Following the Difficult Path Part 3: The Prescription

I hope that you have read both part 1 and part 2 and have had some time to bring the dream I have shared to the Holy Spirit. I also hope you have been able to discern if there is anything for you to learn. I know that not all of my dreams are for everyone. However, before I begin, I would like to go a bit deeper into the importance of parables.

In the gospels, we see that Jesus used parables to reveal the truth to his disciples and anyone else who would listen. His stories are what I call “cryptic” because they often were not understandable without wisdom directly given when asked what they meant. I believe Jesus used parables because they were only discernible in a relationship with Him.

Prophetic dreams, or what I often call “parables of the night” are the same. They can only be discerned in a relationship with Jesus through the Holy Spirit and God’s Word. So, after waking and writing the dream down, I seek the Lord in prayer for what message He may be giving me and never assume I understand until I seek wisdom from God.

As I have studied and read them, I have learned that there are two basic types of parables that Jesus uses, prescriptive and descriptive. A prescriptive parable, just like a prescription from your doctor, has a purpose to help us to live in a spiritually healthier way. A prescriptive parable serves to calls us to action. The second, like your science teacher telling you about gravity, has the purpose of understanding. A descriptive parable is one we cannot change the outcome of but will gain certain wisdom.

An example of a prescriptive parable would be found in Matthew 18:21-25 and is called “the unforgiving servant.” Here Jesus is calling us to the action of forgiveness and a prescription for our life. Forgiveness is a way to stay spiritually healthy. He tells what happens when we do not forgive as God forgives us. Jesus warns us to make the appropriate changes in our behavior just as a doctor tells a person with diabetes to avoid sugar. There will be consequences if this prescription is not taken.

An example of a descriptive parable is found in Matthew 13:1-9 and is called “the parable of the sower.” In this story, Jesus was telling us what happens in different people’s lives as we share the gospel with them. Though many think Jesus wants us to fix our soil, I believe the parable is describing what happens in our attempts to spread the gospel message. He does this so we do not get discouraged in our calling to make disciples like the description of gravity helps us not get discouraged when we can’t jump as high as we would like. 

The dream I have revealed in this series is prescriptive because I sense there is an action needed and a warning to understand. I think the prescription comes in a verse that crossed my path as I sought God for the dream’s meaning. I want to paraphrase Jeremiah 16:6 in view of this dream; Look where your raft is heading, ask if it is on your path is like the one Jesus said it should be like. The destination of peace only comes from choosing Jesus’ way. Staying in your current stream is like saying “No” to God’s promise.

The raft flowing on the free-flowing river revealed to me that we, that God sees the current Christian Church using the wrong means to get to the right end, peace with God. We have somehow believed that Christian life should be “easier” than it is, so we make decisions so that our lives will be above the fray of this world. In other words comfort + ease + no trouble = peace. But I am afraid biblically that equation is wrong. Jesus reveals in His Word peace is only achieved by understanding that sorrow + the love and presence of Jesus is what will equal peace.

Remember that it was the muddy river that took the effort to traverse, which gave them a more accurate view of the Christian life we can expect. The clear picture I get in scripture is that the life of following Jesus will be similar to His, full of sacrifice and trouble. Jesus is misunderstood, mocked, spit on, and that was nothing compared to the rejection He faced from foe, friend, and even His Father. When He said that we are to pick up our “cross and follow,” he reveals to us what our journey will look like when we follow Him and His ways. Yet that is the way to true peace.

But more than wanting us to find peace, the dream seemed to reveal that a change in focus was required. The person in the raft was told to look around them and “rescue the perishing” not only once but repeatedly. Have we gotten so caught up in finding our own peace that we have forgotten that God has called us to bring peace and love to those around us. Especially those who are sinking in the mud of their journey.

I’ve seen and heard so many Christians talking about the “rapture” these days and how they are so anticipating it’s soon arrival. They seem like they want to float above the daily news and Jesus to “take us out of here.” This dream is a wake-up call to confess our complacency and realize what is going on around us. When Jesus returns to take the Christians away, do you understand what those who remain will face? Are we concerned for those around us who need the peace and rescue only Jesus can offer them? Do you remember that He put you here and saved you for them, not just for yourself?

I will finish with this. I have a functional medicine doctor I see for my chronic illness who writes out a prescription when I have my visits. They are not usually for medicine because she knows that medication alone will not make a difference. Instead, she lets me know of the action steps needed if I am going to feel better. She tells me to try changing what I eat, lowering my stress, and exercising within my limits. I have learned that my willingness to do those things results in a good or bad day.

I believe that Jesus gave me this dream for the same reason. As a follower of Jesus, I have actions that make a difference within the Kingdom of God. When I am willing to do them, more of the Kingdom of God comes with the peace I desire and the saving of many other lives. I saw the two ways I can walk and which one leads to life, and which leads to death. I have decided to choose life.

How about you? If you call yourself a Christian, I ask you to consider this dream and which river you are currently in, free-flowing or muddy. Will your raft make a difference even if it takes effort, or will your raft keep leading you in the wrong direction. The question I pose to you is this. Are you willing to take this prescription to love others before yourself?

I would love to get your comments on what you perceived in this dream and how my interpretation hit you. Let’s interact!

1 Comment

  1. keep up the good work begun Coleen

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *