"Love what you do and do what you love. Don't listen to anyone else who tells you not to do it. You do what you want, what you love. " - Ray Bradbury
At some point in life, most people experience what it means to be “in love with someone.” But before you get to the love part, you start out dating getting to know each other. When you are in the dating stage there are some things that usually happen. For instance, you tend to think about the object of your affections all the time. Every waking moment you rehash everything you talked about, how you met or how he looked when he picked you up for your date. Every detail about every encounter is remembered and analyzed over and over again.
Another thing that occurs when dating, is you spend a great deal of time getting to know each other, whether it’s in person or over the phone. Maybe you have experienced not being able to wait to see him again, even though you just finished your date two hours ago. Or it’s three in the morning and no one wants to be the first to hang up the phone despite the fact both of you have to be to work in a few short hours.
When you are dating someone you really like, you tend to talk a lot about him to anyone who will listen. You probably have some sort of goofy smile on your face as you recall the way he chews his food or smiles or looks at you.
Date nights are preceded by a frenzy of planning the perfect outfit and hairstyle, what you are going to do and where you are going to go. This is all in an attempt to make sure each date is fun, special, and one you will both remember.
Now, I know the above scenarios are usually the things that happen at the beginning of any new relationship. But what happens when you realize that the person you are dating is “the one”?
A shift takes place within you. When you know he is the one, you don’t doubt or question. It’s something that you experience in the depths of who you are. There is a deep knowing between the two of you and a new level of commitment develops. You begin to invest more time and energy into building a relationship that you want to last. You began to recognize that it’s not just about you anymore, but also about the other person. You become more vulnerable and open to sharing more of who you are with him. You do things to help strengthen and deepen the relationship and your connection to each other.
So what does this have to do with your God-inspired dream? Everything.
When you finally understand what your purpose is in life and how this dream God has given to you is connected to that purpose, a shift happens. Your dream becomes this thing that you cannot shake. You can try to ignore it, pretend it doesn’t exist, or minimize it, but it will not work. Just like when you know that you have found “the one”, it’s the same thing with your dreams. There comes a point where you have a deep knowing that this is what God has for you.
If you think about it, loving your dream is in many ways similar to loving another person. It can evoke similar feelings of excitement and fear. It will occupy your mind a significant part of the time. A dream will require you to make a deeper connection as you move forward in it. It will be something you want to share with others. A dream that is truly yours will be one that you will not want to let go. You will want it to grow and thrive and are willing to make necessary sacrifices for this to happen. And a God-inspired dream recognizes it’s not just about you, but the people who this dream is intended to serve.
I have four ways to love our dreams that parallel to finding “the one”.
· Commit To It. You must say “yes” to the dream God has given you. The commitment you make has to be unshakable because the road to becoming a dream maker is filled with lots of twists, turns, potholes, and detours. Just like in any relationship there will be ups and downs and things will get bumpy, but when the commitment is strong and real you will make it through. When you have that special person in your life, you are willing to experience the good and the bad with them and not bail at the first sign of trouble. This applies to our dreams too. We can’t give up and must always be willing to persevere through the difficult times.
· Think About It. Making God-inspired dreams a reality does not just happen on their own. The seed for the dream given to you by God must be nurtured in order to grow. Part of this growth process includes spending time thinking about what your dream means and creating a vision and plan for it. Everything begins in the mind. You know the saying, “the more we think about something, the more it grows.” Relationships are nurtured in our thoughts as well. Remember how just thinking about your special someone could bring a smile to your face? The same idea applies here. Feed your dream loving and positive thoughts. Think about all the reasons why you are pursuing your dream and not all the reasons that could stop you before you even get started. Let a smile and joy radiate from your face as you become excited about the possibilities.
· Share It. Have you ever had a friend who after she meets a great guy, he is the only thing she wants to talk about when you are together? And maybe you really don’t want to hear another story about him, but you listen anyway because you can see how happy she is? I don’t want you to share so much to the point of becoming annoying, but I do want you to let people (who you feel will be supportive and encouraging, no dream killers allowed ) know what God is up to. Let them see that goofy smile on your face as you talk about your God-inspired dream. Especially in the beginning stages of dream making it is crucial to have support; people who believe in you and what you are doing even if they don’t completely understand it.
· Act On It. Dream making requires action. Prayer, thinking, sharing, planning is all part of the process, but if you never take concrete action how will your dream ever become a reality? Building a relationship requires action too. In order for your relationship to grow, it must be supported by actions that say and demonstrate love and commitment. Our dreams require the same. Every action must reflect love and a willingness to do what is necessary in order to fulfill the dream. In moments of fear, we must always be willing to move in faith and act in ways that show care, determination, and love in spite of being afraid.
Let me add something here. When I talk about love and commitment, I am talking about the real deal. And if you haven’t experienced the real deal with another person, then try experiencing it with God. He is the ultimate partner. As you connect to your dreams you will connect to God on a whole new level. Imagine what would happen if we committed to Him the way we do another person? And then imagine what would happen if we committed to our dreams in that same way?
How are you showing love to your God-inspired dreams? Send me an email to let me know. If you like this article, please share it.