The First Step

Have you ever wanted to do something but weren’t sure of the first step to take? First steps can be scary and uncomfortable. Doing something new can evoke all kinds of insecurities, doubts and questions.

If this is something God is calling me to do, will He really help me do it?

What if other people don’t believe in me?

What if I fail?

I’ve asked these questions. I’ve been afraid to do many of the things God has called me to do. But one thing that’s given me great courage is having people in my life who speak God’s Truth to me on a regular basis. The more we hear the Truth the less loud Satan’s discouraging lies are.

One of those people is my Pastor, Steven Furtick, who you heard from in yesterday’s video interview. We’ve been talking about his new book, Greater. It’s an amazing message filled with Biblical perspectives and rich teaching from the prophet Elisha.

In today’s interview, Pastor Steven is unpacking how to take that first step in whatever God is asking you to do today. Maybe you are supposed to teach a Bible study this fall or consider going on a mission trip. Or maybe yours is more of an internal act of obedience, like have a new attitude toward someone or saying you’re sorry.

Whatever it is, there’s such good advice in today’s video interview. One of my favorite quotes? “It’s not what I do–it’s the heart I do it with.”

So, watch the video and leave me a comment below. I’m giving away three signed copies of Greater!

And the winners of last week’s give away are Melissa Chambers, Jennifer Rasor, and Elisha Morris. Please send your mailing address to jennie@proverbs31.org. Congrats!


  1. Lori says

    “The blessing that we’re asking for is usually wrapped up in an instruction that we’re not currently following.” This spoke volumes to me. It is time to get my “shovel” out and start digging some ditches.

  2. Jacqlyn Estes says

    I really enjoyed watching and listening to this interview. Something Pastor Steven said about “How do I get this on the every day level?”, is something so true to me and my walk in faith because I daily seem to struggle to know what God’s desire is for me. Just hearing about digging ditches, I am amazed at how that small thing opened my heart to a different understanding with God. I struggle to know what those ditches are daily, or what God is calling me to start with yet hearing that maybe God is calling me to do the small things like just memorizing a scripture can be a ditch. I so deeply desire to do whatever it is God wants me to do but honestly I get stuck because I don’t always hear what God is saying. I am so encouraged by this and hoping this book can really open my eyes to understanding at a deeper level. Thanks!

  3. Stephanie Ryker says

    I began reading “Greater” last night. I love Pastor Furtick’s quote of “Igniting God’s vision starts with becoming more acutely aware of God’s presence in your life.” My husband is a list maker and just today he was in my office with his to-do list of things he needed to check off today. I think I keep a more mental check-list of my to-do items. When I saw Craig’s list today the Spirit spoke to me, “Just like a Christian – Go to church – check, read my bible – check, attend conferences – check, family devotionals – check” I quickly remembered the verse from Galatians 5:16 “Walk in the Spirit” – Walking in the Spirit – no spiritual checklist allowed.
    Be blessed Lysa & Pastor Steven, thank you both for boldly teaching God’s word.

  4. Julie Howard says

    To leave Elevation’s website and Pastor Furtick’s sermon series “I know He is but what am I” and come to your devotion today just to find him again. God is using this man in HUGE ways. He blessed me through his Greater Day webcast, he’s blessed me through his sermons, he blessed me through your devotion. You have an AWESOME pastor Lysa! I just sent Elevation a testimony of what God used Pastor Furtick to do for me and I pray it encourages him to press in even more. He has God’s annointing all over him. I can not WAIT to get my copy of Greater! Thanks for sharing a message that only added to what God has already spoke to me through Pastor Furtick. Love y’all so much!

  5. Kristin King says

    I love Steven’s point about us doing the preparation and the natural then God can do the supernatural. By me sitting on the sideline waiting for God to perform his miracle, I may just be delaying God’s blessings upon me because I will not prepare things for him.

  6. morla-gail graham says

    Just listerning minister to me one thing that struck me is that you do not have to be recknoized fro something you are doing i would llike to get a copy of this book because for yrs i have been trying to make it yrs i started a programme for students who cannot read i only have 3 students and instead of it growing it remain the same when parents have to pay me at times i have to wait 2 months and i end up in a situation of have not stagnant cannot go nowhere so i am looking forward to read this book

  7. Kelsey Clevenger says

    I came to your blog today specifically to get in touch with you about your thoughts on how to reach my dreams. I have been so touched and blessed by the video interview with Pastor Steven and the message in his book, Greater.
    So often, the enemy lies and tells me I am not a good enough writer and will never be a speaker….who am I? Really?! Who am I not to share what God has placed on my heart to write/speak about. I was so encouraged by this message.
    Do you have 15 minutes so I can pick your brain a but and also hear your journey to becoming an author either via email or phone?
    Quickly, so you know where I am coming from….
    I just moved to Moscow, ID 7 weeks ago when I accepted the assistant children’s ministry position at the church I went to during college (graduated 2009, I’m currently 25 y/o). It is INCREDIBLE being back here at Real Life. I am currently leading a workout group 2x/week (am a certified personal trainer) as part of my ministry and am planning to lead a Finding Balance with Food group/bible study after the women’s ministry board gets to discuss it. I think I am digging my ditches. Or, hoping I am digging the right ones 🙂 My heart is to help women gain the freedom from body image and food issues that I have struggled with but God has redeemed. I so desperately want women to love their bodies for what they can do, not for what we look like. Your book, Made to Crave, helped me in my journey and I was honored to lead a Make to Crave for Young Women study before I moved to Idaho.
    At the very least, I would love some insight on the book I know I am called to write. I feel disobedient because I am scared and don’t know what to do next. Please let me know if you have 15 minutes in your busy schedule to help me reach my dream and share my story with young women. My email is k.clevenger@hotmail.com or kelsey@liferotp.com
    Thank you so much!

  8. Colleen Orozco says

    I am praying to be blesss with this amazing book…dream bigger–I said if I could just be married and have a Godly marriage I would be content…well that is great but God has bigger and He is taking me now to Thailabd somewhere I only dreamt of visiting. Start smaller—words of wisdom for small is the building blocks to greater…being able to see, touch, smell, taste& hear God in all things…this is going to be a phenomenal book and a blessing to everyone’s walk with Christ Jesus….

  9. Kara says

    My husband and I would love to read the book – especially like the idea of studying about Elisha! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

  10. jamie marlow says

    So happy to find this site. Exactly the situation I’m struggling w and needed advice &I encouragment. Thank you!

  11. Ruth says

    Thank you for sharing. God’s message to me these last couple of months have been to dream again. This has and is difficult for me…I guess several important dreams have not come to fruition. The analogy of digging ditches encourages me today. God has called me to follow paths that don’t make sense to me but I am hopeful that He has me exactly where I need to be. I am also hopeful that he will help me dream again.

  12. Rebecca Tyndall says

    I am greatly encouraged! I loved the quote that you mentioned as well–it does all come back to the heart! 🙂

    Prayers and blessings,

  13. Carol Senn says

    Wow. Right before I saw this interview, I had just prayed and told God that all I desire is to be in His will. I came home sick from work today and was feeling discouraged over whether or not the job I’m in is where I’m really supposed to be for the next twenty
    years. About seven years ago, when I was a mom of two small children and not working at the time, I was involved in teaching adult Sunday school with my husband and even writing lessons for our class. I loved the time spent digging in His word and teaching all the Spirit had revealed. When I went back to work and we both found ourselves with new responsibilities, I am left wondering what happened? I have not written or taught in
    years. I know the obedience is key. God has worked a huge miracle in my life through my obedience. The question I have now is, with the craziness of a full time job and one teen and one preteen, where and how do I begin this next journey? I think there are a few books on my must get list! 🙂

  14. S Reed says

    I love how one thing – finding and reading Made to Crave – had led to so many other things (and new authors) Every day I find another piece to my life that I didn’t realize was missing.
    I want to be obedient…that’s where I have to start!

  15. Raegan says

    I found this link being a part of Melissa Taylor’s Online Bible Study group. First, I have to say I love when God leads me to a link or a story and there is a message waiting that changes my whole mind set. Only God can do something that amazing. I took a bold step a couple of weeks ago and got pretty far in this local singing competition and then didn’t make it to the final round. I was pretty upset because I’ve been leading worship at my church for a few years now and I feel strongly that God is calling me to use this gift in church but also outside of church as well, and with lots of encouragement from friends and family I went through all these rounds in this competition for what seemed, at the time, like “nothing”. I couldn’t tell if they just didn’t like the Christian music I sang or if I was just flat out not good enough, but I’m starting to see that either way God obviously shut the door. Hearing Steven say in this video that God is calling us to dig ditches tells me that I just need to keep on using my gift and when God has cultivated that character trait he so desires, BIG DREAMS can happen. I can’t wait to read this book. I know it has the power to change a mind set and allow the blessings from God to flow freely. Thanks for the video and inspiring message.

  16. Jennifer says

    Its on my next reading list! So excited. We have to prepare for His miracle to take place. Good word!

  17. Carol Costello says

    Wow!!! Dig the ditches today!!!! His examples were spot on!! God doesn’t send the rain until we dig the ditch!!! Small digs result in bigger blessings!!! Love this!! Can’t wait to read!!! Big Love!

  18. Cindy says

    Encouragement to me. There are times I don’t always see God’s big picture, but knowing I’m digging one of those trenches is a reassuring feeling. To me working with our children is one of the most important “trenches to dig”. Thanks for some great insight. Blessings to you and your church.

  19. Laura says

    For years I’ve been feeling that God is calling me to a bigger dream. Thanks for the encouragement. I have to get this book.

  20. jamie marlow says

    So needed this message. Exactly what I’m experiencing now. Thanks for the message &it encouragement!

  21. Catherine Shepard says

    Lysa, I just love it when someone takes God’s word and applies it to my everyday life. The women I’ve read at Proverbs 31 have a wonderful calling to be able to do that. God called me to dig into His word again this past August and every verse that jumps out at me is about getting to know Him thru what Jesus tells us about God in His word. The online bible studies have been a great way to delve into areas of His word for a specific purpose or area. Now I need to ask, what is the next step? Perhaps Greater will help to guide me in the proper direction. Thanks for all your wonderful sharing and sharing your pastor with us.. Blessings to you both.

  22. Catherine says

    Lysa, I love how you can take God’s word and make a practical application of it; sharing how if affected you and your life and what it can mean in mine. I believe when I took Melissa’s challenge to get into God’s word and started with Psalm one – there was a message for me to dig deep into God’s word. Then when we started studying the book of John it was there over and over again, chapter after chapter – get to know who Jesus is, get to know God, dig deep into His word and he will reveal Himself to me. Perhaps the insight in Greater is what will guide me to the next step or to newer insights. Blessings to you both.

  23. Lori says

    I love Elevation church and I know God speaks to me through pastor Furtick. I am closer to God than I ever have been, but I admit my self esteem is still not where it should be. When the church called for mentors a couple weekends ago, I couldn’t help feeling that those kids deserved someone better than me, more energetic, cooler, more. I know that God can use me if I follow Him. I want to not talk myself out of it anymore. I want to be who God made me to be. I want to be greater. I’m looking forward to reading this book.

  24. Mandi says

    CAN NOT wait to read this book!! I so never thought that I was digging trenches for what my come but oh how that is so true and such a great analogy.

  25. lacey poag says

    greater. this is just what the Lord has been placing on my heart! I am looking forward to diving in this book and sharing it with my Woman’s Bible study!

  26. Tracey says

    This is such good conversation and something I have been learning for myself for several years now. It starts with “be still” and it ends, well, it doesn’t! And, I love it! He just keeps calling me up the next rung of the ladder of obedience. Blessings and joy rain down when you climb for God. I hope that my faith keeps me digging ditches for Him all day, every day. No matter where my Air Force husband’s job takes me (and believe me–I feel I’m in a desert place right now in the middle of a drought.) But, He’s promised if I’ll just keep doing what He asks, He’ll be with me, his Blueprints of Prosper in His hands. I don’t have to worry…just go.

  27. says

    It is interesting how everything seems to work together for good when we follow God’s teachings and commands. Today’s video message ended with being obedient to God. Which is very true. It ties in beautifully with the new study that my home church is beginning this week called “Living on the Edge” by Chip Ingram. In Romans 12:1 we are told to present our bodies as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God which is our spiritual service of worship. We are to be obedient. God only wants us and he wants all of us. I am learning that as I surrender and “put my all in” then I can be GREATER. I am able to get out of God’s way and allow him to do what he created me to do. I finished “Unglued” in August and I am now looking forward to read “Greater” in September. Thank you for your faithfulness and willingness to be transparent.

  28. Erica Black says

    Thanks for sharing this encouragement… Sometimes when u lose focus and things dont seem to be moving it can get discouraging…God is Big and he knows the plans He has for me… The question has bern at times is there something i can do now.. Whats going on? I have to Trust God that He is moving

  29. Tricia Selka says

    I can’t wait to read this book! I am currently reading (almost finished) with Sun Stand Still. I have been going to an Elevation extension site in Norwalk, Ohio for over a year and have learned SO much! I have a LONG way to go, but am so thankful for Pastor Steven and Holly!

  30. marianne says

    I need this. I need this. I am so grateful for you all. God is working in me and I know it. I cannot wait to do what He asks and watch . I am listening and I am obeying. It makes no sense- I am hurting- He will do great things. Yeah, through us that OBEY and Listen. Amen. thank you.

  31. Kristen says

    Wow…I love this video! I love listening to the two of you talk. Such powerful and life changing messages.Thank you for sharing and i cannot wait to see what God will do in my life through this message!

  32. Cassi says

    Hey Lysa!

    This is my first time on your site! I recently started reading your book “Made to Crave,” which I love by the way, and I noticed the back of the book mentioned you had an online daily devotional! So on my search to find your devotional, I stumbled upon this post! I know it was a complete God thing! I was completely astonished (and slightly jealous) to hear that Steve Furtick is your pastor! A friend of mine gave me his sermons to listen to a few months back and I have been listening to them pretty faithfully! I actually listened to two of them yesterday:)! All this to say, I am excited to explore your site more!!!

    Also, this post and video really spoke to me, especially the part about dreaming big, but walking in obedience in the little things today. I recently graduated from college in the Spring. To make a long story short, I am currently taking care of a hurt mom. I am grateful to be able to help my mother in this time of need, but I have no idea what the future will hold after she is healed. I have never had any strong career dreams. All I have ever wanted is to be a wife and mother, so I have always done what God has called me to do for that season in my life. This video was a great reminder to be obedient to what God wants me to do now, even if it doesn’t seem like it is getting me closer to any career or future decisions because He is building my character and making me the person He wants me to be. He has everything under control and all I can control is how I live in the present. So thank you and Steve for allowing God to use you both in my life!

  33. Katie says

    I saw your tweet earlier today about this video and as soon as I read the blog, I knew this word was for me, for today…I am facing HUGE life-changing decisions that I am seeking God’s heart and perfect will about…as tears roll down my face I am thankful that God has every detail orchestrated, even if He doesn’t share them with me…my job is to be obedient! Thank you for speaking a very timely truth into my life today…I’m definitely getting this book!

  34. Juli says

    I love the imagery of the ditch digging. I hate digging ditches. Whether for real or in my life. But the results are usually fantastic. When I dig a ditch and grab out my shovel, I usually start with complaining and murmuring. I complain and gripe about the situation. I’m usually asking my husband if there is anyone else to help him!

    But when we get done, my shoulders and arms hurting from all the shoveling and scooping, the bending over, the lifting up. I hurt, I’m sore, but I feel great! I feel great because we finished, because we accomplished what we needed to accomplish.

    I hate hard work. But I love the results of it. That’s the way I’ve been with God lately. I hate the hard work that needs to be done. But although parts of me are sore because He moves me to continue to dig, I feel great when the ditch if finally done. Then I can rest and know that He is bringing the rain.

    My ditch lately? Looking up verses in relation to Faith. That’s been the ditch He’s asked me to dig….but I’ve been delaying…finding other things to do. Time to get back to ditch digging. Time to get back to obedience.

    Thank you, Lysa & Steven, for this great lesson!

  35. Melani Names says

    Truly enjoyed the webcast! Pastor Steven Furtick did a fantastic job addressing a group of women! I am going to read Unglued and then begin reading Greater!

  36. says

    Thank you so much for this. Love Pastor Furtick – my sister-in-law’s family goes to Elevation and I go when we visit them in Matthews. Love your blog and books. Such a blessing. Needed this kick in the heine to re-visit the book God is asking me to write. Pastor Furtick’s series on Fear helped and now this. What’s a girl gonna do, but obey?!? 🙂 “The blessing that we’re asking for is usually wrapped up in an instruction that we’re not currently following.” Hit me like a 2×4 in the head. Gotta love the Holy Spirit kickin’ us in the backside when we need it. Thanks for being His obedient vessel.


  37. Penny says

    Thankyou for this interview. I could really use this book. God has been dealing with me about the friendships or hanging out with non christians. And not being salt and light I am not strong enough right now to be a witness and to win them over and be salt and light So God told me 3 times not to go down there so this book talk about goal and first steps and I think for me the first step is to not go down there. Also I have been try to memorize the Word for a long time and just can’t seem to remember it. When your Pastor said just one scripture and take that it seem so easy to me why did not I think of this instead of try to remember whole books at a time. Also I was talking with my sister and it just confirmed what she said about liviing out or being a doer of the Word . Taking one area of the Bible or the truth of the Bible and living it out. It does no go to just read the word but to live it out. Thankyou for letting me share with you what is on my heart right now I could share more writing about what God is doing in my heart is one of my passions.

  38. Aby says

    I wonder how God knew I needed the message. I am so blessed as The First Step has directly spoken to the circumstances I am in. Thanks 🙂