Sometimes I experience the biggest relevations when I’m yelling at God.
“But this was our dream!” I shouted.
“Sometimes dreams need to die,” He whispered.
And then I caught myself. Our dream. I was hanging on to something that was meant for a season. Something He gave us to spur us on.
But now it's different.
I have not grieved the loss of the dream. Of the plans that we made and what can never be again. At least not like it was.
As I was calming down, I recalled the article “On The Death of Dreams” by Jenny Schroedel. I read this piece several years ago, when I realized that maybe my ten-year-long dream of being a writer was a mirage. Within days of taking an editing job, my expectations no longer merged with the difficult reality I was living day after day.
I wondered if I had heard God wrong. Or maybe I took a bad turn at some point along the way. Had I been selfish in wanting this dream of being a writer and editor? I wouldn’t have come to this job if I had known it would be this hard and this disappointing. I would have chosen a different major in college, I thought. And on and on.
“Aren’t I bigger than the dream?” He asked as I began down that line of questioning for this latest disappointment. “Aren’t I enough? Isn’t it big enough that I see you and I know every step of the path your family has walked these last few years, through seminary and the loss of two children? Aren’t I sufficient to carry you through the next best thing?”
Because that’s what we’ve got now. The next best thing. And while the dream seemed radical, maybe the most radical thing to do now is live into the pain of losing the way it was, so we can pick ourselves up and move on with what God has for us now. In the present.
The dream was there for a purpose. For a time. Through it, God led us to a place we would never have dared to go on our own. Along the way, He showed us who we are.
We are those people now, with or without the dream. He is our God. Even when it isn’t like we think it should be.