God-Shaped Dreams

Ever wonder why God created certain things?  
Like mosquitos...cockroaches...hiccups...

And how about dreams?  What is their purpose?  
In the Bible, there are 21 narratives which involve someone's dreams (and many, many more allusions and references to dreams and visions).  And in those stories of God interacting with people through dreams, people's dreams are made to change -- or even break -- so that God's BIGGER dream can come through.  

When the apostles gathered on Pentecost, God's bigger dream for the world broke through in a way that was so powerful the world has never been the same since.  You can read about it in Acts 2, especially Acts 2:14-21.  

Peter tells the people that in the "last days" God would pour our God's own Holy Spirit into all people -- men, women, young people -- so they would begin to dream God's own dreams.  Those "last days" do not mean here what many have come to associate that phrase with (the end-times). Rather, the last days refers to the fulfillment of God's will in such a way that would end one era and begin another (see the many references to the last days in the OT prophets).  So the question is: when are those last days?  

The answer: we are living in them now.

This has profound implications for how we think about our "dreams."  How do we tend to dream?  individualistically, defined by consumption, and even competitively.  (If you disagree, ask any 10-year-old to define a successful and happy life.  Most will talk about job, money, security, and creature comforts with themselves at the center of their own story.  Why wouldn't they -- it's natural.  But it's not what God's dreams look like.)

If God were to offer you two plans for your dreams, which would you be more inclined to follow?

Plan A) God promises to fulfill your most cherished dreams -- healthy, happy family, financial security, comfortable lifestyle, etc.  But that's it.  Nothing bigger.  Nothing more profound.  Nothing outside of your own imagination.

Plan B) God promises to fulfill his own dreams through your life -- healing for the nations, blessing for your community, unity where there is now division, healing of sickness, and salvation from sin and death.  But the catch is, your personal dreams may have to change -- or even be broken -- to make room for God's dreams to come true.  

Which plan would you take? 

- When you were a young child, what did you want to "be when you grew up?"  How did that work out for you?
- If you had one wish (and couldn't wish for more wishes, wink) what would it be?  Why?
- What dream of yours are you really hoping God will NOT disappoint?
- What vision of God's, as revealed in the Bible, would you be willing to make personal sacrifices for?

Many blessings as you dream bigger this week! 

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