Welcome to Soul Food. Each Sunday on this site we focus on healthy living by reflecting on our soul and God. For if we neglect that, we have lost everything. (Luke 9:25 and Matthew 16:26.) Dreams. Are they God's dreams, your dreams or fantasies?

There is always a lot of talk about dreams. A popular statement people say is "living the dream." Sometimes that is code for "keeping the faith." Dreams in everyday life aren't usually what we had visualized in our head. It's kind of like being married - marriage isn't always happy. Same with dreams. When you're trying to live the dream, it can sometimes feel like a nightmare. Or maybe your dream is getting rained on. So what do you do when your dream seems more like smashed and broken pieces versus a nice, pretty package topped with a bow?

Four things to consider when your dream gets rained on.

Plan. We need to ask ourselves, is this my plan (dream), God's plan (dream) or a fantasy? Is the dream some la-la land fantasy or a God-given calling (dream)? When our dream is not founded with and by God, our dreams will feel like a nightmare. But even if it is God's plan, it can still feel like a nightmare at times. Remember Joseph? Job? Both of these guys had some pretty tough years. Yes years of wondering what the world God was doing to them. In the end Joseph went on to lead the land during famine and Job was blessed with children, a huge ranch and was able to see his grandkids- four generations worth! When our dream is rooted with God's blessing, it doesn't mean things will go accordingly to how we think it should, but how God will draw us closer to Him with each passing day.

People. It is absolutely amazing to me how people will try to sabotage, ridicule, bully, hate, discourage - you name it - on other people's dreams. Outside dream-takers are people who are jealous of the people that trying to live the plan (dream) that God has called them to. It takes a lot of courage to go after the dream, let alone live it. If you have people trying to knock your dream, you're probably on the right track.

Purpose. What is your purpose for "living the dream?" To get rich? Be famous? Help others? Make a positive difference? If the dream is based by frivolous things vs. things that truly matter, your dream will always be rained on. Make sure that your purpose for your dream is based with God.

Perception. Dreams don't happen overnight. They happen when you intentionally live your life with God's blessing and direction. There is a big difference between your dream and what God's dream is for your life. Sometimes our perception is skewed because we are looking to the world for validation of our dream instead of accepting God's love, mercy and grace.

I've had many "dreams" feel like nightmares and wonder what on earth God is doing with me. I remember that just because I don't always know what is going on, God always knows the big picture. And for that I am thankful. In fact, just this week a desire I've had for many years may never happen. Instead of freaking out, I'm keeping the faith that if this dream of mine is what God wants, He will make it happen.

Food for thought: dreams. Are they God's dreams, your dreams or fantasies?

Proverbs 16:9 "We plan the way we want to live, but only God makes us able to live it."