I have shared before about having been gravely ill and spending a month in the hospital while living in Germany. I shared that I had severe pancreatitis and hepatitis and was on morphine for pain relief. What I didn’t share was that I died and here is my story.
The pain was unbearable even with the shots of morphine and I could not fight any longer. I had been fighting the pain for more than a week and I was giving up. I remember that I could not move my body and I felt so ill, never have I felt so ill as this time. God had been merciful to me and I remember hearing music in my head like a radio station, all the hymns and songs I had ever sung but couldn’t remember the words were being sung and now I remembered all the words. I remember that gut awful pain, such misery. I was crying out to the Lord concerning my pain and asking for relief when I noticed two human-like beings sitting at the top of my ceiling. It reminded me of the old television show Bewitched that I had watched as a child and the witches in the show that could listen in on human conversations by looking down into the room where humans were gathered.
“Would you like to come?” asked one of the beings and I said yes. The two looked at each other and nodded their heads yes. Without another word I saw my body floating out of the bed and I was flying upward out of the room with one being on each side of me. We flew out of the hospital and I could look back and see the nurses and other medical personnel going about their duties. We flew higher and were out of Heidelberg, Germany and into the atmosphere where soon I could see earth below and other planets and stars ahead. There was no bright light, just the reality that we were flying away from earth and toward something unknown.
It wasn’t long until we entered a place where many people were gathered, the place was bright with light and for a minute I was confused. Soon I realized that we were standing on white marble flooring and I remember how surprised I was that the floor didn’t feel cold. There were huge white pillars with gold tops in the room and I noticed thousands upon thousands of people from all races and cultures prostrate on the floor bowing toward the source of light behind the pillars. I heard chanting “He is holy, Oh mighty One!” and beautiful acapella singing that I recognized as praise for God coming from a group of people standing in white long robes to the right of the light source. They had their heads bowed as they sang their songs of praise. My eyes couldn’t quite grasp all that I was seeing but I felt such a strong sense of peace and security that I knew immediately I wanted to stay. The two beings were on their knees and were pulling on me to bend my knees and prepare to be prostrate on the floor.
I fell to my knees but I longed to see where the light source was coming from. I could see smoke rising and the aroma was sweet but nothing I recognized. I could hear people but I couldn’t see their faces who were on their knees and in white robes with hoods on their heads crying out, “How long, Sovereign Lord, until we have justice?” I knew instantly that they had been martyred for the faith. I heard a booming voice that said, “Wait a little longer, be patient.” Instantly I knew the voice was God and I realized that the voice was coming from the bright shining light behind the pillar in front of me. I strained to see around the pillar but the two beings were pulling on me to lay prostrate.
“You must lie down,” pleaded one of the beings, “you must give praise.” But I would not lay prostrate because I knew that God was behind the pillar and I wanted to see His face! I saw the light growing brighter and could see the back of the head of a huge Man who was sitting on a golden throne and it was obvious I was about to be discovered. I cried out, “Oh God, please let me see Your face!” I cried tears and was struggling to stand but the beings were holding me down and I cried again, “Please, dear God, I am in so much pain please let me see Your face!”
“Who speaks?” commanded the voice in such authority that the beings beside me shuddered and they were quietly pleading with me to be quiet. I was too afraid to speak but oh how I wanted to see God’s face. The Holy Man turned and saw the beings but still I couldn’t see His face. “Why did you bring her?” He was directing the question to one of the beings.
I tried to wiggle free and kept pleading to let me see God’s face. I knew that if I saw His face that my earthly body would die and I would stay in Heaven and I longed to stay where there was such sweet peace and comfort. The being answered simply, “She wanted to come and so we let her.” There was a loud roll of thunder and lightning came from the throne. The commanding voice said “It is not her time, take her back!” The two beings bowed low and then began to stand up and I could tell that they were going to take me back to earth but I cried even louder and pleaded as I have never pleaded before or since, “Please, have mercy on me, I want to stay, there’s no pain here, please, I beg of You, let me stay!”
The back of the Man’s head did not move but His left hand came up and it became quiet in the room except for the chanting of the people prostrate on the floor and God said in a kindly voice, “My child, it is not your time yet for you have work still to do, now go back with My blessing.”
I pleaded, “Please Lord, I can’t handle the pain any longer, please don’t send me back.”
He continued softly and gently, “But don’t you want to see your daughters grow up to be women?”
“No, “I cried, “they will be better off without me.”
“No, my child,” He said gently, “Don’t you want to see them go to their senior prom, go to college, to see who they become, to get married?”
“No, Lord,” I cried, “They will be better off without me.”
“Don’t you want to meet your son?”
“What son, Lord, I can’t have any more children?” I felt confused. I had already had a hysterectomy so how could I have a son?
“Don’t you want to meet your second husband?”
“What?” I was even more confused. Was my husband going to die? What? “No Lord, please, please let me stay!”
“My child, I cannot let you stay because you still have unfinished business on earth, you must go back,” He said gently and then His voice changed and He commanded the two beings, “Take her back now!”
Immediately I was falling faster and faster toward earth and soon I was returning to my pain filled sick body crying and pleading that I didn’t want to come back.
I opened my eyes and I saw the most beautiful blue eyes with thick, curly brown eyelashes and I felt the warmth of human breath on my face but felt confused because all I could see were those beautiful blue eyes and eyelashes. I softly said, “Are you an angel?”
Immediately the eyes jumped back and I realized that my male nurse was the owner of those beautiful blue eyes. He stood there in his combat fatigue military uniform with the stethoscope still hanging around his shoulders and he looked frightened and shocked! “What’s that you said?”
I thought he would think me crazy so I said, “I need a drink please.” He placed the glass with the straw to my mouth and I sipped a drink. I was back in my hospital bed and the two beings were no longer in my room. I cried after the nurse left my room. The radio of music and scriptures from the Bible were once again playing in my head and I fell asleep. When I awoke again I knew that I had to fight for life because God had said it wasn’t my time to die and so I fought that battle and eventually won back my strength.
Three months later I saw the male nurse at the PX (military shopping area) and I took the time to talk to him to thank him for taking such good care of me while I was in the hospital. He said, “May I ask you a question?” I agreed that he could. “Do you remember the night you asked me for a drink?” I did remember, how could I ever forget! “Did you ask me if I was an angel?” I said that I did. “There’s something I want to tell you about that night, you see, I came into your room making my rounds and you were not breathing. I checked for a pulse in your wrist and there was none, I checked your feet and there was no pulse, I checked your temple and neck and there was no pulse. I checked for a heartbeat but there was none. I was making my last check for a sign of life by seeing if there was any breath from your nose or mouth and was preparing to call the doctor to have you declared dead when you opened your eyes and scared the life out of me!”
We talked about this for a few minutes and I told him that I thought God wanted me to live and he said that he had never really believed in God but he was beginning to think about God more as he realized that I was brought back to life before his very eyes.
Isn’t that the way God works sometimes? I spent a long time pondering why God wouldn’t let me stay in Heaven, it is a real place, it is peaceful, it is beautiful and I can’t wait to return there. Words can’t express all that I felt while there, but it was beautiful. I have seen everything God told me would happen except for husband number two. I still wonder about that!
I won’t read details about other people’s experiences concerning Heaven because I don’t want to lose the impression that I experienced. For many years I didn’t discuss my experience with anyone outside my family because I didn’t want people to think I was crazy. But lately I have been convicted that perhaps I am denying Christ when I am silent about it so I am sharing it now.
Was this a morphine hallucination or was this a real experience? I will let you decide. But for me I know that all I have gone through since that time in Heidelberg, Germany, I have known that I am not alone, that Jesus is real, that God’s house is a real place and that no matter what, Jesus loves me and God cares about my life. I won’t do anything to miss being there. What sweet peace, what calm, what love, what glory and majesty, what splendor, what joy and what excitement is waiting when this life on earth is finished. I want to see you there one day. Please stay faithful and don’t get discouraged because Heaven is waiting!
Until next time…Katherine