Cruising at 34,000 feet….sitting comfortably in a metal tube moving at a speed of over 500 miles an hour.
I’m headed home after attending a conference where I met Erik Lindbergh, the grandson of Charles Lindbergh. Commercial flight…the plane I’m sitting in…might have had a different journey to it’s creation if he hadn’t completed that flight.
Before Lindbergh’s historic solo flight across the Atlantic, airplanes were for barnstormer’s and mail delivery. After that it opened the world to the possibility of travel by air.
So you’re asking, “What’s that got to do with me?”
It’s all about the dream.
Lindbergh was a pilot and he heard about a competition to be the first person to cross the Atlantic non-stop (either direction). He set the goal to do it, in his mind he had already accomplished it.
I was ten when Neil Armstrong awkwardly hopped down the narrow ladder attached to the lunar module, Eagle. The grainy, flickering black and white images being beamed from the surface of the moon to planet earth had my full attention. I had been awe-struck by the rocket launches I watched on tv with each successive achievement to go higher, faster, farther…and come back!
Then he jumped. Just a small step, but one that – in that instance – both completed the challenge set by President Kennedy less than ten years before AND in the same instance unleashed the imagination, potential and possibilities of a generation.
I wanted to be an Astronaut!
I dreamed of the weightlessness of space, of the freedom and joy of bounding on the moon in the “bunny hop” of an astronaut.
But there wasn’t anyone to say to me, “Yes, you can achieve your dream!”
I was a ten year old boy on a farm. School was school and it had its structure and designed outcomes. Not among them was a system to encourage and support a kids dreams.
When I was in the sixth grade I wasn’t very good at math. Standing at the black board working math problems, I stood in fear. Fear of failure and ridicule because I couldn’t work the problem.
Then Miss Carmelita Brown, our substitute teacher appeared behind my left shoulder. She softly put her hand on my shoulder. I couldn’t look at her, tears were filling my eyes.
“Mark, you can do this. I know you can.”
Her soft words of encouragement and belief in ME gave me enough belief in myself to struggle through the problem facing me on the board.
How many dreams, hopes and ideas have been laid on the shelf of our minds because we didn’t believe in ourselves enough and we didn’t have anyone around us to tell us “you can do this, I know you can”?
How many nights have you spent lying in bed awake telling yourself you’ll never have that dream or achieve that goal that’s been gnawing at you for years – because you don’t have the belief in yourself or the belief you do have is a question of whether you deserve it or not.
I’ve been there. You’ve been there. We don’t have to stay there.
That’s why I invite you to join me.
So many people talk about the dreams they have for their family, their career, or an idea they know will make a difference either in their life, the lives of others or their community. But no one is there to say “yes, you can do it!”
I grew up on a farm. In order to be successful on a farm there are certain tasks you must do. You’re wondering how farming relates to your dreams and goals?
Did you eat today? Do you wear jeans…made from cotton?
Okay, now that we have that out of the way. A farmer must have fertile soil to work with. He must have a plan for what crops he plans to grow. He must plant the right seeds and tend to them as they grow, cultivate them, eliminate the weeds, water the growing plants, let them mature until time for harvest.
All of this is being done in its own season.
You and I are no different.
In order for us to grow personally, spiritually, or professionally we have to follow a similar path. You must have a fertile mind in which the seeds of your dreams, goals and ideas can germinate and grow. Each of these may have their own season.
You need to continually water, cultivate and eliminate the weeds so you can, in the proper time, reap a harvest. The fulfillment of those dreams will be reaching the goals you set in your life and allowing your ideas to blossom.
That’s the path we’re on. And I want to walk with you. I call it the ‘Journey of Growth’.
This is the journey I have followed based on the rules and values I learned on the farm. But my journey isn’t complete yet either. And at times I have not given good enough attention to the growth and suffered a disappointing harvest. But I still have goals and dreams I want to accomplish. And part of my cultivation this time is helping someone else – maybe you – on your journey. I’m looking forward to some fantastic harvests!
We will spend time together here understanding how to create your own successful harvest and the steps and processes you must follow to make that happen. You may have heard many of the principles before. But you didn’t keep up with them very long. It’s hard to be your own encourager.
No, it won’t be a process for you to become an overnight success, but the success you define can be achieved by following the path of a farmer. Its origin goes all the way back to the beginning when man’s purpose was to till the soil and care for the garden.
So, right now, get a piece of paper and a pen or pencil and write down that one dream, goal or idea that you have been holding on to. The one that keeps creeping up in your thoughts. The one you can’t see to shake. Don’t share this with anyone. It’s one of your most prized possessions.
How do I know?
Because you’re still holding on to it!
I wasn’t able to become an astronaut for many reasons, but the biggest was my eyesight. I’d never qualify. However, the grandson of Charles Lindbergh was part of the creation of the X-Prize that created a competition to send a rocket to space, return safely and do it again within 30 days. The SpaceShipOne won the prize and the race for commercial, passenger space travel was born. I guess I still have a shot!
“But it’s a stupid dream and I’ll never have it” you say? Then why were you able to write it down?
Because deep down you still want it. You still have a small belief in yourself. You just need someone to tell you:
“Yes, you can do it”!
You need your own Miss Carmelita Brown.
Let me be that person for you.
Leave a comment below of your hopes and dreams you are still holding on to. If that feels too vulnerable, then subscribe to my blog to start your journey or send me an email privately at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can begin a conversation about your Journey of Growth.