Find a way to keep doing what you love

I’m at this point where I must decide what I’m going to do with my life.  I’m not quite 30 but this is the time in my life to discover who I am and learn about it to the best of my ability.  But it is also the time to set the foundation for what is to come.

So I am trying to pursue avenues I haven’t been through yet in order to keep doing what I love.  God has placed a few things in my life that burn within me to come out and I am just starting to do those things to the best of my ability.  I don’t want to look back on my life at 50 and think what a waste it was.  I want to do what I love all the time.  I don’t have time to settle for things that I am not supposed to do.  It is not the time to do good things but great things that only God has called us to.

A pastor/author from DC, Mark Batterson, once said that his greatest fear is to succeed at the wrong thing.  What he is saying in that quote is that He wants to do what God is calling him to do and nothing else.  Paul in the Bible said that he desired to know nothing among the people except that Jesus was crucified and rose from the dead.  That was his focus and that was all that he did with his life.  In other words, proclaiming that truth was what kept Paul up at night.

So here is my challenge to you today:
Find a way to keep doing what you love.

Yesterday, we talked about spending time with God in order to find out what He wants us to do with our lives.  Today, I want you to figure out a way to sustain it.  And here is a hint:  you’ll probably have to make some money at it in order to sustain the time you put into it.

There is no way that John Grisham could have written books while being a full time lawyer after a certain point.  He had to choose to stick to the thing that he loved.  So he quit being an attorney and focused on writing.  You can’t be a full time musician if you don’t make some type of money through gigs or lessons.  It is just the sad truth.

Do some research.  My uncle once said that the greatest advice he could give to someone is to find out what you love and figure out how to get paid to do it.  So how can you get paid to do what you love?  That’s the greatest career that you could build for yourself.  Sell yourself to no end and get your name out there.  Build a platform for the work which you want to do.

I promise you that it is hard work.  I am just now getting started with this step and I can tell you it is awkward asking for gigs and asking for new students and creating things that may never see the light of day.  It is a humbling experience but in a year or two, when I am sustained financially doing what I want to do, it will all have been worth it.  But I am also having a blast when I’m just able to do what I love right now.

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Set List 2.26.12

This past week we had a smaller group because our electric guitarists is actually on a container boat traveling from LA to New Zealand to fulfill God’s calling on His life to write a book.  We also had a sick female singer so we just had an acoustic guitar, piano, and drums.  I was a little shocked and relieved that it sounded so good.

Here was our set list:
We are free – Matt Redman
Dancing Generation – Matt Redman
What Joy – Generation Church
Came to my rescue – Hillsong

Abba – Jonathan David Helser

Here were some of my notes from Tim’s message that is up on our website here.

Tim focused on Acts 2:42-47 and it was one of the best messages I have heard on the subject of community.

  • “You will never accomplish what God wants for you with the wrong people.”
  • “You cannot grow if you’re not intimately involved with a church.”
  • “Community is not just about confrontation but also about encouragement.”
  • “Things need to see the light before they come to healing.”
  • “I want to have faith like a child where I obey on the spot.”
  • “They accepted people not for who they would become but for who they were at that moment.”
  • “In my community, I don’t want the self-righteous but the hungry.”
  • “When you get an appetite for God, you can’t help but see growth.”
  • “When we worship and live like true Christians, we’ll see growth.”

George Lucas: Interviews

I just got finished reading a great book on George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars.  I am not sure why I started watching this series a couple weeks ago but I had a huge desire to do so.  I guess it has to do with the re-release of Star Wars Episode 1 in 3D.

Either way, I picked up this book.  And I was fascinated by it.  By both the depth that he goes into to make his films as well as just the deep annoyance he finds the establishment of Hollywood.  I never knew how much went into a film before reading this film and honestly I still have no idea about what all it takes.

This book really makes me want to do more with my music and my creativity because it shows just how determined we must be in order to bring our dreams to life.

I was very encouraged by this book and really wish that each of you would be blessed by the determination and work ethic of someone like George Lucas.  Even if you don’t appreciate his films (which I don’t want to associate with it if you hate Star Wars – just kidding, but seriously), you can appreciate the fact that he brought his dreams to life.

The book also showed me many things that I had no clue about.  Lucas always went with his gut and had to take many cuts because he wanted things to be a certain both in his films and in his contracts.  Example would be that George Lucas gave up a huge portion of his salary (circa $500,000) in order to keep the merchandising rights to Star Wars.  This single choice led him to be worth almost 2 billion dollars.  Think of all the books, toys, movies, TV shows, and Burger King meals that have endorsed Star Wars.

4 out of 5.

Go find what you most love

I am very eagerly awaiting the desire to see who God makes me.  There are so many passions drawn up within my heart that I cannot contain what is going on within me.

But one thing that is truly stirring me up in my heart is this thought:

Go find what you most love.

That thought drives me to focus on music.  It drives me to create all that I do.  It pushes me to the very depths of my being and out of it, my heart rejoices.

Because until the past couple months, I wasn’t doing the things that I most loved.  I was doing what was expected of me or more importantly, what I expected someone in my position to do.  I joined 24/7 Church as a Worship/Youth Pastor and there were certain things that I put upon myself that I should have never put there.

One is the fact that I was trying to do youth ministry like most other youth ministries do them.  I tried to do it like my pastor did it in college.  And guess what happened?

It didn’t work.

I found myself getting worn out.  I found myself completely not following through in simple areas.  And I realized that there wasn’t something wrong with me.  I was just in the wrong place.  I wanted to speak and this was my outlet.  My heart did not burn for the kids as they do for those who are in need of discipleship.  I cared more about the discipleship plan for the whole church and found myself thinking about those things more than I did about fun retreats or events.

Don’t get me wrong, I loved being the youth pastor.  But it comes nowhere close to what God is doing through me now.

So here’s my advice to you:

Spend some time with God one on one and find out what He has been placing in you since the beginning of time.  Then keep doing it.  Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about.

That for me was music.  Creative projects.  Discipleship plans.  Bible study.

Who you are

This week I want to start a series on finding out who you are and what you are to do.  I have 4 posts this week all about what God is calling you to do with your life.  It is a simple thing that God is working through me during this time and I wish to share with you all that I am learning so that we can both grow into the people that God wants us to be.

Here are the posts coming:

Go find what you most love.  (Tuesday, 2.28.12)
Find a way to keep doing it.  (Wednesday, 2.29.12)
Do what you love with excellence.  (Thursday, 3.1.12)
Learn from others wherever you are.  (Friday, 3.2.12)

Where you wanna be

I have a picture on my phone that says,  “Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about.”

This picture says a lot about who we are to be.  The thing that you keep coming back to is the thing that you need to be focusing on.  Have you been thinking about being in ministry for 5 years or more?  Have you talked about becoming a cop?  Have you sat at home wishing you had a better life?

Well, spend some time thinking through what drives you.  What motivates you and brings you the most joy.

Then, go and do that thing.  Find a way to make money at it.  Sustain your passions and live them out fully.

Going from where you are to where you want to be is a hard task and it is one that is worth spending time on.  I have found that the people who get to where they want to go, do 2 things:

1) They figure out where they are.
2) They figure out where they want to be.

That is it.  This is the principle of life that eludes most people and you can do something about it today.  Spend some time thinking through your calling in life.  Whether it be playing music, writing a book, working in a homeless shelter, being a stay-at-home mom or any number of other things.  Find out what you love and go do it.

Figuring out who you are meant to be is a living out of your passions.  We aren’t called to do things we hate or aren’t good at.  I used to want to be a youth pastor and thought I would be good at it but God ripped that desire out of my heart because He showed me that that was a good thing but He wanted me to have a better thing.  And although, it was hard at the time, God has ultimately brought me to a level of deeper passion and desire.  God had to remove me from that position in order to see that He had a different place for me that came forth from the passions that have been in me all along.

That is my hope and prayer for you.  So here is my homework for you today:

Go find what you most love.
Find a way to keep doing it. (Hint: you’ll probably have to make some money at it in order to sustain the time you put into it).
Do it to the best of your ability more and more each day.
Learn from others wherever you are.

Day 12 of 100

Genesis 39:1 – 41:57

This is the longest section that we have read thus far and there is a lot here but it moves pretty fast.  How are you enjoying this time moving through God’s word?

Joseph has had it rough since he turned 17 and it only gets worse.  The whole time Joseph was overseer at Potiphar’s house, “the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake.”  “The blessing of the Lord was on all that he had.”  That’s an amazing statement to make because that is what I would love to see in my life.

Joseph was then framed for adultery by Potiphar’s wife because he denied her repeatedly.  Then he was sent to prison (39:6-23).  The keeper at the prison then put Joseph in charge of it, just like Potiphar did in his household (39:21-23).  Joseph was completely in charge of everything there and the keeper did not have to meddle in the affairs, same thing happened in Potiphar’s household.

Joseph was then around when the cupbearer and the baker for the king of Egypt were put into prison.  The chief cupbearer and the baker both had dreams and Joseph predicted/interpreted them (former would die and latter would be restored, both within 3 days).  Verse 23 points out that the chief cupbearer forgot about Joseph (40:14-15) once he was restored and set free.

Pharoah then has 2 dreams that need interpreting and he couldn’t find anyone in Egypt able to do so.  And the chief cupbearer then remembers that Joseph has the ability to interpret dreams (41:1-13).  But before Joseph comes to Pharoah, he shaved himself and changed his clothes (v. 14).  Because when you go to see the king, you need to prepare yourself a little.  It is the same way with God.  We need to prepare ourselves in order to meet with Him.  It is a casual encounter but a life-changing one every time.  Let’s approach it that way.

It is great to note that when asked about how to interpret the dream, he points to God as the answer and not to himself (41:15-16).  The dreams were simply that “God has shown to Pharoah what he is about to do” (41:28).  These dreams were meant to show that there would be 7 years of plenty followed by 7 years of famine (41:29-32).  Joseph even tells Pharoah to select “a discerning and wise man” to be in charge of all this (41:33-36).  Was he promoting himself for this role?  I think that he was a little bit.  Which I have no problem with at all.  God gave him the wisdom for a reason.  Use it for His glory. Joseph then lays out a plan for how to survive and proceeded to accomplish it.

Pharoah puts Joseph in charge of all Egypt (41:37-45).  This is very important to note because Pharoah says to Joseph that “only as regards to the throne will I be greater than you.”  Joseph was thus restored completely and promoted beyond belief.  He was also in charge once again and in a way that foreshadows Moses.

Joseph was only 30 when he was put in charge of all of Egypt (41:46-49).  He went throughout Egypt and made sure to save a ton of supplies for the coming faith.  Could this be a warning to us today to truly “save for a rainy day?”

Then Joseph got married…to Potiphera’s daughter, Asenath.  Potiphera was a priest of On.  I am not sure of On is a god or idol or if it is a city.  It would be interesting to find that out.

Joseph had 2 sons, Manasseh & Ephraim.
Manasseh = “for God has made me forget all my hardship and all my father’s house.”  Ephraim = “for God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction.”

Everyone suffered during the famine (all countries throughout the earth)  but Egypt had plenty to go off of and “all the earth came to Egypt to Joseph to buy grain” (41:53-57).  This reminds me of the great wisdom of David and Solomon.  And just like the early church, Joseph found favor with all the people.

My question today relates to what the world thinks of us as Christians.  Does it think of us as a blessing or as a curse?  Because God wants us to ultimately be a blessing to all people everywhere.  All the earth should be blessed because of us.  People should rejoice when new Christians are reborn because we are such a life-changer through God’s power.