Dreams and Plans



A year many of us longed for as 2020 dragged on and on and on. Now it’s here, and I suspect some of us are not all that thrilled with the way it’s started out. And it’s too late to reboot. We’re stuck with it.

But that doesn’t mean we’re stuck with our lives. Yes, things seem just as uncertain as they did last year or last month.

We have dreams, and we don’t have to give up or compromise on them. If we’ve been in relationship with God, he has dreams for us. They may be better than what we have in mind. In fact, they are better than anything we could think of.

The Bible tells us he gives us the desires of our hearts. Psalm 37:4 NIV: Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. There are times this verse means he gives us what we desire (as long as it agrees with his Word). Other times, he places in our hearts what he desires for us or through us. In these instances, he also gives us the ability and resources to fulfill them.

Questions to Ask and Pray Over

Take a moment to meditate on what your dream is right now. Ponder and pray over it. Ask God if it’s from him. Answer the following questions to determine if it’s from God’s heart, your heart, or last night’s anchovy pizza.

Does it bring joy to our heart? Is it something we get excited about? Can we imagine it fulfilled and foresee the benefits it will bring to people as well as the blessings it will bring to us?

Do we have the energy for it? Does it get our adrenaline flowing? Can we visualize ourselves putting in the time and physical and financial resources to achieve it? Do we have faith God will provide all we need to achieve it? If we don’t see God as our provider of everything, we are in deep trouble because we can’t do it on our own.

Do we have the time for it? Many of us have lots of desires we’d like to pursue, “if I could only find the time.” The reality is we never “find” the time. We make the time for what’s important to us. We make the time, even if we have to go after our schedules with a club. We carve time out of our day and dedicate these minutes and hours and days and weeks—and even years—to pursuing our goals.

Does the dream give direction to our life? Do we wake up every morning with purpose and goals because God has given us a desire that requires focus and intentionality? He will call us to do more than we ever imagined. And he will also give us the ability to do it as long as we do it for him and not for ourselves.

The Big Question

Here’s a big question: Do we need God to accomplish it? If we can do it with our own resources, it’s probably not from God. Is it so big, we can’t see ourselves fulfilling or accomplishing it? Is it so beneficial for others it has to be done? But we have no idea how or even where to begin. Then it’s probably from God. And, as the Bible says, if he gives us the vision, he will also give us the means to fulfill it. If our dream is from God, he will be our resource for making the time, for developing the talent or skill, for making the connections and relationships we need. Don’t try to figure out how he’s going to do it. We can’t. Our job is to trust and obey.

We can also ask what is my place, my purpose? This is a heart question we need to take to God. Ask him flat out: Why did you choose to create me? What do you want me to do in my time here? He will answer. Maybe not right away and maybe not directly as we expect or hope. He won’t flash a neon sign in the sky. He’ll slowly reveal his purpose through the circumstances in our lives and the options he presents to us. He respects our free will and will never force us in one direction. But he will urge and nudge us. And we’ll know if we’re in line with him through the peace we’ll have.

As we move forward into 2021, make some time to sit with God and talk about your goals and dreams and his. Tune into the Holy Spirit and listen for the answers.

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