By Francis Frangipane
In a dream I saw a temple standing in an open field. My view of the temple was from its side, about two hundred yards away. I could not see its front, yet it must have been completely open because great light flashed out from the inside. It pulsed like lightning yet was solid like sunlight. I knew this light was the glory of God.
The temple was so close that I knew with just a little effort I actually could enter the glory of God. His holy presence was clearly within my reach. There were also others directly in front of me whom I recognized as people from church. And while the temple and its light were visible and readily accessible to all, every head was bent downward and turned away from the light; each was occupied with other things.
I heard one voice say, "I have to do laundry." Another said, "I have to go to work." People were reading newspapers, watching televisions, and eating. I was sure everyone could see the light if they wanted to -- even more sure that we all knew His glory was near. There were even a few people reading the Bible and praying, but everyone maintained the downward thrust of their gaze; each had a mental barrier of some kind between themself and the place of God's presence. No one, though, stood up and steadfastly walked into the nearby glory of God.
However, as I watched, suddenly my wife lifted her head and beheld the temple. She stood and walked without pausing toward the open front. As she drew closer to the light, a garment of glory formed and thickened around her; the closer she went, the more dense the light surrounding her became. Finally she stepped in front of the temple, turned, and stood in full view of the blazing glory of God. Then she entered the temple.
Oh! How jealous I felt. My wife had entered the glory of God before me!
Suddenly, I realized that there was nothing stopping me from approaching God's presence -- nothing except the multitude of things I had to do and responsibilities that, in truth, ruled my life more than the voice of God. Pushing the weight of these pressures from me, I determined to rise and enter the temple myself. But, to my great regret, in my dream as I rose up, I suddenly woke up!
The longing and disappointment within me seemed unbearable. I had been so close to entering God's presence. How I wanted to stand in the temple and be swallowed up in His glory! I cried, "Lord, why did You let me wake up?"
Immediately the word of the Lord responded. He said, "I will not have My servant's life fulfilled by a dream. If you want your dream to come true, you have to wake up."
Today God is awakening us to the reality of His presence. Indeed, if we truly want Christ to shine upon us, we must arise from the distractions that entomb us. The Lord's promises must become more to us than dreamlike realities reserved only for the hereafter. For this reason Scripture says, "Awake, sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you" (Eph. 5:14). Right at this moment the presence of the living God is near enough to reach; we can enter the outraying of His presence. But if we want our dream of standing in God's fullness to come true, beloved, we must wake up.
Adapted from Francis Frangipane's book, The Days of His Presence, available at www.arrowbookstore.com.