I’ve never been a dreamer. Until a few weeks ago I could probably count on one hand the number of dreams I’d had that were memorable. But a few weeks back I began to really dive into the scriptures and to lengthen/deepen my prayer time. I read that familiar verse in Acts 2:17:
‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.”
That verse triggered something in me (in a good way). I’m (obviously) not a man, but the words, “your old men will dream dreams” jumped out at me. I thought, “How cool would that be, to actually have dreams of significance?” So, I prayed for that very thing. And, at the same time I was praying “God, make me a dreamer in these last days,” I was also praying something else: “God, use my writing in new and exciting ways.”
It should have come as no surprise when the dreams started. I did ask for them, after all. But, to “unpack” them (to ask God about the significance of each one) has been the fun part. I’m not one of those “God spoke to me” types, but I do hear His still, small voice in my heart (and especially when I’ve been deep in prayer with Him). So, it’s been lovely to hear it so frequently these days. I don’t know about you, but I really need His input right about now!
All of that was the preface to the dream I’m about to share. I just had it a few hours ago, so it’s fresh on my mind. Here goes:
In the dream I’d gone to a restaurant late in the evening with several Christian friends. After eating, we were all tired and very full. We couldn’t wait to get back to the hotel where we were staying. The restaurant emptied and the manager walked our way, looking exhausted. He asked if we would consider staying and helping them clean the back rooms (kitchen and beyond) because they were short on help. The other ladies in my group were too tired and wanted to go back to the hotel. I told my friend (who was driving): “Go ahead and take them back, then come back and get me.”
They left and I followed the manager into the massive restaurant kitchen. I was SO shocked at how filthy it was. The floor was absolutely covered in bits of food and other debris. The manager handed me a small, worn-out broom, and said, “I need you to sweep all of the floors and then mop.”
This place was HUGE, y’all. Like, it went on for miles. I was so overwhelmed. But I took my (seemingly-ineffective, tiny) broom and started sweeping the outer perimeters, saving the kitchen for last. A young man joined me with his larger broom, and together we made a bit of progress in the outlying areas. I kept going, moving from room to room with my broom in hand. Along the way, I kept stumbling into treasures among the debris on the floor. I had the strongest sense that the manager was going to let me keep the treasures I’d found and I was so happy.
As I continued sweeping, I soon found myself in a small back room and I heard a man’s voice. I looked over to see an important dignitary on the telephone. He was sharing information that was top secret, and there I was, hearing all of it! I just kept on sweeping, listening to all he said, and thinking, “Whoa. I’m the only one hearing this! How cool is this?!”
I kept working until I came back around to the (still messy) kitchen floor. The biggest job was still ahead of me. That’s when I woke up.
I stayed in bed for some time in total silence, just listening, thinking about what it all meant. Then, just as clearly as I’ve EVER heard that still, small voice, I heard the words: “Prayer is the hard work.”
STAY AND PRAY.
That was the message of the dream.
- Stay and pray when others can’t.
- Stay and pray when you’re tired and don’t feel like it.
- Stay and pray when the situation in front of you is a massive mess.
- Stay and pray when the condition of those you’re praying for seems impossible.
- Stay and pray when your prayers seems ineffective.
- Stay and pray when it feels tedious.
- Stay and pray because there are treasures to be found.
- Stay and pray because doing so will open you up to hearing that great Dignitary’s voice in ways that others will not, (because you refused to give up).
For the love of all that’s holy and BECAUSE OF all that’s not. . .stay and pray.