I woke up with a strange dream this morning. I was standing in front of someone I knew as was both a pastor and a trainer. We were both in a church not dissimilar to a church that we were both associated with. This man was speaking gently to me. I was told that I had flunked the last stage of the test. I was going to be held back a bit and given another chance to pass.
The strange thing about this scene was that it was all bathed in love. Real tangible love poured from the person standing in front of me. So much love flowed from this pastor/trainer figure that they must be representing God. Remember dreams can be night parables with people representing an aspect of God such as with the prodigal’s father.
I was shown that it was possible to pass the test as someone else had. Yet failure did not bring condemnation, It brought love. The human being representing God in my dream said that failing and not moving to the next stage would give them another opportunity to love me through the test. It was that love relationship that mattered more than passing the practical test to fulfil the role that they had in mind for me. It was not the work I was supposed to be doing and had not done that was important but the relationship.
Why are dreams important?
God speaks to people through dreams in the bible. Just ask Joseph. Which one? Well both of them! Joseph Jacob’s son and Joseph Mary’s intended husband were both had dreams that told something about God’s plan for their lives. That knowledge helped both of them being able to fulfil God’s plan for their lives. Not just their lives but enabled to fulfil their role in the entire biblical narrative.
I knew that there were things that I was supposed to be doing and had not. One was not writing journal entries as often as I should. I was being shown all sorts of ideas that should have become entries but had not written them up. I simply found excuses and did other things instead.
That would not have been so bad if I had successfully completed the tasks that were distracting me. Oops, I got so far with them and then hit obstacles. One practical obstacle took me two or three days to overcome despite managing to overcome the exact same issue elsewhere. I quite simply had forgotten that I had already done it so had not checked how I had done it. I remembered that what I was trying to do was possible but I just could not figure out how to do it. I tried all sorts of ways around the issue and learnt some things on the way. No wonder I did not reach my intended destination.
Then, of course, thee were the non-essentials that filled my time. These were more like distraction activities. You know that you should be doing this but doing that is so much easier so I will do that instead. Oh dear, how can the essentials be done if you are filling your time with non-essentials.
OK, this is classic self-development or how to be a success stuff. Yet that dreams shows something that is quite different about the normal Christian walk. Yes, it is the love. You might have failed the test but there is a chance to resit it. God the trainer does no shout or condemn. God the trainer says that this is a chance for me to love you and build our relationship so that you are stronger to pass the test next time.
How do you know if a dream is really from God?
One test is does it line up with scripture. Well, what happens when we accept that we have done wrong and are willing to do things differently? The normal response is to be loved and accepted by God. This is easier for Him than use because he truly understands when we have fully accepted that we have gone wrong and are worth a second chance.
There again the Bible does leave God’s options open as in Zacchariah there is mention of people who have ignored God for so long that he is no longer willing to help them. However, this is an extreme situation e.g. a long-term denial for decades and at the same time hurting others in significant ways. The normal situation is to love and support people i.e. strengthen them and support them so that they can succeed.
A month or so ago I drew up a plan of action for 3 or 4 areas of my life. Some of them I have made progress with and others I have allowed to get pushed out of the way. The action points on this plan included:
- Writing a journal entry on this site 5 times a week i.e Monday to Friday to share what God has shown me.
- Write and publish 15 kindle books by a set deadline i.e about one every 6 weeks. This also included enacting the marketing plan.
- Keep on top of the jobs around the house and even deal with the backlog of jobs from my recent move.
- Work on developing the social enterprise/ministry that I have set up a few years ago.
Part of the problem is obvious. There is a lot of things on that list, probably enough to keep me occupied for 120 hours a week. By the time you leave space for essentials like church, prayer and sleep there is not much time left in the week.
Time management i.e. managing myself so that I make the best use of the time available has never been one of my strengths. So many possibilities and so little focus. That was why I tried making a plan. Problem was that the old temptation struck again. Get so far and when it gets too hard change tack so that I do something else. No wonder I have a stream of partly finished projects behind me.
Sounds so horribly familiar. I sorted out some dressmaking projects and found partly made dresses for a toddler who is now in her 30s. I had got to a difficult bit and put it away until later. All that had changed was the type of project that was left uncompleted.
There are some things that need to be tamed. The thing is I am a work in progress. So much so that I honestly wonder why on earth I started this website or even dared to use that old prophecy to name it. Of course, that is why it has taken so long to get this far. Too many stumbles and setbacks and delays. Who knows what will happen next. The only thing I can do is keep on stepping forwards and seeing just how far I get. After all, I am only human!