A Moment in Time – June 6th, 2019
June 6, 2019
“God, Study, Dream”
I’m a dreamer. And for as long as I can remember, I have been a dreamer. More than idealistic pie in the sky stuff, I am a dreamer and a driver who seeks to make God given dreams happen.
So when I read Genesis chapters 37-45, I can relate to my man ‘Jo’ —remember him, Joseph, the gifted young lad who had to manage the nearly fatalistic concoction of fantasies of his personal success, his big mouth, and a strong dose of family complexity. I’m guessing, in some way, you can relate too. We all have drama and dreams… or at least we had dreams, right?
Now some people dream best while they sleep. I dream with my eyes WIDE open. Perhaps that makes me a “day dreamer”; others may use the language of “visionary.” If you ask my wife, she would likely use a term like “restless”—both to describe how my tossing and turning interrupts her sleep and to describe how the prospect of making my dream a reality instigates seasons when 4 a.m. forays into my prayer closet or office can become ‘a thing.’ This morning was one of those mornings.
While tidying up my home office, I came upon a large brown envelope with hand written letters and a picture of my biological father in it. His picture typically holds my attention anytime I encounter this brown envelope. However, today, was a little different.
For some reason, I was drawn to a particular letter inside the brown envelope. Dated November 28, 1991, the letter was mailed from the U.S. to me in Bermuda. I was 12 years old when I received this letter. It reads:
“Hello TyRon, my son how are you doing? This is Ronald, your Daddy. So glad to hear from you. I’m glad you finally wrote me. Say, I’m sorry that you didn’t win the Spelling Bee contest but I’m very proud of you that you came in third. Tyron, listen, I want you to know that as soon as I can get you here for a summer vacation, I will send for you. Oh yes, I told the family that you wrote me and they were glad to hear from you. I pray to God that you will study hard and keep your eyes on your dreams. Jesus Christ says, “so as a man thinketh, so is He” This means whatever you put your heart and mind [to], you will become. But you must work hard at that goal. Well, I’m going now, but keep in touch.
Whew, there’s a lot there. A lot to process for a 12 year old boy. I had to grow up fast. I thought a lot. I still think a lot.
There’s important context about my birth and my biological father that I have not shared with you yet that is vital if you are to more fully understand who I am as a border crossing brotha. Stay tuned this month. Suffice to say, it has been an interesting and complex journey.
In my research studies of over 100 men in Bermuda, South Africa and the United States, I have learned that “expectations—positive or negative” are vital in the identity forming journeys from boyhood to manhood. Rereading my father’s letter this morning revealed to me that my expectations for my life were not only framed by my family in Bermuda who raised me, but also by a disconnect with my biological father, who—though I only saw him twice in my life—affirmed me…at least in this letter… in three areas: “God, study, dream.” He said, “I pray to God that you will study hard and keep your eyes on your dreams.”
I think I’ll unpack the letter a bit more for you tomorrow. But for today, I want to affirm you in three areas where my family affirmed me: “God, study, dream.”
If you still have dreams today, know that you’re in great company. My man “Jo” of Genesis 37 and I celebrate you: “God, study, dream.” Put God first, study God’s word and your craft, and dream big!
This is Dr. Ty Douglas, author of Border Crossing Brothas, and I want to invite you to experience SALT—So Amazing Life Today; it’s available to each of us, in Christ.
You can reach Dr. Ty at www.DrTyDouglas.org and follow him at @DrTyDouglas.
Link to purchase Border Crossing Brothas: https://www.amazon.com/Border-Crossing-«Brothas»-Navigating-Critical/dp/1433135388