Do I Dare?

Have you ever carefully wrapped up a dream and tucked it so deeply into your heart that you can barely conceive of drawing it out and peeking at it? Have you ever become so comfortable with it tucked away in your heart that the world feels right with it carefully hidden away there? The kind of dream that you have held in your heart for so long that it has become part of you? A dream so secret you carry it unconsciously? I am talking about a dream so carefully swaddled that you have stopped thinking about it. A dream that when something happens to remind you of it, you are almost surprised it is still there. The kind of dream that when you are reminded of it’s existence, the thought of peeking at it scares you. Do you have a dream that you haven’t hoped for or spoken of in years?
I have a dream like this. About ten years ago I wrapped it up. Carefully. I had to hide it away because my heart couldn’t bear to hope any more. I felt that to cling to it was more harmful than helpful at the time. I knew that for now we were being called to walk a hard road and that learning how to do that was what our effort had to go to. At least for now. So I took that dream and carefully wrapped it up. Then I tucked it way down into the depths of my heart. To that safe place. To that place where I could hold it but not let go of it. Down in the secret place where I could keep it safe and yet forget it. It became part of me, yet I could pretend it was not there. 
A couple of weeks ago I was in a situation where I was reminded it was there. 
My first instinct was to tuck it back down where it had lain for a decade. Maybe if I did that quickly, I could forget it was there again.  I could push it away and go on as I had for ten years. I was comfortable with it hidden there in the depths of my heart. I wasn’t ready to look at it.

At the time I wrapped up the dream and tucked it away because the timing was wrong for it. Part of why I love having it tucked away is that there is no risk. When it is hidden away, my heart is safe. When it is hidden in the depths of my heart I am not vulnerable. As soon as I pull the dream out, my heart dares to hope. In hope there is risk. What if I that hope consumes me again? What if when the dream is not achieved quickly I feel disappointment. What if my hope is met with a path I don’t like? What if? There is so much on the line that “what if” is too scary to face. What if I am not strong enough to hope again?
It is too late. 
That situation tugged at the dream. It is uncovered now. It lays there, out in the open. It is stubbornly refusing to be tucked away. It will not let me wrap it up and store it away in the depths to be forgotten. It doesn’t matter if I feel vulnerable. It doesn’t matter if I am not strong enough to risk hope. It is out of my hands. I feel raw and exposed. I am uncomfortable. Everything feels different, off, out of place. I feel unsettled.
I am uncertain. I am scared.
How do I hold the dream loosely? How to I keep from anticipating an outcome? How do I hope without falling to despair? How do I stay afloat when the way doesn’t look like what I was expecting? How do I dream without demanding? How do I do this right?

I already know it may be messy. I don’t like messy. I know it might hurt. I don’t really care for that much either. Honestly, I liked it better when the dream was wrapped up, tidy and tucked away safely. I am not sure I am ready to step into this again. No one asked me. It all just happened. Here I stand. I am facing the unknown. 

But, I am not alone. 
The One who awakened the dream again is with me. I may not know what is coming, but I know Him! He is good. He is trustworthy. He is faithful. He is full of grace and mercy towards all and his loving kindness endures forever. He will handle my vulnerability with tenderness and care. He will show me how to hope again.  He will give me what I need. When my strength runs out, he will help me continue. And so, while I don’t know what will happen, I am secure because I know my Savior. And because I know my saviour, I will follow where he leads. Because I trust him,  I will dare to dream this dream again.

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