Hold fast to your dreams - and your prayers

Bringing a spiritual perspective to daily life

When we think of the future, we each have goals, purposes, achievements, that we hope to accomplish. We have dreams. These are often special things kept quietly in the heart. They're worth holding on to. They're worth praying about.

Yet, sometimes hopes and plans for the future can seem a long way off. And if you should ever doubt that your prayers really matter, ask God. He is sending His angel messages all the time to assure you of your prayers, to tell you that He cares for you and loves you.

In the Bible and the teachings of Christian Science, the nature of God is revealed as all-embracing Love. God is also the eternal, infinite, and omnipresent Mind that provides all good for us - now, tomorrow, forever. We don't have to wait until the future to know His divine goodness in our lives or to feel good about ourselves and our purpose. As God's children, His own spiritual likeness, we're already expressing Love. That's what we're created to be and to do. That's what we will always do - express Love. We will not be kept from realizing our God-given purpose. We will not be deprived of good. Our best, unselfish goals, when humbly conformed to God's will, cannot be denied.

Here's a true story a friend told me. It contains many lessons. It showed me that divine Love does confirm our prayers, that our prayers matter, that we must hold fast to our prayers.

My friend was walking to work one morning when she noticed a pigeon on the street. In the city's busy traffic, the bird had apparently been hit by a car. My friend began to pray, and after walking a few steps farther, she turned back to where the pigeon was. But the pigeon had died.

My friend was saddened, but as she walked on her way she continued praying. Then she passed a tall man sweeping the sidewalk. Their eyes met, and after a moment or two, she headed on to her office. That seemed to be the end of that particular event.

But a couple of months later, my friend was shopping in a store during her lunch hour when the same man walked in. He looked at her and said, "I know you." Then he said, "That day, you were praying for that bird, weren't you?"

"Yes, I was," she answered.

The man then recited some lines from a poem by Langston Hughes. The first line of each stanza begins, "Hold fast to dreams."

To my friend it was amazing that this man recognized her and had remembered the event with the pigeon so clearly, that he had intuitively realized she was praying for the bird, and that he had felt embraced by the prayer. My friend had held fast to her prayer that the life of that bird - of all creation - was eternally in God, divine Life. And when the man shared the poem with her, she felt blessed. She felt that it was an angel message from God assuring her that prayer does matter. Her prayers. The man's own prayers. Everyone's prayers. Prayer embraces the world.

In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," its author, Mary Baker Eddy, writes, "Hold thought steadfastly to the enduring, the good, and the true, and you will bring these into your experience proportionably to their occupancy of your thoughts" (pg. 261). The Bible's book of Hebrews counsels, "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)" (10:23).

God's message tells each of us not to let go of our dreams - our hopes and our aspirations - and not to let go of our prayers for their accomplishment, regardless of the circumstances or challenges we may face. It's a simple lesson, but an important one. Hold fast. You'll realize God's blessing.

Turn you to the strong hold, ye prisoners of hope: even to day do I declare that I will render double unto thee. Zechariah 9:12

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