Thought for Thursday

I saw a dream which made me afraid, and the thoughts upon my bed and the visions of my head troubled me. Daniel 4:5

Not all dreams are the same. I dreamed the other night of a farmer who had some pet bears. In the dream, the farmer gave one of the smaller bears a small bottle of liquid honey, which the animal devoured. Then he gave a larger bear a large bottle of honey, most of which the bear quickly ate. Then the bear allowed the rest of the honey to drain into a large tray. Another bear came along and tried to eat the honey in the tray, but the large bear dragged the tray away with his paw. Then I woke up. It was a very vivid dream, and I can remember its details clearly after all this time. But it did not alarm me, or cause me to be anything but amused, unlike the dream that Nebuchadnezzar had.

Does God speak through dreams today? Undoubtedly so. God has used dreams many times to convict saint and sinner alike, and also to provide guidance or warnings. Dreams are just one of the ways in which God tries to get someone’s attention. He also uses His Word – actually, this is His primary way of speaking to us, and if we heed it, no other approach is required. God also speaks to us through accidents or incidents that have a great impact on us. He speaks through the experiences and witnesses of others. He also speaks through natural phenomenon such as a storm or earthquake. Regardless of the way in which God speaks, He expects us to listen and to heed. Nebuchadnezzar listened, but failed to heed.

What Nebuchadnezzar saw in his dream bothered him so much he inquired into its meaning. Faithful Daniel filled him in. Unless he repented, God was going to deal harshly with him. But a year later, Nebuchadnezzar’s pride brought him into the very problem that his dream had represented. We also need to be warned that God means what He says, and expects us to be obedient to His message, or else suffer the consequences. There are always consequences to disobedience, although probably not as drastic as being reduced to living like a beast as Nebuchadnezzar had to experience. What a humiliation was his! God knows what we need to cause us to turn to Him in obedience and faith.

No matter how God is speaking to you today, He has direction for your life. And He desires that you follow it. Your best approach is to not only obey, but also to obey with pleasure and willingness. After all, God’s desire for you is for the very best for you. – Jim MacIntosh

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