As Terri and I prayed together on top of the mountain on the big island of Hawaii that morning last spring, she received a visual impression of how my heart had been crusted over with a hardness in the first years of our marriage. In her vision, Jesus had his hand on my heart and was weeping over this hardness. We asked the Holy Spirit to show me how that hardness had come within me, That's when I suddenly and clearly remembered back to when I was 13 and 14. I saw the influence that Robert and Atlas Shrugged' had upon me as an insecure teen who had always thrived on appreciation and attention. I was very vulnerable to the affirmation that Robert freely offered me due to the relational and emotional distance from my Dad. (This was my trauma - the "type A" kind - that has to do with not getting what we need to develop a healthy soul.) As a result, I took in a very cold, calculated, heady and overly-objective view of God, life and relationships. (Please know that I do not hold anything against poor Robert. I have only thoughts of good toward him. Though brilliant, he too was also an unaffirmed and insecure young man at the time!)
We asked the Lord, as we do in the "Immanuel Process", where he was in the traumatic scene (after recalling a time or memory of appreciation as a "home base"). I did not get an answer that day. In fact, it wasn't until an early morning this past September that I received my insight, which came in a flash of God's grace.
I was having a spiritual dream and I saw the cover of the Atlas Shrugged book upon which Atlas is pictured as having the world upon his shoulders. Suddenly, the image animated and Atlas shrugged the globe off of himself and it rolled to the edge of the cover and began to fall off. Then the scene froze and I was taken back in my dream to actual event in my life that happened with I was 6 or 7. I was in the passenger side seat of a car driven by a family friend from the town in Michigan in which my mother grew up. We visited Coldwater very often to see my grandparents. John was the husband of one of my Mom's closest friends. He was a free-spirited artsy kind of adult male. I really hadn't been around men like this before. My brother and John's two sons were in the back seat. Suddenly, he blurted out, "I want to sing you boys a song." He turned and looked at me in the eyes and belted out the song, "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands".
I had never heard this song before, but I never forgot the tune or the words. This song left an indelible imprint on me. In the dream, a voice said to me, "Michael, I was in the car with you that day...that's why you remember it so well. I knew what was going to happen to you as a young teen and I want you to know that I had you covered long before then and that I would turn the attack that would later come upon you to serve my purposes." Then I saw the first scene of the dream and it activated again. As Atlas' globe fell of the edge of the book, it landed in two giant hands that I knew were the hands of Jesus. Wow!
Whereas Atlas finally and coldly shrugs off the weight of the world in the view of the objectivist, Jesus Christ is gladly and compassionately there to catch it in His capable hands, as though it were a Nerf ball. He caught me even before I fell into the deception of my youth. He catches you too. He's got the whole world in his hands! (Note: Since that dream in September, I have been writing a lot of poetry and shedding a lot of tears - mostly from joy and gratitude!)
A VOICE OF HOPE
Michael Sullivant's Blog
I am a child of God, husband, father, grandfather, spiritual father, author, speaker and hope coach.