An Encouraging Word — Accomplishing our dreams

Everyone who asks, receives; the one who seeks finds. Matthew 7:7

Fr. Ron Knott.2012-wOne of the things I like to do when I am home for an extended period of time is clean house. I don’t actually like doing the cleaning, I just like having a clean house. House cleaning always turns up a treasure or two.

Recently, I came across something I wrote back in the 1980s, and even printed up on cards, when I was pastor of our cathedral. I entitled it “The Dream:”  

“Translating a dream into reality takes great courage. Doubt is a constant enemy. When doubt reigns, there is a strong temptation to let go of part of the dream as a way of resolving inevitable tensions. Success depends on the ability to remain enthusiastic, focused and purposeful to the end.”

Many people are held back from accomplishing their dreams by the circle of acquaintances who surround them. When they set out to exert themselves in some new direction, they often find themselves confronted by rejection or disapproval that leads them to adjusting themselves to fit whatever status quo that circle deems most favorable. Their compliance is rewarded and their failure to comply is punished. Their very need for love and acceptance becomes the vehicle of their subjection.

When we are held back by the need of others for us not to change, we must learn to stand up and follow our own instincts. When others protest our changing, it’s usually  not that they don’t want us to change, they just want us to change to meet their needs, not ours.

The truth of the matter is, a small number will like us, a small number will dislike us, and the vast majority won’t care one way or the other.

Other people are held back from accomplishing their dreams by self-doubt. When they set out to exert themselves in some new direction, they often are confronted by a whiny little inner voice that tells them to back off because they are not the type to do great things. Giving into self-doubt and fear are good ways of sabotaging their own efforts as a way of resolving the inevitable tensions that come with dreaming big. When they devote themselves to risk-taking, they must stand up to their own cowardice and need for comfort, multiple times.

Still others are held back from accomplishing their dreams by their inability to ask for help. The refusal to ask for help is a kind of sickness in itself. Such people have come to believe that no one’s help is worth the price in vulnerability it will cost them. People seem naturally to resist help and advice, with its implications of their shortcomings, but asking is the world’s most powerful and neglected secret to success.

One of the great surprises of life is to find out that God is waiting to grant our wishes and there are plenty of people who will gladly give us a hand if we only ask.

 Father J. Ronald Knott

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