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Posts Tagged ‘Dreams’

zinnias

In late May, my husband armed my youngest with a spade, charging him with the knightly duty of uprooting insurgent roots in the garden. Like any knight worth his shield, helmet and, ummm, spade, he took to the task with vigilance.

Not a green leaf or its root remained.

Three packets worth of zinnias and 3 packets of cosmos , the promise of so much summer color and charm, were heaped in a wilted pile.

Realizing the error of this zealous knight-in-training, my husband worked with him to save as many zinnias as possible – and I loved that, that my son replanted as many zinnia seeds as he could – that’s a keeper story that goes straight to my heart – and that my husband showed him how, doing it with him.

Life is like that sometimes – the work of my hands – and your hands, too- is like seeds planted. Sometimes the results grow, blossom and reap a harvest – just like seed packet directions promise.

Sometimes, though, unexpected happenings interfere with what I perceive is normal cause-effect of my actions and expectations.

Sometimes my hopes and dreams feel as if they’ve been pulled out of mylife, like those zinnia seeds in my flower bed.

. . . . and maybe they have been. . . . but if I love what those zinnia seeds stand for – then maybe. . . . just maybe. . . . I need to replant new seeds – of the same thing I’ve done over and over – and let hope and faith in a Holy Spirit rain nourish the repetitive planting of those seed dreams..

Disgruntled? Cross-eyed with frustration? Tempted to cry, “Unfair?” – You bet!

I’m learning that while seed packages have seed-time and harvest directions with 30 to 60 day results – God’s plans don’t always have such a quick turn-around – ’cause He’s growing something bigger in us than a squash, a pepper, a cosmos and a zinnia.

Dreams He planted in you and me,  before we were born do have a seed-time and harvest – but it’s all on God’s time. Just like I didn’t want to give up on my zinnias; He doesn’t want me to give up on those dreams -even if I have to do things over and over and over – and over, over, over and over some more.

Maybe my zinnia basket in August wasn’t as full as I hoped it would be – but how dear the flowers of those zinnia seeds replanted.

I could have just given up. After all, it took till almost Fall for them to bloom – the summer almost done.

. . . but I didn’t give up. . . on the dream.  I replanted, though I had to wait longer than I wanted or expected.

The zinnias brought the joy I anticipated – just like I know the dream He planted will.

“Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.” (Galatians 6:9)

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birdfencec2

“‘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.(Acts 2:17)

Everywhere, piles of clothes – in the entry hall, in the bedrooms – everywhere little piles needing to be picked up, organized, cleaned.

Bending over, I grabbed up one pile. It stopped me cold. I stood, then bent closer. A bird’s nest, with 3 robin’s blue eggs just sat there, revealed in the uncovering.

I moved to another pile, one by the door, picked up the laundry – and a baby bird scuttled out of the nest, curving around me, twiggy legs and feet scampering out the opened front door.

Every pile revealed a bird’s nest, filled with eggs or chicks.

I hadn’t dreamed in a long time – but that night I dreamed of all those laundry piles, hazy darkness, the nests, the blue eggs, the yellow chicks, – dreamed before my surgery.

Some dreams are hope-revealed messages

I remember spending the night at my grandmother’s house, in the process of it becoming my house during the divorce. I dreamed my brother and I were trick-or-treating with neighborhood kids. It was a dark Halloween. We traveled all the way around the block. On returning, I wanted to run across the yard to my home, but these neighborhood friends suddenly turned into ghoulish villains holding me back, my fingers digging, tearing into my front-yard grass. My grandmother woke a sobbing me up.

Some dreams say what you cannot put into words

birdwings23cOne dream happened when one son was 5. I stored it in my heart, shared it with my husband – it was a story message from God telling me He would save my son. I revealed it to this son when he said, “I want to come home. I want to find God.”

Another dream I had, in amazing 3-dimensional detail, about a family homestead, showing how the Holy Spirit had flooded its rustic stone walls and floors, washing it clean of debri, a power washing. “It used to flood all the time,” said a guide in the dream. “It hasn’t for years now.” The Father was letting me know it was time, time for another flooding of the Holy Spirit waters through my family. It encouraged me to met the Holy Spirit, to invite it to wash through my family, to clean it of piled-up debri.

My husband had a recurring dream of an son endangered. This was a son with a stomach problem – and once we had him scoped, the problem identified – the dreams stopped. Our son was safe.

Some dreams are God-reveal dreams of  impending journeys, challenge along the journey, a heads-up-somethings-going-on dream. Sometimes, God wants us to know He will take care of it. Other times, He wants us to take care of it. Either way . . . . “Trust me,” He says.

birdbeach2cListening to my sons’ dreams, teaching them how to handle them is a mom job that is sometimes difficult, sometimes overwhelming – and sometimes it just  WOWs me.

One son, he used to struggle with night-terrors – or maybe they were pre-night terrors.

We established a bed-time routine designed to over-come those fears that come at night.

We read books designed to take his mind off whatever fears that provoked. Sang songs that ushered him past the bed-time jitters into beginning sleep. We prayed.

Nothing seemed to work – until one night we pulled out stories of men who faced fear in the bible and chose to trust God’s in the face of fearful things.

We talked about Joshua and Caleb who trusted God when everybody else chose fear:
“And Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes and said to all the congregation of the people of Israel, “The land, which we passed through to spy it out, is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delights in us, he will bring us into this land and give it to us, a land that flows with milk and honey. Only do not rebel against the Lord. And do not fear the people of the land, for they are bread for us. Their protection is removed from them, and the Lord is with us; do not fear them” (Numbers 14: 6-10)

“The Lord is with us; do not fear them”

Today, this son reads at bedtime – after we have our dwindling bed-time chronicles of the day. I guess at 14, things like bed-time chronicles with mom dwindle.

We talked about those dreams, though, one night.

“Do you have bad dreams?” I asked.

“No,” he said, settling in.

“What do you dream about?”

“Heaven” he said.

I sat there, just totally wowed. Heaven sounded better than nests of robin’s eggs.

“I just start thinking about what heaven’s like and I fall asleep thinking about it. Sometimes it becomes a dream.”

Some dreams are just sweet gifts from God.

“For the vision is yet for an appointed time and it hastens to the end [fulfillment]; it will not deceive or disappoint. Though it tarry, wait [earnestly] for it, because it will surely come; it will not be behindhand on its appointed day (Habakkuk 2:3)

Dreams for an appointed time. Dreams that tell of a journey designed to fulfill not destroy. The journey of the message or revelation cannot be hurried. Wait expectantly because God has assured it. He doesn’t send empty messages. The unfolding journey of a God-dream will fulfill itself right on time.

The hope in that sustains this mother’s heart, this daughter of the Father’s heart. It gives me great hope!

Have you read your God-sent dreams, read His promises? His messages?

A Crocodile Under the Bed is about a heads-up dream

The Bed-Time Chronicles: Empty Inside Feelings, click here

birdlbessings

974) The sheltering wing my husband offers in the midst of challenge
975) Early morning phone calls with my mom, filled with Florida to Tennessee weather comparison and her words of prayer and faith
976) The angel my mom said that appeared when she was having an asthma attack on the roadside, who showed her how to use her inhaler, who saved her life
977) hearts reaching for forgiveness
978) my son saying he doesn’t read my comments on his Facebook posts. The next day, I posted on his page, “Since you don’t read my comments, you won’t get the $20 gift card to your favorite restaurant” – 3 minutes later, my phone was ringing about the gift card. “You have a gift card for me,” he asked. “This was just a test. I see you do read my comments,” I said laughing. I laughed the rest of the day. I’m still smiling when I think of it.
979) lunch with a son (the same one who thought I had a gift card for him – LOL), who said that after a concussion his sophomore year of high school, he didn’t remember things from before, leaving me wanting to write a 31 day memory post for him, to remind him of how much he was loved, remind him of the sweet times – and give them as a gift to him
980) Driving with my permit driver. Instead of an anxiety attack, with hyper-ventilating – I gave him the words, “Well done, son! Well done!)
981) Toscana soup in the crock pot with green Swiss Chard
982) Friendship that grasps my hands, praying with me over piled-up challenges that over-whelmed
983) A table full of friends and spouses who are like family, gathered to support and encourage one of the group that will have surgery
984) Squirrels and their nests in tree tippy-tops – kind of like God winking at me, smiling and saying “Be brave, like that little fellow.”

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I held one child in my arms, year after year — he grew — and month after month, I grieved. 48 months, 48 “No’s.” Desolation snowballed into a downward spiral that drained me physically, emotionally, spiritually.

Secondary infertility was my diagnosis: the inability to conceive after the first child. Sarah, Rebekkah, Elizabeth, Rachael, Hannah, the barren woman — they became my soul sisters. I understood their cry — and I rejoiced in their answered prayers. I sat at their feet, looking for behavior solutions in their stories.

Sarah and Abraham encouraged accountability in their relationship — story after story of each enabling the other’s weakness drove that home. That the only time Isaac is shown taking his problems directly to God was when he asked God for Rebekkah to conceive shows the mighty power of a praying husband. Hannah unabashedly spilled her heart out in front of everyone, so passionate was she in emptying it for her God. Elizabeth, having grown reconciled to her barrenness, showed us how to rejoice in God’s surprises. Rachael cried out for a child to make her look good. Leah wanted to win her husband’s love by giving him sons — and found God’s mighty, fulfilling love. And, the barren woman’s house was filled, probably because she opened herself up to love more others than she could ever possibly conceive.

I mined these stories for clues to solve my problem. Because God had not given me what I asked for, I assumed it was a conditional behavior issue. God was waiting for me to behave a certain way before He would grant my request. I was like the mouse trying to find the magic button that releases the cheese — and none of the buttons I pushed released my cheese.

To compound that, I was an obsessive thinker, constantly searching for solutions. Obsessive thinking starts on the outside — can I work harder, eat healthier, study more, be skinnier, find a new theory, a new treatment — all the solutions are outside based. Outside solution failure turns the obsessive thinker inside — maybe I am not good enough, do not pray enough, believe enough, or am not important enough to God.

But God does not work like that. God does not love conditionally. I am not the mouse to his cheese. God wants a heart connection. Those bible stories? Meaningless without a God relationship. I knew what I thought I wanted, but without relationship with my Father, I could not know what He wanted for me. I had to take my mind off the plot and seek to know the author.

“Commit your way to the Lord, and trust in him, and he will do it.” (Psalm 25: 5, New Advent Bible)

A Christian friend, who was more intimate with God at that time, during a particular moment of emotional crisis advised me, “Ask Him to take the desire away if having another child is not His will.” I had to take everything off the table, so to speak — my dream, my desire.

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” (Luke 22:42)

And, I did — I asked my Father to take the desire away — if this dream was not His dream for my life. Like Abraham’s willingness to give up Isaac, I needed to be more committed to His plan for my life, than my plan, my desire, my dream. Though at that time I did not realize how much He loved me, who I really was to Him, I gave Him my heart’s desire.

And He gave it back — abundantly.

There have been big dreams and little dreams in my life — that I have asked God to help me fulfill. Sometimes my plan is not His plan — and I let go. Sometimes, His plan unfolds in His time, not my time — so there is a lot of waiting. Sometimes, I just need more experience so that I have what it takes to handle what I have asked for.

“The angel of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time 16 and said, “I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you.”(Genesis 22:15-17)

When a big dream bursts into a heart’s desire, instead of dashing off to grasp it — I whisper to my Father, “If it’s not what you want, please take away the desire to do it.”

And, He does.

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