FARGO — Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Sow a thought and you reap an action; sow an act and you reap a habit; sow a habit and you reap a character; sow a character and you reap a destiny.” Our destiny is tied directly to and starts with our thoughts.

In the Bible, Paul reminds us how important our thoughts are. In Philippians 4:8 he writes, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things.”

In last week’s column, I wrote about the importance of thinking. If you change a thought, you will change your future. Every action starts with a thought. Every attitude starts with a thought. Every destination started, not with someone else’s action, but with the thought you selected.

I threw out a challenge to help you develop your thinking. As a founding member of the John Maxwell Team, I have access to a discount rate, only $99, to an online course by John C. Maxwell called, “How Successful People Think.” You can learn more and register at www.live2lead.com/fargo.

A possibility thinker sees opportunity everywhere. What is possible in your future if you take this course and your thinking improves? What if you were to buy the course for a child or grandchild and they improve their thinking? Could it possibly make a difference in their life 50 years from now? I think so! Maybe you take the course together with a friend or family member; practice the age-old truth of iron sharpening iron. Is it possible that for $99 and an investment of your time a new path of growth and development could take place? I encourage you to go to www.live2lead.com/fargo and seize this opportunity.

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One of my mentors is a highly successful pastor. He started a church in the south over 20 years ago and God has used him to help thousands of people grow spiritually. His church impacts over 20,000 people every weekend. After spending time with him it was very clear he spends a lot of time thinking. When I discovered this, I assumed he was an introvert and liked quiet, alone, thinking time.

After spending several round tables with him I discovered more of his personality and he shared that his wife was an introvert. What hit me so hard is that he has mastered the discipline of investing time in thinking. It does not come “natural” for him or easy for his personality. Rather than constantly surrounding himself with people, activity and accomplishment, he intentionally and methodically dedicates time and energy to thinking.

He said, that as a leader, when implementing a plan, he never should be asked a question that he hasn’t already thought about. He loves it when he is asked a question, because it doesn’t take him by surprise. He affirms the question and the person asking the question. He may ask them their thought. But the beautiful thing is he has already anticipated it and thought about it. He is prepared for the conversation.

Sow your thoughts wisely. Your future and the future of those you love are depending on it! God bless you.