As I grew older the dreams continued. I decided not to say anything else to anyone until I understood the dreams a little more. Some nights I could remember my dreams other days I woke up knowing I had dreamed but not fully remembering what exactly I had dreamed about.
The man’s face from my first dream always remained a clear image in my head. It seemed that whenever his features started to blur in my mind I dreamed of him again.
By the time I was 15 years old a few suitors had already come asking my parents for my hand in marriage. Many of them were wealthy and some even attractive however, against the custom of the time my parents asked my opinion and I turned all the suitors down. I loved my family very much and I had no desire to leave them especially because I felt God was trying to tell me something. I wanted to decode God’s message to me before I agreed to marriage. I was content with remaining at home until such time. I decided all other decisions would be put on hold until I knew the meaning of my dreams. Having a choice as to agreeing who I would marry was a privilege few women in my time experienced. Many thought I was taking advantage of this rare opportunity.
My parents loved me very much and tried to be patient with me but as my 16th birthday drew nearer and girls younger than I were being given away in marriage my mother started to fear what would become of me. She went to my father and asked him to talk to me. One evening as my father sat down with my brother and I telling us stories of God’s work and the order of things he looked at me with a serious and loving face and said
“Dear daughter of mine. What is keeping you here with us?”
“Father,” I began “Does God only talk to men?”
My father was surprised at my question, as was my brother who watched the dialogue between my father and I intently. My father laughed at my audacity and looked at my brother and said
“Your sister has quite the inquiring mind.”
My brother Laban laughed nervously not knowing what was going to happen next. I disliked our tradition of men talking about women who were present as if they weren’t there and so I repeated my question.
“Father, does God only speak to men?”
Laban shot me a look that warned me to be careful not to over step my place which was already larger than that for most women. My father took notice and addressed him first.
“It’s okay Laban. I’ve told you both before that God speaks to whomever He chooses.”
“Yes,” I said “But does he only choose men?”
My father looked at me with loving concern.
“God speaks to whomever He chooses and all they need is but ears to hear what He is saying to them. Now tell me, what is it that is troubling my daughter?”
I looked at Laban then back at my father. Their looks were soft with love.
“How would I know if God were talking to me?”
“To you?” Laban said surprised!
My father ignored his outburst and said, “God is a spirit. You would feel Him moving on your heart.”
Suddenly aware of how crazy I may have sounded to them i lowered my eyes.
“I…I feel Him Father.”
My father raised an eyebrow. “Do you?”
“Yes”, I whispered.
“Well tell us. How is He speaking to you. What is He saying?”
Before this time I had never mentioned my dreams to either my father or my brother and I realized that now was the time.
“Forgive me my father and my brother. I don’t mean to bring dishonor on this family by rejecting the many suitors that have asked for my hand but God is speaking to me, through my dreams…”
“Your dreams?” My Father asked.
“Yes. Dreams. I’m not sure what they mean but, if it so pleases my family to be patient with me once more I beseech you allow me the time to find out what it is God is saying.”
“Dreams,” my father repeated.
Laban looked at me curiously and asked “What kind of dreams?”
“Yes, what kind,” my father echoed,”And how long have you had them?”