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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Permission to Dream

 
“You are never too old to set another goal or dream another dream.” C.S. Lewis
 
I’ve been talking with a lot of my friends- women that are in their mid to late twenties- about the reality of being at a crossroads in their life and unsure what the next steps should be. They’ve been out of college for a few years now and the newness of having a “grown-up” job has worn off. Some have gotten married, and then a few may even be pregnant or have an infant; others steadily plodding along in their singleness; all desiring to live the abundant life that they are called to.
In talking with these dear ones, I’ve seen a trend, a common theme as of late and somewhere along the way they have believed a lie that they are stuck. I hear the desperation in their voices and the helplessness in their eyes as they brim up with tears.
And I can’t help but scratch my head and wonder where this “feeling stuck” is coming from. I have heard this thing before in what is known as a “mid-life crisis,” but not someone in their twenty-somethings. If truth be told, I too have felt this way before: at a seemingly dead-end, or backed into a corner with nowhere to go.
Then immediately I remember that the Enemy, the Father of all lies, is the one whispering to them these lies, deceiving them and accusing them that they are “stuck.” The Enemy tells them that this is a dead end, there is no way to advance and that they might as well get comfortable, because this is as good as it’s gonna get.
Then the mama bear in me gets angry, because how dare he tempt these dear ones to despair?! My dear friend, Elizabeth, wrote this a few months back as we were e-mailing back and forth along these same lines of thought:
“I think Satan is a big fat jerk for bullying us into a corner with his LIES (aka, NO truth involved) that we aren't in a good spot, that we aren't going to make it to the place/position/purpose that we dream of living in (with God-given desire), that we are stuck in the 'wrong' spot and can't/won't get out. Satan = big ugly liar.”
 To which I say “Preach it sister!!” Once one recognizes these as lies, that is half the battle. Cierra, another dear friend, has a coined phrase that says “We fight not for victory but FROM victory.”  In one of the most beautiful chapters in the Bible, Romans 8 shouts from the rooftops these rich promises:
33 "Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; 34 who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. 35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 Just as it is written,
For Your sake we are being put to death all day long;
We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

As I continue the conversation with said friends, I encourage them to give themselves permission to dream again- the possibilities are endless! The Enemy wishes to derail you, because he knows if he can paralyze you with fear, then half the battle is won. I challenge them to identify those lies that are being said to them and treat them as weightless- going in one ear and immediately out the other- holding no weight or value in your life. I love Brennan Manning’s description of faith, hope and trust: “Faith arises from the personal experience of Jesus as Lord. Hope is reliance on the promise of Jesus accompanied by the expectation of fulfillment. Trust is the winsome wedding of faith and hope.”

  Let’s trust in our Sovereign God and in the gifts, talents and abilities that He has so graciously given us for His glory. Let us have the courage that is needed in giving ourselves permission to dream.
 

 
 


1 comments:

Kels

I love hearing you encourage and speak truth - and no wonder, because it's your native language! Love you, friend!

"Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude."
Colossians 2:6-7
I want my life to be flowing with an attitude of gratitude towards my Lord, Jesus Christ. How could I not? He has given me abundant life and it is my prayer that I clearly represent Him in every area of my daily life of what He did on the cross on my behalf.