“Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6 (NIV)
Detours and delays can make our dreams feel unfinished. Unfinished resembles the old and worn piece of furniture stuck in the corner of the room ignored by its audience.
I carried a dream in my heart. “Someday I would organize conferences, preaching and teaching God’s word to women.” Years later, this dream became reality. God used my networking ability to unite women from local churches and create outreach conferences. God was at work, I stood in awe thriving in my dream. It was a proud moment watching the momentum of unity build in my community.
After five years of running strong, detours entered the picture. I don’t know about you, but when I approach a bright, orange detour sign on the road, my blood pressure immediately rises, especially when I’m in a hurry (which is often). Unexpected shifts were taking place in my ministry; Churches dropping (disappointed by inward thinking) and attendance numbers dwindling. These detours not only caused delays, but they were rough and rocky.
I desperately held on to the dream like tug of war. The harder I gripped the rope, the more it slipped from my hands, forcing me to “let go.” Letting go was like unplugging life support for one of my loved ones. It was painful but offered great teachable moments. My dream partly died because I was relying on my own success for confidence, instead of relying on God to provide it. God often delays a dream, so our confidence becomes more rooted and grounded in Him.
Have you experienced a broken or delayed dream? Your husband escaping a marriage, leaving you empty handed with finances and kids. An ideal promotion, given to someone else. Multiple pregnancies, left only with miscarriages. The children you raised for the good life, choosing a different and difficult path. You were sure of your dream, but life served you a curveball causing a strikeout in your confidence.
Paul wrote this scripture as encouragement to remind us of the good work God started inside us (our dreams). God is the finisher of His work, never leaving it like the unfinished piece of furniture. Our broken and delayed dreams may leave us feeling deficient. But…
If you are like me, delayed dreams can rob and destroy our confidence. But we can’t afford to discount what may look shattered. Something beautiful is about to happen with the broken pieces. I’m not going to tell you it’s easy or a quick fix, but with God it’s possible. Just recently, I was reminded again of my crushed dream and I had to collect those shattered pieces and do the following:
• Glue them back to my beautiful mosaic~ remind myself God is about to do something new with the fractured pieces.
• Admit to God the damaged pieces, but don’t allow it to disturb His redeeming work.
• Don’t revisit “Why did this happen”, stay focused on “What new work is He completing?”
God repairs what’s been postponed and/or broken. He may be delaying it, so He becomes more part of it. As God does his great work of completing (redeeming) your dream, you can look forward to your confidence standing taller and growing stronger because He is leading the dream, and you are not.
Prayer: Lord you are the giver of our God-given dreams. Despite the delays and detours we may encounter, help us to be confident that you are faithful to complete a good work in us.
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