COMFORT FROM THE OTHER SIDE

So how thin is the veil separating time and eternity? Do those who have left us see us? Could we send them a message? Or is there no interaction between this life and the next? It can get exciting to think about the possibilities. It can also get weird. We don’t pray to them, but some form of communication is likely. Many worship ancestors and pray to them for success, as if they now have special powers. Digging into the world beyond may put us in touch with the underworld. Satan has a toolbox he uses to bring down the living–accusation, intimidation, temptation, and perhaps the most common–deception. He “deceives the whole world” (Revelation 12:9), often through sorcery, the illegitimate use of the non-material world to impact the physical world. Those who naively seek afterlife realities may be dabbling with the devil.

However, the writer of Hebrews spoke about “a great a cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1). He had just referenced saints who had gone before in the Faith Hall of Fame (ch. 11), so the witnesses are those who have passed on to glory. That includes loved ones who put their trust in Jesus. Can they see us? Witnesses are called to testify, not because they think something but because they have seen something. We know that the dead are not dead. Paul said, “Absent from the body, present with the Lord” (2 Cor. 5:8). So they definitely see Him, and most likely others who are there. Happy reunions are probably occurring.

Do they see those still on earth? We know they are aware of some things. Martyrs before the throne ask the Lord when he is going to avenge their blood (Revelation 6:10), so they knew that it had not yet happened. But wouldn’t their knowledge of happenings on the earth give them grief? Not if eternity gives them a transformed perspective of suffering. I believe, thanks to Randy Alcorn’s excellent book, Heaven, that the veil between earth and heaven is thinner than I once thought. That does not mean contacting the dead (necromancy, which is really talking with demons), but it may mean some form of communication.

We had a series at our house church on “Heaven, the Happiest Place on Earth.”  Audrey, one of our members, sent me this story hoping it would give those who have lost loved ones some peace. “My Sister, Tsungie, passed away in December 2001 at the age of 13 after suffering a brain hemorrhage. Although we knew she might die at a young age due to her Sickle Cell Anemia, we were devastated. We had prayed that she would live a long and happy life. My parents spent years going from one doctor to another to ensure the best and most affordable medical treatment.

After her death, my mother would often cry alone. Like us all, she missed her deeply. One day  my mother was crying inconsolably and asking herself why such a tragedy had happened. That night my sister appeared to her in a dream and asked her, “Mom, why are you crying? I am happy where I am.” She showed her the white robe she was wearing, surrounded by others wearing the same. Tsungie looked happy, and so did everyone. Since that dream my mother has accepted her death and has had some closure.” How kind of a loving Father to bring about communication to console a grieving mother. He is truly “the God of all comfort.”`

This entry was posted in Heaven.

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