Steve Bremner

Author, Podcaster & Writing Coach

Baptism By Fire: My Personal CallingThis post is a 14 min read

heart-1137257_1920This is a dream I had in 1999, and a blog post I put on my blog in Nov of 2004.  This is one of the only times I’ve reposted an old blog entry and not fixed it up not fixed it up very much. I didn’t make any very many changes or corrections, or remove anything that I would like to not have written now that I look back on it.  I post this in order to have hyperlinked in the forthcoming series I’ve been writing on my testimony, which will be posted very shortly.

This reads as though it were the blog post from 2004, and when I’m adding commentary now in retrospect I will alert the reader, but otherwise this is years old.  I did edit it and remove only details and content that were relevant to the events of that night like street witnessing testimonies the original post contained that might seem superfluous now.

The rest of the entry from here on out is the ‘retro’ content:

Prophetic Dream Interpreted

At first we met where Morning Star does their worship and prophetic music and dance and what not, and they usually have a table with a sign that says “Prophetic Dream Interpretation”. Week after week I’ve been contemplating sharing with them a dream I had five years ago that I have a lot of interpretation for already, but there’s still more pieces of the puzzle and at the point of walking into it in real life I will understand what the dream meant on a total scale.

The Night at Selwyn 5 Years Ago

Here is the dream first, preceded by the surrounding events that night that led up to it. About five years ago when I first started going to Selwyn Outreach Centre’s youth group with Matt Baxter during my last year of high school, I went up to the front during an altar call at the end of the night to repent of something. I forget what it was, but as I lay face down on the floor prostrate before God, an older man came and tapped me on the shoulder and told me to get up. There was nothing aggressive about him, but just the straightforwardness of it caught me off guard because he and I didn’t know each other. I stood up and he asked me if I would let him pray for me. So he proceeded to prophesy over me, which was completely new to me at the time. He then tells me I have a pure heart before God, and that God sees the cry of my heart, not the last mistake I made. He then tells me I’ve got leadership in me, and God is going to use me in a mighty way. So he prayed for me, and I don’t remember the details of it, but I do remember succinctly that he prayed for me to dream dreams of God.

That night, my friends Matt, Cassandra, and Mark and I went downtown and was it raining out. At some times it’s not raining, but it pretty much is wet and cold out —after all it was around October and an autumn in Canada is colder than one in NC. I was gripped with something I was never gripped with before: I hurt on the inside at the sin of the people we were running into. I ran into two friends from school who both I’d known for maybe the whole time I’d spent in public school, and I was miserable at the idea of them perishing into a fiery hell without Christ. I had never been gripped before the whole time I’d been saved. I wanted everyone to get saved because of how amazing God was and how awesome being a Christian was, but I never ever was scared and agonized over the fate of those who don’t know their savior. That these people would be guilty of a just verdict rendered from a just Judge at the edge of their eternity was frightening. Oh if the whole Body of Christ ever felt that way for one period of 24 hours the whole world would get evangelized, but that is an entry for another occasion. Needless to say I was probably more speechless then in that moment as we conversed with the three or four different people we ran into that night than I had ever been before.

The Dream – Baptism by Fire

That night after the whole ordeal, I had one of—if not the most potent dreams I’d ever had in my whole life up to that point. There are only a few other times I had prophetic and symbolic dreams since, but nothing like this one.  In it, I was on my way to my home church for a baptism service. The only thing was that it was night time, and was dark and rainy out just like in real life that night when I went downtown with Matt, Cass, and Mark.

And when I got to Auburn Bible Chapel’s parking lot (my home fellowship at that time of my life), there were no cars present, and the lights in the church were off and it was clear nobody was present. I kept walking through the parking lot because as you enter from the street onto the property, the parking lot does a sort of ‘L’ shape, so standing where I was wasn’t a good way to determine if there were any cars parked in the lot.

I went down the sort of hill and towards my right and there was a random gathering of about 10-12 guys present. All were youth or young adults. There was one adult type of person there, unknown to me in real life, but in the dream I had the full understanding he was some kind of minister or pastor. There didn’t appear to be anything going on amongst them, but there was an excitement in the air and a sense of expectation of something, and it was that sense of expectation among them that I could feel which led me to draw closer.

Then, something happened that if it happened in real life in front of my eyes like that it would have shocked me or nauseated me, but to my recollection of the dream, I was pretty calm about it. The minister laid his hand on one of the youth, and called down the baptism from heaven on him, and lightning struck this young man and he caught on fire. Literally on fire, only he wasn’t burning up or dying, but like I imagine the burning bush Moses saw, it just burned! Then the minister laid his hands on a second youth, and the exact same thing happened. He got struck with lightning, and caught fire, but didn’t burn up but just stayed there with his hands lifted up to heaven, magnifying God. It was a powerful sight, and I’m in awe reliving it in my mind to write this, but it didn’t take me by surprise as I watched it in the dream. In fact, it all seemed normal to me. And nobody present was devastated or repulsed by the scene but all were expecting, and even seeking the same thing.

At that point the minister turned to me and said something either to the effect that it was my turn, or he asked me if I’d like to go next, I’m not sure and can’t remember explicitly. I remember reluctantly hesitating, and it wasn’t out of fear of being struck by lightning, because in the dream I knew what was going on and that I needed it. But I had a sense of knowing I was not ready for it. This baptism with the fire was something I knew I needed, and something in me did desire for it, but I was not ready. Then either I woke up or had another dream that I can’t remember. I really believe I woke up after that because I remember the potency of the dream being with me for hours after that.

I didn’t forget anything, except who the people in the dream were specifically. I knew these people mostly from all parts of my life; some from Auburn’s youth group, some from Selwyn’s, and some from my public high school. I shared it with Matt Baxter—the guy who I’d been going to Selwyn with for the last several weeks to that point, because after all he was used to all this charismatic stuff so he’d have a better idea than most what was going on. He showed me or maybe he just reminded me of Scriptures about being baptized with the Holy Spirit and with fire, such as Matthew 3:11:

I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.”

And the tongues of fire that rested on the heads of the 120 in Acts when the Holy Spirit came on them for the first time.

I had read that verse who knows how many times and never thought anything of it until that dream and Matt’s navigation through the symbols and their meaning in the dream. I had never been taught anything about the power of God, or dreams or just plain anything about the gifts of the Spirit, and this new experience in dimensions of God that I never walked in before was exciting to me. That’s nothing against my previous home fellowship at all, because they sincerely believed and taught what they believe, but they just don’t walk in (or believe in) the things of the prophetic or healing or gifts of the Spirit or whatever else I’d been learning and experiencing now that I stepped out and went somewhere new. These new dimensions in God were awesome to me.

So since then I’ve known it pertained completely to my calling, and that the dream was rich with stuff to unpack that I still hadn’t even learned in the last 5 years.

The Interpretation

So back to last night downtown at Morning Star’s ministry at the corner of Trade and Tryon streets. I sat down with these two young men at a table they had set up there week after week, and explained to them pretty much the night leading up to the dream and the details of it, just in way less detail than I wrote here. The guy sitting at the table directly in front of me had a lot of detail that for the life in me I wish I had a tape recorder or a notepad at the time so I could remember it better. He told me that I was called to power evangelism, that my ministry and my desires have been more outside of the so-called ‘church’, as represented by the power from on high that literally fell outside of the church building, not in it. That I was called to be ‘on-fire’ for God, (I know some of you who know me are reading saying ‘duh’ out loud to yourselves); that this baptism was a power, and he made mention of the disciples in Luke 9:54 wanting to call down fire on the people. The guy to the left was saying that there was an authority that the body of Christ is called to walk in that God was intending to use me in, such as the authority and power of walking in that kind of judgment. But I realize like in Luke 9 that there takes a maturity to walking in that authority and it wasn’t judgment like raining fire on people to kill them, but doing the ‘greater things’ Jesus talked about in John 14.

Other symbolism they reinforced for me was how I was seeing this take place outside the Church, which by nature is a very evangelistic concept, as evangelism hardly ever takes place in the Church, but in the highways and byways, and Jesus taught in the synagogues, but he also was friend to the sinners, tax collectors, and prostitutes –who didn’t ‘go to church’ and that is the people group he had the most fruit amongst—not the religious of his day. These two guys were able to identify for me the friction and tension in my heart where traditional “church” is concerned.

The night time as opposed to daytime underscored how there are fewer people around in the night in the natural realm as opposed to daylight when all can see. Like in Acts 5:19 when the angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and let Peter and John out miraculously as opposed to during the day time when all would see it. Or Acts 16:25 where at midnight the prison shook and Paul and Barnabas were released. I’m not entirely sure what all the fact it was night time represented, but when considering and meditating on some of these dreams the Lord gives us it is fascinating to search the Scriptures and see what they say regarding the symbols and word concepts in them.

Relevance

I’m not the only one called to something like this. This stuff I’m sharing, particularly this dream and what it reflects is attainable to the whole Body of Christ, not just elite few. It is as Ephesians 4:11-16 says:

It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in ALL things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”

I’m telling you this is a corporate thing. What is included in “all things”? Having a nice church building and meeting on Sundays and Wednesdays with our community not being changed but slipping further and further into hell as godless secular and humanist agendas take over our land, or prayer is left out of school because the bulk of the Church isn’t praying at home anyway.   Or the idea there is no God but we came from monkeys instead dominates the culture around us?  How could fireman sleep in their truck while the house burns down and the people who live in it die and slip into a deep despairing eternity without God!?

This dream has burned in me for years, even before I knew the details had any prophetic relevance. I remember the months following I would read my Bible and ask God “How come what goes on in the Bible doesn’t happen in real life? And how come the “Church” is comfortable being a totally different thing than what I read in this book? How come the stuff that doesn’t happen–such as the supernatural–doesn’t happen in real life, and the church will explain it away and think that what we got IS the supposed real thing and the rest is unattainable?” And other such questions–I’m telling you friend why sit back and let come what will? Do football teams enter stadiums EXPECTING to lose? Or do they fight till the very last second on the time  clock has passed? Then why are so many in the Body of Christ so unwilling to move when we KNOW the end and the victory we have?!!!! I tell you, whether it’s the whole body of Christ getting this baptism in fire, or just a few random guys like in that dream, I want it and I’m going for it!

About Steve Bremner

Steve the coffee drinker is a Canadian missionary to Peru, who is called to raise up disciples who flow in the power of the Holy Spirit within a missional community named Oikos. If you like Steve's blog, you'll also like his Kindle books. Note: this post may have contained affiliate links of which the author receives a small commission if you purchase something recommended in the post.