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Why not dream a little smaller?

This morning, Rob and I worked at World Fare, the volunteer-run fair trade store we helped found in Three Rivers in 2003. Word has continued to circulate around town about our plans for Huss School and the Imagining Space project and one theme of the responses we’re hearing lately regards the huge-ness of this dream. Some folks are refreshed and inspired, while others are terrified.

One of the questions we’ve heard several times is, “Why not start a little smaller?” Honestly, we’ve asked ourselves that question. And we have to be prepared to change courses to something different or smaller depending on how fundraising goes over the next several days.

That said, going big has its advantages. Imaginative audacity has a way of cutting through the noise of the mundane, of helping people remember that our lives and communities are infinitely interesting, chock full of possibility. There are logistical reasons as well. Pursuing a space that can hold many kinds of interwoven programming increases points of educational and relational connection for everyone. It also holds greater potential for funding from state and federal sources, as well as private foundations, as each program’s purpose can be enhanced by the others.

Here’s what one thoughtful Three Rivers follower of the Imagining Space project sent over a couple of days ago:

By the way, you guys rock! Never in my wildest dreams did I ever envision such cool things happening in Three Rivers. Like your friend said in the quote you have on the *cino web site (though greatly paraphrased), even if you fail, you will have failed in such a spectacular way. Not in a half-hearted, barely tried kinda way. Attempting to realize such a magnificent goal, dreaming big and taking such a great risk takes heart, passion, and more faith than I can understand. And in the end, the failure will not be a failure but an opportunity to regroup and address your dreams in a different and unique perspective. Perhaps an opportunity will open up that wasn’t possible before. Keep going forward. Both of you are inspiring people around you through example in such a powerful way.

We are so grateful for encouragement like this that recognizes the challenges of the project, while also reveling in its possibilities for collective imagination and dreaming big.

Kirstin Vander Giessen-Reitsma

Kirstin is a member of the *culture is not optional core community and is the Head Caretaker at GilChrist Retreat Center.