Three Keys To Dream-catching

John Ortberg tells the bizarre story of Larry Walker, an unfulfilled pilot “wanna-be.”  Poor eyesight frustrated his desire to be a flyer in the air force.

Unfortunately, it seems that his eyesight wasn’t the only thing that was dim about him. His wits burned a bit low at times also.

 One day he thought he had solved the riddle of how to get those born-to- fly-feet off the ground. He attached forty-five helium-filled weather balloons to his lawn chair and strapped himself in. 

He had stocked up on sandwiches, a pellet gun, and a six-pack of lite beer before he took off.

He figured he’d level out at about 30 feet (10 metres) above his back yard. After eating his sandwiches and drinking his beer, he’d eventually burst a few balloons with his pellet gun and settle back to the earth. 

Imagine his surprise when his friends cut the cord holding him bound to the earth. You think those forty-five helium-filled weather balloons stopped at thirty feet? You jest. One thousand feet? Not even.

Old Larry finally stopped climbing at 16,000 feet. Way up there, he wasn’t too excited about shooting any of his balloons. Things began to heat up, though, when he drifted into the airspace of a Los Angeles airport. Continue reading

Are you big enough for the dream God has given you?

Are you big enough for the dream God has given you?

I like to imagine how things might have happened …

Two disciples trudged back up the road towards Jesus, a frown bigger than Mt Sinai staining their visage.

Jesus had sent them to the next Samaritan village to prepare for his team.

“They said they didn’t want any dirty Jews passing through their town!” the men reported.

John and his brother James stood next to Jesus. John’s face flamed as red as a thermometer–and thermometers hadn’t even been invented yet.

“Lord!” he spat. “Do you want us to call down fire from heaven and burn them up?”

John had dreams and visions of doing great things for God. So here he is, with John,  getting ready to act like the great prophet Elijah, who called down fire on his enemies. John had faith too. He could do powerful things. Just watch!

Jesus wasn’t too surprised at his reaction. After all He had nicknamed John and his tempestuous brother, “the Sons of Thunder.”

In my imagination I see John warming up his “calling-down-fire-from-heaven” voice when Jesus stops and rebukes him. Continue reading

Will God Snatch Back His Dream For You?

Flickr, Creative Commons: Vilseskogen tasting blood

If there are mosquitos in heaven the Lord and I are going to have a serious conversation. I’ve shared with you in the past some of my misadventures with these horrible creatures of darkness.

It happened again the other night. Phyllis and I had traveled some 250 miles (400 kilometers plus) for a couples weekend we were doing. I was road-kill by the time I fell into bed after the meeting but I knew that a good night’s sleep would put me in form again.

Fate hadn’t fated a good night’s sleep, though.

Sometimes in the quiet of the midnight darkness, there in the Vosges mountains the vampires come out. Suddenly above the roar of my snores I heard, “Eeeeeeeeeeeeeee!”

“Ah, no!” I scooted further under the sheet, all the while trying to swat the blood sucker away. Only, it was too hot under the covers and the threat of his “eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee,” kept me awake. After a period of calm I would finally drift off only to hear, “eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.”

“Ai yi yi!” Swat! Swat!

That continued until the predators had drunk their fill and retired to dark corners to lick my blood off their lips and burp. (Do mosquitoes burp? I’ll have to google that).

I would have been better off if I had offered him my arm and let him fill himself up the first time he pounced on me. Then, I could have slept.
The next day I felt like double road-kill. Continue reading

Are You A Dreamer Or a Visionary?

I saw it again the other night. This lady sat there strumming her guitar and I began to drift off into the Rocky Mountains or to some other deep beautiful place.

For years I’ve wanted to play the guitar. I could  see myself sitting there, twanging the guitar like Pavrotti sings opera. I was going to be good. Then one day a friend loaned me a guitar and gave me a few lessons. Continue reading

Five Steps To Reclaiming Your Dream

You probably know by now that I like to talk about dreams

The other morning my wife came into my office talking about this weird dream she had had the night before. She told a disjointed story that would have crossed a statues eyes with its strangeness.

Then I told her about a dream that I had had which had something to do about bombing a city. With others I had debated whether it was right, because many civilians would be killed. Then the scene fast forwarded and I was flying above the city. I say, “I”, because I wasn’t in an airplane.

I was flying.

Down below I saw a one of our soldiers running trying to get away and an enemy chasing him. So I positioned myself in flight and was going to try to spit on the head of the bad guy so as to distract him and give my friend an advantage. It was going to take a big spit.

Rough night.


There is a kind of dream, though, that can motivate your life. We also call them visions, hopes, goals, etc. You’re never too young to dream. Young Jeremiah protested God’s dream for his life. “Hold it , Master God! Look at me. I don’t know anything. I’m only a boy!” (Jeremiah 1, The Message).

God used him anyway.

Old man Moses creaked around on 80-year old joints at the back side of the desert. When God gave him the dream of leading Israel out of Egypt he responded sincerely, “Send someone else!”

All the same, the dream eventually inspired the octogenarian to do exploits for God.

Those great “theologians” Simon and Garfunkle once sang a song about two old friends, sitting on a park bench. Sad music accompanied words that sang of being surprised at being 70 years old now and all they had left was their memories.

Made me want to cry. Is that all there is to look forward to? Paul Simon was 27, I think, when he wrote that song.

Someone said that old age begins when your memories take the place of your dreams. Honestly, though, some young people have gotten “old” because bitterness or disappointment or doubt or fear or all kinds of things have taken the place of their hopes—their dreams.

How do you get your dream back? Eat a lot of pizza at 11 p.m.? Nah, try this.

*Start looking to the Lord. Get your eyes on Him and not on your hurts, problems or memories. Nehemiah the wall builder inspired some tired, dirty people with his words: “I looked [them over] and rose up and said to the nobles and officials and the other people, Do not be afraid of the enemy; [earnestly] remember the Lord and imprint Him [on your minds], great and terrible, and [take from Him courage to] fight for your brethren, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes.” (Nehemiah 4:14, Amplified version)

*Don’t limit your dream because of age—too young, too old—or because of whatever you perceive would stop you. If your dream really comes from God, He delights in providing what you need to accomplish it. Read His Word to refresh His promises in your heart, then act on that faith.

*Find others to help you accomplish it. It’s rare that a God dream happens to one person alone. God-sized dreams often span generations and involve many people. Don’t be afraid to let others share your dream. Don’t use and manipulate them to accomplish your dream. Inspire them to have a part in the dream God has given you.

*If you don’t have a dream God might want you to enter someone else’s dream and help him accomplish it. The dream is God’s, whoever has it. When we enter it, it becomes ours, too. You need a dream. Find God’s dream for you.

*Hang out with dreamers and be a person who “infects” others with dreams instead of sourness and doubt. Listen to what I received recently from some motivated friends, all over 60 years old: “Hey, Dave! Dream big, because our God is even bigger and He can help you accomplish even more.” H. and K. And, “The point of it all, Dave, is to finish well.  May that be said of both of us.” M.

God-dreams … or memories, disappointments and self-pitying tears? What film plays in the theater of your mind? What motivates you?

Just a thought. Paul Simon who wrote, “Old Friends,” turns 70 this year. I wonder if he’s dreaming or remembering. And I wonder if those 70-year old friends on the park bench seem as old to him now as they did when he was 27.


“There is a huge storm coming, Israel. Get out of the way.” Thomas Friedman writing in the New York Times.