Great movies transport us to another place. We get to see the world from a different perspective, maybe see parts of the world we have never seen before or worlds that are new creations. We get to go on adventures of emotions, experiences, places, different eras, all for the price of the ticket. I don’t know about you, but sometimes the adventure is so great, when the movie is over, I’m a little bummed. My life doesn’t seem as exciting or vivid in comparison.
Now, we probably all know that comparison is a slippery slope to disappointment because we never really see the full picture. We sort of choose to compare the lame parts of our life with the best parts of other people’s lives (ie. Facebook – be careful!!). Let’s take the example of the romanticized stories of Jane Austen. I LOVE the beautiful gowns and the stories of love pursued in the constraints of formal society. Just about the time I think, “I was born in the wrong era.” I remember a few other things about that era – Like where they had to go to the bathroom and what they did with their bathroom waste. (Yuck!!! If you don’t know, look it up.) No running water, coaches pulled slowly by horses over unpaved roads with no suspension, common death in childbirth, diseases not yet cured… There were plenty of ugly things in that era, but in the movie we get to focus on mostly the beautiful parts.
We have a choice in what we focus on in our own lives as well. Life is full of incredible experiences, both joyful and sorrowful. We can choose to remain attached to the disappointments and heart breaks, or we can choose to look at life as a great adventure. In all great adventures, there are huge obstacles to overcome on the journey to the prize. If there weren’t any obstacles, it wouldn’t be called an adventure!
In the past few years, my heart has been awakening to the truth that my life is an adventure! It is an incredible adventure! Due to my love for God, I believe He is taking me on this adventure. Together we get to journey together and I get to continuously choose if I’m going to stay on the adventure moving forward, or get sucked into the quicksand of disappointment and perish. By perish, I mean a slow death of a mundane life where all of the dreams I’ve dreamed slowly die and my heart shrivels up, cynical and bitter.
In saying yes to this adventure, my life keeps getting more and more exciting! The dreams I’ve had since I was a little girl are coming to fruition. The adventure comes one step at a time, but it keeps coming. What is your dream? My friend, Dennis Lamar, asked the question to a group of us this way, “Do you have a dream you once believed in, but because you didn’t see it happening, you have dismissed it? You’ve told yourself you must have been mistaken and it wasn’t really your dream.” When I heard this question, my heart stopped and tears welled up in my eyes. I felt like I had so many dreams like this! So, many disappointments of dreams I’d pursued without seeing them come to fruition. I’d come to a place where it was easier to dismiss the dream AND the disappointment, than to continue believing in the dream and dealing with the disappointment.
I’m here to tell you, this is no way to live! Living a life without dreams is like walking around as merely a shell of who you are really meant to be. Inside, you’ve emptied out all the valuable, beautiful parts you were created to have and enjoy!! The good news is you have a choice!! After Dennis asked that question, I made a lot of changes. When I prayed about my dreams, I asked,
“God which one is the one I am supposed to pursue. Is it acting, singing, speaking, writing?”
He said, “Yes!”
I said, “No, God, which one – I gave you choices – which one?”
He said, “All of them!”
“Whoa!! How would that be possible to pursue all of them? I’m married. I have kids. How can I do all of them?”
He said, “You can’t. But we can! Together we can do all of these things!”
That idea rocked my world! It was clear that I couldn’t do it on my own. It was too much! What I have seen over the past year is that God has been faithful to his word. I am pursuing all of them and I am seeing amazing results. In the process, I am living a real life adventure and loving it! I am more fulfilled now that I have ever been. I have more energy than I’ve ever had. I am able to be a better wife and mother than ever because I have an overwhelming sense of joy from which to live.
Do you have dreams you’ve dismissed due to disappointment? Don’t do it! Bring them back out, dust them off and ask God which ones to pursue. Ask him how to pursue them – He is faithful to give wisdom when we ask. The other vital aspect of pursuing your dreams is to surround yourself with people who are also pursuing their dreams. People who want to see you succeed and are willing to support you in your journey. Live big! Live the adventure!! It is worth it! It is what you are created to do!!