Guest Post: In Line With Our Dreams…Or Not

There’s not a lot to say here other than I totally adore this girl. We met in our early London days and so much has changed in our lives since, but our friendship has only grown. Check out her words, coming from the girl living the good and bad days of her dream. You can read more about her at the end of the post. -Micaela

Here’s the way I like to think about myself in relation to my dreams, and about the line that connects me to them: Strong, solid, as though I’m in a boat and that line is a sturdy chain reaching down to the ocean floor.

With my dreams as an anchor at the end.

After all, isn’t that what Paul says in Hebrews? “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.”

Now here’s the way I more often feel in relation to my dreams: Weak, wavering, as though I’m ten years old again and that line is attached to a capricious kite. The kite being my dreams.

There’s hardly any wind to lift the dumb thing off the ground, and when a breeze does pick up, the kite dips and dives and drops away from me, forever uncontrollable. Up when things go right and I hear back from editors (as a freelance writer, this isn’t always the case); down when things don’t and my inbox is empty.

But a little while ago, I came across a verse, another classic from Paul, that began to change my perspective: “The lines of purpose in your lives never grow slack, tightly tied as they are to your future in heaven, kept taut by hope.” (Colossians 1:5, MSG).

There were a lot of words in there I didn’t recognise, not when it comes to feeling secure in my dreams, at least: Never slack, tightly tied, taut.

Each phrase paints a picture of a kite filled to the max with wind, soaring so high it’s actually pulling at the spindle of string in your hand. Certainly not the measly, homemade kite I often feel stuck with, especially when another round of doubts and questions kick up:

Am I really a writer? Will my book ever be published? What am I doing with my life?

Sound familiar?

But Paul’s verse was a revelation – that no matter how far away I sometimes feel from realizing my dreams, if I stay grounded in a perspective of heaven and continually acknowledge my true purpose here on earth, then I’m closer to my dreams than I think.

Pursuing your dreams isn’t easy. Keeping the faith often feels more like a roller coaster of emotions. But that’s where things like belief and hope come into play.

Because ultimately, the spool of kite string isn’t in our hands. It’s in God’s.

——-

Candace Rose Rardon is a writer and photographer with a passion for travel and adventure. After finishing her Masters in Travel Writing from London’s Kingston University, she celebrated by driving an auto-rickshaw 3,000 kilometers across India. Thankfully she lived to write about it and can’t wait to see where her dreams take her next. Read about her travels at The Great Affair and on Twitter.

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Looking for Purpose & Writing About It

It’s raining, again, and I am rushing, as usual, through the City to catch a train (it’s all we ever do in London!). I’m struggling to balance my umbrella, my swimming bag and my handbag, while stomping my way to the station. And all I really want to do is yell into the empty rain what I’m thinking:

‘GOD, I WANT TO DO EPIC SHIT! Where is my epic purpose hiding?’

I’m pretty much a broken record with this, and have been since I left school. His response was frustrating, to say the least. ‘You should write about that.’

Clearly the only thing He wants me to understand right now, is that I should write about it. The funny thing is, I don’t even know why I have this blog. I never wanted to be a writer! I don’t have dreams of writing a book, like many other bloggers, and I haven’t been writing stories since I was a kid. I’ve just been talking too much since I was a kid. I don’t have a category, niche or target audience. I’m not a well versed Christian with loads of knowledge.

I’m just a 20-something girl figuring it out and writing about it honestly, in this little corner of the web. I don’t know why I write it and have no idea why you read it, alas, it’s working. (Seriously, thank you!)

What I’m learning is that it doesn’t matter that I don’t know what I’m doing, or why I’m doing it. All that matters is that I’m doing. I’m moving, albeit in an unknown direction, it’s still progressive. God is weaving busily in the background, and even if I never write again in the future, my efforts here won’t be wasted. In the process, I am finding my voice. Not just as a writer, but as a sister, friend, twenty-something, and daughter of Christ.

Lauren Dubinsky, one of my favourite bloggers and creator of Good Women Project, says it perfectly.

Go, do, make, create. Keep experimenting and taking risks until you find what makes your heart swell. Oh, and make sure your passions aren’t birthed from a place of proving yourself to others, but rather as a result of God giving you the freedom to play.

With all my whining, crying and pleading, I think God gets it. I want to do ‘epic shit’. However, perspective is important. I can bloom where I’m planted and recognise the awesome position I am in currently. Blessed job, travelling often, incredible friends, living abroad. It’s not so bad!

Truth be told, I’ve felt frustrated and stagnant recently. But in the mundane of daily life, God is preparing me and using me. The last year has been the hardest of my life, but it’s also been the making of me. Every piece of the mosaic has a purpose.

Whether it’s a fancy career, or writing, or speaking, or having a family, or solving world poverty forever, or traveling across the world on a donkey. God knows what it is, and I know that it’s good.

As of today, God can do what He does best: work everything out for good. My failures, my successes, my fears, and my dreams. All I need to do is live in the day by prioritising my relationship with God, my character and integrity, and the people around me. To believe in myself and take opportunities that come my way. That’s my responsibility. Everything else (i.e. the ‘epic shit’) will fall into place.

In the meantime, I’ll write about it.

Have you found your purpose or are you still looking? Does your life look how you thought it would? Leave a comment.

Have Peace, Take Heart!

I had this petrifying thought the other day. I was day dreaming of all things pretty. I.e. What big life change will be next. I like elaborate, life-altering changes, you see. Moving to London was big but that was four years ago now. I need something else new and fresh, because I’m 22 and I’m still in that stage of life where I crave adventure.

Well, I say that I crave adventure, but it’s not entirely true. I do desire a big life full of great experiences, but I also love routine. You have no idea how much I like knowing what I’m doing everyday and that I will get paid a consistent salary at the end of the month. Yet I have this constant unsettledness inside that wants to take risks now, while I can. Yes, fear of the unknown scares the heck out of me, but mediocrity scares me even more.

My personal definition of mediocrity being…? Letting opportunities pass me by in case it won’t work out. Working for money and not passion. Essentially, mediocrity to me is choosing the safe road instead of the leap-of-faith road. So until I find the passion that will drive the cause of my life, I’ll just keeping jumping off cliffs. (Figuratively speaking, obviously!)

Anyway, now that you have the back story to my day-dreaming, I’ll get back to this terrifying thought I had. It was simply the possibility of loneliness and displacement that may befall me as the repercussion to another drastic decision. Once the fun is over and the sun has set, who will I be? Where will I be? What will I want?

Will I be happy? It’s the greatest paradox of our human existence; the pursuit of happiness.

Quite a depressing moment, it was. Realising and eventually accepting that no, I will not always be happy. In fact, God forbid, sometimes I will be desperately unhappy. Thinking of the future heartache, frustration and disappointment that I am yet to experience in my future. Pre-empting the worst.

The Bible puts it perfectly:

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

You will have trouble, without a doubt. Have peace. Take heart. He has overcome the world! What GOOD news. 

So, yes, I will have trouble. But when I set my foundations on the promises of God and truly take Him at His word – that He has overcome the world – I will have peace. Not necessarily always joy, but peace. Peace that surpasses all understanding, in fact. (Philippians 4:7)

It’s important that I remember there are also some utterly amazing moments yet to make my acquaintance. I haven’t even sctratched the surface of life and all it has to offer – the bad but also the good. After thoughtful consideration, I’ve decided I would experience the bad 10x over if it meant I got the good stuff too.

I’ll take it all, please and thank-you. Every season, stage and phase that the menu of life has to offer. Happiness is transient and temporary, God is not. 

And to think that I’ve already faced fire in my short life, and much of it now but a distant memory. I only have forgiveness to thank for that. I am so much stronger than I was because I discovered that I had a choice. The choice to be refined by the suffering, or to be burned. I daily choose the former, along with a healthy dose of God’s grace, and He’s doing something beautiful in my heart.

I’m happy, for now, and that’s good enough for me.

Can you relate to any of the above? How do you feel about taking risks, and what’s your greatest fear when it comes to stepping out of your comfort zone? 

22 September 2020

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11

I just saw the date 22 September 2020 and it occurred to me that on that date I will be turning 31 years old. Quite bizarre really, to think about that properly and what it means. I had a moment to ponder on what kind of life I will have on my 31st birthday and I only had excitement in my heart. That made me happy in itself since it’s so easy to be scared of the mysterious future. I am so thankful that I don’t have to be worried or fearful of what the future will bring. Personally, I think it will be so much better than I imagine! But it’s always fun to imagine…

In my inexperienced, unknowing 21 year old mind, this is how I picture my life in 2020: I’ll be living in the Southern Hemisphere somewhere with a wonderful husband, in a home that we own. I’ll be pregnant with our third child, or in the process of adopting our first. I’ll be very involved in church leadership and fighting for a cause with my husband, a cause that I am yet to discover, a cause bigger than myself and that will go on after I pass. We will be financially secure and comfortable with a bank account large enough to bless those around us.

For all I know, that life could be the stark opposite of the reality that is before me. I don’t know where I’ll be, I barely know what I want, but I DO know my life will be large, blessed and full of love! I thank God that I can dream like this because so many people either don’t know how to or don’t want to.

What do you dream about? Do you have high hopes for the future? Leave a comment!