This article was originally published in Edition (16) of Prayer Magazine, Jan 2009.

Basics of dreams and what they mean.

Have you ever had a dream and woken up curious, intrigued or even disturbed by it? The average person sleeps approximately eight hours a day. Over a sixty year period that would amount to 20 years worth of dreams! Today dreams are attributed to ‘last nights pizza’ and often just ignored. Does God still speak today in dreams? Could dreams contain a hidden message?

Thousands have been influence by dreams -  from scientists, politicians, inventors, Presidents of nations to multitudes of ordinary individuals.

Albert Einstein attributed his theory of relativity to a dream he had. Niel Bohr received a Noble prize for his quantum theory, which he claimed came from a dream. Elias Howe had a dream that gave him an idea to invent the sewing machine.

Most dreams have a message, few are from an over active mind as often supposed.

Understanding our personal dreams can have phenomenal results. Most dreams deal with issues in the dreamer’s life and are basically given to change the life of the dreamer for the better and to draw them to the author of most dreams – God. He gives you instructions and insights through dreams, but often we disregard them.

For in one way God may speak, and in a second, but one does not regard itIn a dream, a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls on men; while they slumber on the bed, then He opens the ear of men and seals their instruction” (Job 33:14 LITV). 

Dreams can seem ridiculous yet the interpretation is perfectly reasonable. This is true of Biblical dreams too. For example, Pharoah dreamed of seven cows that ate seven other cows. He also dreamed of seven ears of corn that ate seven other ears of corn. These true dreams saved Egypt from starvation once they where interpreted (Genesis 41:15-48).

Pilate’s pagan wife told him that she had had a dream that frightened her.

While Pilate was judging the case, his wife sent him a message. It said, "Leave that innocent man alone. I've been very upset today because of a dream I had about Him” (Matthew 27:19).

The dream instructed her that Pilate should have nothing to do with Jesus.

Examples of dreams and their affects

Gary (name changed) came to me with a dream. A few days prior to the dream he had shown a wrong attitude towards another Christians weaknesses and their church.

Gary saw himself walking towards two houses that were next to each other. Then he walked round the back of the houses and saw Christians playing football in a field,  he recognised some from a church he knew. Then the football was kicked and it landed in a farm.

After some time I received the interpretation. [Basic Message of dream in bold].  The two houses represented two churches, meaning churches should stand side by side. Then Gary saw the two Christian teams playing football in a field, meaning churches should not have a ‘attitude of competition’, they should not be playing against each other but be on the same team in the field. They are in the field to sow and reap. Then the ball was kicked into a farm. Meaning that  ‘the goal’ [hence the football being kicked] of the church is to be like a farm, namely a place of sowing (the Word) and reaping (bringing people to Jesus)

A girl in her puberty years dreamed that she was killing her mother and felt guilty.

The dreams, however, was saying that as she matures her mother must symbolically die so that the girl could come into a new relationship with her mother, not as a child anymore but as an adult to an adult.

Another dream: I’m in a doctors office. The doctor tells me, “Slow down or speed up.” As he said speed up, he pointed his finger towards the sky.

This dream was a strong warning to someone who did not take their physical health seriously. The doctor (Jesus) was telling the dreamer to not endanger their health through pushing their body beyond its limits by over working (i.e. slow down) otherwise they will speed up towards an early death (hence pointing to the sky).

This dream reveals that dreams can save your life.

Guidelines

1. Dreams are almost always symbolic and rarely literal:

The Bible uses symbolism extensively. A casual reading of the Bible will confirm this. Dreams are night parables. Jesus would never teach unless He used parables. “And with many such parables He spoke the Word to them, In this way people could understand what He taught.  But He did not speak to them without a parable. ..” (Mark 4:33-34). Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. He still speaks to us in night parables.

2. Dreams are almost always about you and issues in your life, even though others are in your dream. The number and type of dreams you receive about others depends on your relationship with the Lord.

3. Someone in your dream does not mean dream is about them. Most times it is not, so do not jump to conclusions.

I point this out as often people think the dream is about someone else when it is actually about themselves.

4. Never make major decisions based on dreams alone.

in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established” (Matthew 18:16).

5. Avoid relying on dream symbol books.

They assume a symbol means the same thing in all dreams. Many are misled like this.

Certainly, all who are guided by God's Spirit are God's children” (Romans 8:14).

6. Never go to get a dream interpreted from someone whose source of information is not Jesus. Only God can give the meaning.

"We both had dreams," they answered him, "but there's no one to tell us what they mean." "Isn't God the only one who can tell what they mean?" Joseph asked them” (Genesis 40:8).

7. A dream from God never contradicts the Bible.

Common Dreams (Not in order).

(1)) DREAMS OF SOMEONE DYING:

(2) DREAMS OF LOSING YOUR PURSE/WALLET OR LOOSING TEETH.

(3) DREAMS OF DECEASED RELATIVE

(4) DREAMS OF RETURNING TO A PAST RELATIONSHIP:

(5) FREQUENT NIGHTMARES:

(6) DREAMS OF BUILDING or VEHICLE

(7) DREAMS OF FLYING:

(8)DREAMS ABOUT ANIMALS:

(9) DREAMS OF FALLING:

(10) DREAMS OF BEING NAKED, IN BATHROOM, TOILET & SHOWER DREAMS: (Sometimes in public view)

(11) DREAMS OF TAKING A TEST (OR BACK IN SCHOOL TAKING A TEST)

(12) DREAMS OF BEING CHASED:

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