Dreams fuel creativity and inspire people to go far beyond their abilities. I’m speaking specifically about imagination—that ability to dream up solutions and scenarios that, as yet, have not premiered on your life’s stage. Dreams are essential for building a satisfying life and sustaining a high level of hope (the biblical word for a confident expectation).
Long held dreams of “what if” and “what might be” have driven me to make decisions many thought were silly, irrational, foolish, or totally insane. There have been moments—yes, even months (maybe even years) where their cries of practicality looked like Solomon’s wisdom. They suggested, ripped apart, belittled, and attempted to throttle this dream or that one in the name of what they deemed safe or acceptable. The only problem with that—God did not impart that specific dream within them or…they were too fearful to step out in faith and reach for those far away stars themselves. It amazes me how many people have settled for less because less is always safer or somehow fulfills what is expected by the faceless crowd called normal.
Every time I have listened to those erudite naysayers and purveyors of this world’s wisdom and knowledge, I have missed the boat God was in, and was forced to stand on the shore and gaze at what might have been. Let me tell you, regret is not a friend you want to travel long distances with. Failure is a far better companion than regret. At least when you fail, you can pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and try again. With regret, all you get is instant replay over and over again.
It is my belief that God gives all of us dreams. He allows them to incubate in the cracks and the crevices of our spirit and soul and then moves them into our heart and eventually into our minds where they can sprout into existence. He puts them there with all the resources we need to bring what we imagine into reality with His help. He partners with us—that’s right the God who created everything partners with you and me.
If I had listened to sensible sages of common sense, horse sense, and ultimately no sense, I would never have married my wife, gone into the plumbing business, acquired an undergraduate degree (not to mention an advanced degree), become a pastor, had a book published (with a second coming out in May of 2012), planted a church, or jug-fished with the alligators in the lily pads on the Ross Barnett Reservoir. No, if I had listened to the wisdom of this world, I would have played it safe and been content to color inside the lines. I would have looked just like everybody else—except…God did not make me like everybody else. That cookie cutter approach to life where we’re all supposed to be average was forged in the dark fires of hell, not in the ingenious mind of our Creator. Look-a-likes and copy cats are supposedly the highest form of a compliment, but in reality they are nothing more than wanna-be’s who missed their opportunity to be cutting edge. They were unwilling to take a chance and lead, but were content to steal a good idea and follow.
Perhaps I am too hard—too sarcastic—too whatever, but I’ve seen far too many dreams squashed and too many people accept less than the best. Perhaps you’re standing on the shore, watching what you think is your opportunity disappear over the horizon as the sails of God’s boat dims in the distance. If so, take a few steps out on that murky water toward your dream’s sunset. I know—I know—people can’t walk on the water (that’s what they told Peter too). Yea, yea there are sharks in the water. Yes, the water is over your head and the tide could carry you out to sea and you might drown. All those things are a possibility, but…unless you take a step—you will never actively partner with God and contend for your dream, and that sunset you’re presently staring at will never become the sunrise of your dream.