I will be 30 in a couple weeks. This is the age when so many of my friends and I are posting on Facebook about our dreams coming true. We post about getting married, job promotions, and having children. Some post about ministries coming to fruition; others about home renovations.
We all post about dreams coming true.
But most of us don’t post about dreams that do not come true – dreams that are lost.
Even when the lost dream is one of the closest things to our hearts, we stay silent.
Who would understand?
Sometimes we sacrifice it for other things that are more important -children, survival.
Sometimes the dream is simply beyond our grasp.
Either way the surrender of those dreams usually happens in silence.
Perhaps only our closest friends know how hard it is to let those dreams go. Often they don’t even know. (Who can truly understand another person’s heartache?)
But losing these dreams is an important part of the Christian walk.
This is surrender.
This is recognizing that God and His plan are enough for us.
In an amazing article on trust and surrender, a friend recently wrote about a dream that was lost. After 5 sons, she realized she may never get to mother a daughter. After prayer and some struggle, she surrendered it to God.
It really struck something with me.
Like all of us to varying degrees, I’ve needed to lay a dream on the altar and have been learning to trust Him more in the process. Through the surrendering of this dream and the embracing of His different plan for me, I’ve been learning several truths.
1. God is Enough for Our Joy
We don’t need ____ to be happy.
If we think we do, we are reducing God’s worth, and we are making that lost dream an idol.
We need to realize He is sufficient for us. He is enough. His grace is enough.
2. God is Enough for Our Purpose.
We were not created to do great things for God. We were created for Him to work His perfect will through us.
We try to make right decisions, and we make choices based on our priorities and interests and strengths. But who gave us those strengths and interests? God.
If we work, and he gives fruit, it is simply a gift.
The homemaker who faithfully serves her family and seeks to obey God in her humble day, is not less rewarded then the silver tongued evangelist who enjoys hundreds of golden opportunities to see God’s work.
Because it’s God’s work. He gives the increase.
The homemaker and the evangelist were simply called to faithfully play out their jobs.
We run with patience the race that IS SET before us. (Passive tense. We don’t set up the race. The only action word that we do is RUN.)
We are called to run what HE sets before us. And He gives the increase.
3. God’s Plan is Better
Right now my four-year-old wants more than anything to be a hero. He talks constantly about saving his sisters from the monster under the bed, saving all our friends at church from wild animals, and saving our family from bad men.
Wisdom has taught me that God’s plan for working out these desires in my son’s life may be very different than what my son imagines. God may plan for him to be a hero by being a provider for his family, a witness in his community, or a leader in his church. My son wants to slay a dragon.
Whatever God’s plan for him, it will be deeper and better than the crowd-pleasing grandeur he has planned for himself.
4. We Learn that God is Enough. Period.
If tomorrow one of us were stranded on a desert island.
Hope of rescue: Gone.
Every dream: Gone.
And we lived out every day with only Him. Only His love to comfort us when lonely, only His grace to strengthen us when discouraged, only daily communion with Him and hope of Heaven to give any joy, He would be ENOUGH.
If in the sorrow and isolation, we could fulfill our life’s calling to faithfully worship Him through prayer and remembrance of the Bible verses we’ve memorized, it would be ENOUGH.
Now to think, when we are surrounded by blessings of comfort, family, church, successes, those are simply extras!
ANY dreams realized are extras!
Because ultimately HE is ENOUGH!
What a joy then, in an act of obedience and love, to lay down lost those dreams, embrace what He does set before us, and thank Him for being ENOUGH for us.