The other day we sat at our dinner table, and my son told us about his dreams about becoming a farmer when he has grown up. I asked my 4-year-old daughter what she wanted to become when she becomes an adult. Her answer came as a surprise to me, but before I tell you what she answered, I will tell you what I dreamed about in my childhood and youth.
Too many dreams
When I was a child and in my youth, I dreamed about being good at something, to have success and to be meaningful to other people. I’ve dreamed about becoming a singer, a dancer, an actress, an artist, a journalist, an author, teacher or a pastor. When theology didn’t work for me, I was educated a kindergarten teacher and deacon, which I later found out was not my dream job. I got the education, but there was no job for me. I dreamed about having a career, but it began to look like a fantasy or that I should wait for I don’t know how long.
When I was a child, I never thought about starting my own family, but some time after I was married and I was about 24 I looked at all my cousins and my siblings who all had children, and I thought “ok, maybe I should also have some children.”
21st of August 2007 was the day a new world was born. The birth of my son was a portal to a reality I only knew as a spectator. My son was not the only one who was born that day. His birth lead to a birth of a grown-up woman and a mother. To be a mother and stand with a newborn baby in my arms was a miracle and for six months, my life was breastfeeding, trying to get a baby to sleep and changing diapers, and always being tired.
When my son had taught me to be a mother, it was time to give him a sister or brother. This time I felt “Yes, we can do this. Let’s have another child.” The pregnancy and birth of his sister was a piece of cake, but when she was 3 weeks old, she began to cry for a reason she, my husband and I didn’t know. 3 months of walking back and forth with a crying baby on my shoulder followed.
Time went by, my children grew fast. There were new challenges, but motherhood became easier. I began to remember that I was not only a mother, but also a wife and a woman with a dream – or two.
There were still no jobs for me. In the meanwhile, my husband has muscular dystrophy, which I had known all the time I had known him, but he began having less strength, and I had to help him more. However, that didn’t stop me from dreaming. I dreamt about becoming an author and about preaching God’s word. I wrote whenever I could, writing was my biggest dream.
God, what is your plan?
Then some weeks ago, my husband broke his leg. He needed my help more than ever and I became tired and had less time and energy to write, and I began to have a writer’s block. One day I stood in the middle of my dirty laundry and plates asking God: “Hey…Father, what is your plan?” Have I spent over 30 years walking in a fantasy of my fake fata morgana brain?
“My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. 9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9)
God had other plans for me than I thought. I was not happy to find out I was not a special person. I had to humble myself and ask God for forgiveness. I had to kill my own dreams and plans, I had to kill my pride. I realized the meaning of my unemployment, my motherhood and being married to a disabled man.
If any man would come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever would save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. (Luke 9:23-24)
I am where God wants me to be. He has taught me to deny myself and take up my cross. I’m still learning to let the spirit kill the desires and illusions of my mind. God’s thoughts and ways are holy. The way is Jesus.
As a child I dreamed of becoming beautiful, intelligent, smart and successful. One of my fears was that no one would remember me when I died. I believe the sons of Zebedee had the same dreams or ambitions as me. They came to the son of God and asked to sit beside him and the Father.
Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them.26 Not so shall it be among you: but whosoever would become great among you shall be your minister;27 and whosoever would be first among you shall be your servant: 28 even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. (Matt 20:25)
My life is not about me and what I am able to. I should only desire to serve. My life is about other people. There is value in serving my family. I no longer live for myself, but for Christ.
Surely, I will stumble and fall again and when l get lost inside my carnal mind, I will ask God about his plans. I may not be able understand his answers or way, but I can put my trust and faith in him and focus on Jesus. How good it is to run to Jesus and look at him and remember that he, the son of God, is a servant. Christ washes sinners’ dirty feet! He gave his life a ransom for many. He gave his life for you.
Oh, I promised to tell you what my daughter answered, when I asked my daughter what she wanted to become when she became an adult, her answer was: “I want to be a mom.”