Monday, May 4, 2015

Dreaming Dreams and Seeing Visions

"Behold, I have dreamed a dream, or in other words, I have seen a vision." 1 Nephi 8:2

I sleep, and  I am awake. I wake up, and I am asleep. 

Have you ever had a dream, woken up, and thought, "well that was weird nonsense and I think I'll just forget about it."?

well I am sorry to say that I have thought this to my self to many times. But as I have come to the Lord, I have realized that I should never ignore a dream.

I am a dreamer.

What do I mean by that?

"She's got big Ideas!!" (Well, sometimes... my biggest idea right now is how great it would be to be a goat farmer... man, I love goat cheese.)

I mean, sure I have always liked the idea of "living your dreams", and hearing success stories from people who have, I mean who doesn't want to live their fondest dream? I am a dreamer in this way with everyone else, but this blog is not about my desires in the temporal sense. To be quite sincere, I don't want much more than what I have already in this life. Though I might wish for this and that, I'm not a very ambitious person when it comes to worldly success or gain. It really just doesn't appeal to me much anymore. 

..........  ............ .. .........

"Earth to Rachel!! HEELLOOOOOO!!" "CCCCRRRR***Ground control to major tom **CCRRRR*"

 What?. oh right, as I was saying... what was I saying?

... yeah. I'm this too. But this is also not what I'm trying to focus on here. although, in some ways it is. I am being forced to focus on my severe lack of focus. As a stay at home mom with a bouncing baby boy (literally), it glares at me more than it ever has before. In high school it was a problem, as many of my peers and teachers would agree, I was never really in the classroom even if my attendance was near perfect. I was off in my day dream land, sipping borscht in a forest cottage.... while my grades took roller coaster rides. But to me it didn't matter so much, "eh, I don't need to listen to these Natzis anyway. What do they really have to offer?" (okay... I did have a few decent teachers, who said a few truthful and relavent things...I'll give 'em that, they made it a little more bearable.)

Now that I am a mother, every second of my life means something. I have to offer everything. It requires all that I can give. And that requires focus, and being present. Being here.

There is nothing like a weakness to motivate you to go to the Lord and seek answers.

"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." Ether 12:27

Through out my life I have experienced an array of dreams. Each night brings something different; dreams about my life and the people in it, dreams about other worlds, dreams about things that scare my pants off, dreams that are more like puzzles and mazes, and some dreams that are just plain weird. And then there are the dreams that I dream more than once. Once, twice, three times. except the third or second time, I was awake. It was real. It happened in 'real life'.
I use to brush this off, and think it was just one of those 'de sha voo voo tingys.'  It just happens sometimes. Big deal. but then it happened more frequently, and it would accompany significant life events. It became a way that I recieved answers from God, as I grew up and grew closer to Him through prayer. It was then that I began to wonder if there was something to my dreams. Was it a gift? or was it a curse? I was never sure. It was often a handy tool in times of need or times of want or loneliness, a way for the Holy Spirit to guide me. But often it made me feel distant, and  well... stupid, because I could never stay in tune with the now, and the present. I was missing out on things here, and I didn't even understand most of the things I was recieving when I was 'out there'. I was just floating in ignorance. Until quite recently, this reality was still completely true. 

On December 1st 2014, I was rebaptized. My family and I did it in a river of living, flowing water. My husband baptized me, and as I came up from the river, I was struck in the heart as if with lightning, which extended rapidly through the rest of my body. The Lord cleansed me of my sin, my guilt, and my pains and sorrows that I was harboring inside me and weighing me down heavily.  I gave those things up, and the Lord took them away with his Fire. I was new. This experience changed me. It changed my dreams. It changed the way I approached them.

My dreams became so much more vivid, so much more real, I often forgot what was reality and what was not those few days after my baptism of fire. I began to have a hunger for the scriptures, these opened to me more than they had ever before in my life. I wanted to read them all the time! (I had never been much of a scriptorian or a reader for that matter, so this seemed very new to me. Not that I never read or appreciated the scriptures, I loved them, but honestly I didn't understand them.) They were more real now. I read them, I loved them, I understood them! Most especially The Book of Mormon. Then I started to apply scriptures to my dreams. That's when things really started to come together.

 I have since had visitations with the Lord in my dreams much more frequently. He is the orchestrator of them. I have learned many things from Him about myself, the world around me, and prophecies that will come upon the Gentiles, the wealth of which is already so apparent in the Book of Mormon, but now they have more vividness, pleasant or extremely unpleasant clarity in my mind. I have a personal witness of at most a cent of a thousand that shall come forth.

 I have had a more personal understanding of Christ. I have a relationship with Him. He's my friend, my father, my brother and my Savior. My God.

I have a desire to do what the Lord asks of me. I want to be what he wants me to be. I am committed to Him, though I still falter and make mistakes, my heart loves Him and I know that through His mercy, and power I may be successful in doing all that he commands me to do, if I will have faith.

This blog is created with that intention. To follow through with His commandments to me. 

Now, I'll have you know that I don't think of myself as a very learned person. I'm 20. I barely scraped by in high school, and I'm not going to college. And I may never "continue my educaiton." I do read books that I think are worth while and that will teach me things of value, but I'm not a speed reader queen, and with a baby and a home to upkeep (which is a whole new learning curve for me right now by the way) there is only so much that I can absorb in a period of time. 

I'm also a fairly insecure person. I treasure what self confidence I do possess. I am improving with the Lord grace, but I am still a little akward in speech due to this insecurity, and at the moment I don't have to many opportunities to improve my public speeking skills, Or many opportunities to testify of these thing verbally to as vast an audience that the internet can provide. I have been told however that I am decent a writter. But I feel rusty. So if you can imagine, I'm pretty scared to do this. Even if it is just writting something up and posting it on the internet. But I cannot let my fears and weaknesses damn me. I NEED TO TESTIFY OF MY SAVIOR AND THE THINGS HE HAS SHOWN UNTO ME IN VISION. I have to do it. I want to do it. He wants me to do it. And He assures me with his words to Moroni in Ether chapter 12.

"And it is by faith that my fathers have obtained the promise that these things should come unto their brethren through the Gentiles; therefore the Lord hath commanded me, yea, even Jesus Christ.
And I said unto him: Lord, the Gentiles will mock at these things, because of our weakness in writing; for Lord thou hast made us mighty in word by faith, but thou hast not made us mighty in writing; for thou hast made all this people that they could speak much, because of the Holy Ghost which thou hast given them;

And thou hast made us that we could write but little, because of the awkwardness of our hands. Behold, thou hast not made us mighty in writing like unto the brother of Jared, for thou madest him that the things which he wrote were mighty even as thou art, unto the overpowering of man to read them.

Thou hast also made our words powerful and great, even that we cannot write them; wherefore, when we write we behold our weakness, and stumble because of the placing of our words; and I fear lest the Gentiles shall mock at our words.
 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.
Behold, I will show unto the Gentiles their weakness, and I will show unto them that faith, hope and charity bringeth unto me—the fountain of all righteousness.
  And I, Moroni, having heard these words, was comforted, and said: O Lord, thy righteous will be done, for I know that thou workest unto the children of men according to their faith;" 
v. 22-28

I am not magnificent in either writting or speaking. But with faith His righteous will be done.

It takes faith to write the words of the Lord, and faith to recieve them. I know that there is a purpose not just for me in this blog, but for the readers, or else I would not be doing this.

 If you do not wish to read my words, then you ought to go to the Book of Mormon, therein lies the truth for us Gentiles in a fullness, and the door to more. Most of what I write here will be supported and based in the Book of Mormon.

The posts and passages I will select will be as the Lord directs. They will be pretty strait forward and simple. I am prepared to sacrifice some time to write here the things that please Him. I don't know how often I will post things, as even a mother cannot run faster than she is able. But I will do my absolute best, and the Lord knows my heart and my efforts. 

I hope to learn a lot from starting this, and fleshing out the things that I need to share with scripture and additional prayer. I still have a lot to learn from the Lord, and I am only at the beginning of my journey. Yet, I must testify of what I do know and what I have recieved. I don't consider myself much of a teacher, but only a humble follower of Christ. Let the Spirit teach you.

I began this post with a scripture, and my own phrase. 
I will end with my own phrase and a scripture:

I sleep, I am awake. I wake, and I AM AWAKEND.

"I know that I am a visionary [wo]man; for if I had not seen the things of God in a vision I should not have known the goodness of God" 1 Nephi 5:4

I titled this blog "InBetween Visions" because I often feel like my day to day life is sandwhiched between the dreams and visions of the night. It's the meat. I'm in the flesh. We would not have been born into this world if we had nothing necessary to do here. This life is the time to prepare to meet God.

 I've realized that I have to start doing things here. I have to be here, but I also have to be 'there'. I have to take what I recieve in the visions or dreams and put it in context to the here and now. To know the interpretation thereof. And to let it pierce the veil that clouds my mortal eyes. This can only be done through Christ. I need to let the gifts of Christ that I recieve in my sleep, wake me up when I am awake. 

"O my brethren, hearken unto my words; arouse the faculties of your souls; shake yourselves that ye may awake from the slumber of death; and loose yourselves from the pains of hell that ye maynot become angels to the devil, to be cast into that lake of fire and brimstone which is the second death." 
Jacob 3:11

Let us awaken from the slumber of death! Seek the Lord and his councils! Seek him in your life. take your weaknesses to Him. And above all remember Faith, Hope and Charity, which bringeth unto Him- the fountain of all righteousness.