Dreams are a curious phenomenon and sometimes they can be a bit troubling. This morning I awoke with one of those unsettling dreams that leaves you wondering, "Where did that come from?" and "What does that mean?"
In my dream I was engaged to a man. In the dream I obviously knew him and wanted to marry him but he is not someone I know in this life. The dream took place in what seemed to be a massive park shelter filled with picnic tables, friends and family. I was sitting in the back and my fiancé was up front, in front of another girl who was parading around on a makeshift stage that was the focal point of the room. During the dream I was aware that this event was supposed to be a wedding shower but there was a problem with the celebration. The guests seemed to think that the couple with the impending marriage was not my fiancé and ME, but my fiancé and the girl parading around up front. Even during the dream I knew there was something terribly wrong taking place. Words weren't even exchanged, but I knew that my fiancé was leaving me for another woman at our wedding shower!
I'm not sure how long I spent watching this scene unfold until I bolted out of the camp shelter and into a nearby home. My "fiancé" never came after me. Next thing I knew it I was packing my bags and getting ready to flee. Then I woke up.
In the still of the night my eyes abruptly popped open. Where on earth did that dream come from? I was perplexed. I still am perplexed. I haven't been knowingly pinning for a fiancé or even a date and the last broken relationship I had was over three years ago. There is no fresh love triangle trauma to ignite such a startling dream. So what does all of this mean?
Sometimes I wish I had the dream-interpreting talents of Joseph. I wish I could hear this twisted tale and explain the hidden truth behind the strange scenario. But, alas, I am not Joseph. I am just Stephanie, a girl with uninterpreted perplexing dreams.
The precise meaning of my dream I can't claim to understand but there is certainly an important truth found in this convoluted tale. God's love is faithful. The love of a man, even a man in a dream, can prove utterly unfaithful. Lovers can leave us without warning and without explanation. Friends can abandon us. The relationships that we enjoy one day can be lost the next, changing as quickly as the winds.
The only one who never changes is God. He is the only one who will never, ever leave us.
You and I have been hurt and betrayed by the abandonment of the people we loved and trusted. We put our hearts on the line, revealed our vulnerabilities and gave of our love. Then that person took our precious heart and stomped on it, threw it in the trash or simply let it fall to the ground as if it meant nothing at all. The sting of abandonment is excruciating. Being betrayed is devastating.
Haven't we all experienced this kind of rejection? Haven't we all been hurt by someone we trusted wholeheartedly?
The love of a man or a friend is always flawed. There is no perfect human love. It simply doesn't exist. There is only one Love that is perfect - never betraying, never hurting, never abandoning. The love of God is the only completely faithful love that will never disappoint us.
Lamentations 3:22-23 proclaims the truth of perfect love. "The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." In the Lord we find the love that this world can never provide. He alone is the perfect lover of our souls. The love He lavishes on us is unconditional and constant. He won't suddenly leave us. The nightmare of being rejected at the wedding shower, or worse still, at the alter, is a concern the beloved of God don't have to even consider. He will never walk away from you. His love doesn't shift with the wind and it doesn't have a wandering eye. His love for you and for me is constant, from now until the end of time.
There is nothing that can separate us from the love of God. The beautiful truth of His love is that even when we don't deserve it and even when we've abandoned and betrayed Him, He hasn't given up on us. He is still waiting with open arms to welcome us back into relationship with Him. Unlike in my dream when I ran away when my heart as broken, God doesn't run. His steadfast love is so secure that not even our betrayal can shake His faithfulness.
The only perfect love story is the one written about God and the love He has for His children. All other dream weddings and "happily ever afters" can turn into a nightmare. A groom can run away and a fiancé can ask for his shiny diamond ring back. But God will never leave. We never have to worry that He will abandon or betray our trust. He will never break our delicate hearts. His perfect love remains forever.