It’s Dangerous To Dream
We’ve been given tons of motivational mottos. “Don’t ever give up on your dreams.” “Don’t let anyone ever tell you can’t do something.” “Shoot for the stars!” “Follow your dreams, they know the way.”
They are all encouraging, intended to make us not give up, and hopefully achieve said dreams. But the epidemic that is in our culture isn’t that we don’t HAVE dreams to pursue, it’s that we are trying to pursue ALL the dreams we have, all at once!
Don’t get me wrong, trying new things, finding areas where you didn’t know you had a passion or enjoyment of is fantastic and greatly encouraged, but so many of us are never following through with any of it.
We try something for a small time, grow bored, tired, intimidated, or lazy and we move on to the next thing, hoping that will fill the void.
But so many of us are never filling that void. We are never following through with anything.
See if any of this sounds familiar. Are you constantly feeling restless? Do you find yourself never completing things? Do you have about a million ideas, but no idea where to start or how to do it? Are you constantly frustrated, angry, confused on why things aren’t working out? Sounds like a commercial for the flu.
We all have dreams and aspirations of greatness, delusions of grandeur at times. But why are some people, seemingly a select few, accomplishing these dreams while some of us wait at the bottom of life’s mountain, looking up at the ‘overachievers’, still trying to get our footing to even start climbing?
If this is you, listen closely. If you have dreams, passions, great aspirations, but have no foundation to lay them upon, they’re only nice ideas, lip service, and as temporary as a firework; bright, loud, and driven at the start, only to burn out and fizzle shortly thereafter.
Our foundation is in us, who we are and where we place our trust, what is defining us. But our foundations are being built upon sand, always shifting, never settling, never really knowing who we are or what defines us.
I’m a driven person, a dreamer and someone who gets restless often. But I always have a common denominator. I know what and who defines me, regardless of where I work, what I do, or what’s next in my life.
Those variables can and will always change over the course of a lifetime, but my core, my foundation will not. I don’t always get it right or do it best or achieve all my dreams, but I know my limits and I’m listening intensively to the voice of God.
Several years ago I worked in a corporate job I hated. I hated the work, hated what it was doing to me, hated I felt I was wasting my talents or my “true calling”. I had dreams, hopes, and aspirations of greatness and knew how all of it would work out in my head.
But this stupid job was getting in my way. I even grew depressed and felt isolated, like watching everything disintegrate before my very eyes.
My dreams and my wants shared this blurred line; either was really defined from the other. I didn’t know what I wanted in life, but I just wanted my dreams to come true. Sound familiar?
But one day, God shook me, woke me up and convicted me. He put it in perspective for me and it changed the course of my dreams, my aspirations, and my life in all that I do and strive to do from now on.
I started to seek out what God wanted me to do, instead of what I thought I wanted to do. And you know what? When I knew what God wanted me to do, I started to find out what I wanted to do.
I relayed my whole foundation as a believer, as a man, as a dreamer. I started over. Peace was now an option in my life. I knew who I was and what where my foundation lied.
Instead of going to work saying “God, I hate this job. Get me out.” I started saying, “God, who do you want me to impact today?” And I watched God paint a masterpiece of people in a wide spectrum into my life nearly every day. And just when I thought he was going to move me on, another person would cross into my path. But one day, he did move me on and provided another job and opportunity for growth I didn’t see coming.
My dreams still existed, but I realized God was trying to mold me, mature me for some of my dreams to come and honestly, to let me down gently on some others.
What foundation are you laying your dreams upon? If you don’t know who you are or what you truly want, your great ideas (however many they are) will only be just that…ideas.
When we seek out what we want first, we alienate God and what he wants from us NOW. After God, we begin alienating our family, then our friends. Not at first, but over time they begin to see that we aren’t sure what it is we want and it starts to become more difficult for them to follow us or jump on board like they used to.
In every walk of life, ask yourself, “What does God want from me in my current season of life? Do my dreams fit into that right now?”
You’ll begin to realize some of those dreams were just an internal hope of stability in our lives. We were hoping we could find that foundation in something other than where God was guiding us. Maybe we didn’t realize it or were trying to, but ultimately we wandered of the beaten path a bit.
John 12:46 says, “I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark.”
Are you tired of feeling like you are in the dark, always striving towards what you wanted only changing your mind 50 times, try something else, then repeat the same pattern over and over?
Walking by faith can get confused with walking blindly with our wants and hoping God will bless it. Trusting in God is abiding in him and where he has you NOW, not always where you’d like to be or where you think you need to be. That’s a tough pill to swallow, trust me I know. I still struggle with it.
He wants us to work hard, pursue our dreams, follow through, but he wants us to closely listen for his prompting and his voice, asking us to trust him when he says no or not right now. Our hopes and dreams may be getting in the way of our REAL hopes and dreams, which can fill that void in our spirit.
Ask for his protection where you need protecting. He wants to save us from heartache, not walk us into it. So why not consult the one who can prevent it first?
What we want is not always what God wants, but when we listen for his voice, what God wants will always end up being what we want too.