You {and Your Dreams} Are Made to Soar

January 26, 2015 | 13 comments

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?

by | January 26, 2015 | 13 comments

13 Comments

  1. Ronda Cox

    My dream is to serve God and encourage others to trust, hope, grow, and dream through writing. I am frozen in fear and need to find a starting point.

    Reply
  2. Laura Risser Moss

    Grateful for this much-needed, supernaturally-timely encouragement. Thank you, Jennifer.

    Reply
  3. Lyn

    What happens when you don’t know how to dream? When you have no idea what your calling or purpose is? Or even what your gifts are for that matter? Life has crushed my previous dreams to dust and God has been silent.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      Hi Lyn! Thank you for your great (and very common!!) questions. I’m so glad you asked. I’m not going to answer directly back, because I’m not an “answer girl” as much as a friend who just wants to encourage you.

      Let’s start here: What if we thought of a dream as being more linked to who we ARE, instead of something that we DO?

      Maybe ask these questions of yourself: What matters most to me? What makes me feel most alive? There’s a good chance that your calling is closely linked to the passions that God has placed in you. My friend Holley Gerth is such a great communicate of God-sized dreams, and might I recommend one of her books? Check her out at holleygerth.com. She writes about God-sized dreams, and she also writes about what to do when your dreams die.

      When Holley talks about God-sized dreams, she’s not talking about the size of a calling, or anything like that, but more about God’s right-sized dreams for each of us.

      I hope that my questions encourage you today, and that God reminds you today that you really do have a calling and a purpose — even if it seems really foggy out there.

      Praying for you, Lyn, and for the places where your dreams have gone to dust, and where God has gone silent.

      ~ Jennifer

      Reply
      • Lyn

        Thank you Jennifer! Your blog entries have been very meaningful and encouraging to me! Your response has made me think. I will mull over the questions you asked, check out the God-Sized Dreams book and pray that the fog lifts. 🙂

        Reply
  4. Trudy Den Hoed

    My dream is to give glory to God and point hurting souls to Christ for hope, healing, and freedom to fly to people I meet in this life and through my website – Freed to Fly. Thank you for this encouragement, Jennifer. The following line especially touched my heart as a gentle reminder from God – “Don’t muzzle your voice, or enslave yourself to gravity when you were made to soar for His glory.”

    Reply
  5. Becky Keife

    What an incredible dream to be given as a child and then have the clarity to recall it and see the divine spiritual significance of its message. Amazing. Makes me think of how David writes in the Psalms about how even at night his heart receives instructions. Yes. But not dreams to be kept hidden in slumber, but to be lived out when fully awake! Thanks for sharing these heart-inspiring words today. My dream is use the words God gives me to inspire, encourage, and come alongside other women on their journey, too. Thanks for blazing the trail so beautifully, friend.

    Reply
  6. lindalouise

    Oh, Jennifer. I’be been grounded by the book rejections and seem to have lost the dream. Not sure I have the “stuff” to fly any more.

    Reply
  7. Katie Andraski

    Thank you for this. I’ve been hearing a lot about calling lately–your post before this, that I still need to read to my husband, this post, a couple sermons at church. I have had that feeling under my ribs but am wary of it…Our pastor this past week said it’s not always real clear which way to go. And the pastor the week before said God told him it didn’t matter if he decided to accept the call or not. But he remembered how he wanted to preach at a church with a pipe organ and this church had one, so he accepted the call and stayed eleven years.

    Oh and congratulations about your book being in Walmart. Peace of the Lord be with you always.

    Reply
  8. Martha Orlando

    I am following my dream, and I believe, God’s call in my writing. Though my first series of novels hasn’t done well by the world’s standards, at least yet, I’m working on the next series in faith – God wants me to tell this story!
    Thanks for the encouragement, Jennifer!
    Blessings!

    Reply
  9. Nancy Ruegg

    As a child, I too used to dream about flying. The experience seemed so real! But just as you said, once I opened my eyes, the lovely dream immediately deflated. Thank you, Jennifer, for the reassurances of this post, that as our adult dreams become deflated by the detours and the passage of time, we can know that “God has us precisely where He wants us, in this moment of history on this specific spot on the globe (Acts 17:26). (Looked up that scripture, by the way. That’s a great truth to hold close!) Thank you also for the reminder that, whether I am on a detour or on the pathway to my dream, obedience needs to be a top priority. That’s my prayer.

    Reply

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