He’s one of the smiliest gents you’ll meet and he just can’t stop writing songs. Tom released a new EP recently and his favourite music genre is Neo-Soul – I’d never heard of it either! He is the student worker at Severn Vineyard Bristol and loves seeing students embrace who they are and start to dream big with God. Tom oozes with creativity and is extremely serious about having fun! I chatted with Tom about dreaming recently, here are some of the highlights.
What does it mean to dream with God?
Dreams come from your inward parts, they are part of our identity. When I have stopped fighting, and putting limits on myself, my dreams have started erupting. God has ‘supersized’ my dreams. When I invite him in, my dreams become a reality as they begin to flow out of who I was born to be.
In the past, the what if’s..?, doubts and fears have tried to limit my dreams. When I’m not grounded in scripture and listening to the enemy, my insecurities come out. Everyone experiences this but we choose to battle with the word. We need to throw off fear and walk in truth. Sometimes I sing out loud when I’m in public to make a statement to myself, God and those around me that I don’t care and am embracing my freedom.
What are your dreams for the student generation?
Part of what I’d like students to experience is to know love and embrace who they are, their uniqueness and quirks. When students really start to get free, others might be uncomfortable with it. They might think ‘why aren’t you conforming?’. We find confidence in what God speaks over us, it renews our minds.
I want to see student communities that are vibrant and distinctive. Ones where celebrating each other is normal, where the two commandments can be seen, heard and experienced. This is the big picture dream which has no limit because God is love!
Do you have any personal dreams?
I want to be writing songs and releasing songs. I’d love to write for other artists too, ones that inspire, uplift, encourage and motivate. I want to create music that is catchy as well as has depth – I feel like God is leading me into both the Christian and secular spheres.
I have noticed with my own dreams, it’s important to make them happen. Dreams won’t work unless you do. We know the God of the impossible and he’s the greatest promoter, but I’ve got to write the songs and he’s empowering me to do that.
I want people who listen to my music to notice that I don’t talk about certain things. I want to wage war in the music industry - I want to smash the evil strongholds down with the melodies I create. This is to lift the listeners up, not to keep them down in their darkness. It could be a big platform or it could be in the little conversations where someone in the crowd asks me what is different about this.
What would you say to someone who doesn’t know how to dream?
Accept who you are first and let it come from that place. You won’t dream big dreams if you can’t see how good you are. What makes you tick? What do you get excited about? What things make you who you are? What gets you out of bed in the morning? Dreams shouldn’t be foreign - know what makes you tick.
If you don’t know (maybe you suffer with anxiety or panic attacks) come back to the core stuff and ask God who you are. If you can’t dream, you need to learn to love yourself.
Can a dream be too big?
We serve a God who created the world in 6 days. So why wouldn’t he make anything happen in our tiny lives? Compared to what he did at creation, we are a speck of dust. The massive things we can imagine, God can do that in a heartbeat.