Chronicles of a Dominican Republic Missions Trip – Living in Dreams and Nightmares

I wake from a dream.  A bad dream.  A nightmare actually.

I wake up repeating the names of Jesus over and over and over.

I rouse my husband to pray for us, for our boys, for our house.

To pray for protection from all that is not from God.

The sheets are damp from Josh’s sweat.  Night sweats plague him once in a while.  Only when he’s breaking a fever or when something is threatening to break him.  I know he doesn’t have a fever.  And I know what’s threatening his soul, his heart, his mind.  It’s the same nightmare that threatens to break me.

It’s a nightmare of oppression.  A nightmare of people under the thumb of poverty, sickness, desperation and hopelessness. 

The landscape of the nightmare looks like crumbling buildings, scattered rubble, abandoned projects, work undone.  Vacant spaces and vacant stares from the people who inhabit this place.  Some huddle together around fires.  Sparks of light and warmth in a dark place.

The nightmare is full of darkness.  I begin to realize just how much darkness lies beyond the reach of my sight.

This is when I start to recite the names of Jesus.  As I sleep I call to Him in the darkness. 

Someone is leading me through the nightmare.  I notice a light.  Is my guide carrying a candle?  A flashlight?  Am I carrying a candle or flashlight?

No.  The light surrounds ME.  I am the source of the light.  Each name of Jesus I speak in this place makes the light a little brighter.

Jesus, Son of God, Saviour, Messiah.  King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Redeemer, Emmanuel.  Peace settles with every utterance of Him.

My guide takes me into one of the buildings.  Leads me down some stairs.  Down, down, further down.  A shimmering pool of water waits at the bottom.  The water is brilliant green.  It looks so clear and inviting.  So healing and renewing.  So refreshing.  I want to dive right in. 

My guide tries to tell me about what’s in the water.  The people think a person lives in the water.  They are afraid.  They do not know what to do.  They are asking for my help. 

Suddenly a hand reaches up from the water. 

My guide runs.

I wake.  And rouse my husband to pray.

I awoke from the nightmare and realized it is I who lives in a dream.  The blessings in my life are full of Jesus’ light, love and hope.

There are many in this world who live in the nightmare. 

But there is hope.  Never forget the hope.  Never let the people in the nightmare forget the hope.  Hope is for them just as much as it is for me.

Just as the hand reaches out from a cool, shimmering, brilliant pool of clear water – so my hand will reach out as He calls.

My hands are His hands.  His hands are my hands.

Speaking His name brings light to the darkest nightmares.

Alone I can extend His hand to a few, together we can extend His hand to the world.

One day the nightmare will become the dream, and the dream will become real life.  For all of us.

Thank You Jesus.


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