Since there was only the audio sermon available, it was all the more reason to close my eyes while being comfortably ensconced beneath a fleece blanket as the snow came falling down.
Little did I know the lesson at First Baptist Church in New Richmond for Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020, was about dreams.
Fortunately, the “fiery furnace” was not the main topic of discussion — although I seem to recall a colorful Sunday school book with smiles amidst unscorched beards.
Pastor Jerry talked about the book of Daniel and the “journey to humility.” The question we’re asked to consider is: Who is on the throne of our life? He later stated, “We see a greater greatness when we are kneeling.”
The story is about a king not sleeping. Pastor said, “When the king doesn’t sleep nobody sleeps.” The kitchen has to be ready in case he wants a snack, the stable has to be alert in case he wants a ride through the orchards, the musicians need to be warming up should he request a lullaby.
“Humility” pastor said, “starts with being uneasy.”
What King Nebuchadnezzar did was call a meeting. When wise Daniel arrived, his counsel was sought. The king knew him as one who humbly deferred to a higher power.
We were told “behold” means to really pay attention — “get everything else out of your mind.” Behold, the dream was about a big, beautiful, benevolent tree. It was all rather confusing for those trying to interpret it. In the dream a wide-awake holy “watcher”descended from heaven with the message to chop it down. As expansive and life-giving as the tree was it was becoming an object of worship, obscuring the true source — not the best plan for the really long term, as in from generation to generation. The tree represented the rule of the earthy king, whom God had put in power by heavenly decree.
The rather lengthy lesson (more parts to come) proclaims that when human rulers gain personal knowledge of their creator having true dominion over all, then they realize that “serving others with compassion” is what their earthly responsibility is all about.