I used to enjoy listening to public speakers, pastors, and motivational gurus expound on 'Dream large!' and 'Follow your dream!' etc. I love future thinking. In fact, its one of my strongest strengths. Dreaming large for me was easy. When I considered the actual execution of those dreams and mixing that with ambition, practical living, and immediate responsibilities... some dreams stayed dreams, or only got half done. As it turns out, Responsibility is my strongest strength, and I wasn't going to let my dreams take precedence over family life. Hearing talks about dreaming started to get discouraging.
A Different Perspective
One day as I was reflecting on this (and perhaps wondering at the purpose of my life a little bit), I realized something: God had been faithful to the 'dreams' in our hearts which we hadn't even entirely verbalized or prayed - dreams that were more meaningful and foundational than career pinnacles or bucket lists. Let me explain further..
Years ago while Ewa and I were on our honeymoon here in Canada, we mused 'Wouldn't it be nice if we could bring Ewa's parents from Poland here to Canada and let them see what its like here.' Her parents had never been outside Poland, and the beauty of the areas we were honeymooning was impossible to convey in a letter or a phone call.
For me there was an additional unspoken, wishful thought of 'as our children grow up, what would be the ideal frequency of family visits given Ewa's side of the family lives in Poland?' I never seriously considered what the 'right' answer would be - there was only the desire that the kids would be exposed to both sides of their family heritage and culture.
We did not have resources to accomplish these 'dreams' at the time. But God knew. Over the years, He provided for means and resources to bring Ewa's parents here to Canada several times for extended stays, and for us to take our children to Poland several times as well. Every visit had great memories and experiences for our kids and Ewa's family.
As I considered this from the vantage point of grown children and completed trips and visits, I realized God had a different, better dream for us all along - one that included families, cultures, countries, and languages. I was moved and filled with gratitude, realizing what God had brought about.
Dreams Come True
Some great memories:
|Ewa's parents with us in the Canadian Rockies on their |
first trip to Canada in July 1997
|Ewa's parents 2nd trip to Canada in Summer 1999|
Here Kornelia is enjoying playing with Ewa's
Mom in Slave Lake, Alberta
|Ewa's parents 3rd trip to Canada in 2006.|
Here we're all playing on a playground in Radium, BC
|This was also taken on Ewa's parents 3rd trip to|
Canada. Here they're enjoying a walk along Long
Beach on Vancouver Island. This was one place in
particular we 'dreamed' about taking them
| Christmas/New Years 2007/2008|
We were able to go to Poland and celebrate the
holidays as well as Ewa's parents 50th wedding
|This is from that same Christmas trip. On the return|
flight home we were upgraded to business class on
the flight over the Atlantic Ocean.
A real treat for all of us!
|Ewa's parents last trip to Canada in 2009.|
Here we're having a BBQ/picnic at a local park in
Calgary with my parents
|In 2013, Ewa's brother and his family were able to join us|
for 3 weeks in the Summer. Here we're enjoying a visit and
a laugh in our living room with my parents and brother.
|We were able to visit Ewa's family in Summer, 2019|
Ewa is with our kids, standing in front of Florian's
Gate in old town, Krakow