Following your Dreams is Not a Race

Following your dreams is not a race. I know I am not the only one who needs this reminder! Keep working, be mindful & intentional about each day, and trust that you are moving forward. You've got this! Great advice for #blogging or #creating

Whoa. Following your dreams is not a race. I think I said that more for myself than anyone right now but I’m sure you can relate at least a little.

We all have dreams

To write a book. Travel the world. Get married. Find the cure. Graduate. Make money as a professional photographer. Be a full time blogger. Sing on stage. Get that promotion. Raise loving & passionate kids. Beat your last race time. Open your own business. and the list goes on. I don’t know your dreams but you do. We are dreamers. We were created to dream, create, innovate, explore, and push toward new things.

I love this Timothy Keller quote that I just discovered by reading Experiencing God in your Work (which, side note, is a really great book on “work” and is already totally rocking some of my thoughts about work. It’s a great read!) :

When we take a piece of land and garden or farm it, or preserve it so it can produce its peculiar life-splendors, when we take fabric and make a piece of clothing, when we push a broom to clean up a place, when we use technology to harness the forces of electricity, when we take an unformed, naive human mind and teach it a subject, when we take unprocessed material and turn it into a poignant work of art, when we take undifferentiated tones and pitches (noise) and separate them out and arrange them to create music, (even when we pass a comb through our hair) – whenever we bring order out of chaos, whenever we draw out creative potential, whenever we elaborate and ‘unfold’ creation further than where it was when we found it – we are continuing God’s work of creative, cultural development.

What a beautiful image! We were created to create and to work. It is a way that we reflect God. Dreaming is built into our DNA.

If it is something we were created to do, then why does it feel so stressful?! We rush to meet deadlines & stare at dreams floating off in the distance doubting we’ll even even reach them. We spend so much time worrying about why we’re slow, what’s wrong with us, and sometimes even giving up on those dreams that feel too impossible.

It is not a race

We don’t lose when it takes longer than a week, or months, or years to see completion. We don’t fail when those dreams sit in our heart and the path to them isn’t clear, methodical, or making headway.

And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. – Philippians 1:6

This is one of my favorite scriptures of late (I’ve talked about it before here & here as my verse of the year) but I find it is so fitting for the creative, blogging, dreaming, small business, big plans life. This work that is being done in us will be finished – there is an end & a beautiful completion. But my dear friends, it is not a race. You don’t need to get there next week or tomorrow or by 3:00 pm this afternoon.

Your dreams and your work is part of a bigger story. It is the adventure of life – how we reflect the Lord (our creator) and how we love him in return. Yes, set small & achievable goals! Yes, set deadlines for little projects. and of course, yes, dream big!  But don’t give up on those big dreams when they take a lot of little steps to get there.

Trust that your daily work is valuable too (hugging crying babies, cleaning messy kitchens, calling long distance friends, creating meals to feed your family, laughing at a funny joke or great youtube video, sneaking off for date night with your man, sending emails, taking a shower, sleeping in) They are all parts of the great work you do. Ask the Lord what He has for you that day and rest in that peace.

xoxo, elizabeth

Photo by: Stellar Propeller Studios

Author: Elizabeth Mayberry

  • Great words Beth! So encouraging!

    • Oak & Oats

      Sam! I am so glad these words were encouraging to you!! You’ve got this!

  • I really needed this reminder today! Thank you!

    • Oak & Oats

      I am so glad that it was perfect timing!!

  • This is such a great post, Elizabeth! This is something I always need the reminder of. It’s so easy to want to be the FIRST or the BEST, but we really have to remember that we do this for Jesus, and he has a plan. Thank you for writing this. You’re very talented!

    • Oak & Oats

      Yes! I am so glad it encouraged your heart! And that you also for the sweet words 🙂 xoxo

  • I love this, Beth!! Thanks for these great reminders! I really enjoy Timothy Keller – I didn’t realize he had a book on work! Love that quote!

    • Oak & Oats

      Yeah! I honestly don’t know if the quote was from a book or a sermon but I think it is so great!

  • amy

    beautiful, beautiful writing beth.
    this was DEFINITELY something i needed to be nudged and reminded of today. <3

    • Oak & Oats

      Amy! I’m so glad this post encouraged your heart!

  • This was my favorite line: “We don’t lose when it takes longer than a week.” It’s so obvious when it’s written out like that and yet sometimes we put unrealistic expectations on ourselves regarding the timing of our dreams…

    • Oak & Oats

      Yes! Oh girl, I so agree!

  • This is so, so good. Feeling so inspired after reading this. Thanks Elizabeth!

    • Oak & Oats

      YAY! So glad to encourage & inspire thought my mess & journey!

  • What an encouraging post! It’s all too easy for me to get caught up in my big dreams for my future that I forget to see how God is working here and now. Timothy Keller is one of my favorites, but I haven’t read that book yet – I’ll have to look it up. 🙂

    • Oak & Oats

      Yes! So true Cassandra! I read the quote referenced in another book (the one about work) I am not sure if the Tim Keller quote is from a book or a sermon!

  • I love this post- thank you! I agree that dreams are built into our DNA and I love how you put that 🙂

    • Oak & Oats

      YES! I so believe it! Think of all the advances we have made over the history of mankind! So many dreamers!

  • I actually really needed to hear this! Working at home really does make you feel like you have to constantly work, and are never done. It’s so good tot take a step back sometimes & realize that we will get there someday. XO

    • Oak & Oats

      I am so glad this post was an encouragement for you today!! Yes! I so agree. It is okay if everything doesn’t always get done all the time!

  • This is soo true!! In the world of instant gratification it can be so hard to wait and dream, but it can be soo rewarding!!!

    • Oak & Oats

      Yes! So true. We want it all and we want it now! haha

  • Words to live by for sure!

    • Oak & Oats

      I agree!

  • crystal

    Great post!

    • Oak & Oats

      Thanks so much!