(Originally posted 18th March 2020)
Some time last year, I had a dream I went to university while I was broke. I lived in a shared accommodation where people came and went as they pleased and there was no contract. My belief is that the landlord represents God; the university represents life, and the people in this accommodation were the body of Christ. The landlord provided the ingredients needed to cook meals, and they put a roof over our head. But, just like God, he never forced us to stay. The people in this accommodation provided for each other whenever anyone was in need. They gave me plenty of support, both material and emotional.
Later in the dream I was in a very low mood. Someone described it as a hanging cloud, but I corrected them and described it as a storm. She sang, praising God as boldly as she could, and I felt uplifted and that darkness passed.
Interpretation of the Dream
I believe the dream serves to remind us of three things:
- God Provides, just as the landlord provided for the people in the accommodation
- God wants us to show our love for Him by showing love to one another and giving to each other, just as the students in my dream gave to me
- Worship breaks demonic forces and uplifts us, just as it did in my dream when I was low
God providing for us may seem like Christianity 101, but I believe it’s an amazing fact that so many of us forget time and time again, even me. We have doubts. We worry. Some of us are living pay cheque to pay cheque, some are on government benefits, and still others work themselves to the bone and scoff at the idea that an all-powerful deity like God could ever exist or help us. But God’s provisions means so much more than just the financial side of things. God also provides for us emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
God is NOT a Genie in a Lamp
Philippians 4:19 says, ‘And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.’ This passage is amazing! God didn’t say he would provide only our financial needs, he said all our needs — material, emotional and spiritual. But remember, he didn’t say he would take care of our wants. You may want a flashy Ferrari for your birthday, but do you need it?
He is not a genie in a lamp. God provides according to His will, and in His own time. Yes, the Bible says God will give us the desires of our heart (Psalm 34:4) but that is only half of the verse. Ryan Higginbottom at Knowable Word puts context to this verse in this article. He concludes the article by saying, ‘If we delight in him, he will change our desires so that they glorify him, and he will satisfy those desires. He will even give us himself.’
Matthew 6:25-34 is a brilliant passage about how we shouldn’t worry because God will be there to give us all that we need. I will highlight verse 26, which says, ‘Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?’ Verse 33 is another golden nugget that is often quoted: ‘But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.’
We Should Provide For Others
A wonderful woman at my church ministered to us a couple of weeks ago about the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats in Matthew 25:31-46. You should definitely read it. In this parable, Jesus uses the example of a shepherd who separates his sheep from his goats in order to help his followers understand what judgement will be like. The sheep represent the followers of Christ who gave to those in need, and who will inherit a place in heaven. The goats represent the ones who denied those in need, and the parable explains that they will go to hell.
Verse 40 says, ‘The King will reply, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”’ It’s important to understand that God provides for us, but it’s equally important to show others the same love that God shows us and to give to those in need. Giving can look different depending on the need of the person in need. People often think of monetary giving, but one of the most wonderful things you can give a person is time. This can mean working at a soup kitchen, befriending an elderly person, or volunteering for a charity.
Worship Him Even Through Trials
The final part of my dream was about how praising and worshipping God can lift our spirits and break demonic forces. Exodus 23:25 says, ‘Worship the Lord your God, and his blessing will be on your food and water. I will take away sickness from among you.’ Occasionally at church we’ve been in deep worship and prayer and I’ll start laughing hysterically. I feel God’s love and joy pour over me and it lifts my spirit up. He can do the same for you. All you have to do is seek Him and ask Him to give you the joy you desire.
Remember, Matthew 7:8 says, ‘For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.’