Saturday, March 28, 2015

Time for an Adjustment

Photo by Dematt 2006


I dreamed I was at a chiropractor’s office to have an adjustment. I check in at a desk on the first floor and realize it is a multilevel office space with rooms above surrounding a central area. Oddly, each of the three-story glass sides could be closed off by a very tall oak door extending from the top floor ceiling to the ground level floor, giving the effect of a full-sized dollhouse.

The lady checking in before me says she knows me from dancing, and asks “Are you OK? You look unwell since the last time I saw you.”

Taken aback, I reply curtly, “Maybe it’s because we’re both so much older. I don’t even recognize you.”

The woman turns away from my rude remark, and the blonde receptionist explains that my insurance will cover the full course of treatment, except for a copay of 50 cents. I don’t have two quarters with me, and she says I can bring it next time.

I spot the chiropractor scurrying around, a tall, thin, middle-aged man with mousy brown hair and thick glasses. He hands me a pile of forms and tells me to go upstairs, fill out the forms, and change in one of the rooms. Many people are there entering and leaving the rooms, but I finally find one that is unoccupied.

I remove my windbreaker and am surprised to find that I am wearing a very ornate necklace, composed of brass medallions welded together and enameled in bright blues and iridescent greens to give the effect of a peacock’s tail. I remove that and am confused and embarrassed to see that my neck and shoulders are wrapped in tin foil, and even worse, there is no trash can in the room where I could discreetly discard it. So I crumple it up and set the necklace and jacket on top of it on a counter, hoping the chiropractor won’t notice.

After a very long time, the chiropractor comes in and says he won’t need to examine or treat me, but that I’ll be put on a traction device. I get very angry that after this endless wait I will not even be treated by human hands but instead will be put on a machine, without any personal attention to my problem or symptoms I intend to leave, and I look for my jacket and necklace, but they have disappeared. I start yelling loudly that I’m going to expose the chiropractor and his practice for fraud.

As I awaken and come to my senses, I realize that it is indeed time for an adjustment – an attitude adjustment, that is, and not a chiropractic adjustment. Throughout the dream I had become increasingly annoyed and ultimately ballistic with those around me, when in fact I had no one to blame but myself.

As a born-again Christian who has placed her faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:1-4) as the only Way to Heaven (John 14:6), I am blessed to have His Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 1:13; 4:30) and the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16) within me. I have no business turning to the world to solve my problems when the Spirit within gives me access to all of His wisdom, power, and love. True, I often fail to trust Him because I still must deal with my sin nature (Romans 7:5-25), but that is no excuse for expecting help from the world system instead, which can only disappoint (2 Corinthians 6:14).

Jesus Christ is not only our Healer and Great Physician (Jeremiah 8:22; Mark 2:17; Matthew 9:12; Luke 4:23), but He is our Compass Who aligns us with His perfect will, if we allow it (Luke 22:42). That is not to say that God cannot work through doctors and modern medicine, for He does, yet we need to seek His guidance for our physical as well as our spiritual health (James 5:15).

The chiropractic office in the dream may symbolize man’s vain attempts to manipulate the truth of God’s Word, just as an inept chiropractor may attempt to heal by spinal manipulation, only to cause more harm than good. False churches spreading false doctrine (2 Timothy 4:3-4; Matthew 7:15; 21-23) are packed out with seekers looking for an easy fix for their heartache, but the solutions offered are no more real than a doll’s house or a set for The Twilight Zone.

Often these churches are not even led by in-person preaching, relying instead on a mechanical projection of a preacher delivering a message somewhere else. The traction apparatus offered in the dream, instead of a specific treatment plan based on a careful in-person evaluation, suggests the harm of a “church” where the sheep have no shepherd (Matthew 9:36; Mark 6:34). Just as I was given many forms to fill out in the dream, some cults have their members complete “personality inventories” or other questionnaires dealing with sensitive information that can be used to manipulate rather than to help.

The absurdly low copay of 50 cents in the dream suggests to me the philosophy of cults and works-based religions. These insist that Jesus’ finished work on the cross (John 19:30; Hebrews 10:10-14) is not enough to ensure our salvation, and that we have to bring our own good deeds to the table if we hope to earn our way to Heaven.

Yet the Bible says that we are saved by grace through faith, and not by our own works (Ephesians 2:8-9). Fifty cents is not even a drop in the bucket compared to the cost of a complete course of treatment, and any works we could add to the perfect sacrifice Jesus made becomes not only insignificant but actually insulting to Him. Jesus paid our sin debt in full, and all our own righteousness is no better than filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6).

Jesus told His followers to be in the world, to be salt and light for the world (Matthew 5:13-16), yet not to be of the world (John 15:19; 17:11-18). In the dream I failed this command, for I allowed my pride to be hurt and resorted to snide comments when I should have offered Christian love (John 15:17).. Rather than being a good testimony to my Savior’s love, I lashed out in anger, not only at the other patient, but at the chiropractor and staff.

When I took off my coat, I was surprised and uncomfortable about what was underneath. The ornate necklace was clearly inappropriate to wear to a doctor’s appointment, with its many metallic plates like a shield of armor decorated in a peacock design. This suggests that I was insulating my heart with pride that kept me from God (Psalm 10:4; 1 John 2:16) instead of relying on the shield of faith that is a crucial part of the armor of God (Ephesians 6:16).

Instead of the breastplate of Christ’s righteousness (Ephesians 6:14), I was wearing tin foil on my neck and shoulders! What a poor imitation of His holiness, for my own self-righteousness and works can neither protect nor justify me. God knows the heart, which is desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9). The heart will betray and condemn us unless it is covered in Christ’s perfect goodness and purity.

May we beware of false doctrine, cults, and churches that do not honor Jesus Christ, His example and His Word. May we be careful to put on the whole armor of God each day to resist the devil and his strategies (Ephesians 6:11-13), relying on Christ’s completed work on the cross, His perfect holiness, and His resurrection (Galatians 6:14). May we have an attitude adjustment, our mind becoming aligned with God’s perfect will for our life instead of being conformed to the world (Romans 12:2).

May we stand straight for what we believe, allowing the two-edged sword of His Word (Hebrews 4:12) to penetrate between the joints and marrow, the soul and spirit, and to discern the thoughts and intents of our heart!  May He create a clean heart (Psalm 51:10) and renew a right spirit within us!

© 2015 Laurie Collett
children's ministry blogs

Bible
Top 1000
Womanhood With Purpose
Adorned From Above
No Ordinary Blog Hop

39 comments:

  1. Oh my, Laurie, I read this and thought, "That doesn't sound like the Laurie I know." I was relieved to find out it was a dream! So much of the time an attitude adjustment is all we need. We called it finding a "happy face" when our children were little. It's impossible without Jesus' help.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Pamela,
      I'm so glad you realized this was just a dream and not the way I normally behave! So true -- in the flesh, we can do little to alter our countenance or behavior, but only in the power of the Spirit.
      May you have a blessed Lord's day and week,
      Laurie

      Delete
  2. Beautiful analogy between the chiropractor's visit and the need we all have for an attitude adjustment. It is in the turning to God that we find what we need to change our perspective and find our strength. Love these words tonight. Happy Sabbath friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So blessed to hear that you enjoyed the post! Thank you so much for your encouraging comment. God is truly all we need!
      Love in Him,
      Laurie

      Delete
  3. Dear Laurie,
    Having just been in hospital within the last two months for a major heart operation, I have found your latest post to be very striking!
    I have read something about chiropractics, and its founder, Daniel D. Palmer, who challenged the then known medical world with a theory that all illness and infirmities were caused by misalignment of the spinal vertebrae, and by manipulation, whole body healing can be achieved. He made it clear that he had no intention of challenging Mary Eddy Baker and her developing theory of Christian Science and her method of spiritual healing, but rather to work alongside her.
    Mainstream medicine has classed these therapies as quackery, and has no valid proof of physical healing, hence I can see the parallel between chiropractic treatments and reliance on our own works to get to Heaven without the atoning power of Jesus Christ.
    And that is the tragedy of the Roman Catholic Church, who teaches a works-based salvation, yet has some two billion adherents under its wings.
    An excellent post. God bless.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Dear Frank,
    I truly appreciate your insights, given not only your doctrinally sound beliefs but also your experience with physical illness and its treatment. Sadly, today's society wants a quick fix, thinking that a sudden jolt to the spine can cure a lifetime of poor health habits, or that paying money, being baptized or any other good works can earn a position in heaven.
    Praise God that Jesus is the only Way, Truth and Life!
    God bless,
    Laurie

    ReplyDelete
  5. Great post...such a neat way to describe your faith. Very creative ❤️

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Beth! I appreciate the visit & kind comment!
      Many blessings,
      Laurie

      Delete
  6. Interesting dream - I wish I could remember all these types of details in my dreams as I could learn from them. Love the tin foil underneath and the attitude adjustment lesson too. quite insightful. Thanks for stopping by my blog today too. enjoyed coming here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Jean, for your visit & comment! So glad you enjoyed the post and that we had an opportunity to "meet" through our blogs!
      May you have a blessed week in Him,
      Laurie

      Delete
  7. What a dream! It seems I regularly need attitude adjustments.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Rose! Thanks for your comment. I think we all need attitude adjustments from time to time -- praise God He restores & renews us!
      God bless,
      Laurie

      Delete
  8. Hi Laurie,
    I love the way that the Lord reveals things to us in dreams. I could not help laughing again at some of the things that you described happened in the dream. God has an amazing way of revealing what is on the inside to us. We can see why we have to have our minds renewed in Christ, the old carnal mind is completely guided by self satisfaction. I know that I could never change on the inside without the Holy Spirit's convincing and conviction. I love your dreams, nice post.,
    God bless

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Brenda,
    Yes, I would much rather that God remind me of the need to turn to Him rather than to my flesh or to the world in a dream rather than through real life circumstances! May we heed His still, small voice and not wait for him to resort to drastic measures to get our attention.
    Thanks as always for your encouraging and insightful comment. May you have a blessed week in Him!
    Laurie

    ReplyDelete
  10. What a great reminder to rely on Scripture! I love how you turn to the Bible to understand the contents of your dream (and of life in general).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Shannon, for your lovely comment! May we always turn to His Word for wisdom and understanding!
      God bless,
      Laurie

      Delete
  11. Wow, Laurie- this is an amazing interpretation of your dream. I appreciate the way you took it apart, line upon line, pairing it with precept upon precept. Thank you for your comment at Faith + Testimony. I am glad to reconnect with you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Dawn, for your very kind words of encouragement. I'm so glad that you enjoyed the post and that we were able to reconnect!
      Love in Christ,
      Laurie

      Delete
  12. We all need regular attitude adjustments, don't we? That sin nature is always pulling against our born again spirits! All the more reason to keep our hearts and minds full of God's Word! Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen, Donna -- it's a daily battle between our sin nature and the indwelling Holy Spirit! But if we put on the whole armor of God, we can have the victory through Him!
      May you have a blessed week in Him,
      Laurie

      Delete
  13. I must admit I was confused at the beginning, Laurie. Until I understood it was a dream.
    A tough post for us all, because we all need an attitude adjustment. And sadly that is been sold on the right and the left and none of it really helps, only God can do it for us. And many times even He is used as a poster boy for something that has nothing to do with Him, the cults you were speaking of.
    It is sad to see how many of us are led astray and then feel betrayed when we can't find what we were promised. Even sadder when that anger is directed towards God, who has been trying to tell us all the way that it was not Him. That we need to seek Him.
    Thank you also for your visit to my blog Faithfully In Ecuador!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for sharing your insights. So true, that we all need an attitude adjustment -- one that only He, and not the world, can provide. May we stand firmly in Him and pray for Him to create a clean heart and restore a right spirit within us. May you have a blessed Resurrection Sunday!
      Laurie

      Delete
  14. Another great post, Laurie.

    It is amazing how easily we shift from putting on god's armor and allowing the Spirit to lead us to trying to do everything ourselves, in the process turning people away.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Donald, for the encouraging words! Sadly, yes, our sin nature keeps wanting to assert itself. Only by yielding to the Holy Spirit and daily putting on the armor of God can we have His light shining through us,
      God bless,
      Laurie

      Delete
  15. Your dreams always reveal Jesus and His mercy. Dreams may not be how we actually are, but in your vision, much was revealed about changes that we must watch for. Abruptly we can feel pride, annoyance, and a desire to do it our-self with a co-pay. Thank you for sharing your precious story with us here at Tell me a Story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Hazel,
      I really appreciate your kind words -- you are an encourager! Praise God that He knows everything about us and loves us anyway, restoring us whenever we return from our futile striving to His perfect flow. Thanks for your lovely comment and for hosting, and God bless!
      Laurie

      Delete
  16. What a vivid and powerful dream! Aren't you just so thankful that God gets our attention and offers us those attitude adjustments every time we need them - 'free' of charge, since He already paid the price? Happy Easter! Visiting from Holly's Testimony Tuesday link up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great point, Karrilee -- He bought us out of the slave market of sin, and freely gives us an attitude adjustment whenever we turn to Him! Thanks so much for your visit and kind comment -- you are a blessing!
      Happy Easter to you and yours,
      Laurie

      Delete
  17. Hi Laurie, this is deep. So much lessons here. I am glad I read it.
    God bless and Happy Easter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Ifeoma,
      I'm so glad you enjoyed the post! Thanks so much for your kind comment. God bless you and yours and may you all have a Happy Easter!
      Laurie

      Delete
  18. Wow. This dream was intense and your introspection so enlightening. I have to admit, I have been noticing through social media some crazy un-theologically sound posts getting much attention. It makes me want to scream. Praying with you that Truth reigns in the hearts of those who love Him and those who do not yet know Him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jen, I so much appreciate your encouragement and insights. The devil is working overtime to distort God's truth and deceive many. Joining you in prayer that truth will reign. May God bless you for all you do to share His truth.
      Laurie

      Delete
  19. It's amazing how vivid and intense dreams can be. Thank you for sharing yours at the #SmallVictoriesSundayLinkup!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Echo, for your comment and for hosting! May you and yours have a blessed Easter!
      Laurie

      Delete
  20. I can relate to the need of an attitude adjustment lately. :) It's been a long week and this was a great read. Thank you for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed this, Letetia! Praise God that He gives us peace and joy in Him even in trying times!
      God bless you,
      Laurie

      Delete
  21. Laurie, that's quite a detailed dream! And quite an interpretation as well. I love reading things like this. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Laurie, that's quite a detailed dream! And quite an interpretation as well. I love reading things like this. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Mary -- I'm so glad you enjoyed it! You are a blessing and an encourager!
      Love in Christ,
      Laurie

      Delete