1. (MARIA: YOU HAD A DREAM ABOUT BETHLEHEM LAST NIGHT?) You folks don't realise it, but I know her psychology. She's pulling a fast one here. She knows I haven't had time to record this dream yet, so she figures if we've got to sit here with all this going on (at Family dinner), we might as well make the time count & I might as well record that dream!—Ha!
2. WELL, IT WAS A REALLY FUNNY DREAM & THERE'S NOTHING SECRET ABOUT IT OR ANYTHING, SO DO YOU WANT TO TAKE TIME TO HEAR IT? (Family: Yes!) It was a very little short dream, really nothing. I was thinking about recording it today, but sometimes I kind of hate to record them until I get the answer of what it means. Sometimes I wonder why I even remember it at all, but if it comes very vividly just before I wake up & it's still very strong, then I usually know the Lord wants me to remember it.—If He's made me remember it, which is unusual.
3. YOU KNOW, I GO MANY MANY NIGHTS WITH NO DREAMS AT ALL, SO I'M NOT ALWAYS A DREAMER & ALWAYS DREAMING DREAMS. In fact‚ I haven't had as many lately as I used to have, because you don't need them or we don't need them or I don't need them or something. I don't even know that this one's all that important, except I realised afterward that it does have a symbolic significance. I had it this morning just before I woke up. I always have those significant ones that I remember vividly just before I wake up. It was in the night, all right, but early morning.
4. I WAS THINKING, "WELL, HERE WE ARE IN THE FIRST PART OF THE YEAR." Sometimes we sort of look backward at our history & at least don't forget the past entirely, but thank God we made it! We've come this far by grace, by faith‚ & we've got a lot to be thankful for. I'm thankful 1983 is over & we've accomplished so much. I'm thankful we don't have to live it again!
5. SOME PEOPLE SAY,
"OH THAT I WERE YOUNG AGAIN!
TURN BACKWARD, TURN BACKWARD, O TIME, IN YOUR FLIGHT
AND MAKE ME A CHILD ONCE AGAIN FOR TONIGHT!"
—BUT NOT ME! I don't want to have to live through all that again. I've been through all those grades & I don't want to have to get sent back, I'm looking forward to graduation! I've told many a young person I've met in the World & the System & down in Tenerife I used to tell'm that too, that I am at the happiest time of life, I'm having more fun now than I ever had. Really! My job is just about done‚ the hardest part of my life is over, most of my work is accomplished & I get to see the pay-off in all that I have accomplished. Old age is the greatest time of life! If you've lived a good life & you've lived it for the Lord & accomplished something & you see good fruit, it's the best time of life!
6. IT'S JUST THE OTHER WAY AROUND WITH PEOPLE OF THE WORLD & THE DEVIL'S OLD FOLKS—THERE ARE NO HAPPY DEVIL'S OLD FOLKS. They have nothing but sorrow & they even commit suicide & all kinds of horrible things!—Because what have they got to be thankful for? What have they got to look back on that they've accomplished or done any good to the World? And they're miserable & they're sick & everything is wrong with them & all kinds of things. They're usually a miserable bunch.
7. BUT CHRISTIANS, IF THEY'VE REALLY SERVED THE LORD & HAVE BEEN FRUITFUL & FAITHFUL, HAVE GOT SO MUCH TO BE THANKFUL FOR, so much to look back on & thank God that it happened & thank God they did it‚ but they thank God it's over! (Coughs.)—Including this cold! It's just about over & I'm almost back to my usual level of hockin' & spittin'. So sometimes you look back & you can sort of be thankful.
8. I DON'T KNOW WHETHER I'LL GET ANY MORE MEANING OUT OF THE DREAM, but since she wants me to tell it, maybe this is as good a time as any. Would you like to get something hot off the griddle? (Family: Yes!) You're probably going to be sorry after I tell it, because it's such a funny little dream.
9. WE WERE SITTING THERE—MY MOTHER, MOTHER EVE, TECHI & I DON'T KNOW HOW MANY OTHER PEOPLE IN OUR LITTLE GROUP—ALL WAITING ON THESE BENCHES. Have you ever been to one of those National Parks where they have an area where you sit & wait on the benches till you're taken on a tour through the cave or through the woods or whatever it is? Each new group accumulates in this waiting area outdoors on these benches waiting to be led through whatever it is that they're to see.
10. WE WERE WAITING THERE UNTIL THE PRECEDING GROUP GOT BACK WITH THE GUIDE & UNTIL THEY CALLED THAT THEY WERE READY FOR THE NEXT TOUR & WOULD THROW OPEN THE GATE. The waiting area was here like this & there was a little low fence over there with a little gate about as far from me as you are, Honey. You're quite a gate, God bless you! ILY! The person regulating the tour was standing there at the gate & would let the first group out & then call us that it was time to go & let us in the gate. Well‚ come to think of it, I don't know if I saw a group come back. I don't really remember anybody coming out, they must have gone on someplace or come out some other gate or something.
11. ANYWAY, IT WAS SOME KIND OF A TOUR IN ISRAEL, I THINK IT WAS BETHLEHEM.—Why Bethlehem, I don't know. Beyond the gate was this nice curved little road like they have in Palestine, around this low hill & off into this village in the distance.—Beautiful scenery, beautiful setting, & we were sitting there waiting for the tour. There was a tour bus which we would board on the other side of the gate & it took us up the road to whatever we were going to see. I know you're going to think I'm crazy & wonder why I ever tell such crazy dreams when I don't even know what it's about or what it's for myself!
12. I WAS SITTING THERE, & WHY I SHOULD BE SITTING WITH MY BACK TO THE GATE I DON'T KNOW! Usually I want to sit where I can keep an eye on the gate & jump up & be the first one in line or something. At bus stations & train depots, whatever, I used to sit as close to the door as possible so the minute they called it I was—whssst—the first shot through the door!
13. BUT I NEVER WANTED TO BE THE FIRST ONE TO STAND UP TO GET OFF THE TRAIN OR EVEN THE PLANE, I USED TO THINK THAT WAS THE SILLIEST THING! On the bus or the plane or the train, it always happens, the minute it gets there & stops at the station, everybody stands up. Then they have to stand up in line for 15 or 20 minutes waiting to get out. I used to think, "Now why should I stand up waiting to get out? Why should I stand up & wait to be in a hurry?" So I would just sit there & everybody would look at me like I was some kind of weirdo: "Well, maybe he's crippled‚ maybe he can't stand up. Maybe he's waiting to be carried out." I'd just sit there with my overcoat on my arm & my umbrella & my suitcase on the seat ready to go. I thought, "Why should I be standing up all this time, I'm not going to get out any sooner." I was seldom in the front part of the bus because I didn't believe in riding up front. That's the first to hit. I always rode about halfway back & on the right side, the safest place on the bus, near an emergency exit if possible.
14. WELL‚ I DON'T KNOW WHY I WAS IN THE ROW ALMOST FURTHEST FROM THE GATE WITH MY BACK TO THE GATE, but when they called that it was time for the next tour, I got up‚ & my Mother—she's quite a little Jewish pusher—she forged ahead toward the gate with Mother Eve right behind her. But the one who really dove through the crowd was Techi! I never saw the like, she just dove through the crowd, that's about the only way I can express it, with her hair flying out behind her! She just dove through the crowd! She just zoomed like a wedge & she was going to hit that gate & get through there as fast as she could! She passed up Grandmother & Mother Eve & scrambled on the bus, & of course like Techi usually does, saving seats for us.
15. I WAS NOT ALL THAT ANXIOUS FOR THIS TOUR BUSINESS—YOU KNOW HOW I AM ABOUT SIGHT-SEEING—BUT THEY ALL CLAMBERED ON & BY THE TIME I GOT ON THEY WERE ALL THERE & MOST OF THE PEOPLE TOO. They'd saved me a seat so I sat down with them & the bus took off & we were on our way. It was some kind of Holy Land tour & it impressed me that maybe it was Bethlehem for some reason, because it was sort of a small town‚ it wasn't Jerusalem. It was quite a little distance apparently because the bus came to this first stop & somehow I remembered that there was this extra stop.
16. I'M THE GUY WHO USUALLY REALLY LISTENS TO INSTRUCTIONS & I'm the kind of a guy who won't touch the tape recorder until I read the whole book & I won't touch the new mechanical thing until I've read the instructions. We have some in our Family here who grab it & start flipping switches & experimenting with it first & never bother with the instruction book until there's something they can't figure out & "Why does it do this or why does it do that & why doesn't it?" Then I ask'm, "Well, have you read the book?" Oh no, of course they never had time to read the book. So I'm the guy who always reads the books. I'm the guy who always finds out the instructions & hears the information & gets the announcements straight if possible.
17. SO I HAD SOMEHOW HEARD THAT THE FIRST STOP WAS JUST A SHORT STOP ON THE WAY‚ AT SOME LITTLE VILLAGE WHICH WAS NOT BY ANY MEANS WHERE YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO GET OFF TO TAKE THE WALKING TOUR. And why I should remember the name of that stop, I don't know. I don't even understand why it should have any significance, but it was Gauguin. I thought about that name after waking up, & the only Gauguin I can ever remember was the French artist who worked in Tahiti & drew all the nude native girls. All I could think of, of all things, was that he was a sex artist & from the South Seas, famous for his paintings of native girls which became very popular in Paris in those days, somewhere around the turn of the century. He was fairly realistic in his beautiful paintings & sketches of these gorgeous nude native girls of Tahiti. He had a very sad life, a sad story, & I can't tell you the whole thing now.
18. THE NAME GAUGUIN ALMOST STANDS FOR SEX BECAUSE HE WAS A VERY SEXY GUY, A SEXY ARTIST! He lived with these girls or he hired them—not only paid'm for pictures but other things too—& they kept house for him & fell in love with him. Then he'd get tired of them & throw them out one by one & I think finally he wound up dying of syphilis or something, a sad ending in the South Seas. He was one of the few artists who was appreciated & recognised at least before he died, because his pictures were quite popular & that's the way he earned his living. He made several trips to Tahiti. We saw a very interesting documentary on him once, a series.
19. SO THAT'S THE ONLY TIME I EVER HEARD THAT NAME BEFORE & I'VE HARDLY EVER THOUGHT OF IT SINCE THEN—GAUGUIN. I don't know enough Hebrew to know whether that's a Hebrew word or not‚ I don't even know if there's a village of any kind in Israel by that name. Maybe it's got some greater significance.
20. ABOUT ALL I COULD THINK OF IT WAS—THE FIRST STOP WAS SEX! And if this is any kind of an odyssey of the Family illustrated here, I'll tell you, that was certainly one of our first emphases & we made a lot of progress in that direction in the early days!
21. I REMEMBER FIRST OF ALL WHEN WE'D FIRST BOARDED THE BUS MY MOTHER'D PLOWED ON THROUGH THE GATE & I thought, "Well, she shouldn't be going alone in there & taking off like that. She's the oldest one of us & she might get lost or something!" She was always doing funny things & being absent-minded & getting lost & whatnot. She was always pushing ahead, you know, aggressive & right up front somewhere, typically Jewish! I thought, "She's apt to get lost." But I got on the bus & found she was on the bus‚ so that was fine, thank the Lord.
22. SHE WAS ALWAYS KIND OF HARD TO KEEP TRACK OF—LIKE THAT TIME I TOLD YOU ABOUT WHERE SHE RUSHED INTO A DEPARTMENT STORE that occupied a whole block downtown & had a lot of entrances on all four streets, & she wanted to know which way she had come in so she'd know how to get back to the railroad station quick to catch the next train. She rushed up to the floor walker & said, "Which door did I come in?" He said, "My God, I've been asked every kind of a question today, now this woman wants to know which door she came in!" And then she explained, "Well, which direction is the railroad station?—That's the door I came in & that's where I want to go!"—And he told her. She was always full of funny stories about all the funny things she did. Well, my Mother was funny. If you think I'm funny, she was funnier! At least I'm not quite as absent-minded as she was. She was always getting herself into all kinds of scrapes‚ & it was a tale, & she enjoyed a good joke on herself.
23. SO SHE WAS SAFELY ON THE BUS, BUT OH, HORROR OF HORRORS‚ AFTER THIS GAUGUIN STOP I LOOKED AROUND & NO MOTHER & NO MOTHER EVE, THEY'D BOTH GOTTEN OFF THERE! Maybe that's significant. Maybe that's where we parted company‚ when we got so sexy! That really is just about what happened. I said, "Well, the tour's not over yet. We're supposed to stay on this bus till we get where we're going & then get off!" So I insisted on staying on the bus. There used to be an old song about that‚ "Tie a yellow ribbon," etc., "I'll stay on the bus & forget about us."—You remember that old song.
24. SO ANYWAY, I WAS ON THE BUS & I INSISTED ON STAYING ON THE BUS. And somehow or another Maria was there too & Techi was there & I'm sure the rest of you were but you just didn't impress me. So we forged right on ahead & apparently must have gone to the end of the line, because I don't remember anything after that. I especially remember Techi diving through that crowd, she wanted to get there first. Then I remember my Mother wandering off & then I remember I yelled out of the window, I thought maybe they might hear me‚ "This isn't where you're supposed to get off!" But Mother & Eve were gone, they got off there. That's just about where Eve got off too, wasn't it, Honey? Of course‚ my Mother in some ways got off before that, she'd heard enough scandal about Fred & was afraid it was going to happen to me. But I never had any scandals like that! I never divorced my wife & married another woman, my secretary. I never had two wives, I never stopped there!—I've many more!—Ha!
25. SO I DON'T KNOW WHETHER IT'S SIGNIFICANT OR NOT, MAYBE YOU CAN FIGURE OUT SOME SIGNIFICANCE TO IT, BUT IT WAS SURE VIVID! I'll never forget Faithy flying through that gate. She looked like she might have been a year or two older by that time, maybe as big as Davida. (Maria: You call Techi Faithy a lot!) Did I say Faithy again? See, she's sort of today what Faithy was to me when she was little, the one person that stood by Dad when he was having his ins & outs with Eve & the rest of her crowd. Eve & Deb usually stood up against us & Ho was a little bit weak on Eve's side.
26. HO WAS FAITH'S BEST FRIEND, MINE TOO‚ THAT'S WHY WE CALLED HIM JONATHAN, DAVID'S BEST FRIEND. He'd stick with us until they put the pressure on & they'd almost always win Ho over. He sort of went the way that the biggest pressure went, & Faith & I would be left standing alone on our side. Aaron was never on anyone's side. He was just him & on his side & the Lord's side & that was it! Nobody ever told him what to do or where to get off or on or anything else, he just did what the Lord told him to do. If he sided with us we could be thankful‚ if he sided with the other side, well, we were sunk!
27. DEAR LITTLE FAITHY, THOUGH, SHE WAS THE ONE THAT USUALLY STUCK UP FOR HER DAD & stayed on his side & stood by me when just about all else was lost & she was my comforter & companion & little angel, sort of like Techi here! Well, now I've got lots of people on my side, but Techi's been a real little angel that came along to cheer me up. David was the first one‚ but as he got older, I don't know, I just wanted a little girl, so the Lord sent her. She was already up there! I mean, that is the most amazing thing. If you think it's amazing‚ what do you think I think? I went through it!—Her visiting me several times before she was ever born!
28. I HAD NEVER HEARD THE NAME TECHI, AS GOD BEARS ME WITNESS, IN MY WHOLE LIFE! I didn't even know there was such a name. In Latin America it's a common nickname for girls. They have the funniest diminutives & nicknames that you'd never recognise as the nickname. Just like, where could they ever get Bob for Robert in English?—Or Chuck for Charles? But even they resemble the original name a little bit more, at least the first letters are the same. But in Spanish they've got more nicknames that bear no resemblance to the original name at all‚ but they always nickname'm that if they have that name.
29. SO WE DIDN'T FIND OUT TILL A LONG TIME AFTERWARD THAT TECHI IS A COMMON NAME IN LATIN AMERICA. Techi! I notice some people on the Family videos—it shows you how they Americanise things—pronounce it "Tekky," like she was some kind of high-tech machinery, very technical. When she comes in to inspect our room she's very technical! She looked at our room & said, "Oh, how complicated‚ very confusing."—Because of our furniture arrangement & work materials.
30. WELL ANYWAY, I SAW HER & KNEW HER EVEN BEFORE SHE WAS BORN, HOW ABOUT THAT?—In some of those appearances, years before she was born, & in some of them even older than I saw her later. Isn't that amazing? The first time she was about nine, once she was seven. And one of the most vivid times, the time she told me her name, was when she was five! Think of that! And I can see that to this day! She was just a little bit bigger than she is right now—she's four now & she'll be five in March. So she was just a little bit bigger & looked a lot like she does right now!
31. I'LL NEVER FORGET, IT WAS SO VIVID, I KEPT HEARING THIS VOICE FROM THE NEXT ROOM, HER MOTHER READING HER THIS BOOK ABOUT THE STORY OF DAVIDITO. We hadn't even written the book yet, had we? And he was nine years old! How about that? I just thought about that & remembered that. At the end of this month he'll be nine & in the book she was reading he was nine years old! I think that's in the Letters someplace, isn't it? First of all I heard her mother reading & reading‚ just like she reads her stories now, reading to Techi, & I'd hear this little voice pipe up once in awhile, a little girl's voice like she does, asking her mother questions about the book‚ & her mother would answer & just keep on reading.
32. AT FIRST I THOUGHT, "WELL I'VE BEEN ASLEEP HERE & SHE'S GONE INTO THE NEXT ROOM, BUT WHAT CHILD IS SHE READING TO, ANYHOW‚ ABOUT DITO OUT OF SOME BOOK THAT HASN'T EVEN BEEN WRITTEN YET?" I wouldn't be surprised your Mama's going to be reading you that book yet one of these days. Or Techi'll probably read it herself. And I heard this voice, so I opened my eyes expecting to see Maria's place in the bed vacant, but instead she was lying there sound asleep!—Weird! You just have an experience like that & see if you don't think it's weird! (See No.698)
33. I MEAN, IT WAS NO DREAM, I WAS CONSCIOUS! I WASN'T ASLEEP. I opened my eyes & looked over at her & she was sound asleep & the voices would fade away. So I'd shut my eyes again & try to go back to sleep & the voices would come in again, just like somebody turned up the volume, & I'd hear them reading. Then I'd look to see & Maria was still there! I don't know how many times I looked over to check if she was there. Then finally I thought, "Am I crazy or something?" I had been real sick. I thought‚ "Well I'd better just shut my eyes, maybe I'm dreaming. Maybe I can forget about it."
34. THEN I HEARD THE VOICES AGAIN, THE READING, BUT THEN THE READING STOPPED. So I looked over to see if Maria was still there & this time the bed was empty‚ she wasn't there, & in walked Techi just almost exactly like she is today! She had this book held under her arm like this & smiled at me just like she would, just like she does today, & said, "My name is Techi! I'm five years old. I'm Davidito's little sister!" She smiled like it was the answer to my question. I was wondering what in the World was going on & it was like she knew I had a question & she wanted to let Grandpa know what was going on. Then she smiled, turned around & walked back out & I began to hear the reading resume. I shut my eyes thinking about all this, "Oh my goodness, am I going crazy?" And I opened my eyes & there was Maria again right there in the bed. Now that's a weird experience, but here Techi is! PTL?
35. WELL, WHAT SOME OF THESE DREAMS MEAN YOU JUST REALLY WONDER SOMETIMES, BUT I MIGHT SAY THAT THE SEX STOP, THAT'S CERTAINLY WHERE GRANDMOTHER WOULD HAVE GOTTEN OFF & THAT'S WHERE MOTHER EVE GOT OFF TOO, THAT'S FOR SURE! But dear little Techi & Maria, they were still with us & we must have ridden to the end of the line & taken the tour‚ because we're still here! Hallelujah! Amen? You can say that's a ridiculous interpretation, but if you've got a better one I'd be glad to hear it! PTL!
36. (FAMILY: BETHLEHEM WAS KNOWN AS THE CITY OF DAVID.) How about that! It's sort of symbolic of our past history & the progress we have made. My Mother was certainly one of the pioneers in a way‚ she was up there & through the gate even before Techi‚ & I was afraid she was going to wander off. But Techi just dove through that crowd, zoom, like that, just like she would. She's a very polite little girl, but if she was in a hurry to get someplace I can imagine she could get there in a hurry! Well, that's the dream, take it or leave it, for whatever it's worth. It was interesting anyhow.
37. DO YOU HAVE FUNNY DREAMS? "LET HIM THAT HATH A DREAM TELL IT!" (Jer.23:28) Maybe it has some significance & someone can interpret it. Try it!—You may like it! I've sure had a lot we've liked!—Amen?—So yours may be a leading, guide or revelation! Give God a chance! Pray about it, & He may give you some meaning. GBAKY dreaming!—In Jesus' name, amen!