“Successful men make it their business to hold ideals of the conditions which they wish to realize. They constantly hold in mind the next step necessary to the ideal for which they are striving. Thoughts are the materials with which they build and the imagination is their mental workshop. Mind is the ever moving force with which they secure the persons and circumstances necessary to build their success structure and imagination is the matrix in which all great things are fashioned.” Charles Haanel  The Master Key 8:24

An interesting word ‘matrix’…I still haven’t really got my head round the films.

Nearly 30 years ago my wife, who had been barren 5 years after surgery, chemo and radiotherapy had just about won the battle with Hodgkin’s Disease. Miraculously she gave birth to our first daughter.  We had been told by all the experts that a child would never be possible and after 5 years we had come to believe it. Then one evening in a Wigan Hotel an after dinner speaker turned our beliefs and  our lives upside down, or maybe I should say the right way up. He was a carpet salesman from the other end of the country who knew nothing whatsoever about me or about Steppy’s medical history when he told us quite plainly that she would have a baby within a year.  I did not see anything funny about teasing a young woman on an issue that had caused her so much emotional distress and I was not very happy with the man. He stood his ground, was bold as a lion and insisted that ‘his Jesus’ could do anything and impossible was not a word in his vocabulary.

Well, John Bryant, as was his name, turned out to be correct, Deborah was born just nine months and a few days later by a caesarian section in Hope Hospital, Salford. A further 7 children came forth from that barren womb over the years but the reason for me telling the story here concerns the word matrix. Before Deborah was born we were convinced, mainly because of various prophecies that had been given to us, that she would be a boy. One such prophesy went along the lines of, “the man child that opens the matrix shall be called holy unto the Lord”

So Steppy really struggled and was convinced that they had mixed the babies up in the hospital. It was not that she was ungrateful but that she was so convinced it was to be a boy who we would dedicate to serve God. Then God actually spoke to me, which I found hard to believe back then but find easy to understand these days.

He said the promise was the man child that opens the matrix shall be called holy  to me. I said, Yes Lord but Deborah, for I had named her without even consulting Steppy, isn’t a man child. And the Lord said quite clearly, like another man speaking to his friend, no and she hasn’t opened the matrix either, the next one will and you will name him Joshua. I had never heard of the matrix, it was the word used for the womb in the King James Version of the Bible, written back in 1611. Pardon my ignorance. 18 months later Joshua was born, and despite all the protests of the doctors one of them was willing to go against the hospital policy and let her try for a normal birth.

The matrix is the secret place where life takes shape from a tiny seed. A place where what seems impossible comes into manifestation. Even where there have been no problems, behold the miracle of a human being coming into the world. A vehicle fashioned to carry an eternal spiritual being around for his sojourn on the earth. To think that the successful man, according to Haanel, builds his success structure with mere thoughts in the mental workshop which is the imagination, thoughts combined with faith and almost anything is possible for him. Think then of all the vast universe, the little blue plant less than a pinprick in its midst, the vast oceans and the mighty mountains on that little pinprick a home for the most wonderful of all creations, the man made in God’s image.

How can I be so sure…could it not have all been spontaneous…green slime and 460 million years and who can tell what might happen? What do you take me for? Only a fool would say in his heart there is no God.  All of this had to be conceived in a mental workshop with thoughts as building blocks and faith as mortar. Only God could do this and then give His man the ability to use the very same tools in his attempt to rule in the earth, have dominion over it, to tend and keep it according to the maker’s instructions.