Believing in your own dreams
What is your dream for your life? Some of us lean toward dreaming a little bit more. We have big visions of what our lives could become if we would hustle more and partner with God to get there.
Our people don't always believe with us...
The thing about dreams is that other people don't often get ours. Sometimes what gets birthed in our hearts goes unappreciated by those who care about us most. Our people may worry whether you'll end up in box on the street or that you may be messing up your chances with what you already have.
Little known fact. Those closest to us may have the hardest time getting enthusiastic about our dreams. Mostly because your dreams affect them. You dream may affect them with worry about you. Or it may change how you interact with them. They may feel left behind because they're unsure of what they're dream is.
The bravest thing you and I can sometimes do is put our dream out there. To give it wings. To share it with someone who may or may not get it or be enthusiastic about it.
But your dream and my dream - it's not about what others think about it. It's not about what your friends can process about your brave steps of faith. Your dream is about obedience to God's calling on your life. Your dream is about stepping out of your comfort zone into the magic of trusting God for your dreams. Your dream is for you and God and His kingdom.
So what's a girl to do? Before we look for validation in our friends and family, you and I should believe in our dreams for ourselves.
What is your dream?
To believe in your dream, you probably need to have some idea of what your dream is. Determining your dream for God can take some soul searching and life experience and quite frankly, it doesn't happen overnight. I'm not gonna lie. I wish it did.
Instead, it takes reflection and examination of where you've been, where God is leading you, and how He's created you. I believe God uses every minute, every experience, and every skill to plant dreams in our heart that only come from Him.
So, start a worksheet that you can carry with you. Start recording four areas of your life.
- Your gifts
- Your abilities
- Your interests
- Your personality/character
God knows what he's doing in knitting you together just the way He has. You were made on purpose for a purpose. So lean into your gifts, abilities, interest and personality. Start writing down the things you love.
And those things that keep coming back over and over again? Those are the dreams God is planting in you. But it starts with knowing yourself enough to know how God will use all of you for His kingdom.
Is your dream from God?
As a Christian life coach, many of my clients ask the same question. How do I know it's God telling me to do this? The short answer...you don't. We walk by faith not by sight.
The long answer is that we have to put ourselves in places where we get to know the voice of God. We need to spend regular time with Him. Study His Word. Prayer. Connection with other Christians. And then, we need to make the time to listen.
I believe God speaks to you in ways that are unique to you. My own journey was a still small voice and a nagging holy discontent that prompted my big leap into starting a business and leaving my job. Your experience may be different.
If you're hesitating on pursing your dream, your not alone. Following your dreams no matter what others may think and leaving the comfortable takes courage. As humans, we want to be sure and confident and avoid all the hard stuff of failing and starting over and wondering if this is really what we're supposed to do.
Here's the thing I typically tell my clients. God can't steer a parked car. Following your dreams isn't always about stepping off of a giant cliff. Sometimes following your dreams is a baby step. It's doing the next thing right in front of you to get you one step closer.
What difference will it make?
Back in my early days of coach training, we set intentions by answering three questions. The last question we asked was what difference will it make to accomplish your goal or intention. I ask the same of you.
When you know what your dream is and you know it's from God, there is a God confidence that infuses each step of the process. But from my own experience and three years in, I will say the journey to following your dreams is in no way easy. The reality is that there are still people who ask more "how" questions rather than saying "you go girl". There are still places where I fail or when it feels to hard to keep going.
In those hard moments, it's important to remember the difference your dream will make. When you dream is from God, He has a bigger plan than providing a job you will love everyday. He wants to use your skills and gifts and personality for His kingdom and His glory.
When you and I can envision the difference living our dreams will make, we're able to be resilient through those hard days when we wonder why we started in the first place. When we remember that our dreams are making a difference, we keep pursuing what God has for us.
Those people who question and wonder if you should be pursuing your dream? Just know that they love you. That their intention is to be supportive by being practical. And when you're building your dreams, you need a mixture of people to walk with you along the way..
So who do you need as traveling partners? Start with God and start believing in your own dreams even before you share them with the world. Add a warrior or two who will remind you that you were made for this even when the road gets bumpy. And bring along those logical friends to keep you grounded when your dreams aren't paying the bills quite yet.
Mostly, obediently put one foot out of the boat and follow where Jesus leads. The safest place to be in life is in the middle of His path for your journey.