Back in the stone age before Beve and I were married, we lived across the sea, in a land where people wore wooden shoes to do their gardening. We wore them to ride our bikes many kilometers a day. It's hard to imagine riding a bike at all these days, let alone wearing actual wooden shoes to do so. But I was young and supple and did all kinds of athletic-ish things I wouldn't consider doing now.
We also wrote notes to each other on a daily basis. We lived in the same community but didn't get to talk as much as we wanted to. Shoot, who am I kidding? We were young and in love and wanted to talk to each other practically to the exclusion of everything else. So we wrote notes to each other first thing in the morning (him) or before we went to bed (me) or after we finished work each afternoon (both of us) and sometimes even when we were sitting right beside each other during lectures. There was always time for a sentence or two, at least. It was the pre-internet, pre-cell-phone equivalent of text messaging and emails. It kept us in constant contact.
In these notes, one of Beve's favorite phrases was, "Let your imagination run wild..." he used this about God loving me, or him loving me, or me imagining what our marriage would be like, how we would minister together, the adventures we'd have. About our life, our future relationships with others.
This phrase, "Let your imagination run wild" has been sprinkled throughout our marriage. We've used it when we've been up against some pretty precarious cliffs. When we decided to jettison our secure life so that I could go to seminary, we used that phrase to dream of how God might meet us, in ways we could figure on our own. We've lived a life richer than our means, if that makes sense, but we've allowed our spiritual imaginations to run wild. And HE has continually been in our dreaming, prayful imaginations. To wit, We have raised three children primarily on a single income teacher's salary. The world would tell us that this isn't possible. But we 'imagined' it, and have had an extraordinary life. I have done all kinds of ministry by simply volunteering. This is wild imagination. Extraordinary.
So last night Beve and I sat at a table at a Nicaraguan restaurant and talked about our dreams for the next phase of our lives. This is fitting, if you have my kind of brain. It was a Lebanese restaurant in New Delhi, India where we sat at first talked about having a future together, about joining our imaginations and letting them run wild together. Do you see what I mean? No? Well, trust me, in my wildly imaginative brain, sitting in an off-the-beaten-gastrological-path restaurant, having such conversations makes them parallel. We marked out what we want the next season to look like, not in particulars, but in general.
No, I'm not going to tell you. It's our treasure. My imagination is running wild with possibilities.
But here's what I want you to think about this day. How do you want your ordinary life to be extraordinary? My little life looks useless, if the world measures it. But it isn't measured that way. And I am confident of my usefulness. God uses me right here in my living room, wearing my back brace, or walking around with my cane. He meets me here, and uses me. If I let my imagine run wild, I can dream of all the ways He might use me in the season ahead when Beve is retired and we get to do it together.
I can hardly wait?
So, what about you?
What do you dream?
And, Beve would want you to know, God loves you MORE than you know. Let your imagination run wild--YOU are the apple of His eye.