Dreams

This past Sunday, I gave a presentation on dreams to a small group of people at a United Methodist Church in Madison, Wisconsin.  They have spent the month listening to presenters talking about different types of dreams and spiritual experiences related to them.  First they were introduced to dreams as they might be interpreted based on Carl Jung’s work.  I call these type of dreams the ones that help us to work out challenges in our daily life.  We go to bed with the stress of the day and things weighing heavy on our minds and our dreams sometimes give us answers to our problems.

Next an illustrator for a young boy who had a near death experience came and talked about his contact with this extraordinary boy with an extraordinary experience.  NDE are well documented and many new books have been published in recent years.  These people have had a glimpse into life after death, something we all question even those of us with great faith.

And then, it was my turn.  I talked about my journey with precognition dreams.  Dreams that have for many years been considered scary,  burdensome to finally acceptance and embracing.  The source of my dreams has always been through God.  I accept this through faith.  God has sent my departed relatives as the messengers of the information telling of things that have not yet happened.  Because they bring me these special messages I know to pay attention to them.  And, because they bring me the messages, I am assured they are alive in spirit beyond this earthly plain.  Their visits are blessings.

The next time you dream of a departed relative, pay attention to the message they might bring.

When Spirit Is Quiet

There are times when there is so much going on in our life that it is difficult to hear Spirit. The busyness of everyday living, chores, errands, work, family, relationships occupies our thoughts to the exclusion of hearing Spirit.

It is during these times that we need to be close to God the most, yet it is so easy to ignore the voices in our head {I.e.Spirit}. We want to do things our way.

The last few weeks, amongst the responsibilities of life, I felt like Spirit was quiet. In fact I didn’t blog last week because I felt spiritually depleted. In reflection, I now know Spirit was not quiet, I was not listening.

Take some time this week to be still and listen.

A Soldier’s Gift

My family has a long history of military service dating back to the Revolutionary War, Civil War and more recently my grandfather in World War I, my father in World War II and my brother in the Vietnam War.  We were lucky that they all came back home physically whole.  My brother Jerry who served in Vietnam brought the war back home with him as many vets did then and are doing now with current conflicts.  He also came home with a new gift or “curse” which I write about in my book “Blessed Assurance Through Visions and Dreams”.

Jerry developed a sense of who was going to die in battle.  He told me it was something about the person’s eyes that gave him the sense of the person’s fate.  Years after Jerry died, my daughter told me of a conversation she had with her uncle.  He told her that he would see the person in black and white and that would be the sign that death would be near.

After the war, this ability continued his whole life.  I remember one instance where he said good-bye to a co-worker on a Friday after work and he knew she wouldn’t be back on Monday.  She was killed in a motorcycle accident on the weekend.    It was a huge burden to know something, but not be able to do anything about it.  How do you tell someone to be extra careful because you think they might be at risk or ill?  Having fore-knowledge is a gift but also a curse.

I remember him watching television and Joe Louis, the boxer, was in the audience.  Jerry said he was going to die.  Mr. Louis died the next day.

Being an intuitive comes with responsibility to be ethical, compassionate and empathic.  If you have a gift, I would love your feedback on how you handle your fore-knowledge of events.

Intituition Can Be Contagious

Today I celebrate the 30th anniversary of the day I met my husband!  We are going to go back to the little town we met, Wales, Wisconsin, and to the place we knew as the Whistling Toad.  The place has changed hands several times over the years and we are not even sure it is currently open.  If it is not, we will go to one of our other favorite dinner spots in the area.  I am feeling a little nostalgic and wondering where the time went.

When we married, his children were 16 and 14.  Mine were 8 and 4.  It took a lot of love and patience on everyone’s part to get through the struggles and the joys.  Milestones such as birthdays, graduations, weddings, births of grandchildren and their birthdays and graduations and now weddings have come and gone but through it all our love for each other and our faith in a loving God has sustained us.

One of those most challenging areas for my husband at first was dealing with an intuitive who has crazy dreams.  At first, he has polite and empathic but skeptical.  Than as more things came to be, he started to believe more in my dreams.  He also learned to trust and believe my intuition.  When I said we needed to something a certain way or in a certain timeframe, he began to trust my judgment.  Soon we were on the same page, an old married couple you might say, at an early point in our marriage.  I loved him more each day.

As the years have fallen by the wayside, the most exciting thing for me is watching him develop his own intuition.  When he gets that little nudge in his ear to do something like take the car to work instead of riding the bus or bring home his computer so he can work at home the next day, he listens.  Nine out of ten times it becomes apparent why he needs to take the action.

We all have the gift of intuition.  Some of us are just more tuned in than others.  We can learn to be better at it.  It is a matter of being observant, listening to your heart, mind and body and acting upon what you hear.  I am so blessed to have met my husband and have had a great ride thus far.  He is retiring October 1st and we are ready for the next part of our journey together.  Happy Anniversary Jerry.  I love you.

A Mother’s Love

This past Sunday we celebrated Mother’s Day.  I like to think of this day as celebrating all those women who have nurtured me along life’s journey.  The list includes Aunts, neighbors, church ladies, co-workers early in my career, pastors (yes, I was lucky to have female pastors growing up), and of course, my mother and grandmother.

These women taught me how to me a strong, compassionate, faithful woman.  I am deeply grateful for each of their influence on me.  My mother was the best.  I know you are thinking the same thing about your own.  She was raised on a farm in Tennessee and brought southern values into our home.  Her work ethic was beyond reproach, her faith in God steadfast and her love for her children ran deep.  She also had the gift of precognition, so I grew up knowing it was not to be feared.

She died when I was 26 and my grandmother died a few months later.  I became the matriarch of the family at a very young age.  The other women in my life became my mentors and mother-figures.  The person who entered my life thirty years ago was my mother-in-law, Laverne.  She showed me how to be a loving wife, mother, step-mother and grandmother.  From the moment I married her son, she accepted my children as her grandchildren.  There was no “step” in front of that title.  Her love is unconditional and I love her deeply and am grateful each day that when I married her son, I also her as part of the package.

Even though my mother has crossed over, she is never far away.  I feel her presence at the times I need a mother’s love the most.  I pray to God for her to be near and I feel her close.  The bonds of love can be very strong and survive even death.  I have been blessed with many “moms” that I give tribute to this day.  But none are as strong as the love between my birth mom and me even in death.  Be sure to let your mother know how much she means to you this week and every week.

Precious Life

A mentor and friend who has blogged the last eighteen months of her journey with cancer has just been put on hospice care.  She has been courageous in her battle and open in her struggles and her joys.  She looks for the good and calls them her “God sightings”.  These are places where people have walked into her life at moments that could bring despair but instead bring comfort and joy.  To say she is a positive thinker would be an understatement.

Her last journal posting talked about how important it is to tell the people you are close to how much you love them and hug them each day.  We all know that.  We have heard “never go to bed angry”, “treat each other like it is the last time you may see them”, “count your blessings” and countless other bits of wisdom passed onto us.  But, how many of us are faithful to this wisdom.

It is so much easier to hold a grudge, give a cold shoulder, give someone the silent treatment.  Freedom comes in forgiving and letting go.  Life is a precious gift.  I, for one, do not want to waste it with regrets.  So, I am going to take my friend’s advice and give some extra big hugs this week.  I hope you will too.

Let The Spirit Lead

This morning I heard someone on K-Love radio station talking about how she had lost 74 pounds by simply letting go and letting God lead. I use the word simply knowing that it is a loaded word, for there is nothing simple about trusting someone much less God to lead us to a desired end. She talked about how she would take a moment and pray for guidance when eating out at a restaurant to make the right food choice which would help her reach her health goals. She paused and thought about what she was doing and trusted that the Spirit would help her.

As she did this more and more about food choices, she found it slipping into all aspects of her life. Whenever she needs to make a decision, she pauses and prays for guidance. Wow. If only, everyone would do this, think of the ramifications for the world. Letting the Spirit lead us in all our decisions might have widespread changes amongst peoples. I am not naïve to think we can get everyone on board with such a plan. However, I do believe we can begin with one person at a time.

Taking a moment before we take action to center ourself and remember who we are spiritually can make a difference in our daily life. Many of us like to start the day with prayer and meditation to connect with Spirit. Some of us like to pray in short bursts throughout the day. Others like to end the day with centering prayer and devotions. There is no right way to connect with Spirit. The key is to listen to what Spirit is telling us during these times of devotions and trust what we are hearing. If we can let go and let the Spirit lead us, changes for the better are promised to us.

Nurturing Relationships

This past week my husband and I were on vacation in Florida. We hoped to get away from the rainy weather in Wisconsin. We did find the Florida sun on most days, however, we also found a couple of much needed rainy days followed us there. April showers are indeed required everywhere to bring May flowers.

Before we left on vacation, a chance one minute interview on the television news, lead me to a reunion with a person who was very important to me in my teens. The interview was with her father, a WW II purple heart recipient, living at the Veteran’s home in Union Grove, Wisconsin. My husband and I went to see Henry the next day.

There were a group of us neighborhood kids who took ballroom and modern dance lessons from Henry for a couple of years at the YWCA and then at his own downtown studio as teens. He had two daughters who were our ages and we became good friends but lost touch as the years passed. Now suddenly, an opportunity presented itself for us to reconnect. And, reconnect we did. Not only did we visit with Henry who at 94 still enjoyed talking about those days of long ago, but we reconnected with one of his daughters before leaving on vacation.

Our little reunion was important because while in Florida, we connected with another member of this small neighborhood group, Bob and his wife Carol. After years of trying to locate him, we found him on facebook several years ago and saw him last year while in Florida too.

Why do I tell you of these connections? It is never to late to nurture a relationship, new or old. Relationships are precious interactions with others. They need conscious effort to maintain. Those friendships we choose to develop and nurture are ones that last a lifetime, both now and in the life to come. If we want to make certain that those we love are with us through eternity, we need to nurture those relationships on our earthly journey.

Death and Beyond

                When I wrote Blessed Assurance Through Visions and Dreams, one of my objectives was to give voice to all those who have similar experiences.  This past weekend I attended a Writer’s Institute in Madison, Wisconsin.  I met many authors and many creative writers in the midst of becoming authors.  Among these, I talked to those who also had spiritual experiences similar to mine.

                There were those who often felt the presence of loved ones who had passed.  They had what I call visitations from beyond.  There were those who had dreams of those that were deceased.  In these dreams, messages were brought.  In all cases, these writers were happy to know that someone had put these experiences in print.  I was happy to know that one of my objectives in writing this book was being met.  I was giving voice to those who were afraid to talk about such things as death and beyond.

                When I was 25, my mother who was 52, was dying from breast cancer.  But, we were not to speak of it.  We were to be optimistic and talk of a future that did not exist.  In my heart, I knew she was dying; yet, out of respect for her wishes I kept silent.  It was the elephant in the room.  As she went through each new surgery or round of radiation or chemo, we still did not talk of death.  We never got to say the important things on our mind.  We didn’t get to talk about the mundane things, like the family recipe for cornbread or how to cook Thanksgiving dinner.  We didn’t get to talk about her fears, if she had any, about death.  We didn’t get to talk about her beliefs about heaven and beyond. 

                There was so much that was left unsaid between us.  The time for sharing secrets, wisdom and laughs had passed as she slipped away.  I was robbed of even her last few breaths as the call came too late for me to get to her the morning of her death.

                So, my encouraging word for you today, my friends, is this.  Do not delay in having conversations with your loved ones about their beliefs about death and beyond.  Know what they think.  Know what they want.  Share life to the fullest, leave nothing unsaid.  You never know when it might be the last time you will see them.

We All Get To Heaven

                Why do I believe that God welcomes all to heaven?  Quite simply, because the God that I worship and praise is a gracious and loving God, one that cares for everyone’s eternal spirit.  I believe like many philosophers and theologians before me that there are layers or steps in heaven.  Once we arrive there is still work for us to do, lessons to be learned.

                Depending on the lessons we have learned in this lifetime, we will arrive in heaven on one of these tiers leading us ultimately to one with God.  I base this belief not only on reading other theologians’ work, but on experience in my family.  For example, there have been members of my family that have not lived the Christian life, yet they have appeared to me in my dreams after they have died and become spirit.  One was a self-avowed atheist who appeared to my father the week that he died.  Surely she would not have gone to heaven, she was a non-believer. Yet, her spirit survived.

                The first two years after my mother died, she visited me often in my dreams and brought me messages from beyond.  Than one night she popped in to my dream and said good-bye, that it was time for her to move forward, to learn new lessons.  That same night she visited my oldest brother and his wife, who she never met, with a similar message.  This visit reinforced for me that indeed there are layers in heaven and lessons to still learn once we get there.  When I need my mom, I pray to God for her to visit me and she usually comes.  So, she is still watching over me, but from a little farther away.

                Since we still have opportunities to grow once we leave this physical world, I strongly believe that we all get to go to heaven.  We just may have never starting places once we get there.  What do you think?  I would love to hear from you.