You Were Created by God to Dream
Dreaming has an essential role in developing your faith and helping you become the kind of person God has always intended you to be. There is an important connection between dreaming and believing, between your imagination and your growth. Without a dream, you get stuck. But with God-inspired dreams, you have almost limitless possibilities.
Before you took your first breath, God had already placed the gift of imagination into your brain. God hardwired creativity into every cell of your body. The Bible says you were created in God’s image (Genesis 1:26). Part of what is included in being made in God’s image is the ability to dream and create something out of nothing.
This ability to dream of something you have not yet experienced is a God-given capacity that sets humans apart from the rest of God’s creation. Fish can’t imagine flying or even living out of water. Birds can’t imagine living underwater. But humans have dreamed of both of these, and so much more, for ages.
Dreaming is an important part of what makes you human. People dream great dreams. They imagine creating and doing things often years before those things become reality. Everything that humanity has accomplished in history started as a dream. Napoleon once said, “Imagination rules the world!”
Your dreams profoundly shape your identity, your happiness, your achievements, and your fulfillment. But God-inspired dreaming is far more important than just these benefits. Dreaming has eternal implications too. Dreaming is always the first step God uses in his process to change your life for the better. Everything starts as a dream.
God dreams. Just look around! Everything in the universe is something God dreamed up. You can’t get past the first phrase of the first verse of the first chapter of the Bible without coming face-to-face with God’s creativity. Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created.” God imagined and spoke everything into existence. It all began in the mind of God. The Bible says, “Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind” (John 1:3-4).
Just by looking at nature, we can learn a lot about God. We can see that God is powerful. We can see that God loves beauty. We can see that God cares about details. We can see that God is organized. He has created all kinds of coordinated systems that interrelate—in the galaxies, in our environment, in our bodies, and in many other ways. Science continues to uncover new relationships between systems that we were previously unaware of.
Most of all, we see God’s creativity in nature. Our Creator is extravagantly creative. Just think of all the plants and animals that fill our planet. He dreamed up the millions of variations in creatures and vegetation—and then he created you. He gave you the ability to create too, by giving you the capacity to dream, imagine, and plan.
Children are naturally creative dreamers. We learn by playing make-believe. You dreamed of doing things in your mind long before you actually did them. Yes, children are instinctively creative dreamers who imagine all kinds of things that adults know are “impossible.” What happens to all that joyful creativity and dreaming? It gets crushed, stuffed, suppressed, stifled, and destroyed by others over time. It’s tragic but true. Typically, the older we get, the less we imagine and create.
What does all of this have to do with your spiritual development? Everything! Most people are unaware of the important connection between dreaming and faith. But men and women of deep faith have always been great dreamers. They didn’t stop dreaming after childhood. The Bible is filled with examples of adult dreamers: Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Ruth, Esther, and many more. Instead of settling for the way things are in the world, people with strong faith imagine the possibilities of what could happen if they just trusted God a little bit more.
Great faith inspires great dreams.
Great dreams require great faith.
In many ways, a great dream is a statement of faith. Certainly, announcing your dream publicly requires faith because other people are likely to reject it. To courageously imagine or dream of a better future for yourself, for your family, or for others is an act of faith. You are saying, “I believe that things can change and can be different, and I believe that God will enable me to accomplish it!” Trusting God always makes God happy. The Bible says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6).
I believe God is pleased that you are reading this right now. You matter to God, and he is not finished with your life. This is the beginning of something wonderful.
Adapted from Created to Dream: The 6 Phases God Uses to Grow Your Faith by Rick Warren.
Created to Dream
The Bible is full of stories of people whose God-given dreams became reality—but not without first going through the six phases of faith. God has a dream for your life—and in this powerful volume, Pastor Rick Warren explains the process God uses to fulfill the dream he gives you.Learn More