For several weeks I have been living with a constant, painful sense of dread, which began after a particularly disturbing dream. Last Wednesday I talked this over with a wise, spiritual woman. All that day, I had a headache, which progressed to a migraine by bedtime, leading to a very disturbed night. Early next morning I had a vivid dream about my father, which is a very rare occurrence for me, as we were never close. I have no memories of him asking me about myself, touching, kissing, or embracing me.
In the dream, my father and I were standing next to a car in a country park. Within the park there was a sports centre, built on top of a steep hill. He wanted to walk there, whereas I needed to continue in the car, as I wasn’t strong enough to climb the hill. We therefore agreed to split up, meeting again shortly at the centre.
The car took me quickly up the hill, but my father didn’t arrive as expected, and I gradually became more and more concerned about him. Aware that he had already suffered two heart attacks, I feared he might have had a third on the hill, and be lying somewhere needing help, or even dead.
Then, at last, he arrived. We hugged tightly for a long time, sharing a deep, reciprocal closeness. While we were hugging, he kept murmuring in my ear gently, quietly and comfortingly. Although I can’t remember what he said, his words and tone of voice were soothing and reassuring.
In the dream, I knew that my mother was dead, but as the hug continued, I felt for the first time ever that this man was my father and my mother, all at once. It was an entirely novel sensation for me, both physically and emotionally. I also experienced love for him, and because of the way he was holding me I was confident that he loved me, too. During our hug I felt safe, loved, satisfied and complete.
After waking up, I realised that my dream had given me a first, brief glimpse of God’s unconditional love. This left me stunned. It’s something I have known about intellectually for a long time, but I haven’t truly experienced it before this dream.
As truly as God is our Father, so truly is God our Mother (Julian of Norwich).
He loves us with unfailing love; the LORD‘s faithfulness endures forever. Praise the LORD! (Psalm 117:2; NLT).