Contending For The Dream
“so many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we summon the will, they soon become inevitable” – Christopher Reeve
Contend [verb]: to assert or maintain, to struggle for, to insist, to declare, to take on, to strive in contest or rivalry of, to defend and preserve
In the opening message of Sistas 2017, Ps Maree encouraged us not to accept defeat but rather to make the decision to relentlessly contend for our dreams: “if we truly did understand and believe what lies within us—the possibilities, the potential, the probabilities—we would experience the extraordinary, the miraculous, the exceptional, the unprecedented in our lives.”
God has a dream for each one of us and He has placed dreams within us, but we need to act on our dreams. They will not happen if we passively wait—sometimes caring, sometimes not. Contention is required because there is something great in you that is threatening to the enemy; God has a dream for us and the enemy longs to thwart it.
The enemy’s plan of action is to isolate us and confuse us, making us think we’re alone in what we’re experiencing and causing us to distance ourselves from God rather than push into Him at the time we need Him most. The reality is that proximity to God is the key to contending for our dreams and overcoming opposition to them.
Scripture continually reminds us to fuel our faith—not wavering, but surrendering our every care to God:
“Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude. Tell him every detail of your life, then God’s wonderful peace that transcends human understanding will make the answers known to you through Jesus Christ. So keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is authentic and real, honorable and admirable, beautiful and respectful, pure and holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God, praising him always” – Philippians 4:6-8 (TPT)
For further reflection:
- The meanings of the word “contend” suggest boldness, certainty, faith, and persistence.
What do you think contributes to your persistence, or lack of it, in pursuing your dreams?
Which area of your life is most difficult to contend for? Why do you think this is?
- Ps Maree reminds us that the power of choice is ours. She encourages us to step outside the tent of our past and present circumstances and look up, as Abraham did in Genesis 15:1-6; to make the choice to trust God, to step out, to reset our thinking so it is aligned with the greatness and vastness of what He sees.
Have you ever had a moment, like the one in the life of Abraham, in which you were brought outside the confines of your thinking and overwhelmed by the vastness of God’s plans for you? Have you remained there or retreated back into the tent?
- At the close of her message, Ps Maree recounts the testimony of someone within the church who went through a season of having to contend for her dream:
“Ultimately God knows what I really need. He dreamt my dreams before I even drew my first breath. And if that’s the case, I need to be diligent in stewarding those dreams […] And I continue to walk the road of trusting, knowing that if He dreamt it first, then He cares enough about it. So, hand in hand, we can and—I believe—we will see them come to life together.”
Read Ephesians 3:20 in the Amplified version. How does knowing that God first dreamt your dreams affect the way you approach them?
The Sistas Team