Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

20 October 2013

All I've ever really wanted to do

As of October 1st... I've made what some call a "career change." It's not, however, a totally accurate description of what I've done. The word career means: 
An occupation undertaken for a significant period of a person's life and with opportunities for progress. - Career
I have been "doing" broadcasting for 20 years while making it my family's primary source of income for 15 years.  I've been blessed to have hosted a nationally broadcasted live TV talk show, started a radio station from scratch, done darn near every job that exists in radio... spending the final 9 years specializing in creative writing. This advertising season culminated by winning the National 2013 Crystal Award for the 2nd best radio campaign across Canada.

This has certainly been an occupation that I've undertaken for a significant period of my life... but the "opportunities for progress" part is where I got stuck.  Allow me to clarify and further define.  The word progress means:

Forward or onward movement towards a destination. - Progress
"Progress" speaks to destiny.  And "forward movement" could no longer be found without change.
I found Jesus for real... for ME... as a 19 year old.   I was raised in the church and had dangled my toes in the waters of Christendom on a few occasions but I'd never taken the plunge.  Spiritual inertia doesn't do a man good.  My "conversion" was powerful.  I don't know what it feels like for everyone, but for me, it was like the scene in the Wizard of Oz where Dorothy is all of a sudden enveloped by awe and Technicolor after living life simply seeing a whole lotta bland ole black and white Kansas all her life. I distinctively remember the moment where the trees looked greener and the sky (literally all of a sudden) looked a scalding bright blue.  It was as if a scrim had been lifted from my eyes, soul and spirit. It felt like I was flying. It was... REMARKABLE. 
Worthy of attention; striking. - Remarkable
I had no frame of reference for this. Nothing had ever happened even in the vicinity of comparably powerful. I knew that this God was the most worthy of places to invest my life into.  I went to my pastor and told him that, whatever it meant, I was IN.  Others HAD to know and experience what had just happened to me. It was too good to hoard to myself.  He suggested that I go away to Bible College and train to be a pastor.  I had many desirable qualities.  I could speak with authority. I had passion.  I was funny and engaging.  I thought it was a swimming idea.  

But the more I prayed about it... the more I felt uncomfortable with it.  The more I asked God, the clearer it was that He was leading me to Niagara College to learn about broadcasting.  I had been doing broadcasting my whole life.  I used to imitate Tom Cheek, calling 1986 Blue Jay games into my tape recorder.  I was a regular guest on a local talk show and had even shot a couple of half hour "Dave Carrol Show's."  So I was no stranger to broadcasting... and frankly... I'm good at it.  But I wondered if God knew what He was doing.  Maybe He hadn't heard me.  I WANTED to SERVE Him with my life and share Him with EVERYONE! 

18 years of broadcasting and 18 years of non-full-time ministry later... God has taught me many things.  He let me learn under great men from Africa, Canada, The Philippines and America too.  In 18 years of doing ministry, not even as my profession I feel like I've been beyond blessed to work with the people I have, seen some of the things I've seen... and have the dreams, friends and team I do around me to make the future bright.
God also has cultivated my desires and refined my "destination."  He gave me the dream of a seeing a CITY transformed.  It's what drives me onward. For 13 years, its he reason why I've done every single thing I've done.  My time in broadcasting facilitated it all.  It also facilitated my wife's dream of being a stay at home Mom while our kids were young. And I'm BEYOND thankful for it. For 10 years of doing Freedom House, I've been working basically two full time jobs... and it was simply TIME for a "career change" of sorts.  

Although... after I resigned, when my radio co-workers asked me when I started my "new job" I told them, "Ten years ago; before I started here." 

For my life, my ministry, my family and my church to progress towards it's destination.... things could not remain the same.  And so for the first time in many years, my days are also being spent developing Freedom House, The Kindness Project... and seeing Brantford transformed into a holistically prosperous city.

It's all I've ever really wanted to do.  But I'll say this.  Doing it as a paid profession, in itself, is not how its done.  It's done with obedience.  It happened for 18 years by NOT doing it with my days.  That was God's plan.  His PERFECT plan.  And if that had continued to be his plan, it would have been my responsibility to say yes with the same fervor that I did the day I went to my pastor as a 19 year old to offer my life to God.  

Obedience, in itself, IS success.

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