“For nothing is impossible with God.” Luke 1:37
This is the First Sunday in Lent. I am focusing this time, and hopefully and prayerfully, always, on developing my ability to dream and with God to make those dreams a reality.
Most people do not dream big enough. Most people give up on their dreams too early.
Most people get disillusioned by the economy, or correct conditions around them. But, if you take a closer look at yourself, I think you may not be most people. Let’s know that you have a power with you that others may not have realized. You have the full power of God working in and through you to make your dreams become a reality.
Miracles can happen in your life when you walk with God. Do you realize that nothing is impossible for you when you walk with God? It is the truth for you, because nothing is impossible to God.
Here is a positive affirmation saying that always seems to be uplifting: “Today I will attempt something so impossible that it would be absolutely impossible if God were not in it.” It will cause you to spiritually stretch and become more than you would be by yourself.
I like that. I want to be more than I can be by myself. I want to walk with God. I want to do things with God. I want to follow the dreams that God has for me.
The worst thing we can do is to go through life in a daze, half afraid doing what we did yesterday and allowing tomorrow and the day after that and the month after that and the year after that to be exactly the same. We have to stretch ourselves and go after the unknown, go after our dreams. In order to lift ourselves out of the daze, we have to be filled with God’s everlasting courage and strength.
God’s Courage and strength are sometimes beyond our human ability because the human self loves security, and it feels comfortable in what it knows already. We have to be a faith-filled person putting on the full courage of God and go after things we would never do ordinarily.
Every person reading and hearing this has a dream. Some of those dreams are dormant, but you have a dream. You have something that has been nudging inside of you, maybe for half a lifetime, but it is there awaiting manifestation.
Here are five major principles to see if your dream is worth investing your time, talent, and energy.
Mary Manin Morrissey in her book “Building Your Field of Dreams” talks about this.
“When people come to me in a counseling session, they will often tell me their dream and then they will say, “Is it worthwhile?’”
That is the big question. Should I be doing this or not? That is what you are going to decide today as you answer the questions in your own mind.
You cannot find the secrets of life in someone else. Even when you come here, no one can’t give you all the secrets of life. We can only point in the direction of the secrets of life. The signposts point within you. When you attend church – you get motivated enough, you turn within in prayer and you again find the strength and the vitality of God that you have inside of you. This can happen in whatever location you choose when you know – church, chapel, Bethel, etc.
Question number one: What is your dream?
You realize as you become a spiritual person, you can write your own destiny with God’s help. You can write your own destiny and you become what you dream. With God’s help, you will have the courage enough to go after your dreams in your own life.
I’m encouraging you this morning to dream, but not to dream alone—dream with God. Dream dreams in your life that will stay with you ever after. Dreams that will change your ideas. Dreams that will transform you like water into wine and alter the color of your thinking.
Take that dream that you have held inside of you, embraced sometimes, hugged sometimes, put aside sometimes.
Do you feel more alive when you think about your dream? Does your energy level rise? Are you filled with vitality and excitement when you think about your dream?
Do you know what this is that you are in? You are in a laboratory. It is a laboratory of life. This church is a laboratory of faith. This laboratory is to bring forth your dream with God’s help.
Your essence, not your history, will bring your dream forth.
Who you were yesterday, what you have been through, will not bring forth your dream. Your history of all the limitations and the setbacks you have had in your life, even all the successes will not bring forth your dream. It is your essence-who you are right now that will bring forth your dream.
Here is an interesting piece of trivia that applies to our subject today. “Jamaica is a wonderful place to visit, but there is another name that the long time residents use. It is a name that means, “The land of look behind.” For a long time it was a slave state. The slaves would escape to one place in Jamaica, in the mountains where there were heavy thorn briers. They would crawl into the briers and into the thorns because they knew they would be safe there. The people who tried to control their lives would not follow them into the thorns. Still, even in the middle of the thorns in areas they had cut out and lived in, they were always looking behind. Therefore, it received the name, the land of looking behind.”
We, too, are slaves when we live in the land of looking behind. We, too, are slaves when we think, “Well, I can’t do that, because after all, I have only done this.” Attempt something today so impossible that it will only be possible if God is in it. Because God does not look to your history, but to your essence of who you are right now and what you are willing to do with your life. Thank God. It says all through the Bible that what counts is who you are today and what you are connected to.
Your fears are based on your own history. They live in the land of look behind. To begin your dream that you have in your heart, you take baby steps. The distance is nothing. It is only the first step that is difficult. That is the one step that is important. The question you need to ask yourself here at the beginning of this lesson is, “What is that first step that I can take?” Take a little baby step toward the direction of your dream because your dream has God in it. The dream, you will find has a life of its own, but first you have to breathe life into it and you have to give it attention. Attention leads to enlightenment.
When you feed your dreams instead of your fears, God will be there at your side. We are never afraid of what we know. Even if we are in a known hell, we can make ourselves comfortable there because we know it. We are sometimes afraid of our dream because it is the great unknown. “Where will it take us?” we ask. “What changes, what sacrifices will I have to make? I realize that to go after my dream, my life will change.” That is why we talk every Sunday about taking the hand of God and walking with God. God will give you the strength, courage, and power you need to go after your dream.
Mary Morrissey tells the story of a time when she was riding an ATV on beach. That vehicle is like a motorcycle except it has three wheels. They were going over sand dunes and just having a wonderful time. She noticed that her kids were fearless. She had a little bit of fear. She would start going up a sand dune but she couldn’t make it to the top. She would try over and over again, but each time she would only make it up about halfway and then she would slide back down.
After watching her, her son-in-law came over and said; “Do you realize Momma, you have power that you are not using. I’ve noticed that you have been giving it gas, but you have your foot firmly on the brake.” It was an “ah-ha” experience for her. How many people are like that when they go after their dreams? We give it a little gas, but we keep our foot firmly on the brake. We have power that we are not using. We have to use all of our power and allow that dream to come through.
Question number two:
When you think about your own dream, does it align with your core values?
First, in your life you have to examine who you are and what is important to you. Make sure when you go after your dreams, that your priorities are in your number one in your life,
otherwise your life will be lacking. Get close to God and ask for guidance on your core values.
Question number three: Are you willing to grow?
If you go after your dream, are you willing to grow? So often we live not only in the land of look behind, but we live contained within our own thought and the stagnation of our own brain. We have river reed thinking. Baby elephants are just as cute as can be although massive in size. When they are training a baby elephant, they will take strings made out of river reeds and wrap them around the neck of the baby elephant and lead it along. It will be contained by that reed. Trainers will pull and the baby elephant will go where they pull.
But as it grows, that baby elephant is no longer a baby. It is a massive, huge elephant that could go anywhere it pleases. Yet, even at full size with all of the power, it still is contained in thought by the strings made from river reeds.
Margaret Chase Smith once said, “When people keep telling you that you can’t do a thing, you kind of like to try it.” Here was a lady who did many things in her life. She was motivated through discontent, by not believing what others said, but by believing she could go beyond what they said about her. She was not contained in their thought. Some people have chosen to be contained in another human being’s thought about us.
Do not be contained or limited in your thought. Your dream can be as big as your concept of God. No idea can get through the mind that thinks it is impossible. You have to believe this morning with me that this dream is possible with God and it can be done. You have to move toward your dream. Be ready and willing to be redirected at any moment as you proceed toward your dream.
Let’s take a look at this story in Matthew 14:22-33. “Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but by this time the boat, battered by the waves, was far from the land, for the wind was against them. And early in the morning he came walking toward them on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, `It is a ghost!’ And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, ‘Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.’ Peter answered him, ‘Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.’ He said, ‘Come.’ So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came toward Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’ Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, ‘You of little faith, why did you doubt?’ When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, ‘Truly you are the Son of God.”‘
Many of us have heard many, many sermons on how Peter was a failure because he sank in the water. He wasn’t a failure at all because he had the experience. The 11 others didn’t even try; Peter tried. We don’t fail when we try. He had the glory of actually walking on the water; then he had the grace of being lifted. So will we when we go after our dream.
Question number four: In your dream do you need God to make it come true?
Become or make stronger you Partner with God. We often say things like, “It came to me out of the blue.” Where is the blue? It is God’s miracles coming through you and into your life.
Measure your dream from where God is, not from where you are.
One of the most powerful ways to build a dream is to form a prayer partnership with other believing people. I’m going to ask you to find two or three others in your life to pray with-not doubters, people who can believe in you even when you cannot believe in yourself. Then you can say to another person when they are going through a tough time going after their dream, `Believe in my belief.” Together you will build a bigger believing. Jesus said, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them” (Mt.18:20). Then you have a believing mind that has a new life of itself.
As you go forward, get partners in believing in your dream. If you believed it wasn’t impossible, what would you be doing right now?
Question number five: From where you are standing can you see in this dream, good for others?
That is crucial. As you rise in stature you are not just doing this for your own ego self. Everything is created twice. This computer was originally an idea and a dream in someone’s head. Then it was created in manifestation. Everything is created twice. Everything was thought first. Everything also benefits twice. If it is of God it benefits you and then it radiates out from you to benefit many others. When you are going toward the harvesting of your dream, you have to keep that in mind.
As you go toward the harvesting, realize your dream is building you, and you are really harvesting yourself. If you can imagine it right now, right here, if you can dream it here and now, it exists, first in your thought and second in manifestation with God’s help.
I am leaving the “Land of Look Behind. Come along and let’s all dream BIG again!
God bless your dreaming!