As a small group we were asked the question what is our dream? If money, time, and fear were no object…what would that dream be? As soon as I heard the question and realized that we were working around the group of people I pretty much panicked inside. I wanted to abandon the call…I wanted to walk away. Immediately, my heart started pounding, blood rushed to my face and my mouth went so dry it felt like I hadn’t had a drink of water in days.
For so many years of my life there are memories, one after another, of time that has been devoted to whatever it took to ensure my survival for the moment. As a result I often find myself in an outright struggle with fear and my first instinct is to react in the manner that I have been trained to think. I can usually recognize that my intuition leads me to start looking at and assessing a situation with the intent on preserving myself. Constantly figuring out the ways that I can accomplish a said task by keeping as many people content as possible and with the ultimate and primary outcome being such that I can finish without failing.
My preference, for as long as I can remember, has been to keep my intimate thoughts and any inkling of hope to myself. Although, I know in my mind that being asked a question about voicing a dream that is in my heart is nothing to fear, my body had this strangely strong reaction to the inevitable end result of having to answer (what felt to me) an extremely exposing question. I felt as if sharing my dream meant an exposure so deep that any words contrary to the sustaining or building up of that dream would inflict a wound that could be mortal.
I realize that endeavoring to dream big will not kill me nor does it mean that there is some sort of ominous cloud that will center itself around me, conveying my impending doom… However, somewhere in my brain I fight with the thought that failure equals death and that had on many occasions caused me to not even take a step forward.
More recently, I’ve had the privilege of being around people who define failure and success differently. One person’s perspective says, “failure is not trying” and another “time to redefine failure-“So the question begs to be asked, is it that of society or will it be a definition of my own making? If success by the world’s standard is defined as profit and my definition is to learn-then there is precious few moments when I can admit to being less than a success.
Sinking into the truth of who God is and who He made me to be is where the strength of the battle comes from. I am a child of God. That is who I am. That is who I was created to be…one who rests in the arms of my Father. The fight is exhaustive so I find reprieve in God’s Word.
Psalm 103-A psalm of David.
1 Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. 2 Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. 3 He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. 4 He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. 5 He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!
6 The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly.
7 He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel. 8 The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. 9 He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever. 10 He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve. 11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. 12 He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west. 13 The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him. 14 For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust. 15 Our days on earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and die. 16 The wind blows, and we are gone- as though we had never been here. 17 But the love of the Lord remains forever with those who fear him. His salvation extends to the children’s children 18 of those who are faithful to his covenant, of those who obey his commandments!
19 The Lord has made the heavens his throne; from there he rules over everything.
20 Praise the Lord, you angels, you mighty ones who carry out his plans, listening for each of his commands. 21 Yes, praise the Lord, you armies of angels who serve him and do his will! 22 Praise the Lord, everything he has created, everything in all his kingdom.
Let all that I am praise the Lord.”
Do I dare to let my heart lead me in the areas of my hopes and dreams? Maybe this is the direction that I need to go-and let my logical and practical brain work out the details! So I surround myself with those who love, encourage and support me, ones who are willing to help guide me with the Word of God and ones who will be there when the challenge gets hard.
God help me to rest in you. Forgive me when I think that I know better than you and try and take things into my own hands. Help me to see and recognize those places of my own gifting and step into them. Remind me to find joy and excitement in the hopes and dreams that you placed in my heart. God I thank you for being the driving desire of my heart that propels me to a place of incredible beauty because I have you.