I’ve spent the past five years wondering, “Where will I be this time next year? What will I be doing? Where will I be living?”
I’ve been like a neglected houseplant, my leaves slowly curling. I had no roots.
Here at Maplehurst, we are in the freeze/thaw ugliness of midwinter, but I am fixated on the particular beauty of golden, late-afternoon winter light. I stretch toward the light and feel just how deep these roots can grow.
There are dreams planted everywhere here. Specific dreams about the vegetable garden and the blueberry bushes. Vague dreams about community and hospitality.
How did I get to this place? This place called Home? This place where dreams are realized?
I have no formulas to offer you. No guarantees. I suppose there are no shortcuts. All I have is this one thing: when I look back I see all the dreams we let go.
It turns out knowing when to let go of a dream is a necessary part of the dreaming life.
Jonathan and I fell in love at an inconveniently young age. He had always planned to attend medical school. He gave up that dream so we could marry. So I could earn a PhD.
We dreamed of moving overseas. We imagined living in Scotland or Ireland. We let the dream go and moved to Chicago. Spent two weeks hiking Ireland’s west coast, instead.
We dreamed of moving closer to family. Maybe a farmhouse in the Midwest? Close to grandparents in Kansas, not too far from grandparents in Texas. Instead, we moved to Pennsylvania.
When I tell you that my dreams are coming true, I do not mean I saw this life in advance. What I mean is this: life unfolds and something deep within us says, “Yes. This. Yes.”
A dream-come-true is a thing both surprising and deeply familiar.
It is the future you were made for before you even knew enough about yourself to dream it.
I have these words starred and underlined in my Bible, “May he give you the desire of your heart” (Psalm 20:4). One day I read those words, and it felt as if I’d tipped my head beneath a stream of warm water. That warm-water-feeling was real enough that I wrote the date, too. The ink is a bit smudged, but I can still read this: “So I pray / 12-14-2008.”
I didn’t write anything else, because, at that time, I had nothing else to write. I had no dreams. I had no desires. I couldn’t picture the future at all.
Now I know the most incredible thing. God not only gives us the desire of our hearts, he plants it there too.
He gives us the dream. He gives us the desire. He makes it come true.
And our hearts say, “Yes.”
I so loved this post! Oh, how I related to it. I wrote a post last month, titled “Redemptive Quest” discovering that in your words, “He gives us the dream. He gives us the desire. He makes it come true.” Thanks for sharing!
You are welcome, Rachel! I’m so glad you appreciated it.
Loved this for so many reasons. The following two lines especially choked me up:
“A dream-come-true is a thing both surprising and deeply familiar.
It is the future you were made for before you even knew enough about yourself to dream it.”
Still trying to figure that out. All I can see to take is the next step in front of me. Thanks for the beauty.
Oh, yes, Samantha. I think for a long time it might be all about “the next step.” But, I do believe that if we are faithful in those baby steps there will come a day when we get a glimpse of our days spread out to a far horizon. It’s a good view. And it’s worth waiting for.
“…both surprising and deeply familiar…”
Yes. I love that too.
Something I’ve found to be true in our transient military life is that the particular dream of home and community can come true over and over again. We move through a cycle of wondering what will be, to finding home in a place we never expected, to leaving it all behind and hoping for the next to be just as surprisingly perfect. But there is always hope as God in his loving grace gives us those “Yes. This.” moments over and over again. His plans for us are good and that feeling of familiarity comes when to me when I stop and say “Yes, this is what He intended for right now. This!” (And when I stop complaining about the weather in Florida long enough to be honest with myself, I can say it here. “Yes, even this!”)
Everything about this post was beautiful. I’m standing here at the kitchen counter crying. Yes. The longing, the stretching, the dying.
“It is the future you were made for before you even knew enough about yourself to dream it.”
And yes, we were 18 and 20 at our wedding. Totally inconvenient.
You are such a gift, friend.
Did you link it with holleygerth.com? She has a link-up with dreaming big God-dreams every Tuesday.
Oh, thank you, Summer!
We were 19 and just-turned 22. 🙂
I always go away for a little while and when I come back and read a post of yours, it’s always EXACTLY what I need to read. It’s always something that touches me so deeply. Something I wish I could write, only I don’t have the beautiful gift of words that you do! Thanks for sharing. I’m so happy you’re in a place where you are being given dreams. I hope I am in that place, too, someday…
I hope so, too, Heidi! And thank you for your sweet words.