It's that time of year--cool nights, warm days, pumpkins riping in the patch. Yup, it is the month of October, time for things that go bump in the night. I want to talk about my things that go bump in the day and whispers from heaven.
Our Aunt Sherry recently sent us a copy of the May 2010 Guideposts. In it one will find an article written by Ptolemy Tompkins entitled "Divine Dreams." Even though it is about the question do our pets go to heaven, it has some really interesting information that has solidified some incidents that happened to me this summer.
Mr. Tompkins explains what happens during the time right before we go to sleep and that time right before we wake. It is called the "hypnagogic state." This occurs when we are in that strange place between waking and sleep, "where we are neither fully conscious nor unconscious." The term hypnagogia comes from combining the Greek words "hypnos" which means sleep and "agogeus" which means conductor. The third century philosopher Iamblichus called this "the visions that occur that are 'god-sent'." Aristotle also wrote about this. He said, "... in a moment of awakening, a man may 'surprise the images which present themselves to him in sleep'."
In the Bible, there are many mentions of visions. In Genesis we learn about Jacob's vision of the ladder of angels. In the New Testament, one can read, "Your young men shall see visions, you're old men shall dream dreams." These two examples plus many others assure us that dreams can be a "genuine conduit for God's word."
So, you may be asking why I am writing about this. Even though some may question my sanity, I, too, have had visions--visions of Andrew. The first wasn't a vision, but I heard him speak to me. The basement had been a place of sadness for me since June 7th. It took me ten days after Andrew's death to even go down there. For ten days Bill had to do laundry, get meat from the freezer, or grab a can of something from the cupboard. Finally, one day I was forced to go down there (one of God's little jokes on me...more at a later date). I timidly took each step carefully. I forced myself to take that final step. I grabbed the meat from the freezer and ran back up the stairs. Whew--I survived! However, I knew I would have to be braver the next time I went down there. The next morning, I loaded up a laundry basket and forced myself to go down those steps one more time. This time it was a little easier, but I knew I had to be down there longer than five seconds. So I walked over to the washer and dryer, put my laundry basket on the floor, and turned to face the part of the basement that I dreaded. I shouted, "Satan--get out of my basement! You took my son...you will not take my home!" I kept repeating, "Satan--get out of my basement!" Whether you believe me or not, I felt the sadness leave. I took a deep breath and turned to complete the task that I had come to do. While I pulled the clothes from the dryer, I felt a presence. I turned and looked. Nothing. I returned to pulling clothes from the dryer, when I heard a whisper, "Mom, I'm sorry." It was Andrew's voice. He had just given me a little reassurance. From that moment on, I don't mind going to the basement. I still take a deep breath before I go down, but I no longer hesitate.
My second message from heaven came during a very mundane task--mopping the floor. It had been a sad day. Crying during breakfast. Crying during vacuuming. Crying during lunch. I turned my favorite CD on really loud and starting mopping the kitchen floor. Suddenly a very clear picture of Andrew jumped into my head. He was carrying a baby and was looking very peaceful. Within the hour, I learned that Lillian Jane had been delivered to her parents. But I already knew; I saw Andrew deliverying her to earth.
I already told you about my vision/dream of Andrew that I had while we were on our trip to Yellowstone. I feel his presence with me everyday, especially this week as I see his friends and classmates celebrating Homecoming. Do you think they feel his presence as well?
So as we come into the season when people love to get scared at the haunted corn maze and watch really scary movies, I realize I want to see and hear more from the spirit of my son. Maybe I had my "visions" of Andrew this summer as a reassurance that he is okay. Looking back, those are precious moments to me. "The dreams that come from angels give us a wonderous and reassuring glimpse." I can tell you, for me, they were very reassuring glimpses of my son.