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The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why — Mark Twain

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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 ‘peace’

The 7 Rules To Follow In Discovering Your Passion

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Experience

“Passion is the unique gifting, wiring, aptitude, and opportunity that makes you come alive and fulfills all your God-given potential.” – Louie Giglio

The 7 Rules To Follow In Discovering Your Passion

Photo Credit: VinothChandar via Compfight cc

One of the things that brings me the greatest joy in life is working with people who are full of passion. There is this sense that passion can overcome any obstacle and push back the many voices of fear you encounter.

When I meet with a potential client, one of the first questions I ask is, what are you most passionate about?

Their answer, more often than not, gives me the clearest picture of who they are and provides context to where they are in their journey.

But the reality is, most of us can’t identify what we’re passionate about.

Most of us are just too busy, overwhelmed with demands, responsibilities, and trying to compensate for our perceived deficiencies to discover, much less speak to what we’re passionate about.

I know sometimes hearing and being presented with truth can be a hard pill to swallow, but can I be bold for a minute and offer you some truth?

This is why you’re struggling.

This is why you feel so much pressure and know so little peace.

This is why when you do create space in your life, the flood of doubt, fear, anxiety, and depression start to overwhelm you.

How do I know this?

Because you are not alone. I’m the same way. I fight this battle all the time.

The degree of peace we experience in our life will come in direct proportion to our ability to rest in the center of where our passion resides. (You should tweet that)

You see you are special.

Not special in the self-help, pseudoscience kind of way, but special in that when you drew your first breath as a baby, you had been intentionally created.

And with that intent comes purpose, and purpose will always be fueled by passion.

A.W. Tozer is considered to be one of the greatest theologians of the 20th century. In his brilliant work The Pursuit of God, he gives us a great list to consider in order to discover our passion. He coins it the 7 Rules of Self-Discovery.

1. What we want most.
2. What we think about most.
3. How we use our money.
4. What we do with our leisure time.
5. The company we enjoy.
6. Who and what we admire.
7. What we laugh at.

Tozer also famously says:

“Hardly anything else reveals so well the fear and uncertainty among men as the length to which they will go to hide their true selves from each other and even from their own eyes.”

Don’t let that be true of you.

What answers do you have to these rules?

What are you most passionate about?

Share in the comments below!

Posted on: August 30, 2013

Worship Wednesday: We Won’t Be Shaken

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Worship Wednesday

Just about every communicator on the planet likes to create and use metaphor as a way to make a point. Often times they employ a technique of divide and conquer, meaning they divide people into 2 groups by saying something like there are really only 2 kinds of people in this world, people who like M&M’s and people who like Reese’s Pieces.

This is obviously just a silly example, but what I have learned over the years is that most of the time, there are 2 types of reactions from people when you engage them in a discussion about The Creative Order.

Most of the time, its confusion.

So what’s The Creative Order, you’re asking?

Well, watch the lyric video below and you’ll begin to understand.

Still wondering what The Creative Order is all about?

Proverbs 16:33 says this, “We may throw the dice, but the Lord determines how they fall.”

Starting to get it now?

The Creative Order speaks to our identity, but more than that, it speaks to what we allow to form our identity, what we base our identity on.

It alludes to why, as Christians, we could ever sing such words as “We Won’t Be Shaken.”

Even in the face of hard providences, and the darkest nights of the soul, these words resonate, bringing peace and comfort to those in need.

When The Creative Order is in balance, reconciled, settled, or however you want to put it, our identity isn’t shaken when circumstances don’t go our way.

It’s precisely in those moments we believe and develop a deeper understanding when James 1:2 says, “Dear brothers and sisters, when trouble comes your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.”

Joy?

No, not just joy.

GREAT JOY!

If you’re following along with me, then you can imagine what comes next.

Extravagant Worship.

Yep. That’s right.

The Creative Order becomes the basis of how we can worship not in spite of our circumstances, but because of them. [love others by tweeting that!]

All throughout the bible you read story after story of men and women who talk about being chased, killed, attacked, hungry, having no home, abused, thrown in fires, tossed to lions, betrayed, and yet there is always a line somewhere that follows that says something like, yet I will praise The Lord, or I will worship The Lord.

They had it right and for a long time I always looked at them as being supernaturally different because of it. But I’ve since learned that they truly were just people, ordinary people, like you and I, who were invited into a larger story full of excitement and glory. Somehow they caught a glimpse of that glory, and it settled things once and for all for them!

The Creative Order is the reason why my world has been turned right-side up! It’s the reason why I wrote The Awesome Manifesto. (which I would love for you to have for FREE, see below!) And it’s the single greatest reason why I have more peace and joy in the midst of circumstances than ever before!

The awesome news is that you can too!

Here’s some questions for you today:

Is your ability to rest and find joy being stolen? Are you not able to worship because of the circumstances you’re in? What does The Creative Order speak to you?

For me, engaging with you is everything! None of this makes any sense without it, so share your thoughts in the comments below, or email directly at josh [at] thejoshcollins [dot] com!

Posted on: June 12, 2013

The Top 6 Reasons Why There Should Be One Other Person Who Knows Everything About You

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Community

As a communicator, I have spent my entire life believing and living the importance of community. Even before I had the proper language or knew how to appropriately name what this groaning was in my inner-most being, I knew that life somehow was better when spent in the crucible of community.

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Photo Credit: Ferran. via Compfight cc

What the story of my life, thus far, has given me, as it pertains to community, are some pretty clear distinctions as to why it is so important. So I’ve put together the top 6 reasons why there should be at least one other person who knows everything about you.

1. We were created to be in relationship. This should be obvious but what’s surprising is the simple fact that our actions will always speak louder than our words. And our actions tell one another that we would often times rather be left alone, leaving each other alone, in order to not be bothered, or bother, as well as not be disturbed in our own way of thinking. It’s clear though, through the creation story that even God noticed and declared it is not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18).What the story of my life, thus far, has given me, as it pertains to community, are some pretty clear distinctions as to why it is so important. So I’ve put together the top 6 reasons why there should be at least one other person who knows everything about you.

2. Community provides us with the evidence that we are not alone. I don’t think I can quite describe the first “Aha” moment I had, when I realized I wasn’t the only one who struggled with one thing or another. Having the rush of peace sweep over me, forever convincing me that I’m no longer alone, is something everyone deserves to experience. C.S. Lewis describes this well in his work, The Four Loves.

“Friendship arises out of mere Companionship when two or more of the companions discover that they have in common some insight or interest or even taste which the others do not share and which, till that moment, each believed to be his own unique treasure (or burden). The typical expression of opening Friendship would be something like, “What? You too? I thought I was the only one.”
… It is when two such persons discover one another, when, whether with immense difficulties and semi-articulate fumblings or with what would seem to us amazing and elliptical speed, they share their vision – it is then that Friendship is born. And instantly they stand together in an immense solitude.”

3. Being known helps us stay grounded and avoid entitlements. This proves true over and over again. Even last night having a conversation with a friend, I was describing a situation and how I was feeling and he quickly replied that how I was reacting sounded like an old tape I was telling myself. When we expose ourselves and invite others to speak into our lives, we provide the right conditions for growth.

4. Corrects our vision, reframing our perspective to know we are not at the center of the universe. Perspective is such a powerful tool. Have you ever heard the phrase change the story, change your world? What and how we think absolutely shapes how we react to the world around us. And when we open ourselves up to community and invite relationship, we actually create the mechanisms that can help us change the stories we tell ourselves.

5. Because it heals and gives us peace. If you have ever participated in any kind of counseling or therapy you know this to be true. There is a direct correlation between vulnerability and the amount of healing and peace we experience. The beauty of what happens when we unburden ourselves with our secrets is we allow room for the peace and healing to take their place.

6. Life is most abundant and fulfilling when enjoyed through the context of community. Consider for a moment the opposite, if we held on tight to our secret selves, not trusting another human being, not loving another human being, what a sad place that would create. Once again we gain some tremendous wisdom from C.S. Lewis in The Four Loves.

“There is no safe investment. To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket – safe, dark, motionless, airless – it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.”

Here’s a question for you today.

Is there at least one other person who knows everything about you, every secret, every dream, every passion? If not perhaps it’s time there was.

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

Posted on: April 22, 2013

Why You May Not Be A Person Of Peace, But Should Be

Written by Josh Collins. Posted in Community

Have you ever stared down some specific fear about some specific goal you’re trying to accomplish and have finally been able to muster the courage to ask for help, only to receive a litany of excuses or rather no response at all?

Or perhaps you’re attempting to build some kind of team for an event or specific mission, and you just can’t seem to gain any traction. People just aren’t responding the way you’d hope they would.

Guess what, you’re not alone!

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Photo Credit: anhgemus via Compfight cc

I’ve seen this over and over again through out the years, whether it’s an artist or writer launching a new project or an NPO raising funds.

Recently I was sharing with a friend some of what I’m daring to launch, and I was surprised by his encouragement. I think that I had already began to believe he would just be another one of those voices to not respond, or to give an excuse as to why he didn’t have the time. But one of the things that has stuck with me the most, was his challenge to search and align myself with people of peace.

According to his definition, a person of peace is someone that jumps at the opportunity to serve and help, or to come along side you in any endeavor not asking what’s in it for them. People of peace tend to attract other people of peace. And that is a beautiful thing.

What I’ve began to notice is that a person of peace posses 3 basic qualities.

  1. They’re open to new things, not threatened by others.
  2. They invite relationship and community.
  3. They are generous in their support.

Because we live in a what’s in it for me culture, with pressure that says in order to appear successful, you must install gatekeepers at every outpost. Then Fear tells you that you have to protect what you have, and protect your “art.” This creates a gravitational pull that will always mislead you towards exclusion rather than inclusion.

The shift that I’ve noticed in me, as I have been thinking about this, is not just that I’m actively looking to align myself with people who exhibit these characteristics, but rather, I’m becoming one myself.

And really, isn’t that the point. Kind of reminds me of the old saying, “be a friend in order to make a friend.”

Here’s a question for you:

Do these characteristics describe you? Are you a person of peace? Do you know someone who is?

Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Posted on: April 18, 2013

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