Welcome to Part 2 of “Slaying the DRAGONS of Your Dreams”. In Part I, we learned about the adversarial nature of the DRAGONS and how they conspire to thwart the purpose and design of your life. The DRAGONS are experts of camouflage, disguising themselves prudence and pragmatism. The reality, however, is that the DRAGONS are liars. Even when they tell you facts, it is not the truth. The DRAGONS’ intention is to throw you off of your path of influence. The good news, however, is that the DRAGONS do not have the last word. You have a choice to listen to their litany of self-limiting beliefs or to tap into a transcendent truth. That truth is that you were built for the KINGDOM.
Many of us, especially those of us of the Christian faith, speak of the kingdom. But, to what exactly does it refer? It is the Kingdom of God. Think of it this way. God created you for a purpose. That purpose is different for each of us. But, ultimately, we all share a common one: to advance the Kingdom of God. We do that by listening and following the directions that God gives us to authentically connect with Him and with other people.
The systems of our world are not predicated on the Kingdom mindset. Our world systems are primarily built upon the DRAGONS’ philosophy of self-centered idolatry.
The Kingdom mindset espouses “we”. The DRAGONS focus on “me”.
The Kingdom mindset encourages giving. The DRAGONS speak of taking.
The Kingdom mindset enlists servants. The DRAGONS draft dictators.
In his excellent book, The Upside Down Kingdom, author Donald Kraybill portrays how the Kingdom of God is truly antithetical to the social constructions of our day. By leaning into these countercultural truths, we draw our strength from God rather than ourselves. We learn humility. We renew our mind. We understand that the weapons of our warfare are not of this world.
In Part I, we outlined the DRAGONS’ nature and the seven lies they tell. But, here we highlight the KINGDOM as an acrostic that gives a God-centered response to the DRAGONS and the seven truthful affirmation to help you withstand the DRAGONS’ onslaught and ignite your dreams.
Seven Truths to Ignite Your Dreams [KINGDOM]
Truth #1: KNOWLEDGE’s truthful affirmation “You were created in the image of God to do great works. The power that is within you is far greater than the powers against. You already have within you the victory you seek.”
The DRAGONS’ attack nearly always starts with DOUBT. DOUBT, more specifically Self-DOUBT, is the head of the DRAGONS. Its’ goal is to get you stuck between belief and disbelief. DOUBT will tell you that your dreams are impossible—just too unrealistic.
[K] KNOWLEDGE – KNOWLEDGE extends beyond facts, statistics, and that which can be observed by the five senses. KNOWLEDGE taps into that sixth sense—that fundamental belief and confidence in who you were made to be. You have a unshakeable KNOWLEDGE of your self-worth because you know the treasure that lies within you.
Truth #2: INSIGHT’s truthful affirmation sounds like this “I am not defined by that hurt. But, I take power over it to empathize and help someone who is struggling.”
The DRAGONS use REGRET to keep you focused on the disappointments of your past rather than the promise of your future. Left unchecked, this disappointment can devolve in to full-blown depression.
[I] INSIGHT – This KINGDOM mindset acknowledges the pains of the past with a lens of redemption. The KINGDOM mindset asks how that disappointment or hurt be channeled into a constructive rather than a destructive force? By asking this question, one gains INSIGHT into how the past pain connects to a greater glory. It usually isn’t easy. But, the KINGDOM uses your past to guide you moving forward—unstuck.
Truth #3: NOVELTY’s truthful affirmation against APATHY is “God is doing a new thing in you. He’s renewing your mind. Yes, new levels bring new devils. But, your latter years will be greater than your former ones. So, be strong and courageous.”
The DRAGONS’ next lie is that of APATHY or indifference—seeking to trap you in a comfort zone of indecision.
[N] NOVELTY – This KINGDOM attitude is based on renewal. While APATHY focuses on the mundane, the KINGDOM pushes you into the unfamiliar. I call it the Discomfort Zone. Growth happens in the Discomfort Zone because it demands our attention and focus. Yes, it taps into our fears. But, by facing these fears we become better and stronger people. Our dreams start to take shape.
Truth #4: GRACE’s truthful affirmation sounds like these words from famed holocaust survivor, Corrie Ten Boom, notes ”God takes our sins—past, present, and future, and dumps them in the sea and puts up a sign that say ‘no fishing allowed.“
The DRAGONS’ next strategy is GUILT. They want you to ruminate on the this guilt sentiment until you are overwhelmed with a sense of shame and hypocrisy. The DRAGONS want to leave your self-confidence in shambles—knowing that if they succeed your dreams will go unrealized.
[G] GRACE – The KINGDOM mindset, however, meets GUILT with GRACE. Rather than accepting the condemnation that the DRAGONS are pushing your direction, the KINGDOM fosters conviction of wrong-doing. This conviction paves the way for GRACE to be freely received and given.
Truth #5: DEFERENTIAL’s truthful affirmation sounds like this famous quote from inspirational speaker Zig Ziglar “You can get everything you want in life if you help enough others get what they want.”
The DRAGONS then introduce OBSTINANCE to render you inflexible and stubborn to change. No one’s opinions are feelings are prioritized more than your own.
[D] DEFERENTIAL – The KINGDOM’s counter response to OBSTINANCE is being DEFERENTIAL to others. Rather than stubbornly insisting on having things your way, the KINGDOM mindset seeks collective input. The KINGDOM mindset acknowledges that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Being DEFERENTIAL is to resist self-aggrandizement in favor of servant-heartedness.
Truth #6: The truthful affirmation of being OTHER-centered sounds like this “You are the answer to a prayer that someone is crying to God right now. As you decrease, God’s ability to use you to touch them increases.”
As you’ve likely gleaned the DRAGONS want you to be the center of your universe. Like the greek myth of Narcissus who died staring at a reflection of his own beauty, such is the DRAGONS’ desire for you. The problem, of course, is that your purpose is not about you—certainly not only you.
[O] OTHER – In the KINGDOM culture, it is the OTHER that is the focus. The KINGDOM combats NARCISSISM with a challenge to consider the needs of OTHERS, and promote their strengths. The KINGDOM shifts focus away from you in order to build you. That is the irony.
Truth #7: The truthful affirmation of MUCH sounds like this “Everything that you need, God will supply. Everything.”
The last of the DRAGONS is SCARCITY. It is the most deadly because it it tell you that you never have enough even during times of abundance. Never enough time. Never enough resources. Never enough beauty or talent. This list just goes on and on.
[M] MUCH – The KINGDOM is about abundance. Rather than the zero sum game that the DRAGONS play, the KINGDOM mindset encourages you to see how MUCH is truly available to provide for everyone’s needs. God has all power in His hands and with Him by your side you have MUCH. You have all of the strength, talent, beauty, and resources that you need. The KINGDOM mindset reminds you that it is not by your abilities that your purpose will be achieved. It is a divine revealing of God’s MUCH.
Many of us shrink at the DRAGONS’ fire. The DRAGONS aim to leave us as fragmented people that live our lives in a chronic state of lack and negativity. Glass half empty type of people.
The truth, however, is that we are KINGDOM dwellers that were created to do good works that glorify God and honor our neighbor. My prayer is that these seven truthful affirmations arm you with the weapons to slay the DRAGONS and ignite your dreams.
How do you see these truths playing out in your own pursuit of influence? I would love to hear about the easy and challenging parts of your battle.
Let me know if there is anything I can do to encourage you to see that you are more than a conqueror.