What we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.
Missing the dreaming heart of God our Father robs us of so much. And His dreams are written in large letters in the Scriptures, from Genesis to Revelation. We see His dreaming heart beating loudly, clearly, and consistently, always looking for a way to take root in our hearts.
We will find so many answers to life’s questions by dreaming together with Papa, questions like:
- Why am I here? (Your heavenly Father dreamed about you before time began!)
- What is happening in my world? (Papa’s children make bad choices, and the world we see is the result. But the full reconciliation of all things is promised in Christ, and is the dream of our Father!)
- What does God have in store for me? (Only good, all your days! He dreams about your best.)
- What should I focus my life on? (Following Jesus, being His disciple, serving others, and enjoying the life He gives you. He can see you walking in the fullness of all He has for you, and He patiently leads you in this.)
- How can I know the will of God? (By first having your heart and life fully devoted to Him! This is His central dream, the thing that occupies His attention at all times.)
- How can I know the call God has on me? (The more you learn His voice, heart, and dreams, the more you discern His path, which turns out to be something you are thrilled to pursue. Just as Jesus fulfilled Papa’s dreams by always being about His Father’s business.)
- What kind of relationships should I be building? (Ones where freedom, integrity, and joy exist.)
- Why are some things not working in my life? (You might need to adjust what you’re focused on, and how you schedule the priorities of life. Papa is happy to give us this wisdom, each and every day.)
- How can I experience greater fruitfulness, success, and accomplishment? (By learning His ways, remaining in a constant state of nearness to Him, and by learning His heart of generosity and service.)
- How can I find meaning and joy in my life? (By taking stock of your current situation and focusing on “the main thing” of your life. He has put dreams in your heart; what are they?)
And many others.
Over the next however many blog posts it takes I’ll do my level best to let His great, merciful, patient, dreaming heart intrude into our thinking, and hopefully, challenge our hearts to pursue better, nobler, and more intentional living, getting us on a path to answer the big questions we want answers to. Let’s see how I do.
To start with, what is a dream? According to Merriam Webster’s it’s “a strongly desired goal or purpose,” “something notable for its beauty, excellence, or enjoyable quality,” and “something that fully satisfies a wish.” What are Papa’s dreams? What’s on His heart and mind?
I am proposing that Papa’s dreams are on display, fully visible for all to see, in our Bibles, and, He earnestly desires us to be both affected and helped by them. Affected and helped. First we learn His dreams, and start to feel them affect our own dreams and desires. We find ourselves swayed and smitten by Him; we are irresistibly drawn in to learn more, and dream more – with Him. His dreams are so good! Then they help us by bringing clarity, focus, and purpose to our lives, so that more and more, over time, we walk in harmony with Him, in a growingly deliberate, joyful, and intentional way.
I propose that learning His dreams and feeling His heart will affect us to the point where we gladly and hungrily make adjustments to our daily activity and daily agendas. We will then find ourselves actively pursuing the dreams we’ve now dreamed in harmony with His own rich, revealed, and understandable dream life.
To get there, to get into the place where we can hear His heart, see His dreams, and co-imagine this world under the strong and persuasive influence of His love, we must first attack the language problem we face. We need to do that, you see, because what we’ve got here is a failure to communicate. Meaning, it’s easy to miss the heart of Papa God in Scripture. The root of this problem lies in the way our Bibles get translated. We task our scholars to be exact in translating syntax, tense, grammar, etc. It’s a technically precise, excruciating task we ask them to do.
Now don’t get me wrong, this is great! This is needful. And precise, technically exact translations of the Bible are good in their place and for their reasons. (To be clear, this is always where we start!) But I’d like to suggest that the work we charge our scholars with comes with risk. It’s the risk of falling short of communicating the heart and intention and good will of the Person Whose book it is. It’s His heart that we’re after. A good son not only does what his dad says, over time he learns the intent and heart behind what he’s told to do, and begins to proactively think ahead, planning, knowing as he does what his dad is all about. He knows what his dad’s aims are. He’s learning to think like his dad. This is the difference between a mature, engaged, focused son, and an immature, disengaged, distracted son. As in the natural, so in the spiritual. It’s our heavenly Father’s heartbeat, dream life, hopes, expectations, and vision for us and for our world that we want to find ourselves pursuing. We want to feel His heart towards our own lives, the lives of others, our relationships, and the world at large, and then do concrete things that fulfill the desires of His heart. We are not even close to being satisfied with having a merely “Biblical” view of things, as good as that that is; we must have His heart and His dreams! This is our pursuit, and this is our “one thing”! Let’s pursue Him with all we’ve got. Let’s pursue the dreams of God our Father.
Next: Papa’s Big Heart Discipleship Project – His Dream Life On Display