“Shut-up!” I scream, and tackle her to the ground, wishing I had zip-ties and a clue how to use them. But, as always, she is still talking; what I really need is a gag. Her incessant cheer and vibrant voice do not induce me to smile and speed ahead into the list of how to do what she just KNOWS will bring us success . . . no, no, no! I simply wish to clobber her and make her cease.
Her bright eyes do not dim, doesn’t she know the precarious position she is in? Doesn’t she recognized where she has driven us with her insane vision? I look around me, there is nothing familiar here, I don’t know how to navigate on this unfamiliar terrain. “Stop it!” I holler, “it’s not going to work — you don’t understand!”
She doesn’t, she can’t see what is coming, she can’t fathom what barricades, what chasms, what broken bridges lie ahead . . . all she sees is the charismatic joy in reaching our final destination. “We can’t,” but my voice is a hesitant whisper because I want to believe in the dream.
At last her eyes look into mine, she isn’t beaming in her self-deluded dreamland – she is staring hard at me in pity. “Why don’t you want this anymore?”
I shake my head, “What?”
“You used to believe, you used to push and thrive . . . you used to be me.”
I blink in stupor at the mirror, at the face her face has become. It’s my face, no longer rounded by youth, my eyes now lined with anxiety, and my mouth pinches tight. I used to dream, I used to believe . . . I was once her . . .
But when dreams didn’t materialize the way I imagined, the way I planned, I believed it was God saying, “No,” instead of God saying, “Wait, grow a little, you’ll be ready soon.”
Oh, God, when did I lose my faith? Why did I push away my dreams, the ones that You have gifted me to do? When I did I lose sight of how BIG You are, and reduced my prayers to whimpering sighs, as though You don’t want me to succeed for Your name’s sake.
I cry for awhile, regret filling my mind with “what-ifs” while fear shakes my frame. But the Spirit consoles me, reminds me, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:8-10, NASB)
So, Lord God, I’m done running, arguing, and I wish I could say I am finished being afraid. Each step I take on this road toward fulfilling my dreams of reaching women with the transforming grace of Your gospel through my writing, drama, and teaching I feel more overwhelmed. But at the same time, I am certain You won’t leave me alone. I want to do only what You desire, and I won’t bury my talent any longer. Please, I ask You to give me boldness to do my utmost for You to the best of the ability You have given me. Oh, God, You are so much bigger, wider, greater than I could fathom, and when I falter on a broken bridge, stall out before a chasm, or hit my head against a barricade, help me to grow in that hard place. Teach me to be teachable so that whatever Your dream is, my heart will be right with You, and even if I fail in the eyes of the world, I will stand blameless, cleansed by Your Son’s holy blood. Thank You, Father, for loving me. In Jesus name, amen.