I met with the board of directors for a local youth center last night, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. Their group exists to support, encourage and mentor the youth in their community. This is based out of the foundational love of Jesus and their selfless desire to make a positive difference in lives around them. They want to see these kids succeed in basic things- relationships, school, etc., but their vision is bigger than just that. Ultimately the impact of their time and love has the power to shape and change destiny- and not just the destiny of that individual child, but everyone that child will ever meet. So now I’m thinking about how this should be my personal desire lived out across the board in my life. I should be thinking about impacting the lives of those around me in a personally tangible ways every day. And it’s not like I’m saying that I’ve never given that a thought before- I certainly desire to be those things in the life of my family and close friends; my heart, after all, is that of an encourager. But what I’m saying is- what about everyone else? What about my “friends” on Facebook or people I casually run into at school, sports, etc? How is God calling me to make a positive difference in their lives? I guess the base level question is, will I choose to give myself to that? Here is what I know from my own life: 1 word of encouragement or belief can make all the difference between giving up and pressing forward. I know I touched on the concept of dreams the other day, but I think I need to revisit it for a couple minutes. This blog is one of those dreams I’ve had for awhile and never actively pursued. I’ve only been committed to it for 3 days, but it’s been amazing! I’m loving the ability to express what stirring inside of me, and apparently there are others who like it too…that’s a win/win situation! I can’t tell you how many people have encouraged me to write in the past couple years, and the credit for what happens here partly belongs to each of them. I’m sure that one day God is going to remind them of the power of their spoken words and the way that it brought much fruit in my life; by pushing me towards something I couldn’t reach on my own! So I guess I want to know- what’s your dream? What’s the thing that’s stirring inside of you, desperately wanting to come out, that hasn’t yet? It doesn’t have to be a blog, but it could be. It might be something that you want for your family or for yourself. I’m not talking about materialistic things, but more like the expressions of your heart. It might be something you’ve wanted to try for years (like music or art) or something that just popped into your mind yesterday. Everybody has a dream. Think about the song in the movie Tangled, “I’ve Got a Dream”. Rapunzel is singing about the dream she has inside and it sparks the release of dream declarations all around her- some of the most unusual things, from some of the most unusual people! (I could go down a whole rabbit trail about that movie, but I’ll save that for another day. I don’t watch a lot of tv, but God really stirs and speaks to me through “kid movies”.) I want to be an encourager who reaches outside of myself to encourage others to reach their dreams and I want you to join me in that! What if we each spoke 1 encouraging word of destiny over someone each day…and what if they were inspired to do the same thing? What would our community, our state, our country, our world, look like if it was filled with people who were motivated to see outside themselves and into the sometimes mysterious beauty in the people around them? It’s probably not even that hard or time/thought consuming. All it really requires is for me to be on the look out for opportunity to encourage, if I’m looking then I’m sure to find it! I want to be a cheer leader 🙂 and I believe, whole heartedly that Jesus is cheering too. Romans 8:34 tells us that Jesus is at the right hand of the Father, interceding for us! If my call is “to be about my Father’s business” then I should be interceding too…both in prayer and out loud! I’d love to hear your dreams so I can cheer you on, I’ll be listening for your whisper.