We like us some ice cream around here. Matt loves mint chocolate chip or butter pecan. Lydia loves plain vanilla. And me… I fell in love with the Target brand Archer Farms chocolate peanut butter fudge while I was pregnant with Lydi. Chocolate fudge ice cream with ribbons of peanut butter. Yes, oh yes. And then, when I was pregnant with Charlotte, I discovered Menchie’s caramel sea salt pretzel frozen yogurt, perfectly sweet with a kiss of salt. Delish. And, of course, there’s my dad’s homemade vanilla ice cream. I have about a billion memories attached to that ice cream, especially when eaten with salty breezes and sandy toes. I’ve had ice cream on the brain since it’s finally warm (Hooray!) and I heard the ice cream truck driving by yesterday afternoon when all the kiddos were getting out of school.
When I was younger, my favorite ice cream was an orange Dreamsicle push pop, the kind where you pushed up the little, white plastic straw until the yummy orange treat burst out of the cardboard tube. The creamy ice cream brightened by the tangy citrus was so yummy on a hot, muggy day. There was a bit of an art to getting the “push” just right. You couldn’t go too fast or it dripped everywhere. If you went too slow, you sort of ate cardboard.
Recently, I’ve been thinking about dreams. Not the kind you have when your head hits the pillow, but rather the kind you harbor in your heart. Wondering, imagining, thinking… “What if?” Lately, I’ve had several dear friends speak into a particular dream of mine and it’s reminded me how powerful encouragement can be. We can speak life into one another’s dreams. We can give them the push they need to chase an idea, follow a passion, start something new, pursue their “What if?”. A push to say, “I believe in you.” A push to say, “Go for it.” A push to say, “I’ll support you. I’ll cheer for you. I’ll be here.”
What if we looked beyond the surface of our friends and spoke to that tiny little sprout that’s taken root inside hoping to flourish one day? What if we brought a little sweetness to our friends’ worlds and saw not just was is but what could be? What if we traded competition and jealousy, choosing instead to catapult others further than they could ever go on their own? Our words can be the push someone needs to be all that God created her to be.
Who in your life needs a little push today? And maybe a sticky, orange Dreamsicle push pop… just for good measure! 😉