well.  You can’t be forcing your spouse to be like them or get upset because you and your mate haven’t reached that plateau just yet. You must learn to enjoy your now moments while thanking God that better days are indeed ahead. Your business is going to thrive. your ideas and visions will come to pass. But don’t look to the top of the staircase. You must look at where you are and make the best of it. I know it seems like getting to the top takes too long, but it doesn’t mean that God doesn’t want to bless you, it just means that you’re under construction. You must be ok with that.

God has a special way of conditioning us for where we are. I read in the bible where the Apostle Paul said, that he learned to be content in whatever state he was in. So many have confused the content of his words. When he spoke these words, he wasn’t saying that he was so content that he didn’t want to ever change, he was letting us know that no matter where I am, I've learned to be grateful for the moment. You have to be the same way. You may not be where you want to be, but be grateful. You may not have all that you want to have, but be grateful. God will condition you for your now moment.

When God conditions us, he is training us. So many times, we go through those tough moments of knowing our potential, but not seeing the results of it. I can tell you about many moments in my life, where I wanted to just throw in the towel. I knew that I could do certain things but it’s almost like it just wouldn’t happen. But, God began to condition me for those seasons. I say He began to, because God will only condition you if you let him. You must let Him train you. When the Lord has full reign over your life, he will influence you to do certain things and to think certain ways. Your faith and trust in God, will cause you to get in agreement with God concerning your now and your future.

Conditioning as everything to do with adapting. In order for you to truly enjoy where you are right now, you must be willing to adapt. When you adapt to where you are you are conforming to your current experience. Not to settle, but conforming in a sense of declaring, “I'm not going to fight where I am, I'm going to enjoy where I am knowing that this won’t last forever.”

Conditioning reminds me of an old saying that I used to hear in church where the saints would say, “Any way you bless me Lord, I’ll be satisfied.” As you are under construction in life, take some time to pay attention to what’s happening around you now. There are so many lessons to be learned in your now. I always look back on the times that I didn’t appreciate so much because there were so many amazing lessons learned. Don’t wait until later to appreciate the “right now times.” Enjoy them now!

Everything that happens now, is just preparation for the future. Even if you’re uncomfortable with it, God will condition you for this season. Allow Him to do it. See the top of the staircase, but don’t ignore the step that you’re on and the step that’s in front of you. Don’t waste time stumbling because you’re in a rush to reach your goals. Learn as much as you can now and take your time.

If you allow God to condition you for the journey, you’ll reach your goals sooner that you think.

Grow Through Your Storm

Grow Through Your Storm

 Marcus Gill

Marcus Gill

 

I believe we've have all been through some storms. I mean, when you talk about quitting, the first thing most of us will think about would be the storms that we've been through. It's in the middle of these storms of life that we want to quit the most. What are these storms? They are the circumstances that we don't want to have. I mean, nobody just wakes ups and decides that they want to go through hell for the next 24 hours. Even in the natural, when we turn on the tv to check the weather, we get weary know that there's a storm coming. Why? Nobody just likes storms. First natural and then spiritual. Our spiritual storms come to knock us off track! They come to take up off focus and ruin our chances of reaching our destiny. Even as we are talking about how our lives are under construction, I think about a building. One that's in the process of being built. Even as the construction work is happening, though the building isn't complete, the storms that come during the process don't destroy the process.

The storm passes, and they keep in building. Even if a storm comes and does a little damage, it still doesn't stop the job from being completed. Why? Even the frame has been conditioned to handle the storms! You are the same way! You have been conditioned for any storm. As I just described what storms come to do previously, I believe that the Lord conditions us to see our storms not as pain, but as a part of our preparation for our future!  As I always say, the pain of my past, prepared me for the blessings of my future. You have to declare the same thing. If you're going through a storm right now, you have to declare, that you pain is just  preparing you. See the storm and a tool for strength. Don't tell yourself that, it's time to quit, or it's time to give up. No, start saying this storm is just a part of my conditioning. I thank God for the storms that I've been through. They just made me stronger. That's should be your same testimony. That everything that you've already been through it just made you better. The storm that you are facing right now, is making you better. 

It's it amazing how God is a God of patterns. I think about David in the Bible. How when he was getting ready to face Goliath, everybody though that he had lost his mind. But he didn't he had the confidence to face Goliath because of how he made it through previous storms with the victory. They asked him about what it was that gave him the confidence to face a warrior like Goliath. David was able to testify about the fact that he faced and lion and got the victory. He had a fight with a bear, and came out with total victory. So he already knew what he was capable of because of the previous conditioning that he has already had. God is a God of patterns. If He's brought you through before, He'll bring you through again.

Not only does god bring you though the storms but He allows you to grow through the storms. It's like growing pains. They hurt for a little while but sooner than you expect it you see why you have to go through it. Growth was taking place. That's how I feel when I look back on my storms. It wasn't to destroy me, it was to help me grow. I've adopted this principle for living and I hope you will too. We don't just "go" through the storm, but we "grow" through the storm. When you just go though, you come out and that's great, but it doesn't suggest that you've gained anything from it.

So many times people say, don't ever look back on you past. As much as I do agree with the intentions of that statement I have to make and acceptation. Let me explain. When a person looks back on their past to re-live it because that's their comfort zone and it prevents them from moving forward, then yes, don't look back. If you want to look back on your past because you want to be stuck in that past pain, then yes, I'm going to discourage you from doing so. But, if you're line me and you value the fact that you didn't just go through your storms by you grew through your storms, then I would encourage you to look back, only with the purpose of reflecting on the lessons that you've learned because of those past experiences. Look back and see where you have come from. Look back as a reminder of some of the places that you need to return to no more. Look back to remember the mistakes that you've made in the past. Many people end up repeating the same mistakes of their past because they never grew from those mistakes. They never grew for their falls.

I thank God for ever painful experience of my life. Why? Because it made me greater than what I was. I grew. Growth took place through and after very bad relationship. Growth took place after ever door that was shut in my face in ministry. Growth took place when I found out that my closest friends were actually my worst enemies. Growth took place through every storm. At one time, I would see all of my pain as a destiny blocking circumstance, but then I grew to realize it was conditioning for my destiny!

Let the conditioning happen. It's painful yes, but it's all a part of the process. Go through your tough times but grow through the touch times. You may not learn every lesson through the first storm, but when another storm comes you'll be prepared to face it with confidence knowing that everything will be alright. When you see a storm coming, don't get fearful, by start rejoicing for the fact that growth is about to take place!

This Season Will Change

This Season Will Change

 Marcus Gill

Marcus Gill

 

I would say that the best part of the conditioning season, is that it doesn’t last forever. Thank God, right? I mean, we can find many things about this time of our life, that we love, but surely, we don’t want it to last forever. It reminds me of how the greatest athletes train. The work so hard during the off season, to prepare for game time. Game time may not be for weeks, but they go through intense conditioning, in order to be prepared to go out when its game time and win. They have a conditioning season, before the competing season begins. I remember when I took my stab at sports. In high school I tried out for football. Needless to say, I didn’t work out, but I did learn many lessons. First lesson I learned, was that I can’t go through life trying to be somebody or something that I wasn’t called to be. Aside from that, I'm still talking about conditioning. I didn’t know that before tryouts, I should have been preparing. I should have been training. I should have been working out and gearing up for the tryouts. I got out there on the field and everybody ran over me. I thought that it was enough for me to put on pads and a uniform and run out there and be a star. I found out quickly that I was not conditioned to play football. I hadn’t been trained. As far as the rest of those guys, they had already been through their conditioning season and they were ready to go. First natural and then spiritual. How often do you step out and try to accomplish things that you haven’t been conditioned for?

So many times, in life, we move into places or start doing things that we haven’t been prepared to do. I know for a fact, that I could probably be much further along in life, if I would have never stepped out and tried to accomplish things that I wasn’t ready for. It’s called moving too soon. Having confidence is a great thing, but conference without proper preparation will lead to failure. You must do the ground work. Then you have to be patient enough to allow what you don’t to prepare for the next level to work. The reason why lots of people, miss out on the fullness of being prepared and conditioned for the next level, is because they don’t realize that the conditioning season will not last forever.  It feels like a long time, but it is really just temporary. It’s a part of the process.

Don’t skip the process. There is a season of process that we all have to go through before we reach our destiny. We have to go through it. it is a must. Nobody, can truly step into their season of greatness, without going through the process. Get through the process knowing that this season will change. It’s just like the athletes. They endure their conditioning season and then they eventually practice specifically for game time. What do we learn here? Even in sports, there is constant preparation. Conditioning season turns to practice season and then we are ready to compete. Imagine how many athletes would give up, if they were trained to believe that the conditioning season would last forever. They would all quit. But there is a level of constancy that comes with the conditioning. They know that everything that they do comes with a purpose. Even more so, the conditioning season for athletes is a very painful time. The drills that they run are excruciating. The exercises that they perform are stressful. Often times you hear about guys, passing out, getting injured and unfortunately, we’ve heard of occasions where athletes have lost their lives, while performing conditioning drills. As we are certainly not looking forward to this conditioning season of our lives be one to cause death, we know that there are some unwelcomed experiences that we have to face during this time. But it’s going to be alright. Even as we go through storms and hard times, when you know that it’s all a part of the process. We don’t lose our cool. We keep on going. We keep on working. We keep on pushing. When you know that this season isn’t going to las forever, you will get excited knowing that game time is coming soon. Your game time is right around the corner. It won’t be long before your season changes and you realize that all that you’ve been through prepared you for your destiny.

Don’t try to take shortcuts. When we try to take short cuts, we delay our arrival. You actually slow yourself down when you try to find ways around the journey. It happens in real life sometimes too. Have you ever had a time when you were on a road trip and decided to take a shortcut, all to find out that it wasn’t a shortcut at all? Its real. I've done it many times. I always end up saying, “I should have stayed on the road that the GPS to me to stay on.” Oh, the agony of being in a rush, all to take what you think is a shortcut, to still arrive at your destination later than originally expected.

That’s how we mess up in life as well. God sets us on a certain path. When we think that God’s way is not the best way, we try to come up with our own plan. We will always fail. I know that you’re tired of being in this same position, going through the same drills in life, but hold on. After a while you’re coming out with the victory. You’re not going through this season for nothing. You’re just preparing for game time. As the Bible says, we must count it all joy, when we face problems. When we run from conditioning, we run from preparation. When you run from preparation, you actually run from your victory. Don’t quit during the conditioning season. It may last a little longer that you would like it to, but it’s all worth it. this season will not last forever. Its working for you’re good. Your time to shine, is coming soon. Work hard now. Let God condition you now. You’re under construction and ok with the conditioning process. Get through it, learn all that you can, and be prepared for game time. The victory is already yours!

Don't Waste Time With The Wrong People

Don't Waste Time With The Wrong People

 Marcus Gill

Marcus Gill

 

In June 2016 I made a video on the beach in a beautiful place called Long Beach, New York. It was a nice beautiful day. Dominique and I were just dating at the time but she was always so supportive of my ministry. I asked her that day to hold my iPhone and record a video of me preaching on the beach. I know that she probably thought that I was strange but I had a word in me that I wanted to share with the world.

I found a nice position on the beach where the sun would shine directly in my face and the beach waters and sand were right behind me. There was even a family behind me flying a kite. The scenery for the video was perfect, but the message in the video shook the world. I titled the video as, “Stop wasting time with the wrong people!” In the video, I began talking about how often times we connect with people who mean us no good. We end up going through life calling the wrong people our friends. It becomes a waste. Unfortunately, there are people in our lives who are just taking up space. They are blocking the space that’s needed for the right people to show up.

In that video that reached over 15 million views, I talked about how there are people in our lives that think that we will never be blessed without them. Oh my, this is a big one. How many times have you found yourself connected to people who think that all of the glory belongs to them? I've been there.

I was once in a relationship with an individual when I was in my twenties, and it was bad. She and her family were the type of people who thought that they were the only people in the world who were worth something. In their mind, anyone who was connected to them was great. Anyone who wasn’t, was not so great. Please by all means don’t be connected to them, and then disconnect from them. Now you’re just of the devil; at least in their eyes. It’s funny how your life gets much better when you disconnect yourself from the wrong people. You begin to flourish. You find your freedom. Maybe you need to be free from feeling like you need to impress certain people in your life. The wrong will compete with you. They will always try to find ways to keep you beneath them. Now, the relationship I'm talking about here had a lot to do with dimming my light. This young lady was only comfortable with my presence because at that time I wasn’t successful. Here’s a good time for a major point. Some people only like you, because they perceive you to be beneath them. As soon as you begin to grow they will become intimidated by your growth and began to try their best to dim your light of success. I know this all too well. But remember, when the hand of God is on your life, nobody can stop you from being blessed! Ok, back to my testimony, it’s now many years later and that same individual that I was dating back, is still obsessed with trying to ruin my success. But its not working. Even if you so happen to make the mistake of connecting with the wrong people for a season and then getting away, when they try to dim your life, they will only make you shine brighter.

Having the wrong people in your life will cause you to miss your blessing. There are some places that God wants to take you. He won’t release you to that place until you stop wasting time with the wrong folks. I like to think about a ship. There are some folks that need to be thrown overboard! I always say, I'm full of love so I will at least give them a life vest. LOL! Metaphorically speaking, your journey is being hindered. It’s not until you remove some folks out of your life, you will not reach your destiny. I'm talking about removing the people who are wrong for your life. There are some people who are right for others, but they are not right for you. You must know the difference.

Whenever you realize that people are draining you and not helping you gain, they are not good for you. People who pull you away from the goodness of the lord, need to be pulled out of your life.

There are some people in my life, that I don’t mind talking to everyday. Why? We talk about valuable things. We talk about vision. We talk about dreams and making major plans. We don’t gossip and waste energy on foolish things. But, we talk about the goodness of the Lord and we celebrate in advance for what God is doing in our lives. We aren’t afraid to be happy for each other. We find was to push each other to the next level. No conversation is a waste of time. This are some of the characteristics of the right people that need to be in your life.

Then you have the people who waste time, energy and space. They never speak well of others. In fact, that’s a trait that you need to pay close attention to as well. If they are always speaking wrong of others, there is a great chance that when you’re not around, they are speaking wrong of you too! Don’t waste time having those negative conversations with them. Stop wasting time with small thinkers. People who try to limit your ability to dream big. You need to be around people who will encourage you to keep dreaming big.

You have to be around people who speak the right words. Surrounding yourself with people who always speak down, will cause you to start speaking down. You don’t need any negativity rubbing off on you. It reminds me of the gym that I work out in sometimes. They have a certain rule plastered all over the gym. I've adopted my own rule and I want you too do it as well. Make your life and no negativity zone.

Let it be your reputation, that no drama, no negativity or no things that is not of God, is welcomed in your space. Don’t waste time with the wrong folks. Anybody who pulls you away from your best, is not the best for you to be connected to. When you are connected to the right people, no time with them is a waste. Time with the right people is always worth it.