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Do prophetic dreams still happen?

It was the spring of 1994. We had sensed God telling us to move out of south Florida. Didn’t have any idea where he wanted us to move, but we knew he wanted us to step out in faith. So we put our house on the market.   We were nervous – would it sell? Or what if it sold and we had to leav…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
It was the spring of 1994. We had sensed God telling us to move out of south Florida. Didn’t have any idea where he wanted us to move, but we knew he wanted us to step out in faith. So we put our house on the market.
We were nervous – would it sell? Or what if it sold and we had to leave right away, where would we move? We didn’t even have a town in mind.
Some people came to check out our home. Then our fears were realized – a few weeks went by and one couple loved it. They’d buy it immediately if we could move out.
Yikes! What to do? Karen and I and our five children would be homeless. We prayed and, feeling like God wanted us to keep walking in faith, we agreed to their terms.
Now the reality of our situation hit Karen and I: We would have to leave and go somewhere with all of our kids and furniture in just a few short weeks. As we prayed, we thought God might be directing us to move near Atlanta, but still didn’t know what town. We liked Gainesville, but then Rome or Athens (Georgia, not Europe) had their attractions as well.
We’d already looked around Gainesville, but couldn’t find what we were looking for. Our budget was tight and we felt like building on some land would be the best option.
A week went by, then two weeks. With all these question marks and the clock ticking down, Karen was starting to get antsy. One night as we were going to bed she said, “We really need God to show us what to do. How about if we pray that he gives us a dream?”
“Great idea,” I replied. “I’ll pray that God gives you the dream tonight.”
“No, you’re the leader of the family, I’m praying that God gives you the dream tonight.” So, saying, Karen prayed and we both went to sleep.
About 6 a.m. the following morning I woke up from a dream, “Karen, wake up, I just had the dream!”
“What are you talking about?” She muttered from under the pillow.
“The dream you prayed for – I had it! There was a guy named Tom that we bought the property from and a big tower behind the house.”
Who knew if the dream was legit or not – I was just glad I had it. I wrote out the details of the dream in my journal and kept living my life.
A week later, through a series of miracles, I found exactly the right property in Gainesville. But I was on a quick visit and didn’t have time to meet with the owner and so, had to return to Florida without making an offer. The next week, we loaded up the U-haul and drove back. I parked the truck out of sight and negotiated with the owner and he accepted our price.
The funny thing is, in all the commotion, I completely forgot about the dream.
Years later, I was reading my journal and bam! I connected the dots – we had in fact bought the property from a guy named Tom! And what about the tower? Though there wasn’t one at the time, years after our move, the telephone company built a huge tower near an adjoining property.
Pretty wild, huh? You can draw your own conclusions about God giving us prophetic dreams or not, but after experiencing that, it’s a settled issue for the Barnes family.
I don’t know why people struggle and think only flaky people say they have dreams from God. We see prophetic dreams scattered throughout the Bible. Jacob saw a ladder. Peter saw a table cloth. Paul saw a man from Macedonia. This site estimates that a third of what we read in the Bible relates to a vision or a dream. God promises us in the book of Acts that in the last days, we’ll dream dreams and see visions. It’s supposed to be normal for people who follow Jesus.
So many people I know have had their lives impacted by dreams from God. And yes, some of them are flaky. So here’s where I come out on the subject: My guess about the people who don’t believe God speaks through dreams is this: It’s not that he isn’t speaking, but just that they aren’t listening.
We have to pay attention to our dreams. Sometimes we have to go looking for them as Karen and I did.
Have you had a dream from God that impacted your life? Do you think he still speaks that way?

Comments (13)

  • If prophetic dreams and visions are for the flaky people then consider me a big bowl of corn flakes because one of the ways God speaks to me is through dreams and visions. In fact, every dream “of God” I’ve ever had I can still remember as it it happened last night.

    I’m glad you and your wife prayed for help that night and I’m glad that you recognized the word from God when it came. We need to rely on Him in all of our decisions.

    May God continue to bless your life.

  • As my wife and I were living in America, I had grown desperate for God to speak about our next steps. We were fasting and praying together for a couple of days. At the time I was working in the business world but had been feeling a call to work in another nation in the 10/40 window for many years. On the last day of the fast I asked my wife if she had heard anything. She replied, “Yes, I had a dream.” “Tell me”! I said, but she said that I would have to hear it from God if it was really from him. So, I sat back and closed my eyes and prayed (kind of jokingly), “Ok, Holy Spirit what did you tell my wife”? I opened my eyes and out of my mouth came, “Thailand in March.” My wife almost dropped our son. She said, “How did you know that”! “God just told me”! She had just had a dream that we were telling everyone in our church that we were going to Thailand in March. We brought our desire to visit Thailand to our leaders but didn’t tell them about the dream. They said they would support it if our whole family went. My kids were really young at the time. They said, “when do you want to go”? We said, “How about March”? and they said ok! We visited Thailand and exactly one year later we had sold everything and moved to Thailand…in March. This March (2012) will have been three years since we moved here and four years since we visited. God still speaks. “Draw near to me and I will draw near to you” says the Lord!

  • A very good and informative article indeed . It helps me a lot to enhance my knowledge, I really like the way the writer presented his views. Bye!

  • Great website!! Praise God… I have had two dreams, and I know that they were messages from Him. Most dreams are quickly forgotten (one or two minutes upon wakening). Those from God will be remembered forever.
    The Holy Spirit is leading me daily. Many of my questions about specific Bible verses are being answered very quickly.
    One question that I need guidance with was raised by Dr. Charles Stanley– In Touch, TV program on September 18, 2011. You can access this on the In Touch web site. On that program, I believe that he said that we only have access to God when we accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. All of us have sinned, and have come short of the Glory of God. Dr. Stanley asked: “Upon what basis can you go to God the Father and get your prayers answered? Our sins have separated us from God.” Jesus said No one goes to the Father except by Me.
    Can the prayers of the unsaved sinner ever be answered by God?

  • God has given me several dreams as well as other family members. When I was 50 years old my husband had a dream that I had a baby boy. Soon after, I had a dream I had a baby boy. Then my sister called saying she dreamt I had a baby boy! I had no idea why we were having these dreams. Was I going to be like Sarah and have a baby late in life??

    I remember telling my high school son that we were having these dreams and I said, “If I do have another son, I’m going to name him Joshua.”

    The next week end I got a call from a woman saying she was the one who adopted my baby boy when I was 19 when my baby was an infant! (It had been a closed adoption, which she had a hard time opening). But, she soon came to my house and we talked all about his life growing up with them and later my son and I met and my grandson, whose name is Joshua!

  • Hey Seth,

    I have always wanted to believe that God could speak, and speak through prophetic dreams. My problem had always been when I thought there was a leading from God I would not follow through to see if it was reality out of fear. Fear I believe has been the inhibitor from me experiencing much more of God when it comes to his movement in my life. I had a vision actually with you and several others last summer during our time talking about how to plant the kingdom. It was a blessing to be able to share my fears and pain and realize it was God speaking.

    I saw friends and family at church in chains and seeing jesus set them free. I was lead to Gal 5:1.. I went home and waited to see what would happen. It was then that God put me in a place of fear, leave my ministry job… trust him to start a missional community that sets people free to experince community living in the freedom of Christ, to seek the kingdom together.

    So… I did, several families had approached us to start a new spiritual community and they would support us. We did, it grew attacking the misfits and seeking. God has done far more than I would have ever imagined. People have been set free from spiritual bondage, people have come to christ, marriages have been healed, children have been adopted, wells have been dug in africa, we are making a real impact on our community for christ that would have otherwise been impossible in our position previously.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

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