So, on Saturday night I had a dream like I’ve never had before. I awoke overwhelmed, encouraged and freshly aware of God’s kind sovereignty. Here’s how it went.

God has given me an unusual burden for my friends in Myanmar. I don’t know why, other than to share in their burdens and approach the Throne of Grace asking for help in their time of need. They’ve been on my mind almost constantly since Cyclone Nargis hit 10 days ago.

So, in this dream, I was allowed to travel to Burma to provide needed relief aid to the disaster vicitims. Imagine Hurricaine Katrina hitting an area with wooden houses and sheds. Its no surprise the devastation is great. While there, I was meeting Burmese families who had lost children, wives who lost husbands, men who had no way to provide for the family members that remained.

I met with a Christian lady (still dreaming, remember) who had lost the pastor of her church, her husband and 2 of her three small children. She had no home to return to, no job to work in order to provide the basic necessities for her small boy and no available medical care. From a worldly perspective, this dear child of God had no hope.

As I handed her a cup of water, she looked at me with tears in her eyes and told me how grateful she was. I asked her why. “How can you be grateful? You’ve just lost everything.”

With tears streaming down her dirty, weathered face, she looked at me and said (through a translator) that her husband, 2 children and her pastor were now in the presence of Jesus. How her tear-filled eyes rejoiced! She missed them. Her heart ached for the small comforts she had only 11 days ago (though I would have, in my western-worldview not seen even that as “comfort”). But she smiled. She had hope amidst a hopeless situation.

She rejoiced in her trial because her almighty Sovereign God had planned that cyclone to obliterate her town. He knew it was coming long before she did. He knew, before she was ever born that on May the 2nd, 2008, her world would change forever. But this God, who is all-powerful loved her. He, who controls the winds and waves, cared for her soul enough to open her eyes to the love of Jesus. She, my nameless friend from a dream, rejoiced because, though she was born Buddhist, was told of Jesus several years ago. And He became beautiful to her. He brought hope to her war-ravaged world.

I wanted to hug her, but the culture there is not as personal and open to feeling as mine is and I did not want to offend her. So instead, I told her that I had been praying for them. I then asked how I could pray specifically for her.

She wanted me to know that she was blessed – that she had already been given everything. She wanted me to pray for her friends that didn’t have this same hope. She wanted me to pray that her faith in her sovereign, loving Jesus would grow through this “light and temporary affliction.” She wanted me to share that blessing with others that I knew too.

Then I woke up.

When I got to church a few hours later (I had the dream Saturday night), we prayed during worship for the folks in Burma. God reminded me at that point, that we were corporately offering up a sweet smelling offering to our God that controls the waves. Through Jesus, our feeble prayers and humble songs were a beautiful sight and smell before the Throne of Grace.

The worship set was in many senses a disaster – the sound equipment didn’t work at all; half the band couldn’t play as a result. It was from a musical standpoint very amateur. But what a reminder – Jesus took those feeble attempts and perfected that worship. When it arrived before the Throne, the Almighty Commander of the Waves received the sweet gift of a beautiful symphony of praise. As we were more aware of our weakness, He became yet again greater to me.

Worship yesterday was powerful. It was as if the roof was lifted and I could see Jesus handing God the Father a beautiful package of us simultaneously acknowledging our neediness and His all-encompassing greatness.
I often forget that transaction that takes place at my church at 10 AM each Sunday morning.

One day, we’ll all be standing together before that throne, singing in every language, rejoicing with praise alongside that pastor and husband and those 2 children that died 10 days ago in the cyclone.
I‘ll stand next to my friend from Burma whom I’ve never met, with hands held high, in complete thankfulness to the One who created each trial in our lives. I’ll rejoice, as I see face to face, the One who not only planned, but also accompanied me through each trial.

3 responses »

  1. Very cool dream…

    Oh and just so you know, nothing was wrong with the sound system. There were problems with the trailer hitch and the trailer (with the sound equipment) didn’t arrive until it was too late to set up the system. :-) Fun times!

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