The late Dr. Stephen Covey, best-selling author who helped change my life with his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, used to always say that “all things are created twice.” What he meant by that is that every new idea or concept or dream must be created twice: first in one’s mind and secondly in one’s life.
For example, let’s say you want to build a house. What do you do first? Start digging a hole? No. Before you start the actual work of building a house, you sit down and come up with a plan. You can’t just start digging and figure it out as you go. You first create the house on paper – in as much detail as possible – and then you begin the actual work of building the house physically.
The same holds true for a dream. Recently I wrote about the starting point of making your dreams a reality.
Step One: Dedicate your life to God
Step Two: Reserve alone time with God
You might not understand what those two steps have to do with realizing your dreams, but I promise you that if you try to shortcut those steps, you’ll regret – just as a builder would regret not putting enough detail into the blueprint. The more time and effort you invest in the first creation, the less time and effort you’ll waste while working on the second.
Or to say another way, Jesus said it like this:
“For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it— lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish’?” Luke 14:28-30
I was planning on writing today about the next three steps that you need to take to make your dreams a reality, but I wanted to write more detail about the first two steps – Dedicate your life to God and Reserve alone time with God – because if those steps aren’t done properly, you will severely limit your chances of realizing God’s dream for your life.
In other words, the planning phase is not the phase that you want to take shortcuts with. You wouldn’t start building a house unless you had a pretty good idea of what it is supposed to look like. And in the same way, don’t start pursuing a dream that you aren’t sure is from God. Don’t start investing in “a good idea” for your life; instead spend more time discovering God’s perfect will/plan/dream for your life.
Vincent van Gogh said it like this: “I dream my painting and I paint my dream.”
I’ve always believed that the most important thing in life is to establish and develop your relationship with God – to have a life giving and intimate relationship with the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. That is the most important thing for everyone to have.
But the second most important thing is to then discover God’s dream for your life – to know the reason He put you here and what He desires from you and for you. I don’t want to live my whole life and then realize at the end that I missed out on that dream. That dream is what gives significance to life on this earth and it’s what makes every day worth living. I don’t want to miss out on that dream.
And trust me…neither do you.
For discussion: what do you need to do to discover God’s dream for your life? Where do you need to invest more time/effort?