Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers they only hated him the more. Genesis 37:5
When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream. Psalm 126:1
Despite the cynics and the critics, the doubters and the detractors, the haters and the hecklers, Homer Hickman dreamed a dream. He dreamed of beating the odds and becoming something other than a coalminer. And he did just that. He got out of “Dodge.” Dodge for Homer was the coal mine where he was destined to work for the rest of his life.
October Sky, a 1999 biographical film, is the true story of Homer Hickam, a coal miner’s son who was inspired by the first Sputnik launch to take up rocketry against his father’s wishes. In his hometown of Coalwood, West Virginia, the coal mine was the town’s largest employer and almost every man living in the town worked in the mines. John Hickam (Chris Cooper), the mine superintendent, loves his job and hopes that his boys, Jim and Homer Hickam (Jake Gyllenhaal), will one day join him in his mine. When it appears that Jim will receive a football scholarship to attend college, this leaves Homer to fulfill his father’s dream, although his mother, Elsie, hopes for more for her son.
Initially, his family and later his classmates think he has gone crazy and is wasting his time. However, with the help of his friends the “Rocket Boys” and support from their science teacher, he wins the National Science fair, a college scholarship and the respect of entire town of Coalwood, and his father as well. Homer Hickman eventually became a NASA engineer.
Joseph dreamed dreams. He saw himself differently than everyone else saw him. He saw things that his brothers hated him for and his father criticized him for. Yet he dreamed. And he held on tight to his dreams.
What do you dream? What do you hope for? What do you see that few others, if anyone else sees? I hope for the unity of the Body of Christ. I hope for the righteous to be in authority. I hope for the underdog. I hope for upsets, comebacks and turnarounds. And I hold on tight to my dreams. Sing with me:
It’s a long time to be gone
Time just rolls on and on
When you need a shoulder to cry on
When you get so sick of trying
Just hold tight to your dream
When you get so down that you can’t get up
And you want so much but you’re all out of luck
When you’re so downhearted and misunderstood
Just over & over & over you could
Hold on tight to your dream
Hold on tight to your dream
When you see the shadows falling
When you hear that cold wind calling
Hold on tight to your dream.
Electric Light Orchestra, 1981
Paul encourages us this way: “Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
Romans 8:24-25, NIV