God’s Tools and Lenses
Previously (Part One), we discussed how God used “optometry” (through dreams, encounters, expectations and Scripture) to adjust my spiritual “hearing.” And in the process, my focus shifted to depend on the Messenger (Jesus), to teach me how to recognize Him and discern His Messages in my dreams.
This post explores some common types of spiritual dreams which are tools to help us to see further, deeper, and also enable us to discern former and latter things (the past and the future). Before closing will be a brief discussion on what to do when we cannot see clearly or do not understand.
Telescopes and Binoculars
Have you ever seen yourself at an older age doing something you are not presently doing? Telescope-like dreams are prophetic and span decades. When these dreams present as visions (through framed or unframed windows, doors, portals or lenses) we can be assured God is giving us a view from His perspective. He makes Himself known in visions (Numbers 12:6).
As an example, Daniel’s seer gift was long-range and governmental. Through dreams and encounters, he saw empires to come hundreds of years in his future. He also understood the irrevocable nature of decrees pronounced by watchers (angels), who speak on behalf of God. Another fine example of telescopic vision is when Abraham saw his future Seed and Jesus’ Day (John 8:56).
Most of us are curious about our future and we often give little consideration to the trials and tests that usually precede the manifestation of a promise. Though he was anointed to reign over Israel, David lived as a fugitive before he sat on the throne. While in the case of Joseph, years spent as a slave and prisoner prepared him to govern with humility. By and large, the greater the vision (or the more grandiose a prophecy), the greater the test.
Binoculars are not as powerful as telescopes; therefore, these dreams may show the near future, perhaps two months, two quarters or even two years? (The prefix “bi” means “two”).
Hand-held Magnifying Glasses and Microscopes
Knowingly or unknowingly, we all suffer from selective seeing or hearing to some degree; consequently, certain spiritual dreams from God are magnifiers to show us what we may have overlooked or prefer not to see. Magnifiers examine our choices, fears, personal biases with such transparency that they can really touch a nerve!
Nevertheless, when these kinds of dreams come from God, He also gives us solutions. For example, bathroom scenes invite us to repent of issues that hurt us spiritually, books may remind us to spend more time in the Word, or a right turn may signify a change of direction is necessary.
How should we respond? That really is an individual decision. As a rule, un-acknowledged issues trigger recurring dreams to gain our attention; the same way that an elephant in a room is hard to ignore (Job 33:14-30). In my own experience: I pray, repent, and magnify the things of God, His redemption, and His protection. After all, a problem should never look bigger than the Solution (the Lord).
Perhaps Psalms 40:16 says it best, “Let all those who seek You rejoice and… say continually, ‘The Lord be magnified!’”
Obviously, microscopes are far more powerful than magnifiers.
Microscope-like dreams show things we absolutely cannot see – such as DNA and bloodline issues – to bring us inner healing or deliverance from curses. The solutions are usually embedded in the dream. Look carefully!
Hourglasses, Clocks and Seeds
Time can be extremely difficult to discern in dreams and prophecy (which is why so many prophets get it wrong). For me, hindsight is 20-20! God wisely obscures the future for our protection from ourselves (our interference can create barriers), as well as from unseen enemies who intentionally hinder our success.
Clocks, watches and hour glasses are all symbolic of time. An hourglass can mean some event may occur within “an hour” or alert the dreamer that time is “running out.” A watch may be word play meaning to “keep watching.” And there are numerous other ways to discern timing.
Sometimes dreams show seasons (winter, fall, springtime, Christmastime) or even seeds. If we know a seed’s germination period, then the duration of its dormancy may reveal how long a “promise” could remain buried (hidden or dead) before it is fulfilled (or resurrected).
For years I dreamed about rice not realizing that this seed requires an excessive amount of water (the Word and Spirit) to grow! One other thing, rice can be stored (dormant) long-term for 20 or 30 years!
In comparison, a mustard seed in Scripture speaks of faith and reminds us to not despise small beginnings (Matthew 13:31-32).
Time can also be discerned from distance or numbers. For example, twelve (12) inches could symbolize 12 months, and 5 feet could represent 5 years. In one of my prophetic dreams, a 6- and 1/2-hour drive turned out to be exactly 6 1/2 years in real life! Many will recall that Joseph, son of Jacob in the Bible, was especially gifted by God to accurately discern time from numbers. Seven cows coming out from the Nile River that flooded annually, represented seven years. (Read the dreams of Pharaoh, the cupbearer and the baker).
Rearview Mirrors, Back Doors, and Compasses
Sometimes, we need to look to the past to understand how we arrived at where we are today. Rearview mirrors, back doors and rear windows symbolically serve that purpose. Reasonably, one benefit gained from history may be for lessons-learned, but we should not park there.
When we cannot see or do not understand
We all experience frustrating seasons when our way is not clear, we lack confidence in our decisions, or we lack revelation or understanding. So, what should we do when we cannot see or understand what God is showing us?
Isaiah 50:10b says: Who walks in darkness and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord and rely upon his God.
Perhaps, these are times to pause, place our trust in God’s loving care, and remember that His Name (His Nature) is to be our ever-present-help.
Verse 11 of the same chapter in Isaiah warns us (in parabolic language) of what we ought not do. We should not walk in our own “light” or try to kindle our own understanding because the outcome will likely cause us distress (a lack of peace).
Personally, I ponder God’s faithfulness. I refocus on the Messenger, the Word and re-read my last few dreams to ensure I completed all instructions. Wherever possible, I also delay huge decisions until Peace and clarity return.
Unquestionably, the enemy and our flesh push, but the Spirit leads us in Peace, and to be “led” by the Holy Spirit means to not assume control, but to… expect the unexpected.
Finally, God may use Scripture, dreams, light, or whatever methods He chooses to help us to see with understanding and to hear Him more clearly. Regardless, our role remains unchanged: Focus on Him (see Part One) and yield to His work in us. Amen!
(… and thank you for visiting my blog!)