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On Wednesday, I’m starting a fast, blistering, non stop 10 day trip to US and Canada. In those 10 days, I’ll be preaching in 10 cities. No joke. From Los Angeles to San Francisco to Vancouver to New Jersey to Maryland (invite your friends to join me.

Behind me was a balding middle aged man who had so much anger in his face, a rock would melt under his gaze. He cursed, “F_ck, I can’t stand waiting. This is driving me nuts. Don’t you just hate long lines?”

My silence was enough to tell him, “You have a choice to be happy or miserable.”

Because at that moment, I felt happy.

I was at peace with God and myself and the entire universe.

I ride planes a hundred times a year and I’ve long decided never to complain about the long lines.

Instead, I appreciate the special gifts that long lines give me.

Long lines force me to chat with a friend, to read a book, to plan for the next 50 years of my life, to pray, to be totally useless, and to do absolutely nothing. Oh what peace!

I know of some people who complain before the trip begins.

By doing so, they “create” the misery that they’ll experience. Because their complaints become self fulfilling prophecies.

Before each trip, I already make a deliberate decision and declare, “I will enjoy this amazing trip.”

The Bible says, “Life and death are in the power of the tongue.” I believe that. So before leaving for a trip, I confess, “My journey will be very blessed!”

I also do something that I learned from Olympic champions: In my mind, I visualize what I want to happen.

Part of an Olympic athlete’s training is visualization. Each morning, before he even runs, a sprinter will imagine his 100 meter dash. He imagines everything. The sound of the gun. The leap from the starting block. The wind on his face. The cheer of the crowd. The finish line’s ribbon on his chest. The gold medal around his neck.

And if it’s good enough for Olympians, I guess it’s good enough for me too.

So before each trip, here’s what I imagine

o In each talk I’ll give, I imagine how my audience will receive God’s love. People will be spiritually nourished. People will experience God as never before. They’ll feel so blessed; they’ll tell their friends about the experience. (Hint for Speakers: This is what I imagine before I give any talk. I don’t go to the stage without doing this.)
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