Lately I’ve been challenged by the way I choose to dream. The idea was first brought to my attention at last years Everywoman Gathering. After the conference I took some time to sit by the lake, and write down all the dreams I had tucked away in my heart- even the things I was too afraid to share out loud. One of which was a stirring passion to use my skill as a journalist to tell the stories of C3 Churches all around the world, especially the ones in remote and often high-risk places.
Six months later an opportunity arose for me to document a church in West Bengal, India. But it meant I had to make some big decisions and sacrifice a few things that gave me security. One of which was money. After buying my flights to India I walked away with $3.70 to my name and a sense of feeling well and truly uncomfortable. I found a few extra gold coins at the bottom of my bag, and was able to buy a toasty from Subway, a bottle of water and parking at Uni the next day. Down to the dollar, but still never going without we embarked on our journey. The church itself was a feat to get to, taking us on a 4 hour journey in a rusty, old jeep across the base of the Himalaya with 16 passengers crammed inside and our feet dangling over the exhaust pipe. Covered in dust and sweat our arrival was far from pretty, but we were welcomed into the Pastors homes with open arms. Siliguri is the centre of trade across West Bengal, the heart of the region and a place Pastor John and Carlin had moved to in order to be a witness to many. They dreamt of bringing Christ to a predominantly Muslim and Hindu community. They were dreaming of building their own church, of reaching the lost, of making a difference in their community, regardless of personal cost.
In the book of Genesis, when God first filled Adams lungs in the Garden of Eden, a transferral took place. Life from the creator found it’s home in the created. If we can come to realise that our God is the God who breathes stars, we can begin to imagine the potential he has breathed into us. This star forming, world-shaping breath should give us the confidence to dream things we couldn’t possibly accomplish on our own; to dream of things that challenge us or make us uncomfortable. What if we were supposed to not just dream again, but to dream dangerously?
On my travels I encountered a phrase: “White picket fence Christianity”. It was this idea of living a comfortable Christian life - one that looked good, felt secure and didn’t require too much sacrifice. A white picket fence represents normality, financial security and even monotony. And I think that’s the furthest thing from the kind of existence God calls us too. Instead it’s the kind of faith that keeps us on our toes, that is more precious to us than gold and more important to us than temporary satisfaction on this earth.
Our dreams should line up with such radical faith. They shouldn’t be safe, they shouldn’t be secure and they certainly shouldn’t be normal. Our dreams should be erring on the wild side, forcing us to rely 110% on the one who gives our dreams life.
To not simply dream again, but learn to dream dangerously.
Bethany’s piece on C3 Church Siliguri can be found on C3 Church Global.
About Bethany Ross
Bethany Ross is a 22-year old journalist originally from small town Bowral and currently part of the team at C3 Cronulla. With her camera wielding boyfriend, she co-founded The Messengers Global and is currently telling stories from all over the world. She prefers to be in a slum or warzone over a coffee shop or mall any day. Her heart burns for uniting the Global Church and empowering world changers through story.