Summary: Dreams and goals are necessary for a full and fulfilling life. What is necessary to make certain our dreams are approved of God?
August 11, 2002
28"Then after I have poured out my rains again, I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your old men will dream dreams. Your young men will see visions.
14For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
A very young child was learning the fruits of the Spirit. Her mom asked her to recite them; "Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and remote control," was her reply.
Spirituality is big these days. With the advent of the "New Age" movement, even well-known celebrities talk about spiritual things. Do you know the name Sarah Michelle Gellar? How about the character she portrays…Buffy the Vampire Slayer? In an interview with Scotland’s Daily Record she told them her… personal spirituality borrows from a hodgepodge of religions. I consider myself a spiritual person. I believe in an idea of God, although it’s my own personal ideal. I find most religions interesting, and I’ve been to every kind of denomination: Catholic, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist. I’ve taken bits from everything and customized it. But Gellar also did her homework, telling Rolling Stone that she read through the Bible in 1999. Two actors reportedly have become Christians while working on the show, but its emphasis on witchcraft has kept it at the top of many Christians’ Must Flee TV lists.
Buffet-style spirituality (where you pick a little of this which you like from that religion…and a little of something else here and there) is the number one religion these days. We in America are fiercely independent thinkers. We have that John Wayne/Clint Eastwood mentality - Don’t tell me what to do - and if you think you can, well just MAKE MY DAY, Pilgrim.
The problem with that when it comes to spirituality, is that you can be sincere in what you think - it just doesn’t mean you’re going to be right in what you think.
When it comes to God, just because you’re sincere about what you think, doesn’t make you right - or acceptable in God’s eyes. You cannot pick what you simply want to believe about God. In fact, sincerity that is aimed in the wrong direction can get you in big trouble. God reserves for Himself how He is to be worshipped; THAT is the issue and whole idea (for human consumption) of God. He is Sovereign…in charge…or He really isn’t God. We must grasp that obvious command to worship HIM, and not our IDEA of who He is and what WE think! Some things are obvious!
Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson are camping. They pitch their tent under the stars and go to sleep. Sometime in the middle of the night, Holmes wakes Watson. "Watson, look up at the stars and tell me what you deduce."
Watson says, "I see millions of stars, and if even a few of those have planets, it’s quite likely there are some planets like Earth, and if there are a few planets like Earth out there, there might also be life."
Holmes replies, "Watson, you idiot, somebody stole our tent!"
If we are to grasp the obvious about what Joel and Paul said about living life as led by the Spirit of God, then what is it we will grasp? What can be said about the Spirit-led life?
It’s a Life of Dreams and Vision
It is helpful to define our terms here. A popular television show "Frasier" has a character named Daphne Moon, played by Jane Leaves. She is a winsome British young woman who maintains she has psychic visions. Her life and goals are controlled by whatever she "sees" in these dream-visions.
It’s really pretty funny stuff (especially when she eats pizza with anchovies just before going to sleep - what dreams and visions!).
That is not the kind of visionary Spirit-leadership the Bible holds. Rather, vision is like a window through which we wonder about tomorrow. The word "vision" is chizzaòyoòn (ïBéfˆç), literally, a revelation . It means we contemplate tomorrow. Animals can’t do that. They react to surrounding influences; they respond to instincts within to build a den or protect a cub. Only humans set goals and dream of tomorrow’s possibilities.
Do you have goals, dreams and visions? Are you planning for a bigger tomorrow than today? Are you planning for a greater tomorrow? I mean, are you involving yourself in something greater than yourself?
To be led by the Spirit of God is to bend your will to His and allow His revealed word (as we have in the Scripture) to inform your human mind and spirit - to shape you into the image of Christ, obedient, yielded, usable.
How do you do that?