I had a dream last night. I’m in an empty parking lot. It’s dark, damp and vast; as if it were night and had just rained. A single, lonely street light in the middle of the lot casts the only illumination through a seemingly endless gloom. The asphalt is cracked and weathered, the lines chipped and faded. Shallow puddles gather here and there, reflecting the light and sending it . . . nowhere.
I wonder to myself what it would look like if this empty parking lot were filled with all the people who have ever wondered about, doubted or questioned their faith, like I have. Slowly, people begin filing in, wandering out from the darkness to take their place under the light. Hmm, I think; interesting but not really the reaction I was envisioning. But then another idea hits me.
What if the parking lot were filled with all the people I have ever wronged?
Instantly the empty parking lot is filled to capacity. I mean standing room only, wall-to-wall people.
Wow! Oooookaaayyy. Again, not quite the reaction I was envisioning. More like what I was hoping for the first time.
The subconscious is a funny ol’ thing, isn’t it?
Slowly, it begins to dawn on me. Maybe I need to speak to these people; apologize to them for whatever offense I’d caused. I think, if I just had a podium or a big raised platform, I could address them all at once. But then I think, no. I need to wade into this huge mass of people. Let it/them surround me, overwhelm me. Talk to each of them individually; find out what it was I did and offer my apologies personally, one-on-one. It’s a scary thought and my heart races. I don’t want to do it, but feel it’s the only thing I can do to set things “right”. Then, just as I’m about to do that, just as I take my first step off the platform and immerse myself in the crowd, I wake up.
I’m shaking, overwhelmed with emotion, fear and trepidation.
You know the strangest part, though?
I also wanted to go back!
I actually wanted to go back into that dream, into that parking lot, face all those people and somehow make amends.
Yet again, not quite the reaction I was envisioning.
The conscience is a funny ol’ thing, isn’t it?