dimanche 23 janvier 2011

chapter 8: The dreams

Life is beautiful! I am getting back from a good mission, I love a man that loves me, I have a family that I love and that takes good care of me, I have plenty of friends and I spend my day taking care of my nephews, what more could I ask for? For me was not possible to have a better life. Nothing to change.
I also had some truths that were giving me a solid base.
Max has never hidden to me or to anybody else, that he didn’t know if the story of the Mormons founder (Joseph Smith) was true and if he really was a prophet. Since I was just coming back from my mission, I had just finished spending the last 18 months of my life telling about his story to thousands of people and then asking to pray to know whether his story was true or not, it was my duty to do the same with my beloved one.
He was really troubled since even though he had prayed a lot he had never received an answer about this question. Of course I invited him to keep on doing it, to be patient, not to lose hope, and with time as for every one of us, he would have known that the story was true.
I have grown up in a family where since our youngest age we are taught this story and we hear it often on Sundays, for me was evident this story was true. Asking about it would have felt as silly as asking the Lord if my eyes were really blue.
I could have seen the truth also from the results: I was feeling well, I was happy; I was doing good things, all fruits good for me. A good fruit doesn’t grow on a bad tree.
Of course in my life I had some doubts as many people have, but I was lucky enough to have two giants on my side: my mother and my older sister.
I have always seen my mother studying the Scriptures all day long and understanding things in a way I could have never done, so if I had any question my mother or my sister would have surely had the answer for it.
For me there was nothing about to pray for that I didn’t already know, but to support Max and for respect to all the people who I asked to do it during my mission, I decided to pray to know it.
Each of us on his own side would have asked to know the truth no matter would have been the price to pay for it. I didn’t have anything to lose since I already knew the truth.
This prayer had become very important for me for it would have been the way to persuade Max of the truthfulness of this story, it was important for him to know for our own future life. How could I have put on a family with him if he didn’t believe in this basic thing? Since he was a new converted I had to be sure he would have kept this religion for the rest of his life. And this had to pass from the believing in Joseph Smith was a prophet. I was a good missionary, and with him would have been the same, I would have helped him. Realizing of the repercussion this prayer could have had on our, or better on his future life (what could have changed for me?) I took it very seriously. To prepare myself best and to show my determination to know it, I fasted all day before doing it. Then in the evening, on my knees, I prayed the Lord. As I have never done before. As I have taught along my mission: with all my heart, with real faith, ready to act according to the received answer, no matter if I would have liked it or not, effacing all my prejudices and my truths, honestly without will to influence the answer in any way, ready to know no matter the price to pay would have been, if the Lord would have judged wise to answer me.
Answer or not answer the prayer made me feel well, I had learnt a new way of praying. Praying not for what I want or is convenient to me but according to His will, I put all myself in His hands, I was full of trust. And I went to sleep…
We don’t often remember our dreams, if so they are generally unclear, we forget some of their details and especially we are conscious they were just dreams, so not real.
When I got up that morning, I could very clearly remember each detail of my dream as I never was able to do before (and even today in writing about it I realize it is like engraved in my memory), as a souvenir that I could have lived more than dreamed of. I was worried for my mother even though I knew it was a dream; I had felt as it was the reality. I didn’t have understood its signification back then, but it was so real that it troubled me deeply.
Here you have it, nothing added nor invented (and of course I didn’t know anything about Max praying the Lord if He had something to tell me to tell it in my dreams):
I was in a car and my mother was driving, my sister and her two children were at the back, I had a map reading the direction to take. I think it was kind of late since it was quite dark outside. We had to go somewhere for a meeting. Carefully following my map I was giving my mother the direction to take. As we arrived to a crossroads I said: “Follow the direction for center town” she makes a left instead of a right. “Mum, it was on your right…nothing serious we are going to catch up”. I look at my map from each side to find another way to put us back to the right direction. A crossroads again, I tell her the direction to take and she goes the other way.
BUT??!! OK, it is not that serious, next crossroads I will find another way since with all those one ways it was impossible to change direction or going back. And we found ourselves at the first crossroads again. I give her the direction as I gave her before and as before she goes the other way. That was too much and I say:
“But you are doing it on purpose or what else? We are already not in advance; we are never going to make it. We are just turning around, we are not going anywhere. Why you don’t follow what I tell you, it is me to have the map. What’s for I need to read it? Why are you doing it? Why?”
I was still talking when my mother gently pulled the car on the side of the street and with an empty look she answered me with a voice deprived of any feeling:
“It is because I am blind”
What??? That was too much for me.
“But you are completely insane! You are irresponsible; you drive with your children and with your grandchildren while you can’t see anything??? But everything is OK? Do you realize the danger of it?
We could have had an accident or worst we could have all died! You can’t see anything and you don’t say anything about it? Do you find it normal to drive while you are blind? You are really irresponsible. That’s it is me to drive now. Since you can’t see anything I drive.
I was more shocked then mad: she was not even realizing the danger of the situation. Moreover I was the only one to find it astounding, it was weird: my sister doesn’t say a word; she doesn’t even react to it. She is completely passive, as if the situation was completely normal. It is her to have her children in the car and that is pregnant not me! She is dreaming or what else?
At this point I get of the car to take the driving seat, moreover now it is dark night. I try to open the door that my mother had closed while getting out. Surprise: it is locked. I turn to my mother at the same time realizing my sister and her children got out of the car too (why did they do it?).
“Why have you locked the door, Mum? Give me the key, we are already late.”
And always with a dull voice and an empty look she said: “I don’t know, they must be on the contact”.
What??? And my idiot sister has also locked the door at the back. And my door has happened to be locked too.
“Great! Good job ladies! And what are we going to do now? But it is not possible; you must have done it on purpose”
While I was not in my best mood, mad by the fact we were not going further and by their impassibility toward the events, I realized I was talking to two walls, they didn’t understand anything, no consciousness of the gravity of their act: my mother was putting all of us in danger and my sister was trustfully following her, even in face of the evidence she was supporting her at any cost.
I am calming myself down now, let’s try to think. I am going to call somebody to take us home to take the spare keys and then back. I passed on my mind who could have helped us, nobody, all my friends are not in the position to do it or they don’t answer my calls. There is only one thing left to do: go home and come back by walk. The way looks very unpleasant: long for the 2hours needed just to go one direction, and hot since right there the sun is already at its highest in the sky while where we are is dark night.
I look at my mother: blind. I look at my sister: completely pregnant and her two children at her hands.
There is only me that can go. I leave them there immobile in a dark night.
I go in the sun decided to go back so that we could finally get to the right place.
When I got up I didn’t understand the meaning of this dream or that it could have been an answer to my prayer. For me the problem was my mother could have had an accident becoming blind. Then I told the dream to Max. He was surprise from the dream evidence. For him its meaning was clear and he was really astounded I didn’t understand it. He acknowledged me then of his praying the Lord if He had to tell me something to tell me in a dream. I didn’t believe a single word. My dream didn’t have anything to do with my prayer. Moreover it was not the answer I was waiting for.
Next night I had another weird dream.
I was a missionary. My mission president comes to visit us, me and my colleague, and takes us to a garden where he shows us a big church model of Mormon style. The model was almost finished; it was only missing its roof to be completed. We were asked to do the work. I and my colleague started
this assignment together with the help of other missionaries. We have nailed many wood boards and after a long while we have finally finished it. Te garden was longing the side of a very busy street and the giant church model was visible by everyone that was passing on this way. Once our work ended we gathered with all the other workers in a room. Behind a window I was watching the big church model.
Then I saw my mission president coming in front of the model church with somebody important (I couldn’t see his face, but I knew he was some general authority). My president was happy to show the finished model to his visitor. Then I saw my president opening the door of it and inviting his guest to get inside, I got scared and started shouting: “NO”, when I saw them both getting in. From my window I started shouting with all my strengths:
“Don’t do it, it is a fake church, don’t get inside, it is fake, it is going to collapse, it is not stable, it doesn’t have real foundations, I know it, I helped to build it!! Don’t get inside, get out, get out, it is fake, it is fake…”
I could have done my best shouting with all my strengths, they were way too far to be able to hear me.
All the other missionaries were watching what was happening, but I was the only one to be concerned for the people who got inside the church model. Since for my big grief some people passing over there having seen the giant church model were starting to get inside of it. I didn’t stop myself of shouting: “It is fake, it is fake”. There was nothing to do; no one could hear me since I was far away and the glass of the window and the noises of the passing cars were completely covering my shouting to be heard by somebody. I started to feel responsible and completely powerless for I knew all it was going to end in a bad way. Inside the model, my mission president and his guest were going toward the centre of the model main room. It was then that the wood boards started to crack under their weight and both fell in a giant hole and I saw behind the window the church model starting to get on fire and burning down with all the people that were inside it. When I got up that morning things were different. I understood. My eyes were seeing things differently. I told Max about this new dream; he listened but didn’t say anything.
Nevertheless I had already understood, next night I had another dream, maybe so that only one interpretation could have been possible for the 3 dreams, leaving me with just the freedom of accepting or refusing the message.
We were having a special fire site (it is a meeting) where an apostle (for the ones who are not Mormons an apostle is someone that holds a high position in the hierarchy of this church) had to give a speech. Everybody was excited of this happening (myself included), since it is not on every Sundays that we have the occasion of meeting an apostle. Finally the moment of his speech comes. I was all ears and what he came out from his mouth for more than 20 min was nothing more than gibberish.
But from his gestures it was like he was saying something very important. I looked myself around but nobody was astounded by this as I was, few of them were showing also some signs of understanding moving their heads up and down at the rhythm of those words. Thinking it was me having a problem, I put even more all my attention to the speech, but nothing to do, all his speech didn’t make any sense.
At the end of the meeting I was hearing people saying: “How good his speech was, I feel myself edified. I have really felt the Spirit. What inspiring words…” I was shocked, how could they say these things!
At this point I had the need to know. I didn’t like these dreams, for they were not convenient for me. It could not be possible. Nevertheless in my prayer I engaged myself to know no matter the price to pay would have been. Fear started to take me. What to do? How to do? How to talk to my family? How my mother would have taken all this? And what about all the promises I had made, I was sincere, could I go back from I had promised, I was feeling my truth according to the thing that I knew, but my truth was The Truth? And how to be Christians without being a Mormon?
What would have been of my life?
For me there were only good things in my life. What I was feeling was good, was really good for the Lord? Maybe it was this that Jesus wanted to say when he reproached Peter telling him:”Go away Satan! For you not know the things of the Lord, you have only human thoughts” (Marc 8:33).
I understood the Lord wanted something from me; but what? How could I do it?
I started reading the Mormons books I had with me, maybe I could have found something showing me that all of this was not true, that were just simple dreams with no meaning.
Maybe they were not from God but from the other side. But all I was reading was going in the same sense of my dreams, either it was in the book of Mormon, in the church magazine, in the Sunday school manual…
During this time Max didn’t say anything; he knew that he had to leave me alone or someday I could have reproached him to have influenced me. Anyway it would have been impossible for him to influence me, since too many years in the same culture with the same attitude reinforced by pleasant feelings, would have completely blocked me to other suggestions. No logic, no facts, no men, nothing could have made me feel or seeing things in a different way. And for what at the end? Just to lose my beloved way of living? For him and now I recognize this too, only the Lord could have opened my eyes to see things differently.
And within few days I saw them totally differently, and the most incredible was for me to discover new things that were always being in front of my eyes. How not to see them? Where I was before?
All from the start: the ghost voice with all that it had communicated that turned to be the truth, all the strange coincidences: Max incredible internet contact, my president making me stay in Geneva against my wish, the one-eyed old lady preventing me of a man prepared by the Lord that was waiting for me and how I should have done to detect him, the ring story, the fact that Max was made completely insensible to his illness so he could have meet me again, that he had to be baptized in the Mormon church if not evidently I would have never seen him as a potential husband, that he felt well in this church, and that both of us have fallen in love of each other (even this was forecast by the ghost voice from the very beginning “she is your wife, you are her husband…” ) and all my dreams. Even if we would have wanted to influence all this in one sense or in the other, how could have we done it? If you think it is possible try to do even the half of it.

Only now we could see that all was coherent and that was converging in the same direction from the beginning. And this from the very first ghost voice sentence:

She is your wife, you are her husband, I love her and…you have to protect her from this church

Either everything was wrong or everything was true. I could think no more that only the beginning of this sentence was true. And this only since it would have been convenient for me.


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