(As I am neither a Biblical scholar or in any way knowledgeable concerning the languages used to write the original scriptures I cannot incorporate the scripture into my life based on what I do not know or understand. That is why as I read and pray about scripture I depend on the Holy Spirit to counsel me and take the English translation as it is written, with the notes in my N.I.V. Study Bible and whatever books I have read on the particular passage.
Having witnessed, in person, the danger of following someone’s instruction or interpretation of the scripture based on an unsound foundation; I would never advocate someone to base their spiritual live on how I believe the scripture reads. I urge each person to seek their answers for themselves. Never except for truth what you cannot find solid basis for in the scripture for yourself along with the leadership of the Holy Spirit and the teaching of someone with knowledge of the languages and background of the Bible you may lack.)
This series of blogs began fermenting last month with a weird and disturbing dream I had. This is the dream:
I am watching the funeral procession of Abraham Lincoln as it comes down a long brick paved avenue. The horse-drawn wagon with the flag draped coffin of the President is approaching a circular part of the road and in the center of that circle is a fountain surrounded by flowers. Then I am in the wagon, holding on for dear life to the coffin containing President Lincoln, fighting against the bumpy road and the jarring of his coffin that seems to be about to cause the coffin to end up in the road. Suddenly the axle or wheel breaks on the “rear passenger side” of the wagon as it hits an unseen pothole in the roadway. The wagon falls. Now I am attempting against an even greater pull of gravity and laws of nature, to keep Lincoln’s coffin from sliding to the ground and perhaps his body tumbling out.
I can feel my muscles straining, feel the coffin slipping from my hand holds and I go from thinking, “I can’t let this happen!” to thinking, “Wait this isn’t really happening!” It occurs to me that what I am taking part of has any basis in the history I’ve read about. People are yelling at me, no one is helping me, and I am now too yelling, “This isn’t real, right? This can’t be real!”
Then I woke up, just as I am sure Lincoln’s body tumbles from the coffin but whether Lincoln’s coffin and/or his body falls out of the wagon I do not know although had I stayed asleep long enough I am certain both would have. It was disturbing and rather creepy. I posted the dream on my Facebook page.
A few days later an old friend of mine from high school who is now a minister told me he was no dream interpreter but that he had seen a lot of symbolism in my dream. Having caused my interest to peak I asked him about it and privately he emailed me what he felt was an interpretation of my dream given to him by our God. My friend, Fred*, wasn’t sure I’d accept what he had to say as a message inspired by God. He was also unsure whether I would be offended or whether I was in a place to hear what he had to say.
But I was ready, for the first uneasiness caused by my dream had passed and all the wise cracks about what food I had eaten or changes in my medication had occurred. What Fred didn’t know was what God would remind and show to me when I took what Fred had said and God and I “talked it over” during my quiet time with Him. When it all came together I was left having to acknowledge that my dream was filled with symbolism of my life now.
Fred went on to tell me, in the love of God and of old and tried friendship, what I needed to do to move on with my life. I haven’t embraced that revelation as willingly as I have the interpretation of my dream itself. Fred told me to do so much I knew had to be done and that I so DON’T WANT TO DO.
As the year 2012 drew to a close and 2013 began I found myself acknowledging many things. The post I made at midnight New Year’s Day spoke of winter being for me, an odd time to celebrate new life for things are dormant instead of bursting with new life. But winter affords us the time to PREPARE for new life. It is the time we stay closer to home and hearth and family. It is the time farmers repair equipment, merchants plan the stocking of new wares for spring, heartier soups and stews are prepared, the sun rises later and fades sooner, past times of reading, studying and crossword puzzles seem perfect activities. It is a when one has time to think. It is often a time when travel is more risky and one has to think of how to deal with ice, sleet, snow, wind and low temperatures.
It is not a time I am accustom to taking a vacation or journey. Yet here I am on this journey. I am straining against reality. I am fighting to uphold a way of life I held dear and against the loss of it for it means dependence on others that my earlier life taught me was dangerous. I’ve known this day was coming; I just never could stomach the realities of it. Now, I have no choice. Without a doubt the axle/wheel is broken for my left leg is gone from above the knee down and in trying to keep “what was” on the wagon on it there has been a tremendous physical strain on me. I cannot accept on my deepest levels, that what is happening is happening, that it is real. I am as much confused by my own thoughts and feelings as I am by those outside of me yelling at me so loudly I cannot hear what they are saying.
I am entering the “winter” of this time for me, both by the calendar and in my life. I have to take the time to prepare for new life, sort through what needs to be mended or let go of, do the mending or the cleaning out and readying for spring. Part of that is going to be rejoicing as the new spring arrives and part of that is going to be mourning what is dead and of no longer use to me.
I’m not sure how one “mourns” the loss of a limb or observes the end of one way of life while readying for the start of another. I am sure of this though, it is going to be painful and it is going to be challenging. It is going to be exciting and it is going to be an affirmation of life. It is going to be covered with the fingerprints of God.
It is also my hope that others who are in a time of mourning for whatever loss in this winter season will find a light to help them find the pathway through. It doesn’t matter if where you are it is 101 or -31 degrees outside for this winter season is here for you as it is for me regardless of what the calendar reads. The time of mourning arrives with the death of what we will mourn.
Will you join me in whatever way you can during this winter of my life?