Today we have the privilege of hearing from Lauraine Snelling, a dear, dear woman with a quick wit and great mind. She’s going to do the third part of the transitions series (of which I was a part). Be sure to sign up for free here to listen to her tomorrow. The download of my talk and Holley Gerth’s is up there too now, and you can download those for free and listen to them at your leisure. Without further ado, here’s Lauraine:
All of my life, I’ve believed in the necessity of dreams. Day dreaming is not an art for children only but one we need to cultivate all of our lives. Stories come from day dreaming, so I have honed this skill of letting stories move through my mind like I am at the movies. I know this is a gift and I know from whom it comes. As I read my Bible, I delighted in the stories of dreams but it wasn’t until my thirties I think, that I heard the term “God sized dreams” and took a giant step in understanding.
Was it really God giving me these dreams? Yes, I understood that He spoke to his people through dreams but that is still different from God giving me a dream. As that sank in, I got more bits and pieces of understanding. Never did He give me a dream of participating in the Olympics in any format. Or the desire to find some new mathematical or scientific equation. Instead one of my dreams since high school was to someday write horse books for girls. I love horses and kids, I have always loved to read, and I never outgrew any of those loves. So, when the time was right, God’s timing, He put his foot in the middle of my back and said, “Now.” I did not plan on attending that writer’s conference, I did not know about it, so the way He worked it out was His alone. I attended a four day conference at Warner Pacific College in Portland OR and have never looked back, but have always been grateful for that time He so obviously meddled in my life.
Mary calls those the thin places. I’d not heard that term before but it sure fits. He had a plan for me that put feet on that dream that He put in my heart more than twenty years earlier. I had no idea where this dream was going, other than to write those horse books for girls. I’ve had twenty-one horse stories published for girls and several more that are in the adult market, also read by many kids.
So, how do we recognize His hand in our dreams? One thing I see is that the God dreams fit us so personally. Yes, they take work on our part, but He also gives us the chance to develop the skills needed for the dream. Another is that God dreams don’t let go of us. If you try to ignore them or run away, you’ll bump up against them again in another time and place.
Frequently we don’t have a clue how He will use these dreams but He will. He is the original recycler, He never wastes a thing, not even the tears we might shed in the effort of preparing for the dream.
Horse books for girls, gentle romances, one step led to another. I thought I’d write only contemporary fiction. He laughed and took me down an historical road. Each step of the way, when I look back, I can see His hand at work. That seems to be important. So often He told the Israelites, “remember.” We see His actions best by looking back, by remembering what He has done. What an adventure I have been on these years. And I know there are more ahead. More dreams, more thin places to see Him more clearly, and all along, learning to trust Him and have the courage to continue, step by step. Welcome to the adventure.
Lauraine Snelling, author of all the Red River of the North series and spin offs and One Perfect Day, my latest contemporary. That’s right, He lets me write both.