Sunday’s Wisdom #141: Do Not Dream in Vain

“They all dreamed of the glory victory would bring, none more than Wulfric, but dreaming alone would not bring it about.”
– From The Wolf in the North, by Duncan M. Hamilton

This is from a book I just recently read and enjoyed, and you can expect a review fairly soon. 🙂

Wulfric, the main character, is a typical teenage boy at this moment in the story. He’s been bullied until fairly recently, but having gained some real-world experience with life and death, he’s also gained a little backbone and drive to succeed. As he’s about to enter his first competition alongside the other boys, he’s reflecting on what he wants, and that is simple: he wants to show his home village, especially the girl he has feelings for, that he is not the weakling he used to be. He doesn’t need anyone’s pity anymore. He’s becoming a man, a strong, young man.

So, in addition to the local fame he can gain, he hopes to impress her.

He’s been learning, however, that wanting something, and dreaming about it, that alone does not get the job done. True, no job gets done at all without the desire to do it, but unless that desire is turned into the drive to do the work necessary for it, it will remain nothing more than a dream.

Sometimes, even then, it’s not enough. Which every boy in the competition learns, Wulfric among them. He was determined to win, but he lost focus for a moment, trying to show off for the girl instead of winning the competition. So, he didn’t win. He lost, and was humbled by the experience. All the more so because he knew going in that he had to give it his all, but he still failed to do so.

He failed to win, and he failed to impress.

He was, for a moment, too busy dreaming to actually do what he dreamed of doing.

The lesson Wulfric learned, besides humility, was the discipline of focusing on the task at hand. And that is how he was eventually able to achieve what he dreamed of.

Eventually, Wulfric becomes a great warrior, famous and renowned throughout the land, and loved by the woman he loves. This was undoubtedly an important step in that direction.

The same holds true for us and our dreams.

If we dream only, we dream in vain.

But if we dream and do something about it… who knows? We might just succeed.

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