Yesterday my post was the first part of “Making Your Dreams Come True”. Let me pick up where I left off.
First, to make our dreams come true:
1. Ask Consistently
(v. 7) “Ask, and it will be given to you.”
Ask God for it. Of course when we ask for something we need to ask ourselves this question: “What are my motives for this request?” We need to also ask ourselves: Am I acting in a way that is consistent with what I’m asking for? Whether it is a dream of doing something great for God or a personal dream we have we must ask consistently with whatever our request is.
If I pray, “Lord, please help me realize my financial,” but I have no budget, or I buy whatever I want whenever I want it, my prayers become less effective.
Our actions show what we’re really asking for.
It doesn’t work that way. When we pray, we need to ask in a consistent manner. We need to make sure our actions are consistent with our prayers. When you do good things happen!
If our motives and actions are not consistent with what we’re asking for, what’s the solution? Stop asking? NO, absolutely not. The solution is to start acting in ways that are consistent with what we really want.
Think about what’s on your prayer list now and ask yourself, “What can I do that is consistent with this request?”
Let me give you a personal example of how this has worked in my life. I was struggling with resentment toward someone. We had been friends for many years, but had a disagreement, and there was a long period of silence between the two of us. Of course, I was right and he was wrong–that’s the way it always seems, isn’t it? But eventually I began to pray, “Lord, I don’t want to be a slave to resentment, and I don’t want a friendship to go down the tubes, so please heal this relationship.” And then I asked myself, “What action can I take that is consistent with this prayer?” So, I sent him a book. (It wasn’t “How To Win Friends and Influence People” … that would not have been very subtle.) I sent him a book about football, because like all red-blooded American men he is a football fan. Along with the book I sent a note that said, “Hope you enjoy the book and I hope you’re doing fine.” Amazingly, my resentment went away. Later, he called to thank me for the book, we cleared the air between us, and everything worked out well.
This makes your prayers more powerful. When you pray for something, be ready to take actions that are consistent with what you’re asking for. When we do we place ourselves in the right place at the right time for God to work amazing things in our life.
To make your dreams come true, ask consistently.
Second, to make our dreams come true we must…
2. SEEK PERSISTENTLY
(v. 7) “Seek and you will find.”
As a girl one of my daughters had trouble locating things. Important things, like schoolbooks and ballet shoes. This scene happened more than once: It’s Sunday morning and time to leave for church, and she has one shoe on. I’d say, “Where’s your other shoe?” She’d say, “I don’t know, I can’t find it.” You would think, since we tend to take off both shoes at once, that the second shoe would be found near the first one. But it doesn’t work that way. I would ask her, “Where did you take your shoes off?” and she usually had the same answer: “I took them off my feet.” So, we would look for the lost shoe until we found it. It usually turned up in the oddest places — on a bookshelf, behind the refrigerator, or in between the cushions of the couch. I didn’t get mad at her for misplacing things (I couldn’t; I was the same way then – OK, I’m pretty much still the same way!), but I had a rule: she had to keep looking until she found it. She couldn’t give up. She couldn’t sit on the couch and do nothing while her mom looked for it. In the process, she learned two things. One, to put both shoes together when she took them off; and two, to seek persistently for whatever it is she’s looking for.
Mel Fisher is a treasure hunter. In the 1960’s he began diving off the coast of Florida in search of a priceless treasure from a Spanish fleet that had sunk there in the 17th century. For more than 16 years he searched, day-in, day-out. Some of his team members gave up and quit. Some of his investors lost faith in him. Still, he kept seeking.
Finally, on July 20, 1985 he found what he was looking for — the Spanish galleon Atocha, containing a treasure worth hundreds of millions of dollars. It took more than 6000 days of persistent seeking, but he finally found it.
Jesus says, “If you want something, look for it. And keep looking until you find it.”
Whatever you are dreaming of may not happen on the first try, or the second, or the third. But keep seeking. Keep looking for a way to make it happen, and if it is a worthy goal it will happen.
Henry Ford went broke five times before he finally became successful.
21 publishers rejected the manuscript to the novel MASH before it was finally published.
The rock group Boston was turned down by every major record label at least twice before their first album was released; it went on to become (at that time) the greatest selling début album in history.
Winston Churchill didn’t become prime minister of England until he was 62, and then only after a lifetime of defeats and setbacks. He made his greatest contributions while he was a senior citizen.
US President Calvin Coolidge said, “Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.”
Jesus said, “Keep on seeking and you will find.” Prayer is not a matter of sending God a “to-do” list and saying, “Can you get this done for me?” It’s a matter of saying, “God, I know that you provide, and I will keep looking for the answer to this prayer as long as it takes.”
People ask, “What if God doesn’t want me to have what I’m asking for?” If you’re asking for things, I suppose that could sometimes be the case. But there is so much that God wants us to have that we don’t have, simply because we don’t persistently seek after it.
For example, he doesn’t want your relationships to make you miserable. It is God’s will that you have positive relationships. A happy marriage (or a fulfilled unmarried life) is waiting for you, somewhere. Seek it until you find it.
A dynamic, Christ-centered relationship with your friends is waiting for you, somewhere. Seek it until you find it.
A meaningful God-given mission — where you can be involved in changing the lives of others — is waiting for you, somewhere. Seek it until you find it.
To make your dreams come true, ask consistently and seek persistently.
TO BE CONTINUED