Rules of Thumb for Japanese Ministries #11 Check Your Dreams

I know that the Bible has a number of stories where He spoke to people in dreams. I enjoy reading these and seek to learn from them.

I often have dreams that are kind of strange. i won’t bother you with examples. Occasional I have a dream that excites me so much I can’t sleep for the rest of the night. It usually relates to ministry, a new approach to sharing the gospel, a different way to do ministry that will change Japan and the world, a tool that just can’t miss!

Here is how I try to handle these night-time bolts of lightning. First of all I thank the Lord for the dream. I usually try to write down some of the key thoughts while they are fresh in my mind. Then I pretend I am Moses, not the Moses breaking the Red Sea, but Moses trying to run away from the burning bush. I line up the reasons why the idea won’t work, and why I am not the one to put action to the dream. And I pray, “Lord, if this is really you, please confirm this to me!”

Most of the time the dream turns out to have been a flash of indigestion or an over-stimulated imagination. Thankfully the Lord lowers me down to the ground and encourages me to be faithful with what He has given me to do. But a number of times He has continued to open doors and confirm that His voice in the dream was actually His voice.

And frankly, at times I have wasted a lot of energy and unnecessarily stirred up the dust before I finally discerned that the dream was just a dream.

“Thank you Lord for dreams and visions! Please continue to send them my way, but help me to clearly discern what is actually from You!”

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