Category: honesty

Staying Positive Works — Strong Spirit

Strong Spirit

Strong Spirit

This painting was done in Painter, using oils, liquid inks and pencils.  I am using it because it is entitled Strong Spirit.  That is what I have.

I started this blog to write about fibromyalgia and lyme disease.  My intention was to write how my belief in a God of my understanding, coupled with affirmations, gratitude and positive thought had allowed me to find a peaceful, fulfilling life in spite of these chronic illnesses.

Then, practicing those things led me back to being able to do art, and art has pretty much been the focus of this blog.

Today, I want to write about positive thinking.

I came across the idea of having God in my life and thinking positive about 30 years ago.  I began reading a lot of varied books on many religions.  I put together an idea of what God is for me, personally.  I believe there is something that holds us all together.  I believe that we are all connected in some way.  I believe that when I, or someone else, does something negative or harmful, it affects us all.

I believe in taking personal responsibility for myself and what I can change.  As I read and researched, I concluded that the only thing in this world that is possible for me to change is me.  I can’t change you.  I can, however, change how I react to you.

This was working fine, and life was going along real sweet.  I was a textile/mixed media artist.  My work was starting to sell.  I was having shows in galleries.  I had been in a group show at a very prestigious museum here in Seattle.  I won awards for my art.  Life looked good.  Positive thinking and a belief in a God of my understanding was working.

Oops, I got sick.  I didn’t just get sick, I got completely disabled and unable to do anything but lay in bed and wonder when I was going to die.  Doctors said I was crazy.  No one, absolutely no one would help me.

Friends and family walked away.  As they left, they said “Screw, you.  You’re a little liar, you’re not sick, just crazy.”

OK.  I got mad.  I got angry, I got resentful, hateful, mean-spirited, the whole thing.  I threatened to divorce my husband of over 30 years.  I was one sick, miserable person.

Where had it all gone?  What was happening?  One day I woke up, and could stand myself no longer.  I vaguely recalled what I had practiced just before I became sick.  I was very dubious.  I figured, this stuff works when things go well, God is there when I’m happy.  But what happens when the pedal hits the metal?  It’s all gone.

Hmm.  Perhaps I had missed something.  “OK”, I said, find something to be positive about.  What?  I can’t remember what I found, but I found one small thing.  Like breathing or something.  I practiced being grateful.  I said affirmations.  I worked at it.  I was not convinced, but I went on with the teeny, tiny bit of faith I had left.

It worked.  Just as negative things build and grow larger and become overwhelming, so do positive things.  It built up.  I found more things to be positive about.

Don’t get me wrong, it was slow going.




I don’t know if anyone has noticed, but I’ve used Shakespeare quotes lately on my home page.  The quotes from Shakespeare have become such a part of our world, that we often don’t know that many common-sense sayings are from him.

His common sense has guided us since the 1600’s.

Today, I used a quote on honesty.  Look to the right, and you’ll see it.  No legacy is so rich as honesty.  When I chose this quote today, I thought to myself, yes, this is now about me.  Part of my legacy is that I am honest.

That wasn’t always the case.  I was an only child.  Not having other children, I think, caused my parents to be unrealistic about what they could expect.  They tended to be very strict and have unrealistic expectations.

This, in turn, caused me to lie to them about what I did and where I went.  Lying as a teenager, became a way of life for me.  It started me on a path, where dishonesty, in my opinion, was acceptable.  That acceptance of lies led me to further dishonest in all areas of my life.

About 1983, I came to realize that this was not an acceptable way to live.  I made a decision that if I wanted good things in my life, I needed to clean up my life.  I needed to be as honest as I possibly could be.  It was hard at first.  Always telling the truth.  There were always those handy excuses like, well, those corporations screw people over all the time, everyone cheats on their taxes, who will ever know.

Who will ever know?  That’s a big one.  I will know. The God I believe in will know.  It will be my karma to have dishonesty in my life. I believe that what I put out there is what will be returned to me.  I don’t want dishonesty in any form in my life.

I believe that dishonesty poisons us spiritually, emotionally and physically.  It interferes with me receiving the good that God has for me.

I didn’t turn into an honest person overnight.  Whenever I have changed a behavior, I find that it takes time.  It is the two steps forward and three steps back that applies to me.  But I’ve done it.  It is now over 30 years since I made a decision to be an honest person, and I am.

I’m still not perfect at it, but I keep working at it.  I still don’t know what to do about those situations where a friend has a new dress that looks ugly, and she loves it.  I still try to be positive about the dress.  I try to say, things like, “wow, you really got one!” and smile a lot.  That is still cheating and not telling the truth.  I make sure not to cut those corners like that on the big issues.

I have to say that I am proud of myself for being an honest person, and the feeling I get from that is fabulous.

The art used in this blog is a page of seamless tiles made from one of my abstracts.  These tiles are what I was using to paint with my paintings in two previous blogs.  I’m Painting With My Paintings and More Paintings With My Paintings.

God and Honesty

Treasure 2 by Kerry C. Mitchell

In my last blog, I said I would write about how changing my life got me into a positive flow of energy that I call God. 

My coming to believe in God happened on one night.  Usually with  most people, it is a slow awakening process to come to understand God. 

I believe  there is an energy flow out there that we are all a part of.  We can either choose to take part in it or go against it.  It is just like a river; go with the flow or fight a constant battle upstream. 

So what did I find that puts me in this flow, that brings me happiness and peace? 

One area that needed immediate attention was lying, cheating and stealing.  This did not appeal to me at all.  I thought I benefitted from all the dishonesty. 

I told lies.  I stole things.  I cheated.  I thought this was the easy way.  My rationalizations included everybody does it, it won’t hurt anyone, it’s a big corporation, etc.  Those reasons are not true.  Not everyone lies, cheats or takes what is not theirs. 

I quit. 

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