When I was seventeen, I made a pact with a friend that we would take a trip to the USA together. The years passed and every year there was a legitimate reason why she couldn't go. I wasn't worried, I just thought that one of these years we would go.
When I hit the grand age of twenty it struck me that our trip was never actually going to materialize. I didn't want a pipe dream, I wanted an adventure, I wanted to live life. I realized in that moment that I was in control of my life. I suddenly understood that it was not someone else's responsibility to make life happen for me. So, if I really wanted to see America, I would just need to go by myself.
...And so I did.
I booked a flight to Ohio and promised my parents I would call when I got there. Off I went, terrified but not regretful. Waking up very early the first morning, I stood in-front of the window looking at the morning mist hanging over the pond. I pinched myself, mesmerized by a land that had only existed in my dreams. It was real and I had made it happen.
It was the best summer of my life. I learned a lot, grew a lot, made mistakes, made amazing friends and fell in love with a country. It changed me forever and expanded my capacity and my courage. I knew then that I could do anything I wanted. I never waited for again for a somebody to do a something.
Since then, my life has been a series of adventures around the world; India, Europe, Central America and all across the United States. Has it always been easy? No, far from it! There was the night that I walked through Brooklyn at 4am, with just a prayer to look after me. Or the time I ended up having to run an orphanage with not a clue. There have been a dozen brushes with customs and more than my fair share of denied visas. Then all the usual travelers trials, going without sleep for days, navigating foreign medical situations and leaving friends in every place you go. I have had the most awesome experiences, met the most amazing people and had God help me in the most profound ways. I would never have had this life if I had never walked out my front door, single. Single life is an opportunity not a disqualification.
It's a dangerous business...going out of your door...You step into the Road, and...there is no knowing where you might be swept off to.
It may not be travel. It may be giving yourself permission to excel in your career, build a home, get a dog, or invest all your liquid assets in shoes. The point is, it's your life to live, today. What else are you missing out on while you're missing out on love? When love is all you want and you couldn't care two straws about anything else it can be a painful life. But, believe it or not there are other dreams in you too. You just need to find them.
Ask God what are the dreams that he wrapped you around. What were the dreams you had as a child? What are the new dreams that are in you to dream? Give yourself permission to dream outrageously, because God has. With his help, sit down and write out 100 dreams in one sitting. Which ones is it time for?
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you imagined.
One thing is true. There is not a day in your life that God doesn't have a dream for.
I sometimes look forward to future days adventuring with someone strong enough to carry my luggage, to shared memories and wonders. mostly, I am grateful that I get the freedom to adventure wherever I dream of going and doing all that is in me to do. Sometimes this is coffee and a good book, sometimes this is a rickshaw ride beside the Indian Ocean. Life is an adventure. Don't miss it waiting for it to come.