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Dream Big... For years I heard people tell me my songs were too difficult for people to sing. My view was that people were more capable than we give them credit for. Many told me I could not succeed in the music business unless I was in Nashville. My view was that I wanted my family to not need a ministry like mine someday - so I would focus on them and Jesus and not worry about my ministry. Did this lessen my dreams? No way. I continued to dream big even though I chose to teach songs that were more complex than the popular worship choruses. What I found was that people were after deep, meaty music and lyrics which spoke to their deep needs. I continued to dream of making recordings that would reach places around the world. I continued to write music and write books even without a publisher because my dream said that others would need what I had to share. My dreams were often loftier than my human eyes could see a way to! DJ singing at the National Day of Prayer or ministering at the NCAA Final Four? Why not?!... I have learned that the Lord is the Dream Giver. If I can dream it, He can give the means to getting there! I write as if millions are going to sing my music. I write as if millions are going to be encouraged by the stories of God’s grace and redemption in my life. I not only set goals toward those dreams. I actually begin to walk toward my dreams! I act as if they are really going to happen - even if people think I am crazy! I dream outside the lines. One of my favorite motivators is for people to tell me something can not be done! Them’s fightin’ words to me! Dream big, then walk towards those dreams. God will begin to pour out creativity on your heart and life. As you come face to face with an obstacle to your dreams, God has a way of showing you a new perspective that takes you around, under, over, or right through those very obstacles!... ‘For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.’ Jeremiah 29:11 NASB

The Table of the King

Be a Risk-Taker… For some people, taking risks is the essence of life. I have climbed mountains and have walked on ledges with 5,000 drops on either side. I have explored caves where I followed a string to find my way back out. I have jumped out of an airplane at 5,000 feet. I have gone scuba diving and swam with 12 reef sharks swimming around me for 45 minutes. I have skied the north face at Crested Butte and the double diamonds at Breckenridge. I have sung in front of 60,000 people. I have shared my story of redemption in honesty and battled the thoughts that are often the consequences of honesty. To take no risks is to close one’s self off from life. If you risk nothing, you gain nothing. If you are afraid to risk loving someone else because you have been hurt in the past, you will not know love...because love requires relationship. Taking risks brings out the creativity God has placed in every living person. Jesus went to the cross knowing many would not see the purpose of His sacrifice or place their faith in Him. That must have hurt. That was the risk He was willing to take because He knew He needed to provide a way to relationship with God. His risk was life to me. God’s Word is clear concerning the need to be risk takers. Just read the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30. God is seeking visionary men and women who are willing to take the risks required to see the Kingdom of God advanced. How do we overcome the fear of failure that often confronts us when risk is involved? We put on the truth. Truth leads to freedom. The first step toward truth always involves our honesty. The truth is, taking risks for the Kingdom of God will bless God and it will bless others. Failing to reach a goal or failing at a task does not equal failure. Just ask Thomas Edison if the 10,000 failed attempts at inventing the light bulb was worth the one success? Just ask Michael Jordan if all the missed baskets were worth the skill they helped build which exalted him to the highest ranks in NBA history. In each case, both would say they had not failed at those missed attempts. Edison would contend he hadn’t failed. He had simply found 10,000 ways to not make a light bulb! Get God’s perspective and be a risk taker - like Him. Use it to fuel your creative fires!... Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2 NASB

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