Late last year I made the decision to change my course of job and while I was deeply entrenched into my career as a corporate team builder I found that there was deep seated unrest that was in my heart and mind.
It was a feeling I could not shake and so at the end of 2018 I made the decision to head back to university and revive an old dream that was birthed in me as a 10 year old. My question was, “Was I supposed to let that dream go or there something greater behind that buried dream?”
A childhood dream forgotten….
My best friend and I, in primary school, were on a path to a life of art and drawing. We were avid drawers and loved spending our time creating characters, comics and just spending as much time with pencils in hand creating and imagining new worlds onto blank pages. At the time I was certain I was on that path and heading to a career doing art, but only as time passed and the future would be written would determine whether this childhood dream would or would not become a reality.
My childhood dream had life breathed into it again in 1998 when two things happened in my life. One was the most important one of my life was coming to accept Jesus as my LORD and saviour and the second was the release of the animated feature ‘Prince of Egypt’ which depicted the life and exploits of the person of Moses and it being told through drawings and amazing animation.
I love this movie and the way it visually told one the greatest stories from the Bible. I also remember being absolutely drawn to the extras on the DVD which dived into the behind scenes looks of the many artists that created the characters, scenes and story lines. After seeing the movie I was really moved and felt a desire in me to be part of one of those animating teams one day.
Two decades on and the dream begins to spark inside again
Fast forward to the end of 2018, now a 37 year old that has nearly 20 years work life under my belt in a variety of industries I found myself connecting with that childhood dream again and wondering if it was just a childhood dream or it was something more.
As I wrote the application and put forward my portfolio last year to get into my prestigious and highly sought after course in university I found myself reminiscing about that moment in time when I said to myself I want to be part of telling great stories of the faith in an animated or least art-based form. I had made the decision and summoned the courage to believe that this dream was at least worth exploring once more.
The challenges and the truth that sets us free
So you might be thinking it's too late, the time clock is ticking and you have reached the point that your dream has expired. You might be thinking you're just too old and you start believing that you missed your window to fulfil and to live out that dream.
This was me and has probably been me over this past 20 years since that time watching the Prince of Egypt in 1998. This has only increased every year that I have aged in my 30s. I have let every excuse get in the way. I have believed every lie about age and that time has expired on my dreams. At times have been despondent and depressed thinking there must be more for me to do, yet I’m stuck.
Then I remembered the truth that the only one that determines time is God. He is the alpha and the omega, the first and the last. He constantly shows us that your age is not a number to restrict us, but rather is a gift of time that you have been given to live the best life you can for his good works.
It is an opportunity so that you can grow into the creation God dreamed of before you were even in your mother’s womb. God reminds us that he has given us every tool needed to fulfil that dream and he gives us an untapped flow of grace when we become a little distracted and off the course he intended for us to follow.
God reminds us those dreams and talents are there for a reason
When God’s truth sets us free we realise the talents or dreams we have buried were not there to remain underground, but were put in us for a reason. Our role in this process is to trust the God that has put those dreams in your heart and the talents he wants you to grow and develop them for a purpose (see Matthew chapter 25, verses 14-30 for the parable of the talents).
God always reminds you of your dreams. Sometimes through other people, sometimes through his word or a great preach. For me people always were saying to me your talented, your creative; wow your art is amazing. Even my coffee cup would remind me in the morning with the word creative emblazoned on it. It was then up to me to believe the truth and answer the question, “So what was I doing with my dreams and talents?”
Was I just the servant that decided the best course of action was to bury his talent rather than seeing it being used and allowing God to show you why he put it in you in the first place? It’s a real challenge, and I am just on the beginning of the journey as I have just finished my first week of my University course in 2D, 3D animation and Illustration.
I am once again breathing life into that dream and believing the truth and trusting a God that says it is never too late to chase after it because I put it there for a reason.
Justin Monaghan is currently launching as a professional prophetic artist under the label JR Faith Creations and works as corporate team builder all over Australia. He is married to Liana and lives at the beautiful beach of Port Willunga. They journey with the creatives in their lives to see them rise up to their full potential for the Kingdom of God.