Jeanne Takenaka

What does it look like when we’re pursuing dreams, and they don’t come true?

Since my teen years, I’ve wanted to become a published author. This you know if you’ve read my blog for any length of time. Dreams implant themselves in our hearts when we’re young. Sometimes others in our lives affirm them. And, sometimes we clutch them close inside, not sharing with anyone, for fear of the great “What If.”

What if we do everything we can to make them come true and they still remain simply a dream? 

Is there a possibility we were off-base when we began pursuing the dream?

A hand writing in a journal, a visual of pursuing dreams of publication

What if we are seeking our kingdom, our glory, over God’s?

Dreams have a way of forcing us to evaluate our intentions and our motivations. This can be a good thing, when we lay them before our Father. In the years since I began this journey, God’s refined much in me as I’ve learned craft, started a blog, and written stories from my heart.

A closed in path with rocks on one side, a reminder that pursuing dreams often has obstacles

3 Things I’ve Learned About Pursuing Dreams:

Though pursuing dreams provides many lessons, here are three thought lessons I’m learning.

Pursuing dreams requires work and a whole lotta brave.

Many people say they want a certain dream, but they don’t work toward achieving it. Though there are many reasons for this, I suspect fear is at the root of most of them. When God gives a dream, we need to seek Him for His vision. We must learn the necessary skills to accomplish the dream. And we must put ourselves out there. This is where the “brave” comes in. 

Dreams encourage humility.

God uses dreams to conform us to the image of His Son. I began my writing journey certain I could achieve it with hard work and a willing heart. I entered contests, submitted my books to agents . . . and none of them have been accepted yet. When I received positive feedback, I admit sometimes, it went to my head. 

God has used my dream to nurture humility. He’s also helped me to understand that, just because my stories have been rejected, doesn’t mean that I’m less-than, not good enough, or dumb for even trying. These years have helped me better understand my identity in Him. I am God’s daughter, His girl. And when I grasped that truth, it helped me to live with more confidence and peace.

A path through a grove of bare trees with obstacles in the path, similar to what we face when pursuing dreams

Dreams reveal our inner motives.

When I first began to write, I thought I’d find my value when my name was imprinted across the top of a book cover. What God revealed is that my dream of being a published author was originally based in trying to gain glory for me. 

3 Thoughts For How To Think When Pursuing Dreams—God has a way of reshaping our vision of our dreams into His vision for the dream. #dreams #trustgod #tellhisstory Click To Tweet

I know. That sounds terrible. But, God has a way of reshaping our vision of our dreams into His vision for the dream. Often, this requires that we die to ourselves before He can bring about His greater purpose in our lives and in the dream being fulfilled. When we yield our hearts to Him, God can work mightily in and through us. When we cling to our vision for the dream, we hinder God’s greater purpose.

Meme with the words: "When we cling to our vision for the dream, we hinder God's greater purpose" on a backdrop of a photo with a path and a rock drop-off.

Laying our dreams before our Father

Pursuing dreams isn’t easy. It’s sometimes painful, scary, and discouraging. Allen Arnold, a well-known speaker and author, shares the image of a girl dancing with her Father, her feet on top of His, moving with Him and being led by Him. 

3 Thoughts For How To Think When Pursuing Dreams—Pursuing dreams requires work and a whole lotta brave. Many people say they want a certain dream, but they don’t work toward achieving it. #dreams #tellhisstory Click To Tweet
Hands typing on a laptop . . . visual for me pursuing my writing dream

When we “dance with our Father,” we’re in the perfect place for working toward our dreams. We hold our vision of our dream toward Him with open hands. When we invite Him into the process, then we can walk out the journey with His peace. 

I’ve yet to meet someone whose dream came true exactly as they originally imagined it. Many of us have had to watch the dream we envisioned die so God could resurrect His perfect vision for it and for us.  When our dreams don’t come true, we need to get honest with our Father and listen to Him. An open heart and yielded spirit enables us to walk through the disappointment.

Red flowers, a reminder that there is beauty in the process of pursuing dreams

When we yield our vision—our hearts—to Him, He can accomplish great things through our efforts and our lives. And isn’t that what we most want anyway?

What about you? Are you brave enough to share one of your dreams here? What’s one lesson you’ve learned as you have worked toward achieving a dream?

***Please forgive the upheaval with the Tell His Story linkup over the past month. I’ve been beyond grateful Lisa Jordan stepped in to keep things running while I took care of family matters. This month, I’m hosting the linkup this week and next week. Lisa will take her normal fourth Tuesday of the month to get us back on track. I so appreciate your patience and sticking with us during this crazy summer!

Most weeks, I link up with Grace and Truth, Anita Ojeda, Instaencouragements, and sometimes Let’s Have Coffee. Come join and read more encouraging posts!

Each week we gather here as storytellers, word weavers, and encouragers to make His name known. Our story is God’s story and this small corner of the blogging world, where we come together each Tuesday, needs you. This is a place where poetry, snapshots, prayers, and stories find a safe spot to nod in agreement that what we have to say matters. I am glad you are here and would love to have you join the #TellHisStory community. Add your own encouraging post through the link below. Spread some love by visiting your neighbor and leaving your own encouragement. Click over here to read more about the #TellHisStory community and find a button to add to your site.

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