There are few things that can motivate you as much as hope, love, faith and the eagerness of a dream.
I should’ve written this post a couple of months ago when dreams were a visibly hot topic in my life. But I skipped the opportunity. Actually, I procrastinated and I dreaded the topic. It didn’t seem right to dread your dreams so I chose not to write about it.
Five months ago, we took a giant leap of momentary insanity and decided to move to New Zealand – where the land overflows with lamb chops and Narnians. I accepted a position doing the job I love at an organisation I really respect. It’s the kind of situation I would’ve dreamed had I know it was actually possible.
But I was in knots with anxiety and dread. I was leaving all the dreams I knew.
I once sat in the back of a lecture room in a class called “social justice and the ministry of Christ” (my Bible college days may make for a worthy writing topic in the future). It was during that class I created this blog – seemed like a good idea, indirectly related to social justice or the ministry of Christ, but good God, when it’s easier to set up than automatic payments to the cable company, I’m going to do it). That class left a giant mark on my future. It inspired me to dream of using my life and whatever I have to offer to make some sort of small dent of difference in the world (and if all else fails, on the internet).
Two years later I sat in the back of another lecture room scheming for how quickly I could be done with this bloody degree, losing all those precious “ministry” credits I’d gained at college one. In my crafty plan to graduate early I saw how I could kill double the credits in one go: an internship. That internship turned into more than anything I could’ve ever dreamed of. I gained a (social media) soul mate and sister, invaluable experience that would shape the start of my career, and the realisation that whatever I do I can do with confidence that I’m in the right place at the right time.
That year I graduated two quarters early, my internship turned into a full time job (every intern’s dream), and I married my best friend. Such lovely dreams, and I was living them.
Once, on our couch in Puyallup, I said to Colin, World Vision should really have a blog. And I kept the rest of that thought a secret for the next half a year. But I dreamt of the day I would come into the World Vision office to sit down to a blank post page and a blinking cursor. I can’t describe why I dreamt that up, only that I knew story was the song of passion and a blog the modern songbook.
I suppose I never intended my workplace to play such a dominating role in my dreams. But it did, it has. Together, Richenda and I saw social media became a gateway of communication between organisation and supporter, believer and skeptic, cause and action. With the incredible support of colleagues I’ll owe a lifetime of gratitude, I managed the World Vision Blog for its first year of life where it grew and matured and was accepted inside and out. We blogged our way through new challenging and exciting experiences from topic to campaign to Bolivia. I was blessed with dream team after dream team who shared their talents and time.
When I accepted my current position with World Vision New Zealand I knew I had to leave all these dreams behind. Everything built, everything created, everything dreamt was about to become a memory in the distance (like literally in the distance).
I dreaded it, to be honest. My heart wasn’t aching because I was leaving my house and $10 Thai lunch specials. I ached with anxiety because I was leaving my dreams.
When I was in high school, I bet my college career that I’d spend at least two years studying abroad in some fascinatingly foreign land of accents and 1960s architecture. But at the end of my freshman year I met the man I’d marry. And my dream to live abroad ended when my dream to never leave him began.
Now I’m living in beautiful New Zealand, living in a melting pot of accents, with the man I love beside me; and with a job and a passion that has given me opportunity and experience beyond my preconceived world. It’s an old dream that must’ve wanted to time to refine itself because it’s better than the old me could’ve ever dreamed up.
Dreams are enthralling, aren’t they? They both shape our future while creating our present. Like they’ve studied us and know our destiny’s next move.
And in this move of all moves, from my rainy corner in the states to a windy corner down under, I’ve learned much about dreams and the hope that realises them. I’ve learned to write my hopes in stone and my dreams in sand.
Because my hopes have never changed. I’ve always hoped to love what I do, love who I’m with and love where I am.
But my dreams… those have been found to live and live and find ways of living on without me… and sometimes to reappear washed up better than new.
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The writing of this post started just as dreams do — in a small, barely lit room in the back of my heart. Through prayers and tweets and Skype chats, this post wrote itself with the encouragement, support, and love of other dreamers. Richenda and I are hosting our first-ever link-up on this topic because we know dreams change, dreams teach us, and dreams come true. Please take the time to read her beautiful post Dream Catcher.
And here’s to being a part of each others dreams, too: