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I'm a passionate writer - and therefore spend most of my time writing thriller novels. But I also live an interesting life in the nations. This blog is here for that aspect of my life - our life - I live with my wonderful wife and two daughters.

I believe in encouragement. I live for obedience. I believe in learning from our experiences, and this blog exists for both of those, and more.

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I was part of the leadership team in St Petersburg, Russia - which planted Hope Church in 2009.(www.hopechurchstpetersburg.com).
In March 2012 Hope Church sent my family to plant into Tallinn, the Capital of Estonia. I therefore lead this small but growing church plant team. Here is the website for Hope Tallinn (www.hopetallinn.ee)

For details on our journey here, read the series called Adventures of Faith which is linked for you on the right hand column, just below. That details our original journey to Russia and then onto Tallinn 4 years later.

Author for fiction novels - Cherry Picking (2012), The Last Prophet (2015), The Tablet (2015) and The Shadow Man (2016) are available on all major bookselling sites. Please visit: www.timheathbooks.com

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

God Speaks - Dreams - Part 1

Welcome to a brand new series that I'm calling "God Speaks..."
Over these next nine entries, I want to look at some of the ways that God speaks to us (it's not an exhaustive list of course - I'm sure others can add to it!).  Because He does speak.  All the time.
Because God is real, because He loves us and because He is good - He speaks.
Usually, it's us (mere people!) that fail to listen or maybe fail to understand that it was God speaking to us.
I want to share from my own life, as practical examples, some of the ways God has spoken to me.  In all, I want to briefly look at these nine ways that we hear from God:

Dreams
Visions & Pictures
Through Others
Angels
Bible
Words
Small Still Voice
Burning Bush
Audible Voice

Personally, I've experienced six out of these nine ways listed - and as we go through the series, I'll make these clear how that happened.  So, here we go!

Part 1 - Dreams

We all dream, I remember being told.  It's only (if you are like me!) that when you sleep soundly, you don't remember them!
And God can speak through dreams.  What I'm not saying is that all dreams are from God.  No - there is a huge difference!  Sometimes it really is that cheese you ate before going to sleep making you dream those strange dreams.  
The Bible tells us in loads of places that God gives people dreams - Joseph is a key character that himself had dreams - both for himself, and also he was able to understand them for others.  I've actually done an entry a few years ago on Joseph and his dreams (a series I've not yet finished, oops!).  You can read that exciting entry here.  Here is a snippet from that entry:

Coming back to the story, when you look at what has happened to Joseph, at the hands of his own brothers, it might lead you to ask the following questions;
Did God abandon him to his dream? As if to say, having revealed something to Joseph, did God stand back and take His hands off the matter?

When God speaks through a dream, I believe you know about it.  It's unmistakeably different.  It might be confusing, at first, but if it's really from God, it'll become clear.  God is the God of clarity, not confusion.  Like Joseph, you might be able to work out the meaning yourself.  Or like Pharaoh, who himself had a troubling dream that he knew he needed to know the meaning of, someone else is able to come and bring that clarity (which was, in that case, also Joseph).
At times, I've prayed for dreams (maybe I should start again).  And God has powerfully, once, spoken to me through a dream.  I had this dream one night in St Petersburg back in December 2011, at a time that I needed real clarity, and first mentioned it here in an update (it's in the paragraph third up from the end).  Here is another snippet:

I was at a window and saw a tornado in the distance going to the right and into a harbour. Then I went back to the window and saw a tornado heading my way, as if to just pass in front, before suddenly I was engulfed in it and the room I was in was just being messed up - I was screaming out but no one could hear me. I was hurting too. After 2 minutes (why this amount I don't know, but it represents a small amount of time with a clear end) it passed and things became calm. I could then get the help I needed.
What this dream fully means, I do not know

This dream had a double meaning and was not fully understood, as I was to find out, until a few months later.  You can read about that here (this entry got the most comments and is currently the third most read blog entry).
The key is, that a 'God-Dream' brings faith and clarity, or revelation and warning, to a situation.  It brings an outcome.  Most dreams are just our mind processing information.  But allow God to speak to you when you are asleep, and anything really is possible.

Acts 2:17
“‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.

This verse reminds us that because God's Spirit has been poured out on all people, one result is that we will 'dream dreams'.  It also mentions visions, and that's the next topic in this series, coming soon.

As we go through the series, if you also have testimony of God speaking to you through a dream or anything else, please feel free to leave a comment and share this with others.

I hope you enjoy this mini adventure through the various ways God Speaks...
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