"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?' Actually, who are we not to be? You are a child of God. We are born to manifest the glory of God that is within us; it is in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people the right to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
--Marianne Williamson (My quick online research suggests three different people said this, but most sources indicate that she did.)
This quote resonates with me. Back in February I went on a retreat through my program here in Nashville, and we tried our hand at a Quaker practice that utilizes a "clearness committee." One of the things that committee asked me was "What are your dreams for your life?"
I didn't have an answer.
I realized that I don't dream; I am not terribly hopeful; and I limit myself entirely too much. I think the failure to do those things is a way we deny the light that could emanate from us; it's a way we fail to unleash our potential.
And don't get me wrong. I look forward to things and hope to travel to places I've never been and whatnot, but I have not dreamed big dreams. I have not had high hopes and huge prayer requests (although I've certainly had expectations for myself, which are different in my mind).
So I am working on that, trying to be intentional about dreaming more and not being so firmly based in what I think is probable or possible. I'm trying to pray big and not be afraid to hope for things that may never be realized.
p.s. I'm grateful for the fun trip to the Nashville zoo today with my niece and two of my students.