Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Dreams Are Back!

Praise the Lord my dreams are back!

I have spent the last two to three months dreamless. Not dreamless while I sleep mind you. My mind is like a never-ending story that keeps talking to me long after I have stopped listening. The kinds of dreams I lost were the ones you have about the rest of your life. Dreams like, I want to be the ice cream man, or I want to have three baby girls and be a nun. (All dreams I once had in my lifetime. I know. I have lofty goals).

You see, 9 months ago I had dreams for my future and then God changed them. Completely. He took me to places I never dreamed of going, where in truth I did not particularly want to go. So I gave up my dreams. I figured, if God was going to change my plans anyway, why have them? Why not just let Him take the reigns completely?

News flash to myself: That was dumb. That is not at all what God intended.

Here is what happened tonight:

Tonight I went to happy hour with my professor and some other students. I broached a subject with him that had been on my mind since last quarter. He had said in class that if our appearance as Americans is going to prohibit our gospel message, then maybe we should not go. Well I freaked out! Heeelllloooooo I am quintessentially American looking. I am tall, blond....tall and blond...American! So I took that as, crap! All my dreams are out the window because I look too American to be a missionary. My talkative brain ate my last dream and refused to open its mouth.

So tonight, (praise be to God) I asked Dr. Myers what I should do in light of that. His response was a straight-faced "That wasn't what I meant at all." (Note to self: Apparently I get things wrong sometimes. This is why clarification is always a good idea.) He explained: It is not how you look that matters, it is how you act. It is your heart and your attitude. For example, if I went abroad and acted like a valley girl, that is what they expect of me. That prohibits an effective sharing of the gospel. But if I go and I love and I work hard to understand their culture and I break the stereotype of an American girl, then I can be most effective.

In fact, he suggested that I use the way I look to my advantage on the mission field. Because I stand out, I should use that as a platform to be something different than they expect. A platform by which I can portray an effective gospel message and people will listen.

Praise the Lord my burdens were lifted! Here I was giving up on missions because of what I thought he meant, when in fact I was completely wrong. Praise the Lord for correcting my misunderstandings!

So world! My dreams are back! And they are not leaving this time. Shall I share some with you?

-I dream of working internationally to serve God in a global context. Perhaps in Latin America, for that was always a dream of mine.
- I dream of having a husband who loves the Lord and wants to serve Him missionally by my side.
- I dream of being able to travel and raising my children with an awareness of the world around them.
- And one day, living near my friends. Living close enough that I can see them twice a year at least.

The world becomes very dry when we lose sight of our dreams. It becomes very empty. Yes, we are to have an eternal perspective and we are to trust God, but part of being on this earth is making something of ourselves so that God can use us.

Thank you God for making me see my misunderstandings.

Disclaimer: Obviously it is now obvious that I make mistakes and don't always understand things. I am constantly learning and in learning I am constantly changing my mind and opinions. This blog is a reflection of that process. So take everything I say with a grain of salt and feel free to disagree with me. 

1 comment:

  1. I think you meant have three baby girls OR be a nun. Nuns are generally discouraged from having babies of any kind.