"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:12
Kate James had just entered heaven, and already her husband John wanted her to look back at the earth.
Although technically, no one was tied to another as husband and wife in heaven. She didn’t fully fathom that yet, since John had been her husband for over sixty years until he passed away. She’d kept celebrating their anniversary on June 30th every year until she’d racked up almost seventy.
And now he was just a brother in Christ. Weird. But in a good way.
“Look, Katie,” John motioned toward the window to earth. More than a mere hole in a cloud, this window resembled giant, frameless French doors of brilliant crystal. Fluffy white clouds floated through an azure sky on the other side.
“It’s a door. Can we walk through?” she wondered aloud.
“Yes.” John had a gleam in his eye. “Don’t you remember all the times I visited you?”
Her hand flew to her heart. “Oh, John! That was really you?”
“Of course it was!” With a heartfelt chuckle, he wrapped an arm over her shoulders and leaned in for a closer look at the window. “You’ll want to see what’s happening in Crystal Falls today.”
“What are you saying?” Alarmed, but not sad, never sad – she questioned him. “But surely our family in Crystal Falls will be mourning my death. I don’t want to see my own funeral!”
“Oh, yes, Katie, you do.” He hugged her. “Look.”
Reluctantly, Kate watched as an image appeared. Understanding dawned as she knew John’s thoughts brought it into focus.
Her family gathered around the dinner table in her son’s farmhouse. She knew they were sad, but somehow that didn't make her sad. Every tear they shed affirmed her of their love.
“I miss her already, but I know she and Dad are having a happy reunion.” Her son, John, Jr., looked straight at them, almost as if he could see them.
“Grandma is happy again,” her granddaughter Laura proclaimed. “No more pain and suffering.”
All around that table, each one of her family celebrated her being with Jesus and John.
Joy and validation filled her heart.
“No sorrow, no sadness, no tears!” she exclaimed.
“And no time restrictions,” John assured her. “What feels like forever on earth feels like a few moments here. We have people to meet and things to do with unlimited time to enjoy it all.”
“Okay. Boundless joy and unlimited time.” The endless possibilities expanded in her mind. “But I have so many questions! Like what about family who doesn’t go to heaven, and what do we do when, and what if I visit my family and mess up their destiny, and—”
“Slow down, Katie.” Jesus appeared, and laid a gentle hand on her shoulder. “First of all, you don’t have the power to mess up anyone’s destiny. When you visit earth, your family will sense you, but they can’t see or hear you.”
“Jesus—” Where Kate’s heart used to have a gaping hole of longings and grief, her Savior’s love and grace fulfilled her with peace.
Jesus smiled, as if He knew her thoughts. “You know I love you, Katie.”
She realized He did know her thoughts. Yet she felt no fear in voicing them, no humiliation that John would hear her deepest musings.
Nothing to fear! She was fully and deeply loved, unconditionally accepted. Like a child, she felt uninhibited to share her every whim with her loving Father.
And this thought surprised her. She couldn’t mess up anyone’s destiny, but she also lost any desire to tell anyone what to do.
“My need for control is completely gone,” she admitted with astonishment.
John had the biggest laugh at that. After sixty years of marriage, he knew Kate’s controlling tendencies better than anyone on that side of heaven.
“I have no desire at all to get my own way, to figure out how Johnny’s going to keep the farm, or even to decide what flowers they use at my funeral.” She pointed to the glass. “Look, they chose gladiolas instead of my favorite yellow roses, and mixed sunflowers with them!”
“Since you’re the florist, that’s a big one!” John thoroughly enjoyed her confession. “Everything has to be perfect with you!”
Even Jesus joined their laughter at the old inside joke. Back on earth, John always teased her perfectionist ways using those exact words. Often, he’d been more frustrated than amused.
“The yellow glads actually look great with sunflowers. And roses would fade in the August heat." Kate stuck her nose into the air with good-natured fun but not a hint of pride. "See, everything in heaven is already perfect. So there!”
“And perfect you.” John hugged her tight.
“Perfect love for everyone,” Jesus said with a smile. “Including your granddaughters.”
Kate gasped, remembering the premonition about her granddaughter Rachel’s unfaithful husband.
“Your vision comes true, Kate.” Jesus assured her. “And all will be well.”
What do YOU wonder about heaven? What irritating trait do you look forward to freedom from?
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Disclaimer: This story is completely FICTIONAL based partly on what the Bible says about heaven and partly on the author's vivid imagination.
Read more about Kate's family life on earth, and her granddaughters
Laura and Rachel in the Crystal Falls Series.
Find Dianne's books HERE.