What’s in a Dream?

Dreams are intensely personal. They are expressions of our true self. What do we passionately pursue? What gives us that far away, wistful look in our eyes? What causes us to shed tears or to argue or to take risks that to most seem oddly insane? Dreams are intensely personal.

Some sequester dreams in the shadowy places of their lives. Quiet. Unnoticed. Anonymous. Free of mockery and derision. The dreams of these people occupy their quiet moments and resemble hobbies more than life-altering pursuits. These dreams are the books that never quite get written, the dragster that never quite gets built, the guitar that collects dust in the corner.

Others realize that their dreams are bigger than they are. These realize that these dreams are risky ventures, full of blind corners, pitfalls, and dragons. Their quiet moments are nervous affairs spent vacillating between fear and the potential for huge dividends. These people talk a lot about their dreams with their friends and confidantes, but ultimately it remains an exciting possibility, always just over the horizon, the dream that I’m going to get to just as soon as . . .

Then there are those who are not merely dreamers, but visionaries. The dream for them begins in the twilight pre-dawn hours and at mid-day and in the watches of the night. At first these folks closely guard the dream as they birth it, nurture it, allow it to develop. These folks are taken by the transcendent value of the dream and see that the dream reaches far beyond themselves, beyond their personal benefit, beyond even their lifetime. They too recognize blind corners, pitfalls, and dragons. They feel the butterflies. They too talk endlessly about the dream with friends and confidantes. At this point, the dream transforms into something God-sized, powerful, and compelling . . .

The dream becomes a vision. The dream moves beyond friends, beyond personal acquaintances, beyond close community. The dream ceases to be the sole property of the dreamer, the nurturer, the talker, the motivator. It takes on a life of its own and becomes the property of the community, the network, the . . . generation?

Angela and I once had a dream. We dreamed of living cross-culturally, taking the Word to the far reaches, to the remote, the lost, the forgotten of the world. That dream grew beyond the two of us and birthed something far greater than we would ever have imagine. It became a vision that took us across the world and played itself out over a decade of love and hardship and challenge and hard work. We had to shelf that vision for a while and it was relegated to the role of dream for six years.

illuminated bible

Dream has once again become vision–a vision that I think has the potential to capture your imagination and change the course of your life, not just ours. This vision bears an impact that will span generations and impact the future of an entire culture. This vision bears an impact that will change how you think when you eat your breakfast, read your Bible, eat a chocolate bar, drink your coffee. The vision–I don’t think that I’m speaking too boldly–has the potential to impact how you relate to God himself.

Beginning Friday, November 22, we begin a 40 day period of fleshing out the vision, bringing it to life and inviting you to be changed by it, to set in motion an impact that will change a culture for generation upon generation.

Tomorrow I want to share a dream that is worth living and dying for . . . join me here for an exciting first step into the vision.

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