This week our God-sized dream assignment from Holley was to "find a God-sized dream story that inspires you and share it with us."
I thought about this off and on all week but nothing came to mind. Then just yesterday I walked into the kitchen where my kids were laughing and watching a video from five years ago. All of a sudden I had my story.
When my son was in second grade, he had a dream. He wanted to be JoJo in Seussical the Musical, which his theater class was going to perform that Spring.
I learned about his dream one day as he climbed into our minivan after school, chattering happily in his high, piping seven-year old voice.
“Mama! Our teacher passed out audition information today. And look! See this? This is the part I want to try out for.”
He pulled a wrinkled paper from his backpack and passed it to me.
Skimming the lines of text, this sentence leapt off the page: This role will require much memorization of lines and performing multiple solo numbers.
Immediately I saw a huge problem: my son didn’t do much singing. I knew he could memorize incredible amounts of information, but singing solos? Did he even know what that meant? That he would be singing, all by himself?! Incredulous, I looked over at him. With his legs kicking, feet hitting his backpack rhythmically, he sat turned toward me, eyes expectantly waiting for my reaction.
There are many moments as a parent where I wish for a do-over.
“Um, are you sure you really want to try out for JoJo? This says you need to do a lot of singing and not just singing, but solos! Singing by yourself! I’m not sure that is a good idea. Is there another part you could try for?”
I simply couldn’t comprehend that here was my little seven-year old saying that he was going to audition for one of the biggest parts in the whole show. Looking back, I know that my answer came from my own insecurity about the sound of my voice and fear of performing in front of people. In contrast, my son shares none of these feelings. He approaches the world with a confidence that I simply don’t understand.
Stephen auditioned for the part, and a few weeks later, as we walked up to the door to school, he suddenly grabbed my hand and pulled me toward a notice board. The list was up showing who received which part in the show. There it was, in black and white, my son’s name printed right next to the part he received: the part of JoJo.
Right then I felt a surge of motherly pride. Not because he had been given a big part in the musical, but because he had believed enough in himself and what he felt in his heart to pursue his dream, even though someone so close to him (me!) had not been overly confident in his ability to achieve it.
In my own God-sized dream journey, I feel like that little second grade boy, full of the energy and excitement of a dream planted in my heart. Yet I know that as I share my dream with others, they may respond much like I did to my son, with more questions and doubt than hope and confidence. I pray that remembering this story will me grace to respond in love and strength to keep persevering.