As my husband and I find ourselves in the position of waiting in the wings for an important decision to be made (a few decisions, actually--isn't that always the way?), I find myself pondering the issue of dreams and how we are to fashion our lives around them.
I do not, of course, mean fever dreams or crazy nighttime dreams, like my recurring dream about riding flying dinner plates through the sky over the rooftop of my old college after curfew.
What I mean by "dreams" are the kinds of dreams we have as children and teenagers and young adults. The dreams we have about our lives and the directions that they will take.
For me, the surroundings of my life dreams differed, as sometimes I wished to be a politician's wife or a lawyer or a chemist or even a famous singer or interior designer. One thing remained constant, throughout my outrageous dreaming, however. And that one "thing" was a family. I always wanted a loving, doting husband and precious children to call our own.
More often than not, the position of a housewife is not highly valued or desired. If you are a girl who shows any kind of academic promise, for instance, you are pushed from day one--by teachers, parents, guidance counselors, etc.-- to "make something of yourself" and "do something important with your life," as if being a wife or a mother is not something, as if supporting and serving your family is not important.
The truth is, we cannot make anything of ourselves. Even if we work hard to get the job we have always dreamed of, it is not guaranteed we will get it. God may have that job in mind for someone else.
What is even scarier to me is the fact that sometimes God lets us have something we were never meant to have. Maybe even your "dream job."
When my husband served as a pastor, one of the things I discussed most with women was remembering that your husband is your first ministry. The world tells us it is meaningless for your whole life's purpose to center around serving someone else. But think about this for a minute: Isn't the entire purpose of the Christian life to serve and honor Christ? By the world's standards, our lives are already ridiculous if we are living them the way Christ has called us to live them.
So why, then, do we buy into the world's lies when it comes to making our husbands and children top priority? Who are we serving by serving our husbands and families anyway?
I am not saying that we aren't allowed to have dreams, pursue dreams, or have careers outside the home. But, I am saying that we need to consider the purpose of our lives and if we have fashioned our lives around the right priorities.
This trickles down to every aspect, by the way--not just to money and importance. It also means examining our roles in ministries at church. If more women took the time and effort they spent on church ministries and spent it instead on their husbands and children, some of those church ministries would not be needed. Or, an older lady, whose kids have grown up in the Lord, who is wiser and older in the Lord, could take our places in ministry.
Older woman don't have all the answers, true; but they have had more life experience. And many have been saved for longer than I have been alive. The younger generation (myself included) needs to learn to sit back, let someone else "take our place," minister to our own families, and spend our younger days LEARNING FROM THE LORD.
Otherwise, what are we teaching other people by the example of our lives? That it's okay to neglect our husbands and children? That having a group of friends or a ministry or a career or an education or "me time" is more important than ministering to our immediate families?
Know this--eventually the seeds we have sown into the ground will sprout and grow. I know that I have talked a lot about seeds and fruit and growing things this month. But there are many aspects of it to consider, especially as it relates to our lives.
God is good and gracious to us. We need to consider His purpose and live our lives in light of it, planting His Word in our hearts and minds, serving and honoring Him. I promise that is the most fashionable life we can ever hope to live.