When I go with the family to Disney World, cast members encourage me to have a “magical day.” Supposedly, all I need to fulfill my dreams is to believe. Really? Evidently we’d like to think so, because the park fills every day with people eager to hear that message.
As a kid, my parents told me I was brilliant, that I could be anything I wanted to be. I’m sure that encouragement was a big factor in my excelling in school. If I had believed I wasn’t capable, I wouldn’t have tried, guaranteeing the fulfillment of my dream of failure.
Believe and it will happen. I like that idea. I sometimes hear Christians say, in essence, “Just believe God, and he’ll give you what you want.” Problem is, pursuit of my dreams have been my biggest nightmares.
What was the problem? I thought the Bible said, “All things are possible to those who believe” (Mark 9:23). I missed the condition under which that is true, the part about God having to be part of the work. It’s “with God” that all things are possible (Matthew 19:26). Except the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it (Psalm 127:1).
I’m still a big dreamer, believing in possibilities, but I now understand that the dreams only have value when God is in the effort.

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