Dreams and Purpose

I want to remember that no one is going to make my dreams come true for me … it is my job to get up every day and work toward the things that are deepest in my heart … and to enjoy every step of the journey rather than wishing I was already where I want to end up. — Anonymous

Miracles start to happen when you give as much energy to your dreams as you do to your fears. — Anonymous

God is so good. A few years ago, I would have never guessed I’d be where I’m at today, but He has blessed me so abundantly.

I met Max on an employer-sponsored trip to Australia. We sat next to each other on the flight over. He was so funny. We started talking, and I felt like I had known him forever. During our trip, we spent the majority of our time together. We found we had so much in common, having lived in many of the same places over the years.

Max is much more outgoing and adventurous than I am, which I absolutely love. He brings me out of my shell and makes life fun; but he isn’t too adventurous … he doesn’t take unnecessary risks.

Max and I enjoy being in each other’s company, but we also enjoy doing our own thing. We love to travel (the majority of the time together) and have gone to such exciting places as Iceland and Bora Bora. When I’m busy working on a book, he is usually busy putting together a business deal. He’s taught me so much. I’ve always wanted to do philanthropic work, and now I have the chance. Max is a venture capitalist, who does a lot of work with nonprofits.

Last year, Max and I flew to New York in September to kick of a gala for The Jazz Gallery. This past August, we flew out to Napa Valley to attend the V Foundation’s fundraiser to help support brain cancer research. We try to get involved in two major events per year and are hoping to create our own foundation next year to help end human trafficking. We’re in the process of lining up a trip to India in May to meet with our associates there.

It will be a busy year. My next book is due out in August, so I will have to make the most of every opportunity and use my time wisely. Luckily, Max and I will be in New York again in December (we go every year to see Chris Botti play at The Blue Note on New Year’s Eve), so I’ll be able to meet with my publisher then as well.

Once the foundation is off to a good start, I’m thinking about going on the speaking circuit. God has laid on my heart a desire to minister to lonely, hurting, brokenhearted people who, because of poor choices they’ve made, find life isn’t going quite like they expected it would go. Through my writing and my speaking, I hope to inspire and encourage them to find their way to a better place … a place of hope and purpose, a place of love and fulfillment.

I am so grateful for Max. He has inspired me, loved me, and helped me to blossom into the person God created me to be. He makes me laugh, he values my opinion, and he encourages me to pursue my hopes and dreams. He has helped me to see that I am a person worth loving, a person with a lot to offer to others. He’s the mentor I’ve been searching for forever and my very best friend. We can sit and chat for hours, or we can spend hours together not saying a word, just enjoying being in each other’s presence. I think what makes it work so well is that we appreciate one another. We spend so much time apart—Max with his business and me with my writing—that when we are together, we fully value that time.

We enjoy doing lots of things … we especially love cooking. Most Saturday mornings, you will find us at the local farmer’s market or the local fish market. We then go home and do our own thing until midafternoon, when we meet in the kitchen, turn on some jazz, pour a glass of wine, and create our dinner. Sometimes we go out to see a movie afterwards or curl up on the couch and see what’s showing on Netflix.

I never used to get outside much, and I missed it desperately (having grown up in the country). Since meeting Max, I now spend a lot of time outdoors. We hike, bike, go kayaking enjoy picnics in the park, or go rowing. We both love sailing, and Max is slowly teaching me about cat paws and rigging. I may never be the captain, but I sure do enjoy the wind in the sails! There’s just something about blue skies and water that does a soul good.

My kids love Max. They appreciate his sense of humor as much as I do, and they are thrilled that he takes an interest in what is going on in their lives at any given moment. I’ve noticed that they often seek Max out for advice and use him as a sounding board for ideas they are contemplating.

Arianna has settled in Virginia and has taken a teaching job at a private school in the DC area. Josh is finishing his PhD in Economics at MIT. He did an internship at the UN last summer and is hoping to get a permanent job there after he graduates. Lexie is finishing up her Master’s at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She couldn’t decide if she wanted to continue to pursue a career in forensics pathology or pursue her writing. The writing won out, but it’s interesting to see that a lot of her stories deal with medical issues and hospitals. Nothing much has changed there.

I have learned that God really does use all things for good, and He does restore souls. He has restored mine. He has redeemed my life, and He has redeemed my children. Healing has come, and it is good.

Lori Lynn

Author’s Note: Max is not real, but he is based on a dear man I fell in love with in my 20s. This story is based on a writing assignment I was given a year ago where we were told, if you were to write your own ideal story, what would your story look like. This was my story. 🙂

I Don’t Want Social Media … I Want Friends!

When I was in 6th grade, I suffered a temporary bout of ostracism from every kid in my class with the exception of one girl, who was a bit of an outcast herself. The details of this sordid event escape me. I’m sure I did something to raise someone’s ire or the green horns of jealousy; but whatever the cause, the repercussions have been profound. Decades later, the effects are still felt. Pretty much every experience I encounter gets processed through the lens of rejection.

Although the ostracizing event blew over that summer and I went on to have many friends throughout junior high, high school, and college, I have found, as an adult, that I still frequently feel like an outcast.

I have a significant number of friends on Facebook (not thousands, because I’m very selective about whom I friend), but here’s the thing … I could have hundreds more if not for the cloudy vision of life I see through my cataracts of rejection, which cause the recurring tape in my head to say, “No one likes you, so they won’t want to be your friend.”) I realize this is faulty thinking. The friends I do have would assure me it just isn’t true. Nonetheless, my faulty thinking affects the outcome of my daily living.

Why do I care how many friends I have? If I really think about it, I don’t. I mean, in the big huge scheme of things, what really matters more … that other people like me or that I like myself? I mean, if I have thousands of friends on Facebook (or any other social media platform for that matter) but I don’t like myself, am I really happy?

We live in a technology-driven, ADHD world of nonconnection … plugged in and tuned out. I firmly believe it’s time to unplug and tune in … tune in with some real flesh and blood friends who truly care and are there when we need them.

I don’t want thousands of friends on Facebook. I want real friends … a dozen flesh and blood comrades in arms who will call me up periodically and invite me to do things with them. “Hey, Lori Lynn, Chris Botti is going to be in town. Want to go see him?” “Hey, Lori Lynn, I feel the need to go Christmas shopping in Chicago. Want to go?” “Hey, Lori Lynn, I’m contemplating signing up for a mission trip to India. You game?” To each of these, I would answer a resounding, “YES, definitely!”

I’m tired of being lonely. I’m tired of not having anyone to connect with in the flesh, so here’s what I’m planning to do for starters:

  • Contact a handful of high school friends, whom I haven’t seen in years, and invite them to my home for an evening of fun;
  • Start a weekly Bible study in my home to connect with a number of people I’ve met at various churches in my area;
  • Initiate new friendships by beginning a monthly book club.

I’m not a terribly social person … I tend to be an introvert … but I’m an introvert who needs to know I belong … that I matter to someone. I need to know there is someone out there who understands me or, if they don’t, are honest enough to say, “Ya know, I have no idea what you’re going through right now, but I’m here for you. How can I help?” Unfortunately, I don’t have many of those people in my life at this point; and I think what is so depressing about that is the fact that I was brought up to be that kind of person (which I was until the majority of people I encountered in life were more than happy to receive my help but weren’t able to reciprocate when I was the one needing help). Constantly meeting other people’s needs while your own continue to go unmet leads to burnout rather quickly.

A huge contributing factor to why my marriage ended after 22 years had to do with so much of this. My husband and I never went out with other couples; we rarely went out period. I longed to connect with another human being; my husband was content connecting to a computer or TV screen.

God designed us as relational beings … first and foremost to be in relationship with Him, yes, but also to be in relationship with others. It’s why He gave Eve to Adam. We need one another. We need encouragement when times are tough. We need hugs when we are hurting. We need companionship when we are lonely. A cyber hug just won’t do!

Lori Lynn


Dear LORD … Thank you for loving me and being my friend. I know You are always there for me and listen intently when I talk to You. You know my heart and the loneliness I feel. So today, LORD, I come before You and lay my loneliness at Your feet. I pray that You would send friends into my life … new friends as well as old … friends to laugh with, hands to hold, and arms to embrace me. I pray that they would be a support and encouragement to me, and I pray that I might be the same for them. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.