Any Dream Will Do
Andrew Fox of Chesterfield, England
Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you. -James 4:8, 10
Monica had five children aged eight and younger when her husband left her. In order to feed her children, she took on two jobs. The first was at Albert Staples’ fish and chip shop. The other was in a children’s home run by Mrs. Willows. Albert and Mrs. Willows were both members of my home congregation, and they both invited Monica to church. I still remember the day almost fifty years ago when Monica came to church for the first time with her five young children. From then on Monica was an integral part of my congregation and my life. She was my Sunday school teacher. We served on committees together. And in her later years, we often shared a cup of tea.
Just over a year ago I visited Monica in her home. She was very ill. On the day of my visit Monica had been listening to a recording of the musical Joseph and His Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Forty years ago, our congregation had rehearsed and performed it. Whenever there was a lull in our conversation, she would start to sing the opening lines of “Any Dream Will Do,” written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice in 1968: “I closed my eyes, drew back the curtain, to know for certain what I thought I knew.”
As she sang, I joined in. I am sure to most people’s ears we were making a dreadful noise, but what joy there was in our hearts as we sang together! The lines of this song seemed to sum up Monica’s faith. Her life, like that of Joseph, had been full of ups and downs. She endured many tragedies, but through it all, her faith was unwavering.
A few months later I found myself speaking at Monica’s funeral and told of our beautifully discordant duet. I reflected on the life of a woman who had a dream, a vision grounded in her faith in a loving God. What a blessing it is to have such people of faith in our lives.
“Be vulnerable to divine grace” (Doctrine and Covenants Section 163:10b).
This month, spend time each day noticing where divine grace is already pouring forth. Perhaps it is a simple awareness of creation’s systems and cycles that support our daily existence. The sun rises each day without being asked. There are underlying rhythms and relationships that hold the fabric of our lives together. Sometimes they fall into the background of our lives. We forget to see the natural generosity that spills over throughout our days-of the planet, the people we love, the Sacred Presence in all moments, the kindness of strangers we encounter, and the gifts we carry within. What is already being given in your life? What does it look like to be vulnerable to divine grace today?
Today’s Prayer for Peace
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