Heaven’s Tour Bus

 

I dreamed that I boarded a tour bus, and I sat right up front so I could see everything up close.

First stop was at an enormous shopping mall. There were halls upon halls filled with little specialty stores. Each boutique was unique from the other, and displayed items from a place and time in history. Every place in the world had their own ‘wing’ of shopping stores, and each store represented a different time in its history. Every place and time was covered, from cave man to the future. Anything you desired could be had. All you had to do was ask the store clerk, and they then gave it to you.

The mall was crowded with many different people going in and out of the stores with their packages and purchases, each one smiling and enjoying themselves as they went about their business. But no one seen us or looked at us. It was as if we were invisible to them. They seen the tour guide angels, but they must have sensed that they were not alone, and so they stayed out of their way.

As I watched it all, my mind could hardly grasp all the choices before me. I knew it would take a lifetime to explore all the little stores. And oh, wouldn’t it be wonderful to explore them someday with my mother?

Just then, I seen someone walk by me, holding an old book open to their reading page, with a beautiful Celtic bookmark, hand-painted and stamped with gold leaf.

“Oh!” I exclaimed to my tour guide, “I’d like to have one of those!” And just then, someone else walked by from the other direction with a beautiful hair clip holding back her hair. It would be perfect for my friend. “And one of those,” I said. I turned to my guide. “Where is the store that has those?”

The guide told me it was in a different wing of the mall, and that we did not have time to go there on this tour. “Come,” the guide said to me, “we must go.”

“Wait!” I exclaimed, “couldn’t I just go into this store to get the bookmark? It’s right here in front of us.”

But the angel guide nearest to me shook its head no. “It will be delivered to you,” he said, and then we turned and got back into the tour bus.

After driving some distance, we suddenly came upon a valley as big as the Grand Canyon, with a cliff just as steep. The bus lurched out and downwards, and I screamed as I watched the earth come up to me. We tumbled, and then stopped for a moment, to see if everyone was still O.K.

Shaken but unharmed, we continued on into the depths of this valley, till we reached a small settlement of people, camped out by a big red rock. It was dry here, but pleasantly so, with the sun bright overhead, but without the searing heat. There was a light breeze blowing about, which made it a very pleasant day. Perfect picnic weather, I thought.

As I came closer, I could see the people walking about and going on about their business. They had trailer homes, propped up around each other, so they could all be together. Then, as I came close to one of them, one with a white sunshade propped up and out and a picnic table beneath it, my eyes caught a familiar sight and I stumbled.

“Is that my Father?” I whispered to the guide. I doubted it was, even though it looked exactly like him when he was in his twenties, for this man was laughing and smiling, something I had rarely seen my father do. He was talking and listening to the others around him tells him their stories, and him sharing his with them.

“Yes,” the angel answered me, “it is your father. But you must not stare at him, for that would cause him to notice you, and he is not to know right now that you are here.”

Oh! To turn my eyes away from his peaceful smiling face took everything I had in me. But I obeyed the angel, and looked away.

Our bus continued on again, and made it’s way to another grand canyon. When we came to the sharp drop again, I knew then what was in store for us, and I started to pray over and over again, “Oh my God oh my God oh my God!” till suddenly we were riding on the bottom of the canyon again. The angel must have seen the confusion on my face, for it explained to me, “this canyon is easier to access.”

This time, we rode on, till we came to a larger community, all green covered land, and mild temperatures, with little high-rises all around. Each rise, had everything that was needed in its building. The high rise was filled with people; many of them single women, all in the prime of their lives.

Then the tour guide talks to the building manager, and then the manager gives a nod, and leads us to a small room in one of the high rises. I enter and quietly look around.
The place reminded me of a laundry room, with washing machines lined up on one side of the room, while the other side had tables for one to sit upon and sort their laundry. I frowned in confusion, still not understanding. Why bring me here? I knew there must be something special about this room; I just wasn’t catching it.

Then I looked upwards to the wall and seen it.

My Mother’s cross-stitch. My mother’s ceramics. Her art work, up on the walls of the laundry room. I thought, “oh! How sweet of them to let my mother hang her work here!”
I looked closer, and seen there were several different small banners in cross-stitch, that had a date, name, and an emblem on it. Other ceramics that hung on the wall (bird, flower, bunny, dove, etc.,) was inscribed with a person’s name & date. There were several ones there with her name on it, among the other names on the wall. The manager told me the other names were Mom’s friends.

When I understood that, I looked around at the machines and wondered why heaven would even need washing machines. Then the angel stepped in and told me that these washing machines were different than the ones I knew of. These didn’t just clean dirt from clothes; they removed emotional stuff from things and cleaned it of all resentment, anger, bitterness, etc., anything that was un-Christ-like. An item could be put in the washer, and as a blinding white light would swirl in and around it, the person ‘washing their dirty laundry’, would sit at one of the tables and tell God all about their resentment, anger, bitterness, etc., and then leave those emotions with Him. The item associated with the ‘stuff’, then comes out clean and free of all ‘dirt’ and made new again.

My mother’s work, hanging on the walls, commemorated these events. Each piece of work had the person’s first name on it, along with the date. The last item on the banner or artwork was a symbol of what took the place of the ‘stuff’. The ceramics was the symbol itself, and had the person’s name etched into it, along with the date on the back of it.

How ironic! I had thought that God would somehow forcefully remove it (anger, resentment, etc.,) from a person, before letting them go through the gates of heaven. After all, I figured, why would God ever let such dirt into heaven? If He did, then it wouldn’t be heaven then anymore, would it?

But I was wrong. God does let it into heaven. He doesn’t forcefully remove it from the person. Instead, He waits for the person to get tired of the ‘dirt’ first, and then helps them to remove it. The tour guide told me that emotional ‘Dirt’ up in heaven, really stands out. It hinders the person’s joy in heaven, so one is naturally drawn to having it washed. When the spirit of God washes and purifies it, it enables them to let go of the negative emotions, which feels good and gives them more joy. All this takes place as commonly as we do our laundry down here on earth. (And mind you, unlike here, a person’s ‘stuff’ is seen as being quite separate from the people themselves!)

I was sitting on the bench and starring at my Mother’s work that hung upon the walls, when I seen my Mother walk in.

She was young and beautiful again, just like her pictures of when she was a young woman.

I quick looked at the angel again, to see if I could acknowledge her, and the angel nodded a yes.

Mom sat down beside me, and we turned to each other and held each other in our arms.
I was crying, and finding it hard to speak.

“Oh Mom,” I said, in a release of breath, “I’m so glad they’re letting me be with you!”
I wanted to tell her, all about my fears and second-guesses, of asking God to take her home to heaven, instead of having her hang on in pain down here. But in a sudden flash of realization, I sensed it wasn’t necessary, and that Mom fully understood and was glad that I had answered the way I had.

But then I found myself admitting something to her that I had not even voiced to myself down on earth. Something far deeper and uglier.

“Oh Mom,” I cried, still in her arms, “you want to know what’s really awful? If I had known just how hard and painful it would be for me without you, I would have never asked God to bring you to heaven!”

And at this, I cried more, and felt all my shame at this ugly truth revealed. I had expected her to turn away with disgust, once she realized how very self-centered and selfish I really was inside. (To think of keeping her here with me simply for my own comfort, even though it would cause her such pain!)

But she didn’t. She simply held me as I cried, and whispered words of comfort to me. “Sh, there, there, it’s O.K., I understand. It’s O.K.”

I stayed there, in her embrace; till I could feel some of her calm and peace blanket my own soul. I breathed a sigh of relief, as the last sobs racking my body faded away.
Then I looked up, to see her leaving, just like how a mother tiptoes out of her child’s room after finally getting them back to sleep. Only she wasn’t tiptoeing, she was walking, and I wasn’t quite asleep yet.

I was about to ask the angel why she could not stay longer, when the angel told me that she needed to get back to her crafts, for it was time for one of her ceramic pieces to come out of the kiln.

I got up then, and turned to the angel, thinking we would get back on the tour bus, for I was now eager to see more. But the angel let me know that the tour had ended, and with a gentle lift of her hand, I was sent back to earth and then I woke up.

 

*

Rev. 21:4-5, KJV “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new…”

A Pile Of Golden Coins

A dream…

I was lying in my bed, sleeping,
When a demon came in the house to attack me.

It came in the form of a burglar,
Intent to steal our family’s meager belongings
And probably even kill me.

To the demon man,
This was just another raid that he was doing,
And he did not have a care for anyone else.

I lay in fear of him discovering me,
But then realized he was already right there in the room next to me, attacking me with fear.

I asked him why he was going about doing this to people, and he started to tell me of the one that he served.

He pointed to a brown paper bag that appeared in the room, and told me to go look inside of it.

So I got up and went to look. The bag was the kind most often used for groceries. (It was a good sized bag.) I seen that it was filled with shiny gold coins. The coins reminded me of the coins that countries of the world mint, with their politicians faces upon them on one side, and their symbolism on the other, and a dollar amount written around the edge or the bottom of the coin. I noticed however, that the bag was only three fourths full. There was plenty more room for more to be added into the bag.

The demon-man then told me, that for every evil service he did for his god, he received from his god, a gold coin that he could spend here on earth.

I could easily see just how much evil this man had already wrought, just by the large number of coins that resided in the bag.

It saddened me, to see so much evil rewarded.

But then I thought of MY God.

“Oh!” I said, jumping over to where there was a large open space, “that’s nothing! My God gives me a pile of golden coins that is THIS high, (I motioned to just below my waist,) and THIS wide, (I motioned to a space about seven feet around,) just because I am HIS!”

The man looked around and asked me, “where is it?”

“It is being stored for me in heaven, so I don’t have to worry about it being stolen by any burglar here on earth.”

Just as I finished speaking, a portal opened up into heaven, and we both could easily see the pile of coins that I was describing. These coins looked different than the man’s coins. These golden coins were so shiny, that they glowed with a bluish white, heavenly light. And these coins held the face of my God upon them, which is what made the coins glow with such power, as if one was looking directly into the sun itself. I could not make out the face of my God upon the coin, (because they were that bright,) but I knew that my God’s face was upon them none the less. I reached in through the portal, and took one coin from the pile, and held it out for him to see it.

I had the attention of the demon-man then. He frowned with uncertainty as he listened to me speak.

“You see,” I explained to him, “If I wanted to, I can take a coin, or ‘talent’, as I call them, and spend it by asking my God to heal someone. Or, I could take one to ask for a prayer to be answered. I can even remove demons in my God’s Name with just one of these coins.”

“Yeah,” he replied, still full of skepticism, “but can you use those coins in the REAL world?”

I smiled. “I can use them to ask for whatever I have need of, and it will be given unto me.”

The man thought about it for a moment but then scoffed.
“Ah, so what! I can buy all that with my coins as well!”

Then with rich satisfaction in my voice, for I knew what I was about to say would be better than whatever he could come up with, I said, “But, every time I spend one of my golden talents, my God gives me back that talent coin and then GREATLY MULTIPLIES back to me what I had just spent! That means when I spend just one coin, I automatically get four or more to replace it!”

I could see that the thought of this blew the man right out of his smugness and his disdain.

I looked at the demon man then, and asked him innocently, “Does YOUR god do that for you?”

All I heard form the man then, was a soft whisper. “No…”

The portal to heaven slowly closed, leaving me standing there before the demon/man.

He then seemed to remember why he was standing there, and started towards me with an evil look in his eyes.

I knew he was going to try and hurt me somehow.

The demon-man expected me to cry out in fear, but I simply held out the coin that was still in my hands, and said “I cast you out robber demon man in the Name of Jesus. Now get out of my house!”

And with that spoken, the talent held in my hand dissolved into nothingness, as did the demon-man before me.

I then looked upwards to the ceiling, and seen another portal unto heaven open up. I seen my pile of golden coins still sitting there on the floor. And then I seen a hand reach down towards the pile, and add six more golden coins on top of my heap of treasure.

God smiled, I smiled, and then I woke up.

*

Later on that day, I found my beloved husband getting more and more upset, at a puzzle piece that he needed to solve for work, but could not. When he told me how he had worked at the problem for several hours but couldn’t figure it out, and that he’d probably be up all night working on it, I told him that I would go pray.

So I stopped what I was doing, and went to kneel before my Lord and asked Him to help my husband find the solution he was looking for. I prayed for a good ten to fifteen minutes, and then sensed it was o.k. to stop; that God had heard my prayers. Five minutes later, my husband comes back out of his office, and says to me, “Thank you for praying. I finally solved the problem.” I could see that a great burden had been lifted off his shoulders.

I jumped up with delight and hugged him. “Thank you Jesus,” I said, “for answering my prayers!”

As my husband went to get ready to go to sleep for the night, I knelt down before my Lord and thanked Him again for answering my prayer.

“Ah ma petite,” the Lord tells me, “you used one of your coins tonight, didn’t you?”

I smiled, and said “Yes.”

And then I heard the clink of several more coins being added to my treasure up in heaven.

“That delight, that you showed when you thanked Me for the answered prayer, is what causes such great increase in your treasure in heaven.”

Then the Lord told me, “Tell them ma petite. Share this with My people. They need to know that they too, have such a treasure in heaven with their name on it, just waiting for them to use it. And the more they use it, the more their treasure will grow. Tell them. Especially when hard times come, they must remember it and use it. I have already provided for them. But they must take what I have given them, and use it in My name.”

*

Matthew 25:14-30
1599 Geneva Bible (GNV)
14 [a]For the kingdom of heaven is as a man that going into a strange country, called his servants, and delivered to them his goods.
15 And unto one he gave five talents, and to another two, and to another one, to every man after his own [b]ability, and straightway went from home.
16 Then he that had received the five talents, went and occupied with them, and gained other five talents.
17 Likewise also he that received two, he also gained other two.
18 But he that received that one, went and dug it in the earth, and hid his master’s money.
19 But after a long season, the master of those servants came, and reckoned with them.
20 Then came he that had received five talents, and brought other five talents, saying, Master, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained with them other five talents.
21 Then his master said unto him, It is well done good servant and faithful, Thou hast been faithful in little, I will make thee ruler over much: [c]enter into thy master’s joy.
22 Also he that had received two talents, came, and said, Master, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents more.
23 His master said unto him, It is well done good servant, and faithful, Thou hast been faithful in little, I will make thee ruler over much: enter into thy master’s joy.
24 Then he that had received the one talent, came, and said, Master, I knew that thou wast an hard man, which reapest where thou sowedst not, and gatherest where thou strawedst not:
25 I was therefore afraid, and went, and hid thy talent in the earth: behold, thou hast thine own.
26 And his master answered, and said unto him, Thou evil servant, and slothful, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I strawed not.
27 Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the [d]exchangers, and then at my coming should I have received mine own with vantage.
28 Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents.
29 For unto every man that hath, it shall be given, and he shall have abundance, and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away.
30 Cast therefore that unprofitable servant into utter darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

* * * *

Thankful For The Food I Had Been Given

A dream…

I was going to meet a friend of mine
So we could spend some time talking to each other
And get caught up on what was going on in each others families. (To hear the latest news)

She asked me to meet her
At the local food bank
For that was the only time she had open.
(She had young children.)

When I pulled into the parking lot,
I could see it was very busy. There was just one or two spots left for a car to park.

I found one not too far away from my friend’s,
And caught up to her as she was walking up to the building.

There were many people waiting in line
To receive their free food,
And we were towards the end of the line.

We talked and chatted,
Until we were close to the food.

Then my friend was next.
She reached down and grabbed her box of food,
And as I was about to follow her,
A man stopped me and insisted that I take a box of food.

So I took one, feeling like a fraud,
For I still had enough food to last us for another week,
Or maybe two if we didn’t eat too much.
After that, I’d be out of food just like everyone else.
But I still had hope that my husband would find a job
So we could get some money to buy some food.
He’d only been out of work for about a year and a half.
We had been living off the food we had stored up,
When we had the money to put into it.
But I kept thinking that there must be others there,
That needed the food far more than I did.

As we both walked back to our cars,
I could see the police man watching us,
Watching everyone,
And I felt a moment of fear,
That I would somehow be caught,
And prosecuted
For taking food while I still had some.

But no one was checking for identification,
Nor asking for proof of need,
So we continued on
Till we reached our cars.

I found myself wondering if I looked that poor,
That I would need such items.
But I then realized with a sinking heart, that I was indeed, thin and gaunt. I had thought that to be so thin was in fashion, but I sensed then, that I had become too thin.

I felt shame at this, for I could well remember the days when I myself had donated food to the food pantry,
Or given them money to buy whatever food they had needed to help feed the poor.

But I never thought it would be our family
That would need the help.

When my friend and I came to her car,
I offered her the box of food that had been given to me.
But she insisted that I keep it for myself.

She drove off, waving to me,
While I still stood there holding my box of free food.

I looked down at the box,
And realized that there was enough to keep a family of four going for only about three days or so.

Most of it, (all of it?) was dry goods.
Rice, beans, boxed side dishes that needed water added to cook it, pancake mixes and other such items. There was even an opened bag of white flour, rolled closed and taped shut. There looked to be about three cups of the flour inside it.
The box was an open pallet type box, that might have once been used for fruit or vegetables,
But there was no fruit or vegetables in it now.
Fresh produce of any kind, was hard to find.
I realized, that they had put all the items in the boxes,
So that everyone could see that everyone was getting the same thing as everyone else. (They feared food riots otherwise.)

I then wondered, if my friend knew that I’d probably have to be there next week, to ask for the free food right along with her, and figured that I could probably use a head start.

I thanked her in my mind, (and resolved myself to thank her next week when I seen her here again,) for giving me the nudge I needed.

As I was putting the food into the back of the car,
I seen that they were putting out some fresh baked goods,
As an added bonus for the people.

Many of the people had already left,
But there were still enough people left,
To receive the handout.

So I walked up to where they were giving out the bread,
But by the time I got there,
All the loaves were gone. A man there offered me to have three cinnamon rolls (dry and stale ones,) in liew of the loaf of bread. I gladly accepted it with thanks.
He gave me a brisk hug, and then told me to come again, and get the free food, and to not suffer so because of my pride.
(He reminded me of a dear elderly gentleman that I had once known in my church, who was always caring for and helping out others.) He then motioned to me to get in line for the cinnamon rolls with icing on them, that they would be handing out next.

So I did.

They gave me a huge piece of green plastic,
(not quite as thick as a tarp,)
But I was confused and went back and then told them that I had wanted the roll instead. (I realized that the plastic was given out to those who didn’t even have a roof over their heads or a tent to shelter in. We were not that bad yet! We had a nice tent waiting for us at home if we needed it.)

But by this time, the workers were in a battle between themselves, concerning some trivial matter of who said what to whom, and left the food to go argue it out inside.

The people were left there, waiting for the food.

I got tired of waiting for them,
Even though I was next in line,
(I had already waited for over a half an hour,)
So I lunged forward towards one of the tables that had a roll with icing on it, (not the ones with lots of icing on it that I had hoped for, but one with some on it all the same,) and was able to pick up the one on the corner of the tray.

Gasps of the people closest to me could be heard,
(and one saying “Hey! That’s not fair!”,)
But I walked back to my car, licking my fingers from the icing, and quickly, thankfully, devoured the entire roll.
(I think some of the others behind me in line, also tried to grab a roll for themselves, while the workers bickered away the time inside the building.) The workers finally came back out and finished helping the people, till all the rolls were gone.

I drove home, my stomach no longer growling at me, thankful for the food that I had been given.

I then woke up form the dream.

When I went back to bed,
I dreamed that I had somehow been given,
(inherited?) a bunch of rabbits and a pair of hamsters.
Even the cages were now mine.

I knew how to take care of them,
For the one who had them before me,
Had been teaching me how to care for them.
He was an old, old man, with no relatives left to care about him. He had recently died in his sleep, and left them to me.

The rabbits were quite big in size,
And I knew that they would fetch me a good price if I wished to sell them. But I vowed to do things just like the old man did, and not sell too many off at one time. I needed to retain enough good stock to keep the rabbits breeding.
I also needed to keep enough for myself.

The pair of hamsters were due to have a litter any day now. They would grow quickly, and also be sold to others, though maybe not as quickly as the rabbits.

Most people could handle the thought of eating rabbit.
But not too many could handle the thought of eating a hamster. The hamsters were enough to flavor a pot of soup though, and for those who could afford little else, it was still edible meat.

Some purchased a male and a female rabbit from me,
Just so they could start their own tiny rabbit farm in their back yard. Others wanted one to eat. I charged them extra, to kill it and skin it for them. Most found a way to do it themselves, for they did not have that extra money. Sometimes they paid me to do it in front of them, so they would be able to do it next time by themselves. I didn’t mind showing them. If I knew I would be killing one soon, I would let them know so they could come and learn for free. I wasn’t one of those charlatans who was out just to gouge their customer. I (and the old man before me,) were ones that the people trusted.

There were those of course, who still greatly struggled with the thought of killing a rabbit for food, but sooner or later, their bellies would growl louder than their conscience, and they would break down and buy one to eat. I would try to sell them the older ones, telling them that they had already lived a good long life in rabbit years, and would soon die of old age before too long anyways. They seemed to appreciate this thought.

I also stretched the skins out and scraped them clean, and then sold the pelts later to be used to help keep one warm. (I was not a good sewer, but I was good enough to piece some together for me to stay warm enough in the winter.) Some people didn’t want to be bothered with the skin, and I then told them that I would buy it back from them, for a little bit of money. It would take me quite a bit of work to clean up the fur, but if they had done a half way decent job of skinning it, then the work left was not too much for me to do. I could then sell it for a small profit, or keep it myself to use.

The pelts were not as big of a seller, as the rabbits themselves were. The meat, the protein, is what was in the highest demand.

I then woke up.

* * * *