Ever have a school teacher scold you for having your “head in the clouds”? Sure, daydreaming while you should be paying attention is counterproductive, but on the other hand, we all need dreams to be healthy and happy. Having a dream, a goal to accomplish, a project to complete, adds to our sense of purpose and self-worth — which in turn helps to give us hope. And we NEED hope! Without hope we lose spirit and eventually stop truly living. We lose our enthusiasm for life, and we find ourselves just going through the motions of everyday existence, shuffling along mindlessly like one of those zombies in Night of the Living Dead: no heart, no soul.
A physician once told Dr. Norman Vincent Peale a sobering truth: “I have actually seen people die for a lack of enthusiasm. of course, I can’t write that on the death certificate, but the person without enthusiasm can lose the will to live.” (Peale, N.V. Enthusiasm Makes the Difference! New York: Simon and Schuster, 2003; p. 32) This savvy physician had discovered the link between LIFE and ENTHUSIASM.
Forget milk. Got enthusiasm? “Enthusiasm is the electricity of life.” (Gordon Parks, American filmmaker and civil rights advocate; 1912-2006)
Dr. Peale, the founder of the inspirational magazine Guideposts, wrote several volumes on the subject of this great motivator, but he managed to sum up the main idea in a single book title: Enthusiasm Makes the Difference!
“Enthusiasm is the all-essential human jet propellor,” states Dr. Peale. “It is the driving force which elevates men to miracle workers. It begets boldness, courage, kindness, confidence; overcomes doubts. It creates endless energy, the source of all accomplishment.”
Interestingly, the word enthusiasm means “full of God.” Which shouldn’t be too surprising, because after all, it is God who created each of us and then filled us with LIFE. So, to be full of enthusiasm, one must be full of God, the source of abundant life. (John 10:10)
ENTHUSIASM = FULL OF GOD = FULL OF LIFE
The secret to developing enthusiasm is a deep personal faith in the God who Created the Universe. Interestingly, the word enthusiasm is frequently associated with inspiration. Here’s why: Enthusiasm is intense and eager interest or zeal in pursuit of a cause or objective; but enthusiasm is also defined as a divine source of supernatural inspiration.
The word inspiration means:
- A breathing in, as of air in the lungs
- A stimulus to creative thought or action
- A prompting of something spoken, written, or accomplished
- (In general) an inspiring influence; (specifically) a divine influence
- A Theol: a God-sent supernatural source of guidance upon human beings, such as that resulting in the writing of the Scriptures.
To further clarify, enthusiasm is the excitement, energy and renewed interest we experience from a divinely-inspired flow of brilliance, creativity, or timely ideas.
This essential idea underscores just about everything we’ve covered in Boot Camp for Creators & Dreamers. We designed this course to inspire and motivate people to accomplish their goals, pursue their dreams, and fulfill their greatest hopes and aspirations. Learning what God has planned for you, and working toward that future, will generate intense enthusiasm, filling each new day with fresh and exciting possibilities. It’s an intensely motivating experience.
“How do you go from where you are to where you wanna be? …I think you have to have an enthusiasm for life. You have to have a dream, a goal. And you have to be willing to work for it.” (Jim Valvano, NCSU Basketball coach and broadcaster, 1946-1993)
Enthusiasm comes from a positive, faith-filled, optimistic attitude toward life (the God-centered Judeo-Christian Worldview we recently discussed). It is a supernatural byproduct of choosing to embrace God, love life, and always see the best in people and circumstances. Jesus said, “…I came that [My
followers] may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows].” (John 10:10 AMP)
Being enthusiastic is being fully alive. It’s knowing that “the joy of the Lord is your strength and your stronghold.” (Nehemiah 8:10 AMP) Being enthusiastic is being grateful for each new day. It’s never losing that wide-eyed sense of wonder and excitement for the world God created; or that child-like faith that still believes miracles happen everyday.
To Be Continued….