No Two Dreams Are Alike
Wendy Treat | Christian Faith Center | Seattle, WA
I love and at times really dislike being in the ministry. I am a granddaughter, daughter, wife, mom, mother-in-law, sister, sister-in-law, and best friend of Pastors. The love certainly outweighs the dislike but I have definitely experienced some very challenging, unkind, and betraying moments.
So, do I share the shiny side or darker side? Both make it a wonderful journey that I wouldn’t trade for anything in this world.
There is not one of our Bible heros that does not have great joy and also great defeat in their story. Yet, too often in our Christian experience we try to live with our head in the sand, ignoring the loneliness, heartbreak, and lack of faith we may face. When we do this for any length of time, what we see is a guarded, potentially hypocritical, hurt leader.
I’ve decided not to be that person. After years in ministry, anyone can become that leader, but I want to encourage you today and shine light on God’s truth that you don’t have to be that leader. God has invited you to rise above that way of life and leadership. I’ve decided to walk a different path and I ask you, what path will you choose? Walking and living that path of victory is a constant decision. I have found that is real key, keep doing the God thing even when you don’t feel like it. Keep choosing. Keep pursuing Jesus, every single day.
What does that practically look like, you may be asking? For me, it can be as simple as keeping your smile. Choose to talk nice, drive slower, make eye contact, worship on purpose, and allow yourself to “go away” with God. Go to church early simply to find a new person to hear their story. Stay in love with reading/listening to your Bible. Find those few special friends and be real, laugh, cry, and FaceTime.
Are you living with a dream? Maybe you once had vivid dreams for what the future would hold but heartache and past pains can zap dreams from our hearts so fast. I pray that this is a gentle reminder, that God gave you those dreams and He isn’t the source of the heartbreak, only the healer of hearts and giver of dreams. Maybe it could be time to reignite the those tired dreams again?
In my experience, I meet with many women that have a short-term dream – find a boyfriend, get married, have kids, grow the kids, live happily ever after. While this makes for a nice movie, this is not real life. This is not all we are called to dream! There is more, so much more life to live. We have many more earth moments that God has for us to live fulfilled and successful. What are you dreaming of next in your life?
Be mindful that the moment God starts fusing your heart with dreams for the future; the fear is waiting at the door. Doubts and worries are coming in quickly on its heels, so get ready now because the best days are still ahead, even thru the fears and worries. Think about that and maybe stop and realize how little that matters. How often are we asked about our IQ when we reach out a hand to love a hurting person? How often do our doubts pan out to be a series hindrance? Once we are in motion, God uses our faith and directs our steps.
You may be thinking, I’m not that creative, or I’m not the right look, I’m too quiet, or I’m too loud (the devil repeats the same things to all of us). Corrie ten Boom is one of my all-time heroes of faith. Let me just be frank with you, she was a single, short, stout, person and never sought to be the glamorous superstar. Yet she lived a life with such a mission and vision from God. Our world is still reaping the benefits of her faithfulness and dreams. She lived to serve one person at a time, one prayer at a time.
We put so much emphasis on our outer person and not enough on who we really are in Christ. Second Corinthians 10:12 says, “For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.”
“Just do it”, the famous Nike slogan is a great moto for all of us to follow. When God gives the dream, go for it! Just say yes.
We need to quit asking ourselves if we should, if this the will of God, what will everyone think and what are the 47 steps to make it happen. If we have paralysis of analysis, we will never live out the life God is calling us to live. Stop seeking the applause of mankind and start training your inner ear to hear the applause of heaven.
When we started Christian Faith 38 years ago, I loved gathering women together and teaching the Bible weekly. That desire grew into wanting to gathering stronger which was called a women’s conference. I’d never seen one, or gone to one. Inside I just had a desire to gather women and have a passionate encounter with God. Many pastors started to come and take home to their church this great gathering idea. The key was the God desire and God encounter.
What God desire and God encounter is within you? What stirs you and makes you dream?
My big dream is God encounters that touches people’s heart and keeps them spiritually strong. Because of those moments created, through the hard valleys of their life they are then able to stand firm in Christ.
We women can change and impact our world. I mentioned at the beginning, I’m a granddaughter and daughter of Pastors. I’m so grateful to my grandmother and mom. They never had a title or income from their life service as being a pastors wife, yet they set a course of living there dream of loving people.
We only have a season of life to live our dream God gives us. Be aware of the season you are in and do not be frustrated to get though a season to quickly. Each season has tremendous joys and valleys. Live and grow through the season to enable you to get to the next and win it like a champion.