From Transformers to Lone Survivor, actor, husband and father Mark Wahlberg looks for ways to incorporate his work ethic and values into the projects he is working on. A man of faith, Wahlberg is active with The Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women and Children and started his own foundation to help youth. We interviewed him in 2014 and talked about his parenting approach as well as why optimism and seizing the opportunities placed before him are important to him.
Wahlberg shares about how he and his wife raise their four kids including what they have found to be the most effective approach.
“The most effective thing is being engaged in every aspect of their life, but then also leading by example. It’s one thing to talk about it, but it’s another thing to do it. When my kids see me go to church every day, when they see me get on my hands and my knees…they [can see] and know how grateful I am and how appreciative I am. Plus they know how thoughtful and aware we are of what other people don’t have. Hopefully that will rub off on them. But sometimes you have to just get down to old-fashioned discipline too. It’s important to be involved and communicate with them and make sure they can trust you, and share with you, and rely on you. They need to count on you to be there.”
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.” Matthew 13:44-46
Wahlberg opens up on why optimism and seizing opportunities are important to him.
“It’s developed over time, and it continues to get stronger and stronger. Once in a while it’s tested. Obviously, we live in the real world and bad things happen. But I remember the overall theme – having a bigger picture [than just a singular viewpoint], and having my faith, deeply rooted in Catholicism and the Lord…I treasure any opportunity that I have ever had. I don’t take things for granted. I was given one opportunity to get into this business and I’ve been holding on to it ever since – cherishing it, and nurturing it. Don’t squander any kind of opportunity that comes your way.”
Be engaged. Whether it is with your children, friends, or co-workers, wherever you are be all there. It is too easy to get distracted by our phones or trying to multi-task. If you are worried about accomplishing a task and being engaged in the moment, ask God to help you focus on the moment and then multiply your time for the tasks that you need to get done. If you are having trouble prioritizing, ask a friend or mentor to weigh out the options with you. Sometimes, there are things on our to-do list that we can delegate or can wait for another day. Be willing to put down your device, turn off your favorite television show, and enjoy the relationships around you. Ask your family or friends what they would like to do and be present during that time.
Lead by example. Each of us have someone or a group of people that looks up to us daily. It could be our children, co-workers, classmates or teammates. Take time this week to think about the people that you have the potential to influence. Ask God to show you areas of your life that need to change to be more like Him and ask Him for strength to do it. Each of us is in the process of having our faith and our lives be refined. We don’t have to be perfect to lead others, just willing to change when God points out areas that need to be more like Christ. Pray for those that you lead and ask God to give you His words or message that He wants you to share with them. It could be a lesson from business or a challenge you overcame in your personal life. It could even be taking the group to a teambuilding activity.
Seize the opportunity. We are given opportunities daily. Some are to advance our career, others are to share Christ with a non-believer, and others we might never know the purpose. IN order for us to recognize and seize these opportunities, we must be walking in the power of the Holy Spirit. This is simply praying and ask God to guide and direct your decisions and actions through His Holy Spirit. Be willing to be obedient. The opportunity might not make sense at the time, but be open to what God is asking you to do. It might be sharing your testimony with a stranger at a coffee shop or doing an act of service for a neighbor. It might even be quitting your job when you don’t have another job lined up yet. Pray and ask God to show the opportunities around you and to help you to be obedient to His calling.
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