Knowing You, Meeting Me

Dream On!

NOTE: This started as a blog Friday morning about 7:15 AM. My screen froze and I wasn’t able to post it. Now that I remember, I’m doing so….but that should explain the discrepancy in time frame. lol

God woke me up this morning. Early. Normally, I wouldn’t mind, but for the fact that I have been sick and fully intended to sleep until at least 9:30. But when it became obvious that He had something for me to say and would not stop divinely poking at me (despite my literal utterances of “five more minutes….PLEASE!”) until I got up to write this blog, I figured do it and head back to my precious pillow.

That being said =)

Today we’re going to talk more about dreams – you know, those pesky little deep desires of your heart that seem too big to accomplish. I think sometimes as Christians, we don’t want to think about our dreams. Very often it appears that we are at the center of our dreams – and most of the time we are right. But consider some scripture for a moment:

Jeremiah 1:5 – Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart, I appointed you as a prophet among nations. 

and later…

Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

I realize I may have used these before, but, unless the sickness is really getting to me, the point I will be making is different this time. 

I’ve spent a lot of my life trying to ignore my dreams and do what was proper or expected of me. I’ve quieted the urges I have,  I’ve even tried to cast them into the pit believing them to be a distraction. I’d look for a prophetic word trying to make sure that everything I was running away from and everything I was urging myself towards was “the right thing”. But no such word ever came.

Then one day I asked a pastor friend of mine who I have looked up to since I was about 5 years old what he thought the reason for that might be. He told me this: “Monique, I love you and so I’m going to tell you the truth. Prophetic words are for people who genuinely have no idea what they’re supposed to do or where they’re supposed to go next. That’s not your problem. You’ve always known what it is God wants you to do. Now you just have to act on it. You never received a prophetic word, because you never needed one.” I walked away not knowing what to feel and it would be years before I knew what he was talking about.

My life scripture is Psalms 37:4 which says, “delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” But dreams? Really? And then this year I understood that verse in a whole new way. A wonderful friend of mine told me of a sermon she heard in which the pastor was talking about dreams. She told me that in this sermon, he spoke of the dreams that are nagging and overwhelming and how sometimes they are like whispers or prophecies from God into our hearts directing us and pointing us towards the future He has for us. 

That makes so much sense! Especially since I like to think of my life scripture as this: align yourself with the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. When you are aligned with God, His desires for you become your desires for your life. He wants to give you your dreams because He put them there in the first place.

So dream on! As Genesis 1:27 tells us, we are made in the very image of the Creator God….and there is NO bigger dreamer than He!

*can I go to bed now, God? thanks….zzzzzzzzzzz…….*

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Fear of the Monkey Bars

Yesterday, I took my four children to one of the many local parks in the area. We had a fantastic time and I greatly enjoyed watching them play. As is usually the case, I learned something about me and about God through an interaction I had with one of my children concerning the monkey bars. These particular monkey bars were pretty high, and my 8 year old son, Kameron, is  not the height of an 8 year old so this was especially scary for him. I let him hold on to the bars and I held onto his legs and told him to push himself forward (Melody, my dear dear friend, you already see where this is going, don’t you?)

He reached for the first one, success! The second and third he did with little problem. But by the fourth, his arms were getting tired and he started realizing how high up he was. “Don’t worry, Kami, I’ve got you! Mommy’s here and she’s not gonna let you fall.” Forward one more and then he stops. “All done!!!” (Kameron, has autism, and with that comes a pretty significant language delay…that will make this make a little more sense). “No, baby, I’ve got you. Keep going.” But Kameron doesn’t want to keep going. He is trapped in his fear. “Get down now!!” Even though he can see clearly what is in front of him – the other side of the monkey bars – his fear kept him from getting to the end.

Sometimes life can be a lot like getting stuck on monkey bars. God will often call on us to trust Him and in His promises to us. But trust is hard! And it’s not always the unknown that we fear, but what we see God doing right in front of us that paralyzes us and stops us from moving forward.

Romans 8:28 assures us that, “all things work together for good for those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” That is a promise that should allow us the ability to take a sigh of relief. But very often our lack of faith keeps us from taking the leap and trusting God fully. We make ourselves vulnerable to Him…but only a little and the things we truly desire we keep so close to the vest we dare not take them to the throne.

Fear is a very powerful force and it did not come from God (For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7) . But the grace we have from God is that when fear takes hold of our lives and prevents us from moving forward in His will, we can call on Him for help and by His grace and love He does just that.

“For  you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave to again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by Him we cry, ‘Abba, Father’.” Romans 8:15

The same way I had my son and wouldn’t let him fall, God holds us in His hand. When we get scared, we cry out to Him for strength and help and because He is our Father, that help is granted.

So to any of you who are dangling on that fourth or fifth bar and seeing what’s in front of you, go for it! This I write more for myself than anyone reading it. Trust that God has you – your dreams, your destiny, your future, your life – in His arms. Press forward and don’t let go until you’ve reached the end. Press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called YOU Heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14).

Dear God, 

I gave you my dreams as You asked and some of them are already coming true. As I thank You for that, please help me to remember that Your arms are around me and as long as I stay with You, Your hand will keep me from falling. Help me to move forward towards the end I see so clearly, and help me to get ready along the way. 

In Your name I pray,


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Dreams and Rich Mullins

Today is going to be a little different….again. I’m sure I’ll find a verse at some point during this blog to share, but mostly I will be quoting a song by one of my favorite Christian artists of all time, the late Rich Mullins.

“You who live in Heaven hear the prayers of those who live on Earth
Who are afraid of being left by those we love and who get hardened in the hurt
Do you remember when You lived down here where we all scrape
To find the faith to ask for daily bread?
Did You forget about us after You had flown away?
Well I memorized every word You said
Still I’m so scared I’m holding my breath
While You’re up there just playing hard to get.”

Days as of late have been a little bit of a rough for me. I don’t do vulnerability very well – with my friends family or God. I have made an art out of letting people think they’re closer to me than they are, know me better than they do, and see more for who I am when they couldn’t be further from the truth. To be honest I have loved it because it allowed me to control my role in the lives of the people around me….not the best way to cultivate relationshps but it worked for me…or so I thought.

And then a good friend of mine gave me this verse John 16:24 Until now you have not asked for anything in My name. Ask and you will recieve and your joy will be complete. Really? Huh…

I started to realize how many dreams I was hiding from God…or thought I was hiding from God. Dreams I held so tightly in my fists that they started to leave marks on my wounded heart. I don’t say that to be poetic – however it might sound – I say that because in many ways I grew up feeling very broken. My dreams seemed to be the purest pieces of me and I was not willing to share them with anyone. So much of who I am has been criticized or mocked as I grew up – my height, my weight, the fact that I talk “too much”…I couldn’t let anyone see the deepest desires of my soul just so they could destroy those too! So I kept them all to myself hoping that they would stay in my glass jars, bittersweet reminders of things I always wanted, but would never be. So for someone to tell me to pray for the things I really really REALLY want? “Still I’m so scared I’m holding my breath…” yeah…I don’t think so, God.

But, against everything my nature tells me, I started praying for three things, three very simple but very important things to my heart. I prayed without my normal hindered feelings of doubt and unbelief and I wholeheartedly trusted God to come through for me. As it turns out, these three things had a sort of time frame to them so I would know  within a certain amount of time if my prayers were to be answered or not – at least the way I wanted them to be.

“And I know You bore our sorrows, and I know You feel our pain
And I know it would not hurt any less even if it could be explained
And I know that I am only lashing out at the One who loves me most
And after I have figured this somehow, all I really need to know…..”

From that I suppose you can guess that I “didn’t get” what I prayed for when I wanted it.

“If You who live in Eternity hear the prayers of those of us who live in time
We can’t see what’s ahead and we can not break free of what we’ve left behind.”

This was so different for me. In this moment, I’ve been tempted to (and sometimes did) ask “why not, God? I did what You asked! Why couldn’t I at least have one? Just one? They weren’t selfish prayers..just small little things I wanted that would have in the end helped me help other people….now what?”

“I’m reeling from these voices that keep screaming in my ear
All these words of shame and doubt, blame and regret
I can’t see how You’re leading me unless  you’ve led me here
To where I’m lost enough to let myself be led”

So now what? Do I go back to who I was before, denying everything I know about the plans God has for me? Do I question everything I truly feel He’s been showing or saying to me lately just because the deadline came and I’m still here? No…I guess not. Why? Simple...I’m still here. I don’t know what God is doing or why I’m in a place that I don’t really know where I’m going. But I am going to offer up my dreams to the Artist who painted them on my soul, I’m not going to take them back because I’ve yet to see where they’ll be displayed. Who I am…who I am created to be is a work in progress with dreams and hopes that were whispered in my ear by the Creator as I was being created. In Jeremiah 1:5, God tells us, “Before I formed you in your mother’s womb I knew you, before  you were born I set you apart.” If my faith is growing as I say it is, it will not falter now because I didn’t get what I wanted. It stands firm knowing that my Father, my Abba, my Daddy can see the finish line even though I’m still running this race. He has my best interest at heart and my dreams – the dreams HE gave me will come true when the time is right.

“…and so You’ve been here all along, I guess. It’s just Your way and You are just playing hard to get…”

*thanks for the reminder, Rich*

Goodnight World….dream BIG!

Philippians 1:6 “Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus

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