Find the Time
December 1 2023
I dream almost every night and can recall in detail most of what I dreamt. I realize most of my dreams don’t mean anything. However, some of them have messages that communicate current matters while others speak to the future. For example, in June of 2020, I dreamed that my wife preceded me in death. I told her and my son about my dream but dismissed it because I thought it would be 15-20 years down the road. In September of that same year our granddaughter had the same dream and woke up very emotional. A year from the time I had my dream, my wife died suddenly from pancreatitis. Some dreams are meaningful, and some are prophetic.
I recently had a dream I am choosing not to ignore. In that dream, I saw myself standing in a driveway talking to two of my children. They had my undivided attention. As they were talking, a man walked up and asked if he could speak with me. Because of my engagement with my children, I did not immediately acknowledge him. When I decided to talk to him, he was already walking back down the driveway. I called out and when he looked back at me, he said, “All I wanted was a few minutes of your time and you could not even give me that”. He had tears in his eyes. I realized at that point, he needed someone to talk to. He was lonely and I felt horrible.
Several years ago, I knew this young man who worked in the mailroom at one of my operating centers. He was extremely bright, and I connected with him. I encouraged him to go back to school and finish his degree and he did. Upon graduating he enrolled in an MBA program. I was extremely proud of his accomplishments. He eventually left our company for a job in his field of study in Information Technology. We kept in contact with each other for a while.
One day he called me and was excited to share he had bought a home which included a pool table. He knew I enjoyed playing the game, he invited me over and challenged me to play a few games. I was extremely busy with work, church, personal interests, family and who knows what else, but I promised I would come by when it was more convenient.
As I was working one day, a coworker walked into my office and told me this young man had committed suicide. I at once thought about our last conversation and his request for me to visit. Obviously, he was going through something and needed someone to talk to. He was crying out and I did not recognize he was troubled. I was too busy. You can imagine how I felt.
My recent dream is a reminder to pay attention to people who may need companionship especially during this time of the year. They are lonely, believe their life does not matter and no one cares.
I would encourage you to stop and listen if you sense someone is experiencing a crisis and needs help. Most people won’t share how they are feeling and that’s why your antenna of sensitivity has to be at its highest level. If you are too busy or consumed with mounting priorities, you will not notice.
God will bring people into our midst for us to help them. He has graced us to be able to share words of wisdom that will encourage and lift the spirit of heaviness from those who may be suffering.
Let’s take on a role similar to that of the Good Samaritan who saw a man lying on the side of the road half dead and stopped to help him. Two others had seen him but refused to extend any help. He poured medicine on his wounds, bandaged him up, placed him on his mule and transported him to an Inn where he could rest and recover. He did not mind being inconvenienced because saving the man’s life was way more important.
I believe God has a great reward for us if we love our neighbors as ourselves and show compassion to those who may be in need. Who knows, we may just save a life.