Nick bought us a new mattress for the new year and boy, was it time. We can't figure out how long we'd had our old one, but we were definitely overdue for a new one. Our backs are feeling better already, we're sleeping super deeply, but I've notice an obnoxious byproduct of the deep sleep: freakishly intense dreams.
I just woke up from one and want to capture what happened in my heart as I processed that bad boy.
First, I should say - I'm not immune to being-chased-by-bad-guy-dreams. I feel like they show up pretty often and my dream subconscious and my everyday mind are in agreement about one thing: being nice to bad guys is the way to go. I'm not sure when or if I ever made this decision, but I've always thought that if I was captured in some way or being attacked - I'd just be VERY, very kind. Just typing that out, I realize how stupid it sounds, but in my mind it's always seemed like the best way to stay safe. Be really nice and compliant with a bad guy, maybe it will end well for you.
Last night I was having a pretty similar we're-being-chased-by-bad-guys dream, but there was a twist. Nick and I were running from some unsavory individuals, but it was most definitely our fault. We were running from the police AND the bad guys, and I'm not sure what we'd done, but we'd done something we were ashamed of and we didn't feel like we could stay in the same spot. In my dream, the inevitable happened and the bad guys caught up with us - in a seedy motel where we were hiding. The dream unraveled like usual, I was being really nice to our assailants - totally complaint. Not putting up a fight.
And then something crazy happened. I asked kindly to be allowed to go to the bathroom and I was shocked to find that my dream-self had a plan. I quietly removed the grate on the air conditioning vent and shoved my self through to freedom - knowing that I was heading straight to the police to turn myself in and get help for Nick. The second my feet hit the ground on the other side, I knew I was free and safe, and I immediately woke up.
It might sound silly, but I laid in bed silently for like 5 minutes in shock. Who was this brave girl I met in my dream? Why did she deviate from the plan? What did this mean? And I felt the Lord stir up this answer in my heart:
It really doesn't matter if you're at fault or if you're totally innocent. If you're under attack or being pursued by the enemy, being compliant is not the way to win. Being the kind of gal who pops through the air conditioning vent is as easy as it seems, but deciding that you're going to fight is the hardest part.
So here's what I know: you're not totally innocent and Lord knows I'm not either. We've made missteps and we have bad motives in our heart. If we're in Christ, there's also a lot of good and redeemed and grace - but it's not all tidy in there; for you or for me. Here's what else I know: you're under attack. Currently. There is an enemy of your soul that is using weapons of spiritual warfare against you, to fight against the light that dwells inside, literally right now.
And maybe you're like me and subconsciously or super consciously, you've decided to quietly just keep going the way you're going and stay inside the lines and be polite in the face of evil. Maybe you see those past sins and you don't feel quite worthy to reach out for help or maybe you're scared of repenting, scared of coming clean about where you need some work too.
But escape is RIGHT there and safety is on the other side of the air conditioning vent. You ARE strong enough to lift yourself there and I promise you'll fit. I know, because Christ died on the cross for OUR sins, that we might have a way back to safety. I know because He's the pursuer of our souls, and He's not hunting us down to lock us up - He's hunting us down to bring us to abundance. I know because He already conquered the bad guys, and they're just as scared of His victory as we can be of them - even more, in fact.
I want to be the kind of gal who climbs through the air conditioning vent, for my own sake, but for the sake of others too. So in Jesus' name, let's go? Let's fight. Let's not drift quietly away with our assailants, but fight back strategically and passionately with the full knowledge that the battle is already won.