As Christ-followers, we are not immune from seeing a God-sized dream go from boom to bust.
But in God's hands, a broken dream can morph into something even more beautiful.
This was the case for creative digital storyteller Phil Vischer, founder of Veggie Tales at age 21, and later TellyJelly.
Today, we will explore how Phil’s dream took off, and in a later post, we will see how he found hope (and a new perspective on God) when his dream went bust.
As a child, Phil was always creative, and he loved to read about filmmaking. His father gave young Phil access to artistic tools, and trade magazines on filmmaking. His grandfather let him use his film camera.
A dream is born
When Phil was sixteen, he wanted to become a digital storyteller. His dream was exemplified in the original slogan for Veggie Tales: “Sunday morning values with Saturday morning fun.”
He thought God's dream for him was to become the next Walt Disney. Because of his strong Christian background, Phil thought he needed to do something big for God.
Does the idea of "doing something big for God" sound familiar?
In 1993, he started Veggie Tales with three people, and not much money. After 12-18 months, Veggie Tales quickly grew into a “big deal.” Suddenly, Phil was being interviewed by The Wall St. Journal, and People magazine.
By 1998, there were 150 people working on Veggie Tales.
Phil thought it was God’s will for him to be like his childhood idol, Walt Disney. He was in his late 20s, and he thought God wanted him to hire all these people to help with marketing etc. He was terrified he was going to drive God’s dream into the ground.
At the time, Phil didn't ask whether it was God's dream for him to be the next Walt Disney.
He felt intense pressure to not fail. He couldn't share his fear of failure with anyone, so he kept it to himself. His physical, emotional and spiritual health suffered.
Sales grew, and everything looked great, until it unraveled in bankruptcy court, where Phil saw every song and character he had worked on being sold off.
This post is inspired by an interview with Phil Vischer I heard a few years ago. I admire Phil's faith and trust even as his story haunted me because he showed how easily we can turn a God-focused dream into a self-focused one. Click here to listen to Part 1 of Phil's interview "Finding Hope After Your Dream Dies..."
Are you ever tempted to think/feel you must "do something big for God?" What touches you about Phil's story?
Because God specializes in redemption, my next Dream Series post will be on how Phil finds hope when his dream went bust. Hope you will join me. It will be encouraging.
Counting with Ann:
- Worshipping God with other believers this Sunday
- Being reminded of God's desire to be with us
- God's Presence with me - daily, moment by moment
- Time with hubby and our girl
- Hubby making me a delicious birthday dinner
- Sweet friend surprising me with a scrumptious chocolate cake, and sharing it with my moms in prayer group
- Enjoying a sherbert pink/orange sunset with my family while on a walk
Phil Vischer image sourced from: atutele.com
Linking today with sweet and gifted friend Laura,
and giving thanks with wise Ann
and the amazing Jen
talented L.L. Barkat
© Soul Stops/Dolly Lee 2012.