The peace of knowing that loved ones are waiting to accompany us into heaven is just one way God takes care of his children.
Jay and his wife, Terri, lived next door to us for many years, and Terri and I had wonderful times together. Before we built our home next door, their young daughter Nancy had died in a car accident on her way to school. Although Terri did not speak about her often, the pain in her eyes each time she mentioned her name was impossible to miss.
Another daughter, Barbara, a talented social worker with a heart of gold, missed her sister greatly. We watched her grow up without the companionship that having a sister close in age would have brought.
Years passed and Terri and Jay moved to the beach—we touched base now and then and always knew we cared about one another’s lives but did not see one another often. Terri had a heart condition; many years before, she’d had a near-death experience that brought her enormous peace, leaving her with no fear of death at all. Then too, she always knew Nancy would be waiting for her—a mother always knows.
Terri entered a beautiful hospice center when her body grew tired and could no longer function well. She was peaceful, pain-free and ready to go. She began to decline quickly, with Jay, Barbara and her best friends all around her. Just as she was about to take her last breath, she turned her head toward the door. Her eyes opened wide and she smiled, recognizing the one who had come for her, just as she walked into heaven.
Barbara knew in an instant that her sister Nancy was with her mom; she felt her presence in the room. There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that Nancy had come to the door to take Terri into heaven. The peace of knowing that loved ones are present and waiting to accompany us into heaven is just one more of the ways that God takes care of his children. We are indeed blessed.
Trudy gets so many questions and stories of end-of-life experiences from Guideposts readers, we decided to make her responses a regular feature on her blog. If you have a story about a “glimpse of heaven,” please share it with us. Send it to [email protected].