Monday, March 23, 2009

Feed Your Fire

I had a good talk with Cole Choken, an old friend from my OG days this weekend. Cole is an amazing guy; he used to weigh 320 pounds and now's he's dropped over a hundred of that and is in the best shape of his life. Cole ran from Calgary to Winnipeg a year ago and is training to leave in December on a much longer run; Mexico city along the eastern seaboard of the USA & Canada and then back home to Winnipeg. He's raising money for diabetes, a disease that is very prevalent in Native Canadians (and one that has affected many people in his family as well). He's also just a really good guy.

Cole is a good study in motivation. What is his secret? While talking to him on the phone he mentioned how he is super excited about visiting two places on his upcoming big run. The first is Thunder Bay where the Terry Fox statue is located. Terry Fox is one of Cole's heroes. The other place is Philedelphia where the famous "Rocky Stairs" are located. Apparently when Cole was a boy, he lived with his Dad and they only owned two movies. One of these was one of the Rocky movies (I can't remember if it was 1 or 2) and he and his Dad used to watch that movie once every two days. Once every two days! That's a lot of times to watch an extremely motivating movie. I believe Cole was primed by this experience to be ready to accept the challenge to change his life when the time came. And when he chose to change - well, he knew where to go to find motivation to follow through.

Cole knows how to motivate himself and that is what separates him from others with lofty intentions. He is continually feeding himself motivation. He listens to inspiring music. He watches inspiring movies. He continually tells everyone what he is planning to do, inviting them to be a part of his journey with him (brings others onto his "team" and gains accountability at the same time). Who is responsible for motivating us, for inspiring us? We are. Or more specifically, you are.

Billy Hybels, pastor of Willow Creek was once asked why he takes speaking engagements in small churches that are celebrating momentous events. After all, he's a busy guy and he has "bigger fish to fry" as the saying goes. The explanation he gave is that when he attends such an event, he actually gets more out of it then his audience. Hybels find those kind of celebratory events inspiring and motivating - they get him hyped, engaged, and on fire for the local church. He comes back from such an event energized and hyped to see the church prevail. So he speaks at these events not just because it's a good thing to do, but because he needs it to stay motivated in his ministry. It's not a option for him. Like Cole, he knows what he need to do to stay motivated. Do you? And if so, are you making the time for it? I believe that discovering/knowing what fires you and making time to do it, is the single most effective thing we can do to fulfill the dreams and goals that God puts in our hearts. It's not a substitution for discipline, rather it is the foundation of it - the catalyst for it. What step do you need to take to feed your motivation/inspiration fires this week? And what's stopping you?

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