Aug. 17, 2005
(Edited by sister Elaine Cochran)
I took a two hour nap shortly before noon. I had woken up, and brother B. A. called me while I was trying to resume the dream, so I just launched into relaying the dream to him over the phone until He stopped me. He encouraged me to write it down, which is a habit that is still uncomfortable for me, but let me try.
A little bit context before I get into the dream. I received an article from brother L. D. written by T. Austin Spark, entitled “The Transcendent Value of the Knowledge of Christ.” In this writing Sparks expanded on the sufferings of Paul. I was a little troubled and thought to myself, “indeed Paul received the knowledge of Christ, yet most of that story was not developed along the line of his natural life, which is but a reflection. Rather it was along his spiritual or supernatural encounters with this Divine Knowledge.” So I dropped the reading and went to lie down and meditate a bit, not only on how to approach the spiritual education, but also on the recent things I felt the Lord had been shifting around me, especially the direction of His leading. During that time I fell asleep and started the dream.
Commotions in a public square
I was standing in the midst of a large crowd of people, somewhere in like a city square. A Chinese woman was passionately addressing the people there. The people had various reactions: some were listening, some protesting, and some were safeguarding the situation for it was a big commotion. As for me, just being a bystander, I was curiously watching what was going on. When the woman finally stopped speaking, she was escorted out of the crowd. As they were squeezing their way out, I began to follow them. I realized at that time in the dream that I was actually brought there by some friend, as he was following as well. Seemingly the whole thing was a political gathering for a political course, yet the people involved had no clue of the political nature of what was taking place.
As we followed, the crowd began to disperse, people fell behind and scattered away. We finally entered some hideous place underground. It was a like dungeon, filthy, shabby, and disordered. Cells without doors stood on either side of a narrow path, through which we were moving forward quickly. You could see people (almost all of them were black) in the cells just laying in their beds, no excitement, no halting, no shouting, no feeling. These people were drastically different from the ones outside. They seemed to be accustomed to this situation and had completely lost interest in life. Their fearful and motionless features reminded me that they were but refugees there. Yet, not paying attention to any of this, the zealous and passionate group that I was following moved swiftly onward. Some of them seemed to be western journalists. They were talking and following along, questioning the speaker and another Chinese woman, sister of her’s indeed.
I somehow realized that the two of them were from my village and they were the leaders of this underground place. They were eager to answer the question and got excited to talk about it. They seemed to be filled with some kind of feeling of rewarded success. They were very aware that they deserved to be honored and were quite proud of the fact they earned this attention at last. The sadness of of it all was that no one ever stopped to even look around at the people in the cells, and I was troubled by that.
Suddenly we stopped, my friend finally got their attention and was able to introduce me to them. I had to push myself though in order to reach their extending hands. However, we didn’t even have the chance to shake hands, but only a touch. At that moment I was able to look closely at their faces. How awful their composure and complexions were, pale and distorted, like ones long deprived of the benefits of sun light. They tried to smile at me and express their joy to recognize a younger, long-missed, hometown lad, but they did a bad job, for I was a little frightened by their expressions. They bore the facial features I would deem as demonic which I have seldom encountered in my life. (I have seen ones with terrible inner trouble that their distorted faces would look like melted wax. Each time I would ask myself, “What a heart of hatred and trouble could allow a person to bear such an unbecoming face? This is terrible.”) Yet with the exciting atmosphere whirling around, I quickly dropped my troubled thought and continued following.
A underground place
The underground place was like a long-extending tunnel. At the end of it we finally we reached a large cell. It was open to the narrow passageway, and had two people on the bed their bodies completely covered except for their feet. It was no difference compared to other cells, but inside this cell was a hidden door which led us to an inner room that was much like an office cell. It had a table with a computer sitting on top of it. There were already two guys inside, and others jumped instantly into their business, I was spared to look at them.
One of the individuals was a white man, I recognized his face, and had known him for a long time, but his figure had totally changed. He was so thin, giving me an illusion that I could hold his wrist using one of my small hands. He was so tall, that he shot up like a bamboo. He had to bent over in order to pay me honor. He recognized me and offered me a smile of apology. He obviously wanted to talk to me but was restrained. There were rules to follow, I guess. I also recognized that this place was like the headquarters for the whole place. Orders were issued here, meeting were hold here, and the leaders might lodge here as well. This was the heart of the entire secret. I should be sensible enough to feel privileged to be allowed to enter here.
There seemed to be no reason for me to stay, so I withdrew myself. Taking good care of the bare feet in the outer room, I got back to the narrow passage outside of the cell. Looking to the right, everything came to an end except another cell. I went to left hoping to find something interesting. I did. There were two larger cells their openings faced each other. Within one of the cells were some black boys. They seemed to be some of the only approachable ones, at least they were awake. On the other side, three boys were sitting together, and hanging on the wall were two or three posters.
A forgotten picture and young ones
Interesting! So I went to look at the drawings on the posters. Even more interesting! There were actually some Chinese things in one of the posters. Somehow, I enjoyed some input from outside, and was able to have an understanding. This was actually a legacy by some Chinese dwellers here. They used to lead the people and had a different vision. The picture expressed the belief and hope for which they had fought.
The boys seemed shy and fearful about my presence there. I began to have pity on them, and tried to engage with one of them. He was quite active, and appeared to be a little leader there and dared to step down. We did not talk in the first, but I was entertained with some delicious and alluring tomatoes. Finishing one, I reached out for another, asking the boy, “Can I?” Suddenly, I recognized it was an improper thing to do. These people might have not too much food here. But the boy nodded to me and explained to me that they were not in lack of food. His big brother got all these for them somewhere outside. So I took another one, a big and sweet one, curious of how could these people get their food. However, knowing that these little ones would know nothing about it, I did not even bother myself to ask.
Journey out to a ruined temple
I bid them farewell and left. I decided to search out the function of the whole place and get to know the secret of it. To my surprise, I now hold the poster of the vision just under my right arm. I opened it and suddenly understood it was not simply a picture after all, it was the secret map of the whole place. Every hidden way was clearly marked. An outlet was just in front of me. I headed that way.
I crossed a wooden bridge over a little stream and launched unto a dark, rough path. Plants and grass piled up there, as if it had been long abandoned. Fear began to seize me. I remember I was trying to remind myself in my dream that I should endeavor to remember this terrible feeling of desperation and loneliness when I wake up. The intense feeling came when I realized that I did not even know what was the right direction. There was absolutely no light in sight, but I was lucky enough to know intuitively the way before me, marked out on the map.
Finally I fought through the thickness and darkness on the path, and began to see light ahead, which made the walk much easier. I reached an open place, somewhere in my dream I knew it was actually a temple with a cluster of buildings, desolated and unattended for a long time.
Good western people near the temple
Lying out in front of me, quite far from the buildings for they were now out of sight, on the ground were several stone tables with chairs all around, ones like we have in park. And I understood there were good-hearted people that stealthily and persistently had provided the food for the miserable ones underground. They had been fearless of all the pressures and oppressions of the government. These were mostly white people, many good women and men. What a glorious devotion! What a marvelous enterprise! If this was not available, all of those underground would have starved to death. All of them! My heart was full of appreciation and admiration for such a brave and compassionate company. I also felt a lot anger and disgust of the proud and showy leaders I just encountered.
Standing there I began to ponder how things came to be like this and what I suppose to do. Then the dream stopped. I was turned to a different one. But all the time while still sleeping, I strived to resume the dream and know all the meaning there. That’s when brother B.A.’s phone rang.
(As I am writing this down, I have begun to have a glimpse of understanding and significance of this dream. I believe it might have something to do with the church in China and my spirtual walk with God. May the Lord bless the hearts of the people and correct the course of His body there!!!)