This is the time of year when dreams bloom and flourish, just about the only thing that can grow in the blustery chill of a seemingly endless winter. For untold numbers of us go-getter types, a fresh set of 365 days is the perfect catalyst to revisit goals that have fallen by the wayside, tasks that have gone long uncompleted and hopes that have been knocked down by a shift in priorities. Our necessities almost always manage to bully our desires into waiting for a more convenient time. And it usually comes around after the holidays, when everybody else has been taken care of and we have a few fleeting moments to reflect on ourselves.
When our year is renewed, our ambition is too, and we take to planning and plotting and sacrificing and strategizing to resuscitate that unaccomplished checklist. We speak change over our lives and make all those resolutions in a fair start toward our achievements. We pray for things we want to come to pass and expect to make strides—or at the very least, a few footsteps—toward them during the 12 months that stretch out like a field of virginal snow in front of us. It’s all very poetic, very hopeful and very easy to get caught up in the rapture.
But what if you’re dreaming the wrong dream?
What if you never get married?
What if you never have kids?
What if you never land your fantasy job?
What if you never survive as an entrepreneur?
What if you don’t buy that gorgeous home?
If it never happens, who will you be?
Some of us make such an emotional and mental investment into our plans that they become part of who we are and we stop being flexible enough and open enough and available enough to receive what’s really destined for us, especially if it doesn’t look like what we’ve been expecting. We hitch at least part of our identity and a whole lot of our potential for joy onto the possibility of a certain something finally coming to pass. We hit the “I’ll be so happy when…” and the “I’ll do X when I get Y” and put pieces of our lives—and a whole lot of our gratitude—on pause in anticipation for these things to unfold.
But if they never happen, what does that do to our faith? To our ability to keep dreaming?
If you knew me in real life, you would find me to be delightfully optimistic and can-do spirited. The effervescent cheerleader. The yes-we-can spokeschick. If you believe, I believe, and we can believe together. So naturally, I don’t have anything against the motivational energy that bubbles up in January. I’m basking in it myself, though I didn’t make any hard and fast resolutions for my 2013. I just crossed out the ‘2’ on the ones from 2012 and turned the last digit into a ‘3’ because they’re just carrying over, like an annual math equation, much like they probably did the year before if I could remember that far back.
We just have to remember through the resolution-making and the new year declarations that we’re all writers but God is the editor and he can change the story at any time. I’m confident that what you’ve been waiting to unfold, patiently or not-so-patiently, will align with what you’re destined to have and it’ll all work out for your personal celebration and satisfaction. So happy new year, y’all, and I pray your resolutions not only become actualized, but that you stay open to tweaks, revisions and edits as necessary.