December 25, 2012

Christmas is Here!

The gifts have all been unwrapped, and the breakfast eaten and enjoyed. It has been a good day to spend with those we love. I was tired, so I took an hour-and-half nap, and I am now up and thinking  about dinner (yum!) The funny thing is that I laid down with the words of the Lord in my head -- "I want you to be prepared" and "Go!" I slept fitfully, almost a pushing and pulling of trying to sleep versus trying to wake up. It was not so restful, but I did sleep some, and I did dream some.

I have had two dreams, and really if you count the weird vision-like thing that I had last night while meditating during the candle lighting/singing of "Silent Night" I guess it has been three dreams.

Last night, at the end of our traditional Christmas Eve service, I closed my eyes, and had two mini dreams. Weird little snippets of dream that came up from inside my mind. These were pictures of something I had dreamed at least a dozen or so years ago. I remember the detail, I guess, because as soon as the images came up, I knew them, and I remember that I had once dreamed about them. Is that deja-vu, when you experience the same dream more than once? I don't know. I just remember those images, and I was pricked a little in my mind when they came back to me. I didn't really have time to ask the Lord about them since I came back round during the last verse of the song, and it was time to blow out the candles and say "Merry Christmas" to everyone as we left the church.

I dreamed about two things, two places that had absolutely no meaning to me -- not remembrances of my past, or places I had lived, or even places I specifically had visited. No, these were two places that I have never been too, nor ever seen in a dream or on TV or in a movie. These were mystical, magical places where I lived with my son (I remember that part), and where I longed to live with him. In both places there was snow, white snow, and lots of it. Both were in the country, though one was in the mountains (there were lots of big trees). One was near a house, and one was in a house.

I remember the first scene -- I could see the roads and hillsides covered in snow. I could see the little houses with their bright Christmas lights. I could see us moving down the road, driving towards a stop light. I remember thinking that we lived in this place, and that the place seemed so familiar to me. Part of me was thinking that it reminded me of Wadsworth, Ohio (where my cousins lived when I was child) or that it looked similar to Hazel Crest, IL (where I lived as a child). It was neither place, it just had that small town America look and feel to it. It was comforting to me to think I lived in this place.

As we turned at the light, we drove to a small house. This house I had seen in my dreams many times before. It was a green house, single level, on the left or south side of the street. It was a lane really, the kind where there were houses on either side, but set back from the street some with large expansive lawns. We didn't go in the house, we just drove up to it. I thought "we are home" and it was a nice feeling. I haven't felt at home in a long time, a very long time. I have lived in a lot of houses, but only a few have been home to me. This one was home.

In a moment, I found myself inside, but not inside this house. I was inside another house. This house was in the mountains, high up in the mountains. There was snow outside as well, and it was warm inside. This house had several floors, and my son was upstairs at the very top of the house. I remember climbing the stairs to go and see his room. He was littler than now -- he is almost 6 feet tall. He was perhaps 10-12 at the time. He was playing in his room, and I thought this was normal. I continued to walk up to my room, and I went inside. It was bright and light. It felt warm. I thought that I was happy here. I was home, my son was in his room playing, and I was very safe. I looked out the window to see the snow on the ground. I saw other houses across the way, and they were covered in snow as well.

Then today, as I lay down to rest for a moment, my mind drifted off to another place. This time, I did go home to San Jose. I have always felt that San Jose was home -- this was were I grew up from age 16 onward, and I have many warm and sweet memories here. My parents lived there until they retired and came to Phoenix (in 2000), but for all intents and purposes - San Jose was home to me.

I saw myself driving down Santa Teresa Blvd. towards the Community Lutheran Church, where I rededicated my life to following Jesus. My family attended this church for just three years, but during that time, I gave my life to the Lord, and I received my calling to follow after Him. I saw the church on the corner, and instead of turning towards it, I turned down the opposite way and drove into a neighborhood that I knew. I had friends who lived up this way, and I remembered seeing the homes there. I thought, "Lord, I know this place. I know this street." I kept driving, and then woke up, finding myself on the sofa and wondering why I would visit these places in my mind during this Christmas season.

I told my mother this morning that I have been dreaming again. I normally dream, but the past several m months have been dreamless for me. This is very odd, but I thought it was because I have been so tired from my job change, and the additional stress at work. I started dreaming a couple days ago -- nothing I really recall, just dreams like I dream normally.

My dreams tend to fall into different kinds - and as I have blogged before -- would make good fodder for anyone who specializes in dream theory. I dream escape dreams designed to help me overcome fears (tornados mostly). I dream home dreams that comfort me and remind me of how I long for a home where I am safe and secure. I dream nostalgic dreams where I desire to live or visit and where I find myself longing to go. And I dream prophetic dreams where I see myself in the future doing something the Lord has called me to do.

These dreams, the most recent ones are all "home" dreams. In each case, I was home. I felt at home. I knew I was home. I have come to learn that my "home" dreams do not equate to actually finding "the home" in the dream or moving to a new place to live. The importance of the "home" dream is to remind me that my home is where I feel connected, and where I feel most comfortable. It is not about the location, though normally it is a located reminiscent of my childhood (in woods or small town).

I remember saying to the Lord that I want to go home. I have probably said that a dozen times during the past six-seven months. I would utter it without thinking, just letting the words come out with some exasperation, "Lord, I want to go home. Can I please go home now?" Sometimes people say that meaning they want to die (the Christian way of suicide). In my case, I really meant that I wanted to physically "go home" to the place where feel safe and secure, where I will be "home" again (like when I was a child). I want to be safe again. I want to be secure, and I want to live where I will have no worries or fears.

It is not that I am not safe in my current house. Oh no, not at all. I am very safe here. I feel totally safe. It is that in my mind I am not home. I am just in a temporary home, and my real home is not here. I want to go to that real home, where I can rest, and where I can be at peace. I want to be home again. And, I want to stay home -- to never leave that home, and to remain in that home so that I never have to worry about moving again. I want to stay put. I want to be home.

The truth is that I long for a home of my own where I can live and no longer worry about having to move or relocate. I want to be that child again, safe with my parents, and where I can rest. The worries and stress of this life is getting to me. I am alone now, no longer married, no longer sharing my life with someone who would take care of me. I left my parents care for the care of a husband. My married life was not a safe and secure place. It was difficult and uncertain. I left my married life for a place of my own, so that I could be in control of the money, the finances, the security. I have found that I am not secure in my own handling of my affairs. I still worry about money. I still fret over choices regarding careers and jobs and incomes. I listen to the world, and I think "I need benefits to be secure" or "I need to make this much each month just to live comfortably." I listen to that voice inside my head saying "Trust Me. I have you covered. You are safe," and I don't always believe it. I don't always see that I am covered and that I am safe. I want to believe that voice. I want to listen and heed and know that I am safe -- but there is so much uncertainty in the world, so much unknown.

As I dream, I go to a place where I remember feeling safe. I remember thinking I am home now, and everything will be OK. It is weird to put it this way, but it does make sense to me. I long for a home where I can live with my son (not as a young man in 2012-2013), but as a little boy. I long for a do-over where I can make a safe home for us, where I can control the outcome of his life, and where I can feel that I am making his life better.

I know that those days are long-passed, and that I cannot go backwards in time (even if my son is a big Dr. Who fan -- time travel today is not possible). I want a do-over on this life. I want to start over again, and make good choices, and follow after the Lord the first time, not the second, the third or the fortieth time (like in real life). I want to take His Road, and see all He has to give me, knowing that it will be Good. I want to be in His care from the get-go, and not trust people who let you down. I want to be that little girl who looks to her Daddy for everything, and who with child-like innocence believes that He can do anything and everything.

I believe that my Daddy in Heaven can do anything. I look to Him and I know He is God. I know that I am safe in His care, and that He is moving me towards the road of His choosing. There is no other way for me now, and these dreams are telling me that the home I long for is not in Illinois, in Wadsworth or in San Jose. No, my home is with Him, and it is the only place where I will feel safe, secure, and finally find rest.

I am going Home today. I am going to be with my Lord, and to find my place of rest in His loving care. I know He has been waiting for me to come back Home for a very long time. He has waited patiently while I tested all the other paths, tried all the other vocations, and thought all those dreams. He has been there for me, Graciously providing, Tenderly loving, and Gently guiding me. I have been stubborn. I have been willful. I have wanted to do it my way.

Now, though, I am tired of my way. I am ready to do it His way. I am ready to rest, to let go of the past, to not care about the present nor think about the future. I am ready to be with Him, just as He is with me. I am ready to be in this moment, to be where He needs me to be, and to be by His side following after Him as He goes to the places He chooses to go. I am ready to be Home, to finally come into my Home, and to know I am at rest.

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