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Doris J. Grace

Dreams Do Come True

My son's nightmare saved my life—and revived his soul.

I will never forget that March morning in 1996. Just as I was preparing to drive to the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to pick up my husband, who was coming in on a flight from South Korea after a long missions trip, the phone rang. It was from my son, Tom, who was then 34.

"Mom," he said, "please be extra careful on the freeway this morning. It's still dark, and there are fog patches." I assured him that I'm always careful when driving the freeways. "I know you are," said Tom. "It's just that I had a nightmare. I dreamt that when you were driving to pick up Dad, something hit your windshield and you lost control of the car and crashed into other cars around you."

"Oh, Tom, what a terrible dream," I said. "But don't worry about me. I'll be all right."

"But Mom, promise me you'll leave a little earlier and drive very carefully."

"I will, but don't worry. I am sure you just had a bad dream."

As I backed out of the driveway, I said a quick prayer for myself—and for Tom. He clearly had been shaken by that dream, since he had called me when he normally would have been asleep.

I suspected those kinds of dreams came from an overheated imagination, and perhaps unconscious expressions of personal fears. But, to assure my son, I promised him I would call him when I returned home with his dad.

Crisis on the freeway

About 45 minutes after leaving home, I was preparing to transition onto another freeway when suddenly, out of nowhere, I heard a horrendous noise that sounded like a gunshot going off beside my head. An unidentified object had slammed into my windshield.

And then I felt it.

Splintered pieces of shattered glass were flying into my face, hair, and mouth.

Trembling like a leaf and spitting glass pellets out of my mouth, I clung desperately to the steering wheel in an effort to keep the car under control and slowly guided the vehicle to the side of the road. Peering out of my side window I looked for some sign of abnormality. Cars of all shapes and sizes were speeding past me. I could see nothing unusual, and no one seemed to be paying much attention to me with my blown-out windshield. It was like any "normal" morning on a southern California freeway. Cautiously, I made my way back onto the road and continued on to the airport.

When I arrived at lax and examined my car more closely, I discovered that besides the shattered glass, the windshield frame was bent and there was a six-inch slice in the roof that looked like a can opener had ripped into it. But more disturbing was the large hole in the windshield. It was just above the level of my forehead.

Up until the minute my husband, Dick, cleared customs and met me, I had been able to keep my emotions under control. But the moment we embraced, I began to shake uncontrollably. Dick assumed it was because I was so happy to see him.

As we walked toward the parking garage, I told him about the accident. He was horrified to see the condition of the car and the little piles of shattered glass by the driver's door that had fallen off my lap when I had exited the car.

As soon as we arrived home, I phoned Tom.

"Son, you'll never believe what happened to me on the way to the airport..."

As I related my story, all I could hear was a grand silence. Tom was literally speechless.

"Tom, I believe you were God's messenger today," I told him. "The Lord most certainly sent me a warning through your dream."

More than luck

The next day, when the auto-shop repairman looked at the car, his jaw dropped in disbelief.

"Lady, you were very lucky," he said. "From the look of this impact, you should have lost control of this car."

He explained that whatever hit my car had slammed into the windshield frame first, bounced off the windshield just above my forehead, and then hit the roof.

"If it had hit the windshield first," he added, "it would have penetrated directly into your head and you wouldn't be here today."

I smiled and said, "Luck had nothing to do with it."

In my heart I knew it was all about a loving, gracious Lord. God protected me. But I believe He also wanted to strengthen the faith of my son, who at that time saw no need for God in his life. The irony was that, in order to wake him up from his own self-sufficiency, God gave him a nightmare. A nightmare that not only helped save my life, but that gave my son a new vision of reality and brought him back to the Lord. Sometimes dreams do come true.

Doris J. Grace is a writer living in California.

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