When you are sick for long periods of time, be it months, or years, often dreams either die, or seem like they have to die. Maybe you miss out on things you really want, or things that everyone else is doing. Maybe it’s learning to drive, or even as simple as going to a birthday party. Or maybe it’s bigger things like that, like your dream job, or going to college. These things just can’t happen sometimes when you are sick with a long-term illness.
What if you never get better? Do you have to really give up on these dreams of yours? Are they really completely lost to you? It sure feels like it, right? And… sometimes they are. In those cases, I think of this quote:
“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” -C.S. Lewis
I know that this doesn’t sound like much comfort now, but it’s true. God says to delight in Him and He will give us the desires of our heart, and that as our Father, He certainly knows how to give good gifts to us. He loves to bless us, and He loves to make us happy. But first we may have to learn joy. And He knows what makes us happy better than we do. 🙂
However, the story doesn’t always end there. God can resurrect dreams even when they seem to have died, and even after we’ve attempted to bury them. Just like God resurrected Lazarus for His glory, He can resurrect our dreams if He chooses- they just have to die first. Mary and Martha recognized this when even though they were devastated at their brother’s death, they still trusted that Jesus had everything under control. I’m sure they wished desperately that Lazarus hadn’t died- desperately! But God resurrected him. As soon as they surrendered Lazarus to God, God gave their brother back to them.
I know this is hard to hear now, and it doesn’t necessarily make things easier. I know. But don’t let go of this truth, don’t let go of hope. Yes, surrender it to God, but don’t bury it so deep that you’re not willing to let the dream be resurrected by God if He chooses to. 🙂 I dream of being a wife and a mother someday. I dream of being a writer and an author. I dream of being a missionary. But how can I be a wife and a helper when I need so much help myself? How can I parent children someday if I can’t even manage myself? How can I be a writer if I can’t even answer my mom’s simple question? How can I be a missionary if I can’t leave the house? For so many very big reasons, it feels like those can’t happen in the ways that I dream of. It’s hard because these are good dreams, they feel like God-given dreams even! But guys, God knows what He is doing. He does. He even has the power to resurrect those dreams even if we never get better!
So I choose to surrender my dreams to Him, to let them die if they have to. But I will also choose to still hope and pray that God may resurrect them if it is in His will. I choose to trust that He knows what is best for me. I choose to ask God to help me to let go of my grasp on these dreams, and choose to leave it all in His hands. It isn’t easy, and I know this. But my dreams are not mine to fulfill. I choose to pray for God’s dreams.
(This post was inspired by the book When God Doesn’t Fix It, by Laura Story, specifically chapter 16. If you haven’t read it…. Just do it. It’s an amazing book, that I highly suggest!)