I was raised to believe that God does not speak through dreams. I'm so blessed that I know differently today. For those of you who believe that God does speak through dreams, please take a moment and recall the life of Joseph.
Joseph was given some really awesome dreams as a young man. But, when he told his brothers about his dreams they got really upset! He told them about dreaming of bundles of wheat, the sun, the moon and 11 stars bowing before him (take a moment and read Genesis 37:5-10). Even his father, Jacob, rebuked him. No one liked the idea of Joseph being positioned above them. I would have probably been upset also if I were one of Joseph's family! But later his father reconsidered the entire matter.
I believe that when God speaks to us through dreams we need to both "consider the matter," and at times even "ponder" them. I have had some really interesting dreams... but imagine having dreams like Joseph's! In Psalm 105:19b it says that "...the word of the Lord tried him" until Joseph's dreams actually came to pass. I believe that many of our dreams are "trying us" just as they did Joseph.
Having God-given Dreams
Our God given dreams will be tested and tried, just as Joseph's did him. Yet, if God gave you a dream then know He will bring it to pass! The word "tried" is a Hebrew word that has a very interesting meaning. Some of the words used to define being "tried" are " purged," "cast." "refine," "(make)pure," and "purge away." When observing the full translation as to how dreams might "try" us we can easily conclude by this definition that it is similar to a goldsmith purifying metals and refining them with intense heat. In other words, Joseph's dreams purified his heart and motives and he was being refined by the hand of God until his time came to fulfill his dreams.
When I think about God's timing the story of Joseph encourages me. How? Well, I'll just bet that you have some dreams also that have not come to pass. Maybe, like myself, you have tucked away deep in your heart several promises God has spoken through dreams. Don't be discouraged! Know that God is refining you and preparing you for a "suddenly!" Yes, suddenlies do happen. Just like Joseph- in prison one day and in the palace the next- your dreams will come to pass!
God's Intentions Through Dreams
There are various reasons why God gives us dreams. In the above paragraphs you read about how the timing of the fulfillment of a dream is meant to purify us and prepare us. Another very important reason that God gives us dreams is to reveal the condition of our own hearts. If you recall, Daniel told King Nebuchadnezzar that God was giving him dreams to reveal the king's pride and to save his soul from the pit. (Read Job 33:14-18).