My dad wanted for me to become a famous concert pianist at a young age. He even dreamed about traveling together for competitions and performances over the course of my adolescence.
My Dreams were different. I wanted to help people in their distress so I became a mental health provider and achieved my ‘American Dream’ over the course of three decades.
Now, my friend, there is nothing wrong about having dreams or specific goals in today’s world. It is healthy to be intentional about our daily, monthly, quarterly and yearly goals. Our Lord even recommends for all of us to be purposeful in life and maintain a clear vision; otherwise, we would perish in the long run.
”So go ahead and be intentional every day in pursuit of your American Dream.”I am thankful for accomplishing my ‘American dream’ and so much more. I know God had the best plan for me and He even took me further than I ever imagined or expected.
Be cautious though not to be blindfolded along the way… I know I was!
For so long, I was so proud of my career pursuits and hardly ever acknowledged God in my plans early on in my career.
When our goals become idols, “I must attain this right now” attitude, we may neglect God’s will. I was disobedient and even rebellious when I was on the ‘fast track’. I worked 70-80 hours a week, did not rest a day, smoked up to two packs of cigarettes a day, rushed throughout the day so I would get to the next action step, never had time for family or friends, completed three graduate schools’ programs in a timely manner, and finally attained professional licensure in two different States and a worldwide Board certification at a high price and cost!
I am quite exhausted right about now just thinking about the energy I spent all of those years striving for peak performance. Do not be impressed, my friend. I am not here to boast or impress anyone.
I’m here to share briefly with you about the damaging effects of idolatry.
I have been an overachiever since my early college years. I can now relax and enjoy my professional career! I thank God for His wisdom and discernment in the past decade otherwise I would have probably self-destructed. I never had an opportunity to be still and allow God to speak to my heart much less time to renew or be transformed by His Word.
If I would have known He was already there fighting on my behalf, I would have listened to all of His whispers, obey His commands and waited on His promises to be fulfilled in His perfect timing. His Truth reminds me today, “The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14 NIV
I’ve got quite a few regrets today such as: broken, strained and distant relationships with family members, significant upper-respiratory health issues, and the fact I never had time to consider having children.
I was in bondage for way too long! Yes, I was indeed.
Trapped. Blind. Lost. Dead in my transgressions.
The ‘American Dream’ blindfolded me. I was self-centered and selfish when achieving all types of goals.
Until one day…
I heard the Gospel preached at a local Church, It finally came all together. I admitted I was a sinner who was dead in my transgressions and caught up with today’s cultural pursuits and success track.
God was relentless in His pursuit and He never let me go… I finally surrendered it all and started to renew my mind with His Word, my life was transformed thereafter.
The Cross has the final Word, sweet friend, not the ‘American Dream’.
I am now free from the ‘American Dream’ bondage.
I still work hard in everything I do, but my purpose is not to please man anymore. My main purpose is to maintain an eternal perspective, fear our Lord and glorify Him at the end of the day in everything I do.
In Christ, I’m alive and free.
“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”
Galatians 5:1 NIV
How about you my friend? Do you fear man or are you pleasing the Lord today?
We all have a choice.
I chose Christ.
I am alive and free today.
Photo Courtesy: Andressa Voltolini