Welcome to week 2 of 2023!
As I step into this new year, I’ve been doing a 20-day book study with Havilah Cunnington called I Dream Big.
Dreams are an interesting thing. Do you dream? Some people dream most nights. I, however, rarely have dreams at night. Yet, setting goals/dreams for my life is what I do often. In my high school, we set goals every day within our subjects, and we got the satisfaction of crossing them off every day. This was a good feeling to set a goal and see it accomplished. So, as an adult, I did the same.
Go to college. ✔️
Get married. ✔️
Find a job that you love to do. ✔️
Have children. ✔️
Become a leader in my church community. ✔️
Find local boards to become a part of to become a little more intentional in my community impact. ✔️
Buy a house. ✔️
Buy a car. ✔️
The list could go on and on, but you get the picture. You can start to feel like you have a grip on your life by checking the boxes that society says is the next right box. Life seems manageable. Life seems enjoyable. Life seems pretty perfect. Now, I know this is not everyone’s story. I am thankful to have grown up in a spirit-filled home. My heritage has believers and music influences on every side. I did not grow up around cursing or drinking or smoking or intense emotional behaviors. I lived a mild childhood, and looking back, it’s more of a gift than I had given it credit.
Now in my 40s, I have started to reflect on the past a little more and what actually will last in the future and even beyond me. I want to create or be a part of something that will outlast my lifetime. I’m thinking about legacy, eternity, and the space in between more and more lately. You see, we are all just passing through. Jesus’ dream was for union and complete unity to Him. We have been separated since sin came into the world. Our goal is to bridge that gap and find our truest self by giving our hearts back to Him daily and say, “Thy will be done in me.” Amen.
As I reflect over this past year, it sure has been a learning curve. I am learning that investing in people is a rewarding cause. I am learning to understand another means to feel WITH them, NOT just FOR them. I am learning to slow down and actually smell the roses. I am learning that every life matters. I am learning that a genuine smile and a thank you can spark a heart. I am learning that apologizing is a sign of courage. I am learning to get up and try again is a gain and deserves a grin. ☺️I am learning that doing new things is challenging and rewarding. I am learning that loving with your whole heart hurts when it sparks, for its stretching you from the inside to push that love to the outside.
What does any of this have to do with dreaming?
I am learning that when we are young, we have a lot of dreams for our lives. For some, they play out by the book, and for others they don’t feel like they have accomplished any one of them. As you get older and look back, you may feel regret for putting so much pressure on yourself to accomplish so much at such a young age, meaning you and me took things too seriously or feel like a failure that nothing seems to have come together within our timeline. Maybe life felt like it was coming at you instead of guiding you through it. You may have wished you lived more, adventured more. You wished you were not so uptight about everything being done just right. With so many feelings, it can get really exhausting the more you start pondering the past from a pain perspective.
So, I’m here at the beginning of the year asking you to reflect on your dreams with an eternal perspective. Do they need revised? Do they need thrown to the side? Were they dreams spoken over you by friends and family but were not really God’s plan for your life? I like to say if you’re not dead, then you’re not done. For, we are responsible for today. We get to start again today. So, I’m going to start right now and say thank you for following along in my broken story for His glory. I’m learning dreams grow with you as you grow into all God created you to be. Even our capacity grows as our understanding and clarity follows the Holy Spirit’s inner discerning.
Well, this one feels like a ramble of sorts, but I hope you can hear my heart. Take some time to do a heart check!! Some things might need to be realigned. Some things might need to be declined, meaning they are no longer serving you in the journey still set before you. Some things might need revived. So, drop Jesus a line and ask your heart, Am I still following Your line, Your guide, Your path set out for me? Did I get off course? Help me find Your course/voice again. They say it’s not how you start, but how you finish that matters anyway.
Let’s DREAM BIG in 2023!
Here is your ✔️ list for this week.
✔️Let’s check our hearts to clear any mental or emotional debris getting in the way of truly following Thee!
✔️Let’s reflect on our past with a lens of faith in the Father’s faithfulness!
✔️And finally, let’s project His light with hope to others that goodness is for sure ahead!
Until next time,
Connect to the Mender
Be a Sender