I had a dream a few weeks ago that I haven’t been able to shake out of my head.
Now I’ve always known that God speaks to me through my dreams and from a young age I really got into writing my dreams down because even though some may not have held significance I realised that as soon as I read an old dream I’ve had – I remember everything instantly. Another thing also is that when I dream God dreams they normally play out like a full-on feature-length film.
So for this particular dream. Let me set the scene for you.
I was on the run. But not like a messy bun, running shoes, head to the beach and run a mile run. Like genuinely my life is on the line run. I was running with an ex-boyfriend of mine and we must’ve done something real bad. Like some Bonnie and Clyde, we may have just killed someone real bad. In one scene we were in a huge run-down mansion that looked like it had been burnt down to a crisp but the infrastructure was still all there. We’d arrived there after we had been running for days and for a moment we were able to catch our breath and find solace in these crumbled down walls. But I could never shake the feeling of being on the run off of my shoulders and boy did it hang low. It was almost like I was running with invisible chains that stopped me from breathing in real freedom. See I was running free but running guilty. It was a false freedom where my doom always waited at the end of it all within the walls of a prison. Our time in the mansion was short-lived. Police sirens and flashing lights lit up the outside window and we knew we had to run again.
So we pelted it, we pelted it down the hill and ran with full force across the grounds hiding from the helicopter that loomed above us.
I had no hope.
I knew my outcome and I was just trying to prolong it. I didn’t want to get caught yet I didn’t want to own up to my wrongdoing.
Different scenes passed by, we were at a dockyard about to board a boat – we were in a constant state of darkness, literally and spiritually. We were blinded and branded criminal with nothing but our worn-out shoes and tired eyes to show for it. These scenes were colourless. Nothing but the light of our consequences from the helicopter to act as a constant reminder of our criminal status.
In other scenes, we weaved in and out of people walking casually in the street. We had no idea what it was like to walk casually in the street, we had been running for so long and there was no escape.
In the end, I woke up. I woke up breathing hard and fast and I didn’t know what to do with myself. At first, I thought the dream had spilt into real life but it hadn’t and as soon as I came to that realisation I breathed in a huge sigh of relief.
The following Sunday at the 9 am prayer meeting there was a moment where we were asked if God had put anything on our hearts and instantly images from my dream flooded my mind.
Yes but why, Lord?
I had no idea why, but He did.
He told me that people, people that don’t know Him blindly go about life in this constant state and have no idea what it’s like to live in His freedom. People who claim to know Him walk about like this too. In a constant state of “I’m a criminal or I’m unworthy” with no hope for the future even though they know the very hope of our future.
The truth is I think we honestly wouldn’t know freedom if it slapped us in the face. I think, at times we can be reminded of freedom but to live in a constant state of being free is hard because we condemn ourselves, we are sometimes too hard on ourselves and are not so quick to proclaim the Lord as our Saviour and only hope in a lost and dying world. We judge ourselves and we judge one another and we try to become God and we put ourselves on the throne rather than Jesus. And to be honest, I’ve been, in more ways than one, in that state of guilt and condemnation for way too long. Sometimes it hard to gaze upon the hope and freedom that we all are available to have.
Before I wrote this post I googled “freedom” and I think it was so interesting the way the first definition was “the power to act, speak or think as one wants.” An absurd thought in this day and age where if you say anything contrary to what culture is feeling at the time then you’re close-minded and a bigot. Where the truth is if you promote the very freedom you’re allowing yourself to live in, surely you can hear other people’s views out as well? The second definition was “the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved”. We don’t know true freedom until we taste freedom itself which comes from the Lord. I think what’s interesting about these two things is that if we were to truly do whatever WE want we would probably be in that state of imprisonment. There are laws to uphold and we’re expected to follow those laws as law-abiding citizens. With God, the only requirement is that we love Him and follow Him and His Holy Spirit is what He gives us to recalibrate our lives and mould us to look and be more like Him.
If you’re in a state where you feel like you may be a walking criminal, condemnation is not your portion and there’s a sweet taste of freedom in the arms of Jesus if you wish to take it!