You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.
- C.S. Lewis
When last did you dream an extraordinary and outrageous dream? A dream that challenged the existing boundaries of your life and the mental perceptions that people carry of you? What did you then do? Did you package the dream into the web-filled aspirations cupboard or maybe dared to share it with someone? Did you work further on this dream or once again let another adventure lie dormant? What did you choose to do?
As a psychologist I hear about many dreams in my consulting rooms. It is now easy to surmise who will take action and who who will delay. I recall a personal leadership training session that I facilitated with a group of pharmaceutical sales representatives. One of the team members, an attractive dark haired woman, was unusually silent and tearful for most of the session. She later shared that at the age of 25 she had achieved most of her career and financial goals but but not an incredible life adventure. She mentioned that if she died today she had truly not lived. I told her that she was the only one that could make these vital choices in her life and the team agreed. A week later I received an email from her to say that she was flying to London to begin her adventure and to dream again. I have no doubt that one day when she is 80 years old she would cherish this life changing and remarkable decision.
The story of Joseph is an insightful account of how dreams can shape our personal destinies. It is interesting to note that he was born to a woman who was barren and infertile. He was born from a place in which there was no hope. I think that the underlying principle here is that God always produces his most precious dreamers from a place of nothingness. He almost waits patiently for a person or situation to be without hope and out of these circumstances, He breathes life and the fulfillment of miraculous plans. In essence, He takes the impossible and makes it possible.
The story of Joseph also teaches us that there are three stages with regard to the successful realization of a dream. There is firstly the ‘birth’ of a dream in which one gets a very clear view of what one is called to do or bring into this world. The second stage, ironically, is the ‘death or disappearance’ of the vision in which it goes through a phase when it seems almost impossible to achieve the dream. During this time one even questions as to whether the original dream was accurate. The third stage is the rebirth of the dream in which there is new energy and reliance on God to bring all aspects into being.
Joseph endured much adversity during the realization of his dream. He managed to remain focused and the adversity had the effect of producing the greatest resolve in him. He did not trade in his calling but chose to use the various stumbling blocks as stepping stones. We need to be encouraged by this particular posture in the spirit and use the times in the ‘valley’ as the place to prepare for the ‘mountain’. Joseph was God’s best kept secret weapon. He was also willing to dream.
- Is there an area of your life that appears barren and empty?
- Has adversity caused you to trade in your calling?
- Are you God’s best kept secret weapon?
- Are you willing to Dream, again?