Thursday, September 19, 2013

Matthew Kelly: Becoming the Best Version of Yourself

What’s Your World View??

1/100 people go to college
1/3 of the world is dying from hunger
1/3 of the world is dying from over eating
à  What did you eat for dinner?

We need to be challenged to re-determine our world view

How is the best way to live?
-          You want what you believe will make you happy
-          We all have an overwhelming desire for happiness; that is how God made us
Grace builds on nature: The supernatural life does not negate or destroy the natural world. Rather, grace sanctifies, elevates and renews nature.

Grace also works through nature. We are not just temples of the Holy Ghost, but instruments of the Spirit as well. We are collaborating with God in extending the boundaries of His Kingdom on Earth of love and peace.

-        Our culture says happiness = pleasure
o    This is WRONG
o      Pleasure can’t be sustained beyond the activity producing it
§  Stop eating, pleasure stops
§   What else in our lives cause use momentary pleasure but not lasting happiness?
-          Happiness – is sustained past the moment producing it
o   Come home from a hard day and don’t feel like working out, you just want to lie on your couch and be lazy. But you convince yourself to get up and go to the gym, after you work out you may be tired, but you will always be glad you went. Where if you were to lay down and watch TV and eat cheese dip you will enjoy it for those two hours and then after feel like crap and regret it.

  What is the best way to live?
-    It’s not the attitude: ‘what is the least I can do and still get by/ still get to Heaven’
-   To look at this we have to detach ourselves from our culture for a while.

If we look into our lives we get a sense that something is missing.

Matthew Kelly was presented with a challenge as a teenager

-          Stop by church for 10 minutes on your way to school each day.
-    After a few days of walking by the church, he finally went in and it actually felt peaceful
-     First few days he just went in and planned the rest of his day
-     Then he decided to “actually” pray and just started listing off all the things he wanted from God that day -> instructions for God
-   Then one day he had a rough morning and was worried about the day and when he sat down he started talking to God and asking what God though he should do with his situation.  
o   This was a huge turning point, releasing your life into God’s hands because he knows what is best for you.
*** Our lives change when our habits change.

We become out habits:
-   Your actions determine your habits; habits determine your character; your character determines your destiny 
-   Reverse this; think of your destiny; WHO do you want to be in the future?
o    Now decide your habits so they will help you reach that destiny

Silence will change your life – take time to sit in silence every day; determine who you really are, your hopes, your dreams, the areas in your life that need changing.
-   Often we try to block this out with noise and business, but it leads to unhappiness.
-   No one plans to live a life of quiet desperation

1.    Get yourself in a classroom of silence.
2.    Understand that we live in a relativistic culture – the idea that there is no real truth.
a.    Tolerance: (the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with)
                                          i.     --the supreme virtue of secularism
b.    Fact: you don’t have to tolerate good things.
c.    Challenge: look for the truth in everything, it’s there
d.    The knowledge of who Jesus is; is disappearing.
                                          i.    We think we know Jesus – we don’t.
e.    What does society say about Jesus
                                          i.    That He was a nice guy. – this can’t be true.
                                        ii.    Jesus claimed to be the son of God. If he isn’t, then he was a HUGE liar.  You can’t even say he was a good teacher
3.    Words have value based on who speaks them
a.    Someone with high character says something you don’t agree with, you are going to rethink it and try to understand their view.
4.    A question everyone must answer: WHO DO YOU SAY JESUS IS?
a.    So why don’t we follow him?

Jesus had radical teachings---
-   Problem: most of us think we know the Gospel: we don’t.
-   “love and pray for your enemies”
o   Do we?
-   Culture wants us to live a shallow life: to simply be a consumer
-   God’s vision: for us to become the best version of ourselves.
o   He created us with something in mind.
o   There are 1000 + moments in our day when we have the choice to choose to be the best version of ourselves.
o   Just takes thirty seconds: will this make me the best version of myself?
-   Who were our best mentors and coaches?
o   The ones who brought out the best version of ourselves.
-   We get more fulfillment when we work to get better character.
-   Goal of marriage?
o   To help wife/husband & kids become the best version of themselves.

5.    Want to make your life better?
a.    Look at your goals and meaning of your life.
                                          i.    Will you not be happier as the best version of yourself?
                                        ii.    What in my life will sooner or later strike me down? What is my rattle snake?
b.    There is no rubbish of “I didn’t know it was wrong”
                                          i.    99.9% of the time we know the right answer and if we choose it:
 We will be happy

-   God has given us the ability to choose, the ability to dream.
o   We can see bigger and better in the future and can see what we need to do now to reach that dream.

-   2 excuses: I’m too old. I’m too young.
o   Mozart was eight years old when he wrote his first symphony
o   Dimitrion Yordanidis was ninety-eight years old when he ran a marathon in seven hours and thirty three minutes, in Athens, Greece
-   Age is not an excuse not to change your life.

-   The world today is more interested in self-expression than having a self that’s worth expressing.

God, things are a mess: how can I help?
-   most people overestimate what they can get done in a day and underestimate what they can get done in a week.
o   When we say yes to the stuff that isn't for us, we miss out on the stuff that is just for us.
§  The only thing staying in a relationship you know isn't leading to marriage does, is stop you from meeting the perfect person God has planned for you to marry.
§  Being overly involved in too many activities only takes away from the quality time you were supposed to give to someone to help them through some of life’s tough problems.
-   When you leave this room, don’t not do anything.

How do you get out of your own little world?
-  ----> > Become the most generous person you know.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Boot Camp Announcements!

Here are some extra deets (details) about the upcoming Student Missionary Boot Camp!

Registration envelopes are available at the front desk of Newman, please return them to the front desk or a missionary by Monday, September 23!

Please meet at Newman on, Friday, September 27th at 4pm to carpool out to Camp Kitaki! We will need drivers for those who don't have vehicles so please meet at Newman so we can get that all figured out.

The retreat ends on Sunday. September 29th at 2pm.

We are all praying a novena for the success of this retreat. It is a novena to the Holy Spirit (surprise, surprise!) and the novena can be found via hard copy at the front desk or via web-based copy via the Facebook page (here).

Packing List
-sleeping bag
-a writing utensil (pen, pencil, quill, etc)
-comfortable and modest clothing

If you have special needs (dietary, emotional, I'm-going-to-be-late, etc) please talk to one of the missionaries! Or email me if that's easier (

If you have questions or concerns please let us know. It's going to be a great weekend!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


FOCUS Student Missionary Events for 2013-2014

September 13: Upper Room 7pm-9pm

September 27-29: Student Missionary Boot Camp

October 25: Upper Room 7pm-10pm

November 15: Upper Room 7pm-10pm

January 3-7: Student Leadership Summit

January 31: Upper Room 7pm-10pm

February 21: Upper Room 7pm-10pm

March 14: Upper Room 7pm-10pm

April 11: Upper Room 7pm-10pm

May 2: Launch Night and Board Dinner 6pm

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

10 Reasons why you should come hear MATTHEW KELLY

On September 9, at 8:30pm Matthew Kelly is coming to UNL and speaking in the Union.

That sentence alone should be enough to get your butts there, but if you need more convincing, here are 10 reasons why you should come on September 9, at 8:30 to hear him speak.

10. He is from Australia and has an Australian accent.
That one is pretty self explanatory.

9. He is a prolific writer.
He has written a ton of very successful books like;
"Rediscover Catholicism", "The 7 Levels of Intimacy", "The Rhythm of Life", "The Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic"

8. And he gives them away for cheap so that Catholics all over the place can have these resources.
You can check out his website here to investigate said resources.

AND if you come to the event you get a FREE COPY of "Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic" and the chance to have Matthew Kelly sign it!

7. He is an entertaining, dynamic, and engaging speaker.
Catholics are all about speakers and sometimes well-meaning speakers can be a little dry, but not Matt (we are not on an actual first name basis). You can check out the Dynamic Catholic YouTube channel to listen to some snippets of his talk about the 7 pillars of Catholicism.

6. He has audio CDs that I actually listen to.
I always want to listen to motivation speakers in the car instead of the Top 40 garbage but rarely do I make it past the introductions of these CDs. But I've listened to almost every single one of Matthew Kelly's talks. You can check out excerpts via Lighthouse Catholic Media's website.

5. He reaches a wide audience.
It doesn't matter if you've been to Catholic school your whole life, have a degree in Theology, just became Catholic, or aren't Catholic at all; the way Matthew Kelly speaks gets right to the heart of things regardless of where you are in your faith journey. Who doesn't want to become the best version of themselves?

5a. So bring your Bible study, friends, dorm mates, roommates, class mates, family, neighbors, etc.

4. He is a partner for Floyd Consulting
Floyd Consulting is a consulting company based out of Chicago that helps business create the best version of themselves through goal setting, training, retreat, speakers (like Matthew Kelly), and creating a balanced work life.

3. But seriously it's a big deal
Here is a very impressive list of many of the companies (many of them Fortune 500) who use Floyd Consulting.

2. He says great things like this:
In an Interview for Catholic Digest (whole interview found here)

"What advice would you give to a Catholic struggling with the Church today?

Explore it. Most people don’t understand what it is. If there’s any issue that you massively disagree with, delve into that. There are answers there. Our personal biases and prejudices get in the way. Most of the time when we’re saying the Church is wrong, we’re just saying it’s inconvenient. That doesn’t mean it’s not true."

1. And things like this:

“The notion of freedom proclaimed by the modern world is anti-discipline. But true freedom cannot be separated from discipline.”  Rediscover Catholicism

“Many people falsely believe that if you want to be holy, you are not allowed to enjoy life...Holiness brings us to life. It refines every human ability. Holiness doesn't dampen our emotions; it elevates them. Those who respond to God's call to holiness are the most joyful people in history. They have a richer, more abundant experience of life, and they love more deeply than most people can every imagine. They enjoy life, all of life.”  Rediscover Catholicism.

In general, we are extremely fortunate that Matthew Kelly will be visiting our campus with all his wisdom and Australian accent-ness. 

So we will see you on Monday, September 9 at 8:30 in the Union Ballroom. If you have any questions you can ask any FOCUS missionary or you can email me at !