- A cherished aspiration, ambition or ideal
- An unrealistic or self-deluding fantasy
We all have -or have had- an ambitious dream. Maybe yours was extreme, like becoming an astronaut or playing a professional sport. Maybe it was to graduate from a specific college, start a nonprofit organization or open a coffee shop. Whatever the dream, something was on your heart. The thought made you excited! You had planned it out in your head and it was awesome. You were passionate when you talked about it. But somewhere along the line – LIFE.
The older you get, the more complicated life gets. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it is a fact. Family and friends, school, work, bills to pay, getting involved at church, cooking, cleaning, trying to stay healthy…all these things come with a price tag: your money and your time.
I think this transition (to adulthood) is where far too many dreams are lost. This is dangerous. This makes us susceptible to putting our physical needs above our spiritual ones. You tend to think more of your own situation before helping others. You begin to choose jobs for pay rather than passion. The dream that was once on the forefront of your mind starts fading into the background. The more you allow that dream to fade – the more it will start to feel like nothing more than a fantasy.
Once in a while something will spark the fire – maybe a verse stands out to you in a sermon or you read an inspiring story on Facebook. Your heart races and an idea pops into your head…then reality makes an appearance. You think of all the time you’ve wasted. You think of your busy schedule and your finances and how difficult it would be to pursue this crazy idea. I’ll let you in on a little secret – if you are looking for excuses, you will find them…but the same goes for opportunities. What if we lived our lives actively seeking out opportunities instead of entertaining excuses or regret? The size of your dreams show your faith in God and your view of him. God didn’t create us to live a life of comfort. Faith requires action – to dream such big dreams that it seems impossible without divine intervention.
There have been countless times in my life where I was told something was very unlikely to happen or I was advised against making a decision that may seem risky to the average eye. Moving to Nashville is a great example. Within one month, I had decided to move to a city I had never been to in a new state, sold my house, and quit my job without another lined up. Now, yes, I can see why some people were shocked and confused! This is the beauty of pursuing a God-sized goal. By taking a risk that God had put on my heart, I was able to show my faith in him with my life, not just my words. See, when you are following a plan – a crazy plan – that God has set before you, you are not tied to the worries of this world. When something goes “wrong”, it is just a plot twist. God has something else – something better – in mind.
When you act on your faith and pursue your dreams, it creates a ripple effect for others. Think of your dream as a stone being thrown into a lake. The greater the stone, the more ripples. You pursuing your dream could create opportunities for others to do the same.
Think back to that dream – you know the one I’m referring to because it probably was the first thing to pop into your mind when you started reading this. What was it that God put on your heart? Maybe it was a dream since childhood, or maybe it came at a pivotal moment in your life. Now think of your progress. Did you pursue the dream in any way? If not, what distracted you? What were you afraid of?
We need to stop living as if the point of life is to arrive safely at death. Life moves at the speed of your decisions. When God puts something on your heart – take that as a compliment! Despite if you feel ready or worthy, you have to act. God would not have sent me to Nashville without a purpose. It is my responsibility to follow his lead. Every breadcrumb he leaves me is leading me to a calling greater than myself. He wants that for you too. I don’t believe in coincidences. I believe that God put every person on this earth for a reason. I believe that all opportunities are gifts and that we are responsible to taking them and running with them.
The next time you feel the fire starting up inside of you, don’t just accept opportunities – run toward them. Seek them out. Pick your wildest, God-sized dream and don’t look back. You find the most fulfillment from your work when it is aligned with your purpose.
“I could never write a book.”
“Would people even want to read it?”
“There are already so many out there…”
“I don’t even know where to get started.”
Doubts like these are nothing more than a defense mechanism. We fear failure or judgement, so we begin to doubt ourselves. Without God, maybe your dream is impossible…but with God ALL things are possible!
“I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?”
God is going to fulfill every single plan he has created. The question is, will you allow him to use you? He gives us first dibs – that’s the feeling or idea you get – but you have to act fast. God chose you because he knows your potential but make no mistake, he isn’t going to wait around long while you question things or wrestle with doubt and fear. He doesn’t call the qualified, he qualifies the called. There are no prerequisites, no required degree, no experience needed! He does on-the-job training.
Potential has a shelf life. If you wait too long to respond to his call, it may be too late. Your actions and contributions don’t get you into Heaven – thats Jesus’ job – but it is possible to have a saved soul and a wasted life.
So do the thing.
Be that person.
Allow God to use you for a dream so big that there’s no other explanation than to point to him.
By Emily Meadows