In January the United States celebrated Martin Luther King Jr., a Reverand famous for Civil Rights activism during the 50s and 60s. Reverend King’s “I have a dream…” speech is one that most of us can recall. This iconic speech took place during the March on Washington and is considered to be one of the most globally known calls to action in history. What made this speech so powerful? King’s speech centered around his own vision of the future–his own dreams for his family and his country.
What made Martin Luther King Jr. so successful in his cause was the fact that he had a vision. He saw it and he lived it. He proclaimed it. He cultivated it in his own family, his own neighborhood and communities. The truth is the only way to make anything happen–for yourself or anyone else–is to have a vision, a dream. Do you have a dream?
It’s in scripture where we find the best evidence of a life beyond what we could imagine for ourselves. Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
This scripture says that even when I don’t have a plan for myself, God has a plan. He knows the plan. It’s His plan itself that offers me hope and a future. His plans give my plans winds enough to fly or set sail.
What to Do With Big Dreams
I have big dreams–dreams for myself, my family, my church, my community. With so much in mind, it can be difficult to focus. With big dreams, especially, it can be difficult to keep our feet on the ground–firmly rooted in reality and possibility. What do you do when your big dreams come with too many moving parts? Too much to accomplish, focus on, and achieve? What do you do when your dreams are within your grasp but pulled away when you can barely touch them? We might feel as though God doesn’t want us to get that big thing.
When you have big dreams or even small ones, it’s important to reach for the right things, and in the right order.
Matthew 6:33 says, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” This scripture is referring specifically to our needs. “All these things” refers to what we need to eat, drink, or wear. It is a verse to tell believers that we need not worry about “all these things” because when we seek God first, we’ll get these things anyway. The verse is speaking of necessities. When we seek God first, we will have all our needs provided for. It can only be assumed that we need to also seek God first in order to have everything beyond our wildest dreams–or just moderately conservative dreams. Seeking anything other than the kingdom of God may end with us disillusioned and broken.
Pursuing Your Dreams
Whether your dreams are for social reform, the heights of your career field or something else entirely, the pursuit of them can be consuming. It’s important to stay firmly rooted in Christ to avoid needless heartache throughout your lifetime. I’m reminded of a little song I learned as a girl. It gets its lyrics from Micah 6:8:
He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the Lord require of you
But to do justly,
To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God?
What would happen if you took the dreams you hold dear for your life and put them in the hands of a Creator? It is not that God does not want our dreams to come true. I’m sure He does! But our fairy tale ending is not promised. Our dreams are not guaranteed, and when we seek God first, when we do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God, the broken dreams don’t hurt so much.
I grew up in a generation told at every turn by parents, teachers, mentors, and media celebrities that we could do anything we wanted, be anything we wanted, have anything we wanted. Now as a 33-year-old woman, I know that dreams are fragile things and the world’s wanting us to have them is just as frail.
Is your dream a kingdom on earth? One that will fade away after your passing or turn to dust and rubble in the end? Or do you dream of a kingdom in Heaven with your Heavenly Father?
I read over Reverend King’s speech recently and I couldn’t help thinking of heaven. He had a heavenly dream. He saw mere glimpses of this on earth. Modern generations see mere glimpses of our own dreams, but there is something bigger and better in store. This world is filled with counterfeits and dull, faded beauty, and I want my dreams to be as lofty as the shining streets of haven. Do you?