I know these are challenging times for everyone. I pray for anyone reading this — for health, provision, and for you to be filled with God’s peace that passes all understanding. I have some thoughts that I hope will build you up and lift your heart you during this time when many of us are feeling a little shook and might be taking a closer look at what is important to us. We may also be examining what we can do to navigate and help others through the changes that are happening.
In my last blog, I presented some bible verses that highlighted how God felt about children. I know that one of the reasons I was so motivated to talk about this topic was because of a dream that I had a few weeks earlier.
The days before I had the dream, I was in the middle of revamping this website for my business. I also mapped out a detailed schedule full of business and family responsibilities. I was excited but very busy and ended up overextending myself and getting sick. My brain felt fuzzy and it was hard to think at all. However, during the night, I had a couple of very vivid dreams that God used that caused me to immediately adjust my schedule to better support my overall health. There is something God showed me through one of the dreams that I think will also bring you encouragement about how He feels about you.
In the dream, I was alone inside of the grade school that I attended as a child. I was walking through the school hallways that included many left and right turns that always fascinated me. One of the hallways contained a doorway that was a side entrance to a gymnasium. In the dream, I was recalling how the gym had originally been a church in my earliest years at the school until a new church was built. When I was around eight or nine years old, I would sneak into the dimly lit, sacred atmosphere of the old sanctuary before walking home after school. I remember making sure that no one was watching me as I slightly opened the wooden front doors and slipped into the quietness. I was a strange kid. If you would like more descriptions and background for my odd behavior, I invite you to check out my second book, Brushstrokes of Heaven. 🙂
After I woke up from the dream, I found myself thanking God that He was with me when I was that unusually contemplative kid that spent a lot of years walking those school hallways deep in thought and heavy with feelings. Then He said some things to me that took me by surprise. He affirmed that He made me an intense thinker, and to need substantial times alone to reflect and create — and that it was evident even in my early school days and wanderings. He said He didn’t want me to neglect my times of solitude and pondering because He enjoyed how He made me. The words I sensed Him say were that He “would miss that.” Tears immediately started rolling down my face.
Even now when I think of the Lord saying He “would miss that”, I feel powerful emotion. I never really thought that He would esteem the pensive part of me that loved to walk alone observing and philosophizing as a child, especially since I was told at that time by a few people that I was too serious and melancholy. Telling me He would miss that part of me has had a meaningful impact on me, especially since it is the lingering aspect of my personality that fuels my writing and helps me feel deeply connected to Him. I think He knew that I needed to hear this affirmation from Him just as I was beginning to fill my life with a lot more extrovert-type activity than was healthy for how he designed me. I began to add a little more time alone to my schedule, and it turns out that I ended up being ordered by The Governor to do that several weeks after having the dream anyway, well, except for home-schooling!
The principle God reminded me of through my dream applies to whatever your personality is.
What were you like as a child? What was distinctive about you? Were you the class clown, always wanting to make people laugh? Were you always wanting to take the lead during games at the playground? Did you love making lots of friends and were often the life of the party? Were you imaginative and creative?
If you are good at lightening up a situation, you may have learned to be more serious sometimes, but God delights in how funny you are, and He doesn’t want you to lose that wonderful ability to make others laugh. If you love to lead, you may have to learn to serve as well, but God enjoys how you speak out and spearhead productive endeavors that He gives you a vision for. If you are a thriving social butterfly, you may have had to develop the ability to be more focused on tasks or learn to be alone and quiet, but God treasures the generously social part of you that brings people together and creates fun. If you are like me, a reflective loner who had to learn how to take time to nurture friendships and lighten up, He cherishes how you dive deep in thought.
Whether we are trailblazers, humorists, or scholars God may want to refine or balance out our strengths but He does not want us to stifle them. God highly values your individual design, possibly more than you realize. He is the artist that created you.
My dream reminded me how helpful it can be to look back at our childhood and see what we were like, before we may have internalized a bunch of false standards and judgments about our personalities. Misbeliefs and unnecessary resolutions can lie beneath the surface and make us ready to sacrifice parts of us that God never intended us to lose.
Please don’t reject your uniqueness, because like He told me, He would miss enjoying every part of how He made you. He loves the way He created you. He loves you so much.
In and beyond this health crisis, I pray that you will see how God wants you to bless the world with His gifts and His love. And I believe as we lean our ears to His heart, we are all going to come out on the other side of this challenge with passion and fire! God bless you and your family! May you be filled with His perfect love that casts out all fear.
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