All this talk about believing in your dreams, living the impossible, and expecting greatness, and… um, where is the reality? Well the truth of the matter is that you have to take on this belief and mind-set and follow through on some pretty tangible action. Belief and expectation are not abstract ideas. They are action words. Belief, or faith as some people understand it, is not what it is until action accompanies it. In many aspects, what you do shows the inner core of what you believe.
Living in the impossible, living your dreams, living with great expectations takes great effort in a world of mediocrity and complacency. I often think of people like Rick Warren, Oprah Winfrey, and Bill Gates. Do I really think that they sat around and just daydreamed of all the things that wanted to be and all of a sudden it just appeared. I don’t think so. I think of them having many late nights of strategy and planning. Maybe there were some nights they cried because their closest friends and family laughed or told them that what they wanted to do was impossible. They had to find strength from somewhere to be the rare successful jewels our generation can look up to and admire. Of course they aren’t perfect. That is not my point. But how many African American women billionaires do you know? I personally know zero. How in the world did she get there? I am sure she had to combat not only societal limitations for “people like her,” but she also had to fight her own thoughts about herself formed by negative words spoken to her by family members, teachers, or others in leadership. She had to fight the “I can’ts” and the “it’s too hards” or the “I’m sacreds” every day.
To think of achieving your personal level of success (and I am not only speaking of money, but a level of contentment that you are doing what you were meant to do, that you are using the optimum of your potential), amidst a majority of people who live in the past and in regret, one would have to have some pretty rock hard beliefs and faith. This level of faith and believing could not be internal only. They would have to be such a part of your fabric that you behave in conjunction with these life-altering beliefs.
So here’s where I ask again what do you believe? What is the root of what you chose to do today? Does it match the dreams and hopes you have for yourself? If you want to travel the world, are you learning new languages? If you want to be a inspiring author, are you good with words? If you want to retire at 45, do you at least have a 401k? Take time to discover your dreams, and then make steps to achieve them. You don’t have to give into what the majority around you does. You don’t have to live in regret. But you do have to fight.
Surrounding yourself with positive, encouraging, upwardly mobile people is a really helpful thing to do. Another is to evaluate your weaknesses and seek to improve them. But the ultimate thing is to find out from God what you were originally created to do. He is your life’s tech support. He can set you back to your default. A lot of things get us off the course of purpose and fulfillment, but getting that diagnostic, that defrag and systems check from the ultimate IT department can set you on the right path of fulfilling your purpose and dreams.
“The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn’t be able to tackle” (Matthew 17:20, The Message).
“What good is it…if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions?…faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless” (James 2:14-17, New Living Translation).