Friday Arts Day: with John Pavlovitz

This is a post by John Pavlovitz originally posted on Johns Blog MAY 5, 2015

John is a pastor, blogger and father of two, (Noah and Selah), and husband of one (Jennifer); a 17-year ministry veteran, specialising in trying to live-out the red letters of Jesus.

Don’t Outgrow your Dreams.

There’s a lot that I can’t do. 

I’m painfully aware of this. 

Fix things, enjoy small talk, sleep through the night without using the bathroom a dozen times, figure out middle school math, have bangs…

The older I get the longer that list seems to become; the list of things I can’t do.

I think most of us who find ourselves afflicted with the sometimes terrible disease called Adulthood understand this. Over time we’ve gotten pretty good at cataloging our deficiencies, documenting our flaws, and seeing even the most microscopic holes in our abilities from a mile away.

We’ve long stopped being our own biggest fans and have instead taken up residence as chief personal critics.

We’re seasoned experts at self-malignment.

We weren’t always this way though.

I have a 5-year old daughter who can do everything well. Just ask her.

Are you an artist? Yep.

Are you a dancer? Of course.

Can you sing? Duh!

Are you funny? Hysterical.

Are you smart? Mmhm.

And on and on and on.

Most children are this way. They haven’t learned to disqualify themselves from things yet. They haven’t learned that you have to be good at something to do it. 

fingerpainting fun

Nothing has been crossed off the list. 

They haven’t shelved their dreams yet. 

There is a palpable sense of possibility in the eyes of a child. It’s all right there. It’s all in play. It’s all reachable. 

Inside their heads lives a loud, persistent voice that yells out to thunderous applause, “There is joy and wonder and amazingness all around me and I am worthy of it all!”

I miss that. 

I miss the sure, involuntary confidence that automatically believes in the best of myself.

I miss a mind overflowing with the things that I can do, with all of the good stuff that I am.

I wonder if you miss it too.

I wonder if you have forgotten what it was like to feel unstoppable, beautiful, valuable, capable, lovable.

I wonder if you still remember what it was like to think that you were pretty darn great just as you were.

I wonder if you still believe that you are a singer simply because you like to sing, or a dancer just because it gives you joy to dance, or an artist just because you love how the paint squishes between your fingers.

I see so many adults who have outgrown the giddy starstruck awe of their simple existence; who no longer recognize the greatness or the goodness in them anymore.

I see so many little kids who grew-up and just stopped dreaming.

They let the rejection of other people or their perceived failures or their actual failures rewrite their stories into something far less fantastic than their young minds dared to consider. 

Maybe that’s not you. Maybe you’re fine. Maybe you’re one of the fortunate ones who still finds confidence easy and hope plentiful.

Maybe you still believe that you can do everything well. 

If not, well maybe you just need someone to remind you.

Maybe you need someone to tell you that there is still joy and wonder and amazingness all around you—and you are worthy of it all.

There is. 

You are.

Big people, don’t forfeit the joy that you were born with now that you’re big.

Don’t lose that little people magic that keeps you wide-eyed and somersaulting and looking forward.

Don’t forget what possibility and expectancy feel like, even when you look in the mirror.

Now that you’ve grown-up, don’t outgrow your dreams.

Dream Big card with colorful background with defocused lights

You can read more of John’s posts by clicking this link.

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