I started this blog a long time ago and named it dreaming big dreams since that is what I wanted my life to be about. I wanted to be someone that dreamed big things and allowed God to use her in the those things. I wanted more.
When we started our international adoption in 2007, I was dreaming big and asking God to move me towards him. When we visited Haiti and brought friends with us, we begged God to move their hearts towards the least of these that we visited. When we supported the ministry that was taking care of my kids in Haiti and we rallied funds for them, we begged God to bless them and increase their work there. When people asked me about adoption, I begged God to move their heart if that's what he had for their family.
I was dreaming big.
Then my kids came home and I felt as though my dream left. I felt as though my voice was gone. I was knee deep in the thick of adoption trauma and was no longer an adequate advocate for adoption. I was hurting. My child was hurting. My other kids were hurting. My home was upside down and in my mind my big dreams were gone.
For a while I have felt as though my voice was gone, and lately I have been begging God to show me where he wants me to use it. For a while now, I have struggled with what my life looks like as a mom and how sometimes my fantasy ideas of “truly” changing the world rid me of sleep.
Some days I feel as though I don't dream big, and honestly have forgotten how to do it.
I recently read a few of the first chapters of Jennie Allen's new book Restless, and the tears whelled up instantly in my eyes as I felt as though she was in my head listening to my thoughts. She writes:
“The Spirit of God has dreams for you. And he has given you an abundance of gifts, resources, people, and vision to accomplish his dreams for you.”
To read the words the spirt of God has dreams for you made me weep. Really? Me? I'm so small in this big world that we live in. I'm just a mom (for the record I hate that just, but honestly I feel that way sometimes, even though I know it's not true), what can I do that's so big for you? I want dreams. I want to do something big.
I had lost sight of the fact that God has placed me here for such a time as this and I keep waiting around and wish for another time. A flashier time. I time that seems more important. A time that feels easier. I had forgotten that if I'm alive and breathing that God is using me. I'm here, and want to make it count, because in a flash of an eye I'll be gone.
I feel like my restlessness is not a feeling that just I am feeling. I feel like there are women all around that are in the midst of dealing with this feeling of “is this it?”.
Friends, I want to know his word, and know the needs around me and go after them. I want to beg God for big dreams and let him be the judge of how big they are, and not the world. I want to not look around me and wish I had her gifts, or could write like her, or could juggle all those gifts like her, or could speak like her. I want to be ME and do what GOD has dreamed for me.
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.” I Cor 2.9
I'm ready to start dreaming big dreams again. Wanna join me?
I'm grateful to Jennie and her ministry and I'd love to bless 5 of you with copies to her new book! Enter below:
Jennie Allen writes in Restless: Because You Were Made for More, “We are called to dream but we’re afraid to. But because we are called, when we don’t act on it we become restless—restless to find purpose, to make a difference in the world, to matter.” What if discovering God’s unique calling for your life is your greatest responsibility, second only to knowing and loving God? Your restlessness may very well be a divine invitation to purpose, calling and life.
Yes I feel a bit restless. I’ve been that way for a while; I’ve just been actively ‘in it’ … waiting to hear from the Lord about it!
I shared on FB!
I’ve been feeling this way for a while too. I just haven’t had the courage to actually say it. I can’t wait to read Jennie’s book. I’m gonna go through it with one of my friends.
This feeling has been boiling up inside of me, it is like I am on
the edge of something really big but I am unsure and I cannot see it.
I think its insightful to connect the restlessness with not fulfilling what you are created for. I am restless. I have not been dreaming but over the past year I’ve started to recognize the need to and the want to.
I’m in the middle of launching a business – a long-time dream of mine! Restless will be key in helping others understanding God’s purpose woven throughout their lives and how to use those threads to live for Him every day in every pursuit.
Shared with my Twitter followers!
Yes restless with anticipation knowing I can do so much for His glory!
Shared on Facebook!
Trying to find my next path
As a mom of one little girl, about to be two come mid-February, I’ve been struggling with the “I’m just a mom” syndrome lately too. Sometimes I wonder what kind of dreams, if any, could really be deep inside of me. I’m excited to read this book!
Thanks for sharing Jamie! I can totally relate! Can’t wait to read the book!
Absolutely feel this way! I’m waiting on my 3rd baby to be born and feel like I’m loosing track of what Jesus has for me each day. This is wonderful encouragement.
I shared on fb
I fight feeling restless quite often. I love my life, but I so want to help others.
Yes. Just yes. I’m not sure when I stopped dreaming, but I am ready to start again.
I love that Holly … “actively in it”
You guys will love it!
I love that Erin! YOu don’t need to see it … just keep moving towards it!
Yippee April! I have been fighting that “just a mom” syndrome for almost 10 years now. Stay in the fight with me!
Love this post, Jamie. Well written & so very true! “I want to beg God for big dreams and let him be the judge of how big they are, and not the world.” – AWESOME. Thank you for sharing this!
Oh my… I feel like you are speaking directly to me. I am restless… very restless!
Love this post Jamie, and it was great meeting you briefly last night! I love what you said about dreaming and letting God be the judge of how big they are, and not the world. I’ve been feeling restless- partially because I’m not fully living out whatever it is God has for me, but also I think partially because I too often stack myself up against the world and believe I’m not enough.
I also shared on FB! 🙂
I do feel restless in some areas, particularly with a few dreams I have.
I shared about this giveaway on twitter!
I have been feeling this for the past year or so. Praying that God moves me in a direction where my big dreams and ideas can become a reality! I love your blog and this little corner of encouragement!
I shared this on Facebook AND Twitter!!!
Me too!! I’m restless as we continue in this new adventure in College Station!!!
Very restless!! 3 years of marriage in a garage apt will do that to you! I’m trying to be content with where God has us right now! But I’m excited for the next phase: growing a family and house! I want to be able to host my coworkers more often (need more space!).
I shared in Twitter and Facebook!
Being a care giver to my chronically ill husband is much like being a parent so I can relate to much of what you said. Just last night I was questioning why I have to be the one to do what I do. Then I realized that God has me here for a reason & I will continue to praise Him.
I love this! Thanks for being so transparent
I love this and I would love to win a copy of restless.
I feel like you wrote this post just for me! This last year was a difficult one. Struggling with wanting more for my life and not knowing what exactly that is or where to start. And part of that, unfortunately, comes from the “I’m just a mommy” feeling. Can’t wait to read her book!
Shared on Twitter! I am definitely feeling restless for what God has next for me. Last year was all about a BIG call from God and a BIG step of obedience (a trip halfway around the world!), and now that it’s over I’m restless to figure out what to do now.
My husband and I have both been feeling restless lately. We would love to move but don’t have any real reason to. We’re praying right now that God would show us what’s best for us at this point in our lives.
I’m restless with my job – longing to stay at home with my babies, but knowing our family needs me to work right now too.
I shared on twitter
I feel restless due to an unpredictable schedule and uncertain future. I long to settle in to what God has next for me.
I was just having this conversation with a co-worker today and would love to gift him with this book!
I am probably just one of many young women who visits your blog specifically to see someone living out MY dream. I’m an unmarried 22 year-old, but you are one of my heroes! God led me to your blog randomly, and it has encouraged me so much. Your honesty, heart for God, and amazing family is life-giving. My heart is for adoption, and I regularly visit this website to hear the accounts of a world-changer — that’s you! Amazing work for the kingdom is done everyday in your home. Your life is an act of spiritual warfare because everyday that you LOVE your children you erase the lie that any child is unwanted. What a work! Amazing. Truly. I can’t imagine how hard it is, but you have prayer warriors! There is fruit for generations to come for what you are sowing now.Dream bigger dreams with our amazing God! But, don’t forget that what you are doing now is INCREDIBLE.
As a creative person that is also in the throes of raising three small children, I often feel restless. I know my purpose as a mom is not to be taken lightly and my word for 2014 is freedom. Freedom in Christ to pursue dreams and become a better mother, wife, friend, but to not be discouraged when I fail because my approval is found in Him.
Would love this. Just put in a word at our local bookstore that they need to order a bunch. 🙂
Yes! Sometimes I feel stuck. But to unleash the woman who God created me to be? It’s kind of incredible. I think wrestling with our restlessness is what it means to live in the tension of “now” and “not yet.”
Jessica – Thank you friend. Your words were so sweet to me today!
love you lindsey!
Jamie~ I just had to share the GodThing that happened this morning. I’m holed up here in cold South Dakota as I prep to speak for a women’s retreat Feb. 22. I came across your blog TOTALLY by accident. (I followed a tweet from another friend.) My talk for the women is on dreams. The dreams God has for them…the things that inspire them, the calling He’s holding out for them. I’ll be encouraging them to check out your blog!
PS. We go to Haiti for short term missions trips. We helped with a church/home in Port’AuPrince. Now we’ve been focusing on a hospital on the island of LaGonave (right off of Haiti.) I agree with your son…I like the rice and beans!
Have a great day sister!! (Remember…there’s divine in the grind—even if its sheets full of pee.) 🙂
Cindy – glad you found my blog!!! I imagine South Dakota is freezing. It was freezing here earlier in the week but today it’s beautiful. Go figure! It’s Texas for you!
Love following God’s dreams for you and love sharing that with women. Love our love for Haiti too!!!