“Your old men will dream dreams. Your young men will see visions.” Joel 2:28
One of the greatest things in a man’s life is his dreams. His hope for the future that good things are in store-that he can make something happen that will ultimately define him as a success.
No man naturally envisions a life of insignificance or failure. It takes a few blows to the heart and a few arrows in the back for him to start doing that. Then and only then will he begin the process of giving in. For a man, this is the beginning of his death.
I know a man who has dreamed all his life of doing something good-something heroic. As a boy he dreamed freely. Then life betrayed him as it does all of us. It was a blow that knocked him off course, just a few degrees but none the less, off course. Then another arrow-this time from someone close, someone he trusted. The result was a sharp turn onto a pathway of addiction, hurt, and betrayal that lasted for several years. That pathway led to a dead end that broke him. He no longer had the strength of heart to dream. He saw nothing in the future. Hope was lost.
It was then that he was ready for the introduction. He met a man that would cause him to dream again. He would place the seed of a growing vision in his heart. The vision has been believed, doubted, laid down, purified, challenged, ridiculed, and everything else you can think of. For him, it is the source of great joy and extreme agony. It is all he can do to cling to what He believes God has shown him.
Why is it that so many no longer really dream? Why is it that countless men look forward to little more than what is on TV tonight or what kind of fun can be had this weekend? Why? Because it is far less painful. You can’t really mess those dreams up too badly can you? I mean, if I really envision a future of something great all kinds of painful scenarios come into the picture.
If I do truly pursue my dreams, I will have to rise personally to meet the challenge. I don’t know if I’ve got what it takes. I can be kind of irresponsible and well, lazy sometimes. TV is easier.
Also, if I do rise, something will happen to knock me down-it always does. I’m tired of that.
The problem with not dreaming though is even worse because “where there is no vision people perish” and they “cast off restraint”. Undisciplined, unfocused men cause problems. They become short-sighted and live for only now. Pleasure becomes a high priority. Men can become very destructive to themselves and those around them when they no longer dream.
The only hope for a man is to hear the Voice of Truth. It is a distinctly different voice than the other voice we have been hearing. The father of lies has convinced many to give up on any real hope for the future and sold us on the “American dream” which ends up really being a nightmare of foolishness. The voice of truth tells me a different story. It is the voice of my true Father. Listen to him:
Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT) 11 For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
Psalms 37:23-24 (NLT) “The steps of the godly are directed by the LORD. He delights in every detail of their lives. Though they stumble, they will not fall, for the LORD holds them by the hand.”
Psalms 73:24 (NLT) 24 You will keep on guiding me with your counsel, leading me to a glorious destiny.
1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT) "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him."
When my friend’s vision gets blurred and he starts to think about giving in, I just remind him of the Voice of Truth. His voice clears up everything for me-I mean my friend.
We’ll continue this discussion this week.