Day 8: Say “Yes” to Your Dream

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A dream is a goal that can be reached only with God’s help.

What is the difference in a dream and a goal? I recently read an article demonstrating ten differences between a dream and a goal. I agree with the basis of the article, but I soon realized that my definition of a dream is different than the author’s. To me a dream is simply “a spiritualized goal.”  When we use the word “dream,” we are often referring to something that can’t happen. It’s just a dream. That’s all well and good except for the verse that tells us that “All things are possible with God,” Matthew 19:26 tells me that my dream is possible.

I definitely believe in goal setting, but using the word, “dream” takes the limits off and brings God into the picture. We could use the term dream/goal to better express what I am talking about. Using the word goal to describe my dream sounds like it is within my realm of control. Setting a goal we believe we can accomplish is lowering the bar. Setting a goal we can only accomplish with God’s help is raising the bar. For lack of a better word, I call that a “dream.”

For the rest of the series, please keep in mind that when I use the word “dream,” I am referring to a goal that can be reached with God’s help. Now that you understand the meaning of dream, it’s time to define your dream. You might want to start with a list of:

  • all the things you want to do or be
  • all the things you have ever wanted to do or be,
  • all the things you think you might want to do or be.

Then as you read the list, note which ones make your pulse quicken and your spirit get excited. Choose one. Now your’re ready for step 2.

Keep in mind when you define your dream/goal, there are no rules. It can be as “small” as cleaning out a closet or as “big” as a trip to Bora Bora. You don’t have to believe that You can do it, you just have to want it. Step 2 will help you decide if you should want it, and you will find out what God thinks about it.

Define your dream. You know what mine is, I would love to hear yours. Remember it can be small or large. No rules. You’re not limited to one dream in your lifetime. After accomplishing one with God’s help, He’ll have a lot more ideas for you. Of that you can be sure.

Real Life Examples of Dreams (from people I know) :

  • Go to Bora Bora
  • Open a Worship Center
  • Achieve financial prosperity
  • Meet and marry the woman/man of my dreams
  • Organize a house
  • Have a clean house
  • Clean out a closet
  • Lose weight
  • Achieve a fitness goal
  • Get a job they love
  • See a loved one saved
  • Publish a Book

Now it’s time for me to work on my book! Blessings to all as you dream!

More about step 2 on Day 9. To catch up with my 31 Days to Publish My Book Series, look for the series list to the right or below or click here. Thanks for being a apart of my journey.

My favorite 31 Days to Write post for today was from Coddled Little Life and it is called, “Say Yes to the Sprinkler!” It’s great insight for moms and others. And yes, I borrowed from her title because it fit.

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Day 7: Time to Rest

31button8I have great news for you. There is only one more step to add to the list of Vital Steps to fulfill your dream, and I will happily give that to you in a few days. The list of Practical Steps will continue to grow as I discover them along the way. Since this is the seventh day of the 31 Days to Write Challenge, I am going to rest this evening instead of diligently preparing a post for today.

Over the next few days, I will be focusing my available time and attention toward final preparations of the manuscript. Only then can I take the next steps toward publication. While you are waiting for me, (I hope you are.) I will post a scripture or encouraging word or a reminder of the steps we have listed so far. Enjoy your day.

Here’s a quick reminder of the Vital Steps:

Define your dream, pray over your dream, live your dream through picturing, and be sure to ask the Holy Spirit for His help.

This is not step five, but take some time to rest for yourself.

In case you missed any of the previous days of 31 Days to Publish My Book, there’s a convenient list for you in the sidebar at the top. I recommend that you skip Day 2 because it’s too long, but I kind of like the way the others turned out. I hope you find something meaningful for you.

Have a wonderful day!

 

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Day 6: Help for Your Dream

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“You weren’t planning on doing this without Him, were you?”

This morning I read from Jesus Calling by Sara Young. Today’s entry included these words:

“Though the Holy Spirit is infinite, He deigns to be your Helper. He is always ready to offer assistance; all you need to do is ask. When the path before you looks easy and straight forward, you may be tempted to go it alone instead of relying on Me. This is when you are in the greatest danger of stumbling. Ask My Spirit to help you as you go each step of the way. Never neglect this glorious Source of strength within you.”

When I asked in prayer if I should include a step on asking the Holy Spirit for help, I felt that I heard the answer,

“You weren’t planning on doing this without Him were you?”

Well, no. I just hadn’t really thought about it. I thought that praying sort of covered it whether I mentioned the Holy Spirit specifically or not. As I meditated on this a bit further and actually asked the Holy Spirit for help as Sara suggested, I realized that it was vitally important that the Holy Spirit be involved in every step of fulfilling my dream. He is our helper.

Earlier in the day, I had made a mental note to add an item to my Practical Steps. Grammarly is a proofreading tool designed to facilitate compliance with over 250 grammar rules. I know it will save me a great deal of time and it will make my message much clearer. When I apply Grammarly to my manuscript, it will identify every missing comma, every dangling participle, every misspelled word, and even random thoughts that do not make sense. Grammarly will help me perfect my manuscript so that it communicates my message in a manner that is easily understood by others. Ingeniously, the Holy Spirit will work in our lives in much the same way

By asking the Holy Spirit for help, you are running yourself through the “spell-checker, the rule breaker.” He will offer suggestions for corrections in your attitudes, motives, and actions. Just like in Grammarly, you are given the choice to “change” or to “ignore.” By accepting the changes offered, you are yielding to the Holy Spirit’s guidance in your life. Eventually, He will  bring you to the point where you can respond to His voice as easily as a touch of a keyboard. All of your thoughts, words, and actions will line up with His vision of you. You are going to be His perfect manuscript as you yield your dream to His corrections.

Practical Steps:

1. Write your book.

2. Prepare your content.

3. Begin revisions.

4. Ask questions.

  • What is CreateSpace, and should I use it?
  • How much money does it cost to self-publish?
  • What is the best font to use for publication?

5. Get a CreateSpace account.

6. Order and read eBooks.

7. Download Grammarly and use it to correct your manuscript.

Vital Steps.

1. Define your dream.

2. Pray over your dream.

3. Live the dream through picturing the end result.

4. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you.

I hope you are enjoying seeing the lists grow. If you have any suggestions for the lists, feel free to share. If you’d like specific prayer for your dream, feel free to share that as well. In the meantime, here is my prayer for you:

Lord, please bless each one who is reading this. Please awaken the dream that you have placed in their heart. It might be a dream for this week or for a lifetime, but help them to see it as a seed that you want to water and nurture. You, Holy Spirit will guide them every step of the way and will cause their dream to produce fruit for Your kingdom.  Thank you so much for loving each one as your unique creation and help us to realize who we are in You. In Jesus name, Amen.

To the right of this post, you can click on any of the articles for my series, Publish My Book in 31 Days. The first one gives an introduction to the series. You can also find out what 31 Days to Write is all about by clicking here. You will find a list of over 2000 writers, all pouring their heart into the topic they have chosen to write about every day in October. Here’s my favorite today:

God is in the Dumpster by Natalie 

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Day 5: Live Your Dream

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I feel like a duck. Each evening I am swimming along putting words together for 31 Days to Write, yet under the water’s surface my feet are busily working as I continue to research the hows of self-publishing I add to my list of questions and work with my content, choosing what to use and editing what I have.

I must not lose sight of the Vital Steps. My dream has been defined, and each day I spend at least ten minutes in prayer about my dream. I find myself always praying for your dreams as well. Is your dream defined?

I am ready to give you Vital Step 3:

Live the dream through picturing.

and Practical Step 6 which goes hand in hand With VS3:.

Order and read eBooks.

Can you picture readers from around the world clicking on your book title on Amazon.com? After they authorize a payment of $.99 to $2.99, your book is downloaded to their device. They can instantly begin reading your book. Or perhaps after clicking on your book title, your paperback book is placed in the mail by Amazon, and in a few days it arrives in their mailbox. Can you see them anxiously ripping into the package and holding your book in their hands?

People are going to buy your book.

People are going to benefit when your dream is accomplished.

Can you see it happening?

Practical Step 6 for publishing my book is to buy and read eBooks. Making that payment does much more for you than just accessing some good reading material. It accesses the belief that this can and will happen for you.

Reading the books you have chosen will do more for you than providing you with pleasant hours of reading. It will help you picture the end result of having published your book. Just like you are reading the book you ordered, people will be reading yours.

In addition to reading the eBook you have ordered, you can learn a great deal from examining the book from a publisher’s viewpoint. You can see the page layout, the chapter divisions, the way words flow into sentences, paragraphs, and pages. You will learn so much from buying and reading eBooks. Determine a small amount to spend on your dream. You are investing in your dream, and you are putting a smile on some author’s face somewhere in the world. Before very long, you will have a smile of your own every time you learn one of your books has been purchased.

The Practical Steps toward publication we have so far are:

1. Write your book.

2. Prepare your content.

3. Begin revisions.

4. Ask questions.

  • What is CreateSpace, and should I use it?
  • How much money does it cost to self-publish?
  • What is the best font to use for publication?

5. Get a CreateSpace account.

6. Order and read eBooks.

Vital Steps.

1. Define your dream.

2. Pray over your dream.

3. Live the dream through picturing the end result.

Do you have an eBook you have published? I’m in the market for a few!

If you’re looking for one, here are two I recommend. Give them a try if you like.

Broken by Anne Peterson

30 Days to a More Powerful Life by Joe Dalio

Live the dream!

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Day 4: Wake Up , Dream!

 

I want to write a book!

I am going to publish a book!

I am publishing a book.

31button8I spoke this first sentence, aloud probably around 1977. Larry and I lived in a small house on Longview Drive. We read self-help and Christian inspirational books for at least fifteen minutes every night before going to bed. This reading changed our lives for the better. We had been told:

The difference in you now and five years from now is the books your read and the people you associate with.

I wanted to make a difference. I wanted to fix things. I wanted to solve problems. I wanted to encourage people. i wanted to point people to the Ultimate Answer to their every need, Jesus Christ. I still want these things, and I’m ready to keep walking toward that dream through publishing my book.

By reading this, you are walking that journey with me. I hope you will be inspired to take the next step in fulfilling your dream.

As you continue the journey with me, you will read what I’ve learned through research and asking questions that will guide me through the steps toward publication. I’ll also keep reminding you of steps you can take to nurture the dream you have. By the end of the 31 Day Challenge, we should have a nice list of steps to follow toward fulfilling any dream and a specific list of steps to follow toward publishing your book. You’ll also be able to get your hands on a copy of Dare to Be Happy for the first time ever. That is my hope and my faith.

Vital Steps:

Define your dream.

Pray over your dream.

Have you done these two steps yet? I dare say, nothing will really happen until you do. Over these past 4 days, I have spent time in prayer over my dream. I have prayed for your dreams too. I encourage you to look inside of yourself and see what God has placed there. What do you want? Don’t hide it or run from it or discount it, and don’t think that it is impossible.

When you step out to do something “impossible,” God steps in to make it possible.

I am praying that your dream will be awakened in you. Yours eyes are going to pop open, and you are going to realize that the thing you want, the thing that makes your smile may very well be God’s dream for you. You are going to be so excited when He leads you into receiving the fulfillment of your dream. And the most incredible fruit of your dream being fulfilled is that it will spread out like a flood and positively affect the lives of others. That’s the way our God works. He will take your loaves and fishes and feed thousands! Define your dream and pray over your dream. In the next few days, we’ll explore more exciting steps to take toward your dream!

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Day 3: Create Space

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“I have done ten books so far and the cost has been zero.”

This is the sentence that my friend, Anne emailed to me in answer to my question, “How much will it cost me to publish my book? When I began my research toward publication, I had not counted the cost at first. It had not occurred to me that it could be costly to publish, but I began to wonder if I had been naive. I was already hearing reasons why this could not be done, and “It costs too much!” was added to the list.

When Anne emailed me the answer to my question I knew I was on the right track. More research into CreateSpace revealed that this was most likely the way to go so I took the advised step.

I created my CreateSpace account!

The best part was they wanted my tax information so they could send a report of MY EARNINGS to the IRS! Earnings? How exciting!

What is CreateSpace? Their logo is “Publish Your Words, Your Way.” They provide the tools and services needed to publish your book and make it available to “millions.”

Here are the Practical Steps toward publication we have so far:

1. Write your book.

2. Prepare your content.

3. Begin revisions.

4. Ask questions.

5. Get a CreateSpace account.

On Day 2, as you may recall, I presented a lengthy narrative of my To Do List and how it played out on the second day. On that list, I alluded to two vitally important steps we must all take if our dream is going to come true. We’ll add more to this list as we go, and we’ll call this list:

Vital Steps.

1. Define your dream.

2. Pray over your dream.

Why are these steps so vital?

We have to actually Create Space in our lives for our dreams to come true.

We can be so busy with daily life and doing nothing that we give little thought and even less prayer to what God has actually placed within us that is our purpose, our destiny, His dream for us. We must define our dream and pray over our dream to create space in our lives to actually accomplish what He wants us to accomplish.

What is your dream? Do you have a dream that you have had all of your life that you know you are supposed to accomplish? Or do you have a strong desire that has developed more recently? You can’t go wrong by taking time to think about those things that you really want to have, do or become. Prayerfully consider what God has placed in your heart.

Define your dream.

Pray over your dream.

Blessings to you as you dream and pray your way to success!

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Day 2: Gratefulness

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God is able to take the worst of it and make the best of it.

Today’s To Do List

  1. Check Day One post  for “31 Days to Publish My Book” one more time.
  2. Publish it.
  3. Link it to 31 Dayers.
  4. Read other 31 Day Blogs for inspiration.
  5. Encourage others.
  6. Ask Questions
  7. Order my friend, Joe’s book.
  8. Live life.
  9. Pray.
  10. Continue choosing posts to be included.
  11. Continue editing posts to be included.
  12. Work on Day 2 post for “31 Days to Publish My Book.”
  13. Pray.
  14. Dream.

Here’s how the day went:

One of the first things I did this morning was to rush to my computer to take one last glimpse of my Day One and push the publish button. Then I zipped over to the 31 Days to Write and linked to it. It’s a pretty amazing concept that just with a couple of clicks my “button” appeared as #202 in a list that now reaches 312 in one of 9 categories. You’ll find me in “Faith and Inspiration,” among friends. Through this link up and through our Facebook group, we read each others posts, comment, and encourage one another. Here’s my favorite from today’s reading: 31 Days of Healing written by Melanie at Musings and Meanderings. I found her story at Paths to Peace: Overcoming AbuseHaving read part of her story has propelled me into a solemn sense of gratefulness for life, for the cleansing Jesus provides, and for the truth that triumph can come from even the most horrendous adversity. God is able to take the worst of it and make the best of it.

Item 6 was happily checked off when I emailed my friend, Anne. I met Anne when I first joined Tribe Writers, an online course that I enrolled in in November, 2013. She was a mentor at the time, always willing to offer advice and encouragement, and I found her equally willing to help today when I asked her some important questions. Anne has published ten books, and I have read two of them. I highly recommend her book, Broken, which can be purchased on Amazon.

Next, I ordered my friend, Joe’s book, “30 Days to a More Powerful Life.” Joe was the first blogger I ever followed. His message resonated with me because he has taken truths that the secular world embraced such as visualization and affirmation and presented them from a Christian perspective. He articulates truths that I believe come straight from the Word of God and puts them into practical principles of success that when practiced properly honor God and produce desired results. I wanted to get the look and feel of a published book like Joe’s because, well, that’s my dream.

Having completed the first 7 items on my To Do list, I continued my day in an attitude of gratefulness. Interestingly enough, #8, “Live life” turned out to be my greatest challenge today. I spent 3 hours researching steps to take when a wallet with personal ID is stolen. Yes, this happened today to one of my sons. Again gratefulness and peace prevailed. We have never had anything like this happen in our family before. For that, I am grateful. Very little money was taken that won’t be returned when the bank and credit cards finish processing, and once again I am reminded that God is able to

Take the worst of it and make the best of it.

Finally late in the afternoon, I sat down at my computer, reviewed my To Do list, and got up to complete #9 which is:

Pray

Because I can easily be distracted, I set my timer for 10 minutes. I walked through my house praying. Moving keeps me from being distracted or taking a nap. Along my walk, I picked up a book that is about the size I think my book might be. I carried it, and I prayed for wisdom, guidance, direction, inspiration, and I thanked God for my dream being still alive. The timer beckoned to be turned off, and I sat down to finish my list. I have chosen 12 posts to be used in the book, and I did some revisions on those.

I lived some life by going out to dinner, and spending time with my oldest son and my husband. I enjoyed time in the jacuzzi talking about life and dreams. After checking off item # 12 with the conclusion of this post, I have two items left on the list. In Day 3 you will hear more about the importance of these 2 in fulfilling your heart’s desire. Join me now as I take some time to:

Pray and Dream

Living life was good today in spite of the adversity we faced. I could sense the life of God flowing in our family through gratefulness for His blessings, His wisdom, His protection, and His love. This walking on water is going well so far! Stay with me!

By the way, I don’t plan to give you such a detailed play by play every day. On Day 3, I’ll share the answers to the questions I asked Anne. They got me so excited!

I hope you’re beginning to think about your dream. You can do it!

What are you grateful for?

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31 Days to Publish My Book

31smallWhat is 31 Days to Write? “31 Days is an online writing challenge started by home blogger, Myquillyn Smith (The Nester), and now hosted by Crystal Stine, where bloggers pick one topic and write a post on that topic every day in October.”

I had made a decision to spend the month reading everyone else’s posts for 31 days in October, but I do love a Challenge. I can’t recall what came over me to get me to jump into this year’s challenge. Looking back now, I think it wasn’t a jump, it was simply a step out of the boat of having and holding on to a dream, the dream of publishing a book. I stepped out and said, “I am going to publish my book!” What you will read here is my journey of stepping out of the boat and walking on water. It is something I can only do if I keep my eyes on Jesus and take a step each day. I hope you’ll join me on the journey, and take something from my experience for yourself! Don’t bring a towel, we won’t be needing it!

Scroll down for my Day 1 post. Or you can browse the other posts in my series as they appear below each new day in October.

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Day 1: The Ultimatum

Day 2: Gratefulness

Day 3: Create Space

Day 4: Wake Up, Dream

Day 5: Live Your Dream

Day 6: Help for Your Dream

Day 7: Time to Rest

Day 8: Say “Yes” to Your Dream

Day 9: 10 Minutes for Your Dream

Day 10: Dream, Sweet, Dream

Day 11: What to Do When Your Dream Is Attacked

Day 12: My Dream

Day 13: The Fifth Vital Step

Day 14: It Looks Like a Book!

The Ultimatum

31 Days to Publish a Book? Did you miss the question mark at the end of the title of this series? Oh, yeah, I deleted it, but it is still clearly there in the recesses of my mind. I have no idea if it is possible to publish a book in 31 days. Let me rephrase that. I have no idea if it is possible for me to publish a book in 31 days. I’m sure it has been done before although I can’t say that I know the name of anyone who has.

When you visit me each day, you will find the progress I make each day in my journey of faith toward publishing my book, Dare to Be Happy. You will find lots of lists including my to do lists, my not to do lists, and a myriad of others lists, because I do love lists. Most of all you will find inspiration and encouragement to move you toward the fulfillment of your dream whatever that might be.

I don’t know for sure that I can do this, but I do know a verse that tells me, “All things are possible with God!” and “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” That is why I deleted the question mark. I am taking this title as an ultimatum.” 31 Days to Publish a Book, Or Else!” I am going to do it! With God’s help, I am finally going to make this happen!

What is your part in this? You are the cheerleaders and the prayers and the believers! And what do you get out of it? You will find out that if I can do this, absolutely anyone can do this, and not only this, but you can do whatever your heart desires! I know how I got to this point, and I am ecstatic to share this with you. I’m nervously excited about stepping out on the water toward publication, and I hope you will follow me and accomplish whatever you want to accomplish in life.

This is my mantra:

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On Day 2, you’ll get a little background on how I got to this point, and you’ll get a glimpse of my To Do List for the first few days toward publication. We can do this!

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