From Entrepreneurial Failure to Victory in Surrender: HV for Real Post #3

Being an entrepreneur is often something that sounds glamorous especially when you've been inspired by successful ones in your life. I certainly have! Sometimes I find myself putting them  on a pedestal. You know that old comparing my insides to their outsides game?  Yeah, you know the one. Even though our gifts, talents, resources and experiences are completely different - somehow we can compare our own work as an entrepreneur to the success of another who looks like they've got it together. We literally take each step of our work, even though it may not seem majorly profitable like the outside world like to see it, and make it into a pea. Somehow I don't think God loves it when we do that, cause he loves us.

Let me tell you a little more. The first year after my Dad passed, I wrote a book.

The year before my Dad died I developed a program where I got to use my faith to lead an international franchise in health and fitness to their Healthy Voice (cool stuff - not perfect though.)

The year after he died, I wrote a book for that audience and others who wanted to hear my testimony.

The second year after he died, I spent my time (in real life) planning a wedding, and (in my work life) planning where this business is going to go.

Here's the shocker - it didn't all go into a pretty little blue box and get DONE so the rest of the world could see how perfect and pretty my business is.

In fact, ask me straight up and I'll tell you straight up - it has BEEN a journey. It's been a journey of discovering where this will go and ultimately, step by step, day by day where GOD wants it to go - not ME. That discovery journey has had a loud, "I'm not doing enough. Healthy Voice should be further," voice. I know you get it. It doesn't matter what you are dealing with. It's not a nice voice, because it wants to take your feeling of "not good enough" and beat you over the head with it. I've had to harness that voice of God that says this:

YOU ARE EXACTLY WHERE YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE. I TAKE YOUR NOT GOOD ENOUGH BECAUSE IT'S MINE. YOU JUST GIVE ME THE BEST YOU'VE GOT.

That sure shuts that other voice up, doesn't it?___

See, although Healthy Voice may seem like some business that's got it all together, that's NOT what's going on behind the scenes. Are there a ton of messages to share? Yes, and as you can see, I'm sharing them. But I'm one person with a pretty full life. I take it a day at a time.

Now I'm realizing how simple it is - just sharing the REAL message of the Healthy Voice, not how I want it to look.  In the process,  I'm doing everything I can to focus on God and shut out that voice that says, "Not Good enough,"

I'm believing in the one that says, "You got this. I got this. Just keep going. Love, God."

Think about it with your weight. Does it feel better to try and lose every pound you can before you really live? Or does it feel better just to live now and get healthy as you walk? 

___

Here's the bottom line.

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and that is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.
— Ephesians 2:8 NIV
And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.
— Romans 11:6, NIV

How are these passages relevant to failed entrepreneurship?

Because for a long time, my religious upbringing made me believe I had to WORK for it. I had to EARN my way into heaven, or to be loved by God. I thought along the lines of, "If I just got something right by my own works, or willpower or whatever - then I could get it right."

But these two passages have been life changers for me, because they remind me that I didn't get saved by works. I didn't earn my ticket to a relationship with Christ. He died on a cross so that I could be saved by HIS grace. He gave me my sins and struggles so that I could give them to HIM. Yes, that means if I fail at something on my OWN doing? God can take my fails and make them epic victories. How cool is that? 

But that passage also means he doesn't want me to sit around and do nothing. He wants me to take his message through my work and share it with the world. That means there is a balance between faith and works. But now I know that works doesn't GET me "better" faith. By faith, I'm given the spiritual power and strength to do his WORKS in the world. Again, that doesn't mean, "Oh okay God, then I'll just wait till you tell me what to do (and do whatever I want while I do it."

No that means LISTEN for his direction. Pray for his will and guidance in your life. Then he will show you his most pleasing and perfect will. Grace may not make sense if you haven't surrendered. But let me tell you, when you do, you realize how much of a gift grace really is, I mean, can't even put it into words. But you've got to GIVE it to him first, then seek his guidance in taking care of the rest . But a little tidbit? It's not gonna come in some big master plan of, "Hey, here's how I want you to live your life. I got it written out in a blueprint." NO!

In the book of James, it talks about how faith without works is dead. I used to think that validated that the truth that it's all about works. But now I know that I can't rest on my faith, I've got to ACT on it and God will show up as I continue to do that.

Read the passage:

Dear friends, do you think you’ll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved and say, “Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!” and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup—where does that get you? Isn’t it obvious that God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense?

I can already hear one of you agreeing by saying, “Sounds good. You take care of the faith department, I’ll handle the works department.”

Not so fast. You can no more show me your works apart from your faith than I can show you my faith apart from my works. Faith and works, works and faith, fit together hand in glove.
— James 2: 14-18, The Message

FAITH IS ACTION. FAITH REQUIRES ACTION. ONE STEP AT A TIME. ONE DAY AT A TIME. FOR GOD'S GLORY, NOT OUR OWN. 

I don't know how this blog spoke to you, but I do know that if you receive God's grace you CAN find peace through every storm of life, even the ones the world might think are "supposed to" be glamorous.

___

This entire post, I've thought of the song, "Healing Begins" by Tenth Avenue North. I'm going to share with you three video versions of the song. One is the original with the band, another is an unofficial one that I wanted to post because I think it is a powerful demonstration of personal struggle, and the last one is one of victory.

It's got nothing to do really with Entrepreneurship, but it's a moment that I surrendered and made my faith public.  This video shows me that it's ALWAYS him and that it IS by grace I have been saved so no matter what goes on in my REAL life, HE'S in charge because I gave him my life.

For those who might not understand it because you were baptized as a kid and wonder why you would do it again - I can tell you THIS is where I made it my choice to put my life in his hands. This is a literal example of putting my faith into action and I cherish the moment.  If you want to see the exact moment, go to the 1:00 mark. But the whole video is a grand testimony of God's love.