I always knew I wanted to be great at something, but I have not been able to figure out what it is. I dreamt of being a great athlete, but I never worked hard enough in the off-season. I always wanted to be a great musician or singer, but I never practiced enough. I thought I could be a great teacher, but I don’t spend enough time planning and thinking about how my students will hear my lessons. Maybe I could be a great coach, but I don’t devote enough time to it. I had the opportunity to be a great leader of men, but I am too distracted by other things to focus on the task at hand. I even think I could be a great writer, but I just don’t spend enough time writing. Not that I don’t have any talent in these areas, but I try to do too many of them. In fact, I’m fairly good at all of these things, but not great at any of them.
We have all heard the story of the baseball player who spent hours and hours practicing throwing the ball through a tire or bouncing it off the house, or the basketball player who spent all of his or her time shooting in the driveway with the dream of one day being a pro. We hear it from them when they have won a championship and they tell us that it was all they ever dreamt of and now they have achieved it. We hear the musician winning a Grammy and talking about how they first started singing when they were 2 and it’s all they ever wanted to do. I remember thinking, “I had that dream.” Most of us did at one point, but then the dream changes or we get otherwise distracted. Life gets in the way of our dreams, for some of us.
You might be like I am. I just haven’t been able to pick a dream. I have too many, and they get in the way of each other. Here I am, 47 years old, and I just haven’t been able to decide what I want to do when I grow up. Perhaps I am a Renaissance Man, you know, a “jack of all trades,” but I still have this burning desire to be great… at something. I don’t want it for my own fame or fortune (not that there is anything wrong with that), but I have always wanted to leave a mark on the lives of others. Sometimes I hear from students, from players, from men I serve with at church that I have changed their lives. I have even heard some professional musicians tell me I am a good harmonica player. I get just enough encouragement in all my dreams that I don’t let go of any of them.
No great advice for you today readers, just some commiseration for all of you distracted dreamers out there. You are not alone. Truth be told, I would really like to pick something and be great at it.