If you spent your entire life training for one magical moment, the second you see a dream come to fruition, and then suddenly that dream unraveled before your very eyes, what would happen to you?
Oh how we stake all our hopes on things that may or may not come to be reality within our lives. We are ladder climbing, star reaching people. And that’s not entirely a bad thing: sometimes, when we are living in the dreamless desert, we need to prepare for the rain.
We know that God answers prayer, and that radical dreams often do come to fruition when they’re prayed in His will. So what are you doing to prepare? When I was a kid, one of my favorite movies was Facing The Giants, and there’s a scene in the movie that sticks with me:
Mr. Bridges: “There were two farmers who desperately needed rain, and both of them prayed for rain. But only one of them went out and prepared his fields to receive it. Which one do you think trusted God to send the rain?”
Coach Taylor: “The one who prepared his fields for it?”
Mr. Bridges: “Which one are you? God will send the rain when He is ready. You need to prepare your field to receive it.”
When you trust that God is capable of bringing the rain, you get ready for it. An example of this is in Philemon 22; Paul is in prison, but he asks Philemon to prepare a guest room for him because he wants to visit soon. Paul had no clue whether or not he would actually be released from prison, but he wanted Philemon to be ready in case God decided freedom was what was good in Paul’s life.
Yet, while we should be getting ready for the rain, training for what’s ahead even when it hasn’t become reality yet, what happens if the dream just dies? Paul stays in prison, you work your whole life, and that career, that THING doesn’t ever come to be.
What becomes of us?
It’s at that point where we have to learn to really LOVE the process itself. I’m currently reading a book called An Astronaut’s Guide To Life on Earth (HIGHLY recommend) written by the amazing astronaut Colonel Chris Hadfield. He writes of training for space exploration,
“The ratio of prep time to time on orbit is many months: single day in space…If you viewed training as a dreary chore, not only would you be unhappy every day, but your sense of self-worth and professional purpose would be shattered if you were ever scrubbed from a mission – or never got one. Some astronauts never do.”
Even when you have a dream in mind or you’re eying the next rung of the ladder, that can’t be the end all and be all. If you never take the time to appreciate simply learning, thinking, training, and fall in love with the process itself, you will be throwing your life away all in hopes of achieving some distant thing.
“Success is feeling good about the work you do throughout the long, unheralded journey that may or may not wind up at the launch pad. You can’t view training solely as a stepping stone to something loftier. It’s got to be an end in itself.”
Learn to love growing as a person and becoming a better you, and you will feel like you have achieved something even if the end goal remains out of reach.
Get ready for the rain, yes, but get ready for the dream to die as well. Learn and live and enjoy it all, and you won’t be staking your life on tomorrows.