Have you ever wondered if the dreams and visions (dreams we have while awake) are somehow God speaking to us? The answer would be yes. God does actively speak to us through visions and dreams, and these can have significant meaning.
Often God will use our dreams and visions to challenge us about things in our hearts that we have left unattended. Other times He will release the ability for us to “see” the future and where and what God is leading us to.
A few years ago I had a vision -a waking dream, of myself running. When I was 11 years old I contracted a painful condition in my knees that prevented me from running or participating in any sports. I was in constant pain and had several operations, and numerous treatments and therapy throughout my teenage years to fix the problem, all to no avail. Then when I was 18 years old I had prayer for Jesus to heal me, and was instantly healed and pain free.
However I never went back to running. I got married, had six babies, and was always somehow too busy. About two and a half years ago I started to repeatedly have a vision of myself running. This went on for months, until I conceded God must be trying to speak to me. You see I’d shut down that sporty part of my life. God was speaking to me about running again, and so finally as a result of that vision I brought a pair of running shoes and started to run. At first it was only 30 seconds at a time, but I persevered. I experienced some setbacks and disappointments at my bodies lack of coopeation, but that vision kept me going.
I had received the vision from God in my spirit, it was translated to my soul (my mind and emotions), and then my body eventually came into line with what God had spoken. In the process my heart was healed, and the Lord restored what had been stolen from me as a child. I now look when I run, like the vision God gave me, and my family says I must be training for a half marathon, as I’m running over 10km at a time now. But it all started through God speaking in a vision.
We aren’t always open to hearing what God has to say to us, often because of our busy schedules or the state of our internal world. We can fail to take the time to listen or set aside time to hear God speaking. Or perhaps we don’t want to listen because what He has to say is difficult to hear. There are areas of our hearts that our minds don’t want to acknowledge, but God will reveal these things in visions and dreams.
Through visions and dreams He is able to get past our conscious self-defence mechanisms and go right to the heart of the matter, revealing the true condition of our hearts. This gives us opportunity to pay attention and listen to God, so that we can face these hidden areas in our life, and be healed and set free. He can also speak in a vision or dream to someone else, with a specific message for us.
All through the bible God used visions and dreams to bring direction, revelation and instruction. He still endeavours to instruct us through our visions and dreams, and uses them to imprint things upon our hearts and minds. The images we see may reveal a coherent message, or seem to make no sense. In my experience of interpreting dreams, there are often particular objects, people or places God uses to symbolise specific things. Initially it may make no sense, but if we wait and ask, God will usually bring revelation.
Both Joseph and Daniel had visions, dreams and interpreted theirs, and other people’s dreams. The dreams revealed peoples hearts and told of the future. God will even speak in a dream or vision to those who don’t profess to know or believe in Him so as to fulfil His purposes and/or to draw them to a revelation of His existence. (Genesis 37:5-9; 40; Genesis 41 Daniel 1:17)
It is however important to understand that we can all have what I call “pizza dreams”, like when we’ve eaten too late, and experience a disturbed sleep. We can have jumbled dreams from a busy, over anxious mind, which is our mind trying to sort out our previous day. It’s why its a good idea to spend some time before we sleep reading the bible and asking for forgiveness and healing for any mess up’s, or struggles we may have faced throughout the course of our day. We can also give any busyness and concerns of our day over to Jesus before going to sleep. Then when we dream or have a vision, we can be more confident that it is God revealing and speaking to us and not just “the pizza”.
If we think that God has communicated with us through a dream or vision, the Bible is the best place to confirm whether the message we have received truly came from God. If it doesn’t sound like how God speaks in His word, caution is always wise. It’s also worthwhile sharing what has been revealed to us with other Christians who know God and His Word well.
Biblically and historically visions and dreams have been a legitimate method God uses to impart visionary revelation, and it continues to be today. Ultimately Gods desire is to bring us closer to Him so that he can impart His plans and purposes for us, and our communities. He also wants to enable us to communicate with others with wisdom and revelation. Dreams and visions are designed to speak directly to our hearts about our lives, others we know, about our church, city, nation and the world.
Today, consider the dreams or visions you may have had. Write them down, pray and seek God over them and what they may mean. God never does anything without a purpose, and if we have had a dream or vision from God, you can be sure it is for a reason.
We can also ask God for the spirit of revelation, and wisdom that we might know Him better. Ask today, and expect God to speak, and for you to begin to see visions, and dream dreams.
“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.” (Ephesians 1:17)
“For God does speak—now one way, now another—though no one perceives it. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls on people as they slumber in their beds. Then He opens the ears of men, and seals their instruction”. (Job 33:14-16)
“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” (James 1:5)
Prayer: Lord thank you that you desire to speak to me, and draw me closer to you. Please remind me of any visions or dreams you have given, and help me to understand and grasp hold of what you were saying. Please release to me in greater measure visions and dreams from heaven. In Jesus name Amen.