No more daydreaming

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They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up into heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come in the same way that you have seen Him going into heaven.” – Acts 1:11

photo credit: Creation Swap user Jared Rarick

I don’t know what your situation looks like right now. Maybe it’s bleak. Maybe it’s tough. Maybe there’s no hope, and you don’t know what your next step needs to be. Maybe your plans, and where you want to be in life, haven’t panned out.

Maybe you are undervalued, overworked, and underpaid. Maybe you aren’t appreciated at home. Maybe your “best” still isn’t good enough.

In these moments, it’s easy to wish our life away. It’s easy to complain, sulk, and be angry that life’s not how we want it to be.

And if you find yourself wishing your life away, do you know what’ll happen? You’ll wish it away. Life will pass you by, and you’ll be caught for years just staring into outer space, going nowhere.

That’s what the men in Acts 1:11 were doing. They were staring up into the sky, frozen and ready to wait right there until Jesus returned. They were completely unproductive and unmotivated. They had watched Jesus teach and heal, then be crucified on a cross. He died, was buried, then resurrected and ascended to heaven. They had placed their hopes on Jesus, and he’d left them. I can expect that they were frustrated, confused, and worried. Their Hope and their Promise was gone.

And the problem was that before Jesus would return there was still work to do.

Don’t get caught daydreaming your way out of where you are. Don’t want things to just be over. God’s got work for you to do now. People to invest in and gifts to give. Missions to fulfill and communities to transform. Relationships to heal and hope to give.

There Ain’t No Easy Way Out

Quit looking for the easy way out. Maybe there’s not one. Maybe God’s not going to swoop in and supernaturally make life easy for you. Maybe His plan isn’t to heal you of that disease. Maybe His plan isn’t to reconcile that relationship. Maybe His plan isn’t to make you financially secure.

Maybe, though, just maybe…His plan is to comfort you through it. And give you hope and mercy and grace. And use you to breath life and hope into someone else. (2 Corinthians 1:3-7)

Question: Ever been caught daydreaming?

*Photo credit: Creation Swap user Jared Rarick

 

Christ follower, husband, father, writer, small groups pastor at Saddleback Community Church. Communications director for the Small Group Network.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • http://www.jasonvana.com Jason Vana

    I’m a huge daydreamer. It’s one of my strengths (visioning, dreaming, thinking bigger) but also one of my biggest weaknesses – because it’s easier to dream about things being better than actually doing work to make them better. But I’m doing the work now, taking the steps to make sure the dreams I’m dreaming actually become reality.

  • http://thomasmarkzuniga.com TMZ

    I daydream constantly, fantasizing about a future where I’m doing x, or living in y with z. I know God’s been faithful in my past and will certainly be that in my future, but I’m still striving to uncover what my purpose for today is. Love that disciples-staring-up example from Scripture, because it’s so apt for us to get busy today.

  • http://www.arnyslight.wordpress.com Arnyslight

    “Maybe God’s not going to swoop in and supernaturally make life easy for you. Maybe His plan isn’t to heal you of that disease. Maybe His plan isn’t to reconcile that relationship. Maybe His plan isn’t to make you financially secure.”

    His Plan and Promise is to be with us until the end of the world! …he will never leave us or forsake us!

    David said, that even if his mother and father abandoned him…the Lord would NEVER abandon us!

    • http://www.benreed.net Ben Reed

      Preach it, Arny!

  • http://www.robshep.com Rob Shepherd

    Well played. Great thoughts as always! I am guilty of this. Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    I think some daydreaming is OK, it turns bad when it becomes unproductive. Great points. I also find myself daydreaming at times.

    • http://www.benreed.net Ben Reed

      Agreed…it’s the unproductive part that gets me every time.

  • Sara

    I just found this post while googling. Yes, I’m one of those who have been heavily day-dreaming since early childhood – just slip into day-dream mode without even realizing. Had been struggling to stop this for a decade or so (I started trying to stop it sometime after entering college. Till then, I could, by God’s Grace, handle academics well inspite of wasting a whole lot of time dreaming. College needed more focus, and that’s when I realized I had to stop dreaming & wasting time). Most of the struggle was futile or had very short term results. Of late, either age or God’s timing or switching to healthy, organic food or some realizations has been having some effect, and I can see things more clearly, and am able to ‘catch’ myself more successfully than ever. Well, and I had come across another article which said that maladaptive DD is mostly a result of trauma in childhood – which I think does have some truth in it. I used to be very very sensitive child (and adult also..). Any little word/remark/look/incident/anything would hurt me so much (I’m still a bit like that), and that ‘hurt’ feeling would be really too much for me to bear. I would be having physical manifestations of those hurt feelings – really feeling heavy at the chest, really have churnings in my stomach etc, and I would be almost immobilized for the rest of the day. Sleep would relieve me of the physical symptoms, but my mind would still be numb/inactive. I think, in order to protect itself from that pain, the body (the brain rather) adapted by sending me into a ‘virtual’ world where everything is fine. And that crystalizes into maladaptive DD. That’s my conclusion from personal experience & from the internet article. And one big step to solving this is to simply realize that your DD is a result of some trauma & the habit has evolved from some childhood trauma, and stop cursing yourself for ‘slipping’ into DD mode. Atleast, that’s my experience.

    • Sara

      I mean, realizing that your DD’ing is a kind of adaptation to a hurting thing will make you better at handling it. I didn’t mean “go easy on yourself & go on DD’ing, it is just response to trauma, so carry on” – no, it would help you catch the root of the problem, and handling the problem gets easier actually. You can feel it. I hope I’m clear.