From: April & Julie ~
April: Sometimes when I think back to childhood, and my original BIG dreams, I think Wow, man, was I crazy? Yep, crazy awesome. I grew up a competitive gymnast. I ate, slept, and breathed gymnastics from age 3 to 18. My eyes were set on Olympic Rings, and my blood ran red, white and blue. There was no doubt in my mind where I was headed. But reality set in when, at age 14, I broke my back warming up a vault that I had performed hundreds of times. It set me back for months. In those months of rest and conditioning, I was able to step back and see what I was missing in “Normal Kid” land. And that was a lot. I also learned the politics of the sport and how difficult it is to make the US team, even if you are elite. I could have competed college if my back had returned to normal strength, but my heart started to change into wanting what was left of my childhood. So with time, I let go of that dream and started to dream new ones.
In college, I changed my major twice. It started as Mass Communications- because I wanted to be a news anchor. Then shifted to Art, where my gifts excelled. Then I realized my interest in Graphic Design. So that’s where I got my degree. My vision was to own my own business drawing logos and tattoos, and printing t-shirts. I wanted to work out of my own workshop, which we actually built in my back yard. I also found my love for music, and picked up a guitar and taught myself to play.
Then life happened.
Marriage, babies, walking family through drugs and rehab, another baby, more rehab, cancer, death of a spouse, and diabetes. That happened. In that order too. Obviously not all of that to me, but it directly affected me. You want details, just ask me.
I find myself wondering what happened to the Dreamer in me?
10 years later- I find myself wondering what happened to the Dreamer in me? Do I even allow myself to dream anymore? Or are they very safe and attainable-without-help dreams?
Julie: I was always a dreamer. My mom would get frustrated putting me in time out because I would just sit there and daydream about being a princess in a castle. I dreamed of being a lawyer, because I was great at winning an argument. I dreamed I would sing in a music band or be the next Sandy Patty. (showing my age here) I dreamed I would be a missionary and feed all the orphans in Africa. I dreamed of being a pilot and flying around the world… and all before the age of 13.
Then for a while I lost myself to life and my relationship with God became more of routine or what my parents believed. It was around 17 that I had a moment with God that was life changing. I then wanted to go into music. I started college with a vocal performance scholarship and ended up getting mono. I was put on vocal rest for months and in that time changed my major to Psychology. I wanted to open a counseling center for ministers but looking back this was more because I saw how broken people in ministry where, including my childhood, and less of what I am passionate about. I am really happiest when I am helping people.
But a lot of times you can hear other people’s dreams as yours if they are loud enough.
Broken dreams from life are some of the hardest to get over. Broken dreams sometimes never mend and then they sit on a shelf and get dusty. The Israelite’s had a dream of going to the promise land but because of sin they landed in the desert wandering for 40 years. They felt alone but that was not the case. Deuteronomy 2:7 “He was watched over your journey through this vast desert. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you, and you have not lacked anything.”
In moments when I thought I had forgotten my dreams or God had, he was walking with me and I lacked nothing.
April: In The Circle Maker, by Mark Batterson, he writes about how God is offended if your dreams and prayers don’t scare you. Well I’m afraid I’ve been short changing myself for a long time. When did I learn to pray “safe”? Why aren’t we learning to pray crazy stuff? Where are our BHAGS? (What Mark Batterson refers to as Big Hairy Audacious Goals).
My goal in life, right now, is to just be a good mom. My dream is to be available to my kids whenever and however they need me. No matter what age they are. But I want them to learn to pray crazy. And that starts with me. If I dream, they’ll never be afraid to. With that said, I need some BHAGs to make that happen.
Julie: I have some of the same goals as April, live my life so that my kids know Jesus. I dream of a day where I see them leading others to Christ and I want them to always know I am here for them. I also dream of a day of traveling to amazing places with my husband or being able to help him more in ministry. I want to pray crazy dreams again too, not with fear of hurt from the past, but just dreaming with hope.
Both: As we were talking at small group one day over coffee, we came up with what would be a really awesome dream. Moms helping moms. We open a coffee/tea house and serve pastries and food of all sorts and sell local talent art, music, books etc. The coolest part would be this. We would have enough moms (or whoever) to run the place that we only work once or twice per week. The rest of the time is devoted to our homes and families and worship team or ministry.
Then one day we can pass down the business to our kids.We would also have a space for small groups, ministry teams, mom’s groups or more to come and share a table and feel welcome.
We realize this sounds too good to be true and not sure how lucrative it will be. BUT, God loves Big Hairy Audacious Goals and He loves to show off. So for one we cannot wait to see how it turns out. We are still in the praying phase. God may blow our minds someday.
Until then, we are enjoying the process of dusting off dreaming and allowing ourselves to hope again.
So what are your dusty dreams?