I need to tell you about these dreams.
They began before I came to India, before I came to this place that everyone warned me about – warned me to be afraid of for its violence and vivid spiritual attacks.
In the first dream, I was staying at a hotel. I befriended a girl there – a woman who was in her early thirties. She seemed afraid, and I befriended her because I wanted her to know how Love can cast out fear. She seemed helpless and i wanted to help. In befriending her, though, I was caught in the very thing she was afraid of. I had been abducted into the group her boyfriend had been abducted in to – a group whose leader forced his captives to murder. The first we were required to murder were two women who had been dating captives and therefore knew to much. We would murder them when they came to the big room for breakfast. The boyfriends were too afraid of being murdered themselves to do anything. I came up with an excuse to be missing for a few minutes, slipped over the stairs, and warned the woman just as she was coming, “Leave. They want to kill you. Don’t stop for anything. Warn the other girl.” I was afraid she wouldn’t believe me, but she did. And, with a frightened but thankful look, she was gone. I never saw her again.
When I returned to the captives, I found out we weren’t just waiting for the women, we were waiting for a great group of people who thought they were coming for a brunch. They entered, and we knew what we were supposed to do. I knew I could not do it. I ran at people with my machine gun, loudly, giving them every opportunity away, while still looking like I was chasing them with energy. I chased away those who could run, but then…. there was a baby. She lay there, bundled in soft white, totally helpless. I scooped her up and found a place to hide her till I could further her escape.
I looked up to see a older woman captive watching me. When I walked over to the other captives (This round of murder was now over), she pulled me aside. She looked up at me with frightened eyes, the wrinkles on her pale white face pulled taught and sharp. “I saw what you did,” she said.
“What are you talking about,” I played dumb.
She looked me in the eye. “I saw what you did.”
Another captive came over. He towered above me. Now he looked me in the eye.
“We’ve all wanted to save people, but only you did.” He said. His eyes seemed to say thank you.
Then the leader came – the captor.
“Come with me,” he said.
We all knew what would happen to me.
I followed him down the stairs to his car, into his car, and across town. We parked in a huge parking lot with hundreds of cars. He pulled out a gun. I closed my eyes and began to pray aloud, “Father, forgive this man for what he is about to do. Bring him to salvation. Let him know that only acceptance of Jesus’ death on the cross can free him from his sins and save him. Let him come to know You, God.”
I opened my eyes.
My captor was dead next to me, his handgun in his mouth.
I was in a parking lot again. It was almost a month since my last dream, and now I was in India. But I didn’t know I was dreaming.
I had been helping someone. The details are vague in retrospect. What I remember clearly was the man with the gun, a row across from me in a mostly deserted parking lot in a bad part of town. He was shooting at me. I smiled at him and said, “You can shoot me. That just means I would get to see the God I love sooner.”
I walked up to him, closer and closer, and began to tell him about the God I loved – who He was, what He was like, how and why He sent His son to die for the man with the gun. Soon, the man and I were standing close to each other. And the man followed me. He sat down on a cement step in the alley and listened as I continued. He kept shooting now and then – random shoots intended to keep me afraid, but not to hurt me. He listened intently.
When I woke up, I told Katie, and she told me what mom had told me a month earlier about my first dream. “You should pay attention. That doesn’t sound like just a dream.”
A few days later a dear, godly woman of prayer gave me a verse she said she believed God wanted me to have. It was psalm 41:1-3. It said that the man who helps the helpless would be restored from sickness and his life would be preserved. These verses both gave me a promise for my sickness, and explained the two dreams to me. Little did I know, they were preparing me for the third.
Again, a parking lot. This time it was a building – a parking lot with many levels. I had spiritually encouraged some women, I had acted lovingly to some people who had hurt me deeply, I had been falsely accused. Now I was walking through this parking lot with my parents. My mom walked beside me; my dad walked ahead. He was in a dark, long sleeve sweater and dark pants. He extended his arms and swayed with them back and forth. This seemed strange. What seemed stranger, though, was the feeling in the room. It was darker than the lack of light. It was suffocating thick and tense.
Then my dad was behind us, still swaying back and forth. Ahead of us, from begin a cement pillar, a man spun out into view. He was dressed like my dad, and he imitated his gait and sway but his eyes burned like fire. I knew, instinctively, absolutely, that he was not a man.
But as he walked before and my dad behind, I suddenly couldn’t tell the difference. I didn’t know who to run to and who to run from.
But we ran, and he grabbed me by ankles. I kicked and pulled. His hands grasped tighter. He was a demon in the form of a man. I kicked and I screamed. He squeezed tighter. I realized this was a dream. I tried to wake up. I couldn’t. He held my ankles tighter. I screened to wake myself up, but I didn’t wake up. I flailed to wake myself up, but I couldn’t wake up. That frantic feeling crawled up into my lungs. I said to myself, if this is a dream, maybe I can fly away. But I could not fly. I said, if this is a dream, I can treat it like a day and do something fantastical. I tried I freeze him with a freeze ray. Nothing mattered. I could not treat this like a dream. The demon’s eyes were burning and nothing I could do could keep his eyes from burning at me. His clutch only grew tighter.
It all made sense. I prayed:
“Father God, save me. You’re the only One Who can.”
I woke up. Light through curtains. Spinning fan. The grip loosened – slithered off – slipped away like a mist.
As I write this, a recording begins to play from my iPod shuffle – a verse I forgot I had recorded: Psalm 121.
“… from where shall my help come? My help comes from The Lord Who made heaven and earth. He shall not allow your foot to slip, He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold (Look! Pay attention!) He Who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper. The Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun will not smite you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will protect you from all evil. He will keep your soul. The Lord will guard your going out and your common in from this time forth and forever.”
And the meaning of those verses from Psalm 41 is deeper and more real:
“How blessed is he who considers the helpless;
The Lord will deliver him in a day of trouble.
The Lord will protect him and keep him alive,
And he shall be called blessed upon the earth;
And do not give him over to the desire of his enemies….”
Our Faithful God will fulfill His promises. To Him be the glory and the power forever. Amen.