Losing Your Imagination

Kyle Reed // @kylereed

Did you know that I use to play for the St. Louis Cardinals? I was their starting shortstop and was pretty good. Well, at least in my imagination I played for the St. Louis Cardinals. In fact, as a kid, I played for the Boston Bruins, St. Louis Blues (I was traded by the Bruins to the Blues), and was a wrestler for the WWF. I had a big imagination as a kid. It went as far as me wearing goalie gear and hitting a ball up against the wall and making saves. In my mind I was getting a chance to live out my imagination. But, when I actually saw the truth, my imagination disappeared along with my dreams.

Kids have amazing imaginations. I love to hear what they are thinking about, who they want to be, and what they have been doing. They always put a new spin on something that has become old to me. Shane Hipps talked about this idea in his book Flickering Pixels

“The mind was made to generate, create, and imagine. Creative imagination is a fundamental stage of brain development that begins very early in life. Kids naturally learn how to pretend. So when the mind generates a vast array of imagined pictures to bring a story to life, and then has them summarily replaced by the images of a movie, it is deeply unsatisfying.” (Pg 80 of Flickering Pixels)

I remember the day my dream was popped. I was about 15 and realized that playing for the St. Louis Cardinals was not going to happen. I wasn’t good enough, fast enough, big enough, and honestly lucky enough. Reality set in and my dream was set outside along with the trash to be taken and thrown away. I hated that day I lost my innocence. I lost my dream at age 15 and have had a hard time dreaming ever since.

Do you dream about the future? Do you ever just sit at home and think about what it is going to be like five years from now? I like to do this with ideas. Often times I come with grand ideas, ideas that I think are genius (naturally). The problem with me and ideas is that I get caught up dreaming. I move so far forward and the potential of what could be that I never start the idea. Dreaming has killed many ideas of mine. But in reality another reason why ideas are killed is because the dreams I have seem as far fetched as me flying (I am hoping to literally have this dream very soon in my sleep, working on it now). I have lost my innocence on dreaming because I know reality, I know what it takes to do something, I know that others have better ideas then I do and in turn God will use them over me.

I kill me dreams all the time because I wake up. You ever been in a great dream and wake up in the middle of it? I do this all the time, usually it centers around me being married or being in a band. I feel like these dreams are real, like I am actually doing this, and then I wake up and look around and see an empty dark room and realize that I was dreaming again. John Mayer is right, “when you are dreaming with a broken heart, Waking Up is the hardest part.”

My hope today is that we continue to dream in the reality of God and not get caught up in the reality of the world.

Here is a dream that is taking off because it is letting God do the dreaming:
Jon Acuff is raising 60,000 to building schools (the community raised 30 in 18 hours)

Is there a dream that you have given up on?

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Kyle Reed

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I create websites, conversations, and ideas. Advocate for the 20 somethings. Looking to connect everyone to a mentor. Married to my best friend, Ginny. I like my coffee black and my dog Jack. I currently live in Nashville and work at Sony Music/Provident in Nashville
  • http://intensedebate.com/people/SynapticLight Phillip Gibb

    Do I need to question every dream that I have and check if it is self serving or from God?
    We would probably be good at motivating either way.
    My dream is to make a film, to that end I engage with filmmaker; especially Christian and do 90% of my video and editing work for the church.
    I don't want to loose that dream, my imagination to realize that dream to glorify God. Please don't wake me up :O
    But am I doing it for myself of has God planted that passion in me and is Glorified by seeing me engage with that passion – ala Rick Warren's notion that God enjoy us being ourselves.


  • Joe

    Great thought provoking post. Have you ever done StrengthFinders 2.0 ? It's a strengths assessment test by Gallup (the same people who do the poll). I would bet you have Futuristic in your top 5 strengths. You probably have visionary attributes. Look into it.

    “All dream, but unequally. Those that dream at night
    in the dusty recesses of their minds awake the next day
    to find that their dreams were just vanity. But those
    who dream during the day with their eyes wide open
    are dangerous people; they act out their dreams to make
    them reality.” —Thomas Lawrence

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/klreed189 Kyle Reed

      Joe, I have always wanted to take that test I just could never afford to pay to do it or find anywhere I could do it. But I will definitely look into that and see what I can do.

      And that quote, it is awesome and something that I am going to write down and look at often for inspiration.
      Thanks for stopping in and leaving some words.

      Look forward to more conversation

  • Shelby

    I think my dreams change a lot. I have wanted to do so many things in my life its hard to keep track. I mean as a child when i was 5 years old and was asked "What do you want to be when you grow up" my response was "A lion." people always laughed but it was true, I knew lions were fierce creatures, king of the jungle who could survive through most things and in my childhood I felt like I was in a jungle of monsters and as a lion I could escape all those things. and I mean, that was a silly childhood dream that I quickly learned was physically impossible.

    But i've had other dreams, of being a psychologist, a vet, a marine biologists, and most recent work in the field of broadcasting and become as news anchor. But as I explored each career I figured out things that stopped me from being able to achieve those, Psychologists are often affected greatly by their patience problems, and that career field has the highest suicide rate, being an extremely compassionate person i strongly empathize and sympathize with others and that worries me that they could affect me so strongly. A vet, I have the weakest stomach, i could never perform surgery on animals, I don't know how to swim, my biggest fear is being under water- there goes marine biology. and as I'm learning more about broadcasting in college, i don't know if I can handle the cut-throat world that surrounds the media. I'm almost too nice to be in that environment.

    So i don't know, maybe I'm killing my own dreams, by finding the one weakness I have that would affect those jobs and ruining it for me. and I have never really asked God to show me what HE wants me to do with my life. So maybe thats what I need to start doing, asking God what he wants me to do.

    (Sorry this is so long, and kind of rambling, not sure if it made much sense at all)

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/klreed189 Kyle Reed

      Well my Dad is a psychologist so I can understand what you are saying about that.
      I am the same way, at age 16 I wanted to be a firefighter, that changed quickly. I have changed so many times that I forget half of the things that I wanted to do (btw, the lion response is awesome).

      What is hard for me now is that I really cannot just think about what I want to be, I actually have to be. It has turned from dreaming to actually living out the dream. What is hard is that our weaknesses get in the way of everything and we often talk our way out of doing anything. But you are right, it is easier for us to dream and not let God dream for us. Asking God to lead me in what he wants me to do is the hardest thing I have done and often very very confusing.

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