Brian's Journal - A Dream

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A spider bite (08/15/2020)
I am trudging down a hillside in knee-deep snow approaching the floor of a narrow valley, really just a wide gully. I am not alone; perhaps Sarah is with me. Our destination is somewhere on the steep forested slope on the far side of the valley. Seeking a way to cross the small stream flowing down the valley, we look downstream but encounter a cliff. Returning upstream I bypass a flat area of slippery ice then clamber over several angular boulders to reach the edge of the stream where it flows over gray stone ledges. A rusty iron crucifix maybe 8 inches long with pointed ends hangs off of one of the boulders.
Stepping across the stream I find myself in a small crowd of people being adressed by a young woman dressed like a Park Ranger. She is explaining that we need to have a ticket to continue. I know that I received a ticket and I believe it is in my pocket. I pull a pile of little slips of paper - folded grocery receipts and ticket stubs and such - out of my pocket but the only tickets I find do not have the correct number on them.
Leaving the crowd I walk a short distance up the slope and look up. Immediately over my head is a black egg case which looks like a lump of caviar. As I watch it begins to move and I am afraid that wasps are hatching out of it but instead a spider drops onto my foot. I am sitting down with my knees up and I am not too concerned about the spider even though it climbs up my leg but suddenly it gets on my arm, runs up to my shoulder, leaps onto my face and with big jaws reminiscent of a set of dentures or of teeth in a skull, it bites me right on the bridge of my nose.
It is hard to dismiss the Christian symbolism in this dream - the cross made of iron, unyielding and inflexible yet also obsolete, like those rusty iron railroad spikes once used to anchor track to ties but now found discarded along upgraded rail lines. Crossing to the other side of the stream may symbolize dying, in which case the crowd of people before the ranger may represent the judgment. An Ellen White quote comes to mind, which I misquote here: (Justification) is our title (ticket) to heaven, (sanctification) is our fitness for heaven. I have tickets but not the right one so I don't get to go to heaven. Death eats me instead.

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