Yesterday I was talking about not apologizing for God’s will. A friend commented on the post, saying, “…although there are trying circumstances weighing on me, the good far outweighs the bad. I can speak like the Israelites who said in Psalm 126:1, ‘When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream.'”
I’m asking myself if I am one of “those who dream.”
I think part of what I’ve been walking through recently is the disappointment of some of my dreams not coming true. Here’s an example…
When I was younger (umm, much younger) I dreamed that Benny and I would serve at the same church for forever and ever. We started a church at age 25 and then spent two decades growing and serving and sinning and making memories together. Many of the people who helped get the church off the ground persevered through the hard work, challenges and leadership changes — and are still there three decades later. In those early years we talked about being buried in the woods behind the building we all sacrificed to see happen…and mused about replacing the little ones we held in our arms during worship with our future grandchildren someday.
Two churches and lots of gray hairs later, I now hold my grandchildren hundreds of miles away from that place. Sometimes I still battle sadness over forever and ever not happening there. With them. I see pictures of their grown-up children on facebook and remember holding them in my lap, then wonder, “Do those kids even know who I am?”
Then I think about the people I wouldn’t otherwise know. The tears and prayers and fellowship and laugh-till-I-cried moments that wouldn’t have happened with friends I wouldn’t have gained. The trials and suffering that awaited me here in Florida that I needed to get to so I could experience God’s help in delightful, sanctifying ways.
Broken dreams are hard to handle. Until I think of Eden. I think about how God’s perfect and beautiful plan for His image-bearers was broken by sin. Yet even before the garden was created, God devised a plan. From the brokenness came a glorious plan of redemption that put God’s wisdom and love on display when our sinless Savior paid the ultimate price.
When I was dreaming about forever and ever, God knew my dreams wouldn’t be fulfilled my way. But how can I not praise Him for the experiences and people that wouldn’t have otherwise happened if there was really a place for me to be buried out in those woods?
It’s like seeing a lovely mirror crashed and broken on the floor. Now, rather than one piece of reflective beauty, there are many. My broken dream has resulted in numerous unsolicited yet precious gifts — including a brand new church to which God knew my broken dream would lead.
My friend reminded me of dreaming. I hope her reminder blesses you today.