Do You Have a Dream?
Lysa TerKeurst

"If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones…" Luke 16:10 (NLT)

Do you have a dream to do something? In my early twenties, I started and failed at five different jobs before helping start Proverbs 31 Ministries. Lately, I've been getting many emails asking how I helped start this ministry. I always wish I could reveal three well defined steps that led me to this place where I'm at today doing what I know I was made to do. But my journey was not well defined nor were there easy steps. I stumbled here.

My friend who asked me to join her in getting this ministry off the ground named it. I was with the ministry for close to four months before it occurred to me that maybe I should read Proverbs chapter 31 in the Bible. I had never done that.

I had an argument with God after reading Proverbs 31, telling Him all the reasons He had definitely called the wrong gal to be part of a ministry named after a woman who truly had it all together.

At that point in my life, I had one child who made me cry every day with feelings of being completely overwhelmed and a struggling marriage.

But God.

I love those two words when you put them together.

He makes a way where there is no way. He loves to use unlikely people so He gets all the credit for any good that comes from their frail and faulty efforts. I'm convinced He wasn't looking for the most qualified person, He was simply looking for a woman who would dare to say yes to Him.

So, how in the world did God ever grow this ministry from the tiniest seed to where it is today?

I'm convinced my job all along was never to figure out how to grow the ministry or how to run a successful ministry. My job all along was to simply be obedient to God. My job was obedience, God's job was results. That's true no matter what we're pursuing - be it a job, a spouse, a calling or a dream.

I had to be obedient to God in the small things and the big things. Some days as a woman in ministry my big job was to change diapers with a good attitude and apologize to my husband for acting so stubborn. Other days it was to have coffee with a woman and simply listen to her heart. Still other days it was to write an article that would only be read by 35 readers of our small little newsletter at the time.

You see God never let this ministry outgrow my capacity to be obedient to Him.

As I put together a team, I looked for people who had the same passion to say yes to God. As He found me and my team faithful with the little things, bigger opportunities came. It hasn't been easy and we certainly have not been found to be obedient every day, but we've been determined to never give up.

Proverbs 31 Ministries unfolded very, very slowly. This ministry has been 17 years of waking up each day, lifting up our willingness to be obedient to God that day, and simply following wherever He leads us with a "yes" heart.

If you feel a tug at your heart to pursue some sort of a dream, let it unfold slowly. And realize you can start today. Simply ask God to place that one obedience-assignment in front of you today and say yes. Who knows what could possibly start from there…

Dear Lord, no matter what the dreams are that You've placed on our hearts, may we be found obedient in the small things first. And help us to remember our job is to be obedient to You and then You will take care of the results. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Visit Lysa’s interactive website today for a list of three crucial things every woman following a dream should know…click here.

Lysa is speaking in over 40 cities this year and she’d love to meet you! To check for a city near you, click here. Next month Lysa will be in Atlanta at Charles Stanley’s church and then at the Fresh Grounded Faith conference in Seattle, WA. Click here for more information on Atlanta and here for more information on Seattle.

And if you’d like to move from just going through the motions with God to having a thriving relationship with Him, consider getting a copy of Lysa’s latest book, "Becoming More than a Good Bible Study Girl" by clicking here.

Application Steps:
If you are following a dream, keep track of the things God teaches you along the way either through a journal or another remembrance marker.

Reflections:
What are you hoping to gain by reaching your dream? If your ultimate goal is a richer relationship with God, you will never be disappointed.

Power Verses:
Proverbs 3:1-3. "My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity. Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart." (NIV)

© 2010 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.

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19 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa, I woke up and read your blog this morning. I began a new job this week teaching elementary school after being out of the classroom for 12 years to raise my children. It has been my dream to return to the classroom and God has lined up the best circumstances for me to make this move. Your reminder to take steps one at time encouraged me this morning as I face a mound of boxes to unpack in the classroom and curriculum to refamiliarize myself. I ask God to help me be obedient in the small things and trust Him for the results. I am so tempted to be overwhelmed with the big task ahead. Thank you for your encouraging devotional.

Anonymous RKetchen said...

Thanks Lisa, you're devotions are always such a blessing to me and I always pass them on to those that the Holy Spirit prompts me to.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you have a dream????

Yes I certainly do, after 4 years of studying I graduated and landed myself a very Junior position at the bank, although the rest of my friends were earning very well and were placed in positions higher then myself. I often cried to the Lord for a new job in the field that I have studied or a high salary just like my friends... Well 6 years later I finally got a promotion and I start on 01 September 2010. You see, all along the 6 year journey I had to be obedient, that obedience has brought me huge success. Jesus has granted me such favour that when I speak or even make a suggestion it gets implemented.

Sometimes we my never understand the course of our life but as long as we allow Jesus to do the navigating... be assured you headed for your destination in Godspeed. Be Blessed.

Naomi - S.A

Anonymous Jenn said...

Praise God! I needed this devotion this morning! Right now I'm in a job that gives me pure joy in some aspects (teaching special ed)...but it's not what I ultimately love doing (which is painting/teaching Art, by the way). Although, I'm sure this is where God wants me to be right now. I have no idea why, in fact, it doesn't make any sense to me, I could provide a litany of reasons as to why "I'm-not-your-gal-for the-job-God". Your devotion was so encouraging and I can feel God telling me to keep pressing in, it's exciting! Thanks-- I'm now well equipped with a huge jug of coffee and the word of the Lord--more than enough to tackle that 10 page paper I have to write.ugh.

Anonymous Elizabeth said...

This devotion was a great refocus and reminder as I continue working in a new job and hit challenges and discouragements at times with my performance along the way. He has a plan for me, and I need to walk in obedience and let Him be God. He's trustworthy, and as Chris Tomlin sings, "Our God is great than any other," so He has by back.

Blogger Megan said...

"He makes a way where there is no way. He loves to use unlikely people so He gets all the credit for any good that comes from their frail and faulty efforts."

Lysa! I so loved reading this today. The statement above reminds me of the story of Ruth which I just finished studying. God does amazing things through unlikely people. Thank you for the reminder...

I don't know what I want to be when I grow up (even though I'm 30 now)... but I'm praying for obedience to answer God's call when I get it.

Anonymous D. J. Swepston said...

Thank you Lisa! God has been prompting me to dream again, to believe for big things and to TRUST Him to bring these big things to pass. He is calling me to be more obedient so that I can more fully enjoy all His blessings! This post just helps to confirm I am hearing correctly from God!

Blogger Donna said...

Thank you Lisa so much for this timely devotional! God's time is always perfect! I'm going to pass this on to our 26 year old daughter,a single mother of a 15 month old son. She has a dream to start a bakery/cafe, which seems impossible. Thank you for sharing your story and God's word with us. Now, I can help her get started in the right direction...first step, obedience to God in the little things He places before her and then who knows...maybe that bakery business will happen:)
Thank you Lisa

Blogger nicole said...

Thank you Lisa for your words of encouragement! After a difficult week at work, where I am being treated very unfairly it has left my husband declaring I never go back and me unhappy looking for another job. Our passion as a young couple is to start a family and dive into ministry...there are just 2 years of flight school for my husband that stand in the way. My desire is to be a helper but my dreams and passions are to be creative from home. Your words blessed me beyond what I can even write here :)

Blogger Cindy said...

My dream is to get to raise my children on a full time bases- my ex husband has custody- . That is a long and messy story. Please pray for us.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the encourging words today from the devotion as well as from the comments....Praise the Lord. Cindy..My ex husband too has custody and it has been very difficult and that is my dream too. Know that I am praying for you and to never give up your dream. God has a plan for us and He will see us thru. God bless you!

Blogger proudgrits11 said...

Love it!!!
I have so many dreams and some dreams that are just seeds and I don't even know what they're growing into....
but my deepest desire is just to GO where God is! And to know Him more in the process.
I loved this part: "My job all along was to simply be obedient to God. My job was obedience, God's job was results."
That's me, every day. Sometimes my obedience is just putting a card in the mail. Sometimes it's being on my knees in prayer for a friend. Sometimes it's growing my crafting business. Sometimes it's visiting my mom.
It looks different every day....and I trust God to use it all for His glory!
Your posts are always inspiring!!! Thank you for being honest!
And I love the idea of taking one step. Awesome.

You have no idea how this devotion was the icing on the cake for me (a billboard sign) that goes along with some other blessings that could only come from HIM the past few days, in showing me that He wants me doing my dream. I asked him for a huge sign that I wouldn't miss, and this week He has showed me so many signs with this devotion speaking directly to me.

I love all of you devotion writer girls! Thank you so much for allowing God to use you.

Lee Ann

Anonymous Kelli said...

It hasn't been easy and we certainly have not been found to be obedient every day, but we've been determined to never give up.~~~~~~> THANK YOU FOR SAYING THIS...YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW MUCH THESE WORDS IN YOUR MESSAGE HAVE BLESSED AND ENCOURAGED ME!

Anonymous Danae said...

Setting out to follow that one obedience task God has set before me for my dream...

Thank you for this motivational and encouraging devotional.

Anonymous Lee said...

Lysa,

I read Proverbs 31 Ministries Daily Devotions every day. They always speak to my heart, but today it was as though you know me. I have been posting to my blog and praying for readers. You made me realize that I don't need to worry. I just need to answer God's call to write the blog and leave the success in His hands. Thank you.
Lee

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lysa,

I attended Re: New You conference this weekend. I raised my hand today! God was shaking me and yelling at me to raise my hand to confess my sins and accept Jesus. To let him into my life. I decided this weekend that I am ready for an honest relationship with God. More than just going to church on Sunday and telling my kids about the bible. I realize that they can’t have a relationship with God if I don’t. Today when you signed my book, oh how I wanted to tell you what you have done for me! Thank you for telling your story. Your story sounded very similar to my own. I struggle to have a relationship with God, because I am ashamed and can’t comprehend how God would love and forgive me. I committed such an awful sin. A sin that I have hidden from my family, friends and even my husband. I was living a plastic life as you described it. Only leaving the house when I had a smile on my face and could hide my constant battle with depression. Wanting desperately for a do over. It has been eating at me for 12 years, but God didn’t give up on me. Thank you for sharing your story and for giving me the foundation for forgiveness and healing through God.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lysa,

I attended Re: New You conference this weekend. I raised my hand today! God was shaking me and yelling at me to raise my hand to confess my sins and accept Jesus. To let him into my life. I decided this weekend that I am ready for an honest relationship with God. More than just going to church on Sunday and telling my kids about the bible. I realize that they can’t have a relationship with God if I don’t. Today when you signed my book, oh how I wanted to tell you what you have done for me! Thank you for telling your story. Your story sounded very similar to my own. I struggle to have a relationship with God, because I am ashamed and can’t comprehend how God would love and forgive me. I committed such an awful sin. A sin that I have hidden from my family, friends and even my husband. I was living a plastic life as you described it. Only leaving the house when I had a smile on my face and could hide my constant battle with depression. Wanting desperately for a do over. It has been eating at me for 12 years, but God didn’t give up on me. Thank you for sharing your story and for giving me the foundation for forgiveness and healing through God.

Blogger Sally Ferguson said...

And it still all boils down to being obedient. Somehow, we think being in the limelight is glamorous, but it puts a spotlight on the true attitudes of the heart!
Keep up the good work Lysa!

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