Sunday, April 24, 2011

"Gospel & Enemy"

A dream I received on April 23rd, 2001

I was at the base of a ski mountain near the ski lodge. I had been skiing pretty well that day and I wanted to go onto more difficult slopes. I've only been skiing 4 or 5 times in real life, and I was not able to handle moguls but preferred simple downhills instead. But in the dream I noticed I was feeling pretty confident.

As I looked up in the direction of the other slopes, I saw something like a mountain ridge going off to the left. I didn't see a lift for it, either. It looked pretty difficult to get to. In fact, I couldn't even see the other slopes. So faced with that I stayed on the slope I was already at.

I looked for the lift and went over to the lift area, but I can't remember seeing the lift or being on it at all. The next thing I knew I was halfway up the mountain and it appeared to be somewhat dark outside. I was standing outside of a wooden cabin. I saw inside of it and it reminded me of a dusty old attic with a lot of cobwebs. Outside with me there was a middle-aged lady. She had dug out some white skis from under all the attic-like mess in the cabin.

They appeared to be old skis but they were good. At first I saw them on her, but the next thing I saw were the skis by themselves laying in the snow. I looked for the big ski boots or bindings on them because I wondered how they'd stay on a person's feet, but instead I saw something that looked like comfortable slippers on top of the skis, similar to what they'd give you to wear in a hospital.

In the next scene I was at the top of the slope and maneuvering to go down it. The downhill slope was on my left, and the rest of the mountain was going up on my right. In front of me there were some woods.

I remember a girl with dark hair and wearing a white backpack going past me in the direction I had just come from (she was going towards the woods with the little cabin where I had gotten the white skis). She seemed to be on skis, too, because of the smooth way she glided past me. She appeared very sad and depressed; she was crying and had her head in her hands. I watched her go by and then continued to my slope.

I went down the slope with the greatest skiing ease that I've ever known. Dodging, zipping around, sliding from side to side... it was fun and easy! As I went I noticed that I didn't have any poles for control, but seemed to be able to do all that stuff on the white skis alone. Realizing that momentarily worried me, or I thought maybe I should be worried, but I kept going safely and expertly as if on auto-pilot.

The skis took me down the slope and back to the lodge area, to an outdoor picnic area on a deck attached to the lodge. Around the picnic tables were several of my Adventist friends as well as many others I did not know.

Sitting at one of the tables in the midst of everyone there was a man who was hovering over something as if working on a blueprint for a plan. He had a dark look on his face: scheming, malicious, twisted, evil, hateful, plotting.

He was working on his blueprint for something like a building. He showed it to me somewhat proudly, telling me excitedly about what he was planning, confiding in me his secret plans to attack his enemies. He then showed me a calendar on the wall, and pointed to the day that his plan would happen.

Sometime around then, he made some remark about his plan and said the word "blood." My Adventist friends sitting down heard that word, and everyone started singing the popular Christian song, The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power.

The man sang along with everybody, but he left out certain words that sent chills up my spine. For example, when everyone sang the line, "the blood that gives me strength from day to day," the man sang along but left out the word 'that,' so what he actually sang was, "blood gives me strength from day to day."

It was sick and evil, and yet nobody seemed to notice! Disturbed and very alarmed, I went over to a small wooden shed (like an old outhouse) a few yards away from the lodge. It was like a closet inside. I looked in the top shelf and flipped through some thick booklets of early SDA church materials, mostly Ellen G. White. The booklets were old and yellowed with green writing. I kept flipping through the same booklets because I wasn't finding what I was looking for. I only saw booklets about health, temperance, and other mundane unrelated and useless things.

I was looking for something that would stop that man or wake up all of my friends and the other people who did not seem to notice him in their midst, filled with evil intent, plotting his attack against them. I was looking for some useful or helpful prophecy in these booklets, but could find nothing.

Finally I pulled something out of the shed and I went over to a picnic table off by itself, maybe 40 yards away from the lodge and closer to the base of the slope. There was a big leafy green tree nearby. I found myself looking down at an open book that looked like the vivid black letters of the books of the prophets in Scripture. It was a pretty bright day, and it seemed fresh and vivid at this point.

I woke up from the dream before my alarm went off.


The meaning of the dream...

The first part of the dream portrays my awakening to living in God. I began living in Him when I was sent as an Adventist missionary to Japan for a year (Aug/1999 to Aug/2000). As a missionary I had learned a lot, more than I ever had known with God in my whole life up until then (in the dream, I felt that I had "skied" well that day). So when I returned to my Adventist university back in America, I was ready to do some more "skiing" so to speak!

But as I looked up at my church, I saw it was a huge, giant mountain of an organization! At my university I started to enter the pastoral studies course, but the greatness of the bureaucracy daunted me. Maybe there were great 'ministries' in the system, but there seemed to be no way to get to them, and I just wanted to go back to down-to-earth ministry helping people (like I had done in Japan). So I didn't attempt to plunge into the system, but stayed where I was, looking for a place to "ski" (minister) again.

I looked for a way to help people through the ministries on my campus, but I didn't really find a way. But one day, just as suddenly as I found myself at the top of the slope in the dream, I suddenly found myself inside the Adventist system in a place where my voice mattered and it seemed I could actually help in some way: I had been invited to the Adventist Forum, and had been welcomed there by people hungry for passion. Right afterward, however, God led me to read an investigation of Ellen White that exposed many problems. This was a dark time for me, and my faith in Him was nearly destroyed. In the dream this is shown by it being dark and that I was near some woods—because in real life after I read the Ellen White report, it was night time and I literally wanted to walk off into the mountains and leave everything! I had believed she was wholly Biblical in her life and teaching, so if she was found to be false than the whole of the Bible and God would have to be false, too. But this darkness didn't last long, thankfully! In the dream I immediately came to a small cabin, and in real life it could not have been ten minutes after I despairingly wanted to leave my life altogether that God led me to read a prophetic book about Adventism by Hazel Holland.

The lady in the dream represents her. The dusty old cabin, filled with attic-like junk and cobwebs, represents the early events, teachings and prophecies of Adventism that I was heavily researching at the time. When I stumbled upon the investigative report about Ellen White, I had also stumbled onto Hazel's book because something she had written connected to the old Adventist things I had been researching. Right after my terrible moment "in the dark" when Ellen White fell (and "God" almost fell with her), I read the prophetic dream Hazel had written about. In it God showed me that He understood how I felt and that He had seen the things I had gone through being raised and educated in Adventism. I contacted Hazel and "tested" her as any good Adventist would. But in response she just spoke the gospel to me... simple, clear and true. It shone of His pure white righteousness, His lightness, power and freedom. And it cut through all the confusing cobwebs of Adventism.

The skis in the dream represent the gospel, which God had used Hazel to unearth for me from being buried underneath all the old doctrines of Adventism I had been researching. (In Ephesians 6:15 the gospel is compared by Paul to something you wear on your feet!) The founders of Adventism had known the gospel when they first became Christians, before they left to follow Miller and before they later formed the Adventist church out of their new doctrines. But in their excitement and pride they felt they were discovering more up-to-date things (which they called "present truth" or "new light"), and the gospel was considered something elementary, old, and not important enough to keep around for regular use. It was put in the attic, so to speak. (Not even all of the old things of Adventism are in regular use today by most Adventists, of course; well-meaning Adventists have tried to re-introduce "Christ" and "grace", however like the picnic tables on the deck later on in the dream, these rest on top of the Adventist foundation and can collapse when the Adventist foundation collapses). There was a lot of "junk" in there, but God used Hazel to bring out the gospel—the only thing worth redeeming!—from underneath all of the mess we had added on top of it.

At first I saw Hazel holding the gospel, but soon I saw the gospel alone. I and some of my Adventist friends from university began to meet and pray every Thursday night at Hazel’s home over the course of the next year or two. At first I was interested in the things of the Holy Spirit, His gifts, etc. But soon God began a work of healing in me, bringing me to forgive those who had hurt me, and calling me to repent for my own unforgiveness. The Holy Spirit exposed many wounds in my heart and guided me through applying the simple truth of the gospel to each memory, situation, thought and feeling. As He did this, everything in my heart was laid out on the table. My heart was "naked" before God and the few people in the group. I felt like I was in the hospital.

When you're staying in the hospital before and after surgery, there is nothing you can do. You just have to trust that the doctors know what they are doing with you and inside of you. In the same way, as God performed His healing on my heart at the Thursday night prayer meetings, I often felt just like I was in the hospital. There was little that "I" could do except to trust that He knew what He was doing, and wait on His timing. I felt open and vulnerable, but yet very refreshed. I was leaning on Him!

This is why the "bindings" on the skis in the dream looked like hospital slippers. The soft, slipper-like straps on the skis represent the total trust, exposure, vulnerability, openness, and healing that comes with the Gospel and that binds us to His truth. His truths are not meant to be merely academic, but to truly open us, lay bare our hearts, and even more wonderfully His truths are meant to be healing for our broken and wounded hearts! This is how He makes us "stand" in Him, by tearing us down to our foundations and rebuilding us on our ruins!

As I began standing on the gospel alone, I continued on where He led. For a time this was at my university, and He used me to minister to friends and others during that time before He sent me to live and work in Japan. But there soon came a time when I was at a turning point in my life: I could choose to stay in the Adventist church (on this "mountain"), or I could leave "the mountain."

About a month before leaving Adventism (which I had not planned to do and did not know was coming), I returned to my university to visit my friends. While there I briefly met a young student and God used me to help her out one day in a very simple, ordinary way. But the result of it was that she ended up going to Hazel's home, and this became the beginning of a deep healing time for her. I didn't know from looking at her, but she had been through a lot of pain in life, and she was still carrying it around.

In the dream she is represented by the dark-haired girl, who was being carried smoothly by the Spirit towards the place where I had met Hazel. In real life I couldn't see that she was sad and depressed, but God could see her tears. He showed them to me in the dream, as well as the terrible weight she was carrying around on her back. Her burdens were buried deep in her heart, which is why the backpack in the dream was white. From the outside it was hard to see what was burdening her, but the weight was crushing her and she needed freedom.

I had this dream more than a year before I met her, and after I met her I had no idea that she was the girl in the dream. When I first began to understand parts of the dream ten years ago, I had no idea what this dark-haired girl represented. I knew she was broken and that she needed God's love and healing. I knew God wanted me to pray for her, and I did. Only much later did I realize that God had put this young lady with dark hair in my dream a year before I met her, and that He had led her to the same house where He had healed me in order to heal her! I wasn't there to witness the amazing healing and restoration that God brought about in her life during her time there, but I praise God because of it! And I am in awe and wonder at His love and His ways!

It was about a month after meeting her that I left Adventism to "ride" on the gospel alone down the "course" He had laid out for me. I have been riding on Him down my course for ten years since I had this dream and nine years since I left Adventism! In the dream it was the greatest skiing I had ever done—dodging, zipping from side to side, and moguls were not a problem anymore! In real life these last nine years have been an incredible time. I can't say it's always felt as easy as the skiing in the dream was, but God's Spirit and truth have carried me and my family and He hasn't let us fall at all. Just as in the dream I had no ski poles for control, in real life I have had times where I thought I should be more worried about how He was carrying and guiding me, but He has been faithful the whole time. It hasn't been me that was doing this "skiing" in my life, but rather Him!

After a most incredible time skiing in the dream, I found myself back at the lodge area. God has brought me back to the area of Adventism, where many of my friends and loved ones continue on as before, not to mention countless others I don't know.

Among them is one they do not know, a spirit hidden from their sight. For a long time he has been setting up Adventists for a fall, planning his strategy and his blueprints for his attack against them. He knows the time is coming soon. In fact, the blueprint he was working on was not only the blueprint for attack: it was also the blueprint of the ski lodge itself! He had built it! And he had built it with weaknesses which he would later exploit. It had been designed to collapse in such a way that it would cause the greatest amount of pain and bitterness to those inside of it.

The twisted man represents the spirit that is the architect of the Adventist church. It laid the foundations on a "platform of truth" (the deck in the dream) that is not built on the solid rock, not built on Christ alone. But the foundation was laid with much religious fervor and many religious-sounding words. This is why in the dream what the twisted man said caused the people to begin singing! The words that this spirit spoke in the ears of the founders of Adventism still cause Adventists to "sing along" today, unaware of the intent of this religious-looking but terribly malicious spirit!

In the dream I was alarmed that such a sick man (this spirit) was among my friends, loved ones, and among all these other innocent people planning to attack them! I was alarmed that no one seemed to notice what was sitting in their very midst.

When I received this dream exactly ten years ago, the first things I understood were about the gospel of freedom (the skis) which God had used Hazel to introduce me to, and I understood about this twisted spirit being in the midst of my loved ones in Adventism, plotting their destruction. It took some time for the rest of the dream to be understood, and this has come in bits and pieces over the last ten years.

During this time since leaving Adventism, at times I have tried to share things with my friends and family about Adventist history, writings and doctrines, in the hope of guiding them to peace, safety, rest and freedom in Jesus alone. In the dream this is represented by how I went over to a wooden shed to try and find truths to help the people see both the gospel (the skis) and the enemy in their midst (the architect of Adventism). I did this in the hopes of finding something that would help them see this twisted spirit sitting at the table—this spirit who hates you and is planning your ruin. But trying to point out truths (information) about history, writings and doctrines has been useless.

And now, God has told me to leave those things behind, to not spend time trying to point out information about Adventism's foundation. He has called me instead to prophesy what He gives me to say to you. He has called me to come sit under His shade and in His light to prophesy and wait. I am not to go to the "ski lodge" to try and help people see, but rather I am called to wait for those who He will send.

If you are reading this now, please know that I love you and God loves you even more! Come sit with me here awhile under His shade and in His light! He has brought you and me to His banqueting (picnic!) table so that we may feast on Him in freedom and rest!

When I had this dream ten years ago, I woke up before my alarm went off. I believe that God is calling His beloved children in Adventism to wake up before it is too late! The clock is ticking and the time is approaching when the enemy will launch his attack. God will sovereignly allow the enemy to attack because it was not Him who built the house in the first place, and everything that can be shaken will be shaken.

Look to Him alone and rest in Him alone! (He's the best "skiing" you'll ever know—and without poles!)

1 comment:

  1. I was so blessed reading about your dream and what it means... Even though I've heard you share about it in detail before, somehow tonight my heart was strangely warmed as I read it again.

    Made me realize afresh God's amazing creativity in speaking to us in dreams and visions that are tailored made for our specific situations, and for those He intends to bless and bring to Himself!

    Wow! God is soooooooooooo awesome!