Book Review: “Top 20 Dreams”

TOP 20 DREAMS: What the Most Common Dreams Are Telling You, by John Paul Jackson, is short but packed with information about dream interpretation. You can read the book in half an hour. Despite its brevity, the book is the most comprehensive work I’ve ever read on dreams. I use the book as a reference guide. Whenever I have a dream worth remembering but don’t know the meaning of it, I consult TOP 20 DREAMS.

For example, I dreamed that all of my teeth fell out at once.  The dream made no sense– until I read the first chapter entitled “Teeth.” I often dream about houses and vehicles, and sure enough there’s a chapter on each. Just about every dream you can imagine falls into one of the 20 categories spelled out in the book.

John Paul Jackson uses a Biblical model for interpreting dreams. Although God speaks to us primarily through his Word, He sometimes uses dreams to get our attention–just as did with Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, the Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar, Pilate’s wife, and others.

Not everyone has a gift of interpreting dreams, but with the help of TOP 20 CATEGORIES, anyone can find meaning in his or her nighttime narratives. Dreams can be life changing. Anyone looking for a deeper understanding of dreams and a closer relationship with God can benefit from this book.


Old Hymnbook is a Time Capsule


Recently, I  found an antiquarian Methodist hymnbook, dated 1849, among my parents’ belongings.  It is not a typical hymnbook in that it does not contain a single musical note, only the words to 1144 songs.  Though surprisingly small, the 3 x 5 book is thick with 735 numbered pages.

MethodistHymnsAlthough the title of the book is METHODIST HYMNS, the first page reads, “Hymns for the use of the Methodist Episcopal Church, Revised Edition.”  These are not hymns that you are likely to find in today’s Methodist hymnals (with the exception of the doxology “Praise God, from whom all blessings flow”).  The book belonged to a nineteenth century woman with the surname Hinman.  Her name is engraved on the cover.

The hymnbook is a time capsule.  Hidden within its pages, darkened with time, are a sentimental poem called “Woman’s Smile” and an obituary of a Miss Ida J. Fox, who died on “Sunday, July 13, after a short illness, aged 16.”  The obituary continues, “She was a pupil of  Albemarle Female Institute . . . was taken sick with typhoid fever, which terminated her life.  Her death was a very sad one.  She was a young lady of rare attractions, and made everyone a friend by her amiable and attractive manners.”


I was intrigued by the reference to Albemarle Female Institute, so I looked it up.  The school was founded in the 1850’s, was renamed in 1910, moved to another location in Charlottesville in 1939, and eventually merged with another school.  Today it is known as St. Anne’s-Belfield School.

Below is Hymn 777 from METHODIST HYMNS (1849, Lane & Scott).


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