The devil dreams all night and plants his dreams in the minds of mortals all day. It is not the temptations of our reality that drive us toward sin; it is the fantasies of our minds that betray us so. I remember receiving some marital advice only a few weeks before my wedding where the advisor beckoned my wife and myself to never stop dreaming, believing that this advice would help propel us toward marital bliss. This very quaint wisdom was likely one of the worst pearls that I had ever received. I have come to believe that dreams are a lie, more than that they are a ploy, a ploy to keep us from improving the reality that lay before us and instead having us set our hearts on a fantasy that could never exist in the world where we live. In dreaming, we turn our attention from the bounty and opportunity that God lays before us and we direct it at an alter reality where we are selfish and happy, as if the two could ever coexist. What is worse is that we can create solace in that alter reality and abandon the true God-given reality we are afforded in our present. Dreaming in this way is indulgence, sinful ungrateful indulgence.
Unlike these aspiration dreams hope and faith are God given realities, where miracles and good will can be created. In much the same way God is often able to work magic through goals and achievement. But fantasies, dreams, are separate from these Godly influences. Dreams and fantasies are terms outside the language of God and boldly labelled in the dictionary of the Devil.
Dreams are a falsehood. All dreams from the American dream to the dreams presented on the big screen, to the harlequin romance, to the pornography plastered all over the internet are a lie. They steal our attention and lead us away from reality and take us to a place where we are happy and selfish, and the world serves us alone. But if we are able to snap back to reality for a moment we know that the selfish fantasy world cannot exist on this earth. On earth, riches follow the ruthless and spawn loneliness and greed. On earth the upper echelons of nearly every profession and government are occupied by the heartless population who choose prestige & power over love & acceptance. Dreams are for suckers, suckers willing to buy the lie of a fantasy instead of the hope of reshaping their reality for the better.
In Proverbs we are taught that “he who chases fantasies lacks judgment” and in Psalms we are similarly instructed that the Lord hates fantasies as he hates the arrogant and the proud. These two scriptures are the only the two places in the Bible where God deals with the issue of aspirational dreams. Through this omission, it is as if God is expecting dreams to grant dreams none of our attention because they occupy virtually none of God’s Word. If we spend our time and attention living for fantasies then we spend our time and attention away from God’s true blessings in our lives. And also away from the work that God has laid before us to do for God’s glory. Though reality can be dreadful and cold, have the courage to live in your present reality and brighten it for the glory of God and in doing so, also for the good of the human race.
A frightening consequence of devoting time to fantasies is that they can become a place of solace, where people will run to avoid facing their reality. This can lead to stagnation and a reality that slowly slips further and further away from the hope we and God once had for it. We can end up placing our hope and our efforts in the dreams of our minds that grants us a superficial high to get us through our daily dose of reality. In essence the dreamworld is no different than heroine or alcohol; it is a means of self medication to help lighten the darkness that is cast across our hearts by a reality that we hate. Like any form of self medication the carnage that it creates in our lives is not usually visible until it is out of control. In the case of dreams, they are creating a warzone that has stretched over generations, and the damage has been creeping up from below so slowly that we still hardly see it at all. Over generations the reality in which we dwell everyday is falling victim to neglect by people who choose to place their time and effort in a low maintenance dreamworld instead of in a reality that requires their passion and commitment in order to flourish. Our generations are taking the easy route to pleasure, and the world suffers.
It has forever been to easy to impulsively choose instant pleasure over long term prosperity. I am certain that there are businesses that are lost everyday because people do not suffer today to preserve a better tomorrow. It is vital that we see through the impulsive dreamy lies that are being spread so leisurely in our culture because they are killing that culture. Part of the proof is how we are selling these lies to each other. Young women who are looking to men for total care are dressing to sell the dream of sexual satisfaction to gain their total care. Young men are selling the dreams of love and luxury in exchange for that sexual satisfaction. When the reality is like a bad barter where neither sides goods are what they are advertising them to be. More than that, when we are faced with these shortcomings we often seem to dive further into dreams of selfish ecstasy, instead of abandoning them in order to reshape our God-given reality. So the men move on to younger and trashy and women move to the richer and more ambitious men, ignoring the blessings of relationship family, community, fellowship and sharing gracefully bestowed on us by God. The more we do so, the more our blessings are lost, even though they are the only true pleasures afforded to us in this world.