Updated: Feb 11
A recent series of dreams highlighted the same theme in different ways. One dream involved a rescue mission where Special Forces soldiers had come to extract a group of people gathered in a large house. The extraction had already started when one woman suddenly realized a huge problem. It was likely very obvious to everyone else. Still, no one had mentioned it to her.
The layered dress she was wearing included a large hoopskirt, and there was no way the hoopskirt would fit through the hole cut into the roof. She quickly ran to another room to change into something more suitable for the mission at hand.
Her intentions were good. She lifted all the layers of fabric over her head to slip out of the dress more quickly. However, tight layers bound by rows and rows of buttons entangled her in a prison of unyielding fabrics. Nothing was budging.
Though their initial plan was to rescue everyone, the extraction team was forced to leave the woman behind. Does this seem harsh? It was her own unpreparedness which prevented her from moving forward.
While they went away to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast, and the door was shut. Afterward the other virgins also came, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us.’ But he answered, ‘Most certainly I tell you, I don’t know you.’ Watch therefore, for you don’t know the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming. (Matthew 25:10-13 WEB)
“Be prepared for action at a moment’s notice. Be like servants anticipating their master’s return from a wedding celebration. They are ready at a moment’s notice to unlock and open the door for him. What great joy is ahead for those who stay awake and wait for their Master’s return! He himself will become their servant and wait on them. He may appear at midnight or even later, but what great joy for the awakened ones whenever he comes!” (Luke 12:35-38 TPT)
A sudden transition had caught the woman off guard. The time of change had come, but she had failed to acknowledge it. Big dresses with hoopskirts and fancy buttons are beautiful and serve a specific purpose. Why had she failed to recognize the shift in the atmosphere? Why was she still in party-mode, when clearly, this was a matter of life and death? Darkness had set in, and the enemy was drawing near. Her inability to move forward was a significant loss to the group.
God equips each of us in unique ways, according to His plans and purposes- and not for our own entertainment. Our gifts benefit others. Others are counting on us to know our roles and nurture and grow in our gifts for the benefit of the people, places, and things around us.
The eye can’t tell the hand, “I have no need for you,” or again the head to the feet, “I have no need for you.” No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. Those parts of the body which we think to be less honorable, on those we bestow more abundant honor; and our unpresentable parts have more abundant propriety; whereas our presentable parts have no such need. But God composed the body together, giving more abundant honor to the inferior part, that there should be no division in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. When one member suffers, all the members suffer with it. When one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. (1 Corinthians 12:21-26 WEB)
Any temptation you face will be nothing new. But God is faithful, and He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can handle. But He always provides a way of escape so that you will be able to endure and keep moving forward. (1 Corinthians 10:13 VOICE)
“It was just the same in the days of Lot. They were eating, drinking, buying, selling, planting, building. But on the day Lot left Sodom, it rained fire and sulfur from heaven and destroyed them all. Things will be the same on the day when the Son of Man is made fully known. In that day, the one who is on the roof, and his possessions in the house, must not go down to take them away. In the same way, the one who is in the field must not turn back. Remember Lot’s wife! Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life will preserve it. “I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed. One will be taken along and the other left." (Luke 17:28-34 TLV)
Perhaps “being prepared” looks a little different for each of us. Today, in your time of journaling and sitting with the Lord, I encourage you to ask these questions:
“Lord, what is it I’m not prepared for?”
“How would You have me prepare?”
“Lord, what are the things in my life distracting me from You?”
“What are the gifts You have entrusted to me that I have failed to open or nurture?”
“Is there something I should stop (or start) doing?”
“What is one thing You would have me to do today to prepare for Your return?”
Journaling our dreams, visions, encounters, and conversations with the Lord is one way we steward His gifts. It's also a great way to exercise our spiritual senses and grow in the gift of discerning of spirits.