One of my favorite shows on Netflix is Chef’s Table. It is not a cooking show; rather, it takes a deep dive into the lives of some of the top chefs in the world. The show explores their craft, their creative spirit, and their philosophy of life. In season one, they profiled a chef by the name of Dan Barber. What he does in the world of “Farm to Table” restaurants is quite amazing. There was something he said during this episode that has stayed with me.
“If you are thinking about an idea you can solve in your lifetime, you are thinking too small.”
Moving forward, I replaced the word thinking with dreaming. The concept is still true, and it gave me a lot to think about.
Here’s the Deal
The second we enter into a relationship with Jesus, we have been invited to join the larger narrative of God’s story. We are invited to live a life larger than our imagination can take us and to dream big dreams.
- We have not been saved to sit idly by as we wait for His return or our “glorious reward.”
- Jesus did not defeat sin and death for us to sit in a room and sing songs.
Jesus came to give us life, but not just any life…He came to give us an abundant, full, active, and engaging life.
So why do we trade God-sized dreams for a small existence?
It’s a Bad Trade
There are obstacles and risks we have let loom larger than the all-knowing and all-powerful God. It sounds silly to say it out loud, but if we are living less than what we were created for, it is true.
Obstacles and Risks
(NOTE: These are my obstacles & risks. Upon reflection, your list may look very different)
- JUST GETTING BY: When I was in school, I would often calculate what I needed to do to get by…figuring out the lowest grade I could make on a test and still make a B. Sadly, this is one of my default modes. When I find myself asking what is the least amount I have to do to show that I care, I have to quickly take a step back, confess, and ask Jesus to help me overcome my apathy.
- PERSONAL LIMITATIONS: As most of you know, I have MS. If I’m being honest, I made it one of my obstacles to dream big by allowing it to remove me from opportunities I believe God was placing me. Where MS has physically limited me, it has not limited my capacity to think, to listen, to speak, to learn, and to love.
- PLAYING IT SAFE: I have a whole story about jumping off a cliff. The short version is, I wanted to play it safe and stand on the edge so I could see the water and where I was going. However, the only way to clear the bank and safely land was to get a running start and jump without seeing everything.
When God invites us into His story and gives us a big dream, we cannot see all the details of His plan. He moves us away from the edge, says “GO,” and we have to run and jump off the cliff.
Stepping into God-Sized Dreams
PRAYER IS ESSENTIAL Jesus told His disciples “Put God’s kingdom first. Do what He wants you to do.” (Matthew 6:33)
The first step of trading your dreams for God-sized dreams is to pray for God’s heart. Stay connected to Him. Put your trust in Him. Delight in the things He delights in.
KNOW YOUR PURPOSE It is simple. We are to love God and love others. In fact, if your dream is not rooted in this purpose, you are going after the wrong dream. Be love to someone and in everything you do, make His name famous.
MAKE MOVES TODAY Ask yourself what is one thing you can do today that will bring you closer to your God-sized dream and then do that thing. “So if you know of an opportunity to do the right thing today, yet you refrain from doing it, you’re guilty of sin.” (James 4:17)
PRAY! I’m not repeating myself. It is just that important.
We can easily get knocked off course for an easier dream (read the book of Judges). Free-lance writer and author, Robert Bault, said
We are kept from our goal (dream), not from obstacles, but by a clear path to a lesser goal (dream).
We have to stay connected to God….especially when it get’s dfficult, we must continually seek His heart, His leading, and His direction.