You Got To Have A Dream....

You Got to Have a Dream...

"A longing fulfilled is a tree of life" Proverbs 13:12

One of the most interesting things I've done recently is write a list of my dreams. I'm not talking about the dreams I have when I go to sleep at night (although that might be interesting as well!), but the longings and desires of my heart. I've never articulated my dreams before, let alone write them down, and I was quite surprised how many I came up with in the space of a few minutes. So, at this time of year, rather than offer the usual 'goals for 2018' fayre, I thought I'd share some of my dreams with you. They aren't time-restricted or just spiritual. Here's a selection;

  • Visit the a Great Barrier Reef. I  included this after watching that amazing series, "Blue Planet II", on TV. I spent a couple of hours at the London Aquarium the other day, which is a start I guess!
  • See an angel. Not a 'vision' of an angel, a real one! They are all around us, after all, and the Bible says God sends them to minister to us.
  • Go to a Six Nations Rugby match at Twickenham. As a sports fan, those matches have a uniquely intense atmosphere.
  • Work with other local churches to see young people in Havering reached for Jesus. We cannot do this on our own; we have to partner with others.
  • Write a book. The Diaries of a Pastor maybe...?
  • Worship Jesus with my whole family.
  • Be in a Wishbone Ash tribute band. Wishbone Ash were a popular prog-rock band from the early-mid 70s. A friend has already offered to play triangle - though I can't recall the triangle being a prominent instrument in early 70s prog-rock!
  • See the culture of Havering and every person within transformed by the love and power of Jesus. This is the vision of Havering Christian Fellowship, so unsurprisingly it is right up there as a dream of mine.

Here's a challenging thought; do we really believe God is interested in our dreams and desires? And even more challenging; is He only concerned with our 'spiritual' dreams? I do not believe in a secular-sacred divide. That is a man-made construct. God is interested in the whole person. Jesus came to heal us spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally and He is concerned about our spiritual, physical, mental and emotional wellbeing.

Dreaming tests our belief in the nature of God. Is God only interested in what He can get from us, in what we can do for Him? I do not think the will of God is so narrow and restrictive. A longing fulfilled is a tree of life, the Scripture says. In the Garden, Adam and Eve were free to explore and enjoy everything God had made for them. If that was the case, how much more are we free to explore the abundant life that we have in Christ?

Some people find it hard to dream. Maybe past disappointments, hardship or uncertainty about the future can make dreaming seem like a luxury only some can afford to indulge in. But can we afford NOT to dream? God is able to do immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine. So let's start imagining! Let's start asking! Write down your dreams - spiritual, community, church, financial, family, travel, leisure and so on - and give them over to Him. You'll be surprised just how interested He is in them!

Dream on in 2018!