by Larry L. Carter B.S., M.C.M., and President of GLCC
Dreams are very personal, powerful and precious.
Dreams are personal in that they seem uniquely formed in your deepest part-midway between mind and heart.
Dreams are powerful in that they, in large part, shape your present and your future.
Dreams are precious in that they come as a gift, a gift from God.
The Importance of Dreams
Obviously, I’m not talking about those nightly occurrences that come to entertain us while we sleep. I’m talking about an awareness of potential and purpose which is instilled in each of us at an early age.
I believe that God gives each of us a sense of who we are and what we can become. We are all here on planet earth for a reason. And that reason is larger than the confines of living to serve and please one’s self.
The dream that God places in our minds and hearts calls out the best of ourselves in the pursuit of that which can bless and enrich others. This dream can come as a vision or a persistent voice that tells us we have what others need. It reminds us that our significance comes not from what others think about us, but from what God has planned for us. It assures us at the core of our being we are specially designed for such a time and place as this.
Do Your Dreams Have Room to Grow?
For a blessed few, that dream is given room to grow. Their life situation is such that the promise of significance is encouraged and developed. For most others, life seems to do its worst in destroying that dream…that “nonsense” which can only lead to disappointment and heartache. Dreams do seem harder to come by these days.
I remember when I was a kid, some 40 years ago, playing on a Little League baseball team. One of the things our coach did was host a picnic for the team at the beginning of the season. After eating hot dogs and burgers he sat us all down for a pep talk. The first thing he did was to ask us a question. He asked, “How many of you have a dream to one day play in the Major Leagues?”
Almost every hand shot up. Every kid with his hand up believed he could do it. You could see it in their eyes. He then told us, “If that is to happen, that dream begins now!”
I was so inspired by that challenge-all of us were-that we practiced and played so hard we became the best team around.
Some 25 years later I became a Little League coach. I brought all the kids together at the beginning of the season to give them a pep talk. The same talk my coach had given me. So I asked my team the same question, “How many of you have a dream to one day play in the Major Leagues?”
Not one hand was raised. Not one kid believed he could do it. You could see in their eyes. I was speechless. The rest of my talk was meaningless if there was no dream so I said, “Really? Nobody? Well, go get your gloves and lets throw some.”
I thought about that day for a long time.
What had happened in the 25 years since I was kid?
What had come into their lives to steal their dreams?
What had convinced them that they would never be more than what they were?
Keeping Dreams Alive
Certainly, the insidious and destructive notion that we are not creations of God but mere accidents of nature has had an effect. If we’re mere products of evolution-if mere machines made of chemical reactions and neural responses-if we are just who we are at birth, DNA determined people whose futures are already locked and loaded-then where do dreams fit in? Where do they come from?
But what else has come into our children’s world to destroy dreams and ruin hope? I think it’s the sheer number of voices that echo Satan’s lie-“not good enough, not smart enough, not talented enough, not pretty enough. You never were and never will be.”
Parents , friends and teachers join the refrain, some with a desire to hurt and harm, but most with a desire to help and humble. Unwittingly, they come to convince their children to settle for a life which is safe and secure. To know their limits and live within them. To ignore the Voice which calls them beyond what they are to what they could be. Rather than enhance that Voice of dreams, rather than encourage their children toward their incredible potential, they drown out the Voice of hope with the voice of reason.
Living out your dream is a luxury you can’t afford. As a result, we have a generation full of young people who choose careers and life styles which offer the least resistance, yet provide the most money. In a world of limited futures and insurmountable problems their survival depends on it. At least, so they think.
GLCC Keeps Students Dreams Alive
We at GLCC don’t believe that. Having a dream which comes from God should never be ignored or downplayed. We do everything we can to encourage our students to clarify, develop and then follow their dreams. We help them focus on the dream giving God of the possible. As a result, we are helping to produce confident and hope filled students who know that God has called them to better things. Life is more than survival. Life is allowing our God, “who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think”, to shape and direct us according to His dream for us.
We have graduates all around the world who are living out their God given dreams in service to Him. From Hungary to the Philippines, from the city to the country, from the school yard to the boardroom-we are proud of what our graduates are doing in response to the leading of God.
Ernest Campbell wrote powerfully,
“The man to be pitied is the man who believes in everything just a little bit, the miscellaneous man who has never brought the tattered fragments of his life under the command of a single voice, or gathered his abilities around a single passion.”
We want our students to let that single voice be the Voice of God. We want them to have that passion which finds its source in the very heart of God. We want them to fulfill God’s dream for their lives.
Discover More about GLCC
Greg Stauffer, VP of Enrollment Management (On Campus)
Phone: (517) 321-0242 ext. 230
Jon Jakubowski, Director of Online and Adult Classes
Phone: 517-321-0242, ext 249
We can’t wait to hear from you!
This article originally appeared in Great Lakes Christian College newsletter, The Key, May 2001 edition. It was written by Larry L. Carter B.S., M.C.M., and president of GLCC.