One of the greatest scenes in any movie, ever, is where Rudy is carried off the field by his teammates. Arms raised high, crowd going wild, a young man’s wildest dream being lived out. He didn’t make the game-winning play, he didn’t break any records. In fact, it was the first game he had ever even played in. Yet, those two hands, thrusted towards the heavens, sums up what I think lives in all of us. We’ll come back to Rudy in a minute. 

     My whole life, possibly to a fault, I’ve been a dreamer. I think it’s where my oldest daughter gets it from. Let me share some of my never-spoken-out loud “Fantasy Land” moments. I’ve dreamed of seeing my artwork in a museum, selling for ridiculous amounts of money to people with bad taste. I’ve dreamed of getting contacted because someone wants to feature my blogs or videos globally. I’ve dreamed of filling a youth room with 400 students every week, hearing life-changing sermons. I’ve dreamed of being asked to speak at high-level conferences around the U.S. 

    Probably the biggest dream was music. Even at 6 years old, I saw myself playing on stages reminiscent of a Foo-Fighters concert. Big lights, roadies, songs on the radio that everyone knew. This one is actually a little embarrassing, but ironically not many people will read this, so no biggie. I used to imagine getting a song I wrote for my nephew picked up and recorded by some big time artist. It would go number one, I would be nominated for “song of the year” and would win. I even went as far as to picture the red dress my wife would wear as we both sobbed at the amazement of winning. The speech, the tears, the award held high as I gave God the glory. Yep… It’s true. I would play that scene over and over in my head, for years. 

For some reason, I truly believed it could all happen. But so far, no emails, phone calls, letters in the mail or invitations. 

    PLEASE, don’t misunderstand my heart here. Yes, I have many things to cheer about. Unbelievably amazing children who love the Lord and live with integrity and strength. A marriage that fights through trials and tribulations to someone WAY out of my league. The list goes on and on and I treasure those. But I’m talking about those ridiculous, seemingly unattainable dreams that you would almost be embarrassed to tell people about (like I just did for some reason). 

    Now back to Rudy. Rudy was the most unlikely person to play football on the Notre Dame field. He was undersized, underrated and underappreciated even after years of being on the practice team. He stuck in there, always believing it could somehow happen, even if unlikely. And somehow, he saw his lifelong dream come to life in front of thousands of fans; most who never knew he existed. 

    Rudy was the only player in Notre Dame history to ever be carried off the field by his team. The crowd cheered his name, the stadium was electric… all for him. But, and here’s the heart of this whole blog, that’s not why Rudy has his hands in the air. It wasn’t about everyone noticing or recognizing him. It wasn’t about having his name fill the air or being the superstar of the day. It was simply a declaration of one personal message,

“I did it!”

    That scene is the backdrop to my own dreams. For me, it’s not about the fame, the prestige or the superstar moments. Those things are shallow and fleeting. It’s simply, despite seemingly unattainable moments and “Fantasy Land” dreams, being able to raise my hands up and say, “I did it”! It’s really just for myself. The personal victory. 

    I bet you have those dreams too. Maybe you’d never say them out loud or post them in a blog, but you have em’. Dare to dream! It’s what keeps us alive inside! It’s what keeps me thinking today may be the day I get the call or email. Dream big, dream often and maybe one day you’ll be carried off the proverbial field, hands held high saying,

“I did it”! 

PS, if you have not seen this movie, do yourself a huge favor and change that!

“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”  –  Walt Disney

Ephesians 3:20 “God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams.”