Let Us Have a Vivid Dream of the Gospel

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A teacher, a painter, a singer, a police officer, a scientist, or the President of a country. . .

In our school days, we might have written these dreams on our personality description forms as our future jobs. But when we graduated from school and started our life as social members, how many of us were able to fulfill the dreams that we had had in our childhood? There are not many who realize the dreams that they dreamed in their childhood as well as in their lives after childhood. People say that their interest changed or their circumstances did not allow them to realize their dreams. Under these excuses, people just keep their dreams in their hearts as unreal dreams and gradually forget them.

Then, what is the difference between the people who accomplish their dreams and the people who fail? To begin with, those who accomplish their dreams have an untiring passion, firm faith, desperate effort, and a will of iron. However, there is something else that is as important as the above things. That is the “ability to dream.”

People Who Recorded Their Dreams

According to a survey conducted on graduates from Yale University in the US in 1953, only 3 percent of the graduates had notebooks in which their dreams were written. 20 years later, the same graduates were asked about the degree of their happiness. The result was that the 3 percent of the graduates who wrote their dreams in their notebooks were living much happier lives than others. They were achieving their goals one by one written in their notebooks 20 years ago.

In 1972, the US magazine “Life” dealt with a story of John Goddard, an explorer, which became a topic of conversation. It was about his dreams. In his boyhood, he wrote 127 dreams in his diary that he wanted to fulfill in his lifetime: climbing the major highest points in the world, exploring large rivers, learning how to operate an airplane, and reading the complete set of Britannica encyclopedias. Those were neither simple nor easy, but he realized the dreams one by one and achieved almost all of them within his 50 years.

There is another story that happened at a high school in the US several decades ago. A teacher gave students homework of writing their dreams that they wanted to achieve when they grew up. All students submitted their visions of what they wanted to be. But in the teacher’s eyes, all their dreams looked unreal. In order to let them gain a realistic insight, he ordered them to write their dreams again, pointing out the farfetchedness of their dreams. Students wrote their sensible dreams, considering their home background and school record fully.

However, a student named Monty was an exception. At that time he was living in the back of a truck with his father who did odd jobs, traveling from farm to farm. He handed in his homework without adjusting his dream: “I will own 200 acres of farm land and train thoroughbred horses by hiring racehorse trainers.” His dream plan was seven-page long that included a vivid bird’s-eye view of the farm, its structure where horses would race, and the number of livestock as well as the wranglers in details. Even though the teacher persuaded him to change his dream, pointing out how unrealistic it was, Monty didn’t bend his will, and the teacher gave him a failing grade. A few decades later, there appeared a farm in the State of California, USA, which was almost the same with what Monty had written in his diary. The owner of the farm was, of course, “Monty.” Recording a dream in a notebook seems too simple, as one of the ways to fulfill it, but this easy deed resulted in good success by bringing forth infinite power to realize a dream.

Amazing Energy That a Dream Produces

Recently, a secret of success attracted people’s attention: “Although we don’t write what we dream of, if we dream of it vividly in mind, it surely comes true.” This is called the “R=VD Theory”: If we have a Vivid Dream, we can see the Realization of the dream.

Conrad Hilton, the biggest hotel tycoon who built over 250 hotels in the world, said positively, “A man’s future depends on the picture drawn vividly in his mind, not on his talent.” When he was a bell boy at a hotel, he put a photo of the biggest hotel in the US on his desk and “intensely” imagined becoming the hotel owner. He did not simply dream for the future, but vividly pictured his future in his mind, dozens of times a day. 15 years later, he actually became the owner of the biggest hotel in America.

“When I worked at a hotel, there were co-workers around me in the same situation as me: many were superior to me in the ability to manage and many worked harder than me. But I succeeded. The most important thing for success is the ability to dream.” As he mentioned, the ability to dream is not a meaningless illusion but a major method for the realization of the dream.

This may be a common experience for each of us: When we decide to buy shoes and go out, we come to focus on other people’s shoes. In the same way, a woman with a child comes to pay attention to pregnant women, and young adults in need of a job catch sight of a want ad with just a few lines. What makes these phenomena happen? That’s because of the RAS [Reticular Activating System] of the brain.

This RAS secretes a neurotransmitter that controls the power of attention and concentration and enables the brain to learn, self-control, and motivate with a special function that lodges only important information in the brain. In other words, it prevents the state of disorder in the brain by blocking the access of unimportant information to the brain and only reacting to what is of interest. Therefore if our brains recognize what is important and what to focus on, we can get information and knowledge unconsciously which are related to our goals and also act on what is needed for our wishes.

A study at Harvard University reported that a habit of having a vivid dream has an effect on the reticular nervous system. The researchers divided subjects who had the same degree of knowledge into two groups, and let one group of people have a vivid dream of completing their task successfully and let the other group of people continue doing things as they normally did. While the second group performed only 55% of their assignment, the first group did 100%. Those subjects who imagined their dream vividly were able to focus on their task and showed the result of having a focused concentration.

If We Can Dream, We Can Achieve It

If it is true that what we dream of surely comes true, there are no other things easier than fulfilling dreams. Then, why can many people not achieve their dreams? It is because there are many factors around them that keep them from dreaming their dreams to the fullest: distance between dream and reality, people’s negative views about the dream, and the loss of the value of the dream. Such obstacles make people lose the first passion they had for the dream. As a result, they begin to think much negatively: ‘How can I accomplish such a great feat?’ ‘I’m satisfied with the present. Do I need to try harder to realize the dream?’ Many give up their dreams, feeling complacent in the present.

Steven Spielberg, the world-renowned movie producer, started to have a dream of becoming a movie director when he was 12 years old. In an interview he said, “I didn’t simply hope to be a director, but I pictured my dream vividly. And I actually made it.” Of course, his dream did not come true right away. Even after he entered the movie world, he was an outcast for over nine years but he finally met a producer who appreciated his view on movies, and made his directorial debut with a movie selected as a prizewinner at the Venice International Film Festival.

Dreams change one’s life. Human history has proceeded by people who keep their dreams until the end. All the richness we enjoy in this age is the realization of the dreams that people of the past had.

The dream of flying in the sky came close to being buried forever by a negative-style of thinking that it was impossible to achieve, but it was finally realized by those who kept the dream until the end. What about talking with people who live in the remote part of the world? It was merely a dream, but now we can talk conveniently with anyone in the world. By the people longing for the unknown, the American Continent was found and space exploration beyond our wildest imagination turned into a reality. These dreams were regarded as vain illusions a dreamer had and as utterly impossible, but they have now become reality.

They kept on dreaming vividly until their dreams came true and overcame every trial that beset them with a strong will, regarding it as a process of achieving their goal. In any circumstances, they kept their dream fresh until the end, by ruminating on their dream and renewing the understanding of its value, and finally all their efforts turned to a beautiful fruit, namely, “success.”

Let Us Have a Vivid Dream for the Gospel

What did Esau, the first son of Isaac, dream about his future? He was the firstborn, so he might have thought if he just spent the time doing this and that, he would inherit his father’s estate after Isaac passed away. On the other hand, Jacob, the second son, must have desired eagerly to receive the blessing of the firstborn to be an heir of the family. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have said, “First sell me your birthright” when he was cooking stew and his hungry brother asked him for some. Since he had been keeping it in his mind as a long-cherished wish, he took the chance of a lifetime in an unexpected situation and eventually gained the birthright with the help of his mother, Rebecca, who knew his earnest desire to receive the birthright blessing.

How about the apostles’ dream? It was very difficult for them to believe what Jesus prophesied: The gospel would be preached throughout the world. Despite that, they boldly preached the gospel in the Gentile countries even in many hardships and sufferings. This shows that they must have dreamed of the gospel vividly, absolutely trusting in the vision Jesus Christ had revealed.

Now, let us look back at ourselves and check how vividly we dream in the truth. God has chosen us as a royal priesthood of heaven (1Pe 2:9). Although we are now in a low state with nothing to boast about, we have the promise of blessing as heavenly children who will enjoy glory in heaven forever and ever.

“. . . at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book will be delivered. Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.” Da 12:1-3

This prophecy is a definite promise of God, which is a clear vision and dream as well, given to us today. This precious dream can be achieved only by those who dream it vividly. If we neglect the value of the gospel because of our present circumstances and unfavorable views of people around us, it will only remain an empty dream. But if we have a vivid description of the dream, God will give us an infinite ability to radiate the amazing energy for the gospel so that we can achieve the dream.

Our dream is totally different from that of the people in this world who long for earthly things. While their dream is restricted to this world, our dream for the gospel is extended endlessly in the eternal world. Above all, we have the greatest benefit to accomplish our dream: We have Heavenly Mother who helps us fulfill the dream. Mother is with us on this earth and encourages us to have a vivid dream for the gospel, without forgetting it, and run toward the dream so that we will achieve it in the end.

If any of us has never had a vivid dream of the gospel so far and not experienced the amazing energy of the gospel which the dream possesses, try from now on. Have a “strong and vivid” dream of becoming a royal priesthood and a king who reigns forever and ever in heaven. Your whole heart, eyes and ears will be opened wide and your steps toward the dream will be faster. And finally the dream will turn to reality before you. It is because the dream belongs to those who dream it vividly.