My recent dreams have been like chapters from a novel I haven’t read, not scary, not fantastic, just bits of life going on as usual for somebody. Occasionally they contain someone I know, a relative or friend, but most of the time the “cast” are strangers to me.
While I generally recall these dreams when I first awake, I don’t remember much about them after a few minutes. They aren’t disturbing, not even annoying – they just are.
But this past Sunday night as I was preparing to sleep, I asked the Lord to give me something more spiritual, more useful in a dream. And He did.
I was standing in a room in a building, furniture scattered around as if an office was being furnished, the placement of chairs and tables and desks experimented with to get the best arrangement. I was talking to a young man who was preparing to begin work of some kind there in that place. No-one else was there.
He was standing beside me, listening with a concentrated air as if he had just stopped what he was doing to pay attention.
There are three essentials you need, I told him.
First, you need an advisor. Someone who knows the voice of the Lord and can tell you if you are making the right decisions, choosing the right things, going the right way. Someone you trust and have confidence in. Someone who will inspire your own self-confidence, knowing your path is the right one for you. Someone who will warn you if you start off in the wrong direction, who can explain things in a practical way, teach you and mentor you.
Second, you need a team. You must not try to do everything by yourself, you’ll wear out, burn out, fall and fail. You’ll make mistakes, some of which may be very costly. Choose your team mates carefully, pick people with the same vision but who have expertise in areas where you’re lacking. People you can trust with the details while you concentrate on the big picture.
Third, you need a refuge. A private place where you can spend time with God, worship, study, meditate, pray, listen to the Holy Spirit, rest and heal. It can be a chair in a quiet room, or a study, or a den, or a bedroom, but it needs to be dedicated to you and God as that refuge.
At that point I awoke, clearly recalling the dream and grateful for this answer to my prayer.