Tag Archives: future

Orientation for a Secure Financial Future

Scanning the landscape of your financial future?

There are about six major ways to become wealthy:

  • Be Born into a Wealthy Family

    • It goes without saying that
      • if you are the child, relative, or heir of
        • Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Sam Walton, or
        • Africa’s Aliko Dangote, or Mexico’s Carlos Slim, or
        • any of the royal families in Kuwait, Oman, or Dubai, etc.
          • you WILL also be wealthy.
    • But this path to wealth is not available to over 99% of the planet!
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  • Marry into a Wealthy Family

    • Kate Middleton, and Meghan Markle
      • married into British Royalty and into Wealth!
    • The wives of Rupert Murdoch, Mark Zuckerberg, and Elon Musk
      • all married into wealth.
    • However, this road is reserved
      • for only a tiny sliver of humanity. 
      • It also appears that
        • the wealthy generally marry
          • people of similar economic status.
  • Win a Lottery Jackpot with a Big Cash Prize

    • The odds of winning the mega million jackpot in the US
      • for example, is over 1 in 300 million
      • that means it is ‘possible’ to lose over 300 million times
        • before you win once!
      • It also means that you may never win
        • if you play the lottery every day
          • of a 100-year life span
          • (that is about 36,600 days!)
          • and never win!
      • As a means to wealth,
        • winning the Jackpot is therefore a ‘false hope’
        • for the majority of us.
      • Note:  Forget about the publicity
        • around those who win;
        • the prize money
        • (less the portion
          • that goes to the organizers)
          • is coming from all those who did not win,
            • (that is a lot of people!)
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  • Steal Money From Plenty of People or From a Wealthy Person

    • The problem with this approach is that
      • it is illegal and you may get caught, 
      • it is anti-biblical, unethical, and immoral; moreover
      • people/the wealthy will work to protect their money, and
      • therefore the success rate of achieving lifetime wealth
        • through thievery is also very low.
    • Therefore, this is not a viable approach to wealth
      • for average person
      • (some still try to make a living
        • by scamming people out of their money).
  • Become a Successful Professional in a Well-paying Industry 

    • Note: “successful”
    • Also Note: “well paying industry” of the economy, meaning
      • star athletes, champion sportsmen, movie stars, etc.
        • at the top of their profession
        • (Usain Bolt
          • the 100 meter Jamaican world record holder
          • is reportedly worth over $30 million
            • in 2019!);
      • professions requiring high qualification, and
        • that are in high demand
        • but with low supply of workers, for example,
          • brain surgeons, computer whiz, fund managers, etc.
    • Also Note: Working for income in an excellent but regular job
        • is not usually a means to wealth!!
    • The possibilities here in my judgment are greater
      • than the previous listings
      • but still for most people
      • it is not a feasible way to build lifetime wealth.
  • Start and Run Your Own Successful Business 

    • Note again “successful”
    • Starting and running a business requires
      • special skills
        • which many people do not appear to have;
      • willingness to take risks,
      • willingness to bear full responsibility
        • for your own welfare.
      • But with risks comes financial reward
        • that can grow without limit
          • into lifetime wealth,
          • as long as the business continues to grow
            • and is successful.
    • The proportion of people who can take this is also greater 
      • than than the previous options!
  • Get A regular career and invest wisely

    • in other Successful Businesses
      • over a long period of time!
    • Note: you do not have to be successful at
      • starting and running a business; but
        • you must be good at picking successful businesses
          • over a long period of time!
    • This means using modest regular income, and
      • saving all you can, while
      • investing in businesses that are successful,
      • over a long period of time,
        • will generally compound into wealth!
    • This is the most available route for most people!
      • More next time.

On a final note:

  • Becoming ‘wealthy’ need not be your goal, rather
  • Make it your goal to become Financially Free:
    • Have enough to tithe and give to the work of the Lord.
    • Have enough to cover your budgeted expense
      • including miscellaneous, as well as
      • unplanned and unexpected expenses.
    • Have enough to cover for emergencies.
    • Save enough to guarantee a desired standard of living in retirement.
    • Have enough to leave a legacy for the next generation!
    • Have enough to be generous and make a difference in the lives of others.
  • This we can all do
    • If we start early,
    • with much planning, prayer, and discipline!!

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New Year! What Resolutions?!

I NO LONGER MAKE NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS!!

WHY?  Two things!

  • I have come to view the end of one year and the start of another as 
    • a little too artificial.
    • Imagine looking back to the earth
      • from the vantage point of the moon.
      • What is the difference between
        • December 31st and
        • January 1st?
    • Or Imagine being a bird, or another animal.
      • What is the difference in the experience
      • of December 31st relative to January 1st?
  • I have resolutions,
    • but they are no longer bound by an artificial timeline.
    • My resolutions
      • like time itself,
      • are always on a continuum; and they
      • are about
        • ‘always growing’;
        • always becoming a better version of me.
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    •  I don’t stop striving to become better version of me
      • just because I broke a resolution after two months.
    • Neither do I wait until the next December 31st
      • to resolve to start again;
      • to become a better version of me;
        • after I fail by February 1st each year.

So what should we do on the 31st of December each year?

  • Do celebrate 
    • the end of a block of (man made) ‘time’ and the start of a new one,
      • like everybody else; and
      • it is useful to have time markers along the way, but
  • Do, never become obsessive
    • that you must meet all your benchmarks within the year
      • to consider yourself successful!

So here is the ONE AND ONLY RESOLUTION you need to have:

  • Always strive to become a better version of yourself with each passing day:
    • Be better at your faith, you know,
      • trust, pray, love, give, testify, know, and serve more, etc.,
        • about and as a result of your faith!
    • Better in your character
      • (the real you;
      • what’s inside;
      • like toothpaste,
        • what comes out when pressure is applied);
      • Be more dependable, more patient, more truthful,
      • more balanced, less self-centered, more at peace with yourself,
      • more generous with others,
        • with your resources as well as with their faults etc.,
      • more self disciplined with time, words, and actions; wiser.
  •  Better in your relationships: more
      • serving, self-less, open, forgiving, listening and less talking,
      • considerate, gentle, humble, and more self-control.
    • Better at your Career:  Make it your goal to be 
      • more dependable, knowledgeable, skillful, useful, available, etc.
        • with each passing day.

A wise man once said, long ago:

“…One thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize…” Paul (ca. AD 52-62, Phil 3.13-14)

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!  PLEASE LIKE AND SHARE!!

The Truth is Staring at Us in the Face!

“…and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
John 8.32- ESV – Jesus

The Truth/Facts about @realDonaldTrump and where he is taking America

  • are clear but the implications are
    • so great, so dangerous, and so catastrophic,
      • that most of us (including a good number of his followers)
        • simply do not want to confront or accept it.

WHAT IS THE TRUTH???!!!!

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  • TRUTH/FACT: Donald Trump is a deeply flawed man.

    • He is a pathological liar 
      • He lies incessantly, impulsively and
        • in all things small and great.
    • He is a narcissist
      • (i.e. extremely self-centered, and selfish)
      • far more than the usual politician.
    • He is mean
      • He attacks and seeks to hurt people personally
        • and not always because he is ‘fighting back’,
        • he often responds to disagreements
          • with personal attacks.
    • He is amoral
      • He appears to have no sense or commitment
        • to the difference between right and wrong.
      • He will attack other people of wrongdoing
        • that he himself is guilty of
          • without the slightest hint of self-awareness.
      • All his choices and actions boil down to
        • what is best for him:
          • not his wife, not his children, not the Republican party, not his team, not his staff, not his (now ‘close’) friends, not America’s allies, not America’s interests,
          • just what is best for him in the moment!!!!
    • He appears to lack empathy
      • He is not (easily?) moved
        • by the feelings and experiences of others.
    • He appears unwilling to personally exert himself
      • (when he is not speaking before adoring crowds).
      • He is not a student of history.
      • He spends a lot of time watching TV.
      • He has a significant amount of ‘executive time’ each day.
      • He spends a lot of time golfing.
    • He is impulsive
      • He often acts without forethought and deliberation.
    • He may not always be tethered to reality
      • He appears to believe some of his own lies.
      • He refuses to believe facts contrary to his own narrative/interpretation.
  • The TRUTH:  Donald Trump is not going to and will not change

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  • There will be no ‘pivot’
    • to a nicer or another version
      • of @realDonaldTrump
    • He has not ‘lied’ to us about who he is
      • Old clips of his younger days show that
        • he has always thought he has the answer to every problem, and
        • he must always have the last word.
    • “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time [Maya Angelou]
  • Truth/Fact: Every Tree Bears Fruit that is natural to it!

“Beware of the false prophets, [teachers] who come to you dressed as sheep [appearing gentle and innocent], but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 By their fruit you will recognize them [that is, by their contrived doctrine (i.e. teaching) and self-focus]. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the unhealthy tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore, by their fruit you will recognize them [as false prophets]. [Matthew 7.15-20 AMP: Jesus]

  • TRUTH/FACT:  THE UNITED STATES AND THE WORLD ARE THEREFORE NOT IN GOOD HANDS!!!

    • The US and the world economy are not in good hands
      • Exhibits:
        • Trade wars without appropriate forethought and planning:
          • “trade wars are easy to win” – Donald Trump
        • Lack of preparation for the looming downturn in the economy
        • Monetary policy by tweets, personal attacks, and ‘gut’ feeling.
          •  “They’re making a mistake because I have a gut, and my gut tells me more sometimes than anybody else’s brain can ever tell me.” Donald Trump (November 2018)
        • Stock Market volatility week of August 19-23, 2019
    • International Peace and Stability are not in good hands.
      • Exhibits:
        • Trump conducts extremely crucial geopolitical relationships
          • on the basis of his personal ‘interactions’ (relationship?)
            • with adversaries and allies:
              • Vladimir Putin, Kim Jung Un, Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron, Justin Trudeau etc.
        • North Korea is still firing missiles off
        • Russia and the US are entering a new nuclear arms race
        • Trump has dictatorial tendencies
          • he appears to want to skip the ‘rule of law’  if  he can:
            • “Our great American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing your companies HOME and making your products in the USA.” Donald Trump 08/23/2019
    • America as a Beacon of Light (‘the city on a hill‘) is not in good hands
      • When an organization/country changes its values,
        • does it continue to be the same organization/country?
      •  Exhibit
        • Will Trump willingly leave office or be forced out if/when he looses in 2020?
          • Will he sow discord in society to avoid accepting defeat?
        • Will America welcome fleeing refugees anymore?
          • “Give me your tired, your poor,
            Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
            …Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
            I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
            [Statue of Liberty Poem]
        • Will the rights of a free press continue unchallenged
          • in the era of so called ‘fake news’ claims?
        • Will the body politic aspire towards a national, political, economic, and Judeo-Christian ethos characterized by
          • individual freedoms, integrity in public office, rule of law, ‘United’ States, fully representative democracy, or will it
          • devolve into moral relativism, factionalism, regionalism, and division?

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  • We are in for a rough ride
    • Exhibits
      • Walking in on young pageant contestants in their dressing rooms; “Grab them [women] by their ….”:
        • More corruption of morals by a sitting President
      • Trump University scandal and subsequent court settlement:
        • More Deceit, more corruption
      • 4 (5?) Bankruptcies:
        • Wreck the American Economy
      • Thousands of Lawsuits:
        • Tying up the American system of checks and balances in knots
          • with fights between the different branches of government, i.e.
            • the courts, congress, and the executive branch.
      • Two divorces, plus cheating on spouses:
        • Broken promises to the people of America
      • Paying off Stormy Daniels and other Scandals in order to win:
        • More corruption of the American Democracy like you have never seen before.
    • All powerful, corrupt and (perhaps evil) political leaders 
      • have periods of ‘good results’ 
        • when the majority of people appear to love them,
        • when it seems they had success after success,
        • when it seems they survived again and again,
          • going from one potential disaster to another,  that is,
        • until their eventual and certain downfall. 

WE ARE IN FOR A ROUGH RIDE FOLKS!!!!

BRACE FOR IMPACT!!!

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How Do You Know He/She is the One!

Seriously,

  • How do you know he/she is the One

  • with whom you can have
    • a long lasting, mutually fulfilling, and happy relationship?

Physical Attraction:  What you ‘see’ in the other person says

  • ‘Go ahead, he/she is the one!’
  • This means that their
    • looks, fashion sense,
    • body type, posture and manner of walking
      • showing self- confidence, humility, focus, …;
    • attitude and presence,
    • voice and manner of speaking, etc.,
      • will meet your individual threshold/preference
        • for physical attraction,
        • throughout the relationship.
  • Ignoring this is why I believe that
    • (the TV show)
    • ‘Married at First Sight’ does not appear to work well
      • especially without the necessary cultural history and
      • without a network of supportive and influential family dynamics
        • to support it.
  • Western Culture emphasize/glamorize this far too much
    • when there other equally
      • or more important factors
        • to consider.

Shared Core Values and Approach to Life

  • You observe that you share similar views about
  • the most basic things you believe about life:
    • God, faith, and prayers,
    • money, life and death, family,
    • friends, science, the law, culture,
  • all say ‘Go ahead, he/she is the one!’

BEHIND THE SCENES‘ Real Life Experience(s) say,

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com
  • ‘Yes, Go ahead, he/she is the one!’
  • ‘Behind the scenes’ experience concerning
    • earning and spending money,
    • interactions with siblings, parents, relatives,
    • co-workers, bosses, detractors and opponents,
      • (how he/she treats them is how he/she will treat you eventually);
    • leisure and entertainment activities,
    • loss, illness, heartaches, and outstanding joys,
      • all say ‘Go ahead’, he/she is the one!
  • However remember
    • people can and do change.

Sound Logic and Reasoning Confirms it!

  • Please see my last post
  • Use Your head to guard your heart
  • Your heart can guide you
    • but not against objective facts and logic.
  • Remember, you are committing yourself to
    • seek that person’s happiness without precondition
      • in the hope that they will do the same for you.
  • Warren Buffet: 
    • “Buy a stock the way you would buy a house. Understand and like it such that you’d be content to own it in the absence of any market.”
    • Me :  “Enter a long term relationship the way you would buy a house. Understand and like it such that you’d be content to own it in the absence of making any profit off it.”
  • Why have a brain if you do not use it to make important decisions in life?
  • If sound logic and reasoning say “Go ahead, he/she is the one” then
    • do it, He/She is the one.

What about ‘chemistry,’ ‘instinct,’ ‘live in the moment’ or ‘take a risk’?

  • Chemistry‘ is mutual physical attraction and a shared approach to life,
    • (see above), unfortunately,
    • will not be enough for the long haul.
  • ‘Instinct’?
    • You would not invest in the stock market solely by instinct;
      • you need additional information to inform your ‘instinct’;
      • why then would you invest your life based solely on instinct?
  • ‘Live in the moment’?
    • Only if you have only one moment to live.
  • Take a risk?’
    • Would you jump out of an airplane
      • without a parachute and/or
      • without being reasonably sure it works?

We can do this; Let’s do this!!

Note:  I apologies for the gap between the last post and this, Apologies for the gap between the last  post and this.  My excuse? Life Happened (Work, car crashes in the family, etc.).  Email me your questions at reach4himwdray@gmail.com

The Minimum Monthly Payment Trap!!

As a general principle, debt is bad unless

  • It’s an investment debt, examples of which are,
    • education loans in an area and, in an amount that makes economic sense
    • a mortgage,
      • a loan to purchase a house or real estate,
        • for which at least you have a real asset to sell off later,
        • it can be viewed as a form of saving at the least;
        • you may be able to build equity over time, and thereby
        • to increase your net assets position; or
    • an asset that will produce returns
      • greater than the cost of servicing the debt,
        • i.e. your earnings on the asset is greater than interest paid on it;
      • for example, a business or some form of an investment instrument
        • that produces an additional and an ongoing stream of income.

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Long Term Loans,

  • credit cards, education loans, business loans, mortgage loans etc.
  • even for ‘good investment loans’ (debt) have one trap:
    • the ‘Minimum Monthly Payments’ trap.
  • ‘Minimum Monthly Payment,’
    • is the amount you are required to pay on your outstanding balance
      • at regular periods (usually monthly, but also quarterly, yearly, etc.)
      • over the life of the loan;
      • meant to at least cover the interest on the loan.
    • But it may not cover your total monthly interest,
      • which means the amount you owe could be increasing
        • even while you are making regular payments!
  • When you take out a loan, your loan balance
    • which is your total debt on the loan,
    • continues to earn interest,
      • by the day, month, etc. depending on the loan details; it may also
    • increase when you fail to make a payment
      • because you get charged a penalty for late or non-payment,
        • which is then added to your loan balance!

 If your minimum payments do not cover the interest,

    • in each period,
    • the unpaid interest is usually added to your outstanding balance
      • (this is called ‘capitalization’ of the interest)
      • that is, it’s like you took a larger loan in the first place;
    • future interest payments may be calculated on
      • the unpaid interest plus the original balance (‘principal’);
      • which is now the new and higher ‘principal’,
      • therefore your debt is growing, even as you are making
        • regular payments towards it!
  • Example, say you hold a balance of $25,000 on a credit card/loan
    • at 15% annual interest rate computed on each month’s balance, you must pay
      • $3750 per year in interest (25,000 x 0.15) or
      • $308 – $312 per month (3750 /365 * 30 days; or $3750 /12 months) or
      • $500 per month if the minimum payment required is 2%
        • ($25,000 * 0.15)
    • If you miss one minimum payment,
      • the $500 may be added to your balance of $25,000
        • at the end of the period
        • to become $25,500.
        • Your annual interest at 15% is now
          • $3825 per year (25,500 * 0.15) or
          • $314 – $318 per month (3825 /365 * 30 days; or $3825/12 months) or
          • $510 per month if the minimum payment required is 2%
      • Additional fees (penalties) may also be added to your loan balance.
    • If on the other hand
      • you are in financial difficulty and ask for reduced payment
        • that is less than your interest payments,
          • say you want to make a $100 payment,
          • instead of the minimum payment of $500
        • you will be paying less than the interest payment
          • (of $308 – $312 per month);
        • your outstanding interest may be capitalized
          • i.e. added to the initial balance of $25,000:
          • which is $208 – $212: the difference
            • between your monthly interest
              • ($308 – $312) and
              • the $100 you paid
          • will be added to your balance;
          • other ‘late penalty’ or ‘non-payment’ fees
            • may also be added to your balance
          • other ‘finance’ or ‘financing’ charges
            • may be added to your balance and
          • the total loan balance will increase.
        • Then what looks like a relief (less than the minimum payment)
          • turns out to be bad for you in the long run

There’s more. Check back tomorrow!

Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and (soon) on YouTube;

Email me at reach4himwdray@gmail.com

Believe! – 2

Some Basic Truths For Meaningful, Happy and Successful Life

Believe that:

  • There is a God Almighty

    • He is
    • He sees
    • He knows
    • He loves
    • He will judge
    • He is sovereign
      • (owes no one any explanation, and is
      • free to do whatever he wills,
        • with his creation)
    • He is Holy but he is also merciful
  • You are Special

    • One of a kind
    • In a good way, despite or because of
      • what you did in the past
      • what someone did to you in the past
      • your DNA profile
      • where you were born
    • You have something to say, to give, to contribute, to do
      • in this world;
      • a legacy to leave behind,
      • a mission to accomplish, and
      • a dream to fulfill.
      • Your life has meaning!
    • You are of infinite value
      • to God who loves you and died for you
        • on a cross!
      • to those who love you
        • mom, dad, grandpa, grandma, siblings, bff etc.
        • You add meaning, joy and happiness to their lives.
        • For those who may not ‘love’ you,
          • They are not looking at your true value.
          • They are looking at something other than
            • who you really are!
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  • Things can and Do Change

    • Other opportunities will open
      • Closed doors may become open
      • New doors will open up
      • ‘Doors’ can become walls or
      • ladders may be provided to scale walls!
    • People can change
      • Friends can become enemies
        • and vice versa.
      • Bosses can become subordinates
        • and vice versa.
      • Doubts can become trust
        • and vice versa.
      • Opponents can become team-mates
        • and vice versa.
    • Miracles (impossible ‘coincidences’) can happen
    • New methods, medications, procedures, approaches will be invented
      • making it easier to get where you want to go in your life!
  • Reality, Facts, and Truth Rule in the Long Run

    • There are no ‘alternative facts’
    • Opinions, feelings, emotions, loyalties change, facts don’t
    • Evidence based choices are best
    • Respect True Scientific Discoveries
      • God is the ultimate scientist
      • They are foundation to practically all human achievements 

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  • The Other Side of Life Will Be Different

    • All tears will be wiped away;
    • No more sorrows, sickness, death, or evil,
    • No more scammers, swindlers, thieves, liars, sociopaths;
      • Those who (we) think they ‘got away with it’
        • will not escape the ultimate justice,
          • guaranteed by God!
    • If you have invested in it!
      • I recommend Jesus to you, Personally!
    • Don’t think there will be need for ‘Faith’
      • Faith will become sight
      • It will be like the Garden of Eden all over again!

Follow Reach Ministries on Twitter and Facebook;  Contact:  reach4himwdray@gmail.com

YOU CAN DO THIS, LET’S DO THIS!

 

Life After Defeat?… Yes! (2)

In order to have a meaningful and successful Life after Defeat, Step 1 is to separate Who YOU ARE from WHAT HAPPENED (the event).  Now the next steps:

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Photo by Simon Migaj on Pexels.com
  • Take Time to Reflect
    • Avoid far reaching decisions while you are ‘feeling blue.’
      • Choices under such conditions are likely to be
        • emotion driven,
        • ill advised, and
        • wrong.
    • Learn from the experience.
      • Who to trust
      • What to do
      • A better way
  • Keep Things in Perspective
    • The Time Perspective
      • There may be other opportunities.
      • Take the long view.
        • How will this look one, two, five, or ten years from now?
        • How will this look from the other side of eternity?
      • You may have gone through this in the past,
        • remember how you made it through then?
          • You can do it again!
    • The ‘Others’ Perspective
      • In the past your ‘win’ meant others lost!
      • Your experience may not be the best,
        • but it is not the worst either.
      • Others have survived such things
        • so can you!
    • The ‘God’ Perspective
      • He lives, he sees, he knows, he understands, and
        • he loves YOU!
      • He is in control
      • He does not make mistakes
      • All Things Are Possible with him
  • Consider Alternatives
    • Do it again!
      • Success sometimes (often) comes only after several tries
      • ‘Third time is the charm’
      • Believe!
    • Adjust Your Line of Attack (approach)
      • More and better preparation
      • Note the ‘signs’ along the way and make adjustments
    • Change Direction
      • You may not be a fighter pilot but
        • you will be able to design the planes they fly in
      • You may not qualify or be approved to be a doctor
        • but you will be an excellent nurse practitioner or
        • a medical technician, or a surgical nurse, etc.
      • You may not qualify to become an engineer
        • but you will be an excellent and successful mechanic!
      • You get the idea!

You can Do this – Let’s Do this!

Contact:  reach4himwdray@gmail.com