August 16, 2016

Being a Faithful Dreamer

Dream BIG! Follow your dreams!...How many times have you been told that or heard it said?
Find GOD's dream for your life!...Now, how often do you hear that? Not as much, right?

I just finished a short, yet powerful, devotion titled God's Dream for Your Life. It is a 19 day plan by pastor and author Rick Warren, and free on the Bible app. I highly recommend downloading the Bible app and add this devotion plan.
Some mornings I read and felt like it was a pep rally injecting hope and faith into my dreams!

As I wrote this, I found myself relating these encouraging truths about dreams to some of our experiences as we pursued our dream of becoming parents through adoption. Even though I didn't start with that intent, I'm grateful God led me down that trail!
I won't spoil it for you by giving you a day-by-day recap, but here are major take-a-ways that I encourage you to consider with your own dreams.
 
FIND YOUR DREAM
God gives us these dreams. If your dream is real, then it is God-given. A real dream is one that doesn't go away. Wishes fade, dreams grow stronger the more we pursue them. We may think these dreams are our ideas, but that's not how it works. Sorta like when my husband and I thought we chose to adopt instead of going through another round of infertility treatments. We thought we would take a break, pray about it, and then move forward. How silly of us, that wasn't our idea! God planted that dream in our hearts like a farmer plants a seed in his freshly tilled soil. He planted the seed, cultivated it, and then let us reap the blessings of our son. If you don't know your dream, then you have to tune everything out and ask God for it.
 
COMMIT TO YOUR DREAM
Commit yourself to God's word, dig in to your dream, and focus. God gives us dreams, but we have to make the decision to achieve them. Our motivation sets our wishes apart from our dreams. Have faith in His heavenly plan, not your earthly viewpoint. With every decision you make, consider how it supports or deviates from your dream. God believes we are capable of doing our part, or He would not give us the dream. After we submitted our adoption profile and applications to adoption agencies, there were times when I let negative and impatient thoughts creep in my mind. Sometimes, I thought there is no way a birthmother will choose us over a couple. Fear and weakness sometimes got the best of me, but I knew God wanted us to be parents. I held tight to the dream he placed in our hearts. Another thing is tell people your dreams! Maybe not announce it to the world, but share your calling with others that will support you, pray for you, and hopefully hold you accountable in a positive way. We chose not to shout our adoption dream from the rooftops, but did have a group of people that knew we were actively presenting and seeking God's path leading to our son. Great success can be a result of positive sharing and accountability! When you commit to God's dream for your life, you're committing to Him. Sharing your dream with others and your commitment to attaining the dream is a statement of faith!
 

EXPECT DELAYS
Once I have a vision, I want to run out and make it happen regardless if I have all the resources or insight. Yes, we have a responsibility to work to make our dreams reality; however, we can't run ahead of God. Sometimes along the path, we encounter dead ends. That doesn't mean your dream is over! God may take us on a detour so that our dream becomes even more clear. When this happens, pray for guidance and the right path be obvious. My husband and I had a very clear vision of the desires for our family and our abilities as parents. Adoption requires you to be very honest with yourself at what you can handle and provide. Still, there were times when I wanted to rush things and deviate from that clear vision. My hope would often dip when we weren't seeing our vision in the babies being presented. Then, when we did present to birthmothers, there were plenty of rejections. Once I would recover from the sting, I reminded myself that God was waiting on our child; thus, the delay. God doesn't abandon His promise. It may be that He is actually waiting on us...
 

EXPECT GOD TO DELIVER
Expect God to deliver on His promises. That's called faith! With our human nature, we often grow weary or begin to lose hope. When you are ready, when the timing is perfect for His will, He will deliver that dream. This is the opposite of relying on yourself to make something happen.  At some point, I whole-heartedly trusted God. I knew deep down that God would not let us miss our baby or send us the wrong baby. God is too good for that! Sure enough a few months later, God led a young woman to choose us as our son's parents. While you're waiting, read God's words and realize His promises. Positive, secular encouragement is good reinforcement, but the Bible prevails. It calms panic, turns weakness to courage, and is a roadmap for navigating our journey.
 

Each of these truths left such an impression on my heart and mind. Isn't it amazing that our mighty God has written our dreams in His plans! This my friends is glorious, freeing, and leaves me hopeful. I hope sharing from a personal perspective is relatable and encouraging to you.
I don't know about you but I want to uncover all the dreams God has planned for me and pursue them whole-heartedly!

If you enjoyed this summary of God's Dream for Your Life devotion by Rick Warren, find it on the Bible app or here.

Fit from Within,
SFM


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