Recently, I have been really intrigued by dreaming. Being the nerd that I am, I even watched a whole PBS documentary about dreams on Netflix. Don’t judge me. According to experts, dreams are seemingly fictional situations and events that we experience in our subconscious while in deep sleep. During our dream state, it seems that our bodies are paralyzed, while a myriad of realistic images and circumstances take place. Sometimes these ideas and situations make no logical sense, but experts contend that it is imperative that we dream in order to maintain our sanity. Culturally, some people believe our unconscious mind uses dreaming to convey important messages. Certain symbols and images in dreams have come to mean many different things to different people in their waking lives.
One of my very best friends exposed me to this quote a few years ago, and since then, I have become enthralled with it. Why? Because I’m a dreamer. I dream often. And when I do, I dream BIG. I envision the ideal with such grandiosity that sometimes I have to snap myself back into reality. I dream about the seemingly impossible, the unthinkable, and the unfathomable.
I must say that I’ve been blessed enough to witness some of my dreams come true. Even though I do dream big and often, it still blows my mind how and when my dreams do come true. Many times, they are better in reality; way better than I could even imagine.
Ever since I was a child, I have had a desire to do many things. It would literally take me until tomorrow to write all them down. My interests are so broad and sometimes unrelated that they would not make sense to a more logical person. Of course, with all of these things, the details weren’t concrete, but the general idea was there. Recently, the trajectory of my life has shifted right before my eyes. I’m witnessing another one of my life-long dreams finally come to fruition. Sometimes, the very thought of it overwhelms me with gladness, and I’m blown away. I live one charmed life. I can’t give all of the details away just yet, because they aren’t quite firm, but trust me when I say that it is huge. I’m dreaming awake!!
I don’t know if there’s a formula for “dreaming awake,” but I know of a few things that have been tried and true in my own life:
1). Know that “God can dream a bigger dream for you then you could ever dream for yourself”… I read this in a little inspirational book by Oprah entitled, What I Know For Sure. This quote was one that has stayed with me for years, and I am really beginning to understand exactly what it means. Remember when I said that oftentimes my reality is better than my dreams? That’s because God has crafted it. Even the Bible says that not only will He “give you the desires of your heart,” [Psalm 37:4] but He will bless you “exceedingly, abundantly above all that we could either ask or think.” [Ephesians 3:20] And, I’m a living testimony of these things, which is one of the many reasons why I love, serve, and make Him the center of my life. When you let God craft your dreams (and your reality), you will be amazed at how BIG and awesome both will be, because He will position you in right place at the right time to see what you’ve been dreaming and praying about come true. I often pray a simple prayer: “Lord, whatever you have for me, I want it, so prepare me for where You want me to be.” Speaking of which…
2). Carpe Diem, or “Seize the day”… I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m always conflicted about whether to take advantage of certain opportunities when they arise. It’s because I’m the type of person that needs to weigh the pros and cons of each decision and ascertain whether or not such an opportunity jives with my projected life path. But sometimes, you just gotta carpe diem! Again, this proves to be difficult for me because I’m a planner that always has a back-up plan, and back-up plan to back up the back-up plan…you get the idea. It’s also difficult for me to do because often my dreams come true at some of the most inconvenient interesting times. Just when I think that I have everything figured out, something changes. It’s one of the most frustrating things a type-A person like me can possibly experience. I think God does that to me to show that He’s the One that’s ultimately in control. He has to shift and move things in and out of my life to make a path more suitable for me to travel. But, I’m learning to discern which opportunities I should seize and which to wait on. Again, this is all with the Lord’s help. I’ve also learned that certain opportunities have a time-stamp on them. They won’t last forever, so it’s important to take advantage of them when they arise. I personally believe that life has seasons, and when seasons change, you have to go or get left.
3). “Write the vision and make it plain”[Habakkuk 2:2]… I’m a writer, so I’m partial to this piece of Biblical wisdom. But trust me when I tell you that it works. When you have a dream or a vision of something, write it down. But, don’t just write what you wish would come true…write down some tentative plans and ways you intend for that dream or vision to come to fruition. I do this for a couple of reasons: (a) things seem to be more concrete (in my mind) when I write them down. They seem more attainable. It’s something about seeing my visions on paper that motivates me to do something to make them happen; (b) I like to keep some type of tangible record of my goals, dreams, and visions to refer back to track my personal growth. Again, it also helps to see the things that you probably once thought were impossible, happen. I know that it helps me to put things in perspective. If God can do this, then SURELY He can do that!
4). Don’t stop belieeeeeeevin’! … I love that song by Journey. No matter how unthinkable or impossible it may seem well, except for winning that $300 million lottery…you have a better chance being struck by lightening on the second Tuesday of this week, don’t stop believing in your dreams. Did you know that one of the ways you can kill your dream is by what comes out of your mouth? I believe that my words have power. I speak my dreams into existence and I speak positively about them, because according to Proverbs 18:21, “the tongue has the power of life and death.” If you’ve let the Lord craft them, position you to see them happen, write them down and go about the business of making them come true, who says they won’t happen?! There may be some difficulties and set backs, but anything worth having is worth working for and sticking with.
So what are you waiting for? Dust those dreams off and go about the business of making them come alive! DREAM AWAKE :).