Q: What inspired you to write Something Greater?
A: I read a speech that originates back to 1869, when a man named Russel Conwell heard it from an Arab guide while traveling along the Euphrates River in the Middle East. The story inspired Conwell so much, that he began sharing it with others. Every day we make decisions about how we will live our lives, but far too often we are too quick to look “out there somewhere” for answers when everything we need is right where God has planted us. The notion that the grass is greener out there is as false a notion. Like Conwell, I wanted to inspire others to grow in what God has for them.
Q: Why is it a big problem when people undervalue where God has placed them?
A: It’s easier to imagine what could be than it is to put down roots. And we can get bored with what we see every day if we don’t stay connected to the Lord through His Word, prayer, and the Church.
Q: How important is it that we understand the difference between God’s timing and our own?
A: Victory was the promise for the nation of Israel. It is the same promise for you today. God will get you through a storm and uncover hidden potential. But there is this matter of timing. Notice how it unfolds in Scripture: little by little. It is not instant because God is deliberate about it. Victory will come little by little. So stay right where you are. Stay where God has you. And get anchored right to Jesus Christ, the rock of our salvation. As uncomfortable and stormy as it is, He is bringing you into freedom little by little.
Q: What is the Power of Now?
A: Yesterday is over. The past is past and it’s done. You will never get it back. But if you allow it, that thief will steal the joy of today by getting you to live in the shame, pain, or even the success of yesterday. You are living where God wants you.
If the thief of yesterday fails in stealing your joy, the thief of someday will try and take it. When you fixate on the future – what might or might not happen – you are failing to realize the power of now. The psalmist wrote: “This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24). You cannot do anything about your past, but you can rewrite the rest of your life.
Q: How does God use our trials to sharpen and prepare us on the journey of fulfilling our purpose?
A: There will always be difficult times as long as we are on Earth, but trials are not the time to pull up roots and run – pulling up roots can kill the tree, and decisions made in difficult times are made in haste. Difficult seasons are the breeding ground for growth and advancement the same way weather and wind make a tree stronger.
Q: What must we do to conquer the voice in our head that gets so loud during difficult seasons?
A: Whether you get bitter at people or bitter at God, it is easy to let a root of bitterness take you down. You decide how your spiritual cells activate and grow (or not). Choose not to let those situations grow a root of bitterness deep in your soul. When you are tempted to allow bitterness to take up space, be intentional. Pray aloud, “God, I know what was sent could make me bitter, but today I choose to trust You.”
Q: Tell us about the importance of being planted, especially in trying times.
A: The enemy would love nothing more than for you to back up right now instead of staying put and discovering your true potential. He wants you to give up. He wants you to move from the place or the people to whom God has called you. He wants you to think your situation is impossible. Know that God is faithful to complete what He started (Philippians 1:6). He will finish the work that He has started in your life.
Q: In your book, you talk about thanking God for the doors He didn’t open. Why is that important?
A: Often, when God shuts a door, it is for our protection. I can’t tell you how many doors I would have kicked in, thinking I was supposed to do something that in reality was not part of God’s plan. If something doesn’t work out after you have prayed about it, guess what? God just shut a door. Not to punish you or hurt you, but to protect you.
Q: Tell us about the importance of being anchored.
A: In order for us to stay where God has called us, we have to get anchored right where we are. If you are not properly anchored, you will drift too much. Get anchored right to Jesus Christ, the rock of our salvation. As uncomfortable and stormy as it is, He is bringing you into freedom little by little.
Q: When you are facing a difficult situation, it’s easy to give into negative thinking. How is waiting in expectation the antidote for that?
A: The power of expectation jumps out of Acts 3. Here we learn about a man who was lame since birth. He was brought to the Temple daily to beg for alms. On this particular day, he encountered Peter and John. I have heard a lot of sermons preached saying that what happened next was dependent upon Peter and John, who saw the man and said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk” (verse 6). But I believe that man’s heartfelt expectation was the most important ingredient in the miracle. Expectation is the breeding ground for miracles. Your greatest miracles are not behind you. So don’t look back – look ahead. Understand that something is going to happen that you have not yet seen. You’ve got to keep going. You’ve got to get on your tiptoes with a spirit of expectation!
Q: Tell us about some of the wells we must dig in our life and why they’re important.
A: In the bible, Abraham had built wells for himself and his family. The Middle Eastern climate is hot and dry. Digging wells was hard, putting it mildly. You are going to uncover the secret to revival in your family by digging up some buried wells. Here are four wells you need to dig to find God’s best for you, for your family and for generations to come:
- The well of sacrifice
- The well of discipline
- The well of quality time
- The well of faithfulness
Q: What is the most important message you hope people take away from reading your book Something Greater?
A: Stay where God has planted you. Put down roots and grow.
Q: Can you share an example of someone in the Bible who chose to settle for less than God’s best for their lives?
A: When Moses sent the twelve spies to check out the Promised Land, he asked them to bring back some fruit. The spies brought back grapes the size of watermelons. What a picture! But the spies didn’t capture that image. Instead, they came back talking about the size of the giants. That is the picture they focused on. They should have come back seeing the picture of the fertile land God had promised them.
Q: What is the biggest lie people believe about their purpose and how does that keep them from fulfilling their God-given destiny?
A: Trusting only what you “see.” It’s easy to lose your joy when you cannot see good things where God has called you to stay. It’s human nature. When we get in a valley, the enemy wants to dry up our joy. But I refuse to let a sinner have more fun in his sin than I am going to have in my righteousness through Christ Jesus! Do not let the devil dry you up. Do not become insecure or discouraged just because your circumstances look different than what you believe God has promised you. Instead, stir up your joy. If the hand of the Lord takes you into a low place, remember that the joy of the Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10). Strengthen yourself in Him when you are in a valley. Pray. Meditate on His Word.
Q: What is the most valuable lesson God has taught you about fulfilling your destiny?
A: Life is hard. Trials sway us. Problems come and go. The struggle is real. But so is Heaven. This should fill us with joy and hope. No matter what happens in this life, those who believe in Jesus will receive God’s ultimate blessing, His best gift for us—eternal life with Him in Heaven.