Soul Dreamer Resource: From Dream To Destiny Video Message Series from Gateway Church

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From Dream To Destiny is a current message series from Pastor Robert Morris of Gateway Church, on living out God’s dream for your life, based on the biblical story of Joseph:

Do your dreams seem out of reach?

God has given each of us a dream—an idea that sets our hearts racing at the mere thought of it.

Unfortunately, most people never see their dreams come to pass, so they never fulfill God’s destiny for their lives…

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Lessons On Laughter: Part 2 of Q&A with Miz T – Gospel Comedienne

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miztquote2Miz T shares how her passion for creating laughter has brought spiritual lessons into her life…

In the first part of the Q&A Tranea Prosser, also known as Miz T, shared how she discovered her passion to make others laugh and turned it into her ministry, and now she’s living out her God-given dreams. In part two Miz T gives some wisdom on supporting one another in ministry, advice for young people, and tips on embracing one’s unique calling. Read below for some of her lessons on laughter:

Dream in Soul: You’ve previously mentioned the importance of people mentoring each other, and pulling each other up to be successful. Can you say a little about this, and why it’s important for the community of God to support those who are upcoming and younger?

MizT: That gift of exhortation sure talks alot! Two years ago there were only two people doing Christian comedy in Austin. I reached out to him and invited him to my CD release program where he was introduced and he returned the invitation when he had a production. We are very supportive of each other and to each other in regards to the comedic ministry. The Word says that we are the body of Christ and are all equally important with our separate functions. We need to learn to appreciate everyone for their ministry gifts and not feel like competing against them.

This year has been really busy for Christian comedy. I am pleased and surprised by the number of eblasts I’ve seen promoting Christian comedy events. I have met promoters who are putting on Christian comedy shows and are looking for female christian comedians and we are few in number. I met Reggie Reg from St. Louis, MO in March this year when I was at the Dr. Bobby Jones showcase and we have called each other to give a shot of encouragement before the event. It is great to meet people like that who want you to be successful.

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DS: Tell us about how you let the spirit move you in your comedy and music. Do you have any stories of how people have responded, and how you’ve been able to share God’s word or touched somebody through your comedy?

MizT: Comedy is like music in the sense that either the topic moves you or it doesn’t. My prayer before I perform is Lord, touch those who need this healing and have your way. I am finding that comedy is just another vehicle to reach out to people. I had a man in my church who bought my CD and told me that he listens to it everyday, it’s like therapy for him.

Recently, I was in Brookshire, Texas, at a Youth Gospel Explosion and after a heavy hearted salute – a man recently passed away and his widow and mother were given plaques in his honor – I had to minister after that. While I was on stage I looked down to where the wife and mother were sitting and they were rolling over in laughter and I almost dropped the mike and did the quartet stomp! I said Father, that’s what I came for, to lift those two people. It took everything in me not to let loose a praise, but on the inside I was blessing God! I don’t take the gift of laughter for granted.

DS: What’s a spiritual or life lesson that you think the youth/young adults of today need to hear?

miztquote3MizT: People have gotten away from being authentic and genuine. Our young adults are constantly trying to be by imitation, Beyonce or 50 Cent, instead of accepting who God created them to be and what “gift” God has given them. I’m not taking anything away from them, I’m just using them as a reference. My mother raised me not to compare myself to anyone and maybe that’s why I don’t feel bad that I can’t sing rings around other singers. We should not all look the same nor sing the same because He created us to be different. As I child I was always asked, “Do you sing like your mother?” I used to be intimidated by that and not sing at all, but I had to learn to grow up and accept that her gift is what God wanted her to have. What I have is what God gave to me. He wants to know what am I going to do with it? So my question to any young adult is: “What are you going to do with what God gave you?”

DS: How can someone know how they are to use their gifts for God? What advice do you have for young people who want to venture into a unique ministry field but are afraid to take the jump, or feel pressured to go into a more “traditional” field?

miztportrait_02MizT: You must be prayerful about it. Submit it to God and let him direct you. Don’t be in a hurry, you need to know that you are called to a ministry before you can walk in it and be effective. I get this all the time because I know how to sing people want to put me in the choir and get mad because I won’t sing there. When you are certain of your gifts, you won’t let people pressure you in what they think you should be doing. I’m using my voice in the manner God has directed me for twenty years to lead Praise & Worship which is more than just being a member of the choir.

You also have to invest in yourself not only mentally but financially. Have your act together. I will be performing at the GMWA Women’s Hatter’s Tea because I called to inquire about a souvenir ad and when I told the lady I was a female Christian comedian and wanted to place an ad, she put me on the program. I was invited to the Dr. Bobby Jones showcase by Minister Chuck Spearman after he saw one of my e-blast and was impressed with my ad. If I didn’t have my advertising campaign together, those opportunities would not have been extended to me. If you don’t take yourself seriously, others won’t either.

DS: Is there anything you’d do different or lessons you learned in starting your ministry? What tips would you give to others in starting their own ministries and in promoting their gifts?

MizT: I followed the outline that God gave me two years ago. I share with people that when God gives you the dream, He will also give you the vision and lay it out for you. My homework was to do research for managing and promoting myself. I had to decide how many times a month I want to travel. Be sure to schedule “me” time so I don’t get burned out. Learn how to relate to your audience. I’m still learning about the gospel industry by attending workshops and seminars even though they pertain to music. I had to learn about delivery vehicles like e-blasts, banners and podcasts. Christian comedy is still an untapped market but the promoting of it works the same as music.

DS: Do you have a favorite scripture that you’d like to share?

MizT: 1 Peter 5:7
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DS: Any upcoming projects? How can we find out more about you, or see you in action?

MizT: Yes, there is a comedy DVD in the works right now. I am planning another live recording later this year and hopefully it can be released by January 2010. I have been approached about working in a stage play. I have ideas about MizT comedy cards that I’m working on. I also have comedy ringtones available. I keep my calendar on my website up to date so keep taking sneak peeks on www.miztgospelcomedienne.com.

If you missed it, click here for the first part of the Q&A to read about how Miz T got started in her ministry.

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Miz T, a native of Austin, TX, who is also a singer and worship leader at her church, says that her original comedy material is rated “I” for the innocent. Her comical content ranges from stories within the church to musical skits. Miz T is bringing her hilarious message to churches and other venues, with the goal of tickling and touching souls one joke at a time. To learn more about Miz T and her ministry, visit her website at www.miztgospelcomedienne.com where you can also purchase her CD “Back At ‘Ya, Lord!” You can follow her on Twitter as @MizTcomedy for regular doses of clever humor.

Growing into Your Calling: Part 2 of Interview with Dr. Naima Johnston

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In Part 1 of the interview, Dr. Naima Johnston introduced herself and her passion to share her past mistakes in ministry to help aspiring artists. In Part 2 she shares how she overcame many obstacles to respond to her call to sing, and gives even more advice on finding your calling. Her new book Called To Sing: 13 Mistakes To Avoid When Starting In Music Ministry addresses issues that many artists fail to recognize as potential problems that can stunt the growth of their ministries. If you missed it click here to read Part 1 of the interview.


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Dream in Soul: How do you think someone knows what their ministry calling is? How do you know if you are called to sing?

Dr. Johnston: I think that we have to pursue our healthy passion. What’s that thing that you’ve always wanted to do? What’s that problem you’ve always wanted to fix? What’s that thing that’s a burden to your soul? I think you take that and begin to pursue that passion or try to fix that problem, or work to relieve that burden.

Sometimes I think we make the call of God so deep and difficult. Like it’s this elusive thing we can’t seem to get a grip on. But I think deep down most of us know what we’re called to do, it’s implanted in us before we are born. We just need to know how the Lord would have us to live out that call. Some folks have a true burden for missions work, then it gets specific, to a particular country and they go. Some people wind up living their entire life on the mission field, some go once a year. Some folks are called to full time music ministry to travel and share with others, some are called to stay in the local church and lead worship.

Prayer… lots of prayer about the thing that you are most passionate about and then start walking in that. I truly believe if you go forward with a sincere heart and an open ear, God will correct if you’re off course.

DS: How should Christian artists regard their craft, and how do they stay focused on the task of ministry vs. industry?

Dr. Johnston: Wow, I just wrote a whole blog about that at www.naimajohnston.blogspot.com called Chasing The Dream. I had just finished reading, “No Compromise, The Keith Green Story.” That book impacted me greatly. Keith Green was one of the founding fathers of Contemporary Christian music, he died in a plane crash when he was only 28 years old. I recommend all music ministers and Christian Recording Artists read this book. He walked away from the industry when he was it’s biggest star to focus his music on a more ministry minded level – the fruit has been huge. Thousands of people have had their lives changed because of his ministry. And that’s a question artists need to ask themselves – are you doing this because you want to sing or are you doing this because you want to change lives?

If you’re doing it to change lives you’ll accept and be content with wherever the Lord leads you. We can’t all be CeCe Winans and Fred Hammond. But that does not mean our ministries are not as important or as needed. You have to do what you the Lord calls you to do, be faithful there and be happy with where He takes you.

calledtosingfruitAs I get older and more mature in the Lord, industry becomes less important and ministry becomes the most important thing. People are dying and going to hell, that’s why God gave you the gift He gave you. And the saints need to be encouraged as well, and music ministry or “Christian Entertainment” plays a big role in that as well. It’s a fine line and you have to learn to walk it. Artists have to ask themselves, where is the fruit? I know the Lord told me I was going to sing to nations, and in my mind, I had a very specific idea about what that meant. Recently I learned that people were downloading my music in Japan. I’m about to send off a box of donated CDs to a ministry work in the Philippines – seems to me that’s singing to the nations. I may never be well known on earth but I’m living my dream and sharing the love of Christ with as many people as I can.

As for craft, I believe that all artists should “perfect” their craft. You should take voice lessons and study your instruments, you should practice daily and you should read books about songwriting and attend conferences, lectures and workshops. And you should find a mentor if you don’t have one. You’ve also got to practice the craft of being a Christian, prayer, church, the word! When the anointing meets a prepared vessel – watch out now!!!

DS: Do you have a favorite Bible Scripture that is your mantra, or that sustains you in difficult times?

Dr. Johnston: That changes depending on where I am at the moment, but right now it’s Psalm 32 Verse 8: :

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And now with the recession and people afraid to walk into fulltime ministry I really love Psalm 37, especially verse 19: They will survive through hard times even in famine they will have more then enough!

DS: You’ve been through so much in the past few years. How have you been able to overcome it all, and what advice do you give to others to overcome their obstacles to follow their God-given dreams?

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Dreaming in Soul, Part 1: Do Not Fear

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Do Not Fear; Hear His Voice, Heed His Holy Spirit…

by Dream in Soul Editor Julene Fleurmond

She tossed and turned all night. She could not sleep. The same thoughts permeated her heart, and her mind was filled with visions.

“Lord,” she prayed. “What does this mean? Is this dream from you? Is this what you really want me to do?”

The answer was soft. Like a message placed in her heart for only her to hear. “I’ve put dreams and hopes in your soul before you were a born, visions you had as a child. Have faith.”

“But Lord, I don’t know if I can do this? What if people don’t understand? What if they-”

“Where is your faith? Who is your master?”

“Lord can’t you fix me first? Make me better, make me worthy, take away my weakness, so that others can be receptive, so that others can be moved, so they can understand. So they won’t reject me – uh, um, I mean You.”

“My child, you must decrease for Me to increase. Have the faith that I can work through you as you are completing the work I have placed in your heart. Have faith that I will put the words in you, that I will be with you as I was with Moses. My power is made strong in your weakness. I give you the spirit of wisdom, understanding, counsel, and of power. My grace is sufficient.”

“But God, I am so not cut out for this. No one really does this. Shouldn’t I try to be more like -”

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid, for I will be with you wherever you go! You are as I made you, I made you for this purpose. No one has done this because you were made to.”

Silence. She breathed in heavily, her heart pounding with the intensity of His words, His assurance. She was in the pressing place, but the only one pressing was herself, her own lack of abandonment for His ability. His presence was silken, soothing, and slowly she let Him take her guard and give her His. She let her breath out, slowly.

“I’ll try to do it God, though I’m not sure where to start or go.”

“At the beginning. Follow Me, I am the Way.”


“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

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