I sometimes daydream of being a singer. My accolades include singing at my high school graduation to an arena of familiar onlookers alongside my best friend. We cleverly changed the words to a well-known country song, as we thought would best fit our well-lived high school experiences. We cried through our homemade written lyrics and crooned about leaving our small town Texas stage.
As the pomp and circumstance ended, a family member came up and jokingly said, “Don’t quit your day job.” You see, one detail I failed to mention is that I am not really much of a singer. I probably didn’t sing one note on pitch that day. More than singing ability, I had a very strong will and a tryout for the occasion in my principal’s office; who also happened to be my neighbor. So as the luck of a small town would have it, I was the graduation singer.
The most ironic part about this story of misplaced talent, is that my graduation cap gleamed with the word “Nashville” written in sparkling pink letters made from puff paint. (This was before Pinterest. That is just pure creativity, people.) I was self aware enough to know that I could not sing worthy of a Nashville stage, but I was vulnerable enough to share my seemingly unrealistic daydream with my corner of the world in reckless abandonment.
This, my friends, can be captured in the quote, “Doing something is better than doing nothing.” We did something that day. We made memories for a lifetime.
In hindsight, I now see clearly the reason this daydream was bubbling up in my heart. I would one day marry a music man with ridiculous talent. His day job is music, and quitting isn’t an option when you are made for it. All these years after meeting him, I can rationalize the will of my 18-year-old heart somehow knowing its purpose long before I actually knew why.
Oftentimes, we receive the strength for a desire or purpose long before we receive the full understanding of the purpose. I think if we knew the whole story right from the start, we would cower back down to our version of comfort and “risk” would become a four-letter word. Instead, my advice is to walk forward towards the dream with tenacity while wearing your rose colored glasses and filtering the commentary of the ‘realist’.
Although, my stage will never be performing songs (you’re welcome), my stage is just as vital. The role of supporting the performer by moving across the country to watch them climb an invisible ladder, sometimes with missing rungs and people kicking each other off along the way, can be just as difficult. My stage looks different than I thought it would, but the dreams I have serve as the fuel to move ahead on the not so glamorous days. (Unlike the glamour of graduation day with the glittery letters on my head.)
My heart has come to an understanding. The platforms from which we live our dreams are just as important as the dreams themselves. That has to be realized for the dream to be fully developed in your life. Sometimes that takes surrender. Sometimes that takes flexibility. Sometimes that takes laying down our pride. Every time that takes risk.
This blog is another daydream. I am often told I am a good talker, to which I credit all the “Needs to Control Talking” marks on my report card in elementary school. I am working on my economy of words in everyday life. Those closest to me tell me to write a book. Most likely because I have so many details to share about everything. I may really write a book someday, but today, this is my stage. Today, this is my daydream. I may have critics. I most certainly won’t perfect every thought or word, but I won’t quit.
Find your passions. Find your platform. Smile at the critics. Never quit your daydream. Just be open to the version of the dream that God allows and always go what that. His story is the final cut version, which is so much better than our first sketch.