I had forgotten how much of Daniel has to do with dreams and visions. I remembered that they were there, but reading through this time, it felt much more pronounced than I remembered. We read of the king’s dreams in several places and in the most recent chapters, we read about Daniel’s dreams and visions. Dreaming keeps coming up for me in the last few days. It started with the different readings from Daniel, continued with a conversation with a person who might be working with our church on an initiative in 2017, and it came up again this morning at a Starbucks with other leaders in our Presbytery. Dreaming – not just dreams in the “traditional” understanding of what we experience when we go to sleep, but also dreaming about what will be, what could be, what might be. We’re even talking about dreaming a lot in church right now as we are talking about A Christmas Carol as a part of our focus for Advent – Scrooge’s ghosts visit while he is dreaming…
So, what’s the Lord saying in this? I have included two pictures today – one of the original shot of the candles after the 2nd Sunday of Advent worship and the other one that was a heavily modified version of the picture. The main one is the one that I tried to make look a bit “dreamier” – an approximation of the original. You can still see the same thing in it, but there’s an edge, a difference, a uniqueness to it that is not in the original shot.
I think that’s something of how dreaming can work for us. “Normal” vision sees things as they are. “Dreaming” vision still takes things as they are but then begins to play with it a bit – make a few tweaks, pushes, edits, or maybe even something entirely different. But starting with where we are at and moving to something of what can be.
Daniel was living in that way – the visions in the book of Daniel are rooted in where life was at that time but moves into a unique look at what might be.