I had an overly vivid dream last night that my son Josiah was kidnapped right before my eyes. I tried desperately to save him but his I was unable to. As I was staring out of a window watching my son being carried away I could see the look in the eyes of this man and I knew what he was going to do. Terrible things. Things for which my son would never recover if he live through the experience. I awoke with a scream and I was shaking all over. I even got up to check on my kids to make sure they were ok. Everything in this dream was so real that I was having a hard time shaking off the dream. Though my body was literally trying to shake it away.
I share this with you because nightmares are very common in the youth that I work with. Some of them rarely sleep because of the constant nightmares of terrible things happening to them or those that they love. Or those that they love doing the terrible things to them. I know from my experience that there is very little defense that you have against this sort of attack on your mind because it is happening when you are unconscious.
I am not surprised that the youth that struggle with the bad dreams the most are those who have been trying to make the most progress in changing their lives to follow Jesus. I'm not the kind of person that overly spiritualizes things but I really think that there is a connection to the unseen world and these dreams. It seems to be an effective tactic because a dream and betray the trust a youth has in a parent, a youth worker, and even God.
This past week we have seen some amazing movement in some kids lives with God. I feel like I am closer with God than I have been in awhile. Maybe it is just a coincidence, but if you pray, pray the evil dreams would be replaced by a dreaming of vision and hope. Now excuse me - I need to get some sleep.