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EBS96: From Whining To Refining

Eric Butterworth Speaks: Essays on Abundant Living #96

Delivered by Eric Butterworth on December 3, 1975

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Here’s a story that is old and well known. It is a story of a poor farmer who struggled for years to glean a livelihood out of his rocky soil and whined about the inadequacy of his means. Eventually he gave up in despair and went away to seek his fortune elsewhere. Years later he came back to his old farm and saw that it was swarming with machinery and that there was more wealth being dug out of it everyday than he ever dreamed existed. Where he had whined about the terrible, rocky soil he had tried to farm, now that same rocky soil was being refined into diamonds for this was the great Kemberly diamond field. I’ve always been impressed with that thought of refining instead of whining.

So often we are like that farmer in that we are beggars sitting on top of gold. We struggle with the raw material, and we whine about the limitations of life, while always in the refining process tremendous good can come from the situations right where we are. It has been said that the majority of failures in life are simply the victims of their mental defeats. Their conviction that they cannot succeed as others do robs them of their vigor and determination which self-confidence imparts. Thus, they don’t even to succeed. There is no philosophy by which a man can do a thing when he thinks he can’t do it.

The reason why millions of people plod along in mediocrity, many barely making a living when they have the ability to do infinitely bigger things, is because they lack confidence in themselves. They don’t believe they can do the bigger things that would lift them out of their rut of mediocrity and poverty; in other words, they are not winners mentally. The way always opens for the determined person, the one who refuses to whine and gets busy refining. It is a victorious mental attitude, a consciousness of power, the sense of mastership that always does the big things in the world.

If two persons with equal ability, one with a power of self-confidence and the other living with self-doubts, limitations and negations, are give similar tasks, there is no question, one will succeed and the other will fail. The self confidence of the one multiplies his powers a hundred fold, and the lack of it subtracts a hundred fold from the power of the other.

How much time do you spend in choosing which task you will perform, which way you will go, what you will do? Every day is a day of decision. We constantly stand at the crossroads in our business dealings, in our personal relationships, in our homes—there is always the necessity of choice. How important then that we have faith in ourselves and in the infinite intelligence that is within us. How important to know that we can determine whether to whine or to refine, whether to be conformed to this world as Paul says or to be transformed by the power of the mind. In this constantly changing world with its complex forces all about us, we sometimes cry out that we are driven by circumstances and that we have no choice. The fact remains that we always choose to do the things that we do; we always have a choice even though we may not wish to go a certain way;we allow ourselves to pursue it because it offers the path of least resistance. Sometimes the path of least resistance is the easiest to follow, and we are tempted to take it even when we know that it will probably bring future discomforts and complications.

Once we realize that the power to meet any emergency is nowhere else but within ourselves, once we stop looking for outside help, then intelligently we can let the divine part of ourself rule and exert the mastery that is ours to do. We find that we have infinitely creative resources; we find that when we center those resources on the one thing we want most, we can get anything from life that it has. The secret of power is understanding the divine source of creativity in our own mind. We must realize that the power to do anything, to have anything, to be anything is always within ourselves. Then and only then shall we take our proper place in the world.

As Bruce Barton put it in his delightful little book, The Man That Nobody Knows, “Somewhere at some unforgettable hour the daring filled Jesus’ heart, and he knew that he was bigger than Nazareth.” Again Barton says, “But to every person of vision the clear voice speaks. Nothing splendid has ever been achieved except by those who dared to believe that something inside them was superior to circumstances. In other words, when they stopped whining and started refining.

Concentrate all your thoughts on making your visions come true; thinking is the current that runs the dynamo of power. You connect this current with the divine part of your mind so that you can draw upon universal supply; you can actually become a superman. Do this, and you will be using the key to find the solution to every problem in life. How do you approach your work everyday? Do you grapple the tasks that come your way with a confident and easy mind, taking what it is that is available to you and refining it to bring forth tremendous demonstrations of your supply and success? Or do you start the day with a feeling of dread and distaste? Or do you whine that you are not equal to the effort demanded of you, that the job demands too much of you, too much of your time and energy and thought, whining, whining, whining? Why not start refining?

You probably have been told a million times that a great deal depends upon your attitude. We could put it in a very simplistic way by saying, “You can do anything you think you can do if you think hard enough that you can do it...if you stop whining and start refining.” Victory in anything comes first to the inner mind or consciousness, and success is expressed in the outer experience. One who is an inventor must know quite well before his invention takes form that first it is a possibility. If he keeps whining then there is no hope; if he spends his time refining, working, perspiring, then the chances are very likely that he will grew through the experience and come up with some new technique or through his efforts he makes it a reality or a material realization. It is because an inventor knows so well deep within himself that something can be done that keeps him keeping on in the refining process despite the occurence of failure after failure. He doesn’t whine, he refines. If he fails to bring forth the expected thing that he hoped to accomplish, it is only because he let his confidence waiver; he let outer circumstances, people, and things influence him instead of sticking with his own inner convictions.

So I always say, have the courage of your own convictions, follow through on that which you have been led to do. There is a way; you may have to work at it, you may have to perspire, but instead of whining, get busy refining—the potential is there. In other words, within you is the courage to let it flow through with actions if you get yourself in tune. That which you feel inside that you can do, or even that you would like to do, can be done because you wouldn’t wonder or hope or wish to do this thing unless it were a divine potentiality. Real deepseated desire is the forerunner of accomplishment, if the desire is coupled with faith and action. Never let discouragement get hold of you because it serves as iron bands clamping completely around you, and ever tightening with the passing of time until you just sit completely in bondage, whining, whining, whining. Throw off the bonds of discouragement, replace them with doors of opportunity that open to you through your own ideas, and let these ideas serve as channels from which unlimited riches flow forth to you in bounteous measure.

Your possibility of attainment depends only on your own vision. So, have a vision of what you want to do or be, and cling fast to it. The power for your accomplishment is right within you, and you can succeed if you stop whining and get busy refining. Remember, always there is no philosophy by which one can do that which he thinks he can’t do, but there is always the possibility that he can do anything if he thinks he can do it. Try setting desire, faith, determination, and action together, and see what happens. Refuse to be a victim of your own mental defeat. Refuse to get bowed down in the slough of dispondency; refuse to indulge in whining. Have the courage of your convictions, and get busy refining.

© 1975, by Eric Butterworth

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