We may be surprised at the people we find in heaven. God has a soft spot for sinners.
- Bishop Desmond Tutu
I visited my dermatologist this week and chatted with the medical assistant, who was outgoing and easy to talk with. She told me about her daughter, who was studying to be a nurse.
“I always wanted to be a nurse too,” she said “but it’s too late now I know.” She had all the qualities a good nurse needs and I assured her that it is never too late. She asked what kind of nursing I had done, and when I told her hospice, she said, “Oh, that has to be so sad.” I assured her that at times it is, but that more often than not, as patients get closer to their time of dying, they become very peaceful and have wonderful experiences of seeing loved ones who have died before them, hearing beautiful music and being visited by angels.
That’s all it took. Inevitably when you open the door to how natural heavenly experiences are, people have a story to tell. It seems that the medical assistant’s mother had struggled for years with illnesses associated with end-stage diabetes, and although she was only 69, she was just worn out by the disease and died. She had struggled with the pain of losing her mother, but also with her feelings of guilt associated with the relief that comes when a loved one dies after a long illness. It had been hard to see her mother suffer so much without being able to help her.
But she said now she could finally speak about her feelings of gratitude, because she knew her mother was at peace. It seems her mother came to her in a wonderful dream not long after her death. She looked beautiful and happy and told her daughter she wanted her to be happy because she herself was happy now—free of pain and enjoying her peace. It was so evident that this lovely dream had put her daughter’s heart to rest and now she could go about her daily life in a happy and healthy way.
The depth of God’s love for us, to allow this young woman’s mother to appear to her in a dream with a personal message, is just too hard to comprehend. He loves us with a divine love that is constant, never changing, complete until we are safely home with him. This shows us once again that he is always with us. How extraordinary!