You never know when I might play a wild card on you!
Today's Wild Card author is:
and the book:
Deep River Books (September 10, 2012)
***Special thanks to Shelby Stafford for sending me a review copy.***
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Aaron Broyles is an entrepreneur, author and speaker. Aaron has launched several start-up companies and has grown them into multi-million dollar organizations. He currently owns, manages and sells businesses in many different industries including software development, rail and transportation, technology consulting, fitness, and sales training.
Visit the author's website.
SHORT BOOK DESCRIPTION:
Often we are intrigued by high-profile people and entrepreneurs who have done great things. Perhaps it's a desire to experience greatness firsthand. It's easy to recognize the accomplishments of others, but have you ever considered your own capacity to Do Great Things?
Entrepreneurs excel at vision-casting and inspiring others. They're driven, efficient and passionate. They're able to overcome and to use their fears to their advantage. They have the ability to turn defeat into opportunity, and so do you!
Author and speaker Aaron Broyles points you to a foundation of self-discovery based on God's principles and truth. He shares entrepreneurial methods that will reveal your potential and unlock your ability to achieve success in everyday life.
Desire to know your purpose. Stop putting limits on your life. Your definition of great things is about to take on new meaning.
List Price: $16.99
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Deep River Books (September 10, 2012)
Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5
AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER:
“One of the main weaknesses of mankind is the average man’s familiarity
with the word ‘impossible.’ He knows all the rules which will not
work. He knows all the things which cannot be done.”
I’ve always wondered what it would be like to do great things. I’ve watched
countless History Channel specials and biography broadcasts about famous
people in history who have done what the world generally considers to be
great things. I’ve always admired the founding fathers of the United States, like
George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton,
James Madison, and John Adams. I’m amazed at the incredible accomplishments
of these leaders, in addition to the countless others who fought for and established
the great nation of the United States.
I’m also amazed at the presidents over the years who successfully led our
country through good times and bad. Presidents like Washington, Jefferson,
Lincoln, Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Reagan have intrigued me. Our
nation continues to honor and revere these great leaders from our past, and rightfully
Likewise, I am inspired by the great accomplishments of people who have
changed our world with their intelligence, talent, bravery, leadership, sacrifice,
hard work, wisdom, and resolve. I think of Mother Teresa, Thomas Edison, Albert
Einstein, Harriet Tubman, Neil Armstrong, Elvis Presley, Warren Buffett, Billy
Graham, Babe Ruth, Sir Isaac Newton, Winston Churchill, Charles Lindbergh,
Helen Keller, Martin Luther, Martin Luther King, Jr., Henry Ford. How’s that for
a list of amazing people?
I have played guitar for years, and I’ve always been fascinated by Eric Clapton.
I am absolutely blown away when I see Clapton in concert. I am amazed at his outstanding
talent for songwriting and singing, and by his incredible guitar-playing
abilities. I have personally witnessed Eric Clapton doing great things as it relates
to music and artistic expression.
I’m not alone in my fascination with people like these. But why are we so
intrigued and obsessed with those who have done great things? What is it about
their amazing accomplishments that we find so compelling? Perhaps there is a
desire in each one of us that longs for greatness, something deep within our souls.
Have you ever considered your own capacity for great things? Do you believe
you have the potential, ability, and will to capitalize on life’s opportunities in order
to fulfill your purpose?
Let me ask you another question: if you knew you could do whatever your
heart was designed to do with complete fulfillment, excitement, passion, and
adventure, without the possibility of failing, would you do it? I’m referring to the
idea of living out of your true purpose, drinking from the well of real life. Keep in
mind that I’m not asking you what others think you ought to be doing. No, I’m asking
you to really ponder the idea of living life as you were designed to live it. I’m
not suggesting a life with no difficulties or trials, and I’m not implying that it’s possible
to live in perfection. I’m describing a life grounded in authentic fulfillment.
If your answer is yes, then let’s explore this idea further.
In the movie Forrest Gump, many lives were transformed because of the
impact Forrest had on them, especially Jenny and Captain Dan. I think what I love
most about the movie is that Forrest is an unlikely hero. Here’s a man who has
grown up with the odds stacked against him. He’s not intelligent, and he has no
father figure in his life. He didn’t grow up in a wealthy home, and he struggles
with several disabilities. Yet, despite all the setbacks, Forrest Gump lives an
extraordinary life. He does great things, and he makes an enormous impact on
the lives of those around him. Forrest finds himself in some devastating situations
that include war, disaster, riots, personal disabilities, and a hurricane, and yet he
emerges with incredible success while those around him can only see the negative
circumstances. What a phenomenal story!
When we consider our heroes and amazing people, we don’t typically think
of people with the profile of Forrest Gump. No, our heroes and doers of great
things should be attractive, intelligent, well educated, exciting, wealthy, privileged,
and famous. John F. Kennedy, Jr. was the epitome of this description.
Throughout his childhood and into adulthood, the press followed him, and many
speculated that he would be a great leader, possibly even president of the United
States. There are many who to this day question what amazing things JFK would
have accomplished had his life not been cut short.
Why were such incredible expectations placed on this man? I believe it had
more to do with his last name, wealth, background, and looks than it did with
How could such expectations be placed on anyone for such superficial reasons
When I was growing up, there was no speculation from the media regarding
my future. Reporters did not follow me to school and discuss what great things
I might do in the future, and I would venture to say that they did not do so with
you. In fact, at the time of writing this book, I am virtually unknown by any aside
from my family and friends and acquaintances in the community where I live.
I grew up in an average, middle-class, blue-collar working family. I am a man
of average intelligence and average looks. My grade-point average in grade school,
high school, and college is not worth mentioning. I played soccer, but my athletic
ability was average at best. My parents never attended college and were very
young when they had me, so I did not have a wealth of resources at my disposal.
Yet, having stated all those facts, I consider myself every bit as qualified for success
as JFK was.
There are many in far worse situations than mine, with virtually no hope for
a future, and there are millions in between with varied backgrounds, abilities,
and potential. And then there are those with everything in the world at their disposal,
including resources, talent, intelligence, and connections. This is the category
we tend to expect the most from. The JFKs of the world. But the truth is
your potential for success has very little to do with your background and abilities.
In fact, your potential for success is determined by what you will do in the
future as opposed to where you came from in the past.
In the following paragraphs, I’m going to outline a few scenarios, with reallife
examples, of success or failure as they relate to roots and background. There
is a great lesson to be learned in carefully examining background and its potential
determination of a person’s future.
Scenario 1: A person is born into a virtually hopeless situation and yet emerges
Isn’t it fascinating when those with humble beginnings and virtually no hope for
a future go on to do amazing things? It seems like a miracle when someone comes
from such devastating circumstances and makes meaning out of his life. while
those who have everything at their fingertips amount to very little in terms of
contribution or personal fulfillment.
Abraham Lincoln is an excellent example of a man who lived an extraordinary
life despite the fact that he was born into a very poor family. Lincoln was
born in a one-room cabin in rural Kentucky in 1809, and he had a hard life growing
up. He lost his mother at the age of nine, and he was not very close to his
father. He was a self-educated man, and it goes without saying that Lincoln is
considered to be one of the great US presidents. He was an inspiring leader who
achieved great things despite many hardships and difficulties.1
Oprah Winfrey is another example of a person overcoming great obstacles.
Oprah was born into poverty, and she was passed from family member to family
member throughout her childhood. She was sexually abused multiple times by
family members. At age fourteen, Oprah became pregnant, and she delivered a
son who only lived for two weeks. Despite the terrible circumstances of her childhood,
she went on to become one of the most popular and successful media stars
in history.2 Other examples abound. Richard Branson, a multibillion-dollar entrepreneur
with over three hundred fifty companies under his control, was a highschool
dropout, and he has dyslexia.3 Michael Jordan, who many call one of the
greatest basketball players to ever live, was cut from the high-school basketball
team his sophomore year. Despite that setback, Jordan went on to win six NBA
titles, one NCAA title, and two gold medals.4
Scenario 2: A person is born into a virtually hopeless situation and never really
emerges from the difficult environment.
Some people live out a self-fulfilling prophecy of failure and defeat. They never
pull out of the environments they start from. They believe that there is no hope
for them to go beyond where they are today, and they choose a life of fear, defeat,
We are typically not surprised at this situation—certainly not as surprised as
we are when someone from such a background succeeds—because it seems more
feasible that a person living in a negative environment will not have the means to
rise above it. Some believe that the power of a person’s environment is so overwhelming
that it is nearly impossible to escape it.
During my childhood, I knew a boy from grade school who lived in a very
troubling environment. He didn’t know his father, and his mother didn’t seem to
care very much about him. He would wear the same clothes for months, and he
did not bathe for days. He never did his homework, and he was always in trouble.
He really didn’t have anyone in his life who was providing him with any
direction or hope for the future.
I got to know him a bit in seventh grade. He was a good kid despite his terrible
circumstances, but unfortunately, he could no longer cope with his life, and
he ended it with a gun one evening in the summer before our eighth-grade year.
This example is one of millions that exist in the world. I’m sure you can think
of someone who has lived and possibly died in a similar fashion.
Scenario 3: A person is born into (or eventually enters) an amazing environment,
and yet chooses to squander it away.
Perhaps such people were born into a loving, caring family, or into a successful
family by the world’s standards. Despite having every opportunity and resource
at their disposal, they waste their potential by living lives of “ignoble ease,” as
Theodore Roosevelt put it. In fact, President Roosevelt once said, “I wish to
preach, not the doctrine of ignoble ease, but the doctrine of the strenuous life.”5
I’m sure you’ve seen examples of children born into famous and wealthy
families who end up addicted to drugs or who find themselves in and out of jail.
Unfortunately, too many examples of this situation are playing out around us
every day, and it seems to be growing more common.
There are also those who attain initial success or notoriety and go on to dismantle
Whitney Houston is an example of someone who achieved a great deal early
in her life. She is the only artist to chart seven consecutive number-one Billboard
Hot 100 hits and seven consecutive multiplatinum albums. Whitney’s combined
albums, singles, and videos sold during her career with Arista Records totals 170
million. Her Bodyguard soundtrack is one of the top ten biggest-selling albums of
all time at 17X platinum in just the United States alone, and her version of Dolly
Parton’s song “I Will Always Love You” is the biggest-selling United States single
of all time. Whitney was born into an amazing musical family. Her mother was
the well-known singer Cissy Houston, and her cousins Dee Dee Warwick and
Dionne Warwick were both successful artists. All had an influential impact on
Whitney. Whitney found success as a singer in her teenage years with performances
in the 1970s and early 1980s with stars such as Chaka Khan, the Neville
Brothers, and others. When she was twenty-one, Whitney’s first album debuted
with over twelve million copies sold in the United States, and it set the record as
the biggest-selling debut album by a solo artist. Music historians say Whitney
may have had the greatest voice of our time.6
Whitney Houston was fortunate to be born into such an amazing musical
family. She was also born with an unbelievable voice, and she had the advantage
of musical connections and influences. She experienced amazing success early in
her career because she took action and capitalized on her potential. She worked
extremely hard, and she did not waste any opportunity. However, she came to a
point in her life when things began to change. Allegations of drug use and unpredictable
behavior became the headlines in the news in place of the accolades and
stunning reviews. In an unfortunate series of events, Whitney’s career and life
came to a premature end. I wonder what Whitney could have continued to do
had she not wasted such amazing potential.7
In addition, it seems like you can’t turn on the news without hearing about
a child of a celebrity going terribly wrong. Celebrity children seem to struggle
more than the rest of us with drugs, alcohol, arrest, and suicide. Marie Osmond,
Paul Newman, Art Linkletter, and many other celebrities have lost children to
drug overdoses or suicide. True, whether it’s really a benefit to be the child of
someone famous can be argued, but it’s certainly difficult to make a negative case
against a backdrop of children who are born with no family or into extreme
Scenario 4: A person is born into a great environment with outstanding
opportunities and resources at his fingertips, and he chooses to
do great things. He decides to commit to things greater than himself.
Steve Forbes is an example of a man born into great promise and potential who
capitalized on that potential. His grandfather founded Forbes, Inc., in 1917.
Forbes was well educated and took over a flourishing business that had been
established for some time. There are many who wish for an opportunity like he
had. Others do share his advantages, yet, perhaps due to the intimidation of high
expectations, they never step to the plate and really make the attempt. Steve
Forbes, on the other hand, has done great things. Forbes’s career and accomplishments
speak volumes. Under Forbes’s leadership, his company has launched
countless publications and businesses across the world. Forbes magazine has
become the nation’s leading business magazine with an international audience in
excess of six million readers. In addition, Forbes served in the Reagan and George
W. Bush administrations as chairman of the board for international broadcasting,
he has authored several books, and serves on several prominent boards. I
recently attended a luncheon at which Steve Forbes was the guest speaker, and I
was impressed with his knowledge and perspective on capitalism, politics, and
the world in general. He has certainly done great things.8
Other examples of people born into amazing environments who go on to
accomplish great things include Peyton and Eli Manning, sons of the great football
player Archie Manning, who have become pro players as well. Michael Douglas,
son of the famous actor Kirk Douglas, went on to become a star in his own
right. Actress Kate Hudson, the daughter of Goldie Hawn and Keifer Sutherland
(himself the son of Donald Sutherland) is another example.
The point I am making in these scenarios must be understood as a foundation
for your life. It is a concept and worldview that can transform your very life
and the way you live it. Simply put, your circumstances, your background, your
experience, your intelligence, your family history, your mistakes, your accomplishments,
your education, your lack of education and so on do not and cannot
dictate what you choose to do with your future.
I don’t care if you were born into excellent circumstances or extreme poverty
or abuse, you have the potential and possibility to do great things. You have the
power to shape your future.
Many people have already made life decisions about themselves based on
bad data. They have already decided who they are and what they are capable of.
There are many who have made these decisions quite early in the lives, as if their
lives are predetermined in some way. The amazing thing about this mindset is that
most people are unaware of the fact that they have it!
Scenario 5: This is your scenario. You were born into a unique situation and
environment that is not exactly the same as anyone else’s who has
ever lived. It might be similar, but it is not exactly the same. But
even more than that, you have the potential to do great things.
Your potential for greatness has very little to do with your background
or where you came from.
My junior year in college, I had the opportunity to apply for an internship with
a large, successful, and well-respected company that was headquartered near my
school. There were two positions available, and these two positions were the
highest paying, most prestigious of all the internships available in my field. Several
of my classmates were applying, and there was a lot of discussion about who
would be chosen for these two positions. I found out that there were several hundred
applicants, and they would have the opportunity to interview over the
course of several days.
On the second-to-last day of interviewing, one of my professors approached
me on campus and asked if I would be interviewing for the internship. I was
surprised—shocked, in fact—by her question. I had no intention of subjecting
myself to the interview. I was a C student with no credentials or promise of attaining
such a position. Considering I had attended several of her classes, she should
have known that I wasn’t qualified! I had barely passed her classes in the past, and
I wasn’t doing so well in the class she was teaching at the time.
Do you see how I had already made decisions about who I was and what I
was capable of? I was only twenty years old, and I already had strong limiting
beliefs about who I was and what I could and could not do. If you’d asked me
outright about those beliefs, I would never have admitted them. I really wasn’t
fully aware I believed them, yet I was making decisions based on them.
My professor encouraged me to interview on the last day. She even wrote a
recommendation—I needed it because my grade-point average did not meet the
required standard to be accepted for the interview. I reluctantly agreed to take it.
I was reluctant because I didn’t want to put myself in an embarrassing situation.
I didn’t want to be let down. Maybe there was part of me that did not want confirmation
of what I already believed to be true.
How about you? Are you taking yourself out of the game? Are you thinking
to yourself, “You can’t lose if you don’t play”? As I look back on it now, I know
that’s what I was doing: I was taking myself out of the game as it related to my
performance academically. It was much easier to take a C grade knowing that I
hadn’t really tried that hard. You too may be taking yourself out of the game, and
you may not even realize what you are doing or why.
When you put yourself on the line and give it everything you have, then you
truly know if you have what it takes or not. I was afraid to know that answer.
On the last day of interviewing, I showed up and did the interview. I was
shocked when I was called back for a second and then a third. A week later, I
received a phone call: they had selected me to make my choice of the two positions.
I couldn’t believe it. My professor and several employees of the hiring company
believed in me more than I believed in myself. I had the internship!
My professor later shared with me that she knew I had potential, but I needed
to start trying or else that potential would be wasted. She asked me if my gradepoint
average truly reflected my abilities and potential. They did not. But my
future was not to be dictated by my past. I had established a new belief about
myself, and that is where real change and accomplishment begin.
To accomplish great things in your life, I’m not asking you to be become
someone different. Make no mistake about it. I am not encouraging you to
become someone else. How many times have you looked at someone else and
thought to yourself, “I wish I could be more like that person”? Have you ever
dreamed of changing your personality and morphing into a completely different
person? How many times have you quietly said to yourself,
• If only I were smarter
• If only I were funny
• If only I had different parents, or a different spouse, or a different job
• If only the economy were better
• If only I had more money
To do great things, you do not need to become someone you are not. Rather,
you are about to embark on an amazing journey and incredible adventure, starting
with a foundation of self-discovery that will lead to accomplishing great
things. That foundation is based on principles and truth, and while we will
explore techniques and exercises aimed at shaping your potential, our foundation
will be on truth and God’s principles. Techniques have value when they are practiced
on a solid foundation of truth; however, when used outside God’s will, they
are simply gimmicks and tricks that will ultimately fall short.
I recently purchased a 1960 Corvette. It has been my dream car since I was
a small child. I’ve spent years looking for the right combination, and during that
time, I’ve looked at a lot of 1960 Corvettes. One day I thought I had found the
perfect car. On the outside, the car was in fantastic condition. The paint was
incredible; the interior was perfect. It was a real “head turner.”
Before I would purchase the car, I had an inspection to ensure it was in good
working condition. After a thorough examination of the car, it was determined
that the frame was not solid. This car was rusting away from the inside. Even
though the exterior was flawless, the car could be dangerous on the road because
the integrity of the frame was in question.
Many in the world today are living just like that Corvette. They are great at
looking good on the outside. As far as appearances go, they’ve got everyone thinking
they’ve got it together. But while they’re occupied with appearance, status, and
what other people think, they struggle to find real meaning and purpose in their
lives. They’re living in fear of others finding out who they really are. They’re doing
just enough to get by, and they’re afraid to ever really take a chance on anything—
especially on themselves.
I could have purchased that Corvette with the rusty frame, and I might even
have made some modifications, like a new stereo system or custom interior or
different wheels, but those improvements would have been a complete waste
without a solid foundation. What difference does it make if you have an awesome
stereo system in a car that has broken in half?
So the question becomes, what is a solid foundation? (And I’m not talking
about a Corvette.) What does that even mean? Is it self-confidence? Is it a lack of
fear? Is it peace? Is it real understanding of myself? Does it mean that I’m willing
to take chances? Is it a belief in myself?
We’ll explore this question in more detail as we go, but in a nutshell, the
solid foundation for your life is a belief system based on truth and the discovery
of who you were designed to be so that you can realize your purpose, potential,
and abilities as designed by God.
I have found that the things which I learn on my own, those things which I
internalize and truly understand, revolutionize my life in a dramatic way. Why?
Because I am the one who made the discovery. Dr. Howard Hendricks, a great
professor of theology, says, “Knowledge that is self-discovered is stored in the
deepest part of the mind and remains the longest in memory. There is no jewel
more precious than that which you have mined yourself.”
I promise that if you are willing to open your mind and seek the real truth
of who you are, you will make a discovery that will dramatically change your life.
You will understand the foundation upon which an amazing life can be built.
You will go on to do great things. These things will be the fruit of that foundation,
and they will impact you and everyone around you in a dynamic way. This
will be an epiphany of enormous proportions.
Once you have the foundation, great things will flow naturally from your life.
You will not miss it if you desire to know it, though your definition of “great
things” might change as you continue to read. Let’s take a moment and define what
great things are. I’ll start first by defining what they are not. Great things are not:
• Accumulation of things
Our culture today has confused and twisted things around. Although fame
and fortune and power are not inherently bad, they are completely irrelevant to
authentic great things. Many in history have obtained fame and fortune and power
and popularity, but they did not do great things. Adolf Hitler is one example of this
truth. I think most would agree that these things are not the ingredients to greatness,
although they are confused for greatness every day.
You currently have the potential to do amazing things in the situation where
you reside. I am talking about things of real value and meaning. I’m talking about
things that get you excited, those of great adventure, risk, and danger. I’m talking
about things that scare you to death and thrill you all at the same time.
As I already shared, I am the quintessential average person. However, I am
living an extraordinary life. I’m not doing so because I’m somehow more special
than others. I’m not a great or amazing person, but I am doing great and amazing
things. I’m fulfilled, I’m happy, and I live an adventure every day. Oh, I have
my moments and struggles like everyone else. Things do not come easily to me.
I have to work extremely hard. I’m an imperfect person with many flaws, but I
am doing great things.
I gave my life to Jesus Christ at a very young age, and I grew up going through
times of obedience and times of rebellion. I married my high-school sweetheart,
Angie, and I am more in love with her today than I ever was when we first married.
I can’t wait to get home and see her at the end of the day. I love sharing my
deepest thoughts with her, and I love hearing what she thinks.
We have four children, and I have the opportunity to be their daddy every
single day. I make a lot of mistakes, but they always forgive me. I love my family,
and I just love spending time with them. Each of my children absolutely amazes
me. They are all different in their own way.
I am blessed with many great friends. My friends stand by me even when I
mess up, and they are the first ones to point me back in the right direction.
I have the opportunity to serve in many ways at the church I belong to.
Despite my shortcomings, I am involved in people’s lives, and I love it. I have the
opportunity to teach an adult Sunday school class. I serve in various capacities
within the church where my strengths and abilities are the strongest. I thoroughly
enjoy serving even though I’m not a natural “giver.”
I also serve in my community in civic service, and I’m able to contribute back
to the wonderful city that we call home.
I’m an entrepreneur. I love to take chances. I’ve started several businesses
from scratch and built them up, and I’ve had the opportunity to sell them. There
are many people out there who are much better at business than me, but I’ve
had good success despite that fact. Although I’ve been fortunate in my business
dealings, I understand that I can fail at any time. Failure doesn’t paralyze me anymore.
My self-worth has nothing do with my successes or failures.
I’m the average Joe who’s living a life of great things. I’m blessed beyond
measure, and I wake up every day thanking God for everything he has done for
me. I’m genuinely happy, although I have my share of bad days. My circumstances
have little to do with my joy. I’m confident in myself, but that confidence
does not rest on my abilities, strength, achievements, or anything that I do. It’s
tethered to something far greater.
That something is the real foundation of success, the real foundation of a life
worth living. Take a moment and consider that God does exist. If God does exist
and he created the entire universe, including you, then he knows exactly how you
are wired. He has knowledge regarding what can truly fulfill you. He knows better
than anyone in the world, including yourself, what makes you happy and
what makes you tick. In fact, not only does he know what makes you tick, but
he’s the reason you are wired the way you are. It was his design from the very
Think about it. Aren’t there things that you thoroughly enjoy doing today
that you never could have imagined enjoying years ago? I started playing guitar
my freshman year in college. Through the years I’ve played in a few bands, and
I have loved every minute of it. If you asked me in high school if I would enjoy
playing guitar in a band, I wouldn’t have even considered it. I had no idea at that
time in my life that I would enjoy making music or playing a musical instrument.
In fact, several years ago I really immersed myself into blues music, and I even
played in an exclusive blues band for a couple of years. I didn’t even know what
blues music was in high school, and I would never have guessed I’d be that passionate
about it. On the other hand, God knows exactly what you will love doing
in the future. He knows the very things that can fulfill you completely, even
though you are completely oblivious to those things now.
Now imagine for a moment that you could access that information. Your self discovery
would be off the charts. I’m not saying that things would be easy or perfect,
but most great things aren’t easy. I’d also like to point out that God is more
interested in your character development and who you are than he is in your
level of comfort. I can truly identify with this concept after becoming a father. I
enjoy watching my kids have a great time, but I also know that it is important that
they learn and grow and acquire the necessary skills for success. It is essential for
A few years ago, two of my sons were fighting with each other, and I stepped
in to break it up. The younger brother was doing everything he could to annoy
his older brother, and I must say he was very successful in this endeavor. I pulled
my older son to the side and gave him some advice on how to deal with it. I had
a younger brother growing up, so I had some experience in this area.
A few hour hours later another dispute broke out, and I could see the
younger brother was back in full stride. I could have stepped in immediately and
broken it up, but I waited. I wanted to see how my older son would handle the
situation now that he was armed with my advice.
God does the same sometimes. He allows us to go through a trial or difficult
situation, because he cares more about our character than our comfort.
So if God knows exactly what makes us tick, and he loves us, doesn’t it make
sense to align with his plan for our lives instead of stumbling around on our own
like a blind squirrel in search of a nut?
Stephen Covey writes, “Begin with the End in Mind means to begin each day,
task, or project with a clear vision of your desired direction and destination.”9
God will not always reveal his entire plan for us upfront, so it will not always be
possible to have clear understanding of your destination, but I guarantee you that
his plan is the only way to be fulfilled. His plan is the only one that will lead anywhere
meaningful. Significance outside of God’s plan is a myth, and you will
never know God’s plan without a relationship with God.
With that relationship as your foundation, you can use the principles of God’s
Word to live an extraordinary life—a life that only you are designed to live.
Over the last decade, I’ve spent considerable time researching the great entrepreneurs
of America. I have been fascinated by the idea that each entrepreneur
is unique and creative in his or her own specific way. Every great entrepreneur has
a unique style, background, ability, and approach. I was amazed to discover the
varied personalities, experience, and education in their stories.
As I started to look deeper, I began to discover common threads of behavior
present in the great entrepreneurs. I realized that there were certain principles or
methods that these great entrepreneurs were employing in their ventures that
were instrumental to their success, regardless of their background, experience,
education, or personality type.
I also discovered that these entrepreneurial methods could be applied and
used in one’s personal life with remarkable results. For example, the great entrepreneurs
are able to see opportunity that others don’t typically see, and they have
an ability to capitalize on those opportunities in creative and trailblazing ways.
The great entrepreneurs are excellent at creating vision and inspiring others to that
particular vision. They are driven, efficient, and passionate about what they do.
They are able to overcome their fears and actually use fear to their advantage.
They have a sense for what’s really important, and they tend to focus on the right
things. The great entrepreneurs are good at evaluating options while minimizing
risk and maximizing opportunity, and they have a sixth sense for anticipating
trends. They have resolve and persistence, and they are great at turning defeat into
Throughout this book, you will learn the process of applying these entrepreneurial
methods in your own personal life. You will be amazed at the potential
that you already possess when you start to apply these amazing methods.
While these entrepreneurial methods have incredible value, they are simply
a collection of contrived techniques without the foundation of Christian principles.
I can provide countless examples of great entrepreneurs who have amassed
outrageous fortunes only to find that they are not fulfilled and are living a meaningless
existence without an authentic foundation.
If you build your life on techniques and manipulation in a self-serving
approach to get as much as you can, I can assure you that a great awakening will
occur in your life at some point. Unfortunately, this happens for many people
near the end of their lives when it’s too late. The Bible says, “What good is it for
a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?”10 John D. Rockefeller, perhaps
one of the wealthiest men in history, was once asked, “How much money
is enough money?” Rockefeller replied, “Just a little bit more.”11
If you have no interest in God and spiritual things, I would like to make a deal
with you as you continue reading this book. I encourage you to complete the
book on the basis of learning and applying the powerful entrepreneurial methods
that are presented. The value of these methods will pay significant dividends
in your personal life. As you encounter the references to God, consider the possibility
that these references represent an area you should perhaps reconsider.
Keep an open mind and really think through these areas of your life. You may be
surprised, and you might possibly make a discovery that could transform your
entire life. Think about it for a moment: if what you are believing or not believing
right now is not true, do you want to know the truth? If your answer really
is yes, you owe it to yourself to keep an open mind.
What you are about to read will light a fire for change in your life, because
you are about to embark on a journey. Maybe you find yourself escaping to a
world that does not resemble reality. Many people escape in their own minds
where they live out their fantasies and dreams, never knowing or realizing those
thoughts as reality. Perhaps you spend more time daydreaming about who you
want to be than really living.
Incredible opportunity exists for you as you read further, and I am excited for
what you will discover. My mission in writing this book is this: I seek to inspire,
motivate and equip you to find authentic fulfillment, passion, and meaning by
truly discovering the exact person God made you to be while applying amazing
entrepreneurial methods in your life.
I believe every person on earth has incredible value and potential, and when
a person understands his or her purpose, potential, and abilities as designed by
God, that person will accomplish and experience great things.
The amazing thing about this journey of great things is that you are the only
person in the world right now who can accomplish your purpose. There is no one
else who can step into your shoes and be you better than you can be you. At this
very moment of your life, you must decide. Who are you? What is your purpose?
What are the great things that you’ve been called to? I’m so excited about the
adventure before you.