Friday, August 05, 2011

Prophets of Hope, Prophets of Warning, Prophets of Phenomena

Spiritual phenomena occur - or at least we can be certain that many of us experience things which we consider to be radical experiences of interaction with the unseen world. This set of posts is not meant to be some kind of compendium of experiences and evidences of the validity of spiritual phenomena, rather this is simply a response to the fact that everyday people experience things they do not understand. These experiences come with communication, and this communication seems to come from another place than this world.

I admit to beginning with an assumption as previously stated that God is communicating with people, and desires to do so unbiasedly with all people. Those who know God are best positioned to be interpreters of those experiences, and this sets the people who know and understand God in a unique position - as prophets of spiritual phenomena.

It was Halloween. Actually, it was one of the days during the month-long Halloween season in Salem, MA. The Gathering had set up a tent for Free Dream Interpretation. A young man dressed in a black cape, carrying a tall staff was visiting Salem with a group of friends. He stopped to experience the booth, and I was monitoring the line. I ended up interpreting his dream that night. (The full story can be found in this post.)

What began as a mysterious and fearful dream, became a worldview changing experience of communication from an unseen realm. This young man began with the belief that everything in the spiritual realm was safe and good to experience, but his dream of black helicopters chasing him and his friends through the canyons of Red Rock, CO became a communication about the potential malignant capacities of unseen powers.

A dream was a warning for this young man. In my thinking the dream was clear and an obvious communication of warning. Yet, for this young man, his own worldview blocked his understanding of the meaning of the dream, and as I shared my interpretation of the dream his worldview changed in an instant - or as the scriptures might say - his "eyes were opened."

This is an example of those who know their God and His ways become interpreters of spiritual phenomena, and in doing so become prophets to their generation. In this case, I became a prophet of warning.

For seven or eight years we have been interpreting dreams in *Salem each October. Teams of our friends sit with people and interpret dreams filled promise and hope, and we begin with the premise that God desires to bless people and speak hope into their lives. We become prophets of hope for the dreamers.

Yet, people are coming not only with dreams, but with experiences of open visions, of personal miracles and healing. There are even moments when our interaction with the people who come to us become a moment of spiritual phenomenon.

Carlos Z sees visions of people in various settings, and these visions often end up as descriptors of their lives and the struggles they are facing. I have seen a number of people amazed at the accuracy of his visions. He is one of many who have become prophets of phenomena, and voices of the unseen God to the people of this world.

This is the challenge of each of us who claim to know our God and have studied His ways, and claim to hear His voice: Can we envision ourselves as interpreters of the meaning behind spiritual phenomena? and consequently prophets of both hope and warning?

*This same ministry of dream interpretation and of spiritual blessings occurs each year at the Burning Man Festival. In three weeks we travel to spend a week as prophets of phenomena to the Burners on the Black Rock Playa.

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