One of my absolute favorite pastors is Mark Batterson of National Community Church in DC. I haven't met him yet but I hope to before I'm 30 (a fast-approaching deadline)!
Mark's blog is a daily must-read for me. I almost always glean something from his experiences and insight, but this past Tuesday's post caught my attention in a major way: Womb of Imagination ...I just keep going back to it. I've probably read it 6 or 7 times in the past several days.
For most of my life I did not consider myself to be much of a dreamer. From a young age I tended toward cynicism, and this had quite a negative impact on my self-perception. In recent years I've realized most of what I considered myself to be for most of my life was based on skewed thinking.
For if I look back far enough, I recall that I was indeed a wildly imaginative child, and creative too. When I was 3 I regularly set up tea parties for my stuffed animals and I. My sister and I created entire worlds and "tv shows" with highly developed characters, relationships, and plots. I got an indoor "tree house" of sorts when I was 6, and would spend hours in it playing house and reading books with/to Teddy Ruxpin (80's children, remember him?). I was writing poetry and short stories for fun in second grade. I loved nature and science, and in third grade my greatest dream was to go to California to see the giant Redwood trees. I do remember thinking that was something that would probably never happen for me, though I believed it to be possible for others. By high school I was a full-blown cynic, passing judgment on "dreamers" while secretly envying their optimism.
All this to say, for years I falsely considered myself to be a non-dreamer. I now understand that it wasn't that I didn't dream, but rather that I allowed my insecurity, fear and feelings of inferiority from even a young age to squash my dreams before I could get my hopes up.
Now, back to Mark Batterson's blog. I've been captivated with these lines for days now:
"Almost like the moment of conception, dreams are single-celled organisms that so often don't make it to full-term. Most dreams miscarriage because we give up on them while they are still in the womb of the imagination. But when a God-ordained dream becomes reality, it's like the birth of a baby. Joy unspeakable!"
I don't want to be the poster child for miscarried dreams! I don't want to give up on a dream if it is a "God dream"! I don't want to be led by fear and dismiss dreams in the womb of the imagination. I don't want to put limits on myself, because the Spirit of God lives in me, and He is without limit. I want to be one through whom the Spirit of God dreams BIG- dreaming dreams that are impossible apart from a collision with the Divine! Dreams that necessitate His intervention every time!
I want to be one who nurtures and carries these God-ordained dreams to full term, laboring to see them come to fruition for the glory of God.
(I forgot about my dream of seeing the giant redwood trees for probably 10 years, right up until the brisk spring day in 2004 when I stood before hundreds of those wooden giants. It was surreal, remembering my dream at the very moment it came true. I still have bark from that first Sequoia I touched, a momento to forever remind me that dreams do come true.)
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