by Teri Starbuck
It was August 16, 1994 when I awoke with a jolt after a startling dream. (The question that still remains is that was it a dream, or a vision, or an angelic visitation sent by God?) In the dream I was standing on the deck of my mother's house with my mom, and a friend named Patti. We heard a sound, and turned to see a giant camel walking towards us with the most magnificent creature I had ever seen riding on it. It looked like a man in a white robe; a golden glow emanated from him like the sun. He had huge fluffy wings that flowed up above him and down to the ground behind him. I recognized him at once, and I said, "Oh hello, Gabriel, what are you doing here?" He pointed at my mom and said "I have come to tell you that you have one more day to prepare for going home to Jesus. Get your life in order, and I will be back." And with that he galloped off down the road, and up into the sky, disappearing into the clouds.
I awoke in fear that either my mom or I only had one more DAY to live! I called my pastor Bob Langfield, and told him about the dream. He told me that a day is as a year to the Lord, and to try and not let it upset me. My daily devotional for the day said "into His Hands I commit my spirit". When I told my mom about the dream, she was very silent. She started shaking while I told her. She said that she, too, had a dream last night; however she would not tell me what it was. She hugged me in tears, and told me she loved me. She then spent the next year literally preparing for her death. She drew up a living will and trust, gave possessions away to who she wanted to, and went on trips she had always wanted to go on.
One was a cruise with my Godmother, Marion Branch. During this cruise, they were at dinner one night, and my mom started coughing violently. They thought that she might be choking, so one of the other guests did a heimleck procedure on her, but nothing came out. She sank to the floor, not moving or breathing for a few moments. Then all of a sudden she sat up and asked why everybody was staring at her! She got up, brushed herself off, and went back to her cabin and went to bed. The next morning Marion asked how she was feeling. She said that she felt much better since that nice doctor in the long white coat, and grey hair and beard, came and helped her get up at the dinner table. Mom said that the doctor told her to get up because it was not time for her to go then. Marion just stared at her, speechless. Mom asked what was wrong, that she looked like she had seen a ghost. Marion said that there was NO doctor in that room that night. Nobody came and helped her up. The ship doctor was not on duty that night, only a nurse, and that the doctor was a young man with black hair and never wore a white coat! Mom got mad at her thinking she was losing her mind.
When mom got home she took me out to lunch. I asked, "How was your trip?" She just handed me a picture of herself and my Godmother taken on board the ship, and said "This is the picture I want you to put in my obituary when I die." Then she said, "I died on the ship." I said, "WHAT???" She said, "Yes, I died, but then Jesus came and told me it was not my time yet, but the time is coming soon." I cried and told her I did not want to hear that.
On the morning of August 6, 1995 my mom went into a coma suddenly from brain cancer that had metastasized from a melanoma skin cancer on her arm. It basically had exploded in her head. We rushed her to the hospital, where she stayed in a coma for sixteen days, and endured two brain surgeries. On August 16, 1995, I was with her in her room, and I saw tears fall out of her eyes and drip down her cheeks. I felt a whoosh by my head, as if there were angels flying by. She smiled, and God took her home.
It was not until a week later, that I suddenly remembered my dream. I had written it down in my journal, so I ran and got it out and reread it. I was breathless when I saw the date. It was exactly one year before my mom died! And the daily devotional for the day she died was "into His Hand I commit my spirit", the same as the day of my dream a year before. She died exactly 1 year to the day from my dream when Gabriel told her she had "one day to prepare".
I thank God for creating His angels to comfort and guide us through the transitions in life.
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