The Voice of the Awakening / by Michael Nichols

Ever felt like you were caught in a dream? no, make that caught in a comatose trance? Not one of those dreams where you could manipulate things and control your fate, but one where the outcome, no matter how hard you try, ends up being simply watching everything fall apart around you? Why do I ask? Because I have some stories to tell....

As a teen, I have dreamed and dreamed a million dreams, some of which have actually played out. This one, I'm not sure why I had it, because "no man knows the times or the seasons which God has put in His own power." But it went something like this... I was outside my elementary school. Everyone was running out and into this random set of bleachers. I saw no faces, but I did feel God's presence as they assembled, overflowing off the bleachers. And as this presence grew, I heard Him say, "Well done. Come home." Light overtook us, and I awoke in my bed.

Why I dreamed this dream I don't know. All I knew was that we were going "home." Home... If only everyone could go "home." If only everyone didn't feel alone. After all, if you feel alone in a place swarming with people, who will you talk to? Who will you trust? People will let you down, intentionally or not. Nothing is forever. So if that's true, why do we even have the concept? If there is no good in this world, how can we imagine it? What could there possibly be to live for, if all we have is now, and if all that now consists of is slow death? just a slow cancer, spotty at first, but spreading to every corner of the universe, every corner of our hearts, collective and individual?

It's a nightmare. You know how that theory goes, that if you die in your dreams, you die in real life? what if you died in THIS nightmare? does the real you die somewhere else? That may or may not be a good simile because it may or may not be a valid theory. However, the connection between the conscious and subconscious minds is undeniable. Dreams have always been shown to be one thing if not two: revelations of God, and expressions of the subconscious in a way that the conscious mind can understand better (maybe a good analogy would be a cipher that the subconscious gives to the conscious to decipher it, so that they can be in communion, as one, as they should be). We all dream, whether at night, or in the day, in our sleep, or awake, whether they be things we know we want, or things entangled in the web of confusion our lives become. The question is: are these dream just us, or is there something more to them? are they delusions, or are they destiny waiting to be written? You interpret that, for your interpretation of it will spell your destiny.

And if they really are destiny, how do we awaken? how can the nightmare cease? and how can it change? You choose. The things that we see as fantasy - good, love, hope, faithfulness, security, happiness, joy, peace - are NOT fantasy. If they were, they wouldn't burn a hole in the stomach of your heart like the absence of food burns a hole in the stomach of your body, 'cause, after all, food isn't a fantasy, no matter how distant it is. You have to strive for it, believe in it, and find it where it is.

We are in a fog. The things we dream of, the nightmares wrapped with seemingly unattainable hopes, seem so close we can touch them, but so far away you have to scream for them. We can never seem to accept the bad with the good. It's always one or the other. But then, we didn't make this place. A striving between the Lord God and His creation and rival Satan catches us, living souls, in the crossfire. We're just a battleground of hearts, trying to be conquered by either side, though one side knows we will die with him, and the other side wants to save us before we choose that other way forever, because sin burns in the presence of God, and anything that we hold onto above Him, if we choose to, will burn us with it, simply because we make our beds, and we have to lie in them. Would you rather be the only entity alone forever with no other good thing with you, or would you, as Lord, create a world that could choose to be with Him and like Him, and let those who choose to shrink into the gravity of sin burn with it back into the nothing they once were? After all, that's what we came from, whether you believe in the big bang or intelligent design. If nothing is forever in this world, something has to be somewhere else. And if there is something somewhere else, whom will you let die? and whom will you save?

We are the voice of the awakening. God calls to us because, even though we sinned, fell short, failed, rebelled, it's NOT too late, and He wants us back. He didn't run away. WE did. And running away from God never works. We chose to enter the realm of good and evil, thus embracing both life AND death. Without it, we wouldn't know what life really is worth, and we wouldn't know death can and should be turned away from before it finds ITS death. And as He call to us, we call to the rest of us. We are His echoes. And when everything is falling apart, as those who have heard the call, it is our choice to heed it or shun it, and to abandon the rest or to bring them with us.

Sincerely, with love.