When Angels Appear in Your Dreams
Have I been contacted by an angel if I dreamed it? Is my guardian angel bringing a message to me while I sleep?
Here are some guidelines I have developed as a result of my study of the Bible, my postgraduate work in dreams at the Yale Divinity School, and my talks with people about their experiences.
- The result of the dream will draw attention to God more than the angel. Angels are God’s messengers and their purpose is always to bring glory to God, not to themselves.
- The dreams usually leave a person with feelings of awe and wonder and that God is loving. This is true even when the angel appears to a person who is rebelling against God and is deep in sin. The angel may appear to judge and to scare a person straight. Often, when this occurs, the angel does not even give a message in words, but the experience of God’s presence is shattering and life-transforming and points to a God who cares deeply.
- Is this dream sensible or illogical? We need to use common sense. While a dream or a vision may come from God and be a positive life-changing event, the dream may also come from images buried in our subconscious. God does not send his angels to tell us silly or terrible things. It is always wise to share your experience with a trusted member of your faith community. Sharing with another person helps us evaluate the authenticity of what may be an angelic encounter.
- Does this dream contradict what is taught in the Bible? God does not contradict himself. See my past column: Good Angels, Bad Angels.
- Does this encounter leave you more renewed and more resolved to serve God? If is the encounter is genuine it will move you to love God more deeply and to live out your faith more consistently.