In my hands I hold the dreams of 85 children. These papers feel quite holy. Last night when I was semi freaking out (that’s an understatement) about what to preach on this morning, (my topic was God’s purpose for their life) my good friend had an idea. He suggested giving all of the children a piece of a paper and a pen, and asking them to write down their dreams. I am so thankful God has put wise people into my life!
After I told the children about how God chose David to be king, even though he was a simple, ordinary, typical boy, I asked the kids what their dreams and their desires were. I handed out the pens and papers and told them that they could draw or write what they wanted their life to be. It took about a half an hour for them to complete the exercise, and I watched as their eyes grew wide with anticipation, as some of the younger one’s hands clapped with excitement, and as they carefully uncapped the pens and wrote their heart-filled ambitions on the yellow card stock in front of them.
I think Africa is making me emotional or soft or something. As the minutes passed by and the papers started to collect in the palms of my hands, I fought to hold back tears. Here I was, in the center of a concrete room, watching children who were allowed to freely dream. Who were allowed to think beyond the scope of imagination, even for a few brief moments. One by one the papers piled, the pens were put away, and a circle of children was formed.
I sat in the center, the stack of papers beside me.
"We’re going to pray." I told them. "Because we believe in a God who can do the impossible. We believe in a God who can fulfill each one of these dreams."
I prayed in English, though the translator did not translate, and they did not understand me, they were beaming as I looked up at them after my prayer. I asked them if they wanted to pray over their dreams too. The littlest one - I think he is 4 - jumped up, ran over to me and placed his chubby little four-year-old hand on the pages. He prayed over those dreams like there was no tomorrow. I learned that four year old’s can fervently pray. Again, I fought back tears (I seriously am becoming a cry baby), and I encouraged more kids to come pray over their dreams. More came and more prayed. And I was blessed to be in a room with 85 children who believed with such passion that God has given them dreams for a reason.
These are their dreams:
4 dreams to be soccer players 3 dreams to be rich 1 dream to be an artist 1 dream to work in an office 8 dreams to be teachers 1 dream to be a business man 6 dreams to be pastors 11 dreams to be pilots 14 dreams to be doctors 5 dreams to be soldiers 9 dreams to be nurses 1 dream to be a bank officer 1 dream to be a parent 1 dream to be a minister in government 1 dream to be a construction worker 2 dreams to be engineers 2 dreams to be mechanics 1 dream to be a carpenter 4 dreams to be singers 6 dreams to be drivers 2 dreams to be superheroes 2 dreams to be kings 4 dreams to be the President 3 dreams to be policemen 1 dream to help the helpless 1 dream to be a queen 2 dreams to be policewomen 1 dream to be a cashier 1 dream to lead others in industry 1 dream to be a captain of a ship 1 dream to be a defender of human rights 9 dreams that are still nestled inside of their hearts
I told these beautiful children that I will take their dreams, go home to Canada and pray over them. I told them I would ask my family and friends to pray along with me. I hope you choose to walk with me in this.
I, for one, am a huge believer in dreams. And I think God is too. Are you?