My family and friends have always said “oh, he is just a dreamer”, and in my former life before I truly found Christ this statement was very true. Now I have gone from being “just a dreamer” to a follower of God’s dreams. I no longer live for those lofty dreams that filled my mind, but that I never really pursued.
You see when I was young my family was poor, but we lived in a lake resort that was only 30 minutes from New York City. I grew-up on the top of the hill a block from the lake. Those of us that lived on the hill up the street from the lake, were average income people, or in some cases even poor. However the people that lived on the lake, usually only lived there in the summer and had large homes in the suburbs, or townhomes in Manhattan.
Growing up in the little house up the hill from the summer homes of the wealthy made me desire for the wealth that these people had. In fact if I had someone come by to pick me up I usually had them pick me up at my buddy’s house on the water. I was ashamed of our little home with no grass out front.
As I got older, went away to college and eventually joined the Air force, I took this desire to be wealthy with me. I thought that if I had money that people might accept me better. I yearned to be the envy of other people, like I envied the people who had the things I could only dream about.
As a Christian I have finally accepted that my value is not based on what I have or don’t have but rather on the fact that God loves me and his son Jesus died for me. I no longer desire to have the possessions that I have always admired. I always heard that you can’t take it with you, but that didn’t keep me from lusting after them, even though I knew the bible says it is a sin.
Now That I am reborn I know that I have been accepted by the one person that truly matters, Jesus Christ. I now accept that dreaming about worldly things is a waste of time. While it is not wrong to have worldly possessions, we should not occupy our mind with lustful thoughts of such things. 2 Corinthians 10:5 5 we demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
Instead I now strive to keep my thoughts on Christ and try being a living example of him. This does not mean that I can’t have dreams or pursue my desires. In fact once we have accepted Christ as our savior he chooses us to do his work. We are assigned Dreams that God desires us to pursue.
As a young Christian I ask myself if the dream I have been given is truly from God or if I am “just dreaming” again. I find myself wondering are these dreams in my heart really from God? I realize that I am certainly not the only new Christian that has these thoughts. I know there are others struggling through this too. In fact I have come to the realization that no matter how long we have been walking with Christ or how strong our walk may be, Christians still ask themselves if the dream they have been given is truly from God.
My pastor has recently announced to our church that God has placed a dream in his heart and soul. This dream is to buy a parcel of land and build a new campus. This project is much larger than anyone thinking in the flesh would think is possible. This dream has been accepted by many in the church, but there are others that have turned away as the result of my pastor proclaiming this dream.
My desire is to watch the glory of God bring this dream into fruition, but my flesh causes me to wonder if perhaps this is more than can possibly be accomplished. I find myself praying that this dream come into being, and while I am concerned as to whether we can pull this off, I worry more that my pastor must be struggling with doubt.
While I am counting on God and know that my pastor is as well, this means that we must endure a waiting period. In the season of waiting for these promises of God to be fulfilled, discouragement becomes strong. It is during this period that we must ask ourselves some questions:
Does this dream fulfill God’s desires?
God is not for greed, hate, jealousy, anger, bitterness, pride, selfish gain or deceit. So if any of the dreams in our hearts bring out these attributes in us, most likely…it is not of God.
God is for love, goodness, generosity, and mercy, No matter how big, crazy sounding or wild our dreams are…if these things are represented, God is in it.
“What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” -Romans 8:31
#2 Am I willing to pay the price of this dream?
The cost of a God given dream is often very high after all if it wasn’t higher than we can achieve, then we wouldnt need him to help us with it. All of the dreams that God gives us require us to depend on him in order to be fulfilled.
We all have probably given up on god at one time or another. I know I have personally given up on God before He’s even had a chance to work because I needed to have things my way. My dreams were isolated. I’ve learned the hard way; I cannot bring my agenda to God and ask Him to bless it.
Maybe it would help to remember how much is at stake because we need things our way?
“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. -Isaiah 55:8
#3 Am I alone in this dream?
As we pursue God dreams in our hearts people will discourage us. They may not do this intentionally but Satan needs us discouraged and will sometimes use those closest to us to bring us down.
You may have people that you thought would be friends forever with leave your side as you walk towards your dream. God created us with a need for community and when we feel alone, we will feel discouraged.
God always starts a movement of Him with one person but it always ends up with a community built around it. Know that your season of loneliness won’t stay forever. Be open to those God is bringing to you. He just may use the most unlikely person in your life.
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” -Isaiah 41:10
Please know that if the dream you have fills these points then you are a recipient of a dream from God. You need to know that God is ready to move forward. Take inventory today. God won’t give you a dream if you do not have the resources to realize that dream. Remember that when that dream seems impossible that he wants you to depend on him to realize the dream. Our dreams make us grow and stretch beyond our current abilities and God desires for us to depend on him. Don’t be “just a dreamer”, be a doer and achieve what only God could dream of.