A. W. Tozer is a man that many know as the fiery holiness preacher that wrote Knowledge of the Holy but how he came to know the Lord is something most people do not know. It was because of prophetic dreams of an unbelieving grandma.
Young Tozer was living in Ohio at the time and he did not know he believed. Most of the people around him were agnostic so he didn’t have a legacy of faith to look at. He did have a grandma that was odd and eccentric.
It was in a sermon in Chicago that Tozer told the story of the influence of this.
A.W. Tozer and Grandma’s dreams
She was not a Christian or even a believer in Christ. Tozer makes it clear that she did not know the bible but she seemed to have information about spiritual things that he could not understand her knowing. Growing up, this odd relationship made him desire more.
The lady did not own a bible but she had a dream book where she recorded all her dreams and it was of supreme importance. She would not even have her morning coffee until she looked at her book of oracle.
According to David Fant that wrote the biography of Tozer in the 1960’s, the woman would have multiple dreams every night and before even getting out of bed, she was writing them down in this book.
It seems that she was all over the place emotionally being led by her dreams. She would be happy one day based on one and angry the next based on the next one. Everything has importance to her. If a dog barked, she believed that someone would die soon.
It made A.W. Tozer to say later, “If dreams meant anything, long since I would have been in a padded cell.”
Can prophetic dreams speak to us?
No matter what he thought about his grandma, the impact that dreams had on his life early on is without question. The fact is that God does speak to us through prophetic dreams. No every dream is from the Lord but some of them are. He does use them in the bible and he uses them today when they are confirmed by scripture.
God has powerfully used dreams in my life in some of the most key moments. I believe in them if they are properly discerned. While it seems that Tozer’s grandma operated in the occult, it does not mean that God doesn’t use them as well.
For more information, read A.W. Tozer: A twentieth century prophet by David J. Fant if you can find it.