I met her outside McDonald’s in Uptown Minneapolis. She was hanging with a fairly large group of friends from the charter school she attends. It was a special field day for their visual arts and technology course. The students had been to the Apple store to make movies earlier that morning, had just finished eating, and were gathering before their next event.
If you’ve been around the blog this past week, this story sounds familiar, right? That’s because one of Lori’s friends is Jouaye!
I asked the group if anyone would be willing to share their answer to the question, “If you didn’t have to worry about money, what would you do with your life?”
Lori’s eyes glistened. I knew she had something to say, but she went on her way encouraging others to participate. In fact, if I remember right, Lori was one of the people who encouraged Jouaye to share.
After I chatted with Jouaye, when it seemed there were no more volunteers to be had from this group, I asked one last time if there was anyone else who wanted to share what they’d do with their life if they didn’t have to worry about money.
It was then that Lori stepped forward. Not figuratively, but literally. She came forward from the back of the group and walked towards me.
She came up close, those eyes still glistening, the hope dripping off her like an invisible force field.
And this is what she said.
“I want to be a video editor and producer.”
“Awesome,” I said. “That’s so awesome! Do you know what kind of videos you’d like to edit and produce?”
“No,” responded Lori.
“I just know I want to be a video editor and producer.”
She stood brave and bold, right there in her dream. You could see it written all over her face.
I loved that girl so.
So what can we learn from Lori?
Lori, oh Lori. What a sweet, sweet dear.
The confidence she had in her own dream spurred her on to encourage others to share their dreams. The energy, the hope she exuded served as a beacon of light coming forth from the group. These dreams? These great possibilities? They excited Lori. They gave her great confidence.
Lori was an encourager from the start, but she also had to put her brave on. I know she had to put her brave on because I saw her in the back of the group. I saw her encouraging others. I saw her wanting them to share. I saw her lifting them up, waiting in anticipation of who might go next. When I made that last call, she stepped forth with courage to answer. Her response was intentional. She literally had to walk forward and testify to the dream on her heart.
Yes, Lori’s story proves there’s something amazingly bold and beautiful about testifying your truth.
So I wonder, how are you encouraging others to share and live out their dreams? Perhaps you encourage quietly. Or perhaps you encourage boldly and publicly. However you do it, just do it. I have to believe that Jouaye was encouraged to share his dream because of Lori’s encouragement. And I have to believe that someone in your life could be encouraged to live out their dreams because of your encouragement.
And then there’s this for each one of us to consider…
What makes your eyes glisten? What are the dreams deep in your heart? Perhaps you need to step forward and declare – these are the things I would do if I didn’t have to worry about money at all, these are the dreams of my heart.
So today, encourage. Step forward, boldly. Whatever it is you need to do, do it.
For we all need encouragement. And sometimes, we just need to step forward and be brave, whatever the price.
So tell me, is there anyone in your life that you’re actively encouraging to move towards their dreams? Or are you the one who needs to step forward and declare your dreams outloud?
*This post is a part of a month-long 31 Days series titled Dreams from the Street. If you’d like to read more from my series, click here and you’ll be brought to the series landing page where all 31 posts are listed and linked! You can follow me on Twitter at twitter.com/AmyBPederson where I’ll tweet links to all 31 posts using hashtag #write31days, and I’d LOVE to connect on Facebook at facebook.com/AmyBPederson! I’m so glad you stopped by. Make yourself comfortable and take a peek around the place. You’re welcome back anytime.