The other night, I had an interesting dream. When I woke up, I felt a little cloudy trying to figure out what it all meant. First, I was at a wedding. But the wedding did not feel like a celebration at all. It was completely deprived of any trace of joy or cheer. There was very faint classical music playing in the background that you could barely hear, amplifying the ear-piercing clanking of glasses and silver. But the clanking was not from that of toasts or cheers. As a matter of fact, when I looked down at the tables, the glasses were empty and the plates displayed half eaten bread crusts. There were some sporadic glasses that were half empty with wine. The guests were dressed in dark colors, walking around in what seemed like a daze. No one was dancing. Their faces bore expressions of emptiness and misery. I don’t even think the bride ever made an entrance and no one seemed to wonder where she was. There wasn’t enough of anything and the guests were gravely aware and affected by the lack of wine and bread.
Then, I was in a house. There were 5 young children there. The house had one small bedroom, an attic and a tiny kitchen. Only one small dresser stood in a bedroom, which didn’t provide enough drawers or space for the children’s things. But strangely, the drawers were empty, they had nothing to put in the drawers. They all shared one bed. As I looked around, I felt sad and even a little angry at the injustice done to these innocent brothers and sisters. Downstairs in the kitchen, was a table with bread crumbs and empty glasses. Some were partly full of wine. But the children were all laughing and playing and jumping on the bed together. It seemed they weren’t even aware of all that was missing around them.
As I wrote out this dream, I asked God to show me what he wanted me to understand. As I reached for my bible, the verse Psalm 4 flashed across my mind and I quickly flipped to it. This verse was hi-lighted: “Who can show us any good? Let the light of your face shine upon us, O Lord. You have filled my heart with greater joy than when there is wine and grain abound.” I realized that as a new wife, I had been focusing on making sure we had enough of everything to store our things, like a new book case and a dresser. But even after we got the dresser and had what we needed, I wasn’t satisfied. There was still not enough space.
The wedding was full of adults surrounded by a room indigent of enough wine or bread, and they were miserable and void of joy because of this. But at the house, the children also did not have enough wine, bread or even beds. Yet they were exploding with joy, jumping on the one bed they shared and were spilling over in uncontrollable laughter. The adults relied on their circumstances to determine their joy, but the children were dependent on love.
There is a reason why scripture says, “Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” Matthew 18:3. The Kingdom of Heaven does mean entrance into eternal heaven. It means having access to a life and a whole different set of gifts that fill you with hope, joy and peace. Living a life of the kingdom is different than living one of this world.
Children do not pay attention to material things or what seems to be missing. They pay attention to the emotion of love. God was reminding me in my dream to not place so much weight in having the things of this world and having perfect circumstances in order to be happy. He is asking me, even pleading with me to look to Him, the King of the Heavens and the Earth to fill my cup with joy. Only He can lead me to consistent, deep genuine joy. And he promises that His joy will fill my heart more greatly, than even when money, possessions, plans, work and my marriage is bountifully falling into place. Circumstances will always waver and fail me, but God never will.
“Seek first the Kingdom and all things will be added to you.” What is your source of joy?