Dare to dream again

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Dare to dream again

Once upon a time we were all dreamers. 

From childhood we have been created to dream.  We dream of being astronauts, firefighters, scientists and ballet dancers.  We dream of being superheroes, world changers and race car drivers.

Our dreams were big, larger than life but vivid and to our childhood selves, attainable.

Dreams are beautiful, our soul is inspired, imagination and creativity are ignited.  Passion to achieve our dreams drives us onward.

As I walk around my messy house, stepping over abandoned toys, books and papers left by my children, a large part of me feels that dreams and creativity died a long time ago.  My days seem filled with tasks, chores and quite honestly, there isn’t a lot of energy left to spend on the pursuit of dreams. 

I was recently reading a book directed to mothers, and it asked “What are your dreams?”  And it challenged the reader to write down 3 or 4 dreams on paper.

I must have dreams, this should be fun.

So I thought about it.

And I thought about it.

And I thought about it and blank!

Nothing. 

I could not even think of one.  Not one.

Does watching Netflix and eating a peaceful snack at the end of an exhausting day count as a dream?!…because then maybe I had one.

Or maybe have my children clean up after themselves, then I would have two dreams.

But in all seriousness, this really shook me.

When did my dreams die?  Did my creativity die too?

I used to be such a carefree soul.  I wholeheartedly believed any dream was achievable.

Did the craziness and business of motherhood do this?

Maybe the very act of becoming a mother, of learning to ‘day in and day out’  selflessly serve your family and the very constant needs of little ones,  causes our dreams to fade away.

Maybe it’s the fact that motherhood, or adulthood changes us so much that we put the notion of perusing dreams away, dismiss it as ridiculous and no longer practical.

In a lot of ways I hardly recognize my 22-year old self and can almost laugh at her dreams. Ten years later, I dare say I am much wiser and stable.  Jetting off to a new country on a whim in pursuit of adventure is not as important to me as it once seemed.  Maybe maintaining a stable, thriving environment for my family is my dream?  I just do not always recognize the beauty in the mundane.

My God and my family are hands-down my absolute priority and I never want that to change.

But, I want to carve out space to dream again.

In my own life, in my day to day, I want to incorporate creativity, aspirations and dreaming.

I want to bring creative energy into friendships and relationships.  I want to be surrounded by people who encourage and inspire and support dreams, alongside with accountability to speak up when maybe a dream is misguided.

So, I took a journal and a pen (old fashioned here, I love putting ink on paper), and over the course of 2 weeks, I thought, pondered, searched, scribbled out and re-wrote down some dreams of mine.

So I will pass on the same question to you, what are your dreams?

I encourage you to write on paper, your top 3 dreams.

We come alive when we are creative.

I challenge you to find some creativity in yourself.

We are capable of so much more then we think we are.  Sometimes we need to be reminded, encouraged or perhaps given permission to dream big.

I bought myself a coffee mug with the words “dream big” on it. It is to be my reminder in my day to day to incorporate life, colour, creativity and dreams into my beloved chaos.

I wrote this two years ago on my previous blog.

Act on it

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I have recently read through the Book of Acts.  This book brings me awe.  It humbled me, challenged me, and taught me.  It brought me to tears more than a few times.  It depicts a radical faith, one that I can only strive to have. It’s a story of one man taking on the ancient world with a big story, the story of Christ.

One thing struck me.  God works in unexpected ways that are way bigger than anything we could imagine or foresee.  To give you a bit of background, Paul was a Roman citizen and an expert Jew, highly trained.  He was a Christian hater and torturer.   This very same man, who after meeting God on a road in a radical way, turned his life around and spent his life telling everyone everywhere about the hope of Christ.  Wow.  Just wow!

God is just as powerful and awesome today. We can choose to serve and believe in the same Lord.  This great story doesn’t end here.

Paul was beaten, jailed, threatened, disowned, rejected, shipwrecked, stood trials from Jerusalem to traveling to Rome from false accusations, and yet he never wavered.  He stood strong. He refused to give up.  He refused to back down, even in the face of death.

How God works can sure be ironic at times, and yet so effective.  God works in the unexpected. Paul had to stand trial for his faith more than once. And what did he choose to do at these trials?  This radical man chose to tell entire courtrooms of powerful and influential people of his day about his conversion story from a radical Christian-torturer to becoming a radical follower of Jesus.  He witnessed to entire rooms of prominent people. This infuriated the crowds of accusers.  The Jewish people plotted to kill him.

But being born a Roman citizen gave him a very unique vantage point.  Not just any one could mess with him.  Being a Roman citizen gave him access to Roman law.  A Roman citizen could not be punished until being guilty of a crime.  So Paul appears before a Roman Governor, and shares his same story.  But they cannot find him guilty.  And he appears again before a King with all his prominent men and military officers, and shares his story again.  And once that is inconclusive, Paul appeals to Caesar and is sent to Rome where he spends the next 2 years freely sharing the Good news of Christ.

See the irony in this all?  The more he stood firm in what he believed and spoke truth, the grander the audiences God gave him to speak in front of. He was able to witness to the most influential people in the ancient world at that time.  He shared God’s story with sincerity and passionate conviction.  The Jews in Jerusalem falsely accused him hoping to get him sentenced to death.  Instead they set the stage for Paul to share his story on an even larger and grander scale than anyone could have imagined.  God had a plan, and Paul trusted God to fulfill that plan even when Paul did not see how that would happen.

What faith!  What an example he left us. 

I challenge you to live out your faith in a big way.  We are not all given grand stages on which to proclaim God’s story, but we definitely can proclaim it.  Live with so much integrity that your life tells a story.  Take the road less traveled. Reach out and love your neighbors, your co-workers, your family, your friends, even those difficult people that seem impossible.  Show love in a world of haters.  Choose to walk by faith in a fact-based world.  Choose to forgive when you have been hurt.  Be the person who you always wish you had in your life. 

You will never regret taking the high road in life.