Recently, I had a dream in which I was standing next to a small ranch house that I knew was mine. The house and yard were clean and well-kept on the outside, except for a small porch that was near the side door. The porch itself was not very high off the ground - maybe two feet high at the most. The porch was made out of cinder blocks and it appeared as if someone were breaking it apart to put a new porch on the house. Most of the cinder block was broken, and a dirt infill was supporting the inside of the small porch walls. As I stood in the driveway looking at the house and porch, rats began running to and fro all over the drive, yard, and broken porch. The rats were trying to get into the house, but could not find an entrance in order to get in. Suddenly, all the rats disappeared by running in all directions away from the house. There were two rats left near the house. One climbed up through the siding, but still could not get into the house while another ran into a hole that was in the dirt of the broken up porch. I remember trying to step on the rats to kill them, thinking to myself that the house would really be nice if I could just get rid of these nasty rats.
When I arrived at church that morning, I told Bob Cassady the dream I had because he was standing in the driveway with me in my dream. Bob is someone I always check out dreams or some type of discernment with because of his spiritual giftings. Bob and I had a good laugh about the dream and pretty much knew what God was trying to show me. The only other person that I shared the dream with was Carolyn Russell, and she probably thought I was pulling her leg as usual.
Later that night, I received a phone call from Sherry Menchaca. She told me that she had just called Bob Cassady because she had a weird dream on Sunday morning and wanted to see what Bob thought about it. As she began to tell Bob about her dream, Bob began to laugh at her. Poor Sherry was probably thinking that Bob was laughing at her, but he was laughing because he "knew" what was coming. She began to tell him that she was at a house in her dream and rats began running all over the yard looking for way to get into the house. Sherry thought to herself that the rats could not get into the house because the foundation ran too deep. All of a sudden, the rats took off in all different directions and disappeared. There was one rat remaining who did not run off. He looked at Sherry, but Sherry stared him down and said to the rat I know who you are. The rat then slowly tucked his head and ran away.
The Downriver "Rat"!
After Sherry finished relaying the dream to me, I told her about the dream that I had and the confirmation her dream was to mine. I also told her what the interpretations to the dreams were and the importance of keeping an eye out for things that would try to infiltrate our lives to undermine our spiritual integrity and health. There are numerous "rats" in our lives that would work behind the scenes, bringing pestilence and death to wherever their infected bodies might transverse. As Christians, we are told to keep a diligent watch over our lives, hearts, and thoughts keeping them unstained by the world or the world's ideas. When these "rats" gain a foothold, they multiply, quickly destroying whatever structure they might be in or under.
When the Philistines in the book of Judges captured the ark of the covenant from the Israelites in battle and took it back into their country, God struck them with a plague of rats. The rats destroyed their crops, infested their houses, transmitted disease throughout their towns, and made life miserable for the inhabitants of the Philistine territories. The Philistines pleaded with their leaders to get rid of the ark for they knew that the rat problem was associated with their possession of the ark. Once the ark was sent back to where it rightfully belonged, the rat problem stopped and life returned to normal.
First Samuel chapter 6 says:
When the ark of the Lord had been in Philistine territory seven months, the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners and said, “What shall we do with the ark of the Lord? Tell us how we should send it back to its place.”
They answered, “If you return the ark of the god of Israel, do not send it back to him without a gift; by all means send a guilt offering to him. Then you will be healed, and you will know why his hand has not been lifted from you.”
The Philistines asked, “What guilt offering should we send to him?”
They replied, “Five gold tumors and five gold rats, according to the number of the Philistine rulers, because the same plague has struck both you and your rulers. Make models of the tumors and of the rats that are destroying the country, and give glory to Israel’s god. Perhaps he will lift his hand from you and your gods and your land. Why do you harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh did? When Israel’s god dealt harshly with them, did they not send the Israelites out so they could go on their way?
May we be watchful and diligent in our prayer lives and our walks with Jesus, continually being on guard against those "rats" that would infiltrate and destroy the work God is doing in each of us as well as our country. This year, may we keep our eyes open and our hearts ready for attack as we continually face the unrelenting onslaught from these "rats"!
Stay Holy, My Friends!