This is a picture of a page in my journal from September or October of last year. I felt strongly in the fall that the Lord was reminding us to dream again with him. I was at a conference with our church and they spoke about how God was releasing a gift for people to dream again. There was so much at the conference that I feel like the Lord did and shifted for me.. but this post is about dreaming with the Lord, so I will stick to that for now.
One thing that really stuck out to me when I was at the conference was when Bill Johnson said "the longing for the world is for people to dream.. and if you are going to dream.. please dream of them" The vision in my head & my heart when I heard that & when I re-read it now.. resonates SO deeply.
I came home from the conference and told Freeland that I felt like we should write down our dreams. Dreams for family, for the people around us, for our life & future.. for the people the Lord would have us dream for.. and not hold back. This is not hard for Freeland. My husband is WAY more of a dreamer than I am. I am WAY more Realistic Rachel over here. So I can already tell you some of his big dreams without even having to ask him because he speaks them all the time. (even though they are CRAZY and make my heart pound)
I knew for once I needed to remember to dream.. through prayer & with the Lord.
So I sat down one afternoon and wrote down some dreams. Some obvious dreams that I know and have known were in my heart. And other ones that I just wrote and thought "what in the world?"
On that list, as you can see above, I wrote adopting (isn't God crazy.. about 4 weeks later he started fulfilling that dream!) and then I wrote "going overseas with Noonday."
That may seem normal but its not.. at least not for me. I had no idea why my dream was to go with Noonday. Especially back in the fall. (I get it now) At that point, if I was dreaming about going overseas I could have gone with anyone (like for example, I could go with my husband who goes EVERY SINGLE YEAR!) But I didn't just write "go overseas" or "go on a mission trip again with Freeland" or anything else - I wrote down noonday. The strangest part to me that makes me laugh is.. I had no connection or relationship with Noonday at that point when I wrote down my dream.
spoiler alert: about 4 weeks ago I signed up (after MONTHS and MONTHS and MONTHS of knowing I was supposed to) and became a Noonday Collection ambassador. Im launching my business & relationship with them in June. I planned to do a fancy ol post here on it in the next week. Cart in front of the horse here people.
Back to my list, I didn't work with Noonday last fall. I knew ZERO people (in person) who did. So why did I write that down? Isn't that just strange and beautiful at the same time.. that deep down its a desire of mine that the Lord gave me.. and really is a huge dream.. but one I just barely realized until I stopped and asked the Lord? Then it took being brave enough to write it down. Then it took me being brave enough to ask the Lord to fulfill the dream too! ;)
In summary, back in the fall the Lord revealed to me a dream to travel overseas with noonday.
Obviously, I could continue to break this down for you even more and tell you all the ways the Lord gave me different dreams and how He is weaving all those dreams together.. but this post shall end at some point.
Fast forward to last week: what do you know?! Noonday announced they were taking a trip this summer.. not just any trip! A storytelling trip. A trip to meet women & connect. A trip to establish friendships & share their stories.. a trip to give a voice to the voiceless! My heart immediately started racing and it didn't stop for appropriately 6-7 hours! Not lying.
Noonday has partnered with International Justice Mission to fuse fashion + justice on a trip to Rwanda. They are calling it #StyleForJustice. Here are the people going:
AND GUESS WHAT!? THEY HAVE ONE SPOT OPEN! I don't know what got into me. (I do know, the Lord gave me a dream and I'm being brave enough to believe He is going to fulfill it) But I entered the contest to win that spot you guys!
I have NO idea if this is the trip the Lord gave me the dream for. I mean, I know from my perspective it seems per-fec-t. My passion for missions, photography, relationships and how the way the Lord has been revealing to me His heart for justice, the way He is giving me a desire to share other peoples stories & advocate, the way He has been showing me my purchasing power, the way He has humbled me and called me to repent, the way he has given me boldness to jump in and say yes.. boldness to engage in all of it and not miss it! All of those reasons and more make me brave enough to try to fulfill this dream! Praise the Lord when I wrote down that dream .. I had no idea what He was about to do in my heart and how He was going to reveal His heart to me to align with the dream He gave me.
But I'm so happy with whatever the Lord does.. and whoever he sends because I know no matter what this trip is going to be powerful and its going to share stories with people who wouldn't hear them otherwise. There are SO many fabulous women who have entered the contest. (for example: Flower patch farmgirl, Let Love Grow, Honey Holden) So many that Ive tried to convince myself I'm wasting my time a gazillion times in the last week. Id encourage you to read through all the entries you want because you'll be inspired by how brave women are and how many women today just want to see Jesus move!
So, now its time for me to ask you to help me.. HELP ME GO TO RWANDA! The person who wins will be the one who can convince her community of people to support her! You guys are my people.. and here I am trying to convince you! This isnt about blog followers or your social following (praiiiissseee) its about rallying your community!
All you have to do is click this link:
you will see my picture and read my "why" (in only 350 words... we all know that could have been a novel though) Right above my picture all you have to do is click "vote"
*YOU CAN VOTE EVERYDAY THROUGH THE 28th!!*
Easy Peasy.. no email registration or anything else!
I wish I could sit with each of you in person and share all the Lord has done over the last year and what He is doing now. (don't you worry friends, I'll continue to share those stories here) You're all invited to our house if you want & I will sit and tell you about it too! ;)
In summary: When you ask the Lord for dreams He gave you.. He beautifully aligns your heart with His and the dreams and desires of His heart.. if you do get ready for your life to be wrecked!
Thank you for those of you who have already voted, rallied with me, shared it on your facebook pages, emailed your families, even blogged about it and cheered me on! Regardless of if I go or not - the Lord has given me a voice to share my dream & now literally everyone I know and so many people I don't even know.. know a dream of mine! Bless it!
OH AND YOU GUYS!!! Do you see what dream is listed below going overseas with Noonday? It says "playing a part in rescuing women in trafficking" Do you know what International Justice Mission does??? THEY DO THAT! (there ya go.. now you know another dream that makes my heart race and bubbles up some sort of passion that cant be explained!)
Lastly ---> if you want to read the heart behind the trip or read why they picked who they did click here.. Jessica Honegger wrote a beautiful post.
Here is a link to all the websites of the people who are going:
Jen Hatmaker - author of the best seller 7
Jennie Allen - founder of IF Gathering and author
Kelle Hampton - author of Bloom
Raechel Myers - co-founder of She Reads Truth
Emily Lex - blogger at Jones Design Company
Jessica Honegger - founder of Noonday Collection
Paige Knudsen - blogger, photographer and Noonday Ambassador
Wynne Elder - blogger, photographer and Noonday Ambassador (also another Baylor Alum!)
and hopefully me!! (if you VOTE HERE)