Saturday, February 21, 2015

Three Dolphins

Photo by Nevil Dimins 2005

In this dream I am at a dance audition held in a studio at the beach. As I watch the choreographed combination each of us will have to perform for the judges, I feel confident that I will be able to dance the steps with ease and grace. But when it is my turn to take the floor, I can barely move and I almost fall over because I am wearing a bulky winter jacket and coat and heavy street shoes.

I ask the director if I can remove these, and she says yes, but that I’ll have to leave them outside on the beach because there is no room in the studio.

When I reach the sand dunes and hear the pounding surf, I am reluctant to set my extra clothes and shoes down on the beach, wondering if they’ll be safe. Will they wash away, or will someone take them? But finally I remove my winter gear, and I feel a great sense of freedom as the waves lap at my feet and the ocean breeze ruffles my hair.

As I look out at the waves, I am thrilled to see three dolphins swim by, parallel to the shore. I glimpse the first leaping from the water then diving back in, just long enough for me to appreciate his beauty and vitality. The second is invisible, not emerging from the sea, but I can tell from currents on the water’s surface that he is there.

The third dolphin is a fantastical creature, much larger and more powerful than the first. As he flies out of the ocean and hovers over the waves, I can see his elaborately developed and ornate fins gleaming on his silvery body. One brilliant gold, fan-shaped fin on his back is like that of a sailfish; several fins crown his head; and a long sword-like bill protruding from his mouth resembles that of a swordfish.

This vision of the dolphins fills me to overflowing with unspeakable joy. With no fear I leave my excess garments on the beach and run off to tell the others what I have seen. But back in the studio, everyone is preoccupied with the audition and no one listens to me. Some clearly just don’t care; some politely brush me off; and a few are rude and even hostile as they order me out. So I leave, with great sadness that no one would be able to see the majestic dolphins or to experience the joy they brought me.

As I awaken, I think of the burdens, sins and weights that encumber me as I try in my own strength to run the race He has set before me (Hebrews 12:1; 1 Corinthians 9:24). Why do I so foolishly cling to these, instead of laying them down at the foot of His cross (1 Peter 5:7; Matthew 11:28) where I can exchange my burdens for His blessings? The dance of life is effortless in His grace when I follow His lead, but when I rely on my own flesh, I can barely move.

Jesus Christ is the Living Water, our endless Source of energy, freedom, and cleansing (Song of Solomon 4:15; Jeremiah 2:13; 17:13; John 4:10; Revelation 7:17). His shed blood washes away our sins and carries away our excess baggage, just as the tides faithfully empower the waves to clear out debris left on the shore (Revelation 1:5).

The first dolphin represents Jesus the Son, come to earth in the flesh (John 1:14) to be the perfect sacrifice for our sins (Romans 3:25; 1 John 2:2; 4:10). The second, unseen dolphin symbolizes the Holy Spirit, sent by Jesus Christ to live within the heart of every believer (2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 1:13; 4:30), invisible like the wind except in the effects He has through His great power (John 3:8).

And the third glorious creature reminds me of Christ Who will come again, wearing His crowns (Revelation 19:12) as King of Kings and Lord of Lords (1 Timothy 6:15; Revelation 17:14; 19:16) and carrying His fan of judgment (Matthew 3:12; Luke 3:17). His victorious Word will proceed from His mouth (Revelation 19:15,21), sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12), to defeat the enemies of Israel, Satan, sin and death (Revelation 19:15-21).

Once we believe that Jesus died to pay our sin debt, was buried, and rose again on the third day (1 Corinthians 15:1-4), and recognize Him as our personal Lord and Savior, His Holy Spirit enters our hearts and lives there (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) until we go home to be with Him. In the meantime, we have the glorious, blessed hope of His second coming (Titus 2:13), when we will accompany Him as armies led by our King of Kings (Revelation 19:14).

What an amazing message that anyone who is born again (John 3:3-8) should want to shout from the rooftops to all who will listen! The Bible shows us many examples of those who were saved and immediately left what they were doing to proclaim the Good News to everyone, including the shepherds (Luke 2:17-18), the woman at the well (John 4:28-29), and the apostle Andrew (John 1:40-42). Many of us, in the excitement of being newly saved, did the same.

But sadly, many to whom we witness are apathetic, polite but unconvinced, or even aggressive in response to our testimony. Sadder still, that response may quench our fire to tell others the life-saving, destiny-changing Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Thankfully, our mission is not to save or even to convert anyone, for only the Holy Spirit can do that. Our mission is to sow the seed of God’s Word and our story of how He changed us forever (2 Corinthians 5:17). We may think our sowing is bearing no fruit, but there may be many whose heart is softened by our words and deeds, later becoming receptive to accepting Christ (Matthew 13:3-23).

For the most part, we won’t know of these until we reach glory, but what a joy it will be to meet them and realize we played a part in their being in Heaven! And I believe Jesus Christ will reward us for all good words spoken on His behalf, whether or not they reach fertile soil (Matthew 25:21, 23).

May we not grow weary in spreading the Good News, regardless of what reaction we encounter! In the right season we will reap our harvest (Galatians 6:9; 2 Thessalonians 3:13), for God notices and will reward our labor!  

© 2015 Laurie Collett
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Frank E. Blasi said...

Dear Laurie,
When I read the story of the three passing dolphins, I thought, "Yep, perfect picture here of the Trinity - the first being the Son, the second the Holy Spirit (invisible, but able to see his effects) and God the Father enthroned."
But the correct interpretation you gave is what God himself has revealed to you.
I find it very intriguing in reading how god speaks to you through dreams, and how it all makes sense afterwards.
As for evangelism, there was a time when I had a greater fire within me to tell others about Jesus (and a few might have come to the Lord through this) but in the majority of occasions I have been outwitted by the unbeliever's arguments, and walked away with my head hanging low.
That is why I much prefer to communicate via blogging. Like this I always try to include the Gospel, which is read by anyone around the world who bothers to click on to the page.
God bless.

Mary said...

You beautifully paint word pictures for all but you always come back to God's Word and how it relates. That is my favorite part. These words really hit home:"Our mission is to sow the seed of God’s Word and our story of how He changed us forever". May we all feel the strength to share His word with all. Blessings!

cairncottage said...

God uses dreams, among other avenues, to speak to us to help us learn and gain wisdom. This story reminds me of some of the parables Jesus used to speak to His people. Thanks for sharing
Ann @ Christ in the Clouds

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Frank,
Not surprisingly, given my fascination with the Trinity, my first thought regarding the interpretation of the dream was that the three dolphins were the three persons of the Trinity. But upon further reflection, I realized that the third dolphin was Christ in His second coming as King of Kings.
Like you, I feel that blogging (and email and Facebook to a lesser extent) are effective ways to spread the Gospel. We are blessed to be living in the End Times, when "knowledge shall increase, and men shall run to and fro" (I have read that the Hebrew word in that verse is similar to the modern word connoting the search capability and power of the Internet). True, like any other tool, the Internet can be used for evil, but we are blessed to be able to use it to share the Gospel. Like you, I try to incorporate the Gospel into every post, and also into every Bible study lesson I teach. Our first pastor when we were saved always preached the Gospel in every message and every blog post, and he was a great role model in so many ways.
God bless,

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Mary,
I am blessed and encouraged by your lovely comment. May He give us boldness and wisdom to share the Gospel with all in our sphere of influence.
Love in Christ,

Laurie Collett said...

Praise God that He speaks to His children through His Word and in other ways -- dreams, nature, Godly counsel, confirmation in a devotional or sermon, etc. I am so blessed by your very kind and uplifting words!
May you have a blessed week in Him,

Nannette said...

May we not grow weary in spreading the Good News. Amen! Blessings to you for visiting me so I could read this great post. ♥

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks, Nannette, for your visit & lovely comment! So glad you enjoyed the post!
Many blessings,

Cheryl said...

Beautiful words, dear friend! I loved what you said about when we witness to someone and it appears that they are not receptive, but their hearts are softened by our words. It made me think of how Paul said he planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. Every witnessing Christian God brings into an unbeliever's life has an impact on them, even though sometimes it looks like it is having no effect at all. Your words also made me think of the song, "Faces" by Greater Vision. This song comforts me so much when I feel that my labors for God have all been in vain, when I look around and don't see the results I so hoped you said, we may never know in this life, but eternity will reveal the impact we have made. Here is a link to that song, in case you haven't heard it and care to listen to it. Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving such sweet encouragement on my blog. God bless you!

a joyful noise said...

Thank you Laurie for your beautiful story of your dream and how you interpret it. God has many ways for us to testify of His grace, and blogging, even Face Book can be one of those ways. Those who volunteer in their church as testifying too, sometimes silently as children and others behold our smiling faces. Those who teach are powerful shaper of lives to encourage and challenge believers to hold fast and never give up. Thank you for sharing with us here at Tell me a Story.

Donald Fishgrab said...

A powerful message, Laurie.

It so clearly illustrates a point so many have missed, that our job is to tell, but it is up to the hearers and God whether they believe.

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Cheryl,
What a beautiful song! Thanks for sharing the link, as I hadn't heard the song before.Praise God that He tells us not to be weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not! What a joy it will be in glory to meet all those who were saved and whom we encouraged in some way to follow Him! Thank you so much for your encouraging comment. May you have a blessed week in Him!

Laurie Collett said...

Thank you, Hazel, for your uplifting comment and for hosting! It is so true that each of us can testify in so many different ways, using whatever talents, gifts and opportunities God has given us to spread His Word! I think of a dear man in our former church, who was in a terrible accident and can no longer speak, yet his faithful attendance in church and encouraging smiles spoke volumes.
Love in Christ,

Laurie Collett said...

Thanks so much, Donald! Praise God that He does not demand success from our witness, only obedience and faithfulness. Only the Holy Spirit can win souls to Christ.
God bless,

Saleslady371 said...

Hi, Laurie:
I love to dream and it's so neat to read yours with interpretation! Evangelism is a lifestyle and I connect with your passion and feel hopeful that for those in my life who are closed to the gospel, that they will get revelation as only the Holy Spirit can give. Maybe it will happen today.

Brenda said...

Lovely post Laurie,
and I have to say that spreading the gospel in the streets is the love of my life, and the love of my friend's life too. There is no way we could have done this from the start in our own strength, and many of the people we meet in the street are truly looking for the Saviour, they just do not know He is there and how wonderful He really is. I thank God that I have experienced the life style of many of the people that we meet before I came to Christ, so too has my friend (although different from mine). Otherwise, without empathy I would maybe have no sympathy. Let us follow the Lord where ever He leads us, and do whatever He calls us to do.
God bless Laurie.

Laurie Collett said...

Praise God for the Holy Spirit giving you faith, wisdom and boldness to witness! You are so right -- one of the purposes of trials is to give us empathy so that we can better comfort and counsel those going through similar trials. Every step of our journey, even before salvation, has been to empower us to fulfill His mission, and He uses where we have been to draw others closer to Him.
Many blessings to you,

Laurie Collett said...

Amen! May we continue to pray fervently for our family and loved ones who do not yet know Him, and may the Spirit give us boldness and wisdom to help soften their hearts to the Gospel.
I'm blessed to hear that you enjoyed this post about my dream and its interpretation -- thanks so much for your lovely comment!
Love in Christ,

Lux G. said...

Oh, how you vividly describe the story I feel like I was there too. Blessings! Have a great week ahead!

BARBIE said...

Laurie, you are a bright light and I love how you continue to press forward to share God's words with others. Thank you for sharing the dream and interpretation with us. Blessings!

Laurie Collett said...

Thank you, SuperLux, for your sweet comment! I'm so glad you enjoyed the story.
God bless,

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Barbie,
Your kind words are a great encouragement to me -- you are a blessing! Thank you for your lovely comment and for hosting.
May you have a blessed week in Him,