When I was a girl, I had this one recurring dream. It’s crystal-clear on the playback —
I’m wearing Strawberry Shortcake pajamas, standing barefoot in the long grass, down by the lilac tree. My tiny heart understands instinctively that I was made to fly. So I try.
I stretch out my arms, and suddenly this liberating weightlessness buoys me. I effortlessly fly around my yard. The air is perfumed with lilacs.
In the dream, the euphoria never lasts long. Within moments, I am scared I’ll lose control, veer off course, or tangle my little self in the power lines.
There’s more danger below: Some faceless, growling person is grabbing for my feet, trying to pull me down.
In my dream, I talk back to my fears because I want to believe that my first instinct was the right one. I want to believe that I was made to soar. And before long, I’m stretching out my arms more defiantly than ever before, to fly right over shingled rooftops, the church spire and the water tower.
But then – screech – the dream ends. I wake up.
Many of us are living life in the screech.
We’ve “woken up” from dreams, falsely believing that a person can only dream if her eyes are closed. We forget what we were made for, or we fear that the enemy might bring us down if we try. Sometimes it feels safer not to dream.
As grown-ups, we’ve seen too often how the dreams for our own life or for our loved ones can fall apart. Your book manuscript has been rejected again and again. You are repeatedly overlooked for your dream job. Your most fervent hopes for your children are shattered, and you can’t put back any of the pieces.
So in light of rejection, we forget that we were wired to dream, and even perhaps, to soar. We forget that God has us precisely where He wants us, in this moment of history on this specific spot on the globe. (Acts 17:26)
He has a calling for you right where you are, a dream for you to dream. It’s true: Dreams are the God-stories we were made to live with our eyes wide open.
And friend, God has given you the spiritual batteries that you need to dream His dreams for you:
“For God did not give us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
I have only begun to know that dreams really can come true. Even more, I’ve begun to learn that even if my dreams don’t pan out the way I thought they would, they needed to be dreamed anyway.
My role is obedience to the call; God handles the rest. He measures success differently than our world does.
So do the planet a favor: Dream with your eyes open. We need your story, your hands, your song, your wisdom.
Don’t bury your calling. Don’t dismiss your gifts. Don’t muzzle your voice, or enslave yourself to gravity when you were made to soar for His glory. Stretch out your arms, lift your face heavenward, and let yourself fly high in His strength. Talk back to your fears if you have to, and don’t forget to smell the lilacs.
I see you up there, darling, and you look stunning and courageous. Your dreams might just change the world, and they might just change you.
Your turn: Do you have a dream? Does it seem out of reach? How can you find strength today to take the next step?