Three key words to remember: weigh, count and measure. Now why weigh, count and measure? To see what your results are from your activity, your attitude and your philosophy. If you find that the results are not to your liking, there are only three places to look. Your philosophy needs to be fine-tuned, your attitude needs to be strengthened or your disciplines need extra skill. But that’s it. Activity, attitude and philosophy create results.
Now on results I teach that life expects you to make measurable progress in reasonable time. But, you must be reasonable with time. You can’t say to someone every five minutes, How are you doing now? That’s too soon to ask for a count. Guy says, “I haven’t left the building yet, give me a break!” Now you can’t wait five years—that’s too long. Too many things can go wrong waiting too long for a count to see how you’re doing.
When I built my first home for my family in Idaho all those years ago, before I started construction, I would take my friends and associates out to the vacant property and give them a tour of the house. Is that possible? Is it possible to take someone on a tour through an imaginary house? And the answer is, “Yes, of course.” “Here is the 3 car garage,” I used to say, and my friends would look and say, “Yes, this garage will hold 3 cars.” I could really make it “live”. I would take them on a tour throughout the house… “Here is the fireplace, and look, this side is brick and the other side is stone.” I could make it so real… “Follow me through the rest of the house. Take a look through the picture window here in the kitchen, isn’t the view great?” One day, I made the house so real that one of my friends bumped his elbow on the fireplace. I mean, it was that real. So, the first step of turning nothing into something is to imagine the possibilities. Imagine ALL of the possibilities. One of the reasons for seminars, sermons, lyrics from songs and testimonials of others is to give us an idea of the possibilities; to help us imagine and to see the potential.
Now here is the second step for turning nothing into something, you must BELIEVE that what you imagine IS possible for you. Testimonials like, “If I can do it, you can do it” often become a support to our belief. And we start believing. First we imagine it’s possible. Second, we start to believe that what’s possible is possible for us.
We might also believe because of our own testimonial. Here is what your testimonial might say, “If I did it once, I can do it again. If it happened for me before, it could very well happen again.” So we believe not only the testimonials of others who say, “If I can do it, you can do it. If I can change, you can change. If I can start with nothing, you can start with nothing. If I can turn it all around, you can turn it all around.” Then we also have the support of our own testimonial, if we’ve accomplished something before. “If we did it once, we can do it again. If we did it last year, we can do it this year.” So those two things together are very powerful. Now, we do not have actual substance yet, although it is very close.
Again, step one is to imagine the possibilities. Step two is to imagine that what is possible is possible for you. Here is what we call step two – faith to believe. In fact, one writer said this, “Faith is substance.” An interesting word: “substance”, the powerful ability to believe in the possibilities that are possible for you. If you have faith to believe… that faith is substance, substance meaning “a piece of the real.” Now it’s not “the real”, it’s not this podium, but it is so powerful that it is very close to being real and so the writer said, “The faith is a piece of, the substance of”. He then goes on to call it evidence, substance and evidence. It is difficult to call substance and evidence “nothing”. It is nothing in the sense that it cannot be seen except with the inner eye. You can’t get a hold of it because it isn’t YET tangible. But it is possible to turn nothing, especially ideas and imaginations, into something if you believe that it is now possible for you. That substance and evidence becomes so powerful that it can now be turned into reality.