It's okay to be ordinary.
Do you believe that to be true?
Paddling out on the lake makes me feel really small. One stroke at a time, making my way across the inlet, around the island, gazing up at tall pine trees or at the flock of pelicans on the other shore. When I sit on my board and just float, I ponder my little presence on the lake in contrast to the greatness of the One who made it.
It's hard to feel small, but I think it's because we equate it with insignificance - which is very telling, because it reveals our hearts desire for purpose.
Some of us are wired as dreamers or visionaries, others are creatives trying to stamp their brand in the world, still more feel the draw of social media to grow their platform.
Perhaps we envision the future of our ministry, programs or reach; maybe it's the professional role you're striving to achieve.
We long for significance.
In Dream Small: The Secret Power of the Ordinary Christian Life , Seth Lewis helps us consider our big dreams and challenges us to dream better. Not that there's anything inherently wrong with our pursuit, but he "wants to make sure that we aim the drive and power of our ambitions in the direction of things that matter much more, and for much longer, than mere fame, fortune or power,"which are intoxicating.
Instead of being lured in by the bait of culture, we learn and identify our purpose as believers to know and enjoy God, and to do good for others. God's kingdom work is His priority and the mission He has given us to. Here we will discover our lasting legacy, our identity and our calling.
A seed dropped onto concrete won't germinate; for a seed to fulfill its design it must drop onto soil where it will find nourishment and grow. Dreams outside of God's goal for His people are the same way, hindered from producing a harvest.
Reflecting on our own ambitions, peeling back our motivations, we ask the Spirit to search our hearts to reveal the dust bunnies of flesh hidden in the dark corners, that God's greatness would shine and His humility mirrored.
This is an ongoing practice for me.
I'm wired to envision the big picture, which helps me break down smaller steps to achieve them. Not that there's some grand dream in my mind, it's just how I see the world. So whether it's my studies, my writing or other roles in my life, I endeavor to remember God's kingdom first and surrender my self to His greatness, trusting that He will fulfill His purposes for me, even in the ordinary life, even in the small things.
"What I do know is this: no dream (no matter how big) and no gift (no matter how wonderful) can satisfy you and give you the unshakable joy and life you long for when these are separated from the giver."
I recommend this book for those of you who struggle with knowing your purpose in an ordinary life, or with temptation toward bigger dreams, to find encouragement in God's purposes for you, right where you are.
# of pages: 103
Level of Difficulty: Easy
My rating: 5 stars
*A big thanks to the Good Book Company for the complimentary copy of this book and the opportunity to post an honest review!