Thursday, May 23, 2013

Dare To Dream

Dare to Dream.

Words beating in my mind and heart lately, like a pulse that is racing. Dare to Dream.

I have been thinking on this lately.

What have I missed out on because of my fears? What dreams went by the wayside because I was worried or bothered by others holding me back? What have I not done that I should have?
 I can't go back and change the past. But I can allow my dreams to grow and I can dare to dream. I can make a difference in the future.

What if David had not dared to fight Goliath? (1Samuel 17)
   What if Moses had not stood up to Pharaoh? (Exodus 3)
      What if Rahab had not hid the spies? (Joshua 2)
       What if Martin Luther King, Jr had not given a speech to thousands?
          What if fear held all those men/women back from what God called them to do?

What if they had not dared to dream that God would carry them beyond their own ability to do something greater for His kingdom? BUT THEY DID! They didn't just dare to dream....they took the dare and played it out and now they sit as part of history to teach us.

Looking back on life a little bit, I had one specific event come to my mind. I used to (Ok, I pretty much still am, but I have gotten much better) be the play it safe girl. The one who would not go into the lake because i wasn't a strong swimmer; The one who wouldn't climb the side of the mountain because I was afraid of heights-I took the safe path up the side; The one who wouldn't stay up all night at sleepovers because I needed sleep.

The one event that came to my mind was that I missed out on a great experience a lot of my high school buddies got to do because they weren't afraid. That experience was a wilderness trip. Our youth pastor was extremely outdoorsy, and so one summer, he endeavored to take a group on a canoe trip through the (Canadian i believe) wilderness. I did just about every youth event I could, but I said no to this one pretty readily because I was afraid. Afraid of my lack of swimming in the rivers. Afraid of not being able to keep up. Afraid of getting lost (not that I didn't trust him, but more so I didn't trust myself in a canoe). This week, as I was thinking about daring to dream, and how I have learned to step way out of my comfort zone to do things, that event came to mind. I cannot go back and change that. I said no at that time. But perhaps one day I will go out and do it with a different group  and put that fear to rest. I have come to love hiking and being outdoors and stepping out of my zone a little....I wish I had then!

The point is, I have learned to dare to dream. To step out of my fears and into the waters. (literally, actually! I finally learned how to swim last year! Not great, but I can now say I can). I do not want fear to be what holds me back from what God has called me to do.

Some "dares" may seem small to the onlookers, but for me, those dares may be huge. Some dares may be told to me by the nay sayers that they cannot be accomplished. Some fears may rise, but if I dare not dream, then I would stay stagnant, and stagnant is not where God has called any of us to be.  So I dare.

I dare to triple my mom's scholarship fund this year.

I dare to be a better wife, in an environment full of people who say that "I" should be my priority. I dare to share my story of hurts, failures, dreams and hopes with other women who may experience the same emotions, in a world that tells us to keep our stories to ourselves.

I dare to teach my kids to stand up for their beliefs in a world full of giving into peer pressure, a world full of non believers. I dare to teach them the truths and tell them to spread their wings with those truths.

I dare to dream to publish my writings, somehow, someway. I am not sure what that looks like yet, whether it is a book or it is a magazine article, but I am beginning to dream on this one...

I dare. Some of my "dares" are long term dare to dream lists- Like going to Hawaii with my husband, or taking a Carribbean cruise with him.
 I dare to dream that one day I will do a race in all 50 states.
I dare to dream that moms scholarship fund will reach a million dollars.  One day.
I dare to dream that Michael and I will retire and be the most loving grandparents a child has experienced.
 I dare to dream that we will own a vacation home one day.
 I dare to dream that my writing will have a long lasting impact-not for my glory, but for His.

Holley Gerth, in her blog, asked a few questions that i will quickly respond to:
   What do I do when my dream is scary and others don't support me??
       My answer is: I pray. I ask God to show me where He wants to lead me with my dream. And I ask Him to give me patience as I wait for the obstacles to move. I ask Him to help me to seek HIM in my dream and not my own selfish desires. And it is amazing what He will do with that.
        I have seen answers to this in some of my dreams already. One dream is growing my mom's scholarship fund. I have obstacles with that. Big ones. But as I pray about it, God opens doors. I prayed, and He gave me a window in the Cedarville University magazine for an article about mom and the scholarship. He answered by a sponsor contacting me. And some of mom's old college buddies contacting me. He is answering. It is growing. My dreams with it are big this year, but I know He can answer, obstacles and all. So I keep pursuing and praying.

She also asked in her blog: What part of your dream feels the riskiest?
  I guess it depends on which dream I choose to share that feels the riskiest, because each one is different. With mom's scholarship, being as we grow that through a 5K event, the risk is people not coming or not having enough sponsorship money to do what we need to do. The risk is failure. If we reach my dream amount to raise this year, that would mean 400 participants in the event. That is scary to me. Risky because it is a lot of work and time. Risky because what if they all show up and it doesn't go smoothly?
  And I turn again to prayer. Putting my dreams in his hands. Not for my glory, but for His. Using my passions for His glory.

Risky? Yes. Scary? Yes. Intimidating? Yes.

  Worth it? Yes.

Dare to dream. You (I) never know. Perhaps one day we will be the Moses or the Rahab or the Martin Luther King, Jr. of our day. We never know what God will do with our dreams until we dare to dream them . Until we dare to try. Or we may just be another person in the crowd going after something. But we may be a David to our child. Or we may be a David to another woman .
 I don't know where God will take my dreams or how He will use them. But I am daring to dream. Will you?

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