Living the Dream

When I was very little, I wanted to be an archeologist. I liked watching Indiana Jones with my dad (who I saw in ATL a few weeks ago by the way, see picture below), and ‘archeologist’ was the biggest word I knew.

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Then I met a boy on my school bus who was a budding artist, and being the competitive person that I am, I started picking up my pencil as well. I bought “How to Draw” books and watched Mark Kistler’s Imagination Station on PBS. My dreams morphed. Disney: Make way! I’m growing up to be an animator. As it turns out, I’m not the best artist. (I mean I’m not bad, just not like… Disney-material.) In retrospect, this was a happy accident. Cartoons seem to be a lot more about computer code these days and that would have never worked out for me.

Radio DJ, professional softball player, journalist, youth pastor… my dreams kept evolving. It’s ironic how you are never less sure of what you want to do with your life than when it is most necessary to make some decisions about your future. After finishing college, with a degree in youth ministry, I got involved in missions.

I like to call this, iDream version 4.0. Working at AIM and helping start, develop, and operate The World Race marked a sweet-spot in my life. There were numerous trips back from Asia on airplanes where I thought, “I LOVE my life! I’m living the dream!” And while I was willing to plant my feet and settle in the land of “living the dream,” underneath the surface those dreams continued to morph. God was preparing my dreams for a mega ‘software update.’

Finishing up my time at AIM was all about making room, preparing my heart, and prepping for the launch of version 5.0. It was necessary to let go of the old to make way for the new. It was time to say goodbye to what was good and wait in expetancy for the better. It’s necessary for dreams to evolve because you don’t want them becoming stale, outdated, and useless for the ever-morphing world.

Enter iDream version 5.0. All the aspects of my former dreams combined into something new. This dream update still involves working with young people. It keeps the passions for missions and the nations. Some of the new features that were added to version 5.0 have been a direct result of successes and needs found in the previous versions. Sustainable business models, in-depth training for missionaries, start-ups, marketing, discipleship and many others have now become highlighted features in regards to my dreams and my life.

The past 4 months have been good and difficult. The whole process of finding a job, applying, accepting, and transitioning into my role was exciting and faith-building. I’ve been working in an administrative and marketing role in Midtown Atlanta. The job wasn’t everything I’ve ever wanted but I tried to learn as much as I could about business and job environments outside of missions. Most importantly this job allowed me the time and gave me the motivation to contemplate what features and aspects of my dreams I wanted to take into my next season. I needed to decide what bugs and problems needed to be addressed and what features just needed to be dropped all together. After some doors opened up and I had some conversations, my dreams went back into development.

For the moment, I know where I’m going. My newest version of my dreams will be launching in January; it’s a beta test of version 5.0  It’s all very exciting. I expect that down the road, we will go into another development phase and we will see version 5.2, 5.8, 6.0 and so on. For me, it’s comforting to know there is so much fliuidty in living my dreams. Realizing that dreams are constantly undergoing updates brings me peace. My season of “living the dream” isn’t over. No matter what my reality is currently, God is still at work developing the bigger picture.

What about you? How have your dreams morphed and changed for the better over the years? What was the catalyst for the change?

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