My husband loves to watch “Shark Tank.” If you’ve not seen the show, here are the basics: Entrepreneurs are given the chance to go before a panel of self-made millionaires, (or “sharks”), and pitch their business. The entrepreneurs have to convince one of the sharks to invest the full amount of money in their business in return for equity in that business, or they get nothing.

It’s a pretty interesting show. The panel is full of wise men and women, people who started at the bottom and have made a name for themselves y being business smart. Sometimes the entrepreneurs have great business ideas that are invested in. Sometimes, the ideas are not so great. Some are down right stupid.

For example, recently, my husband watched an episode with a woman who pitched an online dating site. It combined the anonymity of online dating with the idea of handing out a “business card” with information on how to find your profile. There were lost of problems with her business, including the fact that over a 3 year period, she had invested $120,000 of her own money and had gone from having a good solid lifestyle to sleeping on friends’ couches to make ends meet. She was losing money every year.

Every single shark told her that her idea was not going to work and to let the idea go. One went so far as to call her “delusional.” She was so set on her business that she just couldn’t face the reality that it wasn’t working.

This got me thinking. How often do we do this in our lives? How often do we speak to God about ourdreams? We have such a “great idea” about something we want to do. We keep asking God to help us, to prosper it, to give us favor, to propel us forward, to make us a success. I think we often use the “ask and you shall receive” and “he’ll give you the desires of your heart” verses for selfish reasons, when really, our dreams should glorify God. He does everything for the sake of His great name, not ours.

I went to college specifically to be in broadcast journalism and my amazing friend Amy did the same. My desire was to do sports; she wanted to do weather. She was, immediately, put into a position to start learning to be a meteorologist and did the weather live for our 5 o’clock newscast on our PBS station. The girl was good, that’s for sure!

I can’t quite remember how long she spent in that position, taking the communications classes she needed & practicing her on-air skills. Maybe a year and a half, maybe two years? And then, she decided she wasn’t going back. I was so sad that we wouldn’t be working together anymore and, for a moment, I tried to talk her out of the idea of changing her major. I remember asking her why she was quitting, and I’ll never forget her response.

“I’m doing it because I want to be famous, not because that’s what I’m called to do.”

 Whoa! That took some guts to give it up after 2 years of money spent, classes taken & skills learned. She changed her major to Religion and she and her husband are now the youth directors at church.

Weather was her dream, not God’s.

I want to encourage you to stop and take a look at your dreams. Are they just yours? Or are they the dreams God has given you? Take a moment to stand before God in your own shark tank. And, if it’s of God, then take that idea & run with it, no matter how hard it gets. But if He says it’s not working, it’s too risky, it’s not something He wants to invest in, then it’s time to let it go and let Him give you a new dream.

-Whitney