Last night I was in a incredibly visual dream.

I was walking with a pair of friends down a path.  We had to get to the goal, I don’t know what was at the end of the road, but my friends were in a hurry to get there.  I had my friend from a job I had in the past who had to be Mr. commencement speaker, he had to be the best, but was miserable in life. I was also with a female friend who was lost in relationships, family and life.

We walked down the path for hours and finally came to a fork in the path with three exits.

We had to cross a bridge across a abyss that seemed to go to the devil himself.  Once we crossed the bridge we would be presented with a path to chose.

The path that we were on turned into a winding and narrow path that seemed to go on forever away from our goal.  The other two disappeared out of sight one to the left,covered with brush and brambles barely passable and one to the right the other covered with dirt with the sound of rain and thunder yet closer to our goal.

My first friend looked at me and told me “Sean, I’m going winding and narrow, because I can see the goal from here, come with me,” he said to me as he started across the bridge without us.

I looked at him and then asked the other friend which path she was going to take.

“I’m going along with him, because we should stick together.”

As he started across the center bridge it started to collapse behind him, he ran as fast as he could and made it to the other end before the bridge completely fell.

“I’ll meet you at the goal,” he said as we both looked at the two rickety bridges left.  One was to the left with the brambles and brush, the other to the right with the dirt and the rain.

My female friend looked at me and said “You can go first if you want Sean.”

“N0,” I insisted, “Ladies first.”

I held onto the bridge as she started to cross the one to the right and like the first, started to collapse as she hit the middle of the bridge. I scampered back to safety and she got over before it completely fell.

“I’ll throw a rope over,” she said as she looked in her backpack for a long enough rope. But she was unable to find one.

“I’ll meet you at the goal,” I said as she scampered off into the darkness.

I was left with the third bridge, and it swayed  to the left, and to the right. I was sick and threw up twice but I made it across.

As I tried to get through the branches and brambles, I was cut many times, the blood seemed to be everywhere as I fought my way through the brush.

Each time I thought I was to a clearing I was wrong and was hit with branches blacking out once or twice.

At the end of my journey through, which I could not tell how long it took to travel for the underbrush covered the sun, I met up with my friends at the goal.  I had arrived first, my female friend was covered from head to toe with mud and a glowing smile on her face.  My friend with the type A personality arrived last and yet was the first one to speak.

He took the long and winding path , “Sean my friend, I wished you had come with me on that path. I’ve always looked at getting things as fast as I could and always being  first. But here I am with you at the goal and it took me a day longer to get here.  Every time I tried to jump the path or take a shortcut, the rocks were to steep and I was pushed back by rockfall further away from the goal. I took my time and allowed the path to guide me and I’m here. I have the patience to do whatever I need now. ”

My female friend spoke up next, “Sean my friend, I wished you had come with me on my path.  Though I was wearing my nice dress when I started it started to rain and the dirt turned to mud. There was several times where I was stuck unable to move, but as it rained I saw a rainbow in the distance. I grabbed an overhanging branch, pulled myself from the muck and started toward the rainbow.  Though I’m dirtier, and have lost my jewelry on the way, I know who I am down deep.  I know that down deep that I don’t need material things, just friends and hope to get where I need to get to next.”

Both of them looked at me and was expecting my story. But I was interrupted by the voice of the Big Guy.

“Each of you took the path that you needed. Each of you learned a lesson.  Right Sean?”

I looked toward the clouds, and sat stunned.

I was scabbed over, bloody from the struggle and I didn’t get it. I had to speak up.

“But sir, I don’t understand…”

And I found my way at the bridge again with his voice in my head.

“You didn’t take the bridge to the right because you were already stuck. You didn’t take the bridge to the center because you wouldn’t have learned anything further with patience. You took the path I needed you to take.”

I looked toward the sky and yelled, “A path of pain, darkness, isolation and suffering.”

And I started to walk backwards, and found no matter which direction I turned, the bridge was there in front of me.

“You don’t have to understand the lesson Sean, just know it’s in my plan for you and I love you.”

Then I woke up.

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