I am a dreamer.
I love window shopping. When I do, it always goes far beyond simple admiration. I like to touch, feel, smell. I will shop until I have identified the absolute best bargain for the money. Often, I will call friends, share my dream and purpose, and get their opinion.
However, in the end it usually comes down. The dream sadly gets filed away into a “wishlist” to wither and die. Yet, with all my dying wishes this process oddly still remains fun for me. I am a dreamer – I like dreaming.
It is not so for my wife. After a couple decades of elaborate dream sharing, big plans, crazy ideas, and dying wishlists, she now pleasantly smiles and asks, “Are we DOING that today? If we are DOING that, I’m in! If not, could you take out the trash?”
She gets it. Dreams are… well, just dreams. Dreams are fun for the moment, but that is about it. Dreams don’t count for anything – they can’t even get the trash out!
Since boyhood I considered myself a bit of an outdoorsman. As a boy I spent countless hours lost in little strips of Missouri woods. I was blown away when I moved to a state with real forests, clear streams, and big mountains. My imagination raced wildly every time I saw that big mountain watching over Tacoma. I started dreaming of climbing Mt Rainier. I watched films about climbing, bought books about mountaineering, and got a membership at REI! I like dreaming.
But then DOING is something different.
“Life” happens so they say – and dreams get dusty. One morning, almost 20 years after seeing that mountain for the first time, I got to the top of the dozen or so steps in my house and paused to catch my breath. Twelve steps and wheezing! Outdoorsman? Mountaineer? The only outdoor activity I could do – was the bottom floor of REI. So glad its only girls clothes on the second floor!
That’s when I realized: DOING beats dreaming.
So at 41 years of age I started running. I wasn’t returning to a youthful passion. Honestly – always hated running! But I determined to DO.
My years of inactivity and neglected health were littered with dreams and excuses. Excuses like: the weather was uncooperative, my bike was stolen, memberships are too expensive, and aerobics too…. well, you get the picture. The only thing between me and health were the lonely black sneakers in the corner of my room I named: DOING. So one afternoon in the cold spring of my 41st year I tied on DOING and went for a run.
DOING beats dreaming. I wish it was glorious. I would like to tell you the clouds parted, the birds sang sweeter, or my food tasted better that night.
None of that was the case. It was hard. I felt miserable… for quite awhile. But, it changed me- in many ways. DOING does that.
DOING is where we come alive – it’s where faith gets real. I am convinced that those little steps toward obedience, health, and the heart of God aren’t so little in heaven. Every excruciating step of DOING reverberates through the chambers of Heaven unlike any note from an angel’s tongue. And DOING paves a new way into the heart of God.
Whoever comes to Me and hears and DOES what I say, I will show you who he is like. He is like a man who built a house. He dug deep to put the building on rock. When the water came up and the river beat against the house, the building could not be shaken because it was built on rock. Luke 6:47-49 (NLV)
So, my suggestion today: go to the corner of your room dust off DOING and tie them on for a short jog – you will be glad you did!