He speaks in dreams, in visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on people as they lie in their beds.
Job 13:15 (NLT)
I am a dreamer. I don’t mean that I while away my days in aimless thought. Rather, I experience a nocturnal adventure in my mind most every night! I think I may have inherited this trait from my Grandmother. She was a dreamer too and according to some folkloric advice, taught me to never share my dream before breakfast lest in come true! So, after I have eaten my breakfast, I will recount to my husband (or anyone else who will listen) my tale that occurred while I slept.
I don’t often have nightmares. My dreams are usually some fantastic story my subconscious mind has woven together, using the bits and pieces of the previous day’s events, conversations or concerns. Sometimes they feel quite real and I wake up either relieved (that I’m not 53 and pregnant) or disappointed (that I’m not back in my youthful days of college). Most of the time they are just random and silly. Every once in a while I will have a dream that is so compelling I know it is from God. I had such a dream not to long ago.
Dreams from God are not unusual. The Bible mentions dreams about 100 times. Dreams can be prophetic or warnings. God spoke to Abraham in a dream. Jacob dreamed of a ladder connecting heaven and earth. Joseph dreamed of being in a place of superiority over his family and also interpreted the dreams of two fellow prisoners and Pharoah himself! Daniel had unusual dreams of future events. He was also able to interpret King Nebuchadneaazr’s dreams after he recounted what the king had dreamed! An angel visited Joseph in his dreams, first, to tell him he was to take Mary as his wife and later, to flee with her and the infant Jesus to Egypt. The Magi were warned in a dream to not return to Herod to tell him the location of the Christ child. Years later, Pilate’s wife urged him to have nothing to do with the uprising against Jesus because she had been greatly disturbed by a dream. The dream I had was not as significant as any of these dreams. It will not go down in history, but it was special to me because I believe it was a little gift from God.
About a month ago, I was on a mission trip to Guatemala with a group from my church. The trip was sponsored by Orphan’s Heart (orphan’sheart.org). We spent an amazing week assisting at their Malnutrition Center. It was a special week because the President and Vice-President of Orphan’s Heart as well as their wives were on the trip with us. It was also a special week because we were able to see the culmination of a major renovation to the center. Our team did a variety of tasks from changing diapers and feeding children to working in the kitchen. We told Bible stories, sang songs, made crafts and played with precious toddlers. Some of the men did yard work and even strung lights down a roadway. Food was distributed to families and children who had left the center were evaluated to make sure they were continuing to do well. During all of these activities, there was an underlying sense of anticipation. We were getting ready for Thursday’s dedication of the new room for the canaries! What? A room for birds? Let me explain. The Malnutrition Center had grouped the children by development and given these groups animal names. The Squirrels and Ducks were the oldest. A step down from them were the Chicks and Bunnies. The Canaries were the babies. The neediest of the little ones were Dolphins. It was the Canaries and Dolphins who were about to be blessed with brand new rooms and the entire center was in a flurry of preparation for the event!
Finally, my dream. I woke up Thursday morning and told my friend that I had dreamed about the new Canary room. I made the comment to her “I wonder if it will look anything like my dream”? (I was skeptical because the room in my dream was very large, much larger than any of the other rooms at the center). Although I had spent the previous three days at the center, I had not seen the new rooms and I wasn’t even sure where they were located. That day was very busy with many special guests in attendance for the dedication, a special lunch and a birthday celebration which included a pinata, cake and firecrackers! After things had settled down and before we had to say goodbye I decided to go and take a look at the new Canary and Dolphin rooms. I walked into the Dolphin room where a few of our team members were rocking babies while others played on the floor. I said to one of the ladies, ” I dreamed about the new room last night and it looked similar to this but without those dividers”. Ioana said to me “you need to go look in the Canary room”. I turned and walked a few steps into the next room. I gasped, my hand flew to my mouth, a chill went up my spine and tears filled my eyes. I had dreamed of a large yellow room with a set of windows down the side with trees visible outside the window. It looked just like this.
It was as if God whispered into my spirit and said “this is my gift to you. You get so busy and preoccupied so I just wanted to give you this little reminder . . . yeah, I’m real”!