Over the past couple of years, I have a sporadically reoccurring dream that never made sense. The situations are never quite the same, but the emotions I feel are. Every dream shares the same fundamental elements.
In each dream, there is a woman I’m familiar with but can’t quite make out who she is. I’m drawn to her and feel a sense of guilt and shame because I also realize I have a wife and kids. Sometimes I have conversations with her and tell her I have a family and that this will never be. On other occasions, I feel I want to run away and start something new.
Today I had a similar dream, but after so many years, something new came up. As I was wrapping up some work for a client, she approached me, asking me for help. She was asking me to help her sort and look through her financial records as she was in the process of getting a divorce. As I meticulously looked through her file, it looked more like a scrapbook than financial records.
Finally, after what seemed like a long time, I showed her there were no financial records in the file and felt like a hero for helping her. Here’s the twist; as I close the binder, my teenage son comes into the room crying that I’ve forgotten about him in the car. Devasted, I turn around and wake up.
At that moment, it hit me like a ton of bricks. After so many years of futile attempts at figuring this out, God answered my prayers and revealed these dreams’ meanings. These dreams represent my affair with work. Unintentionally, I’ve dedicated so much time to her that, at times, I’ve neglected my family.
I immediately confessed my sin, thanked God for this conviction, and set-up to make it right.
This story reminds me of how all of us, as men, may unintentionally have an affair. Whether it’s work, money, sport, or anything else, we place all of our time and attention on more than our families. Today take an inventory of your life to see who or how you’re seeking fulfillment.
Answer and Journal the Following
Read and meditate on Proverbs 7:21-27.
Who or what are you spending more time with to the detriment of your family life? Pray and ask God for the Holy Spirit for conviction.
Determine how you focus on your family. What is your plan of action within the next week, month, year?
Bonus: Share this with a fellow brother.