Thursday, August 13, 2009
When I Dream
As a child, I had a huge imagination. I would make up my own stories and write my own "books" (I have always loved to write). As I got older and began to plan my own life, I started having my own dreams about what my life would be like. I dreamed of being a gospel singer---I dreamed of being a teacher---I dreamed of being a nurse---I dreamed of being an author. As I read about places around the world, I dreamed of traveling to Paris, London, Venice and Greece. I dreamed of cruise ships and moonlight dancing. I dreamed of Prince Charming and I dreamed of the children I would have.
What I didn't dream about was a life that would go on without the people I loved. I didn't think about marriage ending in betrayal and I didn't dream about a body wracked with pain everyday. I didn't dream about a faith that would be tested beyond its limitations. I couldn't imagine a life without hope. I did not anticipate dreams shattering and my whole world coming to a halt. I couldn't see these things happening---but they did.
For the longest time, I lost my dreams. I lost my vision of a happy life and a joyous future. I had no dreams to dream. I awoke every day, I went to work, I continued my responsibilities at my church, I spent time with my children, and I did it all feeling like it was someone else inside me. I felt like I had lost myself. My dreams were gone. No more writing, no more dreaming, no more hopes for the future. It was all gone---lost to the pain and agony of a life unfulfilled.
Ah, but we all know that God brings us 'round at the appointed time. I remember sitting on my sofa, looking at the clock and realizing four hours of time had gone by. I had been sitting in that same spot, unmoving, for four hours. There were times when I would say to myself, "Breathe, Marie. Just breathe.". Oh, how my heart hurt and how I wanted to retreat from life. I purposely stayed in the numbness of it all because it hurt so much to feel anything. But, as I said, God brings us 'round.
I heard His voice--I felt His presence. It was as if He sat next to me, put His arms around me and began to rock me. His presence was so real. I began to cry. No, I began to weep, great weeping sobs that swept over my entire body. Heaving sobs that came from my very gut. All the pain, all the sorrow, all the agony, burst forth in wave after wave of weeping. A scripture regarding the loss of the families of King David's soldiers says, "...they wept until they had no more power to weep...". That was me. I cried until I could cry no longer. Then, I slept. For the first time in months, I slept---soundly.
I awoke knowing that God had reached through the darkness of my life and had filled it with His light. I made coffee, I read the paper, I played my piano---and I sang!!! I sang until my throat was sore. I called my mother and asked her if she would make me breakfast. I ate with Mother and Daddy for the first time in months. Mother looked at me with tear-filled eyes while I ate her wonderful homemade biscuits and gravy. Daddy sat at the head of the table and looked me in the eye and said, "I knew you would come back sooner or later.". Mother hugged me as I got ready to leave that morning. Her heart was so full she could not speak but she hugged me tight. Daddy grabbed me and lifted me off my feet to swing me around Mother's kitchen while I laughed aloud like I did as a little girl. I had begun to heal.
That dark time of my life took place a long time ago. I have not forgotten those awful hours nor do I wish to. I want to remember what it was like to lose hope and dreams. It helps me remember now what it is like to have those hopes and dreams restored. It helps me understand others who are experiencing their own loss of dreams. It helps me pray effectively.
So what do I dream about now? I dream about traveling to Paris for my 60th birthday. I dream about singing gospel music on stage. I dream about writing books that will encourage the body of Christ. I dream about a grand-daughter. I dream about finding the love of my life. Most of all, I dream about being a woman God is proud of. I dream of being the woman of Proverbs. I dream of Heaven and I dream of the smile of God. Praise my precious Lord whose great love and mercy gave me back my dreams. I dream of Him--when I dream.