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Josh has an incredible heart for God and is passionate about helping create environments that lead people to experience God.  He has tremendous gifts that enable him to help churches advance the Kingdom of God.

Posts Tagged ‘authentic experiences’

Its YOUR Voice That Matters!

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Experience

I don’t think I’m alone in today’s post, but let me throw it out there and see.

Have you ever read a great book, authored by someone you know, or by someone you have eventually gotten to know, only to discover that they probably didn’t actually write it themselves?

I mean, they obviously had something to do with the book, maybe even thought up the topic, or wrote the outline, but they certainly didn’t write the book. There’s just no way they did. They don’t sound like that, they don’t carry themselves like that, and their voice certainly doesn’t match the one in the book.

Do you know what I mean?

It’s not that there is anything wrong with that, ghost writers are used all the time. The only problem I see is that eventually, it usually falls flat and fails to connect. The perfect example of this is looking at all the books that have been supposedly written by pop culture icons and musicians. I won’t be more specific than that, because I’m really a nice guy!

You see, we will only truly connect with our audiences and create awesome experiences, when we use OUR voice!

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Photo Credit: Dbl90 via Compfight cc

I’ve been reading Michael Hyatt’s book Platform, which is amazing by the way, and I highly recommend it, but a chapter recently stood out called ‘Create the Content Yourself.

In it Michael offers 3 points about why using our own voice matters.

  1. Its Personal.
  2. Its Authentic.
  3. Its Immediate.

He concludes by saying how there just aren’t any shortcuts. We can’t fake it. We’ll always be found out and we won’t fool anyone.

The reason why I love this so much is because it’s so true!

We live in an entitlement, all about the shortcut culture. How can we get something without all the necessary sacrifice? There are literally hundreds of businesses that pop up in every sector, claiming they can promise gain without pain, which of course never turns out to be true!

So of course using your own voice is key, but it presupposes that you’ve come to the realization that your voice is needed. And in case you’re still not there yet, let me encourage you!

YOUR VOICE IS DEFINITELY NEEDED!

Which leads me to one of the promises I can make to you, if you’re reading this. I have spent long enough, hiding and running from my voice, making agreements that say my voice didn’t matter, and didn’t have a place. Everything you read on this site will be my voice and come from my experiences. Unless of course it’s clearly communicated as a guest post from someone else.

So here’s a question for you:

How are you using your voice? What inspires you to speak into the world, sharing your voice?

Share your thoughts below I’d love to hear them!

Posted on: March 29, 2013

The #1 Way to Keep Audiences Engaged

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Experience

Let me try to put it this way.

For the last 15 years, the single arc of my life has been shaped around this notion of creating awesome, authentic, experiences.  I have been paid very well to ensure that the artists, entertainers, and speakers look and sound awesome, making sure that audiences are drawn in and captivated by what is being presented. That’s of course, in addition to getting married and raising 3 incredible little joy factories.

But seriously I’ve traveled all around the globe, working with some of the biggest celebrities and personalities you can think of with this goal in mind.

Here’s what I’ve found.

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Photo courtesy of Ahimsa Media / Photographer: Liz Kearsely

The #1 way to keep your audiences engaged in any event, endeavor, speech, book, sermon, or whatever other type of experience you can think of is this:

Mitigate each and every distraction.

Sounds simple doesn’t it.

Sometimes it is.

Sometimes thinking thru what those distractions are and finding them are simple, but other times, they are unknown and complicated.

The point and the practice though, should be to develop a discipline, in whatever creative element you’re involved, to plan ahead and do your best to mitigate these things.

That may require you to:

  1. Ask for help
  2. Break your normal routine
  3. Show up early or stay late

Many times it comes with a cost like having to rehearse more!

Whatever that looks like for you, think about the pay off.

Cause let me tell you, again from my experience, its well worth it.

What specific things do you do to mitigate the distractions and engage with your audience?

Share your thoughts below!

Posted on: March 11, 2013

Change comes from being present.

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Misc

Have you ever noticed in the New Testament, especially the gospels, that whenever a story is being told about Jesus, it always begins with something like: “then Jesus crossed the lake, and people gathered, or Jesus came to a place and a crowd began to form?”

Why is that?

Why is it, that wherever Christ went, people followed and seemed to always gather?

There are TONS of obvious christian platitudes that would serve as very good answers here, but I’m trying to look deeper.  

I’m trying to connect with why that doesn’t still happen today.

It makes sense to me that God incarnate, God made flesh, would attract people to himself.

  1. First of all, He’s God.
  2. Second of all, there has never ever been anything like him before.  He speaks differently, he acts differently, and he reacts differently.
  3. Lastly, there are the stories spreading like wildfire, about all the amazing miracles he is performing.

Those things naturally make sense to me.  And since I know that we have been created to be in relationship with Him and wired to worship Him, I can see why in New Testament times, that happened.

But still, why doesn’t it seem to be happening anymore?

How come each and every statistic out there say that a large percentage of 18-35 year olds are leaving the church in droves?

Now I’m an expert at many many things, but this I would never come close to being an expert at but I wonder and believe that its probably because you are I aren’t really that different from anyone else.  

I mean we don’t really stand out that much.

  1. Our speech patterns aren’t that different.
  2. Our giving patterns aren’t that different.
  3. Our families aren’t that different.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know that may sound harsh and crawl up on some people toes’ a bit, but can we just be honest with one another for a few more minutes?

Scripture tells us in James 2:22 that

“You see, his faith and his actions worked together. His actions made his faith complete.” (NLT)

So what else are we going to reasonably and logically conclude about our lives other than, our faith and our actions, quite simply don’t really attract all that much.

So what’s the response then, you may be asking?

Well, I’m so glad you asked!

I’m convinced, now more than ever, that the journey to living authentic lives, that result in actions of profound faith, attract our culture like bugs to our windshields, and dynamically effect, not just our families, but the world at large, is wrapped up in being present.

I plan on unpacking this further in my e-book that is coming out soon, so be looking for that, (shameless plug I know) but let me just briefly state, that being present is much bigger than simply “living in the moment.”  

Living in the moment is culture’s way of tempting us to do whatever we want whenever we want.

Thats not the Gospel! 

You see, I believe with all my heart that the Americanized version of church we have today, is on the verge of a massive renewal and revival.  I believe that as much as I believe what I’m breathing in right now, as I type this, is called oxygen.  

The question for us all today is:

What are you and I going to do?

How will we respond?

Posted on: February 27, 2013

Finding our true authentic voice.

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Misc

Being a story teller and having been involved in creating so many experiences over the years, one of the most important things I’ve come to realize is just how important it is to find our one true authentic voice.

There are so many voices out there in our world today begging for our attention. So many of them saying “do this and do that,” and even more now than ever saying “follow these 6 steps and you’ll be able to be just like me!”

But let me ask you a question. Is your voice meant to be just them?

Is your one true authentic voice being used to impact and influence the world around you?

Do you know that your voice has power? That your stories and your experience matter?

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There is not one single other person on the face of the planet like you.

Have you ever done a google search for your name, or searched on Facebook? You’ll quickly learn, that there are at least hundreds of other people with your same name, maybe even same spelling, but the truth is they are not you!

They cannot copy your stories, copy your experiences, and ultimately copy you!

Thats why you are so important. Don’t get caught in the trap of simply trying to follow someone else’s blueprint and forget to find your authentic voice and tell your true stories.

Its so easy to get sucked into the “doing” or “following” someone else’s best intentions to help guide us or influence us. But the reality is that when we let that misplace our true voice, we become like the person in the Book of James, who walks past a mirror and sees their face and then immediately forgets it.

Your voice matters.

Your stories matter.

Your experience matters.

What we need is more of you!

I love knowing how others are finding their voices.  Leave a comment and let me know what you’re going thru finding your true voice.

Posted on: February 20, 2013

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