Tag Archive | dream

Childhood Dreams

Reading Time: 2 minutes

What did you want to be when you grew up? Many of us have dreams that were either unrealistic or abandoned.

When I was in high school I told my father I wanted to be a DJ. I loved music and while I adored singing I realized I didn’t have the chops to be a professional singer. So I figured if I could be the one who talked between the songs I’d be in heaven. My dad burst that bubble quickly. He told me that DJ’s don’t get paid much and work crappy hours. Apparently they used to have one as a neighbor. Later in talking with a DJ I discovered he actually used a different name on the air because people could be threatening to an on air personality. Wow. Hadn’t thought of that. Guess I dodged a bullet? Still I think I would have a good radio voice if I could kill the “ah” and “um” that pops up when I speak.

I still love music and age has tempered my dreams. God opened up a door for writing and I’m in a position where my husband loves that I’m working from home. While it would be nice to actually make more money with a 9-5 job, it satisfies my creativity and I am a homebody at heart. It does come with challenges like any job, because I do need to do things that are harder: sit down and focus to write, marketing, editing.

The best part is writing that first draft. There’s an exhileration in seeing the characters come to life. It’s easy to distract myself from the “work” part of that. I think sometimes it is because I don’t want to finish the story because then the harder stuff happens. Editing. Submitting. More editing. Criticism. Contract. Editing. Editing. Editing. Marketing. Marketing. Marketing.

It takes a lot of hours to produce a book which is why it can be years from completing a rough draft to seeing it in print form in your hand. When I read it again, I fall in love with the character and stories and am in awe of the God who called me to do such things. The gift of writing is from HIM, and not of my own design. I pray I’ll be a good steward until He tells me to stop. He’s also given me opportunities to teach about theology, leadership, and writing and I’ve discovered I love doing that even more than singing. Cool, huh?

How about you? What dreams did you have and have you found a way to perhaps live a better dream? If so, what is it?

The Struggle for Silence

Reading Time: 3 minutes

I’m spoiled in that with no kids in the home anymore, so my days can be very quiet. You can hear the keys as I type on my laptop and the windchimes on my porch. But it wasn’t always this way.

I’m one of those who needs space to think. Peace. Quiet. Solitude. I used to have to do this early in the morning before my kids arose. Sometimes one of them, usually my daughter, would soon rise to follow just because she wanted to be close to me. She’s an adult now and living elsewhere.

I’m OK with the quiet. Sometimes I do like noise, maybe music while I fold laundry or work in the kitchen preparing dinner, although sometimes I’ll have the news on then so I can get a feel for what’s happening in the world. Very rarely do I play music while I write and if I do, it’s more likely to be instrumental or classical.

But my day, if possible, starts with solitude. It may only be thirty minutes or an hour – depending on my mood and what I’m reading. I read the Bible, focus on who God says He is and journal my dreams, life, prayers, whatever strikes my fancy. I have a note pad nearby to write down things that pop into my head that I want to pay attention to at some point but am I afraid I’ll forget. Sometimes I read a short passage of a book. Right now I’m working v-e-r-y slowly through The Treasury of the Psalms (Vol 1) by Charles H. Spurgeon. So rich in content and I’m working to savor what I’m learning. Sometimes I’ll read other books too that help me to grow.

There are few variations on this depending on circumstances. If I do it later in the day, or in a different location, I’m fine with that.

Solitude allows time to process life. Feel the emotions I didn’t have time to really focus on in the moment. Dream. Pray.

The quiet is not a boring place but can be extremely full and exciting–it can also be calming to my spirit. I’ve been thinking more about this lately as it’s come up in the small group that meets in our home. I’ve been encouraging them to find time for silence. My husband, Ben, finds it when he drives and spends that time going through a long prayer list. He’s so faithful in this practice and that’s what he feels called to do. If he can’t pray during the drive he finds a chair to sit in while at his shop or at our garage space at home, to be quiet and pray. It’s not a quick space of time but it’s important to him in his walk with the Lord, just like my time in the morning is.

Where do you find solitude, the quiet in your life and what kind of difference does it make in your day? This is not on a list of “do it or die” kind of things. For me it is part of connection to God, being ready for whatever He has in store for me, and self-care. All rolled up into one. I even created a special space in my office, just for this time. Do you have a special time and place where you meet with Jesus? What does that look like?

Dream Chaser

Reading Time: 3 minutesIt has been some time since I’ve written here and I wish I could give you some grand excuses as to why. Life has been busy and to be honest, I don’t want to write something just to have a post unless I believe I have something of value to say. If I think long and hard I could probably come up with things, but as a single mom of three Hobbits (that’s what I call my teenagers), life gets crazy at times.

I often use my rare profundity in my real-life, face-to-face interactions with people, whether my friends, or those I meet at conferences when I go to speak, teach, and encourage. 

I admit that life is a challenge at times too.

Depression is an old friend who comes to visit when I least expect, uninvited and unwanted. 

I’m heading into shoulder surgery in a few weeks and that has me a bit scared. Not of the surgery itself, but of the recovery as I am unable to take most pain medications.

I will survive somehow. By God’s grace, I always do. 

I took this photograph in May when I traveled to Colorado. This is south of Pike’s Peak and it was a stunning sight to see I couldn’t help but try to take a picture.

Seeing this display of God’s glory was breathtaking. The mountains, the people I met, the chance to be in a new environment and watch what God would do, was inspiring. 

I realized something very striking.

I live my life too small.

My characters in my novels much more readily go above and beyond in their adventure in living. But not me. I sit behind a keyboard and fabricate stories that hopefully share God’s truths to the reader while entertaining them. Not a bad job by any stretch of the imagination, but it is a lot of hard work for little gain.

That sounds so negative, doesn’t it? Maybe I should clarify that is monetary gain.

God continues to provide for the needs of my family. And sometimes our wants. I get to travel periodically and meet amazing people on my journeys. That’s bigger than the life I used to live by far. And the future holds more promise of the same.

I’ve been challenged recently to dream. To think beyond my daily needs to greater things God might want to do in and through me. What’s surprising is I want to do what I’m doing. I get to write. What an honor to be able to do that. it’s not a smart career move financially but it’s a calling that God has honored. It is hard work. Not all of it is fun by any stretch of the imagination. And I ashamedly get so busy with writing and editing that I sometimes forget that I have a book to promote. Shameful, I know!

But I do want to do so much more than that and not surprisingly it’s not about making money.

It’s about having more opportunities to serve others, encourage them, and watch them dream wilder and bigger.

So I’m praying and have been challenged to dream bigger.

To stretch my imagination with “What if’s” and do things that might help me get there. It means stepping out of my comfort zone. Trying new things even if they scare me…like internet dating!

It means I might fail. I want to be responsible. I have three young people counting on me to be there for them. It might hurt (surgery).

It might mean letting go of some things to make room for better ones. 

So what are your dreams that you’ve been afraid to dream? Can you trust God with those and seek His guidance in reaching for them? If you struggle with depression it can be hard to dream of bigger and better things…but when I look at that photo of the mountains, I’m reminded we have a BIG GOD who can do amazingly, abundantly, more than we could ever think to ask. So I’m seeking Him as I lean into the future and I challenge you to do the same.

What are some of YOUR dreams?