|C. Christianson: Lehi's Dream|
1 Nephi 8:2; 10;12-182 And it came to pass that while my father tarried in the wilderness, he spoke unto us saying: Behold I have dreamed a dream; or in other words, I have seen a vision
10 And it came to pass that I beheld a tree whose fruit was desirable to make one happy
12 And as I partook of the fruit thereof, it filled my soul with exceedingly great joy, wherefore I began to be desirous that my family should partake of it also; for I knew that it was desirable above all other fruit.
13 And as I cast my eyes round about, that perhaps I might discover my family also, I beheld a river of water; and it ran along, and it was near the tree of which I was partaking the fruit.
14 And I looked to behold from whence it came; and I saw the head there of a little way off; and the head thereof I beheld your mother Sariah, and Sam and Nephi and they stood as if they knew not whither they should go.
15 And it came to pass that I beckoned unto them; and I also did say unto them with a loud voice that they should come unto me and partake of the fruit, which was desirable above all other fruit.
16 And it came to pass that they did come unto me and partake of the fruit also.
17 And it came to pass that I was desirous that Laman and Lemuel should come and partake of the fruit also; wherefore, I cast mine eyes towards the head of the river, that perhaps I might see them.
18 And it came to pass that I saw them, but they would not come unto me and partake of the fruit.
It has occurred to me, that Lehi’s dream, for all of its symbolism, is really about a father wanting what was best for his family. Lehi’s dream was grounded in the reality of their present situation. The worries and fears that Lehi had as a father and husband were manifested in his actions in his dream. Have we all experienced this “dream” for family?
So, I have dreams, but I really don’t like to dream when I sleep. I would prefer just to “pass out” into a deep and dreamless sleep and wake up refreshed. But for all of my life, that doesn’t happen too often. I am not an insomniac, just the opposite. My husband is jealous because I can sleep just about anywhere, in almost any condition, except when I dream. And when I dream, I am trying desperately to “wake up” , but some dreams are not just dreams, but “a conversation, or an opportunity to see a situation” behind the scenes”. I don’t think that dreams are purely our subconscious mind trying to “replay” our day. I know from past experience that a dream can pull on what is available, but can also come completely out of left field.
When I was a kid, I had terrible nightmares, mostly because I had a hyper active imagination. I had a love/hate relationship with scary stories and vampires and ghosts and goblins. I also had a deep and abiding phobia of hospitals, which still exists today, even though I have tried to cure it by working in hospitals as my life’s vocation. So one dream always started in a surgical setting; usually it involved my mom (who was sick a lot when I was young), coming out of surgery on a gurney with the flying monkey’s and witches from “The Wizard of OZ”. To this day, I will not watch the Wizard of OZ, seriously. I tend to sleep with a night light, even now.
So, when my dad died about 16 years ago, I started to have a series of dreams about my younger brother.
When my brother was born, I remember my mom coming home from the hospital with him. He was all bundled up and sleeping and cute. So my mom officially “gave” him to me. He was my baby brother and I must take care of him all of his life. So I sealed that promise with a chocolate kiss (I was eating a yummy chocolate cake with grandma at the time).
In my first dream about my brother, we are always in an open setting, usually in a park where there were lots of people. Sometimes the dream is happening during a flea market or craft show. My dream began when we would start to leave. My dad and my brother would walk with me to the edge of a side-walk where the curb met the road. My brother would morph into a younger version of himself, instead of the adult he is. He would stop and wave good bye to us and turn around and walk off in another direction. I would call for him to come back with me and dad, but he wasn’t able to “cross” the street. My dad also would stop at the curb, and leave in a different direction also.
The second dream would find us in a different place. We were in the town where my grandparents had lived, and we had visited there many times as kids. My brother and I were standing in front of a house, and he was now appearing as a young adult. In my dream I seemed to be trying to convince him to come back with me, he always seemed to be running away and lost. In this dream, all of a sudden a school bus stopped in front of us and the door opened and my dad was driving. We both got on the bus, and later my dad would put me off at a corner. He said that he was only taking my brother with him. I asked my dad, what was I going to do? He said “You will be alright, but someone has to take care of him (meaning my brother)).
The third dream seemed to happen in “real time”. I was driving down a favorite street and I stopped at a light, and as I looked to the right, the road “opened up” to me and I was invited to drive through. In the dream I drove down a tree lined path; the weather changed to a beautiful fall day with all the trimmings. I got out of my car and walked up to a large tree that got larger and morphed into a door that opened into a room. The room seemed like a tavern, and there were a few people there, who all seemed to be waiting. So I saw my brother, and he was now an adult. I only remember talking to him and encouraging him to “come with me” because I knew in my heart that if he did, he would be happy and safe. This time he agreed and wanted to leave with me. So we walked out of the room and almost to my car, and he stopped and sat on a bench. He could not leave because he had no shoes. In the dream I started to look for his shoes but couldn’t find them. I had to leave, I saw my brother sitting on a bench, dressed in a suit and coat, but no shoes. So he waved goodbye, but he said he would work on getting some shoes.
All of God's children need traveling shoes.....