She was your every day, normal girl. Nothing in particular made her different from her friends, except maybe that she was the pastor couple’s daughter – the first born of four children. Her parents loved her; her family had strong ties. She was beautiful, something she’d inherited from her mom. She was the average teenage girl, around fourteen years old.
Then, of all the other people it could have happened to, it was HER mom that got cancer. Malignant malenoma – the doctors called it the rarest, and by far the worst, kind of skin cancer. Why did it have to be her mom? She wondered, and sometimes cried.
The cancer in her mom progressed, and eventually a huge lump had formed on her neck. Oh, they went in for medication and all that, and she hoped her mom would live. This couldn’t be happening though! Her mom always faithfully came to church, even sat in the front row. But now, her dad had to set up a cot in the back for her to lie on through the service. Her dad didn’t preach anymore, because he wanted to be there for his wife when she needed to be rushed to the bathroom to throw up.
It seemed hopeless already. Her mom had been brought to the hospital. She had been there for a few weeks now – they were giving her high shots of morphine for the pain. If only she could have taken something that would take away the pain in her heart, the fear of losing her most precious mother, whom she’d always loved. God, where are you!?!?! She was numb waith fear and pain, and lots of anger. She managed to look brave in front of her friends though. Little did they know what kind of a war of pain versus fear versus anger was raging inside her, ripping her heart apart.
Then her mom died. Peacefully. Her family was in the room at the time, her dad was holding her mother’s hand as she slowly slipped away. All was silent now – except for the sobbing; except for the wild emotions that wanted to burst out of her. She could only softly weep, and sometimes she let the word “why?” slip out.
Less than a year later, her dad married another woman. The wedding was beautiful, that couldn’t be denied, but inside, pain still throbbed. So much change would have to take place. ‘How can I bear the rest of my life with another woman as my mother for the rest of my life?’
Her time had come to leave this earth and her old, tired body. She woke up in a beautiful place. ‘Is this heaven?’ The first thing she noticed was that eveyrthing was lit up so brightly that she was sure this place could never know the meaning of the words night or darkness. The light was not only physically light, but this light pierced her in such a deep way it seemed to permeate her with some kind of love and joy.
The next thing she noticed was the soft sound falling on her ears. Singing. It was like a heavenly host of angels -she’d never heard anything like it. She looked down and gasped when she saw herself. She was no longer the old, worn down looking body she had grown used to on earth. Her body was fresh and young. She had a white dress on. It seemed to shine with some kind of brilliance she couldn’t define.
But what caught her attention most was the very obvious feeling of the lack of pain and loneliness. All she felt was unspeakable joy. She felt love and peace.
A man in shining clothes walked up to her with a big warm smile on his face. “Welcome to the haven of rest for those who believe. You’ve entered the dwelling place of the Most High God.” The angel said the words with such warmth and radiance. Her heart leaped when she realized this was truly the dwelling place of her God whom she’d served all her life. It was hard to believe! She was probably about to meet her Saviour!
The angel took her hand and led her down a path that was covered with lush green grass. She never had felt such soft moist grass before, it sure felt good on her bare feet. One the left side of the path were towering trees that looked enormous, they must have been around several thousand years. On the right side lay a huge, shimmering blue lake. Swans were floating in it. The lake was so clear, she even caught glimpes of fish jumping out of the water.
So engrossed was she in the beauty of the woods and the lake that she failed to notice the amazing city looming up ahead of them. “That is the New Jerusalem. It’s where God’s throne is. You are about to meet your Creator, dear one.” She stopped in her tracks, in awe of what she had just heard. Meet her Creator!
They entered the throne room. The glory in there was very close to unbearable. She fell to her knees and wept for joy and awe and every beautiful feeling that was overwhelming her. She had just glimpsed with her own eyes, the One she had served for so long, the One who had always been there for her in all her trials. The One she loved, adored, worshiped.
“Come, my Child.” His words were spoken in such a soft, tender voice. Just like a father. Or a mother. He was standing in front of His throne, His arms extended. She stood to her feet, her head was still bowed. Slowly, with hushed steps, she walked forward to meet her Maker.
She stopped only a few feet in front of Him. God touched her trembling chin and lifted her face to look into her eyes. “My Child,” He said tenderly. “My Father,” she whispered. She looked longlingly into his eyes. He was everything she had ever known Him to be and more. His arms were open and she fell into His embrace. “At last I’m Home,” she said with great feeling. There was no need for many words. All that needed to be said was accomplished as she lay in her Father’s loving arms, at last comforted fully and all her pain washed away.
“There’s someone I’d like you to meet, dear Child,” God said with a twinkle in His eye. “Come with me.” He led her outside. Angels were treading the streets of gold, and everything she saw was bathed in beauty and glory. Then she saw her, standing on the golden street.
“Mom! Mom!” She screamed and burst into a run. She threw herself into her long lost mother’s arms. “Oh Mom! I missed you so much!” Her mother was beautiful and so carefree looking. “Oh honey,honey!” Her mother kissed her hair over and over, murmuring how she loved her and had never forgotten her.
“Oh Mom, I missed you!” She breathed a sigh of relief as she realized that all earthly pain had been forever washed away. “I’m at peace now, Mom. I love you!”
“I love you too, my daughter,” her mother said softly, gazing into her daughter’s eyes. “We will be together forever here.”
Joining hands, mother and daughter explored their beautiful new home where nothing was ever to separate them again. All memory of pain and anger was forever erased. There were no more tears of sadness to be cried, no more pain in the heart to be felt. She was home now.
Crystal, This is so beautiful. It reminds me of the song that says: "Heaven came down and glory filled my soul...my sins were washed away and my nights were turned to day...". Thank you for expressing it so beautifully - May it bless the hearts of many (especially your friend) and help those who are blind to 'catch a glimps of glory bright'. I really enjoyed reading your story. Stay in his presence and continue to make yourself available to be used by God. Janice