This was originally written 4-13-10
I had a dream last night that my mother died. I’m not sure the situation of where I was, or how it came about, but I was somewhere that seemed like a place of work, but it was definitely not my current job. I got a phone call telling me that she was dead. The person who called to tell me was someone I was evidently familiar with, for when he told me, I didn’t believe him and I called him a liar. He kind of laughed a little, so I assumed it was a joke. But he still said that he wasn’t kidding.
There were people around me, and evidently they either could hear the conversation or were in on the joke, if it was one, for some of them looked at me with concern while others were openly laughing. Some of them started saying different things, but I tuned them out, focusing on the possibility that she had actually died.
I guess at that point my dream fast forwarded and I come to a place to confirm that she was dead. She was in fact dead. I remember in my dream I felt this overwhelming dread and disappointment sweep over me. I grieved heavily for the loss. It felt like my world was caving in because of it. That one emotion, that loss, completely consumed any other feeling, emotion or thought. It was like nothing I’ve ever experienced before. I’ve suffered the loss of my father, whom I truly love and do greatly miss, and I didn’t grieve as heavily over him as I did in this dream over my mother.
When I woke up, I just sat there, thinking, which is standard practice when I have dreams like that. I don’t always have dreams that I remember in the morning. And not all the dreams that I do remember do I automatically think have some underline significance, but this one I believe does. So I started analyzing it. I wondered why I had the reaction in my dream that I did, because, honestly, I don’t have that close of a relationship with my mother. We do not see eye to eye and she often knows the buttons to push to set me off and constantly pushes them. So, my calls to her are few and far between.
Does that mean I don’t love my mom? By no means—I love her greatly. She doesn’t believe me, because she thinks that I would call and visit her more if I did. Love, to me, is not limited to simple works that are discernible and measurable. By that I mean there is no measuring stick by which you can determine someone’s love for someone else. And it is most certainly not limited to mere proximity.
Still, I was taken a little aback by my reaction in my dream. Some might say that I simply didn’t grieve correctly for my father. I can see where people might think that. I remember the night before he died. I was in the hospital there with him and several other people. Up to that point, I fully expected God to heal him. I had unwavering faith and never even entertained the thought that he would actually die. That night I came to the realization that he was indeed going home, just not with us. That hit me hard and I balled my eyes out right there next to his bed.
Then I heard a prayer starting with these words; “Lord, we come to you with a selfish prayer…” I understood how selfish I was being. Here he is, cancer eating away at the majority of his vital organs, in constant pain, and I’m wanting him to hold on because I wanted him here. So I got up and walked out of the hospital and never looked back. I still miss him from time to time, and I am reminded of him often. I loved him greatly. I still do. He was probably the greatest male influence in my life (besides Jesus), even though he was only really in my life for a handful of years.
As I laid in my bed, thinking of the significance of this dream, I got the urge to pray for my mother. I mean, after all, the dream could have been a warning. So I prayed, out loud, in my bed, for my mother. Then I thought about calling her just to tell her how much I love her. There was a sense of immediacy about my desire to call her, because this could be an issue of life and death. If my mom were to died in the next few moments, I don’t want her to die wondering if her only son loved her.
This immediacy reminds me of the morning I received Christ as my Savior. The night before I had gone to a Wednesday night youth service at a church my friend invited me to. I got confronted with questions that caused me to think about things I didn’t want to think about. That night, it proved difficult to go to sleep. When I finally did, I had a dream where I went to hell and stood face to face with Satan who said to me, “Welcome to eternity.” When I woke up, there was immediacy in me to do something about it. I feared that dream more than anything in the world.
When I woke up, I remember being so happy that my dream wasn’t a reality and that I still had the opportunity to do things differently. I was convicted of my sin and realized the need for a savior. With immediacy, I sought out someone to help me. I was so scared that I was physically shaking. As Sylvia, my step-mom, lead me in a prayer accepting Christ as my savior, a great calm and peace came over me. Before that prayer, though, nothing else mattered. My primary objective in life was to not let my dream become reality.
So what did I do? I just sat there. Because it’s 6am Central Time, which is 4am Pacific Time, where she lives. I did what I do best—rationalize it away. “What would I do if I received a call at four in the morning by someone just so they could tell me they loved me?” Honestly, my response would probably be, “You couldn’t wait until the morning to tell me that? You woke me up for that?”
The thing that God showed me is that we need to do less thinking and more doing. We need to stop rationalizing and just act. God called us to love—recklessly, passionately, deeply, and greatly. Often, I think we let our intellect get in the way of love. Maybe it’s just me.
I don’t know what God has planned. I have no idea what God is up to two thousand miles away. Why couldn’t I just pick up the phone and call her? I don’t know what she’s dealing with right now. I mean, what if it can’t wait until the morning? What if she feels unloved and decided she wanted to take her life? I don’t know what’s going on. Perhaps God influenced my dreams to have me call her when I got up. But I let my rationale keep me from being an inconvenience.
BUT GOD IS NOT IN THE CONVENIENCE BUSINESS!!!
Jesus did not apologize for His life being an inconvenience to others. How often do we apologized to Him for the inconvenience that our dirty, sinful lives had on Him? I mean, I’m pretty sure dying on the cross for my sins was pretty much an inconvenience.
Why do we not live each day like it’s our last? Why do we not live our lives as if it could be the last for those in our lives that have never experienced the amazing love of God? Why do we not live our lives with immediacy? Why is my primary objective in life not to do everything in my power to help prevent others from experiencing what I dreamt about the night before I gave my life to Christ?
Because there is always tomorrow.