Dream Living

There are so many illusions out there in the world that allow us to believe our dream life is something to always strive for and almost never achieve to the fullest. I am here to tell you that is a lie. I am often told that my husband and I are “living the dream”. I have never stopped to think about it until recently when my co-worker was telling me how I have “the life.” I have a husband who loves me. A career that I like doing. A family who cares. A community of friends that I can lean on. I am not trying to brag, these are legitimately the things she listed off. Things that I take for granted every single day. These beautiful, magnificent things that I am used to living with. When told this, I sat there silent. I didn’t know what to say. Thank you? But my response that I gave was different than I would have imagined. I told her, “I have worked very hard for this life.” This led to a conversation on how I prayed for my future husband, I make an effort to meet with people to build the community around me, and my husband and I budget our money so we can do fun things together. My life was not handed to me, I have worked for it, because I have worked for God.

In today’s culture, “the dream” is owning a home, having a nice car, maybe a boat to take on the water, and kids to share the dream with. I want to tell you something, my husband and I do not own a home. We do not own super nice things. Because of my doing, we are in major school loan debt. Our life is not even close to what perfection may look like to others. But I somehow feel we are living a life that we were meant to live, and that right there is the ultimate dream.

I am going to tell you how I am living my dream lifestyle. This will be a little different than what you read in Cosmo or Forbes, but I want to give you an understanding on how I see the dream lifestyle different than what our society wants us to believe. Lifestyle dreams can be different, but I am here to tell you that it is not about the things you have, but the things you work for.

1.Find fulfillment in God

I am putting this number 1 on the list. This is THE most important thing when finding your dream. Cliché as it is, money will not buy you happiness and neither will anything else. A husband. A family. A job. The ultimate way to fill any gap you have in your life is giving it to God. He will be the ultimate fulfillment, and soon the way you wanted to see your dream life will change, because it will be God’s plan instead of your own.

Recently, I had a career change. Many circumstances led up to it, but to be pretty frank, I was devastated. I was working toward what I have always wanted to do. I wanted to be working in ministry, at a church, as a Women’s Director. That is exactly what I was doing. But somehow, I felt as if I was a puzzle piece to the wrong puzzle, but some little kid was trying to pound me into the picture even though I did not belong there. I prayed for awhile and it led to me stepping down from the position. After I left, I went home and cried. A lot. Not that I left the job, but because I felt lost. I had thought this was my life purpose. My college degree said so. Other people said so. But how come it didn’t work out? I felt empty. I needed to find fulfillment in what God’s plan was for me and not only in the plan, but in God himself. I had to surrender what I thought my purpose was and let God fill the gap. This soon changed my outlook on life. I found that a job should not be the main thing that fills my life.

I think the reason people are always striving for more is because they are not fully satisfied with their life which then leads to insecurity. People believe that I am living the dream BECAUSE I have a husband, get to travel and have a good group of friends. But I am living the dream because I have intimacy with God and that is my ultimate security for my life. I trust him with his plan. Yes, I do have all of those things, but I could always want more. No matter where you are in life, there can always be a desire for more and more and more. Where does it stop? It is when you are content with where God has you. So whether you are single and you are insecure about all your friends getting married or you are not in the career you thought you wanted or whatever it may be, I encourage you to find full intimacy with God first and foremost and insecurity and emptiness will be filled.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

2. Build Community

This is also very important, this is on the top of my list because I am a social butterfly, but it may be at the bottom of others. However, I believe wherever it is, it needs to be on the list.

Having a community that listens and understands helps you achieve the dream worth living. I hear quite often that it is hard to find a good community to be a part of. And it is! It is very hard sometimes. I also want to ask you this, how hard are you working to find this community? The majority of people that complain about not having a good community are the ones that think people will just show up in their lives without having to do anything. That will not happen.

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Community is built by effort. It happens by joining bible studies, reaching out to co-workers, asking people to coffee, and also making sure that your community is doing ok. All of the friendships I have lost is due to lack of communication and giving up on reaching out to one another. I have lost contact with people because it was my fault. I got busy and I forgot that people out in the world needed to hear from me. I have also lost friendships because I kept reaching out to them with nothing back. I feel community is being lost because people are so self-absorbed in their own day to day lives that they do not think putting in effort and time for someone else is worth it. That is wrong! It is totally worth it! Yes, you have to genuinely take time out of your own life to listen to someone else, but the result of that is such a blessing. As Christians, community is what we are called to be a part of, but just like our relationship with God, community takes hard work and giving away ourselves to have it. Once you learn how to achieve a good community, this will just add so much fulfillment that your life will feel like a dream!

3. BUDGET!

My husband and I love to go places. A lot. When we decide we want to take another trip somewhere, we give up something else. For example, my friends wedding is coming up in September back in my home town. I miss being in the mountains and I want to make a weekend out of it. There is only one major hotel up there so staying in a room can be pretty pricey. I told my husband that I wanted to book the room so at least we know we have it and then we can always cancel it if we do not have the finances to stay for the weekend. Knowing that I have a weekend that I want to take, I give up other things that I usually spend money on. Target runs. Eating out. Going to see movies. etc. All of this stuff adds up and allows us to spend money on a weekend getaway.

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There is a lie out there that having a dream life is having it all. But, I do not need it all or even want it all. I absolutely love to go places, but we have given up other things so we could do so. Many of our friends own homes but do not travel. Some have many kids but do not own a home because they wanted a family right away. Having the dream life is giving up some things to allow yourself to finance for others. You just need to ask yourself, what do I absolutely want and what is something I can give up and I won’t miss?

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4. Choose Optimism

With a positive outlook on life, its hard to see your life other than a dream. Our lives were completely gifted to us and in turn we use it to further the kingdom of God. Yes, there will be pain, sorrow, laughs and love. I do not deny that there is a lot of hurt in our lives and in the world. Do we tend to dwell on the hurt and pain? Dwelling on bad things that have happened to us allow us to not live our present lives to our full potential.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

The best thing you can do to start living your dream life is move forward from the past and choose to start living a life of positivity. Will you ever believe you are living the best life you can if you are also focusing on the bad? Probably not.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” -Romans 8:28

5. Pray

Of course I had to add this to the list! Prayer is so important for dream living. Praying allows me to feel peace at where I am at and comfort in times of the storm.

“For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.  I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church,which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.” Ephesians 1:15-23

Here, Paul is praying for his people. That they see and know the hope God has called us too and see the riches of his power. This is a great example of a prayer we can have for ourselves. I pray that I am able to see the riches of God and that he will grant me wisdom so I can know him better which allows me to see my life in a different light.

Prayer is so important to allow the Spirit intervene and allow you to see the riches in your life. This also helps you grow a closer intimacy with God that relates back to point number 1. I have also continuously prayed for my future husband before I got married, now I pray for him daily. I pray for my community, and we pray over our finances. This allows me to give everything God has provided back to him so it is in his ultimate control.

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I pray and hope that this helps put a different perspective on having your dream life. That your dream life is not about the things you have, but the what you work toward.

I would love to hear your comments on this topic!

-Marie the Adventurous Creative Sister

 

 

3 thoughts on “Dream Living”

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