Recently, I was talking with a friend and trying to describe the importance and validity of dreams as God’s means of communicating with us. She didn’t know that God spoke in dreams but she had an interest in how Daniel and Joseph could interpret them.
I had the impression that my friend had never been told that God speaks to us in these same parabolic metaphors today just like He did in the Bible. One of the things that seemed to pique my friend’s interest was in the idea that God gives us directions, instructions and wisdom for all life issues in dreams.
Based on that conversation, I realized that I needed to cover the subject of life calling dreams since this is the most profound type we can get and gives us clues to determining what God’s ultimate plan and purpose is for our life.
Biblical Case: Joseph
As I usually do, I’m going to start with the Bible and show the precedent we’ve been given concerning life calling dreams. Let’s go all the way back to Genesis 37 and see what the first “dreamer of dreams” was told as a young kid. If you’re not familiar with the story I’m referring to here, go to that chapter there and start reading. You’ll only have to read the first eleven verses to see what I’m going to highlight here.
Joseph was given two separate dreams that indicated something about his life calling. One was about sheaves of wheat and the other was about the sun, moon and stars. None of these were really all that straightforward in helping Joseph figure out what his calling was. Just like I’ve been saying in most of my articles here, Joseph’s dreams were very highly symbolic and lacked clear specific details.
What he saw however, would have provoked many questions. To see your family bowing down to you would eventually have to raise questions like, “why would they do that?“, “what circumstances would have to take place to cause that to happen?“, and “when is this going to happen?” The longer the time that passed since the dreams, the more questions this would undoubtedly provoke.
Joseph wasn’t told in his dreams that he would be the #2 guy in Egypt holding a governmental office. He just knew that his family would bow down to him at some point. What he saw in his dreams could all have happened in any number of ways. Here are some key takeaways from his dreams:
- Nothing in those dreams pointed to living in Egypt.
- Nothing revealed what would lead to his family bowing to him.
- Nothing showed him being sold into slavery and spending two years in prison.
Here’s another really big key: Joseph was the guy who got those dreams at night but his life calling was to impact millions of people. Everything that happened between age 17 and 30 was to make him ready for the calling God had in store for him. Regardless of what your own life calling is, it will not just be about you and your own personal accomplishments; it will affect the lives of many around you.
Modern Day Examples: Mine!
I’m going to give my own examples here because you can see the parallels between Joseph’s dreams and mine. Pay close attention – what you see here will be a pattern that applies to your own life calling dreams also. No worries if you miss anything, I’ll summarize the main keys at the end.
On Sept 23, 2014, I had a dream of a 1,000 foot tall palm tree in the backyard of the house I grew up in. At first I had no clue what kind of tree it was or why I was seeing this strange sight! I called it a “sign and wonder” because, to see such a huge tree towering above all the others was just very unusual.
It was not until several weeks later that I heard a preacher on YouTube giving a message about palm trees. I had never before considered the characteristics he was describing and it shocked me to realize this was the type of tree I saw in my dream. The palm tree was therefore a dual symbol of height plus the elliptical reference to storms.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”
(Jeremiah 1:5 NKJV)
The preacher said that palm trees are the only kind that can withstand the force of a hurricane. In dream symbology, a storm is usually symbolic of going through very rough life circumstances. The bigger the storm in the dream, the bigger the “personal storm” you may go through. But in dream symbols, trees can also indicate leadership, especially when they are very tall. The fact this tree was in the backyard of the house I grew up in indicates God created me to be this type of person long before I was ever born.
In the spring of 2014, I had a dream where I saw a huge jumbo jet making a low flyover from back to front of the house I grew up in. As the jet came overhead, I first saw two huge under-wing engines, then I saw a zoomed in shot of another huge engine directly under the centerline of the jet; then as it passed by, I saw two more engines in a large tail-wing section. This was a total of five engines.
I knew by a thought impression that this was a very high-tech jet, something like NASA space-age technology. There were only four crew members and I saw a profile shot of one of them. He was an older man, very calm, very wise and confident, seeming like he had everything perfectly under control. This was a most amazing sight!
The symbols in the dream indicate many things including being part of an organization with a global reach (jumbo jet), the use of advanced technology, prosperity from the association of multiple sources (five as a symbol of abundance) and a potential involvement of creativity (four). This dream also revealed that God had a plan for me from way before I was born; the jet appearing from behind the house again revealed this.
Here are some keys to summarize what these two dreams indicate:
- Global outreach and influence
- The use of technology and business
- Prosperity in many aspects
- Ability to withstand significant personal storms
These are my initial list based on what I have understood as of this time. Since these are still looking forward in the future to events that have not yet fully transpired, a few details are subject to additional elaboration. As with most dreams, as time goes on, we get more and more understanding like the peeling back of layers of an onion.
What you see here are clues and patterns that you can use to discern things in advance about your own personal calling. You may not yet know much about what your calling is but, if you are paying attention to your dreams, and asking God to speak to you in this way, you will start seeing the clues begin to arrive.
It is hard enough to find your direction in life. Why on earth would you ever want to do it on your own apart from God’s guidance?! If you are going in the wrong direction and strongly feel the need to discover your highest purpose here in life – take this article seriously. This is the Biblical pattern and I’ve shown you it has played out in my own life. In a future article, I hope to share a few personal testimonies of those who have contacted me and I’ll show you the same pattern with theirs.
Here are some main keys to discovering your life calling in your dreams:
- Always write down your dreams and include the date; you will need to be able to go back and review them at a later date.
- Study Bible-based metaphoric symbols so you can discern the main themes that appear in your own dreams.
- Look for themes and symbols that point to something that doesn’t look like it will happen tomorrow, but may take a while to accomplish.
- Look for scenes that show you doing things that you have never done and may seem beyond your current abilities.
- Look for themes that indicate your own personal traits and characteristics and would apply to an entire career length (eg: leadership, speaking, writing, traveling, etc).
- Then start asking questions and look for clues in your life that start to line up with what you discerned from all the above.
- Ask God what steps you need to take to reach the highest purpose and plans He has for your life.
- As always, contact me if you would like me to interpret your dreams, I try to reply within a couple days on average.