How to turn a dream into a reality. 

Martin Luther King’s influence on our world is characterized in four historical words: “I have a dream.” Every part of his journey, before and after those words uttered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, was linked to that statement.

Dr. King dreamed a dream. He looked beyond the present to the possible. He saw a time of freedom in a time of bondage. He saw civility in an age of hatred. He saw advance in an era of oppression.

What is your dream? Does it permeate your every plan? Does it influence your every decision? Does it stretch your faith? Does it command your time? Your dream could take you places you never imagined. Ask Joseph imprisoned in the prison of the Egypt’s Pharaoh. Ask Jeremiah in the deeps of a well. Ask Paul and Silas under lock and key in Rome. Their oppression fueled their passion.

How can you turn a dream into reality?

Form it. Every dream has a preliminary design. Later it takes additional characteristics, but at the beginning it has a unique form. What does it look like? Is it a building? Is it a program? Keep track. Start a folder. Write down the basic s—including physical, financial, and social resources. Then add notes as it evolves, and place them in an online or hard copy folder.

Field it. The biblical wisdom says there is wisdom in many counselors. Vet your dream among your close friends and associates—without giving all the details. Their words of encouragement or advice could be the very thing motivates your dream.

Feed it. Media can play a huge part in the fulfillment of your dream. Make your dream the subject of your reading, viewing, or listening. Learn everything you can about the subject of your dream.

Follow it. The next step includes forward movement. Move in the direction of your dream. If it’s for real and for you, the burden of its fulfillment will increase rather than dull. Build the foundation. Think big but start small, escalating as the resources develop.

Author Bobb Biehl said in his book Dream Energy, “Dreams have the power to excite the imagination. Imagination in turn sparks inspiration. And inspiration is what motivates us.”

Dream on, my friend.