Hopes & Dreams
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Hopes & Dreams

Dream it while you sleep, live it while awake

Inside the Palace of Westminster presenting the petition to Ann Main MP July 2013

I was listening this morning to Marianne as I do most Saturdays while I make an attempt at restoring order to the home after a week. Simple things like descaling the kettle. For years I had a sense that something was happening between Christmas and New Year though couldn’t put words to it. This morning Marianne spoke about Christmas day being a beginning and the New Year being the ending in the same way religious festivals in other traditions occur such as Ramadan and Rosh Hashanah. Indeed Lent is a good example of a 40 day period. It is just that I had not considered Christmas and the New Year in that category.

If you didn’t know, like I didn’t until this year, the 12 days of Christmas start on Christmas day and culminate on 6th January. So we are in the middle of a journey if you want to come. Tradition has it that the wise men visited the baby Jesus on 6th January. In truth, the Wise men probably didn’t get to Bethlehem until 2 years after his birth so they were definitely on a journey.

I find myself pruning things. Just tonight I was deleting Youtube subscriptions that I never watch. The other day I was unsubscribing to emails I never read. On Boxing Day I was throwing out papers I no longer read and clothes I no longer wear. What about you have you been doing this? If so maybe we are on the same journey, look up and choose your star.

Thinking of the wise men they had a dream while they visited the baby and in their dream they were told to return home a different way and not call in with Herod. I have been thinking about dreams and how they can show us things and at times guides us. This publication is called, ‘Hopes and Dreams for our future’ so an appropriate place to talk about dreams and the hopes they inspire.

There are some dreams that remain with me and I can quickly recall them. I believe there must have been something about those dreams that made a deep impression.

As a small child between the ages of 3 and 7, I recall two specific dreams. In one I would find myself being chased and would run until I came to the end of a cliff and then faced with the enemy I would leap. I always woke up before I landed. The other one of which I have written stories is flying with Jesus. That came from the story of Jesus and the tempting by the Devil. In the story, they seem to fly about and somewhere in my childhood mind that was enough on which to build a dream.

I don’t remember many other dreams in my teenage years until I was 17. I was in Birmingham, England and in the dream I saw the words, ‘Christ Unites Ireland’ (CUI). I acted on that dream and was involved in promoting the CUI vision for the next 3 years. Now I have just changed from the word dream to vision. So is that the difference? We dream and then we have to help others see, vision, it.

A dream that has stayed with me and I believe took away my fear of death was one in which I was sat in the back of a car when a front seat passenger produced a pistol and shot me in the head. In the dream, I felt no pain and immediately left my body and headed upward.

So when was the last time a dream made an impression? Well, now when I think about it, I dreamt of being in the home of a much older friend and just enjoying his company. During the dream everyone we knew processed through his home. That dream brought me comfort and a sense of love.

Joseph was the great dreamer of the Hebrew Bible. He would dream a dream and go and boast about it causing him to be viewed as a threat. His dreams although took time were fulfilled though not exactly as he dreamt it.

As a young boy I had a dream to be first a Policeman, then a solicitor, then a barrister and yes a Member of Parliament (MP) and also a minister of religion. I did study theology for two years though decided it was not for me. I didn’t become a police officer, a solicitor or a barrister but I did end up working in Courts and with those before them.

Parliament, well I never become a MP though through my trade unionist activism I have visited many times and in 2014 I presented a petition to Parliament in attempt, with others, to stop the privatisation of the Probation Service in England and Wales.

But that is yesterday’s manna what about fresh dreams for today. Well, each day I write here a dream comes true. Ok for the immediate future. What could be better than dreaming while asleep and living the dream while awake? May the dreams while I sleep be of my best self loving life and its people, feeling loved while I am about my Father’s business.




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