Wooden Spoons

I had a dream about swallowing a wooden spoon. I almost choked on it but didn’t. After I swallowed it, I tried to cough it back up. It was uncomfortable for a minute, but then I got used to it. In my dream, after having swallowed the wooden spoon, I started having success in everything that I attempted.

It was a strange dream. I don’t know how I feel about dreams. But I do know that, historically, God has used them to reveal his plans. I’m not saying this is what happened with my dream, but the symbolism was not missed. I thought about the dream casually off and on for a few days. It bothered me.

Then it occurred to me. The wooden spoon is my past – my childhood. When I was growing up, I didn’t have a silver spoon by any means. We were very poor. The wooden spoon caused me a lot of problems when I first swallowed it. It almost choked me. It could have killed me. It could have made me bitter and angry and mean. I wanted to get rid of it!

But then, something happened when I came to terms with the spoon. I became successful. When I stopped struggling against the things I could not change and accepted the opportunities not merely to survive but to prosper, I began to see blessings everywhere. God blessed me indeed!

However, even in my dream, after random victories, I would remember that I had swallowed the spoon and it would be uncomfortable again. Our pasts feel that way. No matter how much success we achieve, when we think of the past, it still hurts us. And still, we can do nothing to change it.

Our pasts can destroy us if we don’t learn to acknowledge and accept them. The very things that were meant to destroy us may be the very things that inspire us and move us to our most fulfilling futures. We should all learn to live in this moment and enjoy the moment we are in, recognizing that what our pasts and the people in it may have “… meant for evil … God meant it for good ….” (Genesis 50:20, ESV).

When we accept our pasts and stop struggling against them, we can begin to look around and see that everyone is choking on something. This is our chance to do incredible things. Incredible things like laying our phones down to have dinner with our friends and families. Incredible things like bringing coffee to coworkers. Incredible things like praying for each other, supporting each other and loving one another.

I believe that most “why” questions will not be answered in this life. But, every now and then, God gives us hints as to why something has happened. Sometimes we are reminded in subtle ways – sometimes in dreams – that God has a way of turning things around. When we seek to love Him and love other people, extraordinary things can happen with wooden spoons.

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