By Lisa Huddleston
“For when dreams increase and words grow many, there is vanity; but God is the one you must fear” (Eccl. 5:7).
A dream has been growing in my heart, but I need to be very careful with my treatment of it. Dreams can be very fragile things. Especially if they are dragged into the daylight too soon. In much the same way as we speak of the danger of waking a sleepwalker, proclaiming what is still just a dream can burst that tenuous bubble with a bang. So I am still pondering it in my heart. But I know it is there, and it’s beginning to come to the surface despite my efforts to keep it under wraps. And I have to admit that I am afraid.
No, I’m not afraid that it will actually come true. What I fear the most is that it will arrive without the breath of life. A stillborn dream that will break my heart. Do you know what I mean? Some dreams lose their life in the telling. Especially if it is too soon—bit by bit they fade. A newborn dream is a very fragile thing.
I’ve heard it said that the only difference between a dreamer and a visionary is action. Which means at some point a dream has to face the fire. To become real, it must be tested. So I’ve begun to share. A little bit here. A little bit there. Testing the water to see how the people I trust respond. And so far so good. My supporters are backing it up. Breathing their encouragement into its tiny lungs, they say that this dream may be the real thing, but I know that I’m not ready yet. I still have work to do before this dream goes public. And that is probably a wise decision.
The writer of Ecclesiastes cautions against making rash decisions especially in matters that involve our relationship with the Lord. He writes, “Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. To draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they are doing evil. Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore, let your words be few. For a dream comes with much business, and a fool’s voice with many words” (Eccl. 5:1-3).
Wise words. Advice I should heed. Until the time is right. Once the vow is made then I will need to pay it, so caution is the best way to proceed. But the dream is still there, and I feel it’s faint heartbeat growing stronger with each flutter and kick. Until the time is right.
Do you have a dream in your heart? Has something been conceived that you hope will eventually be born to breathe in the light of day? Take care to nurture it and wait for God’s timing. Many words and vain and empty dreams will fade away, but a true word from the Lord will stand when the time is right. Until then, all “is vanity; but God is the one you must fear” (Eccl. 5:7).