Ambition struggles with restraints like a squealing pig strapped to the altar of reality. We’re just not that important in ways we want to be and extremely so in ways we never dreamed we’d be.
So we regularly have to slay our dreams of grandeur so we can live a life pleasing to our Creator.
Recently, a former neighbor reminded me of the time his pig got out and uprooted my father’s fence. Although now in his forties, he still had a sheepish look on his face as he shared. So the imagery of this pig’s destructive power was fresh in my mind when I wrote this post.
It’s difficult for me to detect when my ambition is productive and when it takes me off course because the course often changes.
Take for instance my ambition as a writer. I dreamed of inspiring lots of adults to live more creative lives by selling lots of books, but instead I wrote success on the most unlikely souls of youth.
I’ve had former students visit me to express their gratitude for believing in them, teaching them to read, and inspiring them to pursue college and career paths.
Youth who entered my literacy classes several years ago reading at second grade levels. They didn’t seem to get what I tried to impart, as far as developing a vision for their lives. Yet they returned to thank me and let me know that they are applying for colleges and have careers in mind.
Of course I cried…like I always do when I witness a miracle. I also used these unexpected opportunities to realign my ambition that insists on running wild and uprooting my plans.
Yes, I regularly have to slay my aspirations on the altar of reality. And believe me when I say that my starry-eyed dreams of success do not die gracefully.
Often ambition empowers us to pursue our dreams; however, when God has a different direction in mind, this swine of wilfullness can uproot our lives.
I’m curious, have you ever had to kill your ambitions in order to let something of beauty and significance come forth?