Welcome to Positive Life Principles. I’m Karol Ladd, and I want this website to be a source of inspiration and strength to you as you serve and love the people around you. You will find resources to refresh you and help you use your gifts and talents to reach out and touch the lives of others. Sign up for my blog below in order to stay connected and receive an uplifting weekly message from me.
Fear tends to grip all of us in different areas and at different times in our lives. When we allow it to get the upper hand, it captures us in its net and keeps us from experiencing the abundant and fulfilling life God intends for us. “Where fear is,” the philosopher Seneca said, “happiness is not.”
The story is told of an old farmer who was sitting on the steps of his rickety shack when a stranger approached. Trying to initiate conversation, the stranger asked, “How’s your wheat coming along?” “Didn’t plant none,” the farmer replied. “Really?” said the stranger. “I thought this was good wheat country.” “I was afraid it would rain,” the farmer said. “How is your corn crop?” the stranger persisted. “Ain’t got none. Afraid of corn blight.” “Well, sir, how are your potatoes?” “Didn’t plant no potatoes either. Afraid of the potato bugs.” “Well, then, what in the world did you plant?” the exasperated stranger asked. “Nothin,” said the farmer. “I just played it safe.”
Oh, the stifling effect fear can have on our lives! Take a moment to stop, think and pray about an areas in your life where you are allowing fear to rob you of your joy – or worse, rob you of your desire to use your gifts and talents. It has often been said, “Courage is not the absence of fear; rather it is the ability to take action in the face of fear.”
This week, take an honest look at your fears and make a decision that you will not allow them to control your life. Instead turn your eyes upward and remember that you are not alone. Ask God to guide you and give you strength as you use the gifts and talents He has given you. Step forward one courageous step at a time.
For more positive insights check out: The Power of a Positive Woman
Throughout history we observe women who have used their strengths, gifts and talents for a greater purpose – all with individual strengths, all with personal weaknesses. Each with a divine purpose. Let’s take a brief carriage ride through history and meet some of the women who exemplified qualities that God used in great and lasting ways.
Creativity. Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) is recognized as one of the greatest poets of the nineteenth century. Peggy Anderson writes of her in Great Quotes from Great Women, “Emily Dickinson lived intensely, finding in her books, her garden, and friends the possibilities of rich experience and fulfillment.” After Emily’s death, over a thousand poems were discovered in her desk. She is estimated to have written a total of more than eighteen hundred poems, several hundred of which are considered to be among the finest ever composed by an American poet. Oddly enough, only a small number were published during her lifetime. Yet Emily’s gift remains with us to this day, as she says in her own words: “The poet lights the light and fades away. But the light goes on and on.”
Leadership. Born in 1820 as a slave in Maryland, Harriet Tubman escaped to Pennsylvania and to freedom in 1849. She earned enough money to return to the South and led her sister and her two children to freedom. Carrying a long rifle, she continued making trips back and forth from the South to the North, leading an estimated three hundred people to freedom along the secret network of safe houses dubbed the “Underground Railroad.” She became known as “Moses” to her people as she led them out of slavery to a better place. After the Civil War, Harriet opened a home for the aged and raised funds for schools for former slaves. She later worked with her friend Susan B. Anthony in the New England Suffrage Association. The impact of her love, courage, and leadership remains an example for us all.
Resourcefulness. During her high school years, Fannie Farmer (1857-1915) suffered paralysis from a stroke, causing her to discontinue her education. After her recovery she worked as a “mother’s helper” and acquired a keen interest in cooking. Resourceful and determined, she went on to study cooking at the Boston Cooking School, where she eventually became the director. She was the first person to institute the use of exact measurements in recipes, thereby guaranteeing more reliable results. In her lifetime she wrote numerous books and opened her own cooking school. Certainly all women can thank Miss Farmer for her lasting contribution to the science of cooking!
Compassion. Clara Barton was known as the “Angel of the Battlefield” during the Civil War. She established several free schools during the war and organized her own band of volunteers to distribute supplies to the battlefields, often driving a four-mule wagon team into the fields herself. After the war she set up a records bureau to help families searching for missing soldiers. Later Clara founded a military hospital in Europe during the Franco-Prussian War and was decorated with the Iron Cross for her services. It was in Europe that she first learned about the International Red Cross, inspiring her to organize an American branch in 1881. Today more than one million American Red Cross volunteers help millions of people each year.
Perseverance. Helen Keller showed us how to persevere and overcome great odds. Born in 1880, a severe illness left her unable to see or hear. But through the patient and persistent instruction of her teacher, Anne Sullivan, Helen went on to learn to read, write, and speak. She studied French and Greek at Radcliffe College and graduated in 1904. At the age of twenty-six she published her life story and became a well-known public figure and humanitarian. In her lifetime she lectured in over twenty-five countries and received several awards of great distinction. “It gives me a deep, comforting sense that things seen are temporal and things unseen are eternal.” Certainly her incredible accomplishments epitomize human potential in the face of adversity.
Mental fortitude. Marie Curie was a Polish-born French scientist who, along with her husband, Pierre, experimented extensively with uranium radiation. In 1903 the couple shared the Nobel Prize for physics with Henri Becquerel, making Marie the first woman to receive the Nobel Prize. After Pierres death in 1906, Marie continued her research and succeeded her husband as a professor of physics at the University of Paris. In 1911 she received a second Nobel Prize in chemistry, making her the first person to receive two Nobel Prizes. Not only were her discoveries helpful to mankind, but her example laid the groundwork for women in the field of science.
Determination. Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. She first took up aviation as a hobby, and after a series of record flights, she made a solo transatlantic flight from Harbour Grace, Newfoundland, to Ireland. In 1937 she attempted the first round-the-world flight traveling close to the equator. She took off on July 1 from New Guinea headed toward Rowland Island in the Pacific, but her plane vanished. A naval search found nothing, and it was eventually decided that she had been lost at sea. Although her death was a mystery, her courage and determination were unquestioned.
Physical strength. Mildred “Babe” Didrickson Zaharias was named “the greatest woman athlete of the first half of the twentieth century” by the Associated Press in 1950. During her high school years she excelled in basketball, which led to playing sports in the Amateur Athletics Union (AAU). She later took up track and field and again excelled, winning gold medals in javelin and 80-meter hurdles and a silver medal in high jump in the 1932 Olympic Games. Next Babe took up golf, winning an unprecedented seventeen consecutive golf tournaments and becoming the first American to win the Women’s British Open. Her success helped to open the door for women athletes in a wide variety of professional sports.
These women and many more offer a picture of inspiration for each of us. God has equipped each of us for a unique purpose in this world. It may be using our gifts behind the scenes or it may be doing something that all the world will see – either way, let’s use our gifts and talents to bless and strengthen others.
This is an excerpt from The Power of a Positive Woman
Gratitude: (noun) The quality of being thankful, readiness to show appreciation and to return kindness.
Thank you for your generous hearts this week for Engage Positive Parenting Initiative through North Texas Giving Day. I am truly grateful! Your thoughtfulness and kindness will go a long way in making a difference in the lives of parents and their children. The seeds you planted monetarily will grow into changed lives for generations to come. What a joy to partner together to make a positive impact in this world!
Does your heart bleed like mine when you think of children caught in the cycle of poverty? Several years ago I started Engage Positive Parenting Initiative, an outreach that is making a difference in the lives of parents and children in areas affected by poverty or adversity. Today, (North Texas Giving Day) we have you have the opportunity to help.
- $25 provides 25 Engage Parenting booklets
- $50 provides a class flip chart and certificates for parents
- $100 trains 4 volunteers or provides snacks for an entire session
- $275 provides for all the needs of an entire 8-week class
We invite you to participate. Engage Positive Parenting is part of the Women’s Non-profit Alliance, so the link you will use will be slightly different than the other links for North Texas Giving Day. Here’s the link to use:
Be sure to enter Engage Positive Parenting for the organization.
Thank you for your generosity and your commitment to Engage. We would be honored if you shared this info with your friends and family to let them know about our program. Please visit www.engageparenting.com for more info about this wonderful organization.
If given the opportunity to choose our path in life, most of us would pick the easier road with less bumps, pot holes and challenges. I know I would. Simply put, few of us would deliberately choose a difficult journey in life, one riddled with heart ache, pain and loss. Yet in a way, if we choose to be compassionate people, we are choosing to join into someone else’s pain. The word compassion actually means “with suffering.” The root word passion comes from the Latin word “suffering.” If we want to be compassionate people, then in a way, we are inviting suffering into our lives – the suffering of another person. How far are we willing to go to reach out and touch the life of someone else?
Recently I heard the results of a study by the Cato Institute stating, “Poverty is perpetuated through poor parenting.” That statement stuck with me. I must admit, my heart grieves for “at risk” kids who have little hope of breaking through the cycle of poverty. As I began thinking about what I could do to make a difference, My mind was flooded with the thought, “Karol, you go all over the nation teaching men and women how to be positive parents, why aren’t you going to the impoverished communities in your own city?”
That prompting led me to write a discussion-style curriculum for parents. The lessons enable moms and dads to recognize their responsibilities in raising their families, and guide them to positive action steps. With the concept in place, my next step was to figure out where to implement this unique parenting class. I didn’t know where to go, so I prayed and asked the Lord to show me. Funny thing, I opened up the newspaper and saw an article about Buckner Children and Family Services of North Texas. Buckner has an outreach program in one of the housing developments in Dallas. With a little bit of fear and trembling, I emailed them and asked if they were interested in parenting classes.
They said yes! Oh my, now I had to take a step of faith and step out of my comfort zone and into the lives of men and women that I had never met. I knew that I didn’t understand what their lives were like, but God did. So I prayed for God to love through me and make this a fruitful and meaningful time together with the parents. He answered that prayer! Since our start 4 years ago, God has done an amazing work and has allowed me to build bridges through loving relationships with the parents in the community. I call the program ENGAGE Positive Parenting Initiative, and we have trained over 60 volunteers and have touched lives in 12 different locations around Dallas and Fort Worth.
It’s time to build back the strength of the family in communities across the nation. I feel like a woman on a mission! Where is God calling you to take a step of faith and step out of your comfort zone?
If you would like to join in our mission through volunteering or praying, we invite you to join us:
We are participating in North Texas Giving Day on Sept 22. Here is the link and be sure to choose Engage Parenting in the Organization box. http://womensnpa.wpengine.com/donate/north-texas-giving-day/