Prophetic Dreams: How to Discover the Meaning of Your Dream

Prophetic Dreams take you on a journey with God on gold backgroundHave you had a prophetic dream recently, and wondered what it meant? Perhaps you had a significant dream in the past—and you remember it years later.

I believe the Holy Spirit is moving right now in the realm of prophetic dreams.

  • God is not only awakening past dreams, but He is also speaking in new dreams!
  • He is redeeming dreams that we thought were lost

If this stirs you, I pray that you will encounter God in your dream life.

11 Tips to Discover the Meaning of Your Prophetic Dream

Sometimes, the Holy Spirit imparts a timely message through a dream. Here are some tips for navigating and understanding prophetic dreams, using my recent dream as an example:

Dream: A Visitor and the Footprints of Angels

We had a tumultuous time earlier this month, where we experienced great joy, followed by sadness, and then some news that left our future uncertain.
In the middle of this upheaval, on 13th September, I had a dream:

A woman called Sophie was visiting our home and ministry center. [1] She was excitedly telling me about how it was possible to see the evidence of angels—and to tell where they had been walking.

Sophie had made a study of this and had written a book on it! And she wanted to share what she had learned.

She pointed to the ground, and I saw golden-colored sand, as you would see on a beach, in which there were many indistinguishable footprints. I looked at it with a great deal of curiosity and wondered, how could you tell which of the footprints were angelic?

When Sophie left, I noticed the room was set up for students in a small training workshop layout.
And she had left study notes about the topic under each chair. The cover of these was the same as her book—and appeared in shades of orange and yellow, although I did not see the title.
It was ready to receive students.

1. Note the Context and Content of Your Prophetic Dream

I’ve noticed that God gives dreams in troubled times about the future, to give us hope. Even when the meaning is a mystery, it signifies an encounter with Him.

We are reminded that God cares for us and watches over our lives. But a dream is not always about the future. A dream can also be timely, as God gives us present instruction or encouragement.

I recommend that when you journal about a dream, date it, and take note of the circumstances happening in your life at the time of the dream.
One day, that will be a part of your testimony.

2. Remember A Prophetic Dream has its Own Language

When God speaks to us through dreams and visions, He often communicates in parables and symbols. For example, I noticed yellow and orange, which spoke to me of joy, glory, and the fire of God’s presence.

Some dream symbols are easily identifiable, some are personal to us, while others we can research in the Bible.

We may not always understand the symbols or meaning of our dreams, but its mystery causes us to seek God, to find out what the Bible says about it, and to enquire with others. [2]

3. Write or Record the Prophetic Dream While You Remember the Details

It is helpful to record the dream as soon as possible. This may be a few notes to jog your memory!
There may be finer details that will fade if you leave them that carry significant meaning.

Take note of the atmosphere in the dream—how did it feel? In my dream, I felt curiosity, wonder, and anticipation.

I woke up—just after 1:30 am and jotted down some notes, recognizing the dream was spiritual. “Sophie.”
I remembered that the name means wisdom and comes from the Greek word “sophia”. [3]

4. Pay Attention to What Happens After the Prophetic Dream

Later that morning, I forgot the dream as we attended a family funeral.
It was a sad occasion, yet rich with love, honor, family, and faith.

As the service closed in prayer, I glanced downwards.
The carpet on the church aisle was the color of gold sand. Suddenly, I was jolted back, present in the dream. Tears came to my eyes as I realized, “Angels are here!”
Afterward, we went outside to mingle with family, friends, and strangers.
The last person I met was a woman called Sophie.

Sometimes, the Holy Spirit follows a dream with signs, and through these, He says, “Pay attention, this is Me!”

5. It Can be Helpful to Share Your Prophetic Dream with Someone

As we drove home, I related the dream and coincidences to Malcolm. “What does it mean?” he wondered, amazed.

I mused over this and realized, “Sometimes, God gives you an unanswered question, to stir your hunger. And to send you on a journey to seek Him for that answer.”

Sharing your dream with someone supportive of you is helpful for several reasons:
1. Sharing helps you remember it.
2. If they are acquainted with dream interpretation, they may be able to help with the symbols.
3. If they know you, they can help reflect on the meaning personally. They may notice something you overlooked.
4. In the process of recounting the dream, a theme or purpose of the dream may occur to you, as it did to me.

6. A Prophetic Dream is an Invitation to a Conversation with God.

When I came home from the funeral, I removed my jewelry and gasped as I realized the significance of what I was wearing.
It was a bracelet which I had put on without thinking as I rushed to leave the house. And it was engraved with the last line of the poem “Footprints in the Sand”.

In tiny, almost obscured letters, it read, “He whispered, “My precious child, I love you and will never leave you…When you saw only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.” [4]

Sometimes, God adds a “P.S.” to a dream!

  • The most important key to discovering the meaning of a dream is to see it as part of an ongoing conversation with God

Perhaps, your prophetic dream is part of an ongoing dialogue, or it may be the beginning of a whole new conversation! God will continue to speak through other ways as you are attentive to Him.

You can process this dialogue through prayer, journaling, and other means.

7. There May be a Literal Aspect to the Prophetic Dream

Gold colored sand with many footprints in itThe day after my dream, we packed and went for a short stay on Phillip Island. Malcolm and I had been through a lot in a short time and needed some space to replenish.

But still, the message of the dream followed us. As we walked by the seaside that afternoon, I realized the sand at that beach was identical to that in my dream—gold, with many indistinguishable footprints! [Photo ours]

A dream may be purely symbolic, but it can also be about something literal that is about to happen (I experienced this when I had a dream that preceded a car crash).

But a dream can have both literal and symbolic elements—which this one did.

8. Don’t Rush to Interpret the Prophetic Dream

It seemed we were experiencing the relentless pursuit of the Holy Spirit. Perhaps, I had even seen this location ahead of time with the gold sand in the dream. But I still didn’t know what it meant.

A prophetic dream can be a window into the future. One day we will understand the meaning. But in the meantime, it is a mystery.

And that is okay—this is why it is powerful to keep a record of your dreams.

Some of my dreams have taken years to unfold, and then one day I realize, “I dreamed about this!” So, I have searched out the journal in which I recorded it.

9. The Holy Spirit Reveals the Meaning

Two days later, I walked by the golden sand, praying, and reflecting.
I felt the Holy Spirit challenging me and presenting me with a choice. Would I look at events of the past year as a setback—or see them as a setup?
Would I see the trial through the lens of covenant and promise? [5]

In those moments of wrestling with His call to obedience—to believe in His goodness in the face of difficulty—I saw the dream’s meaning.

While others can help us understand the symbols in a dream, the Holy Spirit, who is the author, is the one who reveals the meaning.
When this happens, we have an “aha!” moment.

10. A Prophetic Dream Leads to a Revelation About God

The question my dream raised was:

  • How can you identify where angels have walked?
  • How can you tell where God has been at work?

Suddenly, I realized the answer was in having a Kingdom perspective. When you look through the lens of faith, you can see the footprints of God.

I also realized that the message of the bracelet and the dream are the same.
God invites us to put on Heaven’s glasses and see from His viewpoint.
When we do, we can see His footprints.

11. Be Expectant for God to Reveal More

While I feel the dream has some resolution, I look forward to receiving further insight from the Holy Spirit.

  • Because a dream is part of an ongoing conversation with God and can have layers of meaning.

I am reminded that in the book of Proverbs, Solomon personifies wisdom as a woman who calls, exhorts, and rebukes. Wisdom also offers discipline.

But the New Testament reveals that Jesus Himself is the ultimate wisdom (1 Cor 1:30, Col 2:3) and the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of wisdom (Eph 1:17)

Right now, God is calling us into wisdom’s classroom because He has a lesson to teach us.
The Holy Spirit is training our eyes to see Him and perceive where He is at work.

Leave a Comment
Which of the tips (or stages) of processing a prophetic dream do you most relate to, right now? What stands out to me is the insight that a dream is part of an ongoing conversation. I’d love to hear from you, so leave a comment or prayer request in the box below.


[1] Our actual home and ministry consist solely of a home office and an additional office I use as a studio—the dream was a representation.
[2] Refer to the post Why Does The Holy Spirit Speak in Mysteries
[3] Strong’s G4678 sophia – wisdom
[4] “Footprints in the Sand” – author unknown
[5] I may explain in an upcoming post about “Wisdom’s Classroom”

Related Posts:

Prophetic Journaling: Create Your Treasury of Insights from God

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It includes a summary PDF in which I explain my process of interpreting colors and numbers.

Here, you will find my best tips, with downloadable templates to help you begin.
Throughout this course, you will:

  • Identify the ways journaling will help you develop your prophetic gift
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  • Download and print templates to help you get started
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  • Access advanced content to help you develop your prophetic gift further
  • Hear my best tips to help you share your work with others

© 2023 Helen Calder, Enliven Blog

Enliven Ministries: Prophetic ministry for a revival generation

35 thoughts on “Prophetic Dreams: How to Discover the Meaning of Your Dream”

  1. Dear Helen and Malcolm,
    Thank you for this word. From your description at the start, which I realise you are not over emphasising, I note some significant situations impacting you. The fact that you have continued to share in the midst of this is an honour for us receiving your message. Thank you so much. Appreciate your love for us and commitment to the work of the Holy Spirit.
    Recently I was encouraging some brothers to fast. That night I had a dream. In the dream, I had some old fashioned boxes of fast-food placed before me. I had to make them up which felt very strange. When I then wrote the dream out, I realised that I had been discussing fasting, and saw the connection between fast-food and fasting-food. The fact the boxes were old fashioned and unmade spoke to me about being called into the ancient paths.
    So appreciate you sharing and your ministry.
    Much love to you guys.

    1. Thank you Sashi,
      And wow—dream symbols are so creative and fascinating! I’m sure there’s more for you to discover from that dream too—just as for me. Boxes waiting to be made up—seems an invitation to participate in what God is doing, in offering His Word to people

      1. Thank you that marries with some further material the Lord has been revealing this morning. I take it!
        Have a lovely weekend!

  2. I really enjoyed the part that the dream reveals God’s character, I also liked the fact that God will reveal more to you later on about the dream and rushing to interpret it. I learned I had the gift to interpret dreams but I have to ask the Holy Spirit to reveal what it means so I can understand it in depth.

  3. Thank you so much.
    Your messages have always been timely. They always come at a time when things happening in my life needs some clarification.
    May God continue to bless you and may His peace be with you always.

  4. Oh I get so many prophetic dreams these days, as I get older!
    Before going to sleep I submit my mind to Jesus (as he says we have his mind) and ask him to speak through a dream if he has anything to tell me, or to bring to church or individuals there. And he does!
    I also ask that if a dream IS from him, please keep it in my mind, clearly, when I wake up – if a dream isn’t from him, please erase it so I can’t remember it when waking. And he does!
    Then of course I write it and ask him to confirm and/or interpret it.
    And he does!
    So thanks to you for this.

    1. Amazing! You have such a fruitful dream life Jenny
      Yes I find His dreams are clear and are marked with His presence in some way (whether in the dream or reflecting on it)

  5. Dear Helen

    I have had more or less the same dream two nights in a row now. I knew God was trying to tell me something, you just confirmed this to me. You have no idea how God used you in my life, over the past few years. As Deon said, ‘Your messages have always been timely.’
    God bless you and Malcolm, Shalom

  6. This is so encouraging as I am also going through some things that have been trying to bring uncertainty as well. I don’t have dreams that often but recently had a dream of me on some makeshift potato sack like table that I was laying on that had big dip in middle and the dad of my daughters childhood friend Maddie , Mr. Deangelis was on my right side putting a long needle between my right ribs to get ready to deliver a baby out of me and Maddie was on my left side like a nurse. The whole thing was quick and painless and he left to continue delivering others babies in this like barn. I never say a baby and there was no talking going on. I journaled this and didn’t know how to interpret it. Later on I had an aha moment where it dawned of me that I was in labor and giving birth and Mr. Deangelis first name is JOHN which is a promise I received 4 years ago in regards to something that was dead from God in John 11 that “It will live again for His glory” and that possible this dream means I am birthing the promise? This article helps because of you going over timing. After dream when not seeing this manifest in physical it can be discouraging. Perhaps it means one day I will birth the promise?

    1. There’s a lot of unpacking in the dream Stacy! Yes pregnancy and giving birth in Dreams has to do with new things, birthing the promises and so on. It’s amazing how that goes. In 2010 I dreamed that I was heavily pregnant with a “revival baby” and crowds were gathering outside in the streets. That set off a chain reaction of events!
      So keep the conversation of your dream before God 🙂

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