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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 ‘Creating the Awesome’

Don’t Miss The Point, Your Life Already Matters

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Experience

I had a friend once tell me a story about a father.

Don't Miss The Point, Your Life Already Matters

Photo Credit: Wyoming_Jackrabbit via Compfight cc

This father was no different from you. He had a wife, kids and a family full of responsibilities. Like you, he rarely had any time to himself. He worked his whole life in a factory, earning a decent wage, and that work provided a home to live in and put food on the table. Year after year, in spite of the challenges this family faced, they continued to grow closer and closer together.

Sure, there’s lots of stuff you could say this family missed out on, but they were ok with that.

They were happy just as they were.

One year, the father saved and saved, stashing away every possible penny, in order to buy his oldest son a trumpet. Seeing the look on his face as he opened this awesome gift, made this father’s joy overflow. To the son, it was a dream come true. His greatest desire was to play the trumpet. He was more passionate about music than anything else in life.

From that time on, while most kids were out riding bikes or playing ball or something like that, he could be found practicing in a room somewhere.

And as this father’s son grew older and older, he began to experience more and more success. Before he knew it, he went from playing in front of hundreds to playing in front of thousands.

Then one day he got a phone call.

His father was dying.

Naturally the son, loving his father, immediately dropped everything to be by his side.

Having arrived home just in time, the father whispered these words to his son. He said, “Son, I’m so proud of you! I never could have imagined all the places you’ve been and all the people who have heard you play. I love you so very much!”

His father died that evening.

The son began to remember back to that one christmas, when his father gave him his first trumpet. He still had that trumpet packed away somewhere. He thought he knew the sacrifice his father had made all those years ago, but it wasn’t until the funeral, that he learned the true weight of his father’s sacrifice.

With dozens of neighbors and friends all gathered around to celebrate this father’s life, it was the father’s best friend that began to tell the son a whole different story.

He congratulated the son on having just played in Paris earlier that year, and went on to tell him of just how marvelous a piano player his father was. He told him of days long ago, when the two of them would sit in front of the old piano and dream of traveling the world together, much like the son was doing now. But all that changed when the son was born.

The son couldn’t believe what he was hearing. How could he have never known? How could his father have never told him?

That’s when it hit him.

That’s when he knew just how much his father had truly sacrificed for him. And he loved him for it all the more!

The tragedy of it all.

You see I’m convinced that most of the things we think are important, really aren’t that important at all.

Most of the stuff we think matters most doesn’t really matter much at all.

And the things we place the most value on, aren’t really that valuable after all.

There are those who would try to convince you that the father’s life was tragic. That he died without having tasted success or that somehow his life had been wasted on providing for that family year after year.

But I tell you the truth, that’s not the tragedy.

Tragedy isn’t missing out on a life that matters, it’s dying never realizing the life you had, was what Christ died for! (tweetable)

Tragedy is found in perverting the argument.

To say that one means more than the other. Or that one counts more the other.

Do I believe that you should pursue your passions, and dream big dreams? Absolutely! You bet! That’s what Creating the Awesome is all about!

But here’s the necessary shift.

Your life already matters.

To live life through the lens of the gospel means to understand that you’ve been uniquely and intentionally created in the image of The Father. (Gen 1:26-27)

Experiencing that is where any awesome will come from.

That’s where it all starts.

Don’t believe me?

Then download The Awesome Manifesto and see for yourself.

What do you think, was the father’s life tragic?

Share in the comments below!

Posted on: August 19, 2013

Even When Lebron Loses, He’s A Winner!

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Leadership

I’m not the biggest basketball fan. More like a casual observer, but when it comes championship time, I’m tuned in.

The other night Lebron James and the Miami Heat were completely blown out in-game 3 of the NBA Finals by the San Antonio Spurs.

Lebron James

Photo Credit: Dave Gillem via Compfight cc

Afterwards, while still sweating and cooling down from the game, Lebron, surrounded by reporters in the locker room, was asked dozens and dozens of questions. Most of which he just simply answered by saying he had to be better, play better, shoot better, etc.

But then one reporter asked him a question, that caused Lebron to turn his head and look directly at him.

His question?

It’s hard to hear, but it was something along the lines of how did it feel to get beat so bad.

Ouch, right?

The best part was Lebron’s response. It was awesome.

“It’s just one game. Doesn’t matter how many points you score. It’s still just one game.”


Lebron’s still sweating from the game, and some reporter is trying to put it to him by asking him a question like that, and he just simply says, listen, it’s just one game. You have to win 4 to get the trophy.

That’s awesome.

That’s perspective.

That’s BIG picture thinking.

That’s what set’s people apart from those that Create the Awesome and those that do not.

Not everyone will be a Lebron James, nor should everyone try. But no one can be you or ever will be!

I’ve heard it said over and over again, and have finally began to believe it myself, but when we change the story we tell ourselves, we change our world!

Change the story, change the world! [awesome starts with tweeting that]

So what if one thing or another today doesn’t go our way, Creating the Awesome is more a marathon, than a sprint.

What change in perspective do you need in order to stay focused on the bigger picture and move past the temporary disappointments and setbacks?

Leave a comment in the comments below!

Posted on: June 13, 2013

Intent Is King

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Experience, Leadership

Do you want to know what Creating the Awesome is all about?

Do you want to know the secret to creating Awesome Experiences in your life that are sure to impact the world around you?

Then watch this video below. In it, John Hockenberry gives a Ted Talk about design and the secret to all good design. The beautiful thing, as he alludes to, is that this secret goes way beyond just design.


Intent is everything.

Ever heard the phrase being intentional?

Leaders often use the term respond as opposed to react, and the assumption is that a response includes intent, where as a reaction is uncontrolled and chaotic.

All of us can relate to this in one shape or another. I know I have asked my kids several times about their intent after hitting their brother or sister. Most of the time their answer and our answer to a question of intent remains unanswered.

And that’s the problem isn’t it.

Most of the time, we live life without intent. We are on auto-pilot, cruise-control, standby, waiting for something to drop, hoping something will change.

Change involves intent.

It requires it.

No, scratch that, it demands it!

Sure it’s easy to imagine something like an engineer designing a car with intent, and certainly we would all be first in line to blast that same said engineer if the opposite was true, but how much more is true for you today?

Are you loving your kids with intent?

Are you loving your neighbors with intent?

Are you leading your family, church, team, executives, or volunteers with intent?

Probably not, and that’s ok if average and ordinary is all you’re after.

But Creating the Awesome and creating Awesome Experiences that engage others in ways that manifest a rippling effect in our world will require intent.

Perhaps it’s time to say to yourself, enough is enough and live with intent.

How could living with intent dramatically change the way you go about living your life?

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

Posted on: June 7, 2013

Takeaways From Morocco

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Experience

Wednesday, May 22nd, began just like every other day. I woke up at 5 am and began my usual morning routine when suddenly an urgent email came in, and to make a long story short, by 6 pm that evening I was on a flight to Morocco by way of London. I was being brought in on a large awards/fashion/music event in Marrakech, Morocco. And let me just say, it was awesome!

The whole event was a huge success and the challenge I was presented with was one I’ll never forget. Working with such a distinct and diverse people group presents all sorts of opportunities for growth and being the observant communicator I am, I wanted to present a few key takeaways from my experience with you all.

Photo Credit: marcp_dmoz via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: marcp_dmoz via Compfight cc

So here they are…

1. Moroccan Time.

I’m not talking about time zones here. I’m talking more about pace of life. You see I’ve worked all over the globe, so I’m keenly aware to the difference in the pace of things in different parts of the world, however, Moroccan time, is a whole different ball game. But what I kept thinking about was the insanity of trying to force my schedule, within reason, upon a culture and pace of life that simply didn’t need it. It’s no secret that here in America, we want everything now. Yesterday as a matter of fact. We have more fast food restaurants per capita than anywhere else in the world and for a business to offer free overnight shipping has nearly become an expected bonus. So having to construct a massive stage over a pool, and integrate all the different facets of technology, branding, and mediums, in just a few days, with a slew of people speaking different languages, was quite a challenge.

The pace of life, can easily rob us of the beauty and sacrament of the moment. [tweet that if you like]

2. Haters are everywhere.

Jon Acuff has famously coined the phrase “Hater’s Math” and what surprised me was that even on the other side of the world, in Morocco, of all places, haters still exist. It was really challenging for me to reframe my experience in light of all the many congratulations and compliments from the organizers and fellow producers for a job well done, when all I could think about was that one hater. That one individual who seemed to just want to make everyone’s life miserable. But it just goes to show, you truly can’t please everyone, and when forming an identity around trying, the truest perspectives will be stolen from you.

Our ability to know the truth, will be stolen from us, when we create an identity based on people pleasing. [tweet that too]

3. Building a team.

This was the most amazing takeaway for me and one that I know just about everyone can benefit from. Everything in life worth doing well, that makes a difference or creates change involves a team. So learning how to attract and recruit, building that team, are necessary skills that we all need to sharpen if we are to Create the Awesome. So imagine a large group of people, speaking different languages. Some are speaking French, some Arabic, some Spanish, and even some Farsi. None are speaking english. That was my team in Morocco! Luckily for me, I understand and speak enough French and Spanish to get by, but honestly the key to success was learning a few Arabic phrases. That showed my team I was willing to get to their level and work with them, not just order them around. By the end of the week, we were like a giant family, laughing and thoroughly enjoying one another. Learning how to take a group of people, all with different skill sets, different passions and interests and unite them under a single purpose is one of the single greatest characteristics of a leader. I was honored and proud to experience that this past week!

Awesome happens when a leader builds and unites a team under a common purpose. [To be Awesome, tweet that!]


Although I have traveled and worked in just about every continent and country on the planet, this experience from Marrakech, Morocco tested and challenged me in ways, I truly count as blessings!

Have you ever had an experience that challenged you, but looking back on it, you consider it a blessing?

Leave a comment below!

Posted on: June 3, 2013

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Josh Collins
Franklin, TN
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