Dear Fr. Phil:
From the time I was a small child, I've had a very firm belief in God. My religious background is very eclectic to say the least. My father is Methodist, my mother Baptist, I attended Catholic school for 6 years and my husband's family is Pentecostal. Luckily, I feel at home in any church as long as they believe Jesus is the son of God and other common Christian beliefs.
However, recently I've been struggling with an issue and I stumbled across your site while doing a search.
Since I was a small child I've had recurring dreams. Dreams where I am murdered. The same dreams over and over for 31 years. Recently, these dreams have gotten more intense and I feel as though I am in danger. That may sound insane and normally I'm very rational, but it's a very strong feeling. I've even prayed for God to send his angels to protect me.
I wondered about reincarnation but after reading your article on this topic, it seems pretty clear to me that the Bible teaches against reincarnation. So, I am wondering what might be causing these dreams and how I should handle it. I guess I'm seeking some sort of spiritual guidance but I'm also trying to be very cautious because my Pentecostal in-laws have pounded into me how careful we have to be about allowing evil forces disguised as something else into our lives.
Thank you for your time.
I don't know why some people have terrible, recurring dreams. In my experience they are not a forecast of future events, but more of a cross and trial for the person enduring them. You of course are correct to pray that God will send angels to protect you. The important thing for each one of us is to ask God for the grace we need to do his will each day ("our daily bread") and then place our trust in him for tomorrow. That does always involve a spiritual struggle. Many times we fall and then need the humility to ask him to pick us up and enable us to continue on. Have you read That Hideous Strength? I love the line where Ransom tells Jane to not have any more terrible dreams, but instead have children.
Prayers, Lori. God bless,
Fr. Phil Bloom