To the Girl Whose Dreams Aren't Coming True: how to live with purpose and enjoy the life you have right now
And that can be hard. Dreams unmet. A future unknown. And this can stir up feelings of discontentment and purposelessness.
Maybe you’re in a similar place. Maybe you’ve got dreams that aren’t coming true, and you’re just left wondering what it is you’re supposed to be doing right now.
I know what it is to dream and long and desire, and have those dreams and longings and desires go unrealized and unmet and unfulfilled.
But in the midst of the dreaming, I don’t want to miss out on life now. I don’t want to live only “in the meantime,” simply waiting for my life to really begin when those dreams become realities.
One place in Scripture that speaks to us about our dreams and desires is in Psalm 37:
I have desires in my heart. Deep desires I believe were placed inside me by God when He wove me together in the womb.
We all have dreams that God gave us. God puts desires and passions in our hearts, connected to His purpose for us. And it’s okay, it’s good, to pursue our dreams as we follow Jesus.
But sometimes, I know my dreams and desires become distorted and disfigured. They become not the dreams God placed in my heart, but the things I’m living for. Idols I serve through discontentment and ingratitude with the life I have now, believing that my fulfillment and wholeness is found in the fulfillment of my dreams, and not in the One who gave me those dreams, who gives me life.
And in this discontent, I begin to treat God, The Beginning and The End, as a means-to-an-end. I serve so He will grant my wishes. I think maybe if I’m a good Christians girl, maybe if I do all the right things, maybe if I please Him enough, those dreams will come true. My desire is for me, not for God. I’m really seeking to please myself.
We are called to delight in the Lord. To delight is to have a high degree of pleasure, satisfaction, and enjoyment. Jesus is to be our pleasure, the One who satisfies us, the One we enjoy. And isn’t it beautiful that He promises to be this for us, offering satisfaction and joy to our souls as we live in relationship with Him?
Jesus is to be the ultimate desire of our hearts.
Even when our dreams aren’t coming true, in Jesus there is still joy and purpose. So how do we live with this purpose enjoy the lives we have now?
The verses that surround Psalm 37:4 tell us:
Trust. Commit. Be still. Wait patiently. This is how we are called to live each day. And this is how we find purpose and joy in each day.
What does this look like in our daily lives?
Continually give your dreams to God
Trust God with the desires of your heart and commit those desires to Him. Release your control and surrender your plan to Him. His timing and will are good, perfect, and pleasing. God is the One who placed the dreams in your heart, so you can trust Him as you place those dreams into His hands.
Continually seek God’s will
God has a purpose and plan for your life, and His dreams for us are so much bigger, and so much better, than ours. He’s the One who thought of the universe and spoke it into existence. He’s the One who is able to do more than we could ask or imagine. As we seek God’s will, we’re allowing the desires of our hearts to come in line with the desires of His heart. And His desires are always for our good and for His glory.
Engage in spiritual disciplines
The word discipline isn’t always a popular one. We can think of it in a negative light. But God disciplines those He loves, and He has given us spiritual disciplines to engage in so we can live in relationship with Him. Praying, reading God’s Word, being a part of the Body of Christ, and serving others are all spiritual disciplines we are called to make a part of our lives. These grow and strengthen our faith. They equip and empower us to do God’s will. They reveal to us what God’s will is and His character.
Be faithful in doing what you know to do
Even if it’s not-so-glamorous task, even if it seems small and insignificant, be faithful to do what you know God has called you to do right now. Don’t get so caught up in wishing and waiting for those dreams that you miss being a part of God’s kingdom work right now.
Just take the next step in obedience and faith, even if you can’t see the destination
Jesus calls us to follow Him, and sometimes following Him is a stepping into the unknown. But we can know that He is with us every step of the way, and will provide all we need. Trust that Jesus is guiding you, and live in obedience to Him, one step at a time.
Hold onto hope
Sometimes the hardest part about our dreams not coming true is the not knowing when they will come true. Don’t let this worry or despair over when your dreams will come true steal your hope away. Be still before the God who is trustworthy. Wait on the Lord, who will keep every promise. He will never leave nor forsake. He will guide and provide. He will hear your prayers. He does hear your prayers. Keep dreaming and chasing after the dreams God has given you.
Enjoy the journey
Even when dreams aren’t coming true, there is still joy, because there is still Jesus. We don’t have to wait for our dreams to come true to live our lives. We can enjoy the journey, because we are journeying with Jesus.