More than a decade ago, I was ten-year-old-baby and the world was my black canvas that I wanted to color in love. Sunshine yellow, hope in blues and greens.
I was a dreamer.
And Sara Beth Geoghegan's song was my song, . . .
"I'm a dreamer, and a thinker. I analyze everything today.
I'm a feeler and a crier, sometimes I cry 'til there is nothing left."
And Bethany Dillon's song was my song, . . .
"I am a dreamer, take me higher.
Open the sky, and start a fire.
'Cause I believe even if it's just a dream . . . "
And the world was sad, but a tear stained world can be changed and cheered with just a little bit of love.
And I was so confused of those who had grown older and jaded and had lost the dream. So confused by those who stopped loving, who stopped wanting to chase the world in deep, crimson LOVE. LOVE from Jesus.
I was scared. Scared of losing the dream. Scared of becoming the inverted one who forgot the feeling of His love burning in my soul, of becoming the one who got too comfortable and stopped reaching out . . . but only reached in. Scared of becoming just another jaded heart.
And years past. The dream grew, especially as I saw the smiles of those who just needed a little more love to keep going. And I really thought I could do it . . . save the world for Jesus. Change it . . . because if I didn't, who would?
And storms later I grew a little weathered.
And suddenly, the world isn't just looking sad. It's looking dark and evil.
Evil is quick to cloud out hope. Also, I've been learning just how incapable I am of changing anything and healing anything.
Real love is hard. Harder than I ever imagined because Love, the essence of God, is never to fail; it is to be more consistent and stronger than any pain.
And now, the twenty-one-year-old girl looks at the dream, embodied in a crumpled picture of a little, smiling girl in a summer dress, eyes shining wonder for a dying world. Great evil turns my twenty-one-year-old gaze to that trash can a few steps away to my left . . . and sometimes, evil seems much more real than hope.
But I look back and forth, from the crumpled picture of a girl with Hope in her eyes, to that trash can that promises a jaded life is a life that is more real, that can keep you safe from the aching of this world.
But then, something happens. Jesus comes, and He sits down right next to me on this wooden bench. He comes in softly and gently, and He holds out His hands. "Can I see it?" He says, looking at the picture.
I just nod and hand it to Him.
"I remember that girl. Oh my did I love her. I put joy in her eyes and let her carry a big, colorful dream. I used that little girl to bring about a little more sunshine and love in my dying, painful world."
"Oh Jesus, part of me wants to find that girl again. Part of me wants to live so untouched by the evil of this world, but You didn't even do that. You stepped right into the evil, and I just don't know. I don't know how to run into darkness without losing my Light. I don't know how to live in a way that validates the pain in the world and acknowledges the evil but still hopes and believes that Love is stronger and more real. I'm afraid I'm losing the dream, Jesus."
And He is so gentle.
"Baby girl, do you remember the end of this story?"
"Yes, Jesus. In my head, I know. I know You win and that Light is stronger than darkness and somehow Love will triumph."
"My love, when you were little, I gave you a wide dream. My dream . . . to love the world, but baby girl, I made the dream wide and vague enough by shielding you then from much of the evil of this world.
Now you are older and more grown, and I'm beginning to show you more of the dream by showing you more of My heart, and danae, My heart aches. I've let you feel it . . . just a little, because you're older and more ready now then you were then. I have let you see the places of evil because I'm trying to give you My eyes.
But My love, oh My dear love, along with My eyes, I have given you My Light. And My Light will burn victorious. And you're right, danae. Some evil will never break. Some pimps will die hell-bound, and those runaways who refuse to come Home will find the grave a horrific place, and You don't understand that now. You won't for a long time.
But trust Me with this. My LOVE and My LIGHT are stronger, and the Love I have put in you will change the places I send you. They won't necessarily change them the way you think or wish . . . but there are things you cannot see. Realms you are so unaware of . . . and darkness cannot stand the light.
Your dream is changing, My danae girl. It's becoming more focused and more real. Don't be afraid of it changing; don't trash it. I love you, dear one. I loved you then as that little girl. I love you now as the little girl you still are in My eyes. Follow me. We'll love this world together. It won't be comfortable. It won't be as pretty as you thought at age ten. It will give you scars like it gave me, but I promise I will never leave you in the process. You're not a ten year old anymore, danae, but I have given you an innocence and a child's heart that I have called you to use to love this world with Truth and Grace.
The dream is not the goal. Follow Me, my Love. And I will lead you into Loving, into filling this world with more of My Light."
And tears slide down my cheeks. I slowly nod.
Because He is gentle to handle me when I want to give up.
Because it hurts to love but to be loved makes the hurt bearable and worth it.
Because He takes the picture of me, of the girl I want to go back to . . . the girl who lived innocently, unaware of evil. But yet He takes that picture and holds it near His heart, and He gives me a new picture of a twenty-one year old, and she looks so different, but He still painted Hope in her eyes . . . and she's still smiling.
Because Light will always be greater than darkness.
I will remain a Lover.
My dreaming may not look like my ten year old dreaming.
But I will remain true to Loving this world because someday Love will be the only One standing.
Because Love really makes a difference because Jesus really makes a difference.
I refuse. Somehow, I refuse to be jaded.
Somehow I refuse to be discouraged by an evil that WILL LOSE in the end.
Somehow I refuse to let darkness cause me to forget the power and brilliance of YHWH's LIGHT.
But only by the power and blood and promise of Jesus Christ.
I write these words so unsure of what this looks like in my life, so afraid of becoming calloused.
So Jesus? Please. Help me to live into these words.
Help me to live into You, into Your promises and Love and Light.
You didn't give up on this world.
Help me not to give up on You. Please forgive me for each time I have when I've believed the lie that things are hopeless.
Please, please forgive me.
Thank You for sitting by me today, for speaking truth and life.
Thank You for giving me one of Your dreams.
I love You.