It takes hard work, for a long time, to achieve anything that is worth achieving in the entertainment industry. Many writers, actors, artists and songwriters want instant success, and they want it NOW! Some even try to buy their way to immediate success, thinking they can bypass the hard work. They quickly find out they still have to do the hard work. Even for the artists on shows like American Idol or The Voice, who get a quick boost, must build on that opportunity and keep working hard to have any chance of a career. No one escapes the grind. Are you willing to do the hard work, not just for a year or two, but for decades? If you are, you will end up being a success.

You may or may not know Mark Lowry. One of his major accomplishments is being co-writer of “Mary Did You Know?” It seems every Christmas at least one major pop, country or Christian artist chooses to sing this wonderful song on their Christmas cd. He is also a Dove award winning artist, songwriter, humorist and author.

Mark has worked hard from the very beginning. At times I know he wondered if he would survive the business to become truly successful. But, this week Mark Lowry was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame. In his business, that is real success. He did become an instant success, about forty years later.

What he didn’t say in the video above is that in the 43 dates in 41 days that Roy Morgan booked him; he had to stop at McDonald’s more times that he can remember. He had to sleep on pastor’s couches night after night, get up, and drive hundreds of miles to be funny for the next group. It was a big deal for Roy to even ask for Mark to have a hotel room. He was alone (no cell, internet, or iPads at the time) mile after mile, traveling in an okay car, going from church to church. He had to stretch every dollar to have enough money for gas. He had to really trust that he was on the right path when occasionally he would get a handshake and pat on the back from the pastor, instead of an envelope with his small fee.

It’s called a work ethic. He loves to make people laugh. Forty years later Mark views his life with its trials and tribulations as an opportunity for God to create joy and laughter for his listeners. Personally, I do believe in God’s timing, miracles, and His supernatural intervention that can create instant results. At the same time, I believe in 2 Thessalonians 3:10, where it says, “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”  Both of those beliefs can combine to produce amazing results in life.

Mark Lowry’s award this week is an excellent example of what God can do when someone is willing to do the hard work every single day and still allow God to supernaturally intervene at the perfect times!

It’s a pleasure to be your friend, Mark. Congratulations on this tremendous accomplishment! (P.S. Thank you for the shout out!!)

You can check out his website at MarkLowry.com or his Facebook page.