Do Your Passions Look Like A Hooptie, Or A Ferrari?
I believe there are 3 different types of situations when it comes to ideas, passions and future plans.
These things are your vehicle in which you get out your message. They can consist of such a wide variety of general and very unique possibilities. Your vehicle could be cooking, or teaching, or music. Your vehicle can be something very generic like ‘Art’, or can be very specific like ‘drawing & painting portraits of famous individuals for auctions and fundraising efforts’, similar to some of the things my friend James-Michael Smith @ Disciple Dojo does. Whatever it is that you are passionate about, that is your vehicle. You may have 1 vehicle or many…some of you may have no vehicles at all (and, if that’s the case, I encourage you to get one by becoming passionate about something!).
Now, here are the 3 different types of ‘vehicle’ situations that I’ve encountered – and they list from worst, to best:
1. “The Hooptie”. These are the people that have things they like, but don’t actually possess a passion for. Similar to what I mentioned earlier, these are people either without a vehicle at all (no passion for anything) or they have a vehicle but they don’t treat it well – meaning, they’re not passionate about it. They don’t dig deeper to improve their vehicle. They don’t use it much. It just sits in the garage as something they have and start up occasionally. But as we know with “Hoopties”, they are usually broken down more than they are running!
2. “The ‘Regular Unleaded’ Ferrari”. These are the people that have the passion, they’ve gotten their mind wrapped around what they want to do and how. These people work daily to improve upon their passions and are very focused on getting better. They have the right vehicle…and they feel good about it. They’ve answered the “what?” and “how?” questions – but they fall short on the “why?” questions. Listen – right now…I actually drive a 1995 Jeep Wrangler. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Jeep and have had it for about 13 years now. But I drive around looking for the cheapest gas that I can possibly find to keep it fueled. After all: it’s a jeep….it’s built for rugged use! 🙂 — But we’re talking about having a Ferrari as the ‘vehicle’ to represent our passions (or a Lambo, or Mazarati…whatever is your idea of the best vehicle to represent your passions!) — and would you put ‘Regular Unleaded’ in a Ferrari?! I don’t think so. Because even though it will indeed fuel your Ferrari for a little while – it will eventually die out and you’re left with the best looking car that never leaves the garage!
And that leads us to our 3rd, and best type:
3. “The High Octane Ferrari”. Just like in #2, you have the right ideas (the ‘what?’ and ‘how?’) – But now you are actually fueling your vehicle with the right type of fuel! You’re answering the question of ‘why?’. Now this doesn’t mean that any-‘ol-answer will do….just like any-‘ol-fuel will keep your Ferrari running and in good condition. The answer to ‘Why?’, just like the type of fuel you use, is what will determine the quality in which your passion (vehicle) will last. In my opinion, this is where many fail. This is where you see so many great ideas and so many great practitioners driving their vehicles on the road (and many start off just great!)….but then you eventually see these ideas die, plans fail…and proverbial ‘vehicles’ broken down on the side of the road. And it’s because they didn’t have the right FUEL…they didn’t have the right answer to “Why?”. Why are your passionate about this? Why do you wish to start this project? Why? Why? Why? — we can have the greatest ideas in the world, and have the most possible passion towards them – but without the proper fuel to keep them running efficiently, they eventually will break down and just become something you talk about.
Now with that said, I can’t answer the “Why” for you. Just as much as I can’t tell you what you passions are. This is your proverbial ‘vehicle’ to build and your proverbial ‘fuel’ to instill. What I can do, though, is tell you about mine:
I have 2 vehicles that I’m most passionate about: helping serve those in the developing world whom were not afforded the same opportunities as me – and spreading the Martial Art that I love of “Brazilian Jiu Jitsu” (BJJ). These are my 2 vehicles in which I’ve worked to develop into 1…my “Ferrari”. I’ve long dreamt of taking my love for BJJ and spreading it’s life-changing disciplines throughout the developing world and into places that it’s never been introduced – using it as part of my vehicle to make human connections and influences throughout even the smallest and rural of towns. I’ve gotten to use my vehicle locally (in ‘at-risk’ kids ministry, where we’ve talked about social issues followed by teaching them BJJ) and around the world (the most significant being my “Submissionary” trip to Ethiopia, introducing BJJ in the larger city of Addis Ababa & even more remote cities of Shire – in Northern Ethiopia).
This is my vehicle. These are the 2 things in which I’m best able to communicate and deliver my deepest passions. These are my very unique and specific passions, under the broader passion of “developing personal relationships & influences with people – and being a witness to the ends of the earth”.
…And the fuel for my vehicle?
Well that’s simple: I’m fueled by God. I’m fueled by the Good News – The Gospel – that’s proclaimed in the New Testament. My vehicle may not be: Preacher, or Missionary, or Pastor, or Evangelical. –Certainly not in the literal context. But though my vehicle is different, I am fueled with the highest quality of fuel that you will ever know: the Holy Spirit. I don’t say this to preach to you, and in fact I don’t preach much at all. Not with words anyway. I enjoy preaching with my actions – Preaching with the quality of my vehicle. I absolutely love being engaged on my faith and enjoy talking about it with solicited ears. But ‘Preacher’ just doesn’t happen to be my vehicle.
- Identify your high-quality vehicle
- Put the right kind of fuel in it
- Get On The Road!