May 18, 2011

Scribbled-On Dreams

Did y’all love Tracie Miles and her encouragement for us? I sure did! Her wise words encourage me as I jump off the train of negative thinking! Hope you’re jumping too… if you’re new, you can catch up here!

Today, another one of my P31 friends is joining us. Marybeth Whalen is a phenomenal author with an intense love of 80s music… what’s not to love! Her passion and zeal for truth and hope inspires me. No doubt her words will lift you up too! Please check out any one of her stellar books or hop over to her blog…you’ll love it!

Here’s Marybeth!

“Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders you have done. The things you have planned for us no one can recount to you; were I to speak and tell of them, they would be too many to declare.” Psalm 40:5 (NIV)

Recently I learned that a book that I had given up on was miraculously going to be published after all. I was amazed at God’s power and His timing. I was ecstatic that He opened doors that I thought were shut forever. As I dug out the original notebook I had once designated to hold the papers and notes I would need for this project, I was shocked to find that almost every page in that notebook was scribbled on by my youngest child. Her artwork made every page unusable! I chuckled to myself as I closed the notebook and went in search of another one to use instead.

Later I reflected on my decision to hand over that notebook to my child. What had made me do that? I knew that it was because the project was, in my estimation, worthless, forgotten. The notebook represented something that would never be. It epitomized the death of a dream. Why not let my daughter fill in the pages with her toddler scribbles? I must have reasoned that nothing else would ever fill those pages!

And yet we serve a God who can blow new life into a dead dream. I had forgotten all about the book I once yearned to write. I had moved on in search of a new dream. But God had not forgotten. His plan was different—and longer—than mine. His vision was further reaching. His outcome never consisted of me writing my dream off as worthless and unachievable. Instead He wanted me to trust in Him even when the situation looked hopeless.

Do you have a dream that looks dead from where you are standing? Have you thrown in the towel, chalked your efforts up to experience and moved on? Just don’t move so far that God can’t bring you back to the dream when He is ready. Don’t fill in the pages of your notebook with hopeless scribbles and not give Him room to fill the pages with His Word, words of life and hope and vision. Yes, surrender your dreams—holding onto them lightly and always keeping His plans as your purpose, ready to lay down anything He asks because no dream is more important than Him. But also remember that God loves to bring about the unexpected, throwing us little surprise parties that bring joy to His Father’s heart.

My notebook now serves as a reminder—in childlike script—of God’s ability to overcome the impossible and open doors that were once slammed shut. I wouldn’t trade those scribbled-on pages for anything! Now I look forward to filling the pages of a new notebook with all new dreams. Dreams that were handed back to me when I least expected it.

Dear Lord, please help me to trust You when things don’t work out and I have to surrender my dreams. Help me to rest in the fact that You see things from a much bigger vantage point than I ever could. Help me to know that You always have my best interests in mind, even when You close doors I wanted open. And help me Lord to be ever mindful of Your power that is always at work—even when I can’t see it. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Going Deeper

Do you have a dream you believe is dead? Spend some time writing about that dream in your journal today. Describe it in detail, and then ask God for His purposes to be revealed and His plans to be accomplished. Then spend time praising Him in advance for what He will do with your dreams.

Why do you think dreams are important to us? Do you allow yourself to dream? Have you allowed broken dreams to stop you from dreaming altogether?

Meditate on these verses:
Psalm 136:6, “Give thanks to the God of heaven. His love endures forever.”
Psalm 105:4, “Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.”

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  1. connecting with the soul says:

    Hello Ladies and thank you for this post. My dream was being an author a "Published" author. I wanted to write the greatest novel ever. ( That was my goal as a child when my stories were mystery, detective and ghost and the occasional love story. Unfortunately they missed one thing Jesus. AS I got older and a few rejections under my belt, my notebook was used for other things as well and I just wrote for me. That still happened even as I grew up.

    But a few months back during my quiet time I came across John 7:4
    "No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world."

    AS I read that verse, I felt God was telling me not to give up He had a better plan for my writing, after all He did give me a gift and love for writing. I was just using it the wrong way. I was looking to please a publisher and not God. So heres the prayer I prayed that day

    "Father help me reach those who need to hear your words. Guide my hand and my heart to help teach your laws, Commands and Rules for life. Let there be less of me and more of you. Be my hands and feet and continue to guide me where you want me to go." Amen.

    It wasnt about me getting stories out there others can do, but to get God's Word out there to those who need it the most.

    Ok back to my corner I go

  2. I don't think my dream is actually dead, I just can't see the how. I have to remind myself sometimes once a day, sometimes once an hour and other times once a minute it is not how but Who.


  3. Fields of gold says:

    Deborah, this is awesome: "
    It wasnt about me getting stories out there others can do, but to get God's Word out there to those who need it the most." Wow, such great truths! Thank you for leading other's to streams of cool waters and grasses of refreshment.


  4. Fields of gold says:

    "Not how but Who." I needed that gracious reminder today, Kandi. Thanks sister!

  5. Danielle says:

    I thought my own dreams of writing a book were dead and burried with the ungoldly writing I partook of years ago. But in the last year God has placed one stepping stone in front of the other. Some I've had to stand on and ponder, others were just a light brush of my flip-flop covered feet. I didn't think I'd have the opportunity ever again… But God can take even the shameful things of our past–things we want to keep hidden and use them as a marker for new beginnings.

  6. connecting with the soul says:

    Amen to that Danielle.

  7. Thank you Marybeth! Recently a dream just died. But I know that in God's great love and wisdom He has it all planned out, I just don't see it now. I am just seeking Him, not what He has for me or where He wants me, but HIM. That's my dream at the moment. ~Tammie

  8. Fields of gold says:

    Danielle, LOVELY words!! How the Lord works all things for good always amazes me when I see Him in action. He is faithful to complete every work He starts in you… excited for this journey of book writing you're on, friend!

  9. Fields of gold says:

    Tammie, praying as you walk out the grieving from the death of your dream that hope stays with you and your heart swells with joy in HIM.

    He's got good, solid plans for you. Sounds like you're clinging to Him… couldn't be in better hands!!

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