The Things You Can Do at 62. (Or Thereabouts)

Well at last I have decided to get on with writing the book and what you see above is the title, (at least the working title)  I wrote the first chapter a year ago but floundered as life got in the way. That’s just the way things happen isn’t it, we must fight back against the difficulties and, press on towards the goal. Most of the content will be found in previous posts on this blog because after all it is only my thinking written down, I cant change my beliefs and ideas just to write a book or we would have to call it a novel. I will be rewriting every word though. No copy and pasting. New thoughts applied to existing ideas.  Things have happened recently to make me feel so inspired to organise my most important thoughts and publish them in printed book form.  Most of those things I would never have dreamed I could do at 62.  Now though, I don’t care if you are 82, I believe there is still an adventure waiting for you.

I have never written a book before and the idea was daunting at first, although I write sermons regularly and have preached them around the world, and I have been writing this blog for a few years;  so what’s to stop me writing a full blown book. Even if no-one else reads it I will enjoy counting my blessings and recording some of the things I have learned. 

I never believed I could write well enough or have something to write that would be of interest to the public and yet I have had loads of people telling me how they enjoyed and have benefited from some of my written thoughts.  I guess we all have an audience somewhere. But until now writing has been something that happens in the secret place of my home office.  I write it, I publish it online and if the odd person reads it well thats OK and if people want to debate me on it, well I guess I can handle that too. Its all on line, it is easy to be brave from behind a keyboard: you only have to read some of the comments on social media to work that out. That’s not for me, I will never pull anyone down online and I am not going to fight for long with those that do either, although I did sometimes try to reason with them for a while. I gave up eventually, deciding that they actually want to hate, they want to criticise and they are not going to learn anything from me no matter how hard I try.

Anyway that was the extent of my public communications (apart from the fact that some of my sermons are recorded and have been published on various websites and podcasts) until late last year when I was invited to be a guest on a talk radio show.  I said yes quite gingerly but was wondering what I had done until the big day. What would I say? Why would anyone want to listen to me? But the host was convinced I could add something to his show so along I went to Blackpool and entered a radio studio for the first time in my life.

It was actually quite exciting and an enjoyable experience. Driving home I was just thinking about how glad I was that I had done it and that it would now be confined to my personal history when the phone rang.

“This is Matthew Branson, I am the founder and owner of Cornerstone Christian Radio, the radio station you were just on. I heard your interview and you have a great voice for radio, would you like to talk about having a show of your own? ‘Gobsmacked’  is a common phrase where we live, too common my wife says, but what better way to say it. “It won’t be till the new year, we are building a new studio which will be better equipped and totally dedicated to the purpose but I would like you to do a show, maybe once a week.” I was totally inexperienced, it would take me a while just to grasp the technology let alone get together the music and some idea of what to say for two hours. Four months later after doing a two hour show every week I was asked to do a morning show Monday to Friday to set people up for the day. It started at 7:30 and ended at 9:00AM.   Although our target audience is the North West of England I am amazed to find I have listeners from many parts of the world including India and Pakistan, Uganda, South Africa and lots more. I suppose the facebook live talks I give before my shows has widened the audience but it is still very pleasing. How far will this go? I don’t know. All I know is I am doing something that I never could have imagined, I have a big vision and goals to grow and help others grow at the time of life I thought I would be winding down. Hence the title ‘The Things you can do at 62’.

The kind of success we have in mind cannot be achieved without help so we have partnered with one of the worlds largest online shopping companies who sell a good range of healthy, and environmentally friendly products similar to what we all use in our own homes. Listeners can make a contribution to Cornerstone easily and simply by ordering some of the things they would normally buy from the supermarkets each month from our partner company.  When we introduced them as customers the company pay the station a small commission every time they order. And everyone wins because members get discounts and other benefits when they place their monthly order online. What a great way for our listeners to contribute to the station without spending any more money that they currently do and they should see long term improvements in their families health too because every product contains only natural ingredients.  

You may be asking what’s that got to do with how far this thing can go? 

All the presenters are volunteers and also work at full time jobs and that’s the way it will be for the foreseeable future. Thats’s OK by us, but it means the station struggles to generate cash to meet the studio’s ongoing running costs.  We have ambitions of getting a DAB licence in the near future which will greatly enlarge our reach. Cornerstone Christian Radio is a ministry and already well over 80,000 listeners have enjoyed the great variety of music and particularly the banter of the live shows. This has all been done on a shoestring budget with the generosity of Matthew and his wife Andrea Branson who works full time to make it all possible.  With every new long term customer we introduce to Melaleuca we move a step nearer to meeting those goals. For information of how you can help and for answers to all your questions. email me at   

My own show is called the Personal Growth Program and is not aimed solely at Christians.  As a local pastor I see the whole community as my flock, even if some of them don’t want to know about spiritual things right now there is no reason I can’t help them lead better lives: so we  are doing what we can to help people grow in every way. That includes businesses and personal careers, personal confidence, family, relationships, health, education and obviously the most important thing to us is the spiritual growth of our listeners. 

A good example can be taken from this mornings Personal Growth Show. (Obviously it may not be this morning’s show at the time you are reading it but it was on the day I wrote it.)  I played a recording from Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich. Napoleon himself was speaking on one of his own radio broadcasts from more that 50 years ago. He said everyone wants to get rich but most people have no idea of what riches really mean. They have the idea that riches can only be represented by what money will buy. This is very far from the truth and Napoleon then went on to outline the twelve areas of true riches.  Financial security was definitely among them but down at number twelve. The full list is below.  We will be covering all of them in greater depth on forthcoming shows. 

Hopefully the Personal Growth Program from 7:30 – 8:30 on CornerstoneChristianRadio.comis entertaining, and fun and a great way to wake up in the morning and I already know that some people think it’s good company too, which is lovely.  The purpose is to improve the circumstances of as many people as we can, in every way we can.  

Hear is Napoleon Hill’s list. We will be expanding on each heading over the coming weeks.

A Positive Mental Attitude

Sound Physical Health

Harmony in Human Relations

Freedom from Fear

Hope for Future Achievement 

Applied Faith

Willingness to Share Our Blessings with Others

To be Engaged in a Labour of Love

Open Minded on all Subjects with all People.

Complete Self-Discipline 

Financial Security.

For now, please note that everything begins with a Positive Mental Attitude and whilst Financial Security is vital and should be attainable by everyone it comes at the end of the list. A positive mental attitude helps you make the start, keeps you going when things get tough and sees you complete the journey. Virtually every victory in your life started with the courage to face defeat, every ‘YES’ you ever heard in business started with the courage to hear ‘NO’. Let’s grow together.

Have a great day.

Is this ‘One Thing’ holding you back too?

Do you have Goals and Aspirations as yet unfulfilled? Have your dreams grown dim…and do the desires of your heart seem further away than ever? Lets get the defibrillator out. Maybe we can give them a  jump start. Let’s get them dreams off the back burner and get the full flame of Faith back under them again.

This morning I woke up thinking about a lady from a church I used to attend.

For 17 years Joyce and I worked closely together before God moved our family to pastures new. We have been at the church where my wife and I are Pastors now for over 14 years. I feel it is important to say, if we are to be successful we must stick with things for longer than many people tend to do. It seems easy to throw things away and start again but it will always leave a scar if the time or the reason to move on was not right. That’s why I said God moved our family and I know that although we had some really tough times at first we were able to stand firm because we knew we were doing what our God wanted us to do.

Anyway, back to Joyce. That lady lived a triumphant life of Faith until she passed on February 19th 2018.  I was privileged to say a few words at her leaving do. (read funeral if you like) and although the coffin was right in front of me as I spoke I knew it was just a box, with an empty shell of a body inside it.  Joyce was not there, she was with her husband Ted, and the saviour she had loved every day of her life. She had been a great success: like all of us, she had her ups and downs, but the testimonies from all over that very full church building told me that during her 88 year sojourn on planet earth the impression she made will last for a very long time.

She did what she was called to do, she was like a ‘mother’ to multitudes.

It may seem like a tentative link but my mind made the leap, and success in any field is still success, so I think there is something else I need to share from my first thoughts this morning?

I have had the DESIRE to build a successful Consumer Direct Marketing Business for many years now. I have done OK part time for the last 14 years but with everything else going on in my life (I admit that’s an excuse) I have never taken it to the next level.  My goal is to achieve sufficient monthly residual income to provide for my family, free up more time for my pastoral ministry and also to help with funding various other ministries that are important to my wife and me.

OK, I have done reasonably well, but not so well that it will make a difference when I am lying in my own wooden box. I have done many things well but why I have not broken through in this one thing continues to baffle me. I could fake it now and tell you how fantastic I am doing and how swimmingly it’s going but that is not why I am here. I have to be honest with you if you are taking your valuable time to read my writing. I appreciate you and I want us to grow together. I do some things very well but in other areas I need to learn and grow. I suppose we all do and I know I always will.

So I asked myself this question, is it my DESIRE or my FAITH that needs to be increased? Do I not want it badly enough or are there little foxes of doubt that are spoiling the vine and holding me back? (ref. Song of Solomon 2:15)

Well I certainly have FAITH in GOD: above all things I know that my God will supply all of my needs according to his riches in Heaven. I believed Jesus when He said He would never leave me or forsake me. So there is no problem there.

I have Faith in the Physical Laws of the universe. I know that that sun will rise tomorrow morning and that if I let go of the object in my hand gravity will always take it the same way. I know that I will reap what I sow, every time. I have never doubted those principles.

I have faith in my wife. I never doubt her love and her desire for the best in my life and the lives of our children.

I trust the integrity of the company with which I have partnered, and I know they do their best to produce the highest quality goods they can at affordable prices: and they always pay me what I deserve and always on time. They have their faults like every company but they do try to fix them quickly when they come to light. I have no doubts there.

I have faith in the marketing system which many companies use to distribute their goods efficiently. I believe it is the best way to get goods or services to the end consumer saving time and cutting the costs of middle men. It is also one of very few ways that an ordinary family like mine can start a small business of their own with very little outlay and whose earnings are only limited by their willingness to work.

I have the same NO LIMIT opportunity as everyone else, I produce better results than many and yet I have to admit I am not fulfilling my potential in this area.

So why not? Where is the disconnect in my Faith?

Thinking about Joyce and all she achieved, and about all that there is still for me to do, I had a revelation.
The problem is that I still lack Faith in me.

And my thoughts went to many of the people I know and I thought ‘the problem is the same for them too’…we can all believe for great things for other people, but we struggle to believe for ourselves. As an example just a few days ago we were asked to pray for a 4 year old boy in hospital with meningitis. His parents had been told by the doctors to prepare for the worst and it was suggested we pray for them to be comforted. I would not ask God to do that.  I had not one ounce of doubt in my mind that the child would be healed. I was not a bit surprised when the good news of his recovery came through a few days later. I have seen it before with the same evil bug and I know nothing is beyond my God’s power to heal… or His desire to heal.

This morning I was saying ‘God, thank you for the miracle’…it was then that I got the revelation

How I talk to God about others, how I pray for others is different from how I talk to Him about myself. Somehow I feel they deserve the miracle but perhaps I don’t.  It was immediately clear that my daily self-talk must change (and yes, I am also talking to you, dear reader) and so must my daily activities.

I have Faith in God, and He has faith in me… but I must agree with Him and have faith in me too. So I am not changing the massive goals I have set for myself, but I am taking a step back to focus on the next simple step that will get me back on the road to that goal.

My Faith has increased even as I have been writing this simple declaration:

So NOW I commit to doing the small, simple action steps that will ultimately get me to my desired result. What is the one thing that will make a difference, can I put everything else aside until that one thing is accomplished before I move on to the next ‘One Thing’?  I know what my ‘One Thing’ is and I am starting right now, even as this message is uploading.

Will you ask yourself this question, if you have the DESIRE, and you have the FAITH, and yet it is still not happening… “What is the one thing that I must do right now and for as long as it takes, to get back on the right track.”

Now don’t take it that I mean you can’t eat or sleep or speak to your partner or your kids till its done. But if you decide a television program or some other unprofitable activity is more important, if you would rather do something that will take you further away from your goal when you should be moving towards it: then who do you think you are fooling? I know what it’s like, we have all done it. But lets stop it. Let’s commit to fixing it.…Right NOW.

Lets finish with the master teacher, Jesus, who tells a parable in Matthew 13:31…

“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his
field. Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows, it is that largest
of garden plants and becomes a tree…”

Do you have faith right now that is the size of a tree? Probably not!
Neither do I, but I bet we both have faith the size of a mustard seed.
Make the commitment to yourself, to your family, to those you care about.
Believe you are worth it, believe you can and just make the start.