Have you held a bubble on your hand lately? Did it linger for long?
I love the way bubbles glisten and reflect so many colors. They're kind of like dreams aren't they? Full of life and hope and not always predictable.
The slightest breeze or movement can send the bubble drifting out of reach. The slightest pressure can turn the bubble to sticky drips.
Bubbles can also be extremely resilient. They can take up space, and even create discomfort. Students, of all ages, have loved this experiment, adding salt/mentos/poprocks to soda. Teachers use it to teach that gas takes up space. (And to explain gassy tummies after eating pizza and drinking soda.) The principle is the same with our dream bubbles.
For seventeen years I literally dreamed about returning to college to complete a degree in teaching. I loved being a wife and a mother, but that pesky dream wouldn't let me go. It was taking up space.
When James started kindergarten, I started back to school. Once in a while, the dream of becoming a teacher was pretty uncomfortable. Managing tons of homework, working part-time, and trying to be the best wife and mother I could for my family was hard work. There were lots of times when I thought about letting my uncomfortable dream float away.
The Apostle Paul certainly understood what it's like to be trying to do right, and things turning out wrong. And yet he managed to write encouragement to the folks at Philippi while he was sitting in prison: "11 Not that I complain of want; for I have learned, in whatever state I am, to be content. 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound; in any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and want. 13 I can do all things in him who strengthens me." (Philippians 4:11-13)
I'll admit on this side, it's a lot easier to recognize how God's hand and timing were always at work in the fulfillment of my dream. At times in the midst of the moment, it felt like He wasn't interested. And my dream surely didn't turn out quite like I hoped it would. IT TURNED OUT MUCH BETTER!
Sometimes when a bubble bursts, (or a dream doesn't turn out like we'd hoped), the cool, soothing drip on our hands is better than we could have ever imagined. I was sorely disappointed for a long time about not getting into the classroom sooner, but I wouldn't trade anything for my friend, Lynnette.