Today we welcome back one of my favorite writers, Brandi Rennemeyer, to the blog. Brandi’s writing is like putting on a pair of warm slippers and curling up with a cup of hot tea. She has a vivid style of describing environments and experiences in a way that brings them to life and immerses you into the scene. She is a source of continual encouragement to me, and I can always count on her words to bring truth in a way that says “me too” rather than “how to.”
You’ll find Brandi Rennemeyer sipping coffee with her feet propped up on an overflowing laundry basket. Three children and a dreamy husband may fill her house with joy and lots of laundry, but Jesus is her heart beat and she loves to writes about authentic faith on her blog.
Today Brandi will be talking about the third area of renewal we will be exploring together: the renewal of God-given dreams and passions.
When Dreaming Is Just Too Scary
I wish I could tell you that I’ve always dreamed of being a writer or a speaker. Or that I practiced preaching to millions of my toys and autographed my construction paper books for the crowds. I didn’t have those dreams. In fact, I don’t think I even dreamt of being a mom or a wife. Oh I played house, and teacher and ponies, in the back yard with great fervor and imagination. I even officiated a wedding for my brother and my friend in our playroom. But dreamt of a real future, no.
Dreaming was just too scary.
It only took one letdown, one disappointment laced with shame, to teach me the treachery of dreaming. What if what I’d dreamt of never came to be? What if I invested all sorts of hope only in the end to be utterly shredded by the disappointment of a failed attempt? What if I really wasn’t capable of (or worthy of) having that dream fulfilled?
For the longest time, that possibility was too much to bear. Any dream was too precarious and I was too fragile to overcome.
I’d been a shell and dead to any dream, any passion, any talent in my soul. If you were to go back over my journals throughout high school and college I begged God to make me “good at something”; I begged Him to reveal “what made me unique”.
But my eyes were clouded by cataracts of fear, fear that I wasn’t worthy enough. It would take staring death in the face to see the wretched decay already permeating my soul and over taking the truth.
I had forgotten who I was, who I was created to reflect. Wearing the cloak of failure and the shameful colors of “not enough” is not who I was created to be.
Isaiah 43:1,4,7 says:
Listen to the LORD who created you.
O Israel, the one who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine.
Others were given in exchange for you.
I traded their lives for yours
because you are precious to me.
You are honored, and I love you.
Bring all who claim me as their God,
for I have made them for my glory.
It was I who created them.’”
We are God’s handiwork, His masterpieces set apart to display His majestic splendor. I was created for His glory. And He wouldn’t forsake me or leave me empty and barren. As I bled out all of the lies and shame-filled venom and then allowed the transfusion of His blood to fill my veins with life, I began to see, really see.
He dreams dreams of me. He has plans and designs for me. He created me with purpose. And He created me with unique passions that will glorify Him. It is my choice to believe Him, to receive His truth.
The power of redemption is so much more than overcoming sin and being rescued from the depths of hell. It is an abundance, a security, a freedom.
With His blood comes approval and honor, not for what we do but for who we are. I am not the sum of my failures, or even the sum of other’s perceptions. I am a complete sum of His redemption.
And so are you.
As we lean into Him, fully embracing His love and redemption for us He begins to nurture the creative seeds of purpose already planted in our souls. As we grow in confidence in our identity as a child of God, dreams and passions begin to bloom as well. His creation cannot help but praise Him with our gifts and passions.
And dreaming of how to fully worship my Savior with all that I am is not so perilous after all. In fact dreaming out of a place of acceptance and redemptive love is a level of satisfaction I never even imagined.
I will praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, Oh God! ~ Psalm 139:14
Dream on dear dreamer, dream on.