The Lord will fight for you, you need only be still. Exodus 14:14
My friend Sakenim shared this powerful word about standing on God’s promises in your situation regardless of how things look and how you feel. Sakenim is a beautiful warrior of God who has overcome many battles and speaks with power and grace. I know she will inspire you as she did me!
God is in charge of every area of your life – all you have to do is be still, stand firm, speak His Word and BELIEVE!
“Be patient, work on yourself…what is your purpose? Be passionate about that and get yourself ready because when God brings you the right person you have to then be able to receive them…no person is going to be able to fill you up.” – DeVon Franklin
Being a twenty-something myself, love is one of the most popular topics among my peers and I (and the theme of many a Facebook status update announcing friends’ engagements and nuptials and reminding singles of their status – thanks alot Mark Zuckerberg;).
For our first Dreaming of Love Inspiration Interview I spoke to DeVon Franklin who is Senior Vice President of Columbia Tristar Pictures and author of the bestselling book Produced by Faith (one of my favorite books about pursuing your purpose and divine dreams featured previously on Dream in Soul, and his wife Meagan Good a talented actress from movies such as “Jumping the Broom” and “Think Like a Man.” In the first part of their interview they give advice to singles on purpose and preparing for a mate, and talk about the book they are writing together on waiting.
Stay tuned for more from DeVon and Meagan and other inspiration and resources on relationships in the Dreaming of Love Series at DreaminSoul.com.
Last year DeVon and Meagan shared their story and advice to other couples and singles at a special service “Kingdom Love” at One Church International hosted by Pastor Touré Roberts (author of the book Purpose Awakening). Watch them share their hearts in a raw and real way below:
More from the Dreaming of Love Series Coming Soon! Be inspired by these posts on Love and Waiting:
A Note from Dream in Soul Editor Julene
God writes the best #Love stories – you don’t have to strive, compare, or hold on to someone who doesn’t treat you how you’re worth. You are worthy not because of the physical or material, anything you did or didn’t but because of Whose you are…
You’re already affirmed by He who wonderfully made you in and for Love. When He desires to bring people together in & on purpose He will do it intricately, strikingly and beautifully beyond anything we can imagine or dream for reasons deeper than we realize. Keep your eyes on Him – He’s our true eternal prize. There is no greater Love. – Julene Fleurmond, Editor of Dream in Soul
More from the Editor’s Journal:
He loves me?
Sometimes experiencing what we call romance in this world leaves us wondering what love truly is. You feel that happy pounding and patter in your chest when he reveals a bouquet of roses and candy. Getting hurt though can peel away the layers of our hearts, like someone plucking the petals from a flower…
Want some more inspiration on Dreams and Purpose? Check out these past Dream in Soul Interviews:
A Shining Living Miracle: Interview & Inspiration from Life Coach & Speaker Evelina Solis of Sol2Soul
Evelina inspires others to surrender to God and live with purpose in the darker places of life…
Tony Snipes, a visual artist and founder of Kreative Kingdom, gives advice to other artists on discovering their creative purpose…
Jenna Lucado Bishop talks about her role on the Revolve Tour and gives advice on God-given dreams and serving Him right where you are…
Kirk Franklin speaks to Dream in Soul about The Blueprint for standing firm in life’s storms…
“God plants dreams in your heart and in your soul for a reason…” – TJ Pompeo
Growing up, TJ Pompeo had a devastating experience that could’ve permanently skewed his spiritual vision. Thankfully, through a myriad of circumstances he realized that the only way to truly see clearly was to keep his eyes focused on the Cross and to give his life and dreams to the One who set him free…
Editor’s Music Pick: Below take a listen to TJ’s song “Tomorrow” (ft. Corbett) about waiting on God’s timing for your life and dreams. It’s one of my personal faves from TJ’s album The Pre View that you can download here for free.
At age 15, TJ embraced his passion for music and started stepping into the rhythm and purpose God placed in his heart by producing and writing songs. As he matured and honed his craft doors started to open for him to share his music on a wider scale. During the summer of 2011, he was discipled by Cross Movement Records group Level 3:16 and embarked on a tour around the nation. Since then, TJ has traveled the world, touring in England, Spain, France, Italy, Japan, Uruguay, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and many more, and he’s had the privilege of sharing stages with many incredible artists like Da T.R.U.T.H. (check out a video of them performing together below).
TJ joins in on Da T.R.U.T.H’s song “Hunger Games” at the Impact12 Conference:
I first came across TJ’s music through the Impact Movement (an amazing organization we’ve been supporting for the past few years on Dream in Soul) and we’ve previously posted TJ’s song with Level 3:16, LOVE. The fresh vibe he brings (he describes as a mixture of hip hop pop, soul and R&B that can’t be put in a box) and sound messages in his music will impact people of all ages. In this candid interview TJ tells us about his journey, overcoming a tough experience in his childhood and how he’s learned to trust God with his life and dreams. Here’s just a preview into what makes his heart – and music – beat…
TJ: Right, so like you said, “TJ” is my artist name and that’s what fans know me by. Everybody who’s known me for a while just calls me TEEJ. TJ is my real name, and it IS short for something, but you’ll only know what the “T” stands for if you’re friends with me on Facebook. =D I’m 22 years young. I’ve got roots in Long Island, NY, but I was raised in the small city of Harrisonburg, VA. I’m all about family, and the one that I have is absolutely amazing. They’ve all been so key in getting me to where I am as a young man and as an artist. I’m also big on family because I’m very Italian. It’s just who we are. One big happy (and loud) family. Along with my family, my friends and my mentors are equally as incredible. They’ve without a doubt been my motivation through life, music and all. They encourage me consistently, and I’m so grateful for them. What else??? Hmmm. I love cheese sticks, having slap-boxing fights with my friends, and collecting rainbow colored gumballs (JUST kidding… Kind of). My favorite show is the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and Denzel is by far my favorite actor. One of my goals in life is to visit all 7 continents. Oh, and I’m a sucker for romantic comedies. Sorry fellas.
Dream in Soul: Can you give some background about your story and how you came to know Christ, how you got started in making music then transitioned to dedicating it to God? Did you start out writing music & producing on your own or were there people instrumental in mentoring you? (Can you also share the significance of the way you write your artist name?).
That’s a long one, but I’ll try to not write a novel. As far as my artist name goes, like you said, there is a story behind the way I’ve decided to spell it. When you think of a capitalized letter, it typically symbolizes something of importance, or something that has significance. Someone’s name, celebrities, the name of a city or state, a type of car, a notable product brand, etc. I decided to make the “t” in my artist name lowercase and the “J” uppercase because I wanted it to symbolize that I have no significance without Jesus. TJ is nothing without Jesus. The “J” in my artist name represents Jesus Christ in me. It’s the only letter capitalized in my artist name because of what I stated above… His name is and always will be more significant than ANY other name to ever exist. My own obviously included. To put it simply… I suck without Jesus.
My story has a very common beginning though. I grew up in church, but never fully understood the concept of actually “walking with” or “following” Christ until I was 18. My life prior to 18 was full of bitterness and anger towards God, mainly due to things that occurred in my upbringing as a little boy.
When I was 8 years old, I was sexually molested by someone who I knew very well. It was absolutely devastating… That event would prove to shape who I would be for the next 10 years of my life. From the ages of 8-13, every single day was a Christian version of Halloween for me. I would wear the mask of Christianity on the exterior to appear like a “good kid,” but on the interior I was angry and I could have cared less about God or Jesus. When I was 14, I decided that I was sick of wearing the mask.. I wanted to live “my” life the way I wanted to live it and ultimately do what I wanted to do. This is also the age where I started experimenting with the typical peer pressures: Party scene, alcohol, drugs, chasing girls, etc. At this time, I also noticed that I really enjoyed the musical genres of Hip-Hop and R&B. All of my family was/is musically inclined (my dad, all three of my older siblings, and all six of my older cousins). They all played a significant role in getting me started with writing music…
A Shining Living Miracle: Interview & Inspiration from Life Coach & Speaker Evelina Solis of Sol2Soul
Overcoming the Odds
It’s not everyday you get to know a living miracle, someone who has overcome great odds and the clutches of the valley of death, and yet who shines even in the darkest of situations. I am blessed to have met and to be inspired by someone who fits that description, my mentor and friend Evelina Solis.
A few years back Evelina was in the hospital clinging to life after being diagnosed with a pulmonary embolism (a near fatal blood-clot). After the long recovery process and when she thought the worst was over she was then diagnosed with lupus, another serious illness which left her in the hospital getting treatments for months, in the ICU for two weeks and even flat-lining at one point.
Contrast that near-death experience to the vibrant woman who is energetically living out her purpose as the founder of her motivational company Sol2Soul, a certified life coach, inspirational speaker and TV/radio personality. Instead of dwelling on her illness and what could have been, Evelina is living out her faith each day and holding on to God’s truth.
Evelina is traveling around the country telling her story of survival, and is supporting Dream in Soul Creative as a model and spokesperson, wearing T-Shirts from our collaborative clothing line when she speaks to students and other audiences. Recently she was on Macy’s Hispanic Heritage Month tour, sharing her story across the country. She’s also featured in the book Aim High: Extraordinary Stories of Hispanic and Latina Women by Laura Contreras-Rowe. She definitely lives out her motto of living life to the fullest, inspiring people to seek and follow their passion while leaving the world better then they found it.
I invite you to read Evelina’s inspiring story and the advice she gives on living out her purpose in the dark and bright places of life.
- Julene Fleurmond, Founder & Editor, Dream in Soul
Living with Passion and Purpose
Dream in Soul: Hi Evelina, Can you introduce yourself to Dream in Soul?
Evelina Solis: Hello Dream In Soul readers, I’m Evelina Solis, Certified Life Coach, Inspirational Speaker and TV/Radio Personality. I love to come into a room full of people and change the atmosphere when the energy is low, peers are unmotivated, or the membership in your organization is down. My purpose is to generate new energy and enthusiasm that will result in increased participation in projects and activities, inspire others to work hard and increase the organization membership. I have a passion for serving and educating people from all walks of life, volunteering at Shoreline Church and charities, bringing awareness to Lupus, traveling the world, playing and watching sports, writing about my adventures, participating in the arts, and spending quality time with my family and friends.
Evelina was featured in a DVD devotional series entitled “The Fight of Your Life” for Shoreline Community Center Church in Austin, TX. She was one of three people who told their story of survival and recovery of serious trials in their lives. Evelina recounted her journey of surviving several life threatening illnesses, and overcoming physical and emotional trauma through her faith in God and the support of her family. Watch a preview of the series below entitled “Surrender”:
DS: Tell us about your journey with your health and where you are today?
ES: My journey with my health has been a roller coaster. Regardless of what my family saw or heard, we kept our faith in God and totally relied on Him for comfort, peace and healing. Back in 2006, I was at the prime of my health, or at least I thought, I was 26 years old working out 5 days a week, training for a marathon, and living the life in Miami, FL.
Then out of nowhere I woke up with a bruise on my left calf that ended up going from size of a dime to the size of a softball within a couple of weeks. After coming back from an awards ceremony at the University of Miami (my workplace), I had trouble climbing up the stairs to my office. I was out of breath and I was running a low grade fever. I ended up going to doctors a few times over the period of a month to find out what I had, but everyone seemed to think if I took some antibiotics that I would be ok. That same day I was rushed to the hospital by my roommate.
I was diagnosed with a pulmonary embolism (PE), a condition that occurs when an artery in your lung becomes blocked by a blood clot that traveled from your left calf into your lungs causing extreme difficulty breathing and severe chest pains. According to Mayo Clinic, PE is the third most common cause of death in the US, with at least 650,000 cases occurring annually. It is the first most common cause of unexpected death in most age groups. It was a miracle to survive that near death experience…
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Author, speaker and ministry leader Tony Snipes helps today’s gifted artisans answer questions about their purpose and creative calling through his initiatives Art Lessons From God and Kreative Kingdom.
“What is it that you love doing that you wouldn’t even have to have anybody pay you for… That’s your passion…the beauty of it would be that if you’re pursuing that and you’re getting paid for it then it’s not even like work.” – Tony Snipes
Be sure to check out the resource links at the end of the interview including a free download of Tony’s audio resource “How To Identify Your Creative Calling: Your CALLING, Your CAREER, Your JOB…What’s The Difference?”
Interview by Julene Fleurmond, founder of DreaminSoul.com
Most everyone has asked these questions:
- Who am I?
- Why am I here?
- What should I be doing?
Artists in particular, from painters to musicians, may ask these questions regarding their gifts:
- Who am I as an artist?
- Why do I have this talent?
- What does God want me to do with it?
Tony Snipes, a gifted artist himself and founder of Kreative Kingdom, Inc. a non-profit faith-based art initiative, began asking these questions and created a resource to help other artists discover their creative purpose.
Tony’s project, Art Lessons from God delves into these questions of gifting and calling. The blog, workshops, books and other resources were created with the goal of helping artists and designers discover God’s purpose and plan for their artistic talent. Watch Tony introduce the site below:
Though the site is targeted toward visual artists it has much insight that could inspire artists of any type from writers and performers to musicians and filmmakers. Many of the topics explored can apply to a variety of arts, like “Anointed versus Talented: What’s the Difference?” to “Discovering a “God” idea vs a “Good” idea.”
Often in our society we acknowledge the “how” regarding talents of individuals but may not always consider the deeper questions involved with “why”. In this interview Tony Snipes discusses his background in the visual arts and gives advice to other artists in figuring out their “why” and God’s purpose for them:
Dream in Soul: Hi Tony, thanks for speaking to me today. Can you tell us a little about who you are: What is your background in art and your profession?
Tony Snipes: Well prior to going into graphic design and illustration I have been drawing and painting all of my life but especially kind of training myself to draw and sketch from my comic books as a kid. So I did a lot of drawing back then, and am professionally trained as a graphic designer – graphic design and illustration…that’s pretty much my professional background with art.
Below is one of Tony Snipes’ pieces entitled “Endure.”
DS: What inspired you to start your website “Art Lessons From God”?
Tony Snipes: What really started challenging me is and kind of pushed me towards starting the site was based on a conversation that I had with a young man back in the late ‘90s. He was an artist as well and he was about to graduate from high school, and was contemplating going to art school or taking something else… We were talking in church and both of us started asking, where is the artist in the Bible?