Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Pursuing Your Dreams
Matthew 25: 14-18 Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money.
Psalm 51:10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
It’s been a while since I took time out to blog and encourage each of you. Over the past few weeks I have been putting my thoughts on paper, in order to put what is written into action in my life. I know the importance of being obedient to God’s direction in my life and today I wanted to remain focused and determined to do His will and do it His way through this blog.
In today’s message I would like us to touch back on our dreams. I want us to get focused on the visions God has given us for His honor and His glory. Each of us was created for a purpose. We were born on purpose, with purpose and for a purpose.
What is your purpose?
What is the dream that God has placed on the inside of you?
What are the talents that you possess that God is waiting for you to step out on faith and allow yourself to be used according to His purpose for your life?
Instantly you should be able to answer the questions if you are being honest with yourself. I find that some times we know what God has placed in us to do or become but we limit ourselves to our own understanding and our ways. Hopefully as we journey forward we will step aside and allow God to have full control.
In the series “Dynamic Dreams” we learned that we need to write, work and measure our plan. In this series “Pursuing Your Dreams” I want to touch back on each one of those steps.
Writing the Plan
When we pursue our dreams, we need to organize our thoughts on paper. We need to carve out some time and just write all things that come to mind. We should list out our likes and dislikes, wants, needs and desires. We then need to identify areas of growth and development in order for the things that are written to become a living reality.
So much of our time is wasted in a day on things that allow us to waste more of our God given time. Just think for a moment how much do you write in emails, on Facebook, MySpace and Twitter?
How much time do we spend doing things that do not benefit us?
How do you spend your time?
How much of your time is spent living out your dream?
It’s time to identify where we spend most of our time, love and commitment and make it all come together for our purpose. It’s time to discover our differences and use them to our advantage in stepping higher in the will of God for our lives. It’s time that we take the first step towards pursuing our dream today and write out all the things we believe God has planted on the inside of us.
When I sat down to draft one of my books “Pursuing Your Dream”, I had to think about the ways that I was different. There are several books out that will encourage people to pursue their dream; I had to ask myself what would be different about my book? What would be different about the information I had to share? In order to answer those questions I had to examine who I AM says I am. I had to take note of all the things I believed that made me unique. I had to focus on my difference.
Once I discovered all of the things that were different about me. I was able to narrow my plan to focus solely on the area where my heart is and that is to encourage others in need, despite the cost. I realized that no one else has walked my journey but me. Anything that I would place on the inside of my books would be from my walk and unique. I learned a while ago that when we discover a problem, we are the ones with the solution. Daily I find new ways to bring increase to all that I do, especially for others.
In order for us to develop a plan that will benefit us along our journey we need to focus on our difference and connect our plan to our passion. I have learned that people will go above and beyond for things that they love.
What is it that you love to do?
How do you spend your free time?
If you could get more time, how would you spend it?
In Matthew 25 is a parable about 3 individuals who were given talents and 2 out of the 3 pleased the master. The other servant chose to do nothing, but hide his talent and displeased the master.
What are you hiding from the Master today?
What is it that God has been reminding you of daily?
What is that one thing that you do better than anyone else?
What is it that you always wanted to be when you grew up?
What are you beating yourself up about?
Are you saying I should have done this, or I would have done that, or I could have done this? If so I telling you today that you still have time. You don’t have to continue to give up. It’s time to step up! It’s not too late! The time is now!
I encourage you today to take the necessary steps forward to write out your plan. If you wanted to be a lawyer, a doctor, a model, a teacher, or an artist, the time to begin your journey is now! If you want to be married, a parent or even a better person, the time is now! This month we celebrate great African Americans who took steps of faith in pursuing their dreams. What if they just would have allowed fear, laziness, limitation, etc to stop them from moving forward? What life would we have today, if it had not been for Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his dream?
"Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
In John 5:1-14 we learn that Jesus heals a lame man. He had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, "Do you want to get well?"
Today He is saying to you “Do you want to get well?”
In other words do you want your chance to get out of whatever it is that has you stuck?
Do you want your chance to live life more abundantly?
If you continue to sit around doing nothing, nothing will continue to happen for you!
Don’t allow your situation or circumstances to hinder you from pursuing your dream. The fact may be that you may have been a mess and feel invalid, but God has a different plan for your life.
The lame man replied to Jesus that no one would help him and Jesus said to him "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” It’s time to stop waiting on someone else to take interest in your dream. It’s your dream and that means it’s for you to seek God and make it happen. God is all that you need. He is waiting on you. It’s time we put in the work.
How will you respond when the master comes to evaluate your use of His talents?
I challenge you today to get up and pick up your mat and walk forward in pursuing your dreams. Daily we will touch on different ways in order for us to move forward. It’s time you approach each day with great expectation! God wants only the best for us.
Tennille L. Whittington
Prayer for Today
Psalm 51:10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Lord as I read Psalm 51:10 I stretch my hands to thee, Lord I ask that You create in me a pure heart, Lord I ask that You remove all things that caused me to have a hardened heart, Lord I ask that You renew me by diving in my mind and refreshing my thoughts with Your words, Lord I ask that you renew my heart to flow with Your Word, Lord I ask that You dive to the pit of my soul and settle as You renew a steadfast spirit within me, Lord I surrender my life today and I journey forward following your lead, stepping in Your footsteps towards my dream! Use me Lord I am available, I rest in You! In Jesus name, Amen
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Romans 8:37. …. we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
A lot of folks have been calling, texting, emailing and facebooking where is the blog? They questioned me as if I had given up, but nope I did not. I decided to allow the last message about Esther’s journey titled “Released by His Love into Our Next Assignment” to be the message of the day all of last week. Each day I study the Word and seek God in developing a blog for the day. Last week that message had me seeking out my next assignment.
On last Monday I developed the title for this blog “Destined for Greatness: Knowing Your Worth”. As I wrote the message out on Monday it seemed incomplete. It was a lengthy writing but it was empty. I just couldn’t seem to put what I had been hearing from God into a complete message. Over the week I heard many great messages, received many great signs, but still I wanted them all to come together. I learned that when in search for our assignments it’s not something we assign, but something we discover.
On Tuesday I tried to allow my experiences of the day reshape my writing, but it didn’t happen. I was busy day after day, until I realized that I am at a place in my life where I dictate to myself how my day is going to go and what I am going to do. Experience after experience in all areas of my life last week I realize I was the shot caller over my own life. No longer was I allowing people, places or things to get the best of me. Those around me that knew how to push my buttons and get me off track no longer were able to do so. Things that use to irritate me didn’t seem to bother me.
There were meetings I sat in and events I attended that made me think twice about all that God has been doing in and through my life. I had to make some tough decisions over the last week, but they all were for the best. I had to realize my mind is a battlefield. The battle of my life is in my mind. I had to reposition my thoughts to focus on where I believe God wants me to go. I had to look all my opposition in the face and determine that it was not going to make or break me. I had to deposit deep within my mind, heart and soul that God was in lead and that I was to follow wholeheartedly, because He has open doors that I know only He could have done.
Over this past month God has blown my mind and I am extremely grateful.
A day earlier from writing the message about Esther, I wrote about Ruth. I wrote about how her journey from Moab to Bethlehem changed her life forever. I wrote about how her story started out a disaster but as the story went along we seen how she was destined for greatness. We learned that no matter how it looks to us, God will and can make a way. Even in the story of Esther because of who she was, she was not able to take part in the selection for the new queen, but we seen in her story she was also destined for greatness. As we looked at Saul and his transformation into Paul we can see that he was also destined for greatness. We can go through the bible book by book, chapter by chapter, story by story and read about a lot of folks who were destined for greatness.
In this month we will celebrate the lives of many great African Americans like Dr. Martin Luther King, President Barack Obama, Louis Armstrong, Dr. Ben Carson, Bill Cosby, Michael Jordan, Mary McCloud Bethune, Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, and the list goes on and on. They were all people who have also faced great challenges but they were also destined for greatness. They are also people who knew their value and knew they had impact on people and change. They did what was necessary to make a difference and bring about change.
What is your impact? How will you be remembered? What is your purpose God has established for your life? If there was only one word to describe you what would it be? The word I chose when I was asked that questioned was unique. It means one of a kind. I chose the word because I decided to seek out my differences and use them to seek out my worth. I chose to find out what was unique about me and how I could use my gift to help others get to where God needs them to be.
In the midst of helping and developing others, God has been healing and developing me from all the hurt and pain from my past. He has strengthened my self esteem and led me into walking into His confidence. God has placed me in a new place, on a new assignment, with a new motivation, headed towards my destiny because I chose to chase after Him. I chose to find out why and how I was created. I chose to live life as His Word says I was created in His image and likeness. I chose to love and serve His people, as He does.
I know and believe I am valuable, which means I finally know my worth. I finally believe I am destined for greatness. I like to say I am who I Am says I am and that means I am destined for greatness. I like to bless everyone I interact with, because I make it my business to put thoughts in their minds, a smile on their face and in their heart and pray for the Holy Spirit to fill their soul. I navigate ways to help others get to the places they need to in this life and lend a hand at all times regardless of payment. I know that my rewards come from God and I served from my heart at all times.
We have to get to a place when we follow our passion and allow God to move on our behalf. We have to get to a place where money doesn’t dictate anything to us, but we are in control of it. We have to get to a place where we can grow in love with someone and not allow lust to lead us into selling ourselves short. We have to get to a place where we are not used, abused and walked all over in any areas of our life. We have to get to a place where we walk in God’s confidence at all times. We have to get to a place where we can make ourselves happy and not depend on someone else to do so for us.
It’s time that we see who God sees when He looks at us. One song that I love to hear daily is Marvin Sapps’ song “He Saw the Best in Me”. It’s time we live as God sees us and know our worth. So today take a step of confidence and believe that in Romans 8:37 that we are more than conquerors!
Today is the day that we stop allowing people to determine what we will and will not have. It’s time we stop living life in a box and step out of it. It’s time we stop living life in a cycle and break it! It’s time that we take the necessary steps towards being confident in who we are in God and walk in His humility. It’s time that we master forgiveness and experience God’s peace and joy.
No longer should we allow people to label us or hold us back in our past! No longer should we use excuses about would haves, should haves and could haves! No longer should we be looking for a hand out! No longer should we sell ourselves short to a man or woman that does not have our best interest at heart!
Women no longer should we chase after men! If he is a real man of God, give him the opportunity to seek after you. Men no longer just settle for anybody, but settle for the one that completes you totally. In relationships love should be unconditional and we should grow deeper in love daily. No longer should we settle for relationships built on lust. It’s time to set some high standards by raising the bar and stick with them!
I challenge each of us to continue to write out our dreams, goals and desires, but also I ask that we tap into our worth! It’s time we know and believe we are destined for greatness! Our lives are also worth celebrating! We are not quitters, we are fighters! We do not have to settle for less, we want the more! We do not have to accept people using, abusing and walking all over us! It’s time we experience true love and relationship. It’s time we take and stand and walk with God and allow Him to show us our full potential!
We must walk in God’s confidence at all times and possess all things He has assigned for our lives! It’s time to stop assuming and come boldly after what you need, want and desire! If you know it’s of God, who can stop you? Who can take it from you? The answer is nobody! Reach towards the goal because you are more than a conqueror!
I want to deposit this in your mind, heart and soul that you are destined for greatness! You are somebody! It’s time you know that you are valuable and that God loves you and that He is preparing to do more than you could ever ask or think in your life!
Tennille L. Whittington
Prayer for Today
Lord as I read this I ask that you strengthen my self esteem, Lord I ask that You teach me more about how valuable I am in you, Lord I want to get to the place in my life when no one can use, abuse or walk all over me, Lord I am more than a conqueror, Lord up on my job have your way in my life, Lord in my home have your way in my life, Lord in my relationship have your way, Lord in my friendships have your way, Lord in my finances how your way, Lord today I step forward closer into Your presence for you take me higher in You, Lord I believe I am destined for greatness! In Jesus name, Amen!