Jesus’ desire is for us to rest with Him (to spend time with him) but also to rest in Him (to trust Him) . If Jesus was walking the earth today among you and I, his brand slogan for us would be “Work Hard, Play Hard and Rest Hard.” In other words, Jesus would want us to be intentional about how we live our lives (in work, fellowship and rest).
I believe each of us have themes in our life that need to be noticed. We often don’t see or recognize our themes simply because we aren’t listening and we don’t see the clues around us trying to get our attention. Recognizing your life theme is often subtle, but every once in awhile your theme may slap you upside the head to get your attention as a way to guide you to become who you are to become and do what you are suppose to do with your life. Much like a movie, or a play on stage or Broadway, we all have a character that we play and our character represents our authentic self. It represents our life role and the truth of ourselves.
I will give examples of life themes in just a second and will share my theme with you, but first I want you to answer these two questions as best as you can.
- What are the common experiences and situations in your life that often repeat?
- What experiences do you have that seem to share and support an overarching thought or idea and validate a course of action for your life?
“Life themes are repeatable, recognizable experiences communicating to you who you really are and what you are to do with your life.” – Anthony L. Fisher
A life theme is the idea or motivation that drives you throughout your life. It is the answer that you are always “searching” for. The answer to the question of “Why Am I Here”? In a nutshell, it is your search for the “Meaning of Life”.
Don’t be surprised or alarmed if you don’t recognize your life theme. Recognizing your life theme is a process and it’s going to be different for everyone. For me, recognizing my life theme came from a strong desire to “know”. I was enamored with finding an answer. I was seeking it out. If you’re like me, you seek to desire the meaning of your life and you inquire about it and put significant time researching, studying, testing and praying to find the answers.
Knowing your life theme can provide you with significant insight as to who you are, why you react the way you do to certain situations or why you even do particular things. Once you know what your life theme is, it’s much easier to work on attaining your goals and do the work you love to do and were meant to do.
Finding and recognizing your life theme is like you finding a hidden treasure. Your life theme guards you from pursuing activities and putting resources into areas that go contrary to what truly satisfies your soul and supports your efforts. Your life theme also guides you to seek opportunities to confidently move forward in areas that support your theme and truly satisfies your soul.
I’m a lover of books and movies. I read about 20 books a year and watch countless movies a year. Let’s use books and movies as our example on how finding your life theme works. Fiction books and movies are great to use as examples.
As you read your book you will want to identify the moral or theme of the story. What was the hero character (also known as the main character) trying to figure-out? What is the problem he/she is having? What are they trying to solve? Were they trying to figure out their purpose? How to do something? How to overcome their fears or live with courage? Let’s take the movie Lion King for example. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqQ2mQV5b0w
Symba (son), didn’t know who he truly was. He didn’t have clarity regarding his identity. He was afraid of stepping into Mufasa’s (his fathers) footsteps as King because he was fearful of his past, intimidated of the responsibilities of kingship and didn’t have the courage to face his demons and internal fears in order to be a great king. However, through time and often repeated circumstances, Nala (the lioness), Rafiki (the baboon) Timon (the meerkat), Pumbaa (the warthog) and Zazu (the hornbill) tried to show Symba that he was the rightful ruler of the kingdom. Symba received many clues pointing to his destiny throughout his childhood and young adult life and was guided by friends, supernatural appointments and experiences guiding him into his authentic rightfully owned position of purpose.
What about your life? Have you been trying to figure out who you are consciously or unconsciously? Are you beginning to listen and see the patterns of your life trying to guide you to your vocation and destiny?
As a young kid and throughout my 20’s, I’ve always prayed and asked God “Why am I here? What is my purpose and the role am I to play in the grand orchestra of humanity?” Through time, God began to reveal to me (through various life experiences) who I am and these experiences are the foundation of who I am today and what I do today.
My overall life themes are leadership, communications and coaching. What am I always trying to achieve? Naturally, I’m trying to achieve a lesson learned in order to create a successful and life-changing result in my life and in the lives of others. Leadership and coaching go hand-in-hand to me and communication is the vehicle that I have been blessed with to connect with people.
I was able to recognize my life theme by observing (through time) what I do, how I do it and how I tend to react to people and situations. For example, if I’m reading a book, I tend to highlight or underline in abundance areas that really resonate with me. Highlighting or underlining is my way to pinpoint what I need to review again so I can apply it to my life and in-turn help others apply it to their life. I’ve also recognized that I seem to always take a leadership approach to a situation and look at life through coachable opportunities and moments. I then ask myself how can I best express myself from what I’ve learned by applying my experience and expertise using various forms of communication. This is typically done through speaking, teaching, developing online courses, creating websites and applying graphic design techniques to my creative work. Often when I speak and coach, I’m speaking from an angle of how-to, improvement and problem solving.
Finding your life theme is different than finding your purpose. A life theme is overarching. A purpose can be and often is a little more specific. However, occasionally they can share similar expressions.
I hope what I shared with you today provides you a roadmap of how to recognize your life theme. If so, send me an email.
I believe in order for Paul to have been an effective apostle and preacher, God had to do some work within Paul. Work that only the Holy Spirit could perform. I believed that Paul had to go through a detox of mind, body and spirit before he began preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ, because everything he historically and traditionally taught and believed prior to accepting Jesus Christ as His Lord and Savior spoke to his belief in God’s favoritism towards the Jewish people above and beyond any other people or nation on earth. We must understand that the Jews in this day believed the law – the torah (the first five books of the bible) and they believed that they were privileged beyond any other nation because they were God’s chosen people based on God’s covenant with Abraham and his seed (the Jews).
In the book of John we read about another Pharisee who had an encounter with Jesus. His name was Nicodemus. Nicodemus was intrigued by Jesus and wanted to speak with him about his power and authority because he saw and experienced the miracles performed by Jesus. He knew Jesus was special and wanted to find out more for himself.
Every man wants to be a champion. He wants to be the top dog, numero uno, alpha male and head honcho. There’s something in our culture and DNA as men that draws us to climb to the top of the mountain and be the last one standing to receive the accolades, the clapping of hands, the handshakes and the pat on the back. I don’t know any man who doesn’t want or appreciate the status that comes with the position of standing above the rest. Would you agree?
Every man wants to be a champion. He wants to feel like he is on top of the world and can accomplish anything. Men will also do just about anything to protect his champion position and status so he can stroke his ego and pride just to feel like he is important and relevant. I don’t think it is too far fetched for me to say that most men hunger and thirst to be a champion, but the question I ask myself and also ask you is “what exactly is a champion”?
Many men believe that a champion is someone who wins. Someone who ranks first and attains the prize possession because he is the best of the best. He is the big dog. Some men say that winning and being a champion is the same thing and that the words are synonymous with each other. However, upon closer research and insight, the words do have definitions in which they differ.
My slogan is “Building Champion Men”. My mission is to lift men up by encouraging and teaching men how to build a winning attitude in the priority areas of life and how to become a champion man and live life like a champion man on a consistent basis.
So what is the definition of a champion according to me? A champion is a man who leads well. He is aware of who he is and the influence he has at home, work, business and in society. He is a man who is confident in who God made him to be. He does not settle for less, but he makes room in his life to prioritize the importance of being king, priest and leader. A champion is also a man who champions something. In other words, he has found his reason for his existence and is leading and advocating for something much bigger than himself. A champion is a man who has found something to fight for and has taken the necessary steps to improve the wellbeing of others.
I advocate for the leadership potential of men; especially men who are under the lordship of Jesus Christ and want to live the abundant life that John 10:10 speaks of. A life that is full of joy, peace, strength and crazy favor on his life and everything that is influenced by his presence.
So the questions I have for you is?
- What are you championing?
- Who are you championing?
- How are you championing?
Being a branded man requires that you answer these questions with clarity and conviction. Your clarity and conviction of who you are and what you are fighting for is what allows you to step into your purpose and live out your God-given assignment and calling for your life.
Okay, so what do we do?
First off. If you haven’t yet decided to become a champion and Branded Man, I encourage you to Subscribe to Branding Community so you can receive frequent updates from us. Updates that will challenge you, encourage you and grow you.
If you want to learn more about what a champion looks like, take time to look at the champions in your own life. Better yet, (if possible) spend time with them and ask them about their life stories that made them the leader and champion they are today. Most importantly, look at the life of Paul and Jesus Christ in the New Testament. They were great examples of what it meant to be true champions who advocated for people based on their purpose and calling.
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus –
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith –
2 Timothy 4:7
Today, my intention is to challenge you. You will be asked to look at your life and do an honest assessment of where you stand in your relationship with Jesus Christ. Today’s scripture is not an easy one, but it is necessary. It’s necessary for you and it’s necessary for me because each of us, everyday in our life, we are surrounded by things in our life that can easily influence us and distract us from following the Lord.
So today, I want to talk to you about temptation and deception. I want to talk to you about the people and things in your life that are disguised as good things, but can be bad things and potentially be a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Today, I want you to become aware of who and what has your attention and who you are giving your attention to. I want you to identify who you are listening to today. Is it the voice of God or something else.
Rise Up is a commitment to self. I created this declaration for myself with the intentions of being able to communicate the desire and cry in my own life. If you can relate to the statements below, I encourage you to make this your declaration for your life from this point moving forward.
Rise Up is the audacious commitment to yourself to live life in a passionate and purposeful way by exercising your gifts and abilities to the fullest and showcasing them most powerfully to the world.
Rise Up is your life’s statement that says “This is Who I Am”,”This is What I Do” and “This is What I Offer”.
Rise Up is the commitment to create a body of work with focus and intention so that people know who you are and what you stand for.
Rise Up is the understanding and personal conviction that you were placed upon this earth by God to create something, to communicate something, to execute something, to make a difference in someone’s life and to express that commitment in everything you say and do. Rise Up is turning your spark into a flame, your flame into a torch and your torch into a burning call to action for your life.
Rise Up is “You accepting you” and taking the initiative and responsibility to get your voice and message heard and make an impact in the world.
Rise Up is you not settling for less, but expecting more from yourself. It’s about leading yourself to the potential that lives within you.
Men, It’s time to RISE UP!
I want to start off today by talking about contracts. A contract is often a legal document highlighting the agreements in which you and the other party will agree to and abide by. There are many different types of contracts. Some are for business, some are for relationships, some are for strict legal guidelines and requirements while some are simply for fun. The reason I want to start off with contracts is because today’s topic is about a contract that I want you to think about because it directly relates to you. It’s a contract between you and Jesus Christ. The thing about contracts however, is that before you agree to the terms and sign them, you must always consider the cost. Today’s topic is “The Cost of Following Jesus Christ”.
One of the greatest gifts God has given us is His gift of patience. God’s patience is exhibited in our lives everyday and it’s important that we become aware of it because one day His patience will run out. Both Peter and Paul speak about this gift of patience given to them as Jesus Christ made himself known to them. In 2 Peter 3:9, Peter says “The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9 CSB. You see, Peter knows about patience all too well as he was the one who denied Jesus three times. Yet, a short time after, it was this same Peter that Jesus used mightily to build His earthly church.
What I like about the chapter and verse of John 9:1-11 is that God can take the common and ordinary things in our life (even clay from the ground) to get His point across and His purposes accomplished. The very thing that you and I are made of (clay) – when it’s in His hands, He applies His super to our natural. Clay is nothing special, it’s dirt from the ground, yet in the hands of God, it becomes anointed. It becomes anointed because of He who holds it, not because we are special, but because God is the Potter. Clay was the application used on this man’s eyes, but his obedience to go to the pool and wash as Jesus said assisted with his healing.
There comes a point in time in a man’s life where he must decide on the type of man he wants to be.
There also comes a point in time in a man’s life where he must decide if he is going to pursue and live out the call that God has put in his heart or settle for mediocre living, which is living without faith and without a strategy.
Every believing man has experienced the tug of war of being obedient to the call of Christ or pursuing his own way and his own actions.
The calling on our life as Godly men is great. We are to be awesome husbands and fathers, obedient kings and priests in our homes, leaders in our vocations and leaders as business owners and entrepreneurs. Everything we do is established by how we see ourselves and how we see our King.
Many of you right now are stuck in your mind between your job and your purpose. You’re trying to determine what’s more important in your life and I’m here to tell you that your purpose is priority. Now here me out, I’m not saying that your job is not important. As a matter of fact, it’s very important and you need to have one to the best of your ability. But think about this, Jesus was a carpenter, Matthew was a tax collector. Peter, Andrew and John were fisherman, but at a point in time Jesus called them to follow Him and told them they would become Fishers of Men. It was at this time that they received their call and purpose for their life. Who revealed it to them? Jesus did.
Here is the great thing about your life’s call and purpose. It is not what you say it is. It’s what God says it is. You don’t need to fulfill it alone. You are not required to. You are not called to force things to happen in your life as you cannot determine the results and success of your efforts. You are required to trust God and allow Him to reveal His purpose for you. You simply need to be willing, available and obedient to do what God is telling you and will continue to tell you throughout your life. You must be willing and available to allow the Lord to use you. And you must be obedient – to follow through on His direction for your life.
Every man must come to the realization of who he is, why he exists and his purpose on earth. You my friend, have a purpose. Your purpose can only come from the creator of heaven and earth. The creator who formed you and knows everything about you before you were ever born. The creator who has given you specific gifts, talents, abilities with unique experiences and a unique personality all your own. Your existence is not an accident. You are here on this earth to make a difference and to solve a problem in someone’s life. You are the solution to a need. It’s time to give God space in your life for the first time or once again. It’s time to acknowledge God in your life. It’s time to Rise Up and live life as if you have a purpose. Give yourself a chance. Give God a chance and make a decision to achieve greatness by following the Lord who Will Provide and reveal Himself to you.