On Wednesday afternoon, a tree on the side of the cricket field spread a tiny dappled blanket of shade so two of your cheering grandparents and I could watch you wait your turn to bat and bowl and howzaaaaaat!
It was serious stuff – you and your friends on that field of green dreams. A heat mirage of little men in whites and pads and helmets – enormous gloves fist-bumping in the middle of the pitch like Proteas when someone smacked a four.
I also watched hundreds of white butterflies flit over the campus and across the field and it looked like the blue highveld sky was snowing wings.
And I thought about the big dreams inside your small body. I’ve met few other people who dream the way you do. I love how you write your dreams – specifically and strategically – and peg them to the load-shedding lights you’ve strung across your room so they flap like so many white butterflies in the breeze above your bed.
Every year, millions of butterflies hatch in the Kalahari and fly north-east across the country. Along the way, they lay eggs. They drink nectar every twenty minutes (or die). Some die. Some make it to Mozambique. Some make it out to sea. Some make it to Madagascar. Where they die.
So it’s not a migration – just an emigration – because they’re not coming back. They don’t need to. They’ve laid eggs and their babies will do the magical egg-caterpillar-chrysalis-ta-daaa thing and make the same trip next year.
Halfway through the first innings, one butterfly settled fleetingly on the grass near me. Presumably twenty minutes had passed. It wasn’t there to watch the cricket so much as to look for a snack. And I thought –
If this butterfly has a name, God knows it. He put the flap in this butterfly’s wings. He knows if this butterfly will make it to Madagascar, or if it’ll die in the school car park. He knew it would flit past this field on this day while this cricket match was being played by these kids with big dreams in their hearts.
So boy, I want to remind you –
You have a Heavenly Father who created butterflies and sends them across the continent every year just because they’re part of an intricate ecological dance of life and death that glorifies Him. How much more – how much more – does He care about you – image-bearer, grace-heir – and your dreams and heartaches and the things that make you sad or mad or unbelievably excited?
He’s got you on a journey too. It’s not a migration. It’s an emigration. Because life’s not a roundtrip and you won’t pass this way again.
So keep dreaming your dreams and offering them as living sacrifices of faith and hope in the One who is the wind beneath your eagle wings. He’ll sustain you – not just every twenty minutes but as much and as often as you need it – until the final wickets fall and your dreams earth-side are gloriously done.
. . .
Yay for weekends! Have a great one.
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