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Racing Toward Your Dream
God has placed special gifts, talents, and specific dreams inside each one of us; things He knows not only will define who we are, but also help us reach our full potential in life. As we look ahead to the future, let's lay hold of those dreams and start pressing toward the finish line!

Recently I was talking to a friend of mine who shared a motivating story about pursuing dreams. He told me that not too long ago, he found himself in the hospital facing a life-or-death situation regarding his health. While contemplating all of the serious “what ifs” that were going through his mind at the time, he remembers agonizing the most over one particular thought—the fact that while he was pleased with his life’s accomplishments, he still had one burning desire which, up to that point, he had not yet pursued.

As he shared his story with me, I couldn’t help but think about some of the desires and aspirations the Lord has put on the inside of me. Things I’ve wanted or dreamed about doing for years—things I know I am fully capable of doing—but up to this point, are things I still have not pursued.

My friend mentioned that he had always wanted to race cars; in fact, auto racing had been a desire for most of his life. But now faced with the possibility of never being able to step out and experience this particular desire of his heart, it was his only regret and something he vowed to change if given the chance.

It got me thinking about some of my own dreams—one of which is public speaking. Getting up in front of a large group of people may cause some folks to become a bit queasy, but not me. It’s something I’ve wanted to do ever since I was a junior in high school. I am also an actor, so I’ve had many opportunities to perform or speak in front of audiences and cameras for more than 20 years. But to experience a career as a full-time speaker...that remains one of my foremost dreams.

Well, my friend was given another chance. I don’t know all of the details regarding his health challenges, but between the grace of God and the hospital staff, he was made well and eventually regained his health. And do you know one of the first things he did? That’s right, he made some changes, refocused his priorities, and began to step out and pursue the true desire of his heart.

He never wanted to experience the feeling of regret again.

Neither do I.

So…several years after of placing my dream on the shelf, I found myself at least thinking much more about my desire to speak professionally. I even pulled out a couple of my favorite books on the topic. I admit it’s not a giant leap forward, but it’s a start…and sometimes that’s all it takes, right?

What are some of those deep-seated desires in your life? What are those things you think about at night while lying in bed? We all have them. I also believe each one of us has the courage and faith to attain them.  It’s simply a matter of taking that first step.

We all know that life is short and that our time on this earth is limited, but nothing seems to remind us of that fact like the unfortunate occurrences of health challenges, devastating storms, or unexpected accidents, etc. Why does it always seem to take one of these adverse calamities to pull ourselves out of our daily, mindless routine and reconsider the path we are on and what is most important to us and to our families?

God has placed special gifts, talents, and yes, specific dreams inside each one of us; things He knows not only will define who we are, but also help us reach our full potential in life. Everyone has things they want to do, and one person’s dream is no more important or spiritual than anyone else’s. It’s not about judging the dream; it’s about the effort made to attain it! I don’t think God wants us to set our gifts, talents, and dreams on the shelf and never look at them again because we are so busy. We do nothing but limit ourselves if we do.  Consider the following scriptures:

Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.
(Psalm 37:4 NKJV)

The Lord…delights in every detail of their lives. Though they may stumble, they will never fall, for the Lord holds them by the hand.
(Psalm 37:23-24 NLT)

You may have some reservations about moving forward, but never forget that you are not alone. God will always be there, holding your hand and guiding your steps. He does care about the details of your life!

My friend got out of the hospital and decided life was too short to sit in the bleachers and postpone his dream any longer. He counted the cost (Luke 14:28), took the necessary steps, and soon found himself behind the wheel of his very own race car. Not long after, he won his first race. His eyes swelled a bit as he told me it was a life-changing moment and something he will never forget for as long as he lives.

No regrets. That’s the way to live the life God has given you. But to do so, procrastination needs to be kicked to the curb! Life is a gift from God and we need to squeeze as much out of it as possible…and the sooner we begin, the better.

There is a Yiddish proverb that says, “A man is not old until his regrets take the place of his dreams.” I think the best way to prevent regret from creeping in (other than to never grow old!) is to constantly remind ourselves of those things we yearn to do or accomplish in life, and then take a step or two each day (even if they are baby steps) in an effort to move closer to the finish line.

Thanks to my friend’s encouraging story, I took one of my own dreams down from the shelf, dusted it off, and started holding it again. It felt good. Where will I go from here? I’m not sure, but things are definitely stirring on the inside of me again. Who knows, maybe by this time next year, I’ll be speaking to you somehow instead of writing :)

“It takes a lot of courage to show your dreams to someone else. ”
- Erma Bombeck

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”
- C.S. Lewis

What has the Lord planted in your heart? Is there something you believe He wants you to do or accomplish in this new year? Are there any dreams that you have already fulfilled? Any others you are working on? We have set up a special section on the cfaith Facebook page for you to share your dreams and aspirations with others. Check it out today! You can post your own message and also read about what others are doing to fulfill their dreams :)

As we look ahead to a future that is full of promise and potential, I encourage you to consider the path you are on and make any changes you feel are important or necessary in your life. It’s time to get off the sideline and into the game, and today is a perfect day to begin!

The effectiveness of our ministry outreach would not be possible without your ongoing prayers and generous support. So thank you for standing with us and for supporting the worldwide ministry efforts of cfaith. Together we are making a difference and touching hearts in more than 200 countries every month!

As we look forward to our years ahead, I encourage you to dream big and run your race in such a way that you will obtain the prize God has for you! (1 Cor. 9:24).

Let's lay hold of our dreams together,

Jeff Litfin

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