*Special Guest Post Today* by author and speaker Holley Gerth* Holley and I write alongside each other for DaySpring's (In)Courage site (Holley is Co-Founder & Sr. Editor). I'm especially blessed by her heart which she shares generously through her words and our friendship, which has deepened through ongoing conversations about God-sized dreams. Holley's the real deal when it comes to honestly sharing encouragement. Enjoy today's Christmas guest post brew! A Special Christmas Nativity Giveaway! Share a comment and be entered to win this handmade Christmas Nativity Pewter decoration -- from me to you.
A pregnant teenager.
A long journey.
A manger instead of a bed.
It’s not what we would imagine. Not what we would choose.
“Surprise!” exclaims the God of the Universe.
I don’t think it’s coincidence that Christmas is so close to the New Year—the time when most of us feel more freedom to dream.
What if Christmas is actually the reason we can do so?
What if it’s a message from God telling us to take a chance, make a leap, do the unexpected…and it simply gets lost between the tinsel and the stockings?
Christmas is wild, beautiful, the unimaginable made possible. It’s a story of broken expectations, of little being much, of nothing working out the way anyone planned.
Isn’t that the way our dreams are too?
It seems I keep coming back to God-sized Dreams—to the idea that dreaming isn’t really about us at all.
Instead it’s about the Dreamer…the One who spoke the world into being and still whispers impossible things into our hearts.
Do we hear Him?
Yes, I know you do.
That thing He’s telling you may feel too big, too hard, too far away.
I feel it too.
But then I think about Christmas.
And my dream seems quite tame in comparison.
It’s the ultimate challenge. The wildest wonder.
Christmas is a celebration.
It’s also an invitation.
God calls each of us, like Mary, beyond our comfort zones and into His arms…
“I am the LORD’s servant…May it be to me as you have said.” Luke 1:38
We are the Lord’s servants, His dreamers.
May it be to us as He has said too—
especially this year.
— By Holley Gerth
You can find more of Holley's encouraging words served up on her blog Heart to Heart. Please be sure to visit and connect with her there!
*CHRISTMAS NATIVITY GIVEAWAY*
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God size dreams…. I don’t know how to dream anymore. All my dreams are taken away or shattered… But I do know this, God is with me. I have prayed many times and asked God to show me how to dream. Right now it is a matter of taking things moment by moment and surviving. God is with me through it, but at times that is hard to see, other times easy to remember.
Thank you Bonnie for sharing what Holley has shared.
.-= Katie´s last blog ..Unwrapping Jesus through Blue Christmas =-.
Katie I hope and pray that your dreams get restored to you.
God hears you and you will be answered.
Merry Christmas to you and yours.
.-= Katie´s last blog ..Unwrapping Jesus through Blue Christmas =-.
When our dreams are stripped away and it seems we don’t know how to dream, I think it is then that we are better able to receive God-sized dreams. These dreams are planted by God. It is He that makes for God-sized dreams.
Our own dreams…that which we know “how” to dream might be big dreams, but they aren’t God-sized “impossible-looking” dreams…nor are they of the type that is tied to certainty and hope in the Biblical sense. We can rejoice in not knowing our own dreams. It makes way for “all things are possible with God”-sized dreams to be planted. Ask Him about this.
God plants, tends, and ultimately brings God-sized dreams to harvest. We only simply need to wait on the Lord, and rejoice in His work…His dream…His loving promises. At least this is how He is leading me. It has been many years, but time is not the issue. God knows the time, and He helps in the wait. Peace-
This is just what I needed this morning! What encouraging words and a way to look at Christmas in a new way! It has been so busy that my soul has been unsettled and there has been no time to just sit and reflect on what this time of year is truly about! I like the fact that New Years IS so close to Christmas, its like a new beginning and a fresh start, you know the “do overs” we all wish for at times! May each and everyone of you be abundantly blessed this Christmas and may God move you in a way you never DREAMED possible!
Christmas is about “God with us”…in so many ways and levels..May we dream big dreams this year adn always!
I love to decorate with nativities. I have one I keep up all year round then in the season I put out children’s for the little ones to play with then I put up the ‘pretty ones’ they can’t touch. It is wonderful to tell the Christmas story.
I love reading about God size dreams… it reminds me that God has big plans for my life, and I need to listen, and take that leap of faith to be able to receive all those wonder blessings that he has in store.. God Bless!
Thank-you, Lord, for giving us God-sized dreams.
I’m so sorry about your dreams…..It’s my story as well. My thoughts on this are that God wants us to love Him more than the dream. Imagine your God size dream being that you and I love Him more each day. Allow HIM entry into our hurts, to trust HIM with our lives so much that we are actually living the God size dream with our faith! I don’t know if this makes any sense to you but it’s what I cling too!
Merry Christmas to all of the women on this blog! “God will tnederly comfort you…He will give you the strength to endure” 2 Cor. 1:17
What you say is exactly what I have been doing, it is just a long road. And some days are easier than others. Thank you.
.-= Katie´s last blog ..Unwrapping Jesus through Blue Christmas =-.
Thank you, thank you! I really needed this encouragement today. You’ve got me in tears. So many times in recent days and even earlier this morning, I felt sad because things weren’t working out as I hoped or planned this Christmas season. I get discouraged easily and get tempted to throw myself a pity party and I know that’s wrong. But now, after reading this — oh my goodness! “May it be to us as He has said too—especially this year.” I’m still dreaming…
Love and blessings,
Oh, how much this meant to me to read it today. God is never late, always on time, right when we need his words, written by others, inspired by Him. Thank you for allowing yourself to be used by Him.
Living God-sized dreams takes us on God-sized journeys. We have to trust that as we take those leaps/steps of faith, He ever so gently holds us in His loving care.
Thank you for this holiday blessing.
Just want to say Thank You! for sharing from your heart. It is the encouragment I so often need in a crazy confussing work day. It helps me stay focused on what is important!
Godsized dreams. God is so good. He miraculously healed my mother-in-law’s subdural hematoma at 84 yrs. of age. She had bled so much that her brain shifted. But, Praise God, she is a walking talking miracle and now recuperating in the nursing home for a few weeks. She then plans to return to her home! God is so good!!!! All the time!!! Even when things look the bleakest. Especially when they look the bleakest!!!! Blessings to all…..Merry Christmas!!
Thank you for the reminder to dream for ourselves. It’s so easy to get caught up in our preparations for Christmas and put more emphasis on that than on the true meaning of
Christmas! And, oh, so true that we prefer to stay in our comfort zone, rather than trust
Him… May we all dream and trust Him!
God sized dreams…we all have them. No matter what age we are. The big eyes of a 3 year old, dreaming about getting that special toy, the teenager, dreaming what their future holds…the young couple dreaming about their first child, or their first home.
Shattered dreams…we all have those too. But I’ve learned that not getting what you want, can sometimes be a wonderful stroke of luck..or blessing.
Dreaming produces creativity, gives us endless possibilities and hope.
Dreaming..is the icing on the cake of life!
Holley’s post about God sized dreams has me beginning to dream again. It has been almost 2 years since my abusive husband left me and our two teen sons, and in that time my dreams were put on hold or just never pursued. I have been too scared to step into my dream and then often wonder if that is really where God wants me at this time in my life.
I will dream today and keep dreaming, and praying that He leads me into the place He has for me. I will step into it and accept it just as a young woman did so many years ago.
Thank you as usual for your words of encouragement Holley.
.-= Amy´s last blog ..A time for everything =-.
“God calls each of us, like Mary, beyond our comfort zones and into His arms…
‘I am the LORD’s servant…May it be to me as you have said.’ Luke 1:38”
After all these years, still struggling to be this vulnerable to His plans for me, to use me. Your thoughts (in)courage me to be just that.
Dreams??? I have dreamed all my life, school, marriage, children, beautiful home and a wonderful family, I had it all but never as I dreamed. Each time I read the Nativity story it touches me to see how obediently supporting Joseph was of his pregnant wife ( A pregnancy he was not even responsible For)When you have a husband who does not support or have regard for you or the children the future looks bleak, but thank God for Hope, I still do hope in the midst of it all that someday my dream of a wonderful family, enjoying christmas together will be fulfilled.Am grateful to God for His faithfulness and mercies.
Thank you for the reality check today! Sometimes it’s erie how you not only get into my heart, but also read my brain!!! My plans for Christmas have not come together, but I will do what I can to spread the joy and celebration with others on Jesus’ Birthday. Hopefully, my family will be together soon and we can celebrate again.
God’s ways are better than my ways 🙂
God Bless You!
Years ago a man came to my door and told me December 25th was not the day Jesus was born. I told him that if one only relied on one day of the year as His having been born there was really no value in remembering -it was a life time thing! He left without further conversation.
Sometimes its so scary to dream, maybe they are too big or too hard. But I am learning that God wants good for us and He can accomplish anything!
Bonnie and Holley,
God gave you your misionary hearts, as you know. Today is special, I gave my heart to Jesus Christ by reading the message from Him and putting it to my hearts needs. Thank you for being faithful servants. God Bless You! Carol
Thank you Holley,
The gray days of winter and aloneness, not just loneliness, makes it so hard to dream.Just to dream a little dream takes remembering that God knows those dreams, but to have the faith that dreams can come true is so hard to maintain. But your words help to rekindle that faith.
Have a wonderful Christmas and joyous new year.
Merry Christmas everyone. May God’s blessings rain down on each and every one of you. May He fill your hearts with His love this Christmas day. You are a blessing Holley and you have touched my heart in so many ways and so many times. So many things have happened this year, some good and some not so good. God has been with me through all of it and He continues to guide me every day. I love Him so much and He has been my mainstay through all the days ahead. Love to all Chris
Christmas is also about restoring…which God did for us when He sent His one and only Son as a sacrifice for us. He restored our broken relationship between us and Him so that we could live with Him forever. He is the perfecter of restoration. When we are “broken” in any aspect in our lives, it is God, not man, that we should seek to restore it. “…My help comes from the Lord, Who made the heavens and the earth….”Psalm 121
My dreams used to be soooo different than they are now. As a girl I dreamed of a safe home, a husband who loved me as much as I loved him, and children. Now I have them. Then as I got into the working world I dreamed of making enough money to support my family. Then I did. I never dreamed in the midst of working as an medical instructor I would be dealt a hard diagnosis of Fibromyalgia. I couldn’t walk without a cane. I was soooo depressed. I was taking 12 medications to get through the day. Then someone I never dreamed of came along. Our fourth little girl. Jesus came in to that ugly dark place and brought beauty for ashes. Now I can walk and choose when I want to be medicated. I am a Youth Pastor and Worship Leader. In between those two sentences was nothing short of many miracles. Now I have been dreaming huge. I want to open a Christian Counseling Center down the road from my house and have just been accepted at Grand Canyon University for a degree in Counseling. I am scared. I am shaking like the shepherds. I am also in the midst of therapy due to childhood sexual abuse. The great thing is what I never dreamed of is coming true to. The unexpected grace of God through people like you Holley. Those who encourage us to keep on keeping on. Thanks for bringing me along. Melinda
Yes! May His will be done IN and THROUGH each of us!!
Thanks for sharing…lovely as always!
.-= marina bromley´s last blog ..Great is Thy Faithfulness =-.
Thank you for this encouragement! I will be pasing this on to my Mary Kay unit of Dream Believers. This past year I had some really big dreams and knew that wihtout God’s guidance and direction, and His will, my dreams wouldn’t come true. I had tried several times to become a Mary Kay Sales Director but just couldn’t make it. Finally in January 2010 I put God first before my dreams and asked him to lead me daily. Isn’t it wonderful when we put God first how he blesses us in so many different ways. I was richly blessed by becoming a Sales Director June 1st and earning a free car too! I continue to daily remember to put God first, family second and career third. I remember…but I don’t always follow that and I discover that for my days to be better I always need to take time for God every day. Merry Christmnas!
Dare to Dream Big,
Years ago a man came to my door and told me December 25th was not Jesus’ birthday. I told him if I just celebrated Jesus’ birth the one day-there was nothing gained. It was knowing and celebrating the year round that gave me assurance of His coming-it really made me no difference when His birthday was-it was that He indeed had come at some date. The man left without furher “argument”!
Thank you so much for sharing this. Sometimes I feel the dreams in my heart are too much to hope for but I’m thinking they were never really mine to begin with – they are His and He’s placed them in my heart because he’s kind enough to share His hopes and His dreams and all His wonderful plans with me – and I get to share in His heart and watch Him unfold every magnificent thing He has planned.
I look forward too and enjoy each morning turning on my work computer to see an email from In courage and I take my time to read and enjoy each message and then I pass it on to my friends and loved ones. My daughter and I usually end up sharing emails back and forth about the message. Some days I get an email back from someone that says…Thanks I needed that. This Christmas seems so different for me, I have always been about giving, but this year I am finding so much more joy in just sharing time with family and friends…my Christmas Day plans are to spend some time at a Children’s home with children that will not be with their parents or family this year. I want to make them part of my family and embrase them with love. Its our time that means so much to others. Merry Christmas from our heart to yours.
Dreams are huge this time of year… just praying that everyones dreams turn into reality in the New Year!!
Thank you for your words, and may your Christmas be dreamy.
I thank God for all you do! My husband and I sence Gods challenge to begin praying and believing for his provision to be debt free in 2011. We are also believing God to provide a job for my husband that is better than his last job truck driving. Our future is uncertain as the world sees it. But we serve a God that makes everything possible! Math 19:26 say’s ALL things are possible with God! We are also praying for Gods timing and wisdom from above for the dream He has placed in our heart’s to pray and seek his face dillagently for His release to plant an orphanage wherever He has planned to bring life, hope,safety and most of all Gods love to those children that nobody want’s. That they to can know how much God loves them and want’s relationship with them.We are honored and excited for his release! May all your CHRISTmas dreams come true! God bless. Therese and Ron Smith.
Thank you for such a great message today. It rerally struck a note in my heart as God contiues to show me his dream for me and I struggle with the courage to say yes. Thank you for sharing.
Oh yes…He most definitely calls us beyond our comfort zones. The very thought of having to speak in front of a crowd sends shivers down my spine, and yet twice now, He pushed me in that direction. Or praying with someone who is in pain…that one is difficult. It’s just outside my comfort zone. Then, there’s these Praise and Coffees I do every month–meeting women I don’t know–and though I enjoy it in the end, my stomach tends to do that little twisty thing beforehand.
.-= Nikole Hahn´s last blog ..Jaded and Cynical =-.
Christmas can be a hard time for many. May the love and caring Christ showed to us be reflected in our eyes and hearts towards others. Let’s not forget the least of these and show the true meaning and heart of Christmas. May God bless each one of you! Merry CHRISTmas!!!
Yes, Holley we can fulfill our God sized dreams through him, but at times it’s hard to imagine that we can. I want to be the Lord’s servant and his will be done through me..
Thank you very much! It’s just what I needed to hear this morning! May we all dream “God sized dreams!” Merry Christmas!
Wow, this verse about Mary being the Lord’s servant keeps popping up this year, so I’m thinking it must be a word from the Lord. But it is SO hard to go beyond my comfort zone!! Thanks for the reminder and encouragement to keep looking to Him!
Our lives here on earth are all for God-sized dreams…
Thanks for this great reminder. This seems to be the year that nothing went as planned. Right now I feel discouraged and sad, mourning a number of losses some people and some dreams. I pray God will give me new and better dreams in the years to come. Throughout all these trials – I learned that these trials are God’s stage to show case His amazing love and grace and forgiveness. It is during these times that we are made more aware of our need for God every day and even in the little things that we used to think that we could handle on our own. Focusing on the savior can bring peace and joy even admist the pain. Gratitude also blooms in the deserts of our lives. I am thankful for all those gifts this year. Thank you for reminding me that God’s best plans for us (especially Jesus) often come in ways we don’t expect.
I love this post! God is the God of dreams and of miracles. Thank you for reminding us of His power-the power to do the seemingly impossible in our lives and in the lives of others. Merry Christmas Holley
It is often hard, uncomfortable and sometimes we feel lonely and forgotten, but we are not!
God is with us and stays with us even when it feels he has left the building a la Elvis.
God is there always until the final curtain and clapping the loudest for us, for HE is our biggest fan and will never let us down!
Merry Christmas! : )
As always your post on God-sized Dreams, today too, pierces my heart. I’m living the phrases, feelings and truths you have shared.
Have a blessed Christmas dear sister!
Praying for you,
I will tell you of the Love Jesus has for me, and I can enjoy his Love by spreadding it to others. I was confined to a wheelchair and other walking devices for 24 years, and on April 11/10 I awoke with the love of god in my heart, the sun was shinning, and the 1/2 hour train ride to my friends house was Wonderful. we went to a unique Church, 4 hours long, but the best 4 hours of my life, I left that church walking unassisted, but I was stupid enough to bring my chair back home with me ( just in case). My doubt, put me back into that chair after only 4 months, and 2 months latter a stroke, really devastated me. The medical people said I would never recover, but I`m fully unhindered from the stroke and Walk with the best of people. This time with Faith the chair has tottally disappeared. I now have a small mnistry, that gets it`s hands dirty , to help people. GOD heals for YOU to HELP in his CAUSE of FAITH and LOVE. LIFE is as simple as that. Christmas is the LOVE of GOD, I can`t say it any plainner, I wish you all joy and Happyness this Christmas season, but always Stand on your FAITH. GOD IS STANDING NEXT TO YOU AT ALL TIMES !!
What wonderful thoughts regarding Christmas! They are mind expanding thoughts. Over a year ago our minister challenged us, the Session, to “Step out of the boat” . It was hard at first but as time went on we were able to do so. Our Pancake Breakfasts became free with the elders taking a more significant role. Our LOGOS program for children became free. Vacation Bible School was also free. All these programs were open to everyone in the community. The pancake breakfasts provided a meal for some people who had not had a decent meal for some time. In July our church had a fire in the sanctuary that caused smoke damage throughout the church. Our sanctuary is being rebuilt and we have become a stronger, closer congregation because of the fire. We have truly learned that the church is not a building; it’s the people. God has truly been good to us. As Jeremiah tells us “I have plans for you says the Lord. Plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
Beautiful encouragement! You are definitely helping me to dream God-sized dreams! Thank you.
Posted to my Facebook – I want my friends to dream, too!
Just learning how to do all this blogging – I do lots of reading on the pages and very little commenting. Thank you Holley for listening to God and sharing… God-size Dreams. your words and many others who post are very touching.
This is the best time of the year – being able to share God with loved ones and to reach out to those who may not know the Love of our Lord.
As his true daughters we are not only invited to be someone greater than ourselves we are called to shine out His light to a hurting, forsaken world. He stretches us and grows us in our sanctification. His Holy Spirit tweaks our hearts to obey. Beautiful message Holley!~
I love Holley with an “e” and Ann (without an “e” )
Singing His Praises and looking forward to 2011 with you, my friends and sisters I have to wait until glory to hug.
Anticipating the Return of our KING~
Beautiful sisters, thank you so much for sharing your hearts, hurts, and encouraging words here. I’m asking God to wrap His love around each and every one of you today the way I wish my arms could…
.-= Holley Gerth´s last blog ..God-sized Dreams- A Christmas Gift for Your Heart =-.
Dreaming is for children. Or so I tell myself. And then I am reminded. The Lord asks us to come to Him as little children, fully trusting in Him. So, I dare to dream again. “Father, daddy, I give you my dream fully knowing that they it’s in the right hands.
“His mercies are new every morning” and will cover us in another new year. Thanks so much for the encouraging words, as always. Christmas blessings to everyone!
God sized dreams – dreaming of graduate school. Never would have thought it a year ago. Praying that all goes well this coming semester and starting graduate school in the fall, 2011.
I posted this on Facebook for my friends to see. Everyone needs some encouragement.
[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Holley Gerth, FaithBarista, Jessica Olivares and others. Jessica Olivares said: God-sized Dreams: A Christmas Gift for Your Heart (Guest Post by Holley Gerth) http://j.mp/fR4VeI via @AddToAny […]
As always, many things to think about and improve on in our lives. The words we use can not only hurt others but reflect on ourselves when we let anger rule our hearts.
I completely agree that there must have been “Divine intervention” when Christmas was chose so closen to New Year’s Day. A new year, a new beginning, a new chance to go for our dreams with His encouragement. Trusting Him, having faith in ourselves and, praying for the right course to be following will help us meet new challenges.
“Unwrapping Jesus” has been part of my Christmas routine for 4-5 years now. Instead of buying gifts for family and friends, except for some chocolates, I purchase in their honour gifts from Unicef and World Vision. These gifts then give twice, as the real recipients receive a gift to improve their quality of life.
My Joy this Christmas season has been like the ebb and flo of a tide. At times it is overflowing and other times it just disapears. You see, this is my Christmas without my Dad and I never thought there would be so many “little” moments that his absence hurts so much. Being single can add to the burden, with no partner to lean on. Please pray that I can accept my grief and in that acceptance, look forward to Christmas Eve and Day with my Mom.
May everyone sharing a comment here feel the warmth of Jesus’ arms through this Season and be Blessed in more ways than they can imagine.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Wow, how appropriate!! I normally don’t allow myself to dream because I want to keep it realistic. But this year is different because I KNOW things need to change…in my marriage first and foremost and in several offshoots from there. I love your writing. It’s so encouraging, but concise. You get your point across in a small amount of time and space.:) Merry Christmas to you!!!
I am so thankful that God doesn’t limit our dreams He just asks that we believe. I am believing that all things work out for good for those who love the Lord, and I convinced that He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords and He loves me and you. Merry Christmas to you all and hopefully I will see all that the Lord has for me in the coming year with a grateful heart of anticipation and excitement…..
What a wonderful discovery for Christmas! You have a wonderful blog. Thank you.
Oh praise God for a blessed week and the best is yet to come. God is so good and faithful and many readers have so many testimonies that prove he is living and listening to our prayers.
I ask God for favor today and forever that he allow my family to be together for Christmas (Paul, Gabryel, and me) and that we can be reunited and in marriage. I ask for God’s favor that he seek Paul and bless him with his salvation. I praise God for the 24/7 hedge of protection that he shields my family from the enemy and evils of the world.
Praise God for all his love. I pray that the readers all have a blessed Christmas where ever they are and what they do but to know that this day is for the birth of our saviour.
Shared on Facebook, too 🙂
Thanks for this post. What a wondeful thing to think on, the birth of our Savior, the gift of God.
Hi, Holley and Faith–
Thanks so much for your wonderful words of inspiration! I started a tradition a few years ago of decorating my home with nativity-themed decorations. It’s so wonderful to be able to surround myself with reminders that Christmas is Emmanuel…God is with us. I’m at the stage in my life where I am earnestly seeking the Lord for His Dreams for my life, rather than trying to make anything happen that I could come up with on my own. I praise God that He is in Total Control and He will do exceeding abundantly above all that I could ask or think, according to His Power that works in us…in His Way and in His Timing. Thank you again, lovely ladies, for your incredible devotions. It never seems to fail that The Holy Spirit sees to it that your words are absolutely perfect for what I need each day! Have a Very BLESSED Christmas.
.-= Darla Jones´s last blog ..Heart Surgery- Part 1 =-.
“…lost between the tinsel and the stockings”… I think that’s where I may be right now! Lost… lost in the craziness and busy-ness, too much going on, too much to do, too many places to be and too much to do… did I say that twice?!? and my dream is somehow lost on a shelf somewhere. Thanks for the reminder that this is the time to dream, this, NOW, is the time to find that dream and revive it as I am revived and renewed. I really do have a choice–I don’t have to get caught up in all the craziness of the season. I can choose to be still and know that He is still on the throne…
Thanks Bonnie and Holley…I love and am often encouraged by both of your insights. I can identify with the shattered dreams (as so many here can) Family relationships broken hence hurting and misunderstood hearts. Then, there’s the reaching out and helping someone in need…the trusting, only to faced with uncertainty, loss, and sense of, “Is it worth it?” Am I THAT stupid? You see ever since I was a little girl I’ve believed in people…seeing the good in them and God had given me a heart of compassion. I’m hanging on by a thread to the hope that maybe, just maybe, HE will turn some things around. After all Christmas, Emmanuel …..it’s all about HIM being with us. I must turn to HIM and be thankful for every way that He blesses, in ways that I least expect. For the last couple of weeks I’m writing things to be thankful for in my journal. Every night I go through that day and find something. So in the end it’s not all bad and maybe I can dare to dream again. Maybe I can open up my bruised and frail heart and say “Let it be done according to Your will oh Lord” Then I can just entrust everyone and everything into His hands and wait and watch for the dream to be restored or to be surprised by something brand new!
May each and every one who shares here, and those who don’t (but read the posts) as well as you Bonnie and Holley (and those you love) be truly blessed with the awe and wonder of that first Christmas where the shepherds watched, the angels sang and the wise men came bearing gifts! Let’s all remember that HE is with us through it all. God bless each and everyone.
I am amazed by the beautiful articles that I read. You lift my heart and I always feel better after I read it. Thank You for your words of encouragement and the special comments that you leave for me each day. You are a blessing!!!!
Dreaming is like hope! Without hope we give up, we succumb to thoughts of defeat or rejection, or worse I’m not worthy and then the enemy wins. Without a dream we have nothing bigger than ourselves in life, and that’s pretty puny if it’s just all about me, not to mention boring!!! But when I allow God to plant the seeds of a dream in my heart my expectations rise, not because of me but because of the “Dream Giver”!! May we all receive new dreams from the “Dream Giver” in 2011 and with hopeful expectation wait on Him, obey Him and honor Him in all that we do and say and watch in wonder the fulfillment of our dreams! Bless you Bonnie for the post today!
Thank you God for restoring so much in my life. May Your dreams that you have for all of us Lord Jesus… come true.
I love the devotionals I get everyday. They bless my life so much. MGod’s Presence be your blessing at this wonderful season of Christmas! Ps. 46:10
Sometimes, when I see just how crazy my life is getting, it’s easy to take my focus and put it on my problems and off of what Christmas really means. I still have many dreams that I woudl like fulfilled, but I also know that my dreams may not be His dreams. I have to learn to keep things in perspective, especially around the holiday season. Thanks, Holley, for helping me to see this through today’s devo. May the LORD continue to bless you so that you may write these inspiring devos.
God-sized dreams… I had one too. It was shattered, and now I have let it go. It took a long while to release my grip, but my hands and heart are now open and ready for God’s new dream for me! This new year will bring a job, a new home, and a new life for me. That’s God-sized. I couldn’t do it all on my own, but He is good and faithful to provide and protect. In the second chapter of Joel, God tells His people “I will restore unto you the days that the locusts have eaten.” Beautiful promise, that one!!
Thanks Holley, for writing to my heart, and for being a part of Blessings Unlimited too!! I love getting to tell my guests all about you!
Merry Christday, Holley!!
God has more faith in me then I have in myself. I feel meek and small, so weary and tired, not at all ready for the challenge. But I shall wake again tomorrow and hope I can meet his expectations of me.
I have a lot of irons in the pot that could be my God sized dreams…a camera, a blog, a bookkeeping class. But the way Holley described the manger as not how we dreamed it I feel like maybe my God sized dream, or at least one of them is to be humble and genuine like God was when He placed His Son in the manger. He became common like me. So I want to remain common for the sake of others who need a Savior.
As a child I was frustrated and disappointed by Christmas.
It is sold by media as the happiest season of all and for the most part it is stressful for people instead of peaceful. This year I have taken the time to reflect on what it all means, what is really important and I have found a peace and a joy that I’ve never had before. To think on what the Christmas story is all about has been a revelation this year even though I’ve read it over and over again.
God truly is the biggest dreamer and I am amazed by the breadth and width of his love for us.
Wishing you joy and peace this Christmas and each day of the New Year.
Hi Holley. I hope you are having a wonderful holiday season. Thanks again for your daily words that always hit home and comfort me so well.
God-sized dreams seem to be the specialty item this year. I have some. I had one God sized dream to heal my Father from congestive heart failure so he could be with us another Christmas. I also had God-sized dream to get me completely out of a long term abusive relationship. God answered both of my prayers last month. He answered “no” to the first one by taking my Dad home to Heaven. But all of the blessings and added family I was able to reconnect with in exchange was unexpected and amazing. They really helped to fill that void and inspired me to revive my graphic design business. God has ignited a new fire in me to use what I have lived through and learned to create positive and encouraging materials much like you are doing here. I have new relationships to build and a few to rekindle. I know my Dad is in a better place and that he lived a long, happy life full of friends, family and strong faith. He is with the Lord and my Mom, who passed away 26 years ago. I know I will see them both again. I am so grateful for my family.
As for the second prayer request, God’s answer was “YES”. Just in time for me to enjoy Christmas this year. It wasn’t a pretty sight and neither was I when it was all over, but it is over. Finally. Well…for the most part. The relationship is over but there are still legalities and personal possessions to be returned. That part is frustrating because I am trying to keep this person out of my head. I keep asking God to fill the gaping hole in my heart with His love and Presence and mend the tattered fragments of my soul that are hanging in the breeze. Figuratively speaking, there are the smoking remnants of a war zone to be cleaned up from all the maliciously placed land mines, verbal bombs and shrapnel I’m still picking out of my heart and mind.
God is definitely listening and responding. I feel exceptionally peaceful considering what I’ve just been through. There are moments when I feel like a white hot poker slides into me for a minute. It makes me wince in excruciating pain and it takes my breath away. But each time, while I’m gasping for air, I call out to Jesus and the poker slowly slides back out again. I take a deep breath, rub my chest and I am fine. The pain is replaced by God’s merciful love and He breathes His life into me.
I find grace and mercy to be extremely amazing gifts. Merry Christmas to all of you who are hurting out there. Never give up. There is hope. God hears you and He is waiting to make you God-sized dream come true.
Proverbs 31:25 “She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future.”
Thanks for the encouragement. Trying to make a God-sized dream reality and trying to be a good listener.
Thank you for keeping this phrase in front of us!! The world needs God-sized dreams and we, amazingly, get to dream them. He is the original dreamer and we His image-bearing dreamers. Bless you for helping all of us to thwart the enemy’s plans to dash our dreams before they’re dreamed!
.-= Shaunie Friday´s last blog ..When Mama Grizzly Comes to Christmas =-.
Bonnie, how appropriate to find Holley here today…you both serve up encouragement that tastes better than any Christmas treat!
As usual Holley, your Jesus words have me thinkin’. Love, love, love this post.
Merry Christmas, Friends! Love you both dearly.
Perhaps “dreaming” is an apt synonym for “faith”! Fear undermines them both. Faith lets you rest on (and act on!) God’s promises, which seem impossible ~ the stuff dreams are made of! (God manifest in flesh ~ how impossible is that?!) O, Lord, give me the impulse to let myself go ~ to cast myself into Your impossible!
My husband and I love you, Holley ~ you have blessed us over and over! Merry Christmas to you and your honey!
Oh may it be as He has said unto me! I don’t like to step out of my comfort zone…I am VERY comfortable here! But He doesn’t call us to comfort, but to action. And that usually involves something we are afraid of doing or not sure we’d ever do! I pray that I’ll be ready to step out when He calls me to…
I don’t tweet 🙁
.-= allison morrison´s last blog ..Know Jesus- Know Christmas =-.
Beautiful Holley, You are God’s special gift to me. God’s heart beats more closely you share your words. Thank for hanging your hat here and bringing your beautiful friends with you here!
Dear friends, Thank you for sharing your stories & opening your hearts. I’ll be praying along with Holley, remembering you in my prayers. You have a place here with your name on it.
But I did share on Facebook
.-= allison morrison´s last blog ..Know Jesus- Know Christmas =-.
Not sure what my dream is at this stage of my life .
I finally felt the true Christmas spirit after attending our annual Church concert . God was prsent every where especially in our hearts .
We are so flooded with all the ads in newspaper, Tv and stores that Baby Jesus gets lost plus it makes one feel so rushed . I am planning these couple days before Christmas to just slow down to take time to see what the new year dreams are. I can make for my self with God as my guide. I know he has plans for some thing special for me that I can not see.Peace Joy and Love to all the above Ladies. May we all see Gods dreams for us.
Happy Holidays with all your family and friends Holley.
Thank you for this and for all of the other encouraging, uplifting words you have poured out of your heart into ours all year long. You are a gift – a very special blessing. I am so delighted to have met you. You have enriched my life.
Have a blessed Christmas Holley.
.-= Linda´s last blog ..What Became of the Shepherds =-.
Was thinking about Mary myself today… May it be… Amazing how His Spirit works such unity, isn’t it?
.-= Kelly Sauer´s last blog .. A Restless Heart May it Be =-.
I shared it on Facebook!
Holley, I love how you’re always encouraging us to dream, and to trust God with those dreams! Thank you for that!
.-= Melissa Brotherton´s last blog ..What we’ll have Christmas morning… =-.
We have to slow down to LISTEN and to FEEL God and to KNOW the plans (dreams) He has for us. This is something that I am learning and relearning. Merry Christmas to all of you lovely ladies and may the New Year shower you with God’s many blessings and revelations of His Dreams for your life.
Love this: “God calls each of us, like Mary, beyond our comfort zones and into His arms…”
Holley wields words so beautifully.
.-= Caroline´s last blog ..Christmas Book Review – The Mitford Snowmen by Jan Karon =-.
Thank you for sharing one of your dreams with us! And thank you for a chance to win the beautiful nativity.
I loved this Holley (and Bonnie for hosting)…it gave me such courage and warmed my heart as I am called to think on the seemingly ‘impossible’ and the HUGE transitions of the year ahead and a lot of believing He is going to come through in big ways as we step out in faith…
“But then I think about Christmas.
And my dream seems quite tame in comparison.
It’s the ultimate challenge. The wildest wonder.
Christmas is a celebration.
It’s also an invitation.
God calls each of us, like Mary, beyond our comfort zones and into His arms…”
This is perfect. What a perspective call…thank you and Merry, Merry, Merriest of Christmases…be so, so, so, so blessed!
About God-sized dreams………… I think that we have to carefully and gently hold them in our hearts and guard them……just as Mary did after the angel told her of God’s promise to her, until they can grow and develop more into what God has planned for us. Treasure them in our hearts, knowing that God is the One who is holding us in the palm of His hand …..working it all out…..in His way and in His timing…….leading, ….guiding…..providing all the way…….filled with His joy and hope and special gifts that He has placed inside of each one of us. That’s what I have been feeling about the God-sized dream in my heart……. sometimes i think its gone and maybe i was wrong…..and its like…..”God,……where ARE you now? Was all of that REALLY from You? but , yes…..in time, i find out, its still all there….. all being tended by God and waiting for me . How awesome this God of ours IS!!!
Thank you Holley. I was thinking when I was reading your words that some of my dreams have been fulfilled , and some have just come and gone, and at the present I just don’t have any dreams left in me to be honest. BUT! Then I said to the Lord , be it unto me , according to thy word. I have always told the Lord, if He can hang the world on nothing, He can do the impossible for me. So at this time in my life, I believe that the Lord can give me His dream for me, that He wants me to have. Please stand with me for that, because I believe we all need a dream, or a vision. For quite awhile now it’s been hard , so a God given dream would be welcome. May the Lord bless you all, and be to you everything that you need. Love In Christ, Mary Ann.
Bonnie, I’m so glad that you invited Holley to share with us today. How timely her words are! As I read through some of the comments so far, she’s certainly hit a nerve with many. From our human perspective, we dream of what our life might be like. I’ve been one to have goals set and strive to make it happen.
What I’ve learned on my journey of life is that when I submit to God and ask Him to give me His dreams for my life, I don’t have to get so worn out in the process. I want to be where He would have me to be.
My dreams when I was younger were to get married, have three kids and live happily ever after. But God …
Yes, there have been disappointments. But there are so many lessons learned along the way. God’s way is the best! As I quit struggling with Debbie’s will and yield to God’s will, He gives me His desires.
When I allow Him to work in and through me, He gets the glory. He does what I cannot. And I’m finding that is the best dreams to see fulfilled.
Merry Christmas to you both. Bonnie and Holley, you are an inspiration and an encouragement to me.
Blessings and love,
.-= Debbie´s last blog ..Vær Så God =-.
Thanks for getting my heart pondering this morning! MERRY CHRISTMAS!
.-= P.j.´s last blog ..Detail from mural =-.
What a beautiful post – thanks so much for sharing. This prompted me to think about what MY dream is and how I can make that happen. It’s so difficult to keep focus in the midst of everything going on in our lives, isn’t it?
Thanks for the giveaway, too!
I also shared via Twitter:
I knew this year Christmas for my family would not meet the expectations of years past, and it was important to look at the season with new perspective. Traditions had to be left alone, and things switched up so heartache was not staring us in the face. This post reminded me that the very first Christmas was a time of change and unexpected happenings that turned out to be full of wonder. Thank you for this encouragement. As I press forward accepting what God has planned for our coming new year.
Thank you so much for blessing me with this message today.
I am slowly coming to a place of being able to dream again. Thank you for the wonderful words of encouragement!
one of the earlier comments mentioned the man who came to the house with the message that Jesus wasn’t born on the 25th of Dec. this comment reminded me of what i heard a pastor say last Sunday morning when we attended a church where our children/grandchildren currently attend. their pastor said what i have long thought, that what’s important is that we celebrate at all, not the date we do it. i remember a year when i was about 12 yrs. old that our family delayed our Christmas celebration because my oldest brother, who was in the Army at the time, had been stationed overseas, and wasn’t able to be home until nearly New Years. that was the most meaningful Christmas of my childhood.
Christmas is wild, large, dangerous, the ultimate surprise ending and we are afraid of the King-sized love so we shrink wrap it into gifts that will fit under a tree or in a stocking. God’s gift is huge! Thank you for singing it loud!
How wonderful to share the thoughts Holley has shared with us. Thank you for opening a new perspective for me.
God’s timing is always perfect. I often wonder what celebrations would be like if Christmas were in the Spring and Easter in the Winter.
I love that you mentioned New Years, with “God-sized Dreams” instead of resolutions. Resolutions seem like rules for unruly children to break. Dreams seem real. Step out and embrace something new. Cut back the old – things needed to unclutter.
.-= Amber´s last blog ..Unplugged =-.
That decoration is beautiful! Lovin’ this blog.
.-= Genevieve Thul @ Turquoise Gates´s last blog ..Down comes the mallet =-.
I enjoyed the post. It reminds me to dare to dream. God has only good plans for us.
I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans to give you a hope and a future
The ultimate challenge. The wildest wonder. These are beckoning to me “C’mon! God’s adventure for you awaits!” Woohoo! Thanks for God-sized dreams being your heart Holley 😀
.-= Jeri @godsdreamsforme´s last blog ..This Christmas – Definitely More than Just Special =-.
HE never promised that the cross would not get heavy or the hill would not be hard to climb, What I like most is when it is HE is right there with you giving you strength!!
Thank you JESUS…for you are always right there!!!
We serve an amazing GOD…each day is CHRIST-mas if you let it be!!!
My favourite part of this post is the sentence:
” It’s a story of broken expectations, of little being much, of nothing working out the way anyone planned.”
It really spoke to me. We are expecting our third child and had hoped that it would be born before Christmas, and preferably last weekend. But, it didn’t happen. It didn’t work out the way we had planned but, we have now turned out attention to enjoying this special holiday with our two older kids. Trusting that God’s timing is perfect.
I post your comments on facebook often. The past year they come to my yahoo email and I enjoy them very much and share them with friends who have been as blessed as I have by them. This one will be going on my facebook page. We need to be reminded to dream especially as we get older. God plans good for us and not evil, we shouldn’t be limited by our thoughts. Every good and perfect gift comes down from our Father above.
I thank you Holly for the wonderful words you send everyday. I wait to hear your next writing. Life is hectic and not at all what I expect everyday, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. To know that each day is a blessing and that something new will be revealed to me is great.
I have been out of work for 18 months and am waiting to hear if ONE company will hire me. I am patiently waiting to see what God has in store for me next. He is so good to me and this last 18 months has been a blessing to go to Bible Studies and learn more about him has been just what he wanted for me. God is so good and Christmas is just one of the blessings we have from him. Thank you for all the good work you do that helps me go on daily.