I had a dream in which I visited heaven. As I approached, an angel took me by the hand and acted as my guide, explaining everything that I was seeing.
We walked by – I guess you would call it a meadow, but it was covered with clouds rather than grass. I saw a man in the center, surrounded by hundreds of other people.
“During his life,” the angel explained, “that man was a nurse. Those people around him are the patients he served and the families he consoled.”
In the next meadow I saw a woman in the center of a crowd. “She was a firefighter,” the angel explained, “and those are the people she helped.”
“Not every patient the nurse cared for lived, nor did every person for whom the firefighter responded. The celebration is that someone cared; someone tried.”
We turned a corner and walked a very long way; everything looked the same, but it felt different – colder. I saw a man surrounded by hundreds of others who were all silent and just staring at him.
“This man believed that he had an intimate understanding of God’s will, and slaughtered those who did not share his belief. Now, and for eternity, he will be surrounded by their anguish and pain.
“You were all told, ‘What you sow, also shall you reap.’ If you sow love or if you sow hatred, be prepared to spend eternity with it.”
The angel looked at me kindly. “I know it’s a lot to absorb. You’ve seen enough to understand – maybe too much. Go home.”
With that I awoke in my own bed.
Powerful dream, Steve. Scary, yet instructive. For many years, along with my list of persons to pray for and litany of early morning prayers, I include anyone and everyone who may be in hell. I used to say, “Remember the bible story of the lost sheep and how Jesus left His entire flock to find that one lost sheep who cried out in the night.”
But one morning several years ago, a thought came to me: Perhaps those persons in hell don’t know that specific scripture or any scripture, and thus don’t know to call out to God.