“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.”–Ashley Smith
Everyone has dreams they want to pursue—no matter how big or small they are. Whether they realize what their dreams are or not, we all have them. Maybe you don’t believe me or maybe you do, but I know this to be true. I remember a time when I did not think I had dreams or things I wanted to do with my life. I told myself I couldn’t think of anything. But in reality, the dreams I had felt too big for me to attain and so I immediately disregarded them. Because of this, when people tell me they have no dreams, I do not believe them for one little second. I was that person once and I know if I could have dreams, then so could you.
One time, I told someone, “I do not know what I wanted to do with my life.” This person replied, “Yes, you do. You just have not realized it yet.” For some reason, those words really stuck with me. And I think she was right.
The truth was, I did know what I wanted to do, but it just didn’t seem possible to me. I thought, “What I want is unattainable, so why bother?” I was immediately telling myself I never would amount to much and that I could never achieve those dreams.
However, over the years, I came to realize that maybe my dreams were there for a reason. I reminded myself once again that all things are possible with God. Maybe it is unattainable for me, but it is not unattainable when God is on my side. I realized the only one truly holding me back was myself.
I am not going to lie and say my life is all figured out or that I know exactly what I am doing all the time. I am not saying dreams are easy to attain or that every dream we have will be realized. But I am saying we will never know how far we can go if we never try.
It is for that reason I have continued to strive to do my best almost everyday to keep moving towards my dreams.
So how do you find out what your dreams are?
I don’t know if this will be helpful for anyone, but I will share how I realized mine:
It all started right after a very dark time for me. I saw no hope for the future, could not pass a day without crying myself to sleep, and could only see grey. I prayed and spoke God’s word over my life, desperate to see Him pull me out of my slump. For a while, it seemed nothing was happening. Then God dropped a quote from the Disney movie “Mulan” into my heart, almost like a promise: “The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.” I held onto that quote like someone who was parched and left out in a desert would hold onto a flask of water that dropped suddenly from the sky. Thinking back on that time, it is very interesting to me how God chose to pull me out of my slump. Because how God pulled me out of it was from giving me a Disney quote and in helping me realize the things that brought me joy.
Truly what pulled me out was appreciating the small moments of joy I would occasionally experience, no matter where it came from. I soaked them in and thanked God for giving me those moments. Most of them were small things, some were bigger.
My relationship with my family. My brothers. The encouraging words of friends. My love for Asian culture. My love for fantasy. Light. Studio Ghibli inspired music. Writing. Stories. I just began noticing those small moments and the things that caused the joy. Then, the thought occurred to me one day of how much I would love to live in Asia and teach English.
Bam! I realized a dream I had but had disregarded because I thought I was not brave enough to achieve it.
While I was reading and listening to inspiring messages, I stumbled across the YouTuber Lavendaire. I found her YouTube videos to be quite encouraging and inspiring. She shares lots of exercises to help people find their “Dream Life” and become an “artist of life.” The reason I share this is because I really do feel her YouTube channel helped me find the courage to go after my dreams along with the feeling of God urging me to step out.
A video for reference:
One of those exercises was to sit down with a piece of paper and pencil and think. Think about what you would want to do if you had no limits on what you could do. Write those down. It doesn’t matter what it is. Write it down. It was through this exercise I came to realize some more desires I had disregarded. I allowed myself to dream wildly. No matter how ridiculous and impossible it seemed. I wrote it down.
Then I felt God urge me to pursue the dream to teach in Asia. My heart quaked at the idea but I thought it did not hurt to research about it. After researching, I decided South Korea would be best. I found a recruiting company. Then I just let the idea roll around in my head for a few months as I prayed about it. Finally, I decided it did not hurt to apply for the recruiting company. It was all those small steps that led me to spending a whole twelve months in Daegu, South Korea and I do not regret a moment of it.
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”–Arthur Ashe
Doing so showed me that with God I could achieve those dreams I had. After realizing this, I have since been, small step by small step, moving towards those dreams, all the while listening to God’s leading. That is what led me to starting this blog—even if I have not been the best at keeping up with it. That is what led me to dance in the professional ballet company. That is what is leading me now. I believe He placed these dreams in my heart for a reason.
Please take all of this with a grain of salt. Although I think dreams are an important part of our lives, I believe the only way we can ever be satisfied and at peace with where we are at now is when we have a relationship with God and are in line with His plan for our lives. Remember this when you are pursuing and make sure it truly is something God is leading you to do.
I hope by showing what I have been learning and my process, I am able to help someone else who is struggling like I was. I would love to be the person God uses to bring light and hope back to someone’s life. I write these posts as if I am writing to the me who withdrew into her shell and cried all the time and who could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. I hope it reaches someone in some small place in their heart.
Dream wildly and then go after it!
Blessings to everyone!
P.S. Feel free to comment some of those dreams, big or small, that you have! I would love to hear from you.
—The Adversity Rose—
DREAM. PURSUE. EXPERIENCE. GROW.
This blog will cover travel, pursuing dreams, and personal growth.