My life as I follow Jesus Christ, and live life as a husband, father, friend, pastor, runner, coach, and sinner who found forgiveness and favor with God.

Friday, January 22, 2010

2010 = Dream Year

I've been fortunate enough to be accepted into Dream Year.  A chance to really pursue & investigate what could be.  The following is from my DY Coach, who explained what DY10 is all about:

Dream Year is a 12-month process that's designed to help you bring your God-given dream to life.
You bring the dream.
I'll be your dream coach.
As a community of just 20 participants..
We'll make it happen.

While you go about executing your project, we'll walk through a 12-month curriculum that looks something like this...

January - Authenticating your dream (tracing its history, assessing your readiness, testing the idea, defining a clear project, raising your faith level, preparing for risk)

February - Building your platform (moving from beggar to influencer, finding your audience, trading value for information, becoming an expert in your field)

March - Defining your values (determining what you won't do, then determining what you will do, on the subject of excellence, building a team to bring your idea to life)

April - Funding your dream (great ideas are spreadsheets with skin on, identifying revenue sources, shaping your strategy, cash flow is everything, the art of making the ask)

May - Branding your project (developing a total user experience, a field guide to designers, developing a creative class around you, design as the foundation for what you do)

June - Creating milestones (working backward from the goal, productivity tools, the sacrificial substitution principle, how faith changes the order of action, )

July - Leveraging influence (if you don't have influence you borrow it, if you already have influence you still borrow it, creating social movements around your idea, networking with leaders who matter)

August - Partnerships (creating win-wins, the art of negotiation, rooting out great partnerships, angles of benefit, value exchanges, approaching partners)

September - Rainmaking (sales for people who hate sales, how to put yourself out there without losing dignity, systems that produce revenue, closing deals, invoicing, merchant gateways)

October - Shaping an organization (organizational systems, proprietary versus outsourced, contractors versus employees, legal issues, how to make your idea your living, etc.)

November - Positioning yourself (navigating the world of media, agents, publishers, and conference makers, marketing in an over-saturated field, differentiation)

December - Last-month epiphanies, unresolved issues, feedback and last minute-ideas, charting the future connectivity of the class of 2010

There will be monthly assignments that will help you work toward your dream. But you'll benefit from the influence, connections, resources, talents, and ideas of all of the participants. Each year will produce its own class of graduates... a fraternity if you will. A skull and bones of the Christian world.

I'm so thankful that I have a pastor/boss who is challenging me to grow this year and allowing me to pursue avenues such as DY10 to truly seek out God given dreams!  You don't have to be in Dream Year to move towards the fulfillment of your God-given dream.  Decide now to grow.  Decide now to take initiative.  Decide now to pray and then respond to God's leading.  It truly can be a DreamYear for us all.

So...I'd love to hear your story.  What's your Dream, and what steps are you taking to see it become a reality?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Lord, is that you? 3 Keys To Confirming God's Will

It is the glory of God to conceal things,
but the glory of kings is to search things out.
- Proverbs 25:2

The search for "God's will" seems to be at an all time high in the midst of my friends and family members at this very moment. I don't ever remember a time that so many people were seeking direction involving jobs, relationships, relocation, education, retirement, and overall direction in life. The resounding question is: "God! What do you want me to do?!?"

For some this question is birthed from dreams of what could be and should be. For others the question comes because of unexpected circumstances forcing a new direction in life. Ultimately, it doesn't matter how the question got there, the fact that it's there puts an intensity back into our prayer to glorify God and make wise decisions about our future.

As I seek out direction for my own life and family here are some things I'm beginning to realize:
  1. God won't just tell you what to do. He's into relationship, not management. He wants you to seek out the answer by investigating, praying, and wrestling with Him. He must be your ultimate counselor above all (Proverbs 25:2; Psalm 16:7; Psalm 32:8;)
  2. God is ok with you asking for confirmation before proceeding with big decisions. Moses asked for a sign (and another, and another - see Exodus 4), Gideon asked for a wet fleece - then a dry one (Judges 6). Jonathan asked for specific conversation (also known as smack talk) from the Philistines (I Samuel 14). Some see this as a lack of faith, but God knows you. His dreams are big - really big, and if it doesn't shake you to the core and ask for confirmation, you probably haven't heard from God in the first place.
  3. God put people in your life to give wisdom - so seek their counsel. Just make sure they are the right people - there are way too many "yes-men" who don't have discernment, and way too many people who will discourage you due to their own lack of faith. (Proverbs 15:22; 11:14; 20:18)
Books have been written on this subject, but really it comes down to this: Be willing to wrestle with God and wait for his guidance. Struggle on the fine line of moving out in faith vs moving out in foolishness. I believe God loves a wrestler (see Jacob in Genesis 32).

God's will IS a big deal. What you do with your family DOES matter.

Don't just sit around and wait for an audible voice...
Don't just take a guess and do something...

Get busy and wrestle - and let God show you his will as you seek Him. He will counsel you, he will give you a sign, and he will confirm it through godly people...and then you will move in faith and confidence into the destiny of your life.