There is something powerful about having a dream.
Take Martin Luther King Jr’s famous speech, ‘I Have A Dream’. It was not simply that he talked a good talk (and indeed walked the walk), but the inspiration and hopefulness of his words was and continues to be incredibly influential for millions of people in many different ways.
I think the times in my life when I’ve lacked a dream have been the hardest. The likelihood of being overwhelmed by negative thoughts and losing the motivation to act increases when we don’t hold onto some future hope. We find ourselves drifting along, growing numb to the people and possibilities around us. Obviously an unrealistic dream pursued to the point of obsession leads to self-destruction, so we need wisdom too. Having a dream is not a one-way ticket to ‘success’ (whatever that looks like).
But recently, I’m realising that we need dreams. I feel most alive when I’m chasing after a dream and I see a glimpse of it! The dream of our community is to see God’s kingdom come here in Stanford-le-Hope, for people to see who God is, to love him, and to throw their future into his hands. One thing that makes me supremely happy is seeing some of the young people in our community taking baby steps towards God in prayer, showing kindness to others, starting to understand God for themselves. Seeing the next little piece of the dream is life-giving for me, because it fuels my prayers: in gratitude, in asking for more, in trying to discern what the next step is. It fuels my friendships: I can’t stop talking about it, I want others to join in! And it fuels my resolve: seeing evidence of the dream keeps me going, it keeps me pursuing it.
A wise saying goes: “Where there is no vision, the people are discouraged.” So let’s flip it round: “Where there IS vision, the people are encouraged.”
Keep pursuing those dreams.
Keep asking God for the next step.