Saturday, July 6, 2013

Everybody’s Looking for Something

In this dream I have a behind-the-scenes look at an elaborate stage production. The Mistress of Ceremonies wants the costume designer to make her an “original” gown, but she wants him to copy a fashion she saw on Project Runway. It is an Erte style, Art Deco black dress, with a bandeau bra top, straps leading to a halter neck and choker, long crepe skirt, bare midriff with fabric strips connecting the top and skirt, and long black gloves with vertical slits allowing the skin to show through.

The final result is chic and dramatic, but she doesn’t want the audience to know she has stolen someone else’s design. She asks me to find her makeup tray, so I look inside a 1920’s style vanity, but it is filled only with cassette tapes and a recorder. I accidentally start the recorder playing and can’t shut it off. The song is a 1920’s tune that apparently accompanied the model on Project Runway when she showed the original design. The MC is furious because she thinks the audience will make the connection to her gown’s true origins.  

The dream then fast forwards to the final scene of the play, which is set like the Victorian drawing room in the Nutcracker ballet, ready for a lavish Christmas celebration. After the characters parade around and exchange not-so-pleasantries, the MC announces that the world is about to end, and this is their last chance to hold onto what is most important to them.

The final tableau shows each character worshipping their god, pledging their allegiance to what they hold most dear. A middle-aged woman who has parlayed her physical charms into a wealthy but loveless marriage and equally empty affairs draws close to her reflection in a full-length mirror. Her husband reaches lustfully for the young maid, who has her hands in the silver drawer.

The learned professor gets on one knee in a courtly pose and extends his arms to the bookshelf, as if he could encompass all the science, poetry, and philosophy contained in its volumes. While the athlete contorts his muscular frame into a manly expression of physical prowess, the obese glutton stuffs his face at the buffet, and the addict snorts his stash of cocaine. The children grab as many presents as they can, shoving each other aside, and run to the fireplace, peering up into the chimney and hoping they can get more from Santa.

A priest, who was invited to pray before the meal, piously holds his rosary in one hand and his censer in the other, looking upward to heaven yet hoping a crowd will kneel at his feet. Meanwhile, a beggar out in the cold, nearing the threshold in hopes of a few scraps discarded from the sumptuous dinner, flings himself prostrate on the ground and begs God for mercy and forgiveness.

I awoke with the realization that only the beggar, who realized he was a sinner in need of a Savior, would spend eternity in Heaven with Jesus Christ, and that the idol worshippers would all be cast into the lake of fire (Ephesians 5:5; Revelation 20:15;21:8)..

The pattern of the black dress reminded me of a “map” Todd Friel drew on a recent episode of the Wretched TV show, with the skirt representing the lake of fire, the top representing the “Devil’s Pond,” and the slits on the gloves, straps, and fabric pieces representing the tributaries feeding into the pond and ultimately into the lake of fire. He explained that Satan lures souls to follow the current into these various tributaries and rivers of worldy thought leading to destruction, including sexual immorality, substance abuse, humanism, atheism, pagan worship, and works-based religions.

In the dream, the dress design was stolen but masqueraded as an original creation. Satan is the great deceiver and the father of all lies (John 8:44), and in his desire to be God he imitates Him, from the unholy trinity to his distortion of God’s Word, seen first in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:1-5) and not ending permanently until he is cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10) . But all evil deeds are recorded and made known (Mark 4:22; Luke 8:17; (Ephesians 5:11-13), and those who rejected God and His Son will answer to Christ when He reads their sins from the books He keeps (Revelation 20:12).

Except for the beggar, all of the characters in this dream staked their eternal destiny on something other than faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ as the only way to Heaven (1 Corinthians 15:1-4; John 14:6). The “Christmas” celebration failed to honor Christ, Who came in the flesh (John 1:14) to reconcile sinful man to Holy God (2 Corinthians 5:18-19; Hebrews 2:17). Instead, it glorified the false gods of this world as the celebrants stumbled into Satan’s traps of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life (1 John 2:16).

Falling prey to the lust of the flesh were the drug abuser and the glutton. The middle-aged beauty succumbed to the lust of the eyes as well as the lust of the flesh, worshipping her own image while seeking confirmation of her desirability in meaningless sexual encounters. Her husband, who should have been the spiritual leader of the household (Ephesians 5:23-26), was no better. Small wonder that they had neglected their parental responsibilities of spiritual guidance, and that their greedy children were following in their parents’ footsteps !

Also attempting to satisfy the lust of the eyes and the pride of life was the maid, as those who crave wealth do so for the lovely things it buys as well as for the power linked to prestige and worldly success (1 Timothy 6:10). And the athlete placed his faith in his physical strength and accomplishments to win the respect of others (1 Corinthians 9:25). But we are saved by God’s grace alone, and not by our own works, no matter how impressive (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Thinking himself to be wise by embracing all the world’s writings, the professor proved himself to be a fool, as the world’s “wisdom” is no match for God’s Word. Trusting in evolution and humanism as absolute truth deceives men from realizing their own sinful nature and leads them to deny God’s very existence (Romans 1:21-25; Psalm 14:1; 53:1).

One would hope that the priest would be a better role model than the other characters in this morality play, but he too counted on his own works and self-righteousness (Luke 18:10-14) Vain repetitions in prayer, without speaking to God as a child approaches their Father (Matthew 6:7-9) for wisdom, advice, and loving guidance and provision, are meaningless works. Even worse, he pretended to be worshipping God while seeking only admiration and reverence from others (Matthew 6:1-5), which made him a false prophet and teacher whose only god was himself ((Matthew 7:15;:2 Peter 2:1).

Far outnumbered by those who entered eternity by the broad gate leading to destruction was the beggar. Sadly, those who have been born again (John 3:3-8) and accept Jesus Christ as the only Way, Truth and Life (John 14:6) are in the minority, and even Jesus said that His way is narrow (Matthew 7:13-14). May we renounce our false gods, repent of our sins, and trust in Him to lead us to eternal life!

Everyone is looking for something, but even in this life, nothing satisfies other than a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Only He brings joy, peace and abundant life here and now, and unimaginable, everlasting joy and peace in His presence in Heaven. May we tell all we encounter of His goodness and of the satisfaction only He can give!

© 2013 Laurie Collett
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David C Brown said...

Trusting the Saviour for eternity; having Him as satisfaction for the present.
But Ithnk God will have the victory in numbers too. Perhaps through the children.

Janis Cox said...

What a vivid dream. Never have that - never. Mine are crazy, mixed up - just like me I guess. :)
Thanks for sharing at Sunday Stillness.

Frank E. Blasi said...

Dear Laurie,
I felt God speaking to me in an extra-special way as I read your latest post. Indeed, the beggar was the only one who called on God for mercy, as Lazarus did outside the rich man's house (Luke 16).
As for the children on Christmas Day, well I guess we're all guilty on that one, aren't we? I recall the nights of Christmas Eve lying in bed and unable to sleep because of such excitement in receiving presents.
Oh God, have mercy on us! Any thoughts of children in Hell I find most distressing!
And the priest performing a religious act in order to attract public admiration, as the Pharisees did (Matthew 23)...
But my main point of concern as a blogger is that I may be tempted to feel like the priest in your dream. After all, are there any writers who not want a large following? I certainly would!
But rather, the principle aim of my blogging is to edify my readers and to glorify Christ, and even to evangelise, which I can do much better with a pen (or computer keyboard today) than I can orally.
A very thought provoking, but brilliantly written article.

Nadwrażliwiec said...

Last Sunday we had a sermon about it. Before the sermon our pastor said, that today a lot of people claim, that they believe in God. But our Lord has a name, He isn't simply "god" - and sometimes we forget about it, so people started to think, that we all believe in the same God - because for them (who are unsaved) "god" is like "God". But God, The Creator and Saviour, is known from Bible, His name is written as JHWH (Jahweh or Jehovah - it depends on translation), not as for example Allah, as a lot of people think. So we shouldn't forgive about the fact, that we know One God, who has a Name.
It is little the same reflection as in Your dream - Satan wants all people believe, that there is one god, in which everyone believe, but it isn't truth. One word can change the meaning.
Greetings from summer Cracow! :) Have a nice, blessed week.

Nadwrażliwiec said...

Sorry, I meant "forget" instead of "forgive" :)

Brenda said...

A beautiful post Laurie.
Your dream reflects the competition, greed, lies, deceit,lust, envy and self promotion, both in the secular and the religious societies. I agree absolutely with your thoughts as you awoke. God bless you Laurie.

Laurie Collett said...

Amen, David -- He alone satisfies, now and forever! It is much easier for children to be saved than for adults, probably because they are more likely to have a childlike faith. But there is hope at any age!
Thanks for your thought-provoking comment & God bless!

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Janis, for your comment and for hosting! All my dreams seem crazy & mixed up when I first remember them, but after thinking about them, they start to make sense.
May you have a blessed week in Him!

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Frank,

Thanks for your insightful and thought-provoking comment! Regarding the children, perhaps I should have mentioned in the post that children who die before they reach the age of accountability (which differs for each child based on their maturity and intelligence) go to Heaven. But even very small children can understand the Gospel message because of its simplicity.

All of us indeed have been guilty of clamoring over presents, as we are of other sins, but we are forgiven through His shed blood, if we repent. Only those who cling to their sin and renounce Christ are condemned.

Thanks for voicing your concerns about our motives as Christian bloggers -- I pray every day that my motive in blogging and in other ministries is to honor and glorify Him, and not to seek recognition from others, which can be a trap. But I don't think either of us has to worry about being like the priest in the dream. Firstly, he was touting a works-based religion, which makes him a false teacher. Secondly, he prayed not to God, but to draw attention from others. There is a difference between someone who wants to be seen "worshipping," like the Pharisees, and someone who earnestly prays to God in his secret closet.

But there is also a role for public prayer, just as there is for public preaching and teaching. The pastor prays out loud during the worship service to help direct the prayers of the congregation and to make them aware of prayer needs in the congregation. For public preaching and teaching, as in church, open-air preaching, and blogging, our purpose should always be to honor and glorify God and speak the truth from His Word.

That being said, as light we should want to be set upon a hill to have the most far-reaching effect for Him, and not to be hidden under a bushel basket. I would continue blogging if I thought I could positively affect even a single soul. But it is a confirmation to me that God is blessing this ministry when I read comments such as yours or when I see growing numbers of page views and blog "followers," realizing of course that the goal is for readers to follow Him.

May God richly bless you and your ministry,

Denise said...

wonderful post.

Anonymous said...

What a very nice post, thanks.

We invite you to come and share via our hop:
Happy Wordless Wednesday!

Laurie Collett said...

Excellent point, Zim! That is why it is so important to spread the name of Jesus, because there is no other Name by which people are saved. During the Tribulation there will be "one-world religion," and already there are movements to explore how gods of different religions are similar.
Hope you are having a wonderful summer, & God bless you!

Laurie Collett said...


Laurie Collett said...

Thank you, Brenda, for your encouraging words! May God bless you and your ministry too!

a joyful noise said...

Thank you for sharing at "Tell me a Story." I do enjoy your vivid dreams each with a lesson to learn. Yes, each person was reaching out for possessions or fame, but only one would be saved by casting himself upon the Lord and declaring his need of salvation.

Michell Pulliam said...

Very insightful post Laurie! Yes, we're commissioned to tell others of His goodness! Thanks so much for sharing and thanks for linking up! Have a blessed rest of your week!

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Denise & God bless!

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks for your lovely comment, for hosting, & for the invite! I'm linked up!
Blessings to you,

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Hazel, for hosting & for your lovely comment! May we all place Him above all else.
Love to you,

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Michell, for all you do to help share His Word! May your week be blessed also!

mail4rosey said...

I love the elaborate setting of the dream!! I agree that no matter what you are looking for, nothing will fulfill unless you are first full of Jesus. Happy to read your post, as always.

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Rosey! He alone can satisfy.
Many blessings to you, your family & ministry!

Donald Fishgrab said...

Great post, Laurie.

Far too many are so caught up in other things they never realize they are missing the only one that matters.

Janis Cox said...

I am following you today at Koala Bear's blog. Just wanted you to know the follower replied. :)

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Donald! He is all we need, yet so many do not know Him at all and will lose their eternal soul.
God bless,

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Janis! God bless,

Unknown said...

Thank you for visiting I Love My Post! It's great to connect with you. I look forward to reading more on your blog! Ruth from Captain America & His English Rose This week's co-host!

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Ruth for hosting & for your lovely comment! Come back soon & many blessings to you!

Stampin' VMG206 said...

Laurie ~ this was the most clicked on post at Brag About it last week. I’m Featuring YOU on VMG206 ~ Brag About It Tuesday's Linky Party from last week! We go live Monday at Midnight. So please stop by and grab a Feature Button and Link Up something new.
I have also pinned your project to VMG206’s Brag About It Features Pinterest Board. I can't wait to see what you've been working on this week!
~ Megin of VMG206

Laurie Collett said...

Wow, Virginia -- how exciting! I'm so blessed & honored by the feature! Thanks so much for hosting & for pinning the post on Pinterest! I'll be sure to link up again this week.
May God bless you & your loved ones,

Kathy Penney said...

A symbolic dream and I can definitely relate to the lesson behind it. So often we look for the world to make us happy when that will never fulfill us. Very well written! Thanks for sharing at All Things Pretty!

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks so much, Kathy, for your sweet comment & for hosting! He alone can satisfy!
God bless,

Steve Finnell said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Laurie Collett said...

Hi Steve,

As I said before, I welcome your comments in response to a post, but this is not an appropriate forum to copy and paste your latest blog post. Thanks in advance for understanding why I have therefore deleted your comment.

Peter preached the Gospel of the Kingdom to the Jews (Acts 2:5,14). Only Paul, through Divine revelation from Christ Himself, preached the Gospel of Grace (1 Corinthians 15:1-4; Ephesians 2:8-9), to the Gentiles.

The Gospel of the Kingdom, for the nation of Israel, required faith that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God, Who would establish the Kingdom. Evidence of that faith was turning from sin and being baptized.

The Gospel of Grace, for Gentiles and all who are saved in this Church Age, requires faith in the death, burial and resurrection as the only way to Heaven. We must rightly divide the Word of truth, distinguishing that which is spoken to Israel from that which is spoken to the Church.

Please see my blog post on this topic: