As I write down my deepest desires, review my hopes and dreams, I find this battle…
So much of who I am is tied to how others see me and receive me. I want to be accepted, and perhaps even celebrated. I want to know that what I offer is valued by somebody…OK, perhaps lots of somebodies.
Do you feel it also?
Unfortunately, being valued by others is how we all learn to value ourselves. It compels us, while at the same it sets us up to be offended. As much as affirmation can bring us great joy, it can make us very angry when we’re rejected. It connects us to the wrong people. It propels us down roads that we would otherwise not take. At its core, the affirmation of others can truly be the root of much evil. And worse yet, when my dreams are tied to another’s acceptance, what originally appears to be selfless, can actually become self-serving.
The only answer to such a dilemma is found in the deeper motivations behind the gospel—the cross of Christ. More than communicating our need to be cleansed of evil; God declares in the cross, “I love you. I forgive you. I believe for you.” Such powerful words! More than we usually realize. Think about it…before you said a Word, before you uttered your first prayer, the Father reached out to you. Nothing required, nothing expected, God simply drew near to you, first! (Romans 5:10; 1 John 4:19)
This is where dreaming must begin—not at the feet of others, but at the foot of the cross. To be bathed in perfect love and perfect acceptance. Only in this place can that which has been deposited in us find its wings. Only when we are at perfect peace with ourselves, can our dreams flourish unhindered in their original purity and beauty.
After 53 years of living, I’m beginning to understand—dreams are not pursued, but released. Everything you need to live life to the fullest is already in you, not in anyone else’s hands. Sadly, no one ever taught me how to simply enjoy the divine gift of life deposited in me by God…to dream without the worry of others judgment. As I shared yesterday, that which is in us will have difficulty manifesting as long as it is tied to other’s opinions.
Today, I believe God’s call is simply to find a deeper joy in His love for us. Before anything can be released from within, it must be disentangled from our intense need to be somebody else’s meaning. Only God’s love in us can heal us. Only by our trust that God’s love is enough will our gifts and dreams find freedom to grow.
Would you dare to believe that in Christ, we are ALREADY who we need to be? That the deepest desires of your soul (some of which I hope you wrote down yesterday) don’t have to be calculated into a success plan. You can enjoy them right now…because they are already good enough in the hands of the one who gave them to you. He already promises to multiply them in His hands as you trust Him into the days ahead.
Let these Words from scripture fill you, “For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.” (2 Corinthians 1:20, ESV) In Christ, you don’t have to wait for any approval—you are already approved.
Everything you need for joy and abundant life is within you!
You might want to take some time, today, sit at the foot of the cross, and let Jesus wash away all other agendas plaguing your heart.