I have a recurring dream that has been terrifying. The kindÂ of dream where you awake covered in sweat, breathing hard, and thanking the Lord that it was only a dream. It has nothing to do with drowning, clowns, or falling (well sort of).
It begins with me being at a Christmas party. There is the sound of music and various sounds of being at a party (clinking of silverware and dishes, the crackling of a fire, laughs, conversations, little feet running, etc.)
The room that I find myself in is beautifully decorated with Christmas apparel. There is yard after yard of garland, golden balls, bells, and thousands of lights. The room is dark but light by the tiny white lights and candles. The room has a feeling of home and it is when I have taken in the beauty of the room and am comfortably sitting by myself that I realize that she is there.
I always enter the dream sitting in this place and there is a knowledge that she has just passed through the room even though I donâ€™t remember what she looks like or how I know her. Lingering in the room is the smell of her perfume from her presence only moments before and now I hear her whisper from the darkness of another room to join her.
I donâ€™t really have to move, only let go. Let go of everything and deeply and slowly inhale. It is then that I begin to drift. At the moment when I know that I have smelled too deeply of her perfume and at the point of taking like changing actions, I have a moment of clear thinking.
It is at this point that I glance down to find my feet bound in some ancient crudely fashioned chain. I yell â€œnoâ€ as loud as I can â€“ but the sounds of the party continue, no one hears me. The chains begin to pull me into darkness, and I yell one more time, â€œI am not his!â€ I glance to my right and see a warriorsâ€™ helmet perfectly crafted for my head, and I can almost make out the shape of my face in itâ€™s front. It was made in the depths below, and comes back as if I remember wearing it in some distant battle, and had forgotten of its dusty existence.
I yell one more time, â€œI am His!â€ All parties concerned know who I mean when I say, â€œHis.â€ There is no need to mention His name, and I am almost ashamed to mention it considering my predicament. Then the chains release, and I am awake.
The battle is never really for my soul, for it already belongs to Christ. The battle is for my effectiveness. Who am I fighting for and how effective will I become? My fear is that I will be led away by a temptation; that I will smell too deeply of her perfume, and be led away into darkness and ineffectiveness â€“ even fighting for the Evil One and not even know it â€“ that the helmet already fitted for my head will be returned once more.
The temptressâ€™s perfume fogs the mind and lulls one into sleep. Her desire is for you to smell deeply, and cast everything aside â€“ let go, and not to consider the cost.
Thatâ€™s my nightmare. Â Her perfume has always been just a room away.
Solomon tells his son that wisdom is what will keep him from destroying his life. I pray that God gives us all nightmares and constantly remind us of the cost of lacking wisdom. Proverbs 2:17-22 “SoÂ you will be delivered from the forbiddenÂ woman,Â fromÂ the adulteressÂ withÂ her smooth words,Â 17Â who forsakesÂ the companion of her youthÂ and forgetsÂ the covenant of her God;Â 18Â for her house sinks down to death,Â and her paths to the departed;Â 19Â none who go to her come back,Â nor do they regain the paths of life.Â 20Â So you will walk in the way of the goodÂ and keep to the paths of the righteous.Â 21Â For the uprightÂ will inhabit the land,Â and those with integrity will remain in it,Â 22Â but the wicked will beÂ cut off from the land,Â and the treacherous will be rooted out of it.”