You have a dream.
It’s bigger than anything you could imagine.
You’re holding on tight, but waiting is wearing you thin.
You don’t want to give up, but the lies are fierce.
You’re not worthy to carry this dream.
You don’t have what it takes for a dream this size.
Don’t get your hopes up, it’s never going to happen.
The overwhelming sense of failure and uncertainty leaves you wondering if you should let it go.
You’re not alone.
Hannah had a dream.
She longed for the day to hold a baby in her arms that she could call her own.
But there was one problem: She was barren.
In the natural her dream was impossible. A dead dream.
Even those around her thought so.
Every year she was required to go to the Tabernacle and worship and participate in a sacrificial meal.
And every year she could look forward to humiliation and mockery.
Peninnah, Elkanah’s other wife, would taunt her and make fun of her barren situation.
Each time, Hannah would cry and refuse to eat.
I’m sure she wondered if her dream would ever become a reality.
Should she keep holding on to something that seemed dead?
As much as she wanted to let go, she just couldn’t.
So she did something about it.
And we can too!
3 Responses to Dead Dreams
Once after a sacrificial meal at Shiloh, Hannah got up and went to pray. 1 Samuel 1:9 NLT (emphasis mine)
Although we aren’t given details about Hannah’s thoughts before she goes out to pray, I can imagine what they could have been.
Should I hold on to this dream if it’s never going to come to pass?
Why are other people living their dreams, but I’m stuck in a dead end?
Is God hearing my constant pleas for this dream?
Rather than let her thoughts consume her, Hannah got up.
The word got up here is the word quwm.
It means to rise up, become powerful, to stand, to be fixed, to be fulfilled, or to persist.
Hannah made the choice to pursue her God when her dream seemed dead. She mustered up her strength and pressed in.
I can be honest and say when I’m worn out from waiting, I rarely want to rise up. On the contrary, I usually want to hide and sulk.
But that is what the enemy wants.
He wants us to give up before the breakthrough.
When our dreams seem impossible, we have a choice. We can back down or rise up.
Pray & Get Real with God
Sometimes when life gets messy, we have to get it all out.
Rather than going to one of her friends or her husband, Hannah got real with God.
Hannah was in deep anguish, crying bitterly as she prayed to the Lord. 1 Samuel 1:10 NLT
She was so distraught, Eli, the priest, scolded her because he thought she was drunk.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve been here before.
Authentic, ugly cry, “what in the world is wrong with this girl” type prayers.
She had to get real with God.
We have to get real with God.
When things aren’t going the way we expect and our dreams seem dead, we don’t have to pretend that we’re happy about it. God knows how we really feel anyway.
When we go to Him and “get real” it provides an opportunity for Him to comfort us and to speak to us.
In fact, it was in this moment, as she poured out her heart that God gave her a word of encouragement.
I believe He wants to do the same for us.
Don’t Give Up in the Wait
Hannah’s story is not just one about God answering a prayer. It is also about God’s deliverance for a people.
God used Hannah’s cry for a child to answer a greater need, which was deliverance for Israel.
Like Hannah, Israel had been spiritually barren for awhile. (1 Samuel 3:1)
As Hannah interceded for a child, God was providing not just for her but for Israel as well.
Many times we miss the bigger picture of what God is doing.
We have trouble seeing past our own desires.
God’s timing is perfect.
If our dreams aren’t coming to pass right now, it’s for a purpose.
It could be that we are part of a bigger plan that includes a blessing not just for us, but for those around us as well.
What dream do you have that seems impossible? Are you getting worn out in the waiting?
Friend, God is not ignoring you! He loves you and wants to fulfill your dreams more than you want them fulfilled. But more than that He has a plan and a purpose for you. His timing is wrapped up in that purpose. When you feel like you’re on the verge of quitting, make a choice to rise up, pray and get real with God and keep pressing forward. God will meet you right where you are!