Tag: dreams

Don’t Marry Your Dream by H Hamilton Comings

… H. Hamilton Comings is a dear friend and mentor of mine. There is great wisdom in connecting with pastors seasoned by life & ministry. This post on dreams is excellent. You can see his blog here

Dreams can be like a marriage. When that happens we are in trouble. Friendships can exist on different levels and can move away leaving space for replacement. Marriages can only end in the grief of death or the bitterness of divorce.

God wants his people to cultivate friendships with dreams. A life void of dreams is a life mired in the swamp of complacency or stranded in the barren waste of apathy. However, when a dream becomes a marriage it has become an idol. This is true whether it is the dream house, the dream of some particular achievement or even a dream of ministry (perhaps the most seductive of all dreams).

Maintaining dreams at the friendship level requires not only the faith to pursue them but also the faith to let them go if God moves in that direction. As friendships they can be passionately owned, but they must not become possessively owned. In departure, their loss can be grieved, but the grief must not be allowed to fester into bitterness.

The faith to release dreams can accomplish two things. It can free our spirit to embrace the friendship of a new dream; and it can open the way for God, in his time, to bring back the released dream in better ways than we imagined. Elijah is an example of the first in his transition from a national prophet to a personal mentor. Moses is an example of the second in his transition from a premature deliverer of his people to a prepared founding father of a nation.

A key factor in this faith to pursue and to release our dreams is the recognition that is not easy. For some reason when something is not easy we tend to conclude it must not be right. The path of faith and obedience is rarely easy, and often it is not instinctively desirable. As with any parting of the ways, there will be the need to mourn. This should not surprise us. However, as with any mourning, there will be the need to get up, wash our face, thank God for the things built into our lives through the departed dream and, then accept the tasks at hand even though, at the moment, they may seem like empty husks.

The important phrase in that statement is, “seem like.” While engaged in those empty husks, we can be surprised by the unexpected visit of a new dream. When that happens we must guard ourselves against the temptation to reject it for fear that it, too, will move away unfulfilled. Wrenched away from home and dreams, Joseph, in the book of Genesis, could not have been the man he was in Egypt had he not cultivated the dream of being a man of honor. The testimony of his experience may give us an insight into the direction all dreams take us. Dreams, as with any God-given friendship, ultimately have as their reason for existence the development of nobility of spirit in our lives. When the great testimonies of Scripture are compared, God is not so much the fulfiller of dreams as the grower of souls.

Take a moment to list the dreams which have befriended you. If, in the making of the list, you find a bitterness of spirit at the memory of ones to which you have said “good-bye,” ask God to give you good and motivating memories of those past friendships. As for the dreams which are still part of your life, make sure none of them are things you “cannot live without.” Ask God for the grace to be passionately energized in your dreams because, above all, you are passionately energized by God himself with or without the dream.

1st Anniversary of twoznek.com: What I love…

It’s hard to believe that this blog project is a year old now! The best advice on blogging: write what you’re passionate about. One area I infrequently mention is a huge passion of mine: Kelly. The Bible guides us to live with our wife in an understanding way. I respect her wish to stay out of the lime light, and will probably get an eye roll for writing this. So, on the one year anniversary of this blog, here is a glimpse into the love of my life.

Kelly brings lavish amounts of joy into our house. She helps us boyz enjoy the little things, love each other and play. There is no greater gift a wife can bring than joy. Life in the Woznek house, both in good and challenging times, is a delight from the radiance she brings.

There is a charm and refinement to our family because of my love. From incredibly detailed birthday cakes and cards, to graceful Thomas track layouts and “You’re not wearing that are you?” Kelly makes us boyz look good and she delights in it. Her quiet spirit lacks no playfulness. In her innocence, don’t think she didn’t play the prank on you. Kelly makes even the simplest things seem like art.

I love holding Kelly. I love watching her hold our boyz. I love times we sit by the fire, or on the couch reading. I love lazy days off when we’re all in our PJ’s cuddling together and laughing. I love the warmth Kelly brings by just being in the room. The softness of her voice, the melody of her laugh and just her presence is unlike anything on Earth.

The bottom line:
I’m head over heels in love with Kelly! God was gracious for allowing me to be with her. This is just a glimpse. Her love of God, her faith, her courage, her dreams, her entire life I adore. She embodies learning and living. Kelly makes life a dream come true.

Why not Wednesday? Less if more

We often say life is a marathon, but we lose sight of that. I am again reminded that life is more about pacing and that sprinting should happen in brief moments. If not, we get ourselves into a sprint crash burn recover, repeat frequently pattern.

God gave us 24 hours a day and 7 days a week to accomplish His will. If we constantly have more to do than we can get done, something isn’t God’s will for us. Think of it this way.

There are 168 hours a week…

To be healthy, God designed an on average need of 8 hours of sleep: 56 hours.

There are now 112 hours a week…

Getting dressed, ready for bed an other needs, let’s say about 2 hours a day: 14 hours.

There are now 98 hours a week… 14 hours a day.

God created the Sabbath for man. It was a day of rest. OT worship largely accomplished during the festivals. At 98 hours a week, or 14 hours a day, 14 hours focused on sabbath…

There are now 84 hours a week…

We need God, relationships, work, rest, leisure…

God designed us to need these things. We’re learning more and more and a non-stop, little sleep, high stressed life style leads to significant health issues: cancer, heart disease, premature aging, chronic fatigue, migraines, etc. All of these things affect our relationships not only with God, but family, co-workers, friends, and people we come in contact with. It’s hard to be a blessing when we are stressed.

The bottom line:
God gave us 24 hours a day and 7 days a week to accomplish His will. Less is more.

“Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.” ~ The Apostle Paul

Linx & Stuff

The Bible says to rejoice with those who rejoice. A good friend of mine, Brian C. Jacobs, is getting to enjoy a dream of his. He recently published his first book: The Enigma Squad: The Case of the Old Man in the Mailbox. Brian dreams for this to be the first in an adventure series called The Enigma Squad.

Reading is important for children. It builds thought, imagination and learning. The Enigma Squad I hope builds and grows an audience. I’ve worked with Brian on a few creative projects. Brian excels at creativity and story telling.

To my friend, Brian: Congratulations & Dream big! As my boys grow older, I hope to one day by a box set of Enigma Squad books for my boys.

If you appreciate reading and know kids who enjoy adventure, check out the links below. What a better way to enjoy Christmas than to sit by the fire and read to your children.





Why not Wednesday? Cursive vs Typing

Apple IIc My first computer

“This report is not acceptable,” said the teacher.

My heart sank quickly. Not acceptable?! My little heart started to pound. I was frustrated. I took the time to jump through all the hoops: brainstorm, rough draft (mine were epic in rough) and final copy. I asked why.

“This paper was typed on a computer,” explained the teacher. “You need to learn how to write effective reports in cursive for college and jobs.”

“But I can’t write neat, I can type faster, and it uses up less paper, saving trees,” I replied quickly. “I don’t understand why my paper is not ok.”

“You must learn cursive. It’s what we use in the adult world,” said the teacher.

Not acceptable
New ideas or the start of a paradigm shift is often given the label “not acceptable.” The teacher’s reply was not acceptable to me. Of course, dad took the teacher’s side, I ended up having to write that paper. Now and then I would attempt the type-written paper, followed by the “please write in cursive” comment. such was Elementary school.

7th Grade
7th grade is a new start, so said the teachers. Great, I thought. My first assignment I walked up to the teacher and handed her two versions of my paper: one typed the other written in cursive.

“I was told in Elementary school reports had to be written in cursive. Which would you prefer?” I asked politely.

“Good, Lord, please type,” the teacher replied.

Legibility is more important than form. I printed my papers, or on tests I used print instead of cursive. The battle was being won. It was a happy day in my life.

9th Grade
At this point in my life my writing would not improve. I did not give my teachers the option, I typed and handed in my reports. Thanks to my English teacher, by typing I could focus more on form, grammar and creativity. Reports during our studies in Shakespeare I wrote in Iambic Pentameter.

This turned into another opportunity. Given my computer usage, I became a part of the “Citizens Technology Forum.” The goal for the group: develop and recommend a plan for technology usage in Middle & Elementary schools. (The High school was not included because of a pending building improvement program that was about to be voted on. It was voted down. Welcome to politics, but that’s another post.)

At the end of the meeting I was allowed to make some comments or observations. My other speaking allowance was to ask questions that did not make sense. My biggest comments was this:


  1. Typing will become more important than cursive.
  2. We should think multiple computers per classroom, not one.
  3. Long term, we should think a laptop per student.

The rebuttals were:

  1. Learning cursive is essential for college and the workplace. (sigh.)
  2. Computer should be for teacher use, and internet may not catch on.
  3. The wiring required for each desk would be prohibitive, not to mention cost per laptop.

The team recommended a solid and helpful plan. It moved the ball forward. The biggest high light for me was a thank you letter sent by my Elementary principal. One summer I ran into him during winter break from college. We laughed at the paradigm shift.

The bottom line:
1) Don’t cringe when the new idea is said to be “not acceptable.” In college & seminary I used a laptop. The biggest statement by all places I’ve worked for: typing & technology ability. Being cutting edge is hard, often considered unacceptable, etc. In time things will come around.

2)Don’t ignore things you say are “not acceptable.” New ideas or breaking into a new area is often unrefined, rough and edgy at first. (This is often from lack of support or advice.) Andy Stanley put it best: “You can fight it, or you can fund it.”

Dream: Living the dream

Faith discovers great dreams. Living the dream is not about amusement, fantasy or having all the answers. Dreams require pursuit to be lived. Living the dream is living by faith. It is the bedrock for both the great and small.

“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.” ~ Hebrews 11:1-2

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” ~ Hebrews 11:6

Will happen, not might
We live for our dream because it will happen. This is not a gamble, this is a reality. It fully understands adversity, but adversity is couched in certainty. As people of history and now passionately pursued God, they know that what is to come will. Dreams exist not in vapors, but in stone. “If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country–a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.” ~ Hebrews 11:15-16

Define great
Living the dream is not about having great things, but doing great things with what you have. Jesus tells a parable of a master who gave his servants Talents (money). To one he gave 5, another 2 and a third 1. The master judged the servants based on what they did with what they had. The servants with 5 and 2 Talents doubled and were blessed. The servant with 1 Talent nothing with it. This angered the master. Everyone will not be great in how society views greatness, but we can all do  great things! (We’re expected to.) Think growth, instead of achievement.

Hidden treasure is worthless
If a man hides a pot of gold and it is never found the gold is worth less than food scraps or dung. Food scraps and dung turns back to dirt and is usable. Such at least does something. Hidden gold does nothing. Living the dream has nothing to do with status or possessions, but everything to do with God. A better day is coming. Until then, what are you doing to pursue that?

Pursuit more than destination
The pursuit of the dream is more important than the destination. If we pursue God, He will lead. You can’t steer a still ship. If you want the dream you have to go for it. God gives to those who pursue. Pick a direction and pursue it. And, know that God will likely change your course. Or, He may not. Either way, we must move.

The Bottom Line:
Live the dream. Don’t worry about what to do or even where to start. Focus on pursuing God and working with what you have where you are at. God will lead. So dream, but don’t hide your ‘Talent.’ Reflect on this though:

“But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.” ~ John 3:21

Dream: You say that I’m a dreamer…

Dreamers pursue God. They are not inward focused, self-serving, trite or vengeful. Dreamers pursue reflecting who God is.

“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” ~ Philippians 1:6

“Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” ~ Philippians 3:13-14

The goal beyond self
We choose our attitude. The book of Philippians focuses on Paul’s attitude. This attitude, and the whole mindset of the book is a passionate pursuit of God. The book is an internal focused book. It is an attitude check. The goal Paul refers to is beyond self. The key is found in Phil 2:5- having the same attitude that was also in Christ Jesus.

Being is the focus

The best dreams are ones that focus on being, not doing. If there is any lesson that is crystal clear in the Bible it is this: we cannot earn favor with God. Doing, achieving, possessing means nothing if we fail to be who God wants us to be. Focusing on who we want to be will have greater impact on what we do. Our attitude affects everything. Dreamers need humility. Great leaders and people in life show this attitude. Focus on being humble. It works! Look at Christ.

God is the dream
Regardless of our history, our present or our future, we get to be with God. This is why our attitude and our focus on being is so important. No matter how good or bad, rich or poor, healthy or ill, we can posses our dream. This is why the best dreams are the ones that focus on being. A slave can be a dreamer. An alcoholic can be a dreamer. A murder can be a dreamer. A single mom can be a dreamer. An orphan can be a dreamer. Dreams are not about our situation but our destination. The Gospel forges our dreams in Christ, not our wishful thinking or our own power.

Why be a dreamer
There is more to life than now. There is more to life than our preferences and whims. Dreams move us beyond ourself. Dreamers pursue being the kind of person God designed us to be in the places He puts us. God did not create us as an afterthought. God does not save people to merely escape Hell. There is a story, a masterpiece that is your life. Pursuing God paints this work of art.

The Bottom Line:

In the craziness of life, no matter how upside down it us, we have a choice: we can pursue self or we can pursue God. God made us to reflect who He is. Perhaps it is time we take God seriously. There is a work that He wants to accomplish in our lives. It starts with an attitude change and a focus on being who He wants us to be. Reflect on this thought:

“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.” ~ Ephesians 3:20-12

Dream: Mr. Sandman…

God is the Sandman, the author and artist of a masterpiece that is you. Dreams are not fairy tales, events, or possessions. Dreams are reflections of God’s glory in and from your life.

“The Lord God formed man of dust from the ground…The Lord God fashioned into a women the rib which He had taken from the man…”
~ Genesis 2:7 & 22

“God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created them male and female He created them. God blessed them and said, ‘Be fruitful and multiply…’”
~ Genesis 1:27-28a

The God who fills things
We believe in the God who fills things. God filled creation, He filled the temple, He filled our days and He fills our very being. God is a designer, an artist, a musician, God is a dreamer. He thrives and exists in community. God is as poetic as He is just. The very concept of dream is rooted in the purposeful creation of you… ‘that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.’

God as creator
The order of creation mirrors and exhibits God’s desire to fill things. Days 1 through 3 God creates the space and then fills it days 4 through 6. Upon His good creation God placed the crown jewel: mankind. From the sand God made us, purposefully, artistically, in community. Mankind was not a blank slate of random chance, God made mankind the visible finite image of the infinite God. He blessed the human race. And God commanded mankind to fill the Earth.

Time to dream
Starting on Day 7 of Creation, God creates the Sabbath. Sabbath, meaning 7th day, also caries the concept of rest. It was time to stop and smell the roses. It was a time to reflect. It was a time to rest. Later in Exodus, Leviticus and Deuteronomy God institutes feasts where His people could celebrate, learn, reflect, teach, and ultimately enjoy Him. The Sabbath and celebrations focuses on one key thing: to remember God. In remembering God, He reminds us of who He wants us to be.

God is the Sandman
The danger of not dreaming is forgetting God. Lack of dreams is not a loss of purpose, a depletion of vision, an absence innovation, busyness or exhaustion. A lack of dream or dreams is forgetting who artistically sculpted you from dust. God forged dreams in the purpose for your life, for you carry His image. And, once in Christ, that purpose, that dream becomes crystal clear. You are not a mistake. God made you. He gave you a dream.

The Bottom Line:
Even with the confusion of life, we must remember God. A dream answers this question: How is my life to glorify God? How is my life to reflect who God is because I carry His image? Whether you naturally dream, are in limbo, are busy, are apathetic, or life has you exhausted, reflect on this thought:

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. ~ Ephesians 2:10

Book Review: Switch by Chip & Dan Heath

Switch by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, writers of Made To Stick, deal with “how to change things when change is hard.” The book shares encouraging stories and a helpful process for change.

Humanity not process
Switch develops a process around the most obvious fact: we’re human! Many change books view change from the perspective of process vs the perspective of people. Reality is, people make or break change more than a process. The greatest benefit of Switch is its process places our humanity into the equation.

Think holistically
The book takes a holistic view to the change process. Too often people like to segment things, avoiding how things connect. Left brain types (stereotypically men) fall into this category. If you’re an left brain type this book will greatly benefit how you enact change.

Elephant riding
Having a change process is more important than no process at all. The book has an interesting intersection of modern psychology and philosophy in is use of the Rider & Elephant metaphor. The metaphor is the foundation for the book and very helpful. Each section has helpful exercises to develop your elephant riding skills.

While the content is solid and helpful, the style of the book is frustrating at best. There are no topic heading in each chapter, just numbers. If you want to use the book as a reference, mark it well. The stories read like a stream of conscious. It is good training and helpful to left brain bullet pointed types, but you will find it frustrating. Being a right brain stream of conscious type, it slightly annoyed me as well. For a book focused on a process of change, the layout and style is not helpful, almost to the extent of being a hindrance.

The stories are inspirational. They are worth reading through and will help you process how change. One thing I struggle with is whether or not the process is really a change process vs the book being about people who were creative in making change happen. This is a broader philosophical discussion but worth noting.

The Bottom line:
If you are left brained analytical type, Switch is a must read. If you are a right-brained creative type, a more analytical book would benefit you more. The book is solid and a change process is better than no process. The greatest strength Switch; it’s holistic. Too often humanity is left out of the equation. Change is as much art as it is science. In fact, I’d say its more art. We are human.