4:8 Principle called the secret to a joy-filled life - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

4:8 Principle called the secret to a joy-filled life

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The people who booked a cruise on the Triumph probably thought they were buying happiness. Boy, were they in for a letdown.

We go to the salon and buy makeup to improve our appearance. We go on diets to shape up and feel better. What if we could re-train our brains so we could lead a more joyful life?

A group of local men say it's happened for them and they want to share it.

They are men of diverse backgrounds and different faiths -- a judge, two lawyers, a nurse anesthetist, a military man, a preacher and a businessman. What they have in common is a little book with a big message: The 4:8 principle, The Secret to a Joy-filled life. 

They've read the book, studied and now want to share it with the community.

Said attorney Mark Judson, "It's a book that I had just finished reading and it really resonated with me. It had a big impact on my life. It affected my behavior and my wife and child said I was a lot less difficult to live with having read the book."

Retired nurse anesthetist Jim Landreneau is part of the group.

"We all experienced what kind of effect it had on us in our lives and we just felt like it was something we could share with other people," he said.

4:8 refers to a verse in the New Testament of the Bible and when followed, these men say it transforms lives. It has to do with focusing on what is good and refusing to let sad, discouraging thoughts and fears have power over your mind and your life. Attorney Lenn Knapp agrees it can make a difference.

"We are in control of our thoughts and we can have an impact on those around us and ourselves," Knapp said.

Businessman Tim Broussard said it has helped him.

"You have control over how you feel.  Nobody can make you upset or make you sad. You have the power in your own mind to think joyful thoughts," Broussard said.

Just as one might overcome bad habits such as smoking or eating junk food, so too say group  members, people can overcome negative thinking. Judge John Hood said it's about choosing how one reacts to negative stimuli.

"Negativity tends to attract people. And the common denominator is everybody's going to get more negative. You have to learn how to recognize that and to turn it," Hood said.

Group member David Landreneau is an analyst for the National Guard.

"We all have blessings whether you realize it or not and the more you dwell on these blessings and the goodness in the world, the more peace it brings to you," he said.

They've set up a study session for seven weeks and will bring in the nationally known author Tommy Newberry at the end. Rev. Chan Willis is the pastor at First Presbyterian of Lake Charles.

"This book is a practical application of a scriptural principle that is applicable in every aspect of our lives," Willis said.

If you're interested in joining a seven week enrichment study of the 4:8 principle -- call First Presbyterian Church in Lake Charles at 337-433-4667 or email secretary@1stpreslc.com Sessions are from 6 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. on Wednesdays starting next week. It's for men and women.

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