1.  Never give up.  Your dream may take longer than you ever dreamed it would.  There are things that God is doing behind the scenes to grow you and make you and these things take time and come disguised as trials and “roll your sleeves up work”.  God knows the road you are walking and the destination.  He is the map maker and the author of your life.  Follow the compass of His guiding and never give up.

My dream has been to preach.  I got saved when i was 16 and thought that was EVERYONE’S dream.  I wanted to communicate the good news of Jesus to everyone and anyone.  one on one, in groups, up the front.  whatever and however.  i wanted to know God and make Him known.  in 2004 i was fortunate to do a preaching course at our church, with the drawcard that we would be sent out to itinerate as part of the course fulfilments.  And then i got pregnant.  i remember driving home from church one night, after hearing about the adventures that the other course graduates, non-pregnant men, were having and feeling discouraged and disappointed.  I clearly heard God say “i made you a woman.”  like duh?  but then i let that sink into my heart.  God knew the road i was walking on.  He knew and created me.  He knew i was a woman and would be a mother and pregnant.  I didn’t have to follow the same road as the other people around me.  He had a specific tailor made designed road for me to walk on.  He is the dream giver and the dream fulfiller.

2.  Learn on the way.  Take the opportunity to learn for everybody and everything on the way.  Difficult people in the workplace.  Family crisis.  Rejections.   Storms.  They are all teachers that give us wisdom and skills that we would never learn otherwise.   Make the most of every moment.

As a preacher moments can become stories, analogies.  I can learn how people communicate, how people learn, how people understand.  I can learn how to wrap words around a concept.  I often listen to message twice, once for content and then once for crafting.  I am always learning.  I am learning most of all how a very real God meets us in very real situations.  I am learning to pastor people as i am pastored and as God outworks things in my own life.  It connects me to God and connects me to people.

3.  Serve someone else’s dream.  As you serve you learn.  As you serve you grow.  As you serve you develop character and work ethic that will take you a long way into living your own dream.  Don’t sit back and wait for it all to fall into your lap but develop credibility with God and with others by living for the dream now by serving someone else’s dream.

If i want an opportunity, if i want my moment, then i must be faithful with other peoples dreams and serve where the need is.  sometimes this means working outside my gifting, or doing something not glamorous or not noticed.  but it develops credibility with people that can open doors.  its NOT about me.  its about what God is doing in His church, His body.  together we work and serve and live.  God holds the key to the promotion and to your dream but He has created His body for a reason.  Be involved and connected.

4.  Be who the dream needs you to be. Character matters.   Character will keep you in your dream.  Develop consistent integrity.  Be prepared to go the right way and the long way and the wise way.  Because it counts and it has reward.

Now i’m not talking about perfection here, but reality is that if you want to lead you need to have integrity and character.  don’t expect talent to take you everywhere.  talent with no character is no good.  i believe God will hold the door closed if we don’t have the capacity to live and sustain the dream. because the dream really isn’t about you – its about people being drawn to God and walking with Him.  i have seen the fall out from when leaders buckle under pressure and don’t have the character to sustain the calling.  i don’t want that to be my legacy.  my prayer is that God will continue to give me His wisdom and grace and i humble myself to make right choices that honour Him and encourage others.

5.  Let the dream grow.  your dream might look a bit fuzzy around the edges… that’s okay.  Our dreams often grow as we live, serve and experience life.  Position yourself in life to explore and expand your capacity.

As i said, when i got saved all i knew was that i wanted to preach.  today i have the priv of speaking at our church a few times a year and at our women’s conf.  i get to service lead and together with my husband we lead a housegroup.  i lead a mums group and next year will be working closely with a group of young adults in a “gap year” course.  knowing God and making Him known.  i am living out my dream.  my dream has evolved as God has revealed more of the picture and as i have grown and walked with Him.