Ann Marsh has always been a dreamer. Dreams seemed to speak to her, but in a language she didn't immediately understand.
"Dreams are just one way that God still speaks to us today," said Mrs. Marsh, who has taken courses in biblically based dream interpretation from Streams International, a ministry in Nashua, N.H.
The courses have helped her understand her own and others' dreams.
"If we don't understand the message, it will not bear any fruit," said Mrs. Marsh, who is working toward a certification as a dream interpreter from Streams.
She will lead a seminar on dream interpretation from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 21, at Fountain of Life Fellowship, 2799 Whiskey Road in Aiken.
"We are such a left-brained society, we dismiss these ways God speaks to us and take it for granted," Mrs. Marsh said. She asks that people write down their dreams and bring them to the talk, though not all will be a divine message.
For those who say they don't dream, "It could be that (God) just chooses to communicate with them in another way," she said.
"First and foremost, above everything else, God communicates to us through his written word and that is available to everyone," Mrs. Marsh said."
Interpretations can come in many ways. Symbols can have different meanings, depending on context, the dreamer and their experiences.
"A dream about a dog is positive to me, but for someone who was bitten or mauled as a child, it could be negative," Mrs. Marsh said, adding that no one can interpret every dream. "You are only going to get it when God reveals it to you."
Not every dream is positive or from God, she said.
"Some come from Satan, some from your own mind," she said. While Satan uses nightmares to instill fear, other nondivine dreams might not be necessarily bad, she said.
"It may show you things in yourself that need improvement or things that are strengths," Mrs. Marsh said.
If people have trouble remembering their dreams, there are memory exercises that can help their recall. Sometimes searching for an answer to a dream can teach even more than the meaning of the dream itself.
"But every dream message needs to be tested. It would be a mistake to live by your dreams," she said.
For more information, see the Web site www.streamsministries.com.
Reach Virginia Norton at 823-3336 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Search for meaning
When Ann Marsh leads a seminar, she invites people to share their dreams with her. One woman said that she repeatedly dreamed about visiting her daughter's new house. They entered room after room of beautiful furnishings, some antique, others so new they were still waiting to be arranged.Interpretation: Mrs. Marsh linked the dream to John 14:2-3 and Isaiah 61:2-4. Elements in the dream carried symbolism. The new house represented a new spiritual move of God. The dream told Mrs. Marsh that just as the layout and foundation were God's doing, he would lead the daughter to discover new gifts and ministries.